Living it up with Russia’s shrinking “middle class.” Sulphur Island, St. Petersburg, 19 May 2018. Photo by the Russian Reader
Many people have been citing a 2008 article in Rossiiskaya gazeta.
“By 2020, Russians will be earning an average of $2,700 a month, a family of three will have no less than 100 square meters of living space, and the middle class will constitute over half of the population.”
This is a paraphrase of the “Social and Economic Development Strategy to 2020,” drafted at the time by the Russian Economic Development Ministry.
The article goes on.
“Experts have already dubbed the strategy a ‘breakthrough scenario’ that will see Russia establishing itself as a leading world power by 2020.”
The Economic Development Ministry was wrong, of course, but the experts were right. Russia has already established itself as a world power, albeit in roughly the same sense as North Korea and Iran. It has gone even farther. Iran and North Korea, at least, are not in everyone’s face all the time, while Russia butts in everywhere nowadays.
We should look for the root of the Economic Development Ministry’s mistake in the machinations of Russia’s enemies, of course, although the reason Russia has so many enemies is to be sought in the circumstances that also explain its promotion to the same league as North Korea and Iran.
That is the intriguing dialectic at work here.
Translated by the Russian Reader