So my mother is Russian, her side of the family ran away during the revolution and civil war not to get killed so I keep up with news about Russia and I would say the show is put on for gullible fools. Since 1 in 5 people are in not able to afford bread poverty it's a show of strength so that the people don't revolt, and if you look at their news the government they make it look like they have the only functional army. As far as everyone stealing yeah that's very true you can literally get away with murder for between $100-$1000 depending on which part of the country you do it in. I think doing something different with Russia rather than treat them as a de facto enemy is one way to improve things, and when things are better and people have more they will have more to loose and therefore start being less of a threat but that's just my opinion.This follows a time-honoured Russian tradition, best exemplified and known in the so-called “Potemkin villages”. A show is put on for gullible fools.
Economic projects don’t work out to plan, because if the State is built upon lies and officially sanctioned theft, then the populace at every level will also lie and steal at every opportunity.