Will protests break out in Russia over the economic crisis?

Scorpion

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December 29, 2014, 06:30 am
Will protests break out in Russia over the economic crisis?

By Anna Borshchevskaya, contributor



Russia's economic crisis continues to deepen. Yet on the surface, it would appear that Russian President Vladimir Putin's approval ratings remain high, and Russia's citizens are determined to stand behind their strongman. But is there more to it?


I wrote last month that Putin's approval ratings will not remain high indefinitely as Russia's economy plunges into a recession. So far, the economy is only getting worse. Indeed, Russia's former finance minister, Alexei Kudrin, warned on Dec. 22 in Moscow that Russia is facing an economic crisis. "Today I can say that we have entered or are currently entering a full-blown economic crisis; next year we will feel it in full force," he said. As the crisis deepens, Putin is expanding the military budget, rather than investing in education and infrastructure. Russia's own current finance minister, Anton Siluanov, publically complained about this.


Russia's ruble continues to plummet. Financial experts now say the Russian ruble has been among the year's worst-performing currencies. On Dec. 26, 54 rubles traded against the dollar. Compare this to last year, when the nominal exchange rate, according to Russia's Central Bank, remained between approximately 31 to 33 rubles to the dollar throughout the year.

Russia is also facing high inflation. While some experts predict inflation may move into the double digits in 2015, as I wrote last month in The Hill, it may already be there in certain select and critical sectors of the economy. Inflation is a particularly sore point for many Russians, especially those who lived through the turbulent years of hyperinflation in the 1990s. For many, fear of inflation is both real and psychological.

Yet Putin's approval ratings so far remain high. As a recent Levada Center poll showed, Putin's approval rate stood at 85 percent in December, despite the currency crisis. This is roughly the same rate as in November, before the currency crisis ensued, though still slightly lower than the 87 to 88 percent approval ratings recorded in earlier months, closer to the start of the Ukrainian crisis.

Consider another December poll, however, by Kudrin's Committee of Civil Initiatives, which found that, as reported by Russia's Moskovsky Komsomolets, "perceptions of President Vladimir Putin are changing — the country's residents still do not see an alternative to him, but subconsciously trust in him decreases." This does not contradict the Levada poll, but rather supplements it with a deeper analysis of what "approval" for Putin entails in Russia. In addition, if in the beginning of the year, Russian citizens associated Putin with a powerful animal such as a lion or a bear, they now, according to the study, associate him with those of less stature, such a wolf, a lynx or a hare.

The study also finds that the majority of Russians continue to primarily trust the Russian television when it comes to sources of information, and that is where the Kremlin exerts the most control. Yet the negative trends in the economy force many to search for alternative sources of information, such as the Internet and social networks, where it is possible to find views opposing the Kremlin.

The study's authors predict another wave of protests in Russia, this time because of economic troubles rather than political discontent, as was the case in 2011 and 2012.

There are no guarantees that if they happen, these protests will necessarily bring about democratization — indeed, Russia has seen a rise of nationalism and xenophobia in recent years, while Putin has successfully convinced many Russians that the West is to blame for their problems. But this study shows that Russian citizens will not stand for an economic crisis forever, nor a leader who presides over it.

Will protests break out in Russia over the economic crisis? | TheHill
 

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The Russians are having a really bad time. |0|

I hope their economy crumbled. A payback for supporting the child murderer of Syria and for intervening in Ukraine.
 

hiddenwolf

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With the kind of government Russian has I doubt there will be very much of a protest. If there are protesters I'm sure they will be dealt with quickly.
 

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With the kind of government Russian has I doubt there will be very much of a protest. If there are protesters I'm sure they will be dealt with quickly.
Putin won't allow any form of protesting. He will use the military the crush the protesters.
 

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The Russians are having a really bad time. |0|

I hope their economy crumbled. A payback for supporting the child murderer of Syria and for intervening in Ukraine.
For intervening in Ukraine? Is this some kind of joke? |0|

Yeah, let's hope Russia crumbles so US of A rapes and pillages every Arab country left....
 
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Putin won't allow any form of protesting. He will use the military the crush the protesters.
Yep, pretty much this, Russia is no longer a democracy, was it ever one? So Putin does exactly what he wants and he does crush any voice that opposes to it, no matter how rich it is.
 
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December 29, 2014, 06:30 am
Will protests break out in Russia over the economic crisis?

By Anna Borshchevskaya, contributor



Russia's economic crisis continues to deepen. Yet on the surface, it would appear that Russian President Vladimir Putin's approval ratings remain high, and Russia's citizens are determined to stand behind their strongman. But is there more to it?


I wrote last month that Putin's approval ratings will not remain high indefinitely as Russia's economy plunges into a recession. So far, the economy is only getting worse. Indeed, Russia's former finance minister, Alexei Kudrin, warned on Dec. 22 in Moscow that Russia is facing an economic crisis. "Today I can say that we have entered or are currently entering a full-blown economic crisis; next year we will feel it in full force," he said. As the crisis deepens, Putin is expanding the military budget, rather than investing in education and infrastructure. Russia's own current finance minister, Anton Siluanov, publically complained about this.


Russia's ruble continues to plummet. Financial experts now say the Russian ruble has been among the year's worst-performing currencies. On Dec. 26, 54 rubles traded against the dollar. Compare this to last year, when the nominal exchange rate, according to Russia's Central Bank, remained between approximately 31 to 33 rubles to the dollar throughout the year.

Russia is also facing high inflation. While some experts predict inflation may move into the double digits in 2015, as I wrote last month in The Hill, it may already be there in certain select and critical sectors of the economy. Inflation is a particularly sore point for many Russians, especially those who lived through the turbulent years of hyperinflation in the 1990s. For many, fear of inflation is both real and psychological.

Yet Putin's approval ratings so far remain high. As a recent Levada Center poll showed, Putin's approval rate stood at 85 percent in December, despite the currency crisis. This is roughly the same rate as in November, before the currency crisis ensued, though still slightly lower than the 87 to 88 percent approval ratings recorded in earlier months, closer to the start of the Ukrainian crisis.

Consider another December poll, however, by Kudrin's Committee of Civil Initiatives, which found that, as reported by Russia's Moskovsky Komsomolets, "perceptions of President Vladimir Putin are changing — the country's residents still do not see an alternative to him, but subconsciously trust in him decreases." This does not contradict the Levada poll, but rather supplements it with a deeper analysis of what "approval" for Putin entails in Russia. In addition, if in the beginning of the year, Russian citizens associated Putin with a powerful animal such as a lion or a bear, they now, according to the study, associate him with those of less stature, such a wolf, a lynx or a hare.

The study also finds that the majority of Russians continue to primarily trust the Russian television when it comes to sources of information, and that is where the Kremlin exerts the most control. Yet the negative trends in the economy force many to search for alternative sources of information, such as the Internet and social networks, where it is possible to find views opposing the Kremlin.

The study's authors predict another wave of protests in Russia, this time because of economic troubles rather than political discontent, as was the case in 2011 and 2012.

There are no guarantees that if they happen, these protests will necessarily bring about democratization — indeed, Russia has seen a rise of nationalism and xenophobia in recent years, while Putin has successfully convinced many Russians that the West is to blame for their problems. But this study shows that Russian citizens will not stand for an economic crisis forever, nor a leader who presides over it.

Will protests break out in Russia over the economic crisis? | TheHill
I think it's only a matter of time before people start protesting about the state of the economy. From a personal level,i think the problems bedeviling the current state of affairs are solely about the top brass:the presidency and his advisers.The decision to send Russian army to Ukraine was misadvised and doomed to fail. The sooner they accept this the better.
 

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For intervening in Ukraine? Is this some kind of joke? |0|

Yeah, let's hope Russia crumbles so US of A rapes and pillages every Arab country left....
Since when Russia is the defender of Arab countries?|0| The Russians are walking with cold bold on their hands and they shall see the day where they pay for their crimes.
 
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I am not sure what will happen. One one hand, people can only take so much but on the other hand, Putin is a monster and I bet Russians are terrified of what he and his government could do. Only time will tell whether people continue to swallow Putin's lies or strike back. It's sure to be interesting!
 

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Since when Russia is the defender of Arab countries?|0| The Russians are walking with cold bold on their hands and they shall see the day where they pay for their crimes.
Nobody said Russia was defender of Arabs genuis. You are giving impression that US/West are supposed to be alternative by aligning us with their policy in Ukraine. Which is scary, no Arab would promote ties with killers of good people. We don't and will never betray God. Your few Arab nations are supporting enemies of God. Which is dangerous and requires immediate Jihad against Kafir rulers who promote Satanism.
 

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I really don't think that anyone other than students and the younger generation would dare to protest in Russia. You could get thrown in prison for years if you try to speak out against their government. Just look at what they did to that girl band Pussyriot. They went to prison just for playing music in a church!
 
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I sure hope they would. Putin is a dangerous man, however. I can see the destruction in his eyes, he can't even hide it. I guess you have to be somewhat ruthless to rise to the top in a country like that.
 
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I think Putin thrives on his popularity. What he has been doing is to put himself up as a hero. Now, if the Russians were to stop hero-worshipping Putin, it may make him feel bad. Making Putin feel bad can be a good thing.
 
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It's very unlikely protests will occur, which is why Putin is trying to 'sort out' the tax on vodka to appease the people. History has shown that life is difficult for those who do protest and also their families, so many resort to the black market. Currently the situation is in the hands of the banks and given that other countries like Japan are in recession, the world economy as a whole is unstable. The economists strategy failed and now they have to find another solution. Protesting won't stabilize the economy.
 
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Too early for protesting .I agree there are some countries suffering from oil's low prices and their economy fallen down such as Iran but I think it's just the beginning nothing happened yet .
In Russia case ,the Rubel is continue decreasing and I think it will reach to very low limits thats will effect very badly on people's life , so for previously moments Russians will appear the loyalty for Putin to show some resistance....Then the remaining endurance will end up in a specific time .

I hope the world's economy goes back to its normal state because when the pocket is empty tourrables coming .It's too early for the 3rd war.:,(
 

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