miketheterrible wrote:Russia's major problem how I see it is it's too top heavy in power. Like you said, regional leaders are stupid and incompetent. Most rely on the main halls of the Kremlin to come up with all the ideas and allocation of money while they sit there, twiddling their thumbs and waiting for their check.
I know constitutional changes is supposed to help fix that, but it will take a long time it works.
Some regions have great leaders. Most don't
I disagree with the top heavy. It is just a sad fact of human life that the corruption increases as the scale of the government gets smaller. Municipalities are the most
corrupt layer of government everywhere
. That is partly because they deal with activity that is prone to corruption but is also due to the fact that all the
eyes are fixed on the head of state and not various mayors. In Canada, even provincial premiers get way more attention and scrutiny than local leaders. Various
NGOs are also more effective at influencing the municipal elections and policies since they are closer to the so-called "grass roots" (which they really aren't). You
can see this same influence in Russia where NGO shenanigans help liberasts get into office.
So Russia functions as an independent state with an effective economics policy and substantially lower corruption than in the west because the regions and their
internal structures are on a relatively tight leash. You propose giving the lower levels more power. That will only pump up corruption. In the US we have the
absurd "state rights" BS which before the FBI enabled crooks to escape the law by crossing state boundaries and to this day ties the hands of the federal government
over important elements such as health and education. If you want to help fragment Russia, then give the local leaders more power. The USA is a melting pot,
but Russia is a multi-ethnic composite tied to ancestral lands.
As for local initiative, why are you looking for local government to be its source? It is private citizens who are the source of initiative. And we see this in
Russia. In fact, it is the big bad central government that is the guarantor of such freedom of action. If people were left at the mercy of local politicians,
then we would see total rot.
Russia has a good thing going for it. It has no provinces or similar to US states. In Canada we have the shell game of pass the buck between the federal
government and the provinces. And absurdities such as Alberta acting like it owns all the oil and gas on its territory and preventing any rational national
energy policy. Canada has less trade between provinces than the trade between the provinces and the USA. So western Canada exports oil but
eastern Canada imports oil from abroad. A total ludicrous situation. Unfortunately Russia has developed quasi provincial structures instead that are
the source of corruption. They are not needed and should be removed. But that is hard to do when they are tied to local ethnic groups.