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First few years of russian federation
- regarding the regimes future
- change in leadership goals and style between Yeltsin and Putin also made it
- difficult to follow continuous threads in policy over the years.
- between reform and authoritarianism.
Current economical issues
- much central planning should be cut, how should market econ be handled.
- Therapy (Yeltsin) à
- small group of entrepreneurs running the econ
- bottom fell out when the govt
- defaulted on $billions in debt
- SU, jobs were secure – now unemployment soared
Mendvedev's economy priorities
- infrastructure, innovation, investment, reducing the states role in the econ,
- reform tax system and banking sector, diversify economy
Characteristics of current economy
- the econ steadily improved (privatized industries)
- - econ took a blow when oil prices dropped.
- 2008 – global econ crisis à many
- people are disillusioned with the new regime, and question the wisdom of
- current policy makers.
- – fueled by huge oil and gas reserves and the corporation (mostly state run)
- that own them
- of acts in terror in recent years
- School Seige in
- bombing near a subway in Moscow, and bombs went off in 2 Russian planes almost
- simultaneously (before school)
- responded with reform to boost security (tighter grip from central government
- would foil terrorists)
- had political reform where top officials would not longer be directly elected,
- but selected by the president, then approved.
- calmed for a few years, but reasserted themselves in the summer of 2009
- public life defined by government
- private life where people are free to make individual choices.
- with strong civil society, people follow rules, operate with a degree of trust,
- generally have respectful dealings
- and capitalism depend on civil society
- for successful operation
- members appointed by the pres. and approved by the FC
- to make sure all laws and decrees are constitutional
- moved the court form Moscow to St. Petersburg
- Court created a Supreme Court
- court of appeal. No power to challenge the constitutionality of laws and other
- official actions of the Leg. and Exec. bodies.
Constitution of 1993
- to build a judicial system that is not controlled by the executive à Constitutional Court
- provided for a strong president, although the power was checked by popular election and lower house of legislature, required referendum of people to endorse it
- PROBLEM: most prosecutors and attorneys were trained under the Soviet legal system, so the judiciary currently suffers form a lack of expertise in carrying out the responsibilities outilined the Constitution
- –3 branch government, President, PM, the Duma, and a Constitutional Court
Duma (lower house)
- representation (since ‘07)
- the pres.’s political appointments
- are limited powers (the Pres. can rule by decree)
- attempts to check the PM have failed.
- is controlled by Putin because his Party (United Russia) has most of the seats
- – it still wields some power in the drafting of legislation.
- debates the bills that must pass the deputies’ vote before they become laws.
The federation Council (upper house)
- 2 members from each of the 89 federal administrative units
- purpose is to represent regions, not the population.
- to delay legislation (just like GB)
- FC rejects legislation, the Duma may override the FC with a 2/3 vote
Powers of the president
- –Appoint the PM and Cabinet
- –Issuedecrees that have the force of law
•Pres.has a cabinet with a great deal of concentrated, centralized power.
- •Dumahas no power to censure the cabinet (except reject
- appointment of PM)
Structructure of government
- •Structurewas established by Constitution of 1993
- and Parliamentary Systems àHybrid
- Semi-presidential system
- •Democraticchecks on executive power
- has commanded the executive branch (clearly dominating the other branches)
- Bicamerial legistlation
- –Pravda:Official newspaper of the SU, now a tabloid
- –Newspapers and TV stations are now privately owned (the state controls most of them though)
- –Reporting of the school seizure at Beslan in ‘04
- –Uncertain how much freedom of the press is ‘enjoyed’
- –Novaya Gazeta – 5violent deaths
- •Message: do not criticize the govt.
- –Controls more than ‘underworld crime’ like local businesses, natural resources, and banks
- –Thrive on pay offs from businesses (protection money), money laundering, deals they make with govt. officials.
- –Murdered: bankers, journalists, businessmen, Duma members
- –Threat to the survival of the new democracy
- –The state determines which groups have in put into policymaking
- –Russia has well-established, state-owned holding companies in automobile and aircraft manufacturing, shipbuilding, nuclear power, diamonds, titanium, etc.
- Insider privatization (put in people loyal to Putin/govt
- form of government in which a few people have the power, Yeltsin created one using family
- –Putin shows resistance to the Oligarchs
- •Berezovsky (and Gusinisky) now in exile
- •Mikhail Khodorvsky
- •Oligarchs have withdrawn from political activity (but Putin now has a narrower base support from econ leaders)
- •Grigori Yavlinski
- •Lost all seats in Duma in 2007
- –Union Right Forces
- •Free-market and privatization of industry
- •Lost all seats in Duma in 2007
Some measure putin has imposed
- –Creation of super-districts
- –Removal of governors
- –Appointment of governors
- –Changes in the Federation Council
- –Elimination of single-member-district seats in the Duma
- The “Federation” is highly centralized.
- •Industrialization à increasing urban population
- •73% of Russians living in cities (primarily in Western Russia)
- •Wide econ divide between rural and urban people
- •City dwellers: more educated, in touch with Western culture
- •80% Russians
- •Sizeable numbers of Tatars, Ukrainians, Armenians, Chuvashes, Bashkis, Byelorussians, and Moldavians.
- •These cleavages determine the organization of the country into a “federation” with “autonomous regions,” republics, and provinces who’s borders are based on ethnicity.
Political culture shaped by
- Cultural orientation
- conflicting attutiudes towards the state
Openness. More discussion of political, social and economic issues as well as open criticism of the government. (Applauded by western nations – causing many problems for Gorb.) After so many years of repression, people vented hostility toward the govenrment – encouraging revolt. Especially republics that watned independence from Soviet control.
- Most radical reform. Least successful reform. Keep old soviet structure, and moderinze form within. Transfer of many economic powers held by the central govt to private hadns and
- the market economy. Restructuring.
- –Denounced the purges
- –Secret Speech
- –Failurein the Cuban Missile Crisis and most reforms didn’t appear to be working by the early 60s.
- –Replacedby Leonid Brezhnev.