Russia is a land known for its harsh conditions and even harsher rule. Since Rurik first founded Russia, its people have shrugged away until recently from democratic ideals. Russia has lived political ideals,that seem as out of date as their fashion. What has the failure to grow and change with the times cost Russia? It may never be known, because from Rurik to Putin, Russia has seemed to alter, but always return to the same ideas and policies. They gravitate towards those that offer power to a singular ruler and have swayed away from power to the citizen’s of its country. Small changes have occurred from ruler to ruler, as in the case of Ivan the terrible (1547-1584)to Peter the great(1682-1725). Ivan was an oppressive ruler who kept the russian people poor and without power from the serfs to the nobility. However, Peter excelled russia, bringing in Western european ideas, fashion, military tactics and political ideology. Peter gave the people more power and allowed Russia to grow as a country, whereas Ivan IV,kept both Russia and its people from growing in any way(textbook). The same patterns are seen as we move into a more modern day russia, with Lenin and Stalin. Lenin wanted means of production to be in the hands of the people and raise the standard of living for peasants and the lower class. Salin wanted the government to own means of production and forced lower class peasants to live on group farms (slideshare.com). Although Russia has recently become a democratic country, their system is heavily flawed and Putin has extreme power over the decisions being made. Overall, though russia may fluctuate from time to time in their choice of leaders, they will most often return to the same political ideals, which tend to be any policies that limit the power of the russian people. Russian economy has fluctuated severely in the past several decades. At the height of its power, the family of the Tzar was the wealthiest family in the world. However, in a study done by York University, of the Russian economy, research stated that the gross domestic product of russia had halved as of 1990, causing it to be thrown back into the category of a country in economic development. A country, once categorized by its socio-economic power, dropping to a developmental state in a matter of years. In the final years of the soviet union, it was estimated that the difference between the rich and the poor, held a four to one ratio. As of 1999, the ratio was estimated to be approximately a 15 to one ratio, and that the top 10% of Russians generated an annual income of up to 14x that of the poorest 10% as well as an unemployment rate of approximately 13%. This is a familiar state for the people of Russia. Although the unemployment rate in Russia has dropped in recent years to around 7.5%, the gap between income of the richest and poorest people has risen. As of 2007 the rich were shown to make 17x that of the poor(wikipedia) from the Tzar to the serfs and the richest to the poorest of today’s modern Russia, there has seen little real change.