T Nation

Vladimir Putin Running for Third Term as President of Russia


#1

So, I just read on Yahoo! that former president of Russia, Vladimir, Putin, is seeking reelection for a second time, which is against Russia's constitution. Thinking back on his "iron-fisted" policies, this kind of makes me think that Russia will fall back into it's Communist and Socialist ways. Does anybody else think the same thing? And as an American, what does this mean to me and the rest of the world?

CS


#2

It's a factually sketchy area. According to Russian law a president can stand two consecutive terms. Which Putin has done. He has served as Prime Minister since on which there is no legally imposed time in office. To run for a third non-consecutive term has never been done before and is a legally grey area.

For Russia Putin is great, for the rest of the world looking in, not so much. But this is all appearance.

From my experience I don't see Russia going back into any of its passed incarnations. The US and Russia have more in common now than ever before. But lots of people on either side completely fail to see this.

What this means for the rest of the world:

Continued military build up in Russia, but nothing to conduct over aggressive foreign policy yet.

Continued economic expansion, this will be the biggest point on any agenda. This will also lead to any domestic Russian opposition being further sidelined. Not a bad thing IMO.

If anything more playing ball (in terms of economics) with the EU.

More debate between US and the CIS of nonsense like semantics and ideology.


#3


In 2008, Medvedev had an amendment to the Russian constitution made that extends the Presidential term of office from 4 to 6 years. Obviously a deal was made whereby Putin allowed Medvedev to run so long as Medvedev agreed to make the constitutional amendment and stand aside after one term. Putin likely intends to remain in office until 2024. I predict disaster.


#4

Why though? Why is Putin always seen as such a bad character? Has no one else noticed that Russia is on the up and up?


#5

Hmm...


#6

And that is an argument in favour of what exactly? No one knows with the Litvenenko case.

Half of it was speculation, half of it was spin on the part of a corrupt, displaced business man.

I'll run with you a little on this one though, assuming the Russian executive power wanted Litvenenko dead, why use an arbitrary radio active material? London is not unknown to be a violent city, there were easier ways of doing it, especially when you have the kind of people at your disposal that the Kremlin does.

This is just another case of emotive arguments being made without knowledge of the subject matter or facts.


#7

Russia doesn't have a really great economy, without it's vast resources it'd look really grim.

There's no way socialism will be reinstalled anytime soon.
Rich cocks have carved out a VERY nive niche in mother Russia, tapping into that gas and oil.
Expect no change whatsoever.

Putin is all the mnasses will and can hope for.
Playing the occasional no-nonsense-bearing-down-hard tzar, breastfeeding his buddies the other 90% of the time.

Russia has had HUNDREDS of critical, political journalists beaten bloody/shot/killed in the last years.
It's practically the last country, apart from jolly lands like North Korea or Iran, where you want to pursue a career as a political journalist.
But let's forget that, because it still can be a great place to strive for economic or personal freedom, right?


#8

Actually everyone knows. Including the UK Police who have issued arrest warrants for the murderers - former KGB goons who poisoned him in London and left polonium-210 traces all over London and Germany. One of them even poisoned himself by mistake and fell into a coma. Anyone who follows public events already knew anyway - e.g.

  • The hisory of Berezovsky/Litvinenko/Putin dating back to the early 90's

  • The Viktor Yushchenko poisoning

  • The defenestration, shooting, stabbing and bashing to death of hundreds of journalists.

No it's not. Do some research.


#9

Ummm... What?

If a country derives the majority of its GDP from the services sector it has a great economy. In the case of Russia that figure is around 60%.

Industry makes up around 36%. Therefore the majority of Russian economic development does not come from natural resources.

Russia also has the highest number of millionaires per capita if I remember correctly. And its forcast GDP growth is currently higher than the US. So yes it is a great place to strive for economic freedom.

Bare in mind before Putin became president of the CIS the ruble liquidated under Yeltsin. Do I smell a win yet?

Also people seem to forget the reason Putin is hated so much is because he expelled big business from Russian politics.

Hundreds of journalists? I love how the figures on this are compiled. Take who was president at the time and cross reference it with the number of murders of people who happen to be journalists and then claim correlation.

As for cocks carving out niches for themselves in industry, well thats bound to happen in a free market economy because privatisation is an index of democratic freedom after all.


#10

Ummm... What?

If a country derives the majority of its GDP from the services sector it has a great economy. In the case of Russia that figure is around 60%.

Industry makes up around 36%. Therefore the majority of Russian economic development does not come from natural resources.

Russia also has the highest number of millionaires per capita if I remember correctly. And its forcast GDP growth is currently higher than the US. So yes it is a great place to strive for economic freedom.

Bare in mind before Putin became president of the CIS the ruble liquidated under Yeltsin. Do I smell a win yet?

Also people seem to forget the reason Putin is hated so much is because he expelled big business from Russian politics.

Hundreds of journalists? I love how the figures on this are compiled. Take who was president at the time and cross reference it with the number of murders of people who happen to be journalists and then claim correlation.

As for cocks carving out niches for themselves in industry, well thats bound to happen in a free market economy because privatisation is an index of democratic freedom after all.


#11

You miss the point. Where is the correlation between the murder and Putin? Anyone could have had ex KGB goons do this.

Look at the former CEO of Lukoil who we all know was targeted by Putin, he wound up in jail for life. Much cleaner and more efficient.


#12

I wouldn't call assassination of rivals, cult of personality, regional bullying, and selling arms to Iran (and anyone else who has the cash), "all appearance".

But that's just me.


#13

If you seriously want information on how such numbers are complied (although I don't think the previous poster was speaking in specifics) I'm sure the information is on the "reporters without boarders" website. "Transparency international" is also a good place to look for information about corruption in general.

Here, I looked up the Russia page: http://en.rsf.org/russia.html


#14

Russia is as much democratic as I am black. They replaced socialism with capitalism, but kept the police state.
Offcourse they call it democracy, but calling something democratic doesnt make it democratic. Just think
about DDR( old east germany aka the democratic republic of germany ), It had democracy in its name, but
Nobody in their right mind would ever call "stasiland" for a democracy.

My point: Russia has still some work to do before they are a real democracy and putin is creepy as shit.


#15

Putin (as Prime Misister of Russia) is still in charge. Medvedev is just a putin meat puppet. In my humble and mis-guided opinion...


#16

yup and he will reign until 2020 i predict.

Russia is fucked as we Brazilians are with PT and Lula.


#17

this just means that Russia will continue to follow the same path it's been on both politically and economically for the last 10 or so years - shadow of the evil empire soviet union used to be back in the day, still trying to be a force, although being unable to compete with US/NATO on their level - resorting to petty "anti-american" stuff along the lines of selling weapons to Iran etc etc.
sadly though, this is what most Russians want from what I understand, so in a way it's all "democratic" - the people are getting the ruler they want.


#18

Versus what alternative? Nose dive into theocracy? Being corrupt puppets of the USA ala Yeltsin? Becoming an outright kleptocracy state?

Say what youw ant about Putin/Medvedev but the guy brought order and dignity back to Russia. Russian went from being the butt of the West's jokes to being a great power, and a regional / energy superpower. Living conditoins have done nothing but rise, and optimism is probably at the highest point its been since Brezhnev.

I am skeptical of those who claim Russia isn't a democracy, because people do vote and the andiddates who get in do win by those votes. All notable international monitoring agencies have said the actual elections in Russian aren't corrupted.

I suppose the anti-Democratic aspect is the fact that the Kremlin thins out the political playing field to those they deem acceptable. How is this different than the Corporate-MIC-Bank-AIPAC zaibatsu we have controlling US politics? Have you noticed men like Paul are pre-blocked from real candidacy and it is shown that way on Fox News and the like, yet Romeny/Perry have already been pre-selected by these media puppets of big corps?

Further, the outright fraud involved in the 2000 election makes Putin's reelection look like a cakewalk. If you want to call Russia undemocratic, perhaps turn the mirror on the USA first, before allegating elsewhere.


#19

Who's saying Russia is "undemocratic" ? I don't have any doubt that in a free election Putin would win over any other candidate by a huge margin so you can take your scepticism elsewhere.
What I don't like is in their pathetic bid to appear to be a super-power they used to be once (although it appears that there was a fair amount of smoke-and-mirrors there as evidenced by USSR's rapid collapse), they are resorting to cooperation with anyone who is perceived to be "anti-western".
Alternatives? Don't really care what they do internally.


#20