Der russische Föderalismus unter Präsident Putin: Diskurse - Realitäten

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I have developed a way of a) systematically constructing a list of quotations of a political actor that transports the main elements of his political concepts, but at the same time with a minimum of redundancy (actors discourse as part of the general discourse), starting from discoursive events (Link), moving on to so called "diskurstragende Kategorien" (Link) and using the possibilities of computer-based search methods; b) analysing what exactly the elements of the political concept consist of and how they (more or less logically) relate to each other - using different ways of reconstructing semantics by analysing political discourse. By doing so I approach political discourse from a perspective of "applied" discourse analysis: I concentrate on finding out what the political concepts of the actors are by analysing political discourse. Additionally I combine analyses of the verbal and of the actional component of politics. Thus my approach could also be called "Dispositiv-Analyse" (Jäger/Foucault). The political discourse of federalism in Russia under Putin was established mainly via the actional and verbal interaction of the most relevant actors, that is, Putin - who is trying to change the situation that has developed in the Yeltsin-period - and the governors - who, especially in the year 2000, tested out the "boarders" of politically "acceptable" discourse under Putin. Some of them, as a consequence, are no longer governors of their region. Others have begun to talk about federalism in quite a different way than they used to. Putin has reached discursive hegemony in this field of political discourse (this seems to be of high political relevance in Russia). As a result of this interaction, a new general concept of federalism has evolved in Russia, so that we now really can speak of "the" Russian discourse of federalism.

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... It mostly remains in the realm of the rational choice analysis, although it goes without saying that also the nature of academic and social discourse on Russian federalism and post-Soviet integration was completely different and hence was able to influence the results of the development (cf. Tsygankov, 2003, for post-Soviet space, and Fruchtmann, 2003, for Russian federalism). Hence, the contribution of the paper is threefold. ...
The paper compares the development of two institutional systems organizing the intergovernmental relations in the former Soviet Union: Russian federalism and post-Soviet regional integration. In spite of common origins, random selections of actors and common development trends in the first decade of their existence, in the 2000s both systems experienced significant divergence. The paper discusses the interaction of four factors explaining differences in the development of post-Soviet integration and Russian federalism: formal vs. informal nature of political property rights of elites; impact of economic asymmetry on political bargaining; role of (potential) federal political arena in terms of interests of territorial elites; and impact of large business groups. It also addresses direct links between the centralization in Russia and the regional integration in the post-Soviet space.
Russland beschreitet seit dem Amtsantritt Präsident Vladimir V. Putins in der Politik der administrativen, wirtschafts- und sozialpolitischen sowie fiskalischen Gestaltung seiner Föderation neue Wege. Auch wenn Putin — insbesondere zu Beginn seiner ersten Amtszeit — stets bestrebt war, die Kontinuität und angebliche Stabilität russischer Politik herauszustellen, auch wenn er sich dabei vielfach auf die fortgesetzte Autorität der Verfassung berief und jeglichem „Revolutionismus“ abschwor, auch wenn die meisten Institutionen des russischen Föderalismus ihrem Namen nach unverändert geblieben und auch wenn sehr viele der regionalen Akteure nach wie vor „im Spiel geblieben“ sind — es muss inzwischen von einem grundlegenden Wandel des russischen Föderalismus ausgegangen werden. Der Rückblick auf die Föderalpolitik unter Präsident Boris N. Jelzin, der in diesem Artikel durchgeführt wird, wird dies deutlich zeigen. Dies bedeutet jedoch nicht, dass die föderalpolitische Konzeption Putins kontextfrei „von der Blaupause“ entwickelt wurde. Im Gegenteil: sie ist und bleibt bis heute in vielem von ihrem historischen Ausgangspunkt — dem Erbe der „revolutionären“ Periode — geprägt und nur in diesem ihrem historischen Zusammenhang wirklich zu verstehen. Daher ist eine eingehende Betrachtung der föderalpolitischen Bedingungen, die Präsident Putin zu seinem Amtsantritt vorfand, sowie der föderalpolitischen Gepflogenheiten im Umgang regionaler und föderaler politischer Eliten unumgänglich. Und sie ist möglich, da die chaotische revolutionäre Phase — die Periode der Präsidentschaft Jelzins — inzwischen auch in föderalpolitischer Hinsicht abgeschlossen, d. h. Vergangenheit ist.
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REVOLUTIONS, for Pareto, were above all a matter of elite change.1 And for many there was a revolution in this sense in Eastern Europe at the end of the 1980s, with changes in government and a shift towards pluralist and democratic politics throughout the region. Several years on, the change looks less decisive. Former communist parties have returned to power in Hungary, in Poland, in Lithuania, and in Bulgaria. In Romania, there has been a change of leadership but less clearly a change of political regime. Former communists maintained their position in Serbia and in Slovakia, and-with a change of nomenclature-in most of former Soviet Central Asia. In Russia itself the Communist Party left office, but it revived in early 1993, polled strongly in the elections in December of that year, and was by far the largest party in the Duma elections that took place in December 1995. The Russian public, for their part, remained committed to the concept of a USSR; they rated their political system less highly than the one they had experienced in the Soviet years; and in any case they thought the communists were still in power.2 There were differing views about the extent to which communists or former communists were, in fact, still in power throughout the Central and East European countries. There was relatively little direct continuity in the Czech republic, where the communist party quickly became a marginal force,3 and only a limited degree of continuity of leading personnel in Poland.4 In Russia, some argued similarly, there
In Russia's lingering constitutional crisis, struggles over fiscal politics have taken on a broader institutional significance - at times even threatening to undermine the federal state. This article studies the evolving fiscal relationship between Moscow and the regional governments in the early post-Soviet period. To explain why some regions currently receive large net transfers (subsidies, grants, other benefits) from the centre while others pay large net taxes, net central transfers per capita have been regressed on a range of predictors reflecting social 'need', preferences of central politicians (electoral interests, pork barrel allocation, policy objectives) and lobbying capacity of regional governments. The most significant turn out to be three bargaining power variables that signal regional discontent and credible resolve to threaten economic and constitutional order - a low vote for President Yeltsin in the 1991 election, an early declaration of sovereignty and the incidence of strikes in the previous year.
Since 1991, the Russian system of federal intergovernmental transfers has moved from equalizing to counter-equalizing, both in the case of regional revenue equalization and in the case of regional personal income equalization. This change happened despite increasing revenue and income differentials and despite an introduction of a special equalization fund in 1994. The counter-equalizing effect has been weaker in real terms than in nominal terms indicating that regional price differentials have impicitly been taken into account. The main reasons for increasing counter-equalization seem to be: (i) a relatively small share of transfers in the budget and GDP; (ii) flaws in the equalization formula resulting in the lack of sufficient focus on the poorest regions; and (iii) a non-transparent character of other transfers redistributing often to the most politically powerful regions. The major recommendations for the future are (i) to increase (dramatically) the transparency of expenditure assignment, and (ii) to keep the system simple.
In this essay we identify economic and political factors that led both the federal centre and the regions in Russia first to open the process of federal bargaining and then to pursue it in the form of signing bilateral treaties, unique for each region. Many Russian politicians and most scholars of Russian politics view asymmetric bilateral bargaining as a dangerous institutional choice contributing to federal instability and potentially threatening the disintegration of Russia. We offer an alternative view. While the treaty-signing practices are actively maintained by Russian political elites, we argue that the genesis of asymmetric bilateral bargaining in Russia had a strong `path dependence' component. In particular, it was precipitated by the developments of the last period in evolution of the Soviet federalism.