Monthly Archive: September 2002

DO BELARUSIANS WANT TO THE WEST?

As we could see from Table 1, a considerable part of our fellow citizens (almost 40%) would like moving to another country. And western, or west-oriented countries dominate the list of preferences. As for oriental countries, only Russia is mentioned. In a year its attractiveness for emigration has crept up from 3.6% to 4.3%. Hence, a significant part of Belarusians considers western values attractive, and they are even ready to leave the Fatherland.

LOCAL ELECTION – “SPIRAL OF SILENCE” UNTWINES

The elections to local Councils will take place in Belarus next spring. Only one fifth of the respondents knows when they are to take place. However, that does not mean there is no interest in these elections.

ATTITUDE OF BELARUSIANS TOWARDS THE INTEGRATION WITH RUSSIA

Based on the results of IISEPS studies, with a high degree of probability we could assume that regardless of numerous statements, A. Lukashenko and his team are unable to carry out the “new course” (including Minsk’s unexpected readiness to receive even the Pope!), being actively promoted by the entire state propagandistic machine. First of all because the president has no electoral resources for that purpose.

COLLAPSE. A. LUKASHENKO’S RATING CONTINUES TO FALL

This past spring IISEPS recorded a slump in A. Lukashenko’s popularity rating – from 46% in October to 30.9% in April. Such a “collapse” (as the president would say) caused various processes both in domestic and foreign political markets – from public dismissal of members of the Belarusian government to fundamental changes in Russia-Belarus relations. We shall remind that right after V. Putin’s statement on June 14 about the necessity to “separate flies from cutlets” the President of the Efficient Policy Foundation G. Pavlovsky said literally the following: “With respect to the Union there is such a notion “political correctness”, because we all know that the rating of the Belarus president is falling.

BULLETINS INFOFOCUS № 9

E-bulletin of IISEPS Center for Documentation, N 9, 2002 (only Russian) Content: Introduction Topic of the month: Draft law “About freedom of confessions and religious organisations”: ordering the relations of state and church or creation of state religion? BPUM and BUM: united komsomol Person of the month Boris Nemtsov: deportation as the answer to right …

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BULLETINS “IISEPS NEWS” N 3 (25) SEPTEMBER

IISEPS News, N 3 (25), 2002 Content: Preface Strengthening Role of Independent Social Research and Experts’ Network in Belarus: Results of a national public opinion poll Open Forum: Alexander Fadeyev End to Staging and Beginnnning of Integration? Bookshelf: Irina Bourina, IISEPS Pavel Severinets. “Malady Front Generation. History of Youth Born in 1970-1985” Preface: Dear readers! …

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TO THE ISSUE OF LAND

What Belarusians are guided by in their uncomfortable life? Why the overwhelming majority keeps silent about the absence of progress in the sphere of economy and living standards? We shall run the risks of assuming that fear is the most significant factor determining such behavior of the majority of Belarusians. A too big part of public life is under the state, it regulates public relations too rigidly, it thrusts its leading and guiding role too actively. It resulted in a low independence of the majority while solving their life problems, concern about their future and humble expectation of manna from authorities (See Table 1). As we could see, less than one third of the respondents (30.3%) is optimistic about job problems, whereas 45.3% are pessimistic in this respect and have to hold to it.

WILL PRIVATE BUSINESS HELP BELARUSIANS?

What Belarusians are guided by in their uncomfortable life? Why the overwhelming majority keeps silent about the absence of progress in the sphere of economy and living standards? We shall run the risks of assuming that fear is the most significant factor determining such behavior of the majority of Belarusians. A too big part of public life is under the state, it regulates public relations too rigidly, it thrusts its leading and guiding role too actively. It resulted in a low independence of the majority while solving their life problems, concern about their future and humble expectation of manna from authorities (See Table 1). As we could see, less than one third of the respondents (30.3%) is optimistic about job problems, whereas 45.3% are pessimistic in this respect and have to hold to it.

WILL LABOR UNIONS BECOME THE SUPPORT OF AUTHORITIES?

As we know, during the 2001 presidential election a part of labor unions elite, previously loyal to A. Lukashenko, tried to play against him. Although the attempt failed, that was enough for the authorities to understand the potential force of the largest public organization of the country and how efficient a skillful application of such potential could be.

SLOGAN OF THE DAY – RELY ON YOURSELF. THE MAJORITY OF BELARUSIANS DOES NOT BELIEVE IN POSITIVE CHANGES AND RELIES ON THEMSELVES

Social optimism is the indicator determining the current condition of the society. Obviously, sooner or later Belarus will have to face painful economic reforms, which should be carried out with knowledge of the population’s possible reaction at the situation when the ability of each person to help himself is key to success.