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Changes or Coming of a New "Cap"?

Changes or Coming of a New "Cap"?
Baranov Anatoly 03.10.2010

So, Luzhkov is dismissed, epoch has ended - no matter how you treated it. I treat it badly. All the time - mere Luzhkov's appointment as the chairman of the Moscow Executive Committee of the City Soviet of People's Deputies almost right after triumphal democratic elections in the Moscow Council seemed inappropriate concession of capital bureaucracy, pledge of future Thermidor. Actually it really followed. Right after this appointment I wrote in "Moscow Komsomolets" that "lampposts" wait for new executive power of Moscow. Naturally, relations became bad.

I liked the Moscow Council with all its mad 500 deputies as it was real live representation of Muscovites in power. As a matter of fact casual selection. As though pair of trams in rush hour was taken - and placed into boardroom. At the same time I never liked executive power in the capital as it was clear at first sight that it would steal and would make to thank it for remains from the lordly table which from time to time fell to "John Browns". It happened as I thought. I am not speaking about democracy, self-management and other things.

They started stealing almost at once. I will only remind about scandal with sale of Square of Gagarin sold to the French builders for symbolical sum - something like 99 dollars.

Almost at once there appeared a conflict between the Moscow Council and the Moscow Executive Committee of the City Soviet of People's Deputies, it should have appeared the same way as the conflict between the Supreme body of RSFSR and elected chairman Yeltsin. Presidential elections and simultaneously elections of the mayor of Moscow were carried out to solve the conflict. The president got emancipated from the parliament, the mayor - from the Moscow Council. At the time I was the Press Secretary of the Moscow Council and opposition took place not simply before my eyes but with my direct participation.

In a year after elections the first mayor G.Popov unexpectedly for many (and absolutely predicted for the few) retired having transferred reins of management to vice-mayor Luzhkov. Mayor Popov for the time of his reigning completely destroyed the Soviet control system of the city, having created instead of it present, by recognition of Popov himself, less effective system - to clean the power from communists (surely he didn't consider the nomenclature called by him to power the communists). Instead of 33 districts the city was divided at random into 10 prefectures, at that prefectures simply bore executive powers, they have no councils and other representative bodies of power following the plan of "democrat" Popov. By the way, this scheme remains till this day.

Later the Moscow Council, according to the law, appointed new elections of mayor three times, while executive power simply ignored decisions of representative body and didn't carry out elections. Luzhkov continued reigning as acting. Well, after October, 1993 he became absolute master of Moscow - the Moscow Council was dismissed and new capital parliament under complete control of executive power - the Moscow municipal Duma "was elected" on its place.

All history of this organ - is not decent. To begin with preparations for elections of this new organ was absolutely illegal - there was emergency situation in the country, laws didn't act. Elections for the Constitution which we have today were ahead.

It was decided to place "toy Duma" in a building of the former Sverdlovsk district committee of party. There was not enough space there, therefore it was decided that it's enough to elect 33 deputies for 10-million city. It is clear that it's not possible for such deputy to meet all voters for the term of the cadence even one time. That is tribunitian function of the deputy initially profaned, only legislative and representative remained.

It's clear that after shooting of the House of Councils and show performed by all provincial departments of OMON Muscovites had no desire to vote for candidates known to very few and only in two districts candidates received pro voices more than "against all". So the first structure of Moscow City Council was simply co-opted by the decision of the electoral committee. Under the new constitution the first structure of MCC was elected for 2 years as transitive but later candidates who were not elected by anybody prolonged powers to themselves for more 2 years.

Naturally, it was easier for the elected mayor to work with such deputy case, than with deputies of the Moscow Council, even uncontrollable but anyway elected by Muscovites on real elections.

Luzhkov didn't dare to run in the elections for very long time forming among townspeople image of "great figure in cap" and diligently suppressing every alternative to himself, no matter what political camp it presented. Only in 1996 he dared to participate in first independent elections - there and then Luzhkov got 89,68% of voices of Muscovites. It is clear that since then all "elections" in Moscow were compared only to Uzbekistan and Turkmenia.

Further is known well enough. Absolutely authoritative style of board was generated in Moscow and Muscovites don't imagine at all that it could be somehow different. Therefore Putin cancellation of elections of mayor was apprehended quite easily - we never elected him, if not to consider farce with casting ballots with obviously predictable result "elections".

Whether it can proceed for long?

They are quite unanimous in the Kremlin and on Tverskay, 13 - it can proceed for ever! It is explained quite cynically - say, "cattle" isn't capable to decide own destiny, it should be helped by certain, goodness knows where from appeared "shepherds". Thus they forget at all that they should thank Moscow "cattle" for establishment of present way of things which opposed dominations of bureaucracy (not socialism as they try to convince us). Yes, bureaucracy having changed its appearance won but it resulted in refusal of progress and transformation of the political nation into crowd of inhabitants wishing only "bread and circuses". There will be no modernization without returning to political nation the same way "slaves with huts" didn't take roots in ancient Rome. Freedom in choice including political freedom is necessary condition of modernization - only change of speaking bums under same cap can take place without it.

Therefore any modernization should be begun from democratization of political system - and first of all in the capital.

Otherwise it's absurdity - the president will bring a nominee of the new mayor for approval of Moscow City Council which represents nobody and has been in general created by "removed" from power for loss of trust mayor. It is clear that present "deputies" will vote for every candidate who will be offered from above, they can't act differently, as they worry only about preservation of themselves in the present status. New appointment of mayor will be dirty - it will be dirtier, than former one!

Today the party "Native Land - Common Sense" already holds meetings of voters to recall deputies of the Moscow Municipal Duma and to require prescheduled re-elections of this nobody representing "representative" body. Vladimir Resin - skilled bureaucrat, nothing will happen during his board, so it is possible to wait a little with appointment of new "cap".

In principle the president should represent the new mayor of Moscow to already new legislature elected already by some clear and transparent rules so that elections of new deputies don't cause questions about their legitimacy. Surely there should be not 33 but minimum 5 times more deputies, in fact today 1 deputy should sit in 3-4 commissions.

Certainly, it is necessary to return back to elections of the mayor of Moscow - probably, having accurately shared his functions with the prime minister of city government who should be appointed by capital parliament. For example, to register that elected mayor represents to Moscow City Council a nominee of the prime minister in coordination with the president of the Russian Federation. In any case the mayor of the capital should be elected, if we talk about some democratic country organization.

It is necessary to reorganize control system of the city, first of all to form representative elective body in each prefecture so that citizens could solve questions according to the place of residence - after all the Moscow prefecture as a matter of fact is almost million city. What could be done without representation?

It is necessary to do something with local government system in Moscow - in such castrated form it's simple mockery at the idea of local government. It, by the way, Luzhkov's direct inheritance, in due time he entered into the Charter of the city the item stating that the city of Moscow is ... the subject of local government in Moscow. The charter was corrected later but practice remained.

It is necessary to enter practice of city referendum widely - it's absolutely forgotten thing during Luzhkov's long-term board. Probably, even to enter the item about obligatory annual city referendum into a city Chatter. It's not so expensive, as it may seem. I am not talking about plebiscites which, considering almost universal coverage of Muscovites by Internet, is possible to carry out even every week - it in respect of modernization would be the beginning of transition from archaic representative democracy to direct participation of citizens in management.

Well, a lot of things is necessary to do but the main thing - to return to citizens possibility to control their lives without burdensome intermediary of the whole host of bureaucrats iconizing "cap".

The rest of Russia, as usually, will follow Moscow...


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