Dmitry Mikhailichenko, politologist
A sociological fact that requires interpretation: the level of social anxiety during covid was an order of magnitude higher than now, during the special operation in Ukraine. This suggests that all the consequences of the special operation and geopolitical confrontation are not reflected on and are not sufficiently understood by the society, which, however, is expected.
Most citizens perceive processes from the point of view of everyday consciousness, that is, awareness of possible risks for themselves and their loved ones here and now. The pandemic came to every home, brought a lot of losses and hardships, and, of course, increased the anxiety of society. But with regard to the special operation in Ukraine, the vast majority of citizens behave as if nothing is happening, but what is happening does not concern them. Although sociologists are registering more and more complaints about the high cost of prices for essential products, these processes are not always directly linked in the public mind.
The current phenomenology of non-participation / non-involvement with declared support is the basic algorithm for perceiving the situation, which allows the majority of society not to experience constant anxiety and concentrate on solving personal problems. It is not so much the lack of empathy and the atomization of society that works here, but the unpreparedness for long-term planning. But, first of all, such moods are caused by the realization of the impossibility of changing the situation. Plus, the situation is amortized by the level of patriotism, which is objectively present in a significant part of society.
The majority of Russian society, including the so-called. deep people, short planning horizon: in the current realities, when there is simply no attractive image of the future, this helps many to avoid excessive anxiety. Here, in its purest form, the stoic philosophy works: to endure and not worry too much about what does not depend on you.
It is obvious that such fatalism, sooner or later, will flow into quietism: since everything is predetermined, then nothing needs to be done. And not only in politics, but also in other areas, for example, in the economy. However, centuries-old algorithms for the survival of Russian society in adverse conditions speak against this trend, which require not passivity, but economic activity.
This dialectic of apolitical quietism and the need for economic survival will work for the further alienation of society and power, as well as for the expansion of the gray zone of the Russian economy, although now, at the moment, the opposite trend is observed.