So Boris Berezovsky, larger than life datapoint in the answer to the question of where it all went horribly wrong in post Soviet Russia has been found dead in his bath in London. His relatives say it was suicide. Good obituary here. Obviously, one should always be a bit suspicious of wikipedia, but Berezovsky’s wiki has what looks like a solid account of his rise and fall, containing this wonderful line:
Three months later Listyev was assassinated amid a fierce struggle for control of advertising sales
And here is a glimpse of Boris’ personal philosophy:
As for undue influence, our critics should not forget that a strong civil society and the middle class that serve to protect democratic liberties in the West do not exist in Russia. What we have are communists - still too powerful - and ex-KGB people who hate democracy and dream of regaining lost positions. The only counterbalance to them is the new class of capitalists, who, under extraordinary circumstances, find it acceptable - indeed, necessary - to interfere directly in the political process.
Well, it’s a bit hard to generate a ‘strong civil society’ in a place where seven oligarchs control over half of GDP. It also apparently didn't stop him trying to fund the Russian Communist Party, at least if you believe Eduard LImonov. But there you go. Limonov continues:
Abroad, in Great Britain, he is forced to exist without conflict, in order to preserve himself from a Russian prison. He wants badly to go out of that golden cage of London, again go to exciting life of conflicts in Russia.
He certainly litigated a lot while he was here, but that must hve been kid's stuff by comparison. So who knows, maybe he did eventually give up and kill himself.