To listen to American neoliberals (both “conservative” and “liberal”), one would think that Russians are rooting in dustbins for their next meal and living in hovels built before the Russian Revolution. Such is not the case… Russia is a fully modern country, with everything that the USA has (perhaps, a bit less in quantity, but it’s all there). Go to Russia and you’ll find a warm welcome and normal human beings as your hosts. That’s the long and the short of it all… VVP is NOT a “dictator” nor does he strut about like a Bargain Basement Mussolini as Trump, Rubio, Cruz, and Chilly Hilly do. Sure, Russia has its problems… plenty of ’em… however, it’s not trying to take over the world the way the Americans have tried to do since 1947 (they started the Cold War with their aggressive intervention in the Greek Civil War). Keep it focused.
Russia isn’t a Dump on the Outskirts of Hell… the USA isn’t Paradise on Earth… that’s the long and the short of it.