Liberal democracy is closing down – time has come for Lithuania’s Putinisation

Vladislav Surkov and Vladimir Putin
AP / Scanpix

According to V. Surkov, the Western countries are using the democratic institutions on the surface to hide the non-democratic network of the real government – a deep state. In Russia, however, the power framework of the most brutal state is openly visible, not covered up by any architectural details.

“There is no deep state in Russia, because it is there for all to see. However, there are deep state folk, – claims V. Surkov. These folk only trust the leader of the state. National institutions are used to facilitate a link between that person and the citizens, and are as important as the connection they provide. If the foolishness or corruption of officials damages that link, head of state begins communicating with people informally, bypassing the elites, and undertakes actions to rebuild that link.

The contemporary Russian state model, according to scholars of Putinism ideology, starts with trust and is dependent on it. This is the core difference of the model compared to the Western one, which “cultivates criticism and distrust”. But enough about Russia; let us turn to what is happening in our country and see if the rejection of V. Surkov’s proposition on the “export potential” of Russia’s political system and Putinism is valid.

A claim is made in a note from national security department and the 2nd operative service of the National Defence Department on contemporary dangers to national security. It states that Russia is failing to influence strategic political decisions, however, Moscow will continue attempting to middle in the country’s home affairs. However, while these institutions may catch, for example, recruited individuals who are working in Russia’s favour, they may not necessarily notice how putinistic ideology is slowly permeating politicians and the public.

“Haters, trolls and evil bots have now made up a vocal majority and pushed out previously dominating and highly esteemed middle class”, – writes V.Surkov about the West, though this fits equally well Lithuania. Lithuania is the West, though our democracy has limited experience in defending its values, and the yet-to-develop middle class did not have enough time to develop into the backbone of democracy.

Wasn’t it the disappointment with the functioning of liberal democracy that led to the election into the government of Ramūnas Karabauskis and Saulis skvernelis, along with an entourage of random characters? The scandal of the Vijūnėlė manor that crumbled the ratings of Algirdas Butkevičius LSDP party, while the brandy box of Eligijus Masiulis raised the curtain on the darkest corners of the deep state. At that very moment, a perfect and trustable character came onto the scene.

All of the communication of the Lithuania’s Peasants and Greens party, especially with the advent of 2019-2020 elections marathon, is based on the basis of putinistic ideology. The folks trust the prime minister and the parliament majority, but corrupt elite and the media are ruining the cooperative effort between them. During the prime of his rule, Putin also demonstratively squashed the opposition-supporting oligarchs, though no one yet had the courage to compare the cases of Michail Chodorovski “Jukos” and “MG Baltic”. Ramūnas is posing on the tribune with a whip in his hand just on a single thought how good would it be for the ecstatic nation to be hit by it. Reduce the size of the parliament, disperse the globalists from national television and constitutional court – this is what you have always wanted, and not the wage rise somehow lost in the mess that is the tax reform.

The police state and aggressive speaking tone of prime minister S. Skvernelis is the same “brutal national power framework” which is glorified by v. Surkovas. There is no shortage of enthusiasts that want to contribute to the creation of Russian national state model; and if somehow we run out of professionals, there will also be more to find in the depths of the country.

Russia no longer needs to send ‘green men’ or break into the computer systems of the national home office, because the ideology of putinism, same as described by its creator, has already been successfully installed in the heads of all those vying for leadership positions, and in the heads of voters. Liberal democracy is closing.

Translated by Darius Mikulėnas

You may like