Russia's dictator may have eliminated one threat to his power, but he just created fresh ones. And the cracks in his regime are starting to show.
If humanity survives the climate crisis, I wonder how many centuries it will take for dictatorships to become democracies.. Thank you for clarifying why democracies are stronger. That gives hope
This was a solid article to wake up to on Ukraine’s Day of Independence. I sent it to my partner, currently in Kyiv, and she fully agreed.
I loved your paragraph about democracies being strong and loved your last paragraph. Wonderful piece. Thank you.
The idea of the “dictator trap” is a great example of a repeated game where the best response is to double down on violence and purges for the dictator, and the best response of others is to present the dictator a vision of the world increasingly divorced from reality.
But the beauty of repeated games is the nature of the equilibrium can change. Why? The payoffs for those other than the dictator shows decreasing returns over time. At some point the best response becomes one of rebellion because they have nothing to lose at some point.
Thus, Putin has now pushed us ever closer to the new equilibrium by taking out one of his chosen inner circle. The payoff to playing along with Putin is much smaller now and it is only a matter of time before it all falls apart.