President Putin used his annual state-of-the-nation address to call for honest and transparent government. Corruption, he said, engenders lack of confidence in the economy, of which the signs are everywhere: a stock market with a total value of only $50 billion, capital flight of $20 billion a year and virtually no foreign investment outside of oil and gas. He complained of a growing bureaucracy that defends its “right to bribes and kickbacks,” and of judges who use “coercion and arbitrary acts in launching criminal cases.” The lack of reform risks “a prolonged period of economic stagnation.” In this he sounded very much like his predecessor Boris Yeltsin, who regularly used set-piece speeches to denounce his own government and denigrate the performance of his appointees.