Frankly, competently, without populism: politicians on the «straight line» Putin

© RIA Novosti / Michael Clientgenerated in Photobacterium of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin answers journalists ‘ questions after the annual Straight line to Gostiny Dvor. 15 June 2017Frankly, competently, without populism: politicians on the «straight line» Putin© RIA Novosti / Michael Clientgenerated the image Bank

The fifteenth «straight line» the President of Russia Vladimir Putin took place on 15 June and lasted for nearly four hours. During its head of state answered 73 questions from the received more than two million.

RIA Novosti asked the experts in the field of political science and sociology with the question of what, in their opinion, was Central to the maintenance of this «straight line» and why.

The informal institutions of the political system

Most importantly, the «straight line» took place, despite the fact that earlier it was moved. And now we can confidently say that it has become a kind of informal institution of the Russian political system, the Executive Director of the Russian public organization «Russian society of political scientists» Igor Kuznetsov.

«The main thing that caught my eye — a balance of all the topics that concern the society. In the territories, according to population categories, according to themes. The result was extended to all social groups concerned about these or other issues, without bias and highlight something essential to the detriment of everything else. Similarly, a balanced form of communication: in person, by Skype, by SMS. The result is a feeling of complete and objective coverage of the audience,» shares the Professor.

And still a main topic of the «straight line» delineated by itself. Whether it was about the birth of children, or on pensions, or about jobs — somehow they dealt with the problems of demography, said the scientist.

«Indeed, we have done much to ensure that demographic trends have purchased a solid, positive character. And made real, tangible result. Our birth rate is increasing at a rate which is today, for example, in European countries, and when I say this, many of my colleagues are surprised and, honestly, sincerely enjoy it,» — said Vladimir Putin.

«It was likely unintentional, it happened, but the problem of solving demographic problems in the near future really becomes key. The difficulties of the 90s, the demographic collapse, not born, the population — all this is now starting to affect us. Necessary a huge complex of measures from the government, in order to overcome the consequences of the phenomenon of depopulation, we are going through. And the President is clearly and explicitly outlined this task,» — says Oleg Matveychev.

«There were, of course, questions about the salaries and the pensions. But the overall trend is that social needs in the field of this perspective begin to shift from the monetary sphere to the quality of life — medical care, state of the environment, social infrastructure. On the one hand, this is perfectly normal, I’d say the European trend, but, on the other hand, it significantly increases the responsibility of the state and makes the upcoming presidential campaign more interesting from the point of view of the image of the future», — said the expert.

In this regard, it is very important that the President during a «straight line» is very focused on the need to reform and improve the style of governance — at both Federal and regional, local and municipal level, she said.

«We need to make significant adjustments in administrative forms, and administrative forms at the level of municipalities, regions and the whole country. Here we definitely need a major transformation in quality control. This is a small but very important list of tasks that will be put in the near future», — said Vladimir Putin.

«It sounded and then when the President spoke about the need to update the governors about the change in the approaches in public administration, improve its efficiency and effectiveness», — says Ekaterina Sokolova.

«A mass rally or procession, people take to the streets we are often perceived as a disaster. But in a democratic society it is natural. When in Rome, anarchists once again throwing flares the building of the Ministry of defense, is a bad thing, of course, but every two years it happens. Protests — a side effect of democracy, the reverse side of the coin. We have for many decades lived in an atmosphere of total consent and approval, because it scares us,» — said the expert.

«I am ready to talk with everyone who are really focused on improving people’s lives, aims to solve the country is facing problems, not to use the difficulties — and difficulties always and everywhere — for their own political PR. Use the difficulties as a tool for self-promotion, in order to cash in politically on these difficulties, only exacerbating them,» — said Putin.

According to Vyacheslav Smirnova, he was glad that the President is not advocating further politicization of social protests in the country, had no desire «to let go of the reins» or «tighten the screws» and by the way that many feared. And emphasizes that it intends to continue safely engage in basic everyday work — economic development and improvement of state institutions.

By itself, the format of «straight line» in the form in which it exists today, is an unprecedented tool for the study of public opinion, which has neither one, even the most powerful sociological service in the world. A high level of representativeness of the study almost three million questions to the President, gives the authorities a unique opportunity to really learn and understand the lives and aspirations of the people of Russia, says Dmitry Abzalov.

The analyst encouraged by the fact that the President, as he claims, was not only the most candid in communicating with the audience, but and avoid populist gestures. So, answering questions of inhabitants of Balashikha about them poisoning the life of the dump, he did not go for the simplest way to manage to eliminate the dump, and spoke in detail about the programme for construction of waste treatment plants, which is currently undertaken by the government. And about the systemic problems in this case faced.

«This suggests that the head of state is not trying to flirt with people, making «the king’s» gifts, and leads him in serious conversation on equal terms,» — said Dmitry Abzalov.

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