Final Word from Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Miloš Zeman's departure yesterday for an event in China that all other EU heads of state are shunning is a reminder of whom the Czech president is representing. It's not the Czech people this time, and it's not the community of European nations. Whether it's more J&T on this occasion than PPF is hard to say, but the substance is the same: Zeman is acting in his capacity as the oligarchs' president, and he shows no shame in doing so. Zeman's predecessor, Václav Klaus, helped create the oligarchs, although they weren't yet being called that. Zeman's successor will likely follow in these same footsteps, unless Czechs wake up and identify someone who understands what oligarchy is doing to the country and who has the courage to stand up to it. Preaching Havel-like platitudes isn't enough to prevent the Czech criminal elite from handpicking two candidates and using their newspapers and TV stations to make sure one of them wins. [Czech Republic presidential elections Václav television]

Glossary of difficult words

to shun - to avoid, evade, ignore or reject;

platitude - a remark or statement, esp. with a moral content, that has been used too often to be interesting or thoughtful;

to handpick - to select carefully with a particular purpose in mind.

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