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Russia 2018: Pension reform struck at the Crimean bridge

Россия-2018: Пенсионная реформа нанесла удар по Крымскому мосту

The Russians are waiting for the authorities do not report about the great achievements and social justice, which is not

The last week of 2018.

The Russians called the opening of the Kerch bridge event of the year, but this option is just 1% ahead of pension reform. Such data are contained in a new poll by the Levada centre “Events and evaluation of the outgoing year”.

In the study, people were asked to choose from the already available options, or call your. The survey was conducted 13-19 December among 1, 6 thousand people in 136 villages, 52 regions of Russia. The study was conducted at the home of respondents by personal interview. You can choose multiple answers.

For the opening of the bridge Kerch voted 47% of respondents, and pension reform in an event called 46% of the respondents. On the third place in importance for the Russians was the election of the President of Russia (37%).

Next comes the world championship on football in Russia (36%), a fire in a shopping centre, “Winter cherry” in Kemerovo (34%), shooting in the Kerch Polytechnic College (28%), the conflict in the Kerch Strait and the imposition of martial law in Ukraine (25%), military action in Syria (missiles of the United States, the collapse of the Russian reconnaissance aircraft IL and others — 22%). Protests against raising the retirement age was not included in the top ten, but finished 11th place with 16% of votes.

Says a sociologist at the Levada center Karina Pipiya, pension reform expected to become one of the main events of the year for the Russians. It led to the violation of “postkrymsky balance” in public sentiment, the growth of protest potential and the disapproval of the authorities.

However, judging by the fact that the opening of the Kerch bridge a bit ahead of raising the retirement age in importance in the eyes of Russians, “Crimean consensus” is still quite strong. Although, according to Pipia, this is largely due to the wide media coverage of the issue.

Many international events and even stories that had resonance in the media, not too interested in the Russians. Thus, among the least popular responses were poisoning Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the UK (7%), lock Telegram (6%), Brexit (5%), torture of prisoners in correctional facilities (5%), conflicts in Kabardino-Balkar Republic, demonstrations in Ingushetia against the changes of the border with Chechnya (4%), “velvet revolution” in Armenia (3%), hunger strike film Director Oleg Sentsov (3%), the trial of Kirill Serebrennikov (2%).

Karina Pipia believes that if some of these variants are associated with human rights or with international scandals were not already listed in the questionnaire offered to the respondents, they would be called even fewer people.

In addition to specific events, sociologists have asked Russians to compare the outgoing year previous. 45% of respondents believe that it was for Russia harder than 2017. In the past year thought so, 39% of the citizens. According to sociologists, events such as the ongoing conflicts in Syria and Ukraine, the tragedy in the shopping center “Winter cherry”, raising the retirement age has strengthened the idea of the Russians about the fact that this year was harder than the previous one.

Answers about how 2018 year has been for you and your family were a little more optimistic. 38% said that it was difficult, 13% lighter and 50% felt that it was the same as the previous one. Last year only 33% said they were more difficult than in 2016.

If we talk about estimation in General, the Russians consider it “average”. For this option voted 66% of the respondents. 16% said good and 13% poor.

Director of the Center for political studies, Financial University under the government of the Russian Federation Pavel Salin believes that these survey results indicate that international events have ceased to interest the Russians in the first place is a request for social justice and the welfare of the society.

— The pension reform from the public consciousness will not be erased. Therefore, power is very good that such a positive event as the opening of the bridge Kerch adjusted for statistical error, was comparable. In this population forgets about many things, including foreign policy. But in General, power is good, that the negative event is still balanced in the public mind positive.

— What is the “Crimean consensus” in society is still alive?

— I wouldn’t say that. “Crimean consensus” was that people had not just a positive attitude to this issue, but also an emotional lift. Now it’s just a statement of fact without emotion. The vast majority of the population recognizes the annexation of Crimea and realizes that to regain back it is impossible.

If the first two years, this fact has caused the emotional rise and emphasized in the public mind with an exclamation mark, it is now a common point. With the same success it is possible to say, for example, about the “Smolensk consensus.” If you ask a person whether Smolensk oblast is part of Russia, it is, of course, answer in the affirmative because it is something taken for granted. So with the Crimea. The mere fact of its stay in Russia is no longer an emotional lift, because it’s a habitual reality.

— 45% of respondents felt that this year was heavier than the previous, although the figures of Rosstat and salaries have grown more, and the economy showed itself a little better. What is the reason?

Due to the fact that the population is over margin. And as economic, that is, the money that has accrued up to 2015, and supply of patience. The authorities at the time were asked to wait three years and then it will be better. That’s three years expired, but became better not. People are now much more strongly opposed not only to the past but to the future.

There is a gradual change in the public consciousness, so the population is set to power was doing something here and now to improve the socio-economic situation. This is a new request to power in 2018, which next year will become even more important.

— Then the request for social justice will only grow?

— Of course. As I said, the population is over the “fat stores”. This largely explains the paradox, when there seems to be some salary has grown, and real incomes fell. People take loans, and then, together with interest give them, and it takes the whole modest revenue growth.

— So, external events are now not able to block the internal agenda?

— Yes, this break was planned for 2017, the year is now entrenched and will be even greater in 2019. the Government is well aware, no wonder the entire presidential campaign is built on the domestic political agenda.

Socio-economic issues will continue to dominate the public consciousness, unless there’s something out of the ordinary in the international arena.

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