God wanted to chastise mankind, so he sent lawyers.
Happy Lawyers’ Day! This is a relatively new holiday, which just really got going last year in 2009, after legislation was passed in 2008, creating “Lawyers’ Day.” On this day, Russia’s legal hacks gather together for a big celebration and vote for “Lawyer of the Year.”
When I was researching this column, I looked for some interesting information on how many lawyers there are in Russia, or how many law firms operate, but no dice. But you know, there are a lot...because there is a lot of paperwork in Russia. And a lot of taxes. In desperation, I tried to find out what the Lady Lawyer with the Dirty Book I’d written about in Day of the Legal Profession was up to, but even she seems to have gone quiet. There is, of course, a bunch of information from the Skunk, Adder, Mole & Fox or Dewey, Cheetum & Howe crowd of international legal beagles around, but it is so very dull or pompous, or, worse, dull and pompous, that I think I will just give it a miss and talk about a vaguely related WikiLeak on Russia’s most famous court case, because, frankly, I cannot resist the language. A cable – yes, a diplomatic cable -- written by a senior State Department Official was entitled "Rule of Law Lipstick on a Political Pig: Khodorkovsky Case Plods Along.” I have to think there punctuation missing there somehow. Shouldn’t it be: “Rule of Law: Lipstick on a Political Pig…?” I will ask my father, the world’s greatest living grammarian, but I am pretty sure I’m right. Apart from anything else, all savvy girl bloggers know there isn’t a lipstick color called “Rule of Law.” Duh…
You have to hand it to these Senior State Department Officials, who, by the way fellow American citizens, are spending our tax dollars to attend Chechen warlord weddings and calling it work. They know their literary references and aren’t afraid to use them: “…Recent reports of the death of academic freedom in Russia are greatly exaggerated.” Is Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott (who must feel very embarrassed this week) just very cold or very bored? Or both? Can I humbly suggest she cut out the verbal repartee and get out there and diplom?
The news that the Khodorkovsky case continues to plod along came as no surprise, because the legal wheels in Russia turn very slowly indeed: it took the judge almost an entire year to read out the entire 800 page indictment in an annoying monotone while journalists spelled one another in stuffy courtroom, and the accused hung out in a cage in the courtroom.
It has, however, provided lots of employment for many of Russia’s finest legal minds…and no doubt will for years to come.
Stay tuned for updates on Russia’s Lawyer of the Year!
This post is part of The Stunt
Hey there readers!
Do you know any lawyers in Russia? Are you a lawyer yourself? Who is your pick for “Lawyer of the Year?” Hit the comment button below and let us know! And, for those of you who saw yesterday’s FIFA comment, I just wanted to update you and say that I had a 9pm epiphany on the whole thing when I suddenly realized that I could rent my apartment in Moscow to some Saudi Royals for…oh about $4 million dollars a minute. Very exciting. Does anyone know any Saudi Royals? I don’t’ think it’s too early to begin putting out the feelers, really, do you?
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