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Category: History

Corruption in the USSR and modern Russia

UDK 316 P-58

Mikhail Yuryevich Popov

doctor of sociological sciences, professor,

editor-in-chief of the magazine

"Theory and practice of social development"

Krasnodar, Arkhitektorov St., 113, apartment 4

Corruption in the USSR and modern Russia

This publication is devoted to the analysis of the Soviet model of the public and political administration in the USSR which, according to the author, initiated creation in this state of the corrupted society which basic principles of functioning received continuity and in Post-Soviet Russia.

In the 20th century the corruption became a heavy burden for political life of the Russian society owing to long process of transformation of a socio-political system in the country after the October revolution of 1917, Civil war as a result of which in the country the dictatorship of the proletariat was established. The political leadership of the Soviet Russia and the USSR for decades, setting for society a strategic task of construction in the country of communistic society - societies of general equality and prosperity, conducted continuous fight against the political opponents in the Communist Party for all completeness of the power both in party, and in the state. And the achievement of this communistic prospect as in a single country, and around the world became more unreal, the for revolutionary Marxists the subject of preservation of the power in the country and in community of the states professing communistic ideology for the sake of possession of this power under cover of revolutionary rhetoric, communistic promotion was more and more topical. For ensuring all completeness of the power, its continuity in the center and on places in the USSR the complex structure of political and public administration down and across was built, were constantly carried out & #34; чистки" in party and in authorities, loud political processes against oppositionists - "enemies of the people" to whom counterrevolutionary, anti-Soviet activity, wrecking in various spheres of public life, the espionage and other crimes which are allegedly directed to destruction were incriminated were fabricated

"first-ever state of workers and peasants". Grandiose social and economic projects like industrialization, the collectivizations, the cultural revolution accompanied with mass hunger, repressions against own people which victims were millions of our compatriots were opposed to "Intrigues of enemies of the people" by the power. As a result of these transformations in our country strictly centralized system of the political management functioning on the principles of one-party membership was created; the public administration subordinated to will of the party management both in the center and on places; selection and placement as which main criterion their devotion "to the ideas of proletarian revolution, communism and so forth" acted, which, first of all, was meant as personal devotion of the candidate for a post to the head, a group of persons representing the Communist Party. The education, knowledge of business did not belong to the criteria defining its professional suitability (we will remember a slogan: "And the cook can govern the state!"). It was substituted by the party-membership card, and later a set of the documents formally necessary for occupation of the corresponding position (the document on education, the recommendation of party fellows, etc.). Therefore to government came, generally the poorly educated, incompetent, but betrayed to "business of party" people ready to carry out any its decision without hesitation not only for the sake of preservation for themselves a post and the prospect of further career development and also for ensuring own safety and members of the family from "party cleanings" and repressions. Having adapted to conditions of the professional activity, "promoted workers" of party honestly scribbled denunciations of the colleagues, included them in lists of unreliable, clearing away in such a way to themselves a way to party and Soviet elite.

As a result in the USSR there was on the unique system of the government, ineffective, but very viable. The low coefficient of its useful effect was compensated by mobilization of multimillion human resources of rather free citizens and prisoners, total promotion for the sake of achievement of real and imaginary progress against the background of constantly going deep & #34; кризисов" world capitalism and also the repressive system of public administration in which device the people who passed through tough selection and business and time were recruited. They not only implicitly followed instructions of higher instances, but also pushings through on the top of" the colleagues were consolidated in hope for penetration with their assistance into more elite population groups with respect for all necessary legal and ethical standards in structures of this system on the principles of rendering each other mutually advantageous services, concealment of small violations of members of corporation, ".

The nomenclature system of public administration in the USSR

functioned in such a way that successful activity of the individual in a horizontal of the power naturally was followed by his promotion in a higher horizontal which was a source of additional material benefits, other social status and, of course, the new prospects of movement of higher step of an imperious vertical. And the individual needed to work these high-quality changes in career both honest work, and services to the benefactors whose "price" was commensurated according to growth of powers of authority of the person.

In our opinion, creation in the USSR to model corrupted both across, and down society which material, natural, human, intellectual and spiritual resources under cover of revolutionary, patriotic rhetoric by several generations of political adventurists were used for the sake of satisfaction of own imperious ambitions over the biggest across the territory and the rich on resources the state on our planet became result of genesis of a nomenclature control system of the state and political life of the Soviet society.

Corruption in the USSR allowed party elite to change real democracy for totalitarianism under the sign of the socialist democracy treated as democracy for workers and dictatorship for exploiters. The mobilization principle of the organization of economy in our country provided creation and functioning of military industrial complex, powerful armed forces, retaliatory law enforcement agencies which activity was aimed not only at protection, but also at providing own safety with the power in the state both from political opposition, and from possible mass protest actions from the population. For all mankind this system posed a continuous threat of export of world communistic revolution, and then and the 3rd world war.

Changes of the political management in the USSR from V.I. Lenin and his colleagues to "Khruschev's thaw" of 1956 were followed by repartition of the power, first of all in its top echelons, with the subsequent mass repressions against potential opposition.

1956 became a historical watershed in political life of the USSR and the international community is not casual. It is necessary to remember that change of the political management in the country after I.V. Stalin's death was also followed by L.P. Beria's execution and his immediate environment with observance of a minimum of legal formalities and on charges of high treason, wrecking, espionage, classical for the Stalin mode. But education on the European continent economic (Comecon) and the military-political (Warsaw pact) block of the East European states led by the Soviet Union demanded from its management of transition not only to less aggressive rhetoric, but also to demonstration before world community of commitment of the USSR to rules of international law. In domestic policy the new political country leaders also needed vigorous measures for adaptation of mechanisms of public administration and the state ideology to the changing conditions on several directions: recognitions of the fact of Stalin repressions with the organization of the procedure of stage-by-stage rehabilitation of their victims; half-open of "Iron Curtain" in cultural and humanitarian spheres. But these changes did not concern bases of the most political system in the organization and ideological ensuring its functioning, to what the program of creation of communism adopted at the XXII congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in our country on which implementation 20 years were allotted can serve as the evidence. Insolvency of this project became obvious quickly enough, but on its realization many means and efforts, including, and were spent for deception of public opinion on an occasion of the course of implementation of this program, for adoption of forcible solutions, for example, of taxation of personal subsidiary farms of the peasants who are allegedly distracting them from productive work in public sector, destructions of a livestock of the cattle for the subsequent selling of meat products through marketing for creation of effect of growth of abundance of products in the country. Reorganization of law enforcement agencies in the context of a program thesis about reduction of crime in the country in process of creation of communism. The deepest food crisis, growth of social tension in the Soviet society became a result of the first years of implementation of so grandiose project.

When in the 1970th years of the 20th century the utopianism of the idea of creation of communism in the USSR became the obvious CPSU adopted new "provision" of scientific Marxism: the concept of achievement of the USSR of level of the developed socialism as a natural stage on the way of creation of communism.

The attempt of the leadership of the USSR to maintain "gains of Great October" by means of the "reorganization" directed to democratization of political, economic, cultural life in socialist community when maintaining in it monopoly for the power to both the Communist Party, and Marxist-Leninist ideology became time completing a grandiose social experiment not only in our country ayv to Eastern Europe. But to give to socialism "human face" was a task so impracticable, as well as creation of communism in a single country in what not only the leaders of our country, but also other countries of "national democracy" made sure of Eastern Europe. Turned out to be consequence of reorganization not only disintegration of the socialist commonwealth, the USSR, the crash of Marxist-Leninist ideology, falling of the totalitarian modes, but also emergence on the world map of the new states which leaders proclaimed commitment to the principles of the western democracy, to universal values, thereby having officially separated from those public forces and leaders that represented the totalitarian modes and Marxist-Leninist ideology. But to trust these statements - the deepest delusion because for decades of the Soviet power in the USSR there was a high-organized and viable system of public administration on a vertical and a horizontal, selection and arrangement of the shots united by mutually advantageous obligations and interests capable to react instantly to changes in the policies arriving from the center and without fluctuation to accept unanimously in the environment or also amicably to exclude from it any "colleague" and "adherent" according to his team.

What image it managed to the political country leaders to create and it is constant kadrovo to feed a resource of this mechanism of management? Our way to opinion, the Soviet leaders could accept only the right version of the personnel policy in those historical conditions based on promotion to politically key positions of representatives of social bottoms irrespective of their general education level, but ideologically devoted to party, capable of implementation of any its decision. Same "moral substance" was fed in several key directions:

>- first, the persons who held senior positions joined in the certain official nomenclature built on the hierarchy ascending up. Belonging to it guaranteed besides quite decent salary a number of essential advantages before other citizens who represented a certain set of the social benefits: food and ware soldering, and later - a set of food products at the low prices, access to the closed distributors of consumer goods, office housing, medical and regular highly high-quality sanatorium care. It is natural that these benefits extended as to the head, and members of his families;

>- secondly, appointees were allocated with high powers of authority when the fate of people, the solution of the problems, vital for them, depended on them. And this set of the benefits, as well as powers of authority, was increased greatly in process of increase in the social status of the person who, in turn, took personal responsibility for the professional duties which are carried out by it.

And if it did not justify this confidence, then it was waited not only by dismissal from work, and excommunication from a nomenclature cohort with the subsequent exception of party and getting under repressions which soft form were the camp on & #34; перевоспитанию" guilty work on objects of the national economy, and more severe punishment threatened


execution on a charge of counterrevolutionary activity. Under repressions also family members who were expelled from comfortable housing got, and could, as well as the head of family depending on degree of its fault, also to send in the camp, and children - to orphanages.

Of course, in process of strengthening by revolutionary Marxists of the political power in the country and also as a result of some democratic transformations their pressure upon an elite part of society was softened, but the principle of "izgoystvo" concerning the persons which allowed what faults remained invariable until the end of existence of a one-party system in our state, as well as criterion on which career development of the official was provided.

In conclusion of article it would be desirable to focus attention of readers on the following conclusion: for decades of formation and strengthening of the Soviet power in the USSR there was a system of corruption, unique on scales and efficiency of functioning, which all "achievements", in our opinion, were fully used for the benefit of new political elite in the center and on the periphery not only in Post-Soviet Russia, but also practically in all states formed in the territories which were a part of the USSR. And the modern Russian power should put a lot of effort in the direction of fight against corruption which not only brakes the course of economic development of our country, democratization of the Russian society, but also stimulates its criminalization, and in total, poses a real threat of national security of Russia.

Stephanie Waters
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