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Thursday, February 15, 2018

CEC against the film about Putin: the triumph and tragedy of Ella Pamfilova

The Chairman of the Central election Commission of Russia Ella Pamfilova has successfully passed the “test of Churova”. Having the chance to say that Putin is always right because he is Putin, Pamfilova this chance is not used. CEC actually ruled in favor Sobchak and Yavlinsky, who found a rerun of Oliver stone movie about Putin on the first channel TV illegal pre-election campaign.

photo: Natalia Muslinkina

Officially Pamfilova, however, said that “signs of propaganda in the film”. But this is the case when important, not the reasoning of the decision, and its essence. Based on the principle that “Caesar’s wife must be above suspicion”, the Commission recommended to defer further showing the series of the film until the end of the campaign.

So, from a formal point of view, campaigning for Putin ceased to be in Russia obviously safe occupation. First “reprimand” for excessive zeal in the support of the GDP received a presidential mouthpiece Dmitry Peskov. Now in a similar situation turned out to be the key channel of the Federal TV. Really in our country began a peaceful political revolution?

No, in any case not started. The real balance of forces within the Russian state system has not changed one iota. It is in any case not talking about the fact that the Kremlin has turned into an ordinary participant in the electoral process. The idea is that the Kremlin went public on the conscious self-limitation: can not publicly boast of his power, as it was fashionable a certain number of years ago, and began instead to pretend that he plays by the same rules as all.

It is easier to go on about modern fashion and to describe it as a “farce”. But I don’t want to go on about the now former “candidate in presidents of the Russian Federation” Catherine Gordon, who withdrew his candidacy because, they say, “election is a farce”. The President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev have a favorite phrase that on different occasions he likes to say to his followers: “Dig deeper!”Say that phrase and I: let’s try to dig deeper! Let us abandon the labels and try informative to understand the essence of what makes Ella Pamfilova. Here is my own “excavations”: although Pamfilova not to change the essence of the Russian electoral process, it does a lot to change his style.

What was wrong with the predecessor Pamfilova in the Central election Commission of Russia Vladimir Churov? The fact that he did not feel his position, did not understand what is required from its owner. Unlike many Russian politicians who say one thing, think another and do the third, the supervisor, from my point of view, has always been quite sincere. Churov has not acquired a fortune in the public service. He was an honest eccentric, which public opinion took over a hardened cynic – were his own fault. Predecessor Pamfilova did not realize that statements like “the First law of Churov: Putin is always right”, inappropriate in the mouth of the Chairman of the Central election Commission. The supervisor did not realize that such formula is dropping the credibility of the Russian electoral process, discrediting the results of the elections in the eyes of the population. Did not understand — and so ultimately lost his job.

Of course, I realize: to use the phrase “lost his position” in relation to a person, who was the head of the CEC for nine years and put so record in modern Russia is a stretch. However, each stretch is only a fraction of the stretch.

In the period of the Marsh in late 2011, the Kremlin became clear that the appointment Churov was a mistake. In my opinion, the care of Churov, the CEC has been delayed until 2016 just to show: Putin defies pressure (Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Vitaly Mutko, as I suspect, is still held in the power clip in the power absolutely of the same reasons). My beliefs and suspicions, of course, can be wrong. But that’s about what two opinions cannot be: Ella Pamfilova was appointed to the CEC because in terms of its public image, she was the complete opposite of Vladimir Churov. The supervisor was proud that he Putinists. Pamfilova was proud of his independence. The government felt that in order to restore the credibility of elections requires that the CEC was led by such a person.

Did you get this calculation of the Kremlin? Not fully justified and could not be justified. Society instinctively felt that our elections cannot be “cured” by using only the replacement of the Chairman of the CEC. The audience instinctively understands the scope of restrictions, which forced to act, Ella Pamfilova. Understands and feels a certain sense of disappointment. There is another caveat. Part of the Russian opposition want only your “pocket”, the Chairman of the Central election Commission. This applies, for example, Alexei Navalny. Bulk know that, according to the letter of the law, Pamfilova had no right to register him as a presidential candidate, but still rained down on her head a stream of harsh criticism.

But I still see reason for optimism. I am glad that the government have come to understand the necessity of observance of external decencies. I am pleased that “splash” from the Central election Commission during the election period to obtain not only the opposition of “supporting actors”, but the entourage of the “main candidate”. Of course, all those “achievements” of which I speak, is hardly even a “steps in the right direction” – at best “steps”. However, the right direction is still a direction. With him you just have to stay. And then, maybe, little steps will turn into steps.

Or will not turn? At the time of this writing, the next series of the film about Putin is still listed in the program of the First channel and channel questions answered: “We have not yet received the official decision of the Central election Commission”. The speed with which official papers are moved from the center of Moscow, in Ostankino, suddenly acquired great political significance.

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