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Today marks exactly one year since Vladimir Putin was elected Russian president for the third time. Media outlets discuss what has happened in the political and public life of the country within this year. Some political analysts note that Putin has strongly changed the style of rule.
Political analysts maintain the Vladimir Putin has changed, the Nezavisimaya daily writes. The situation in the country has also changed. President’s political style has been renewed, vectors of main political strikes have been changed, and Putin increasingly frequently turns publicly not to his target audience. “One is not required to be political analyst to understand that Putin’s policy in 2012 drastically differed from that in the 2000s,” political analyst Pavel Danilin says.
Danilin says “in the early 2000s, when Putin just came to power, a wild liberalism was dominating in the country ideologically and politically, which absolutely suppressed demands and the will of the majority”. “In the 2000s Putin had to deal with a huge country, which officials and businessmen hateful to it drew into a deadlock, putting it on the brink of a civil war. We rather quickly got out of that situation, but nevertheless during his first two terms Putin had to maximally take into consideration the interests of liberal groups. After 2011, when that group united against Putin, as well as after his victory in 2012 positions of liberals in the ideological sphere were extremely weakened,” he said.
“Putin’s victory came with a clear support of the conservative majority,” Danilin stressed. “This is what determined the pushing of liberals to political margins and the socially conservative course of the president and his administration last year and this one,” he said.
“The concept of Vladimir Putin’s third term was formulated in his seven election articles, and there is no other reason for looking for another source motivating his present moves, as the population elected the president to honor his contract. Which is exactly what he is doing item by item,” the director general of the Political Information Centre, Alexei Mukhin, believes.
Mukhin is confident that “judging by tendencies that have been seen in the society of late, most of Vladimir Putin’s election promises in the social sphere will be fulfilled by 2018”.
Twelve months ago it was believed that taming the opposition will be Vladimir Putin’s main political problem, the Moskovsky Komsomolets writes. The forecasts failed. Yes, a mass public discontent has stayed in place. But there are no politicians capable to “channel” this discontent into some dangerous for the power moves. Opposition orators who used to proudly puff out their chests a year ago, look today like “paper Napoleons” and almost like caricatures.
However, a powerful psychological chock caused by a mass outburst of public discontent at the turn of 2011 and 2012, has had its effect on Putin. This shock made the guarantor of the Constitution look closer at the elite. And Putin did not like what he saw.
A dog fat down to the limit, lying on soft bedding surrounded by choice meat. This dog is so lazy that it is almost incapable of biting painfully at anyone. This dog has got so bold that it obeys its master only formally. It is wigging its tail when necessary, but saying to itself “Generally speaking I don’t need you, master. I will have enough meat even without you!”
This condition of “a pet” does not satisfy Putin. That is why courses of Academician Pavlov’s electric treatment are prescribed to our good doggy.
The first “useful shock” for the elite is the return of gubernatorial elections and a mixed system of elections to the State Duma lower house of parliament. A second “useful shock for the elite” is a host of anti-corruption laws.
Not only the elite but the entire society were subject to impacts at the level of “Pavlov’s reflex” last year, the newspaper continues. Fight against “gay propaganda,” a tough sentence on Pussy Riot – what is behind these and other decisions of the authorities triggering widespread anger among Moscow’s “creative community”? The paper believes that not only emotions but also cold math. Outside Moscow, Russia is mainly a very conservative country at the level of instincts. It seems that the authorities have learned to brilliantly capitalize on these instincts.
However, not a most pleasant atmosphere in the society is the cost of this success. Obscurantists of every stripe feel much more comfortable than in any other moment of time over the past 25 years.
The Vechernaya Moskva newspaper marks that over his years in presidency, Putin has demonstrated one of the most vivid characteristic features of his political style – personal interference in the settlement of concrete problems, high-profile as a rule. Last year such a situation emerged after July’s tragic flooding in Krymsk, when the local authorities found themselves incapable of offering necessary assistance to the affected people without the president’s involvement, failing also the warning system. Often, Putin’s personal interference in itself causes a wide public and political response, exposing this or that problems.