Russia's Mad Scientists
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  • Jim.

    Does the decline of Russia’s population explain the stagnant nature of its science community?

  • higgins1990

    “…that (Russia’s) administration is so palsied and corrupt that it can’t manage the influx is a sign of just how deep Russia’s problems go — and of how hard it will be to change course.”

    Bureaucratic entanglement was in Russia before the revolution. But corruption intensified under 80 years of communist rule. Corruption is seen at every level of society. To deal with it, among other things, overall wages need to increase. Also there needs to be a judicial system that operates under rule of law (instead of a law of rules), a system in which citizens, business owners and entrepreneurs have a modicum of good faith.

    When Putin came to power he tried to force the other 80 governors outside of Moscow to adhere to the federal code. The governors were so entrenched, and so powerful, that they pretty much did what they wanted. So Putin assigned seven “super governors” with the authority to fire and replace any governor that was not implementing reform. But it was, for the most part, business as usual. Nepotism is as rampant as corruption. “Elections” don’t mean a thing. How many governors were fired? Zero.

    So then Putin had the Duma pass a law that gave the president power to replace governors. How was this reported in the West? “Putin is like Stalin!”

    There are ongoing efforts to fight corruption. Progress is small and incremental and often unnoticed. But it’s a viscous cycle here: Corruption -> bureaucracy -> stifled economic growth -> more corruption.

    Those who think that Putin is the problem don’t understand Russia.

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