Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.
You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs (or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
18:05 Sep 13, 2007
Russian to English translations [PRO] Government / Politics
Russian term or phrase:громоотвод
This term appears in a text about parliamentary elections. A minister "«громоотводом» выступает". I can only find the word's literal meaning of "lightning-conductor". Presumably there is an idiomatic meaning as well!
Thank you everyone for your opinions - I see that this has created quite a heated debate!
I understand that "lightning rod" is probably the proper term within the field of politics, but I think in this instance I am going to go with "scapegoat". I have not been given any information about the target audience's background so I cannot presume that they have any specialist political knowledge. I feel that "scapegoat" is a much more familiar term for an English-speaking audience.
With all due respect, esteemed colleagues,you disregard the established usage here. All the web references you cite refer to THINGS or ISSUES, or whatever - not people! An issue may serve as a lightning rod, not a person. A person is made a SCAPEGOAT.
Mark, it means that minor politicians take the criticisms from the society on theirselves leaving the main political person intact. They act as a lightning rod, not allowing the blows go directly to the main politician.