Will all hell break loose in Russia within a month after the 2024 presidential election? [SEE DESCRIPTION]
Apr 17

A presidential election is planned in Russia for 15-17 March 2024.

This resolves YES if I subjectively think that all hell broke loose in Russia no earlier than 17 March 2024 and no later than 17 April 2024.

If the same level of oppression and censorship continues, it is not sufficient to resolve YES, even though the current level of oppression really sucks. The spirit of the question is about a sudden drastic worsening in the level of oppression, safety, quality of life etc.

Things that may be sufficient to resolve YES:

  1. Repression turning from targeted actions (even when there is a lot of targets) to blanket measures, Great Purge-style. A possible distinctive sign of this is a drastic simplification in the legal process of arresting and imprisoning someone, like the introduction of troikas in the USSR or the law of suspects in revolutionary France.

  2. Something triggering a new wave of mass emigration, such as a new mobilization.

  3. A drastic drop in the quality of life, such as a mass starvation.

  4. A return to death penalty, and its wide application. (Death penalty in Russia has not been used since 1996.)

  5. A significant political instability, such as a new rebellion attempt. (The last attempt was in June 2023 by the Wagner Group)

This is not at all an exhaustive list - just a couple of examples about the spirit of the question.

The intuition behind this question is that since unpopular measures are not to be taken immediately before the elections, something terrible might come after the elections are finished.

Since this market is very subjective, I will not trade in it.

If I'm not sure which way to resolve, I may or may not freeze the market, consult the traders, and / or resolve N/A.

Feel free to propose more specific criteria in the comments.

EDIT: After the Crocus city hall attack in Moscow, we discussed in the comments with @KongoLandwalker if terrorist attacks are in the spirit of the question, and count as "all hell breaking loose". I decided that the question is if said attack represents one random event or is part of a bigger story that represents larger change in Russia. So:

  • One terrorist attack may or may not be enough for a YES resolution, depending on factors like the scale of the attack, and other events surrounding it.

  • A chain of independent terrorist attacks (i. e. at least two attacks) is a YES if the attacks are all large enough (possible criterion: if the US embassy in Russia issues a statement calling it a terrorist attack, then it's large enough; here's such a statement for the Crocus city hall attack)

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I don't think so. But I recently came across a news on Russia's cancer vaccine.

What do you'll think?

@wadimiusz what is the position of the market about terrorist acts?

@KongoLandwalker Crocus city hall sure seems like a candidate for all hell breaking loose, but i won't immediately resolve YES. in any case, currently i intend to wait the month that i promised to wait, and judge from there. it's too fresh and i'm still too shocked, i will need a bit of perspective to decide how to resolve.

mostly, i'm thinking if i should treat this attack, for the purpose of this market, as one random event that didn't change anything systematically, or as part of some bigger change in russia. (e. g. maybe this is tied to a new mobilization, and the terrorists were very obliging in waiting until the elections are over...) i guess it also depends on the victim count, so let's wait for that as well.

i'm open to being persuaded either way.

@wadimiusz I do not think victim count should play any role. That is a random value, which depends on luck and preparedness of the attackers (and we will never know whether they wanted to maximise deaths).

But if another terrorist act happens before the end of the month I vote to count that as a YES resolution.

Two terror acts in a month is such a high frequency, that should not be treated as random, but as one that shows a change in russia's life.

@wadimiusz could you add to description, that two terror acts is sufficient for YES resolution? Is it in the spirit of the question?

@KongoLandwalker a string of, like, large attacks (Crocus seems large enough unless I miss something) is very much in the spirit of the question. i'm worried about just saying "two attacks" though, because you can pull some local news about someone trying to rob a grocery store with a gun and call it a small terror attack, or something.

i will try to use some hand-wavey proxies to estimate the scale of the attack, though. maybe the victim count, maybe something else.

it's fair to ask to specifically add that case to description, I think. i'll sleep a bit and figure out how to phrase it better.

@wadimiusz simple criteria: when U.S Embassy/government makes a statement, calling an event a terrorist attack, then we count it as a terrorist attack.

@KongoLandwalker yes, good idea!

@KongoLandwalker okay, I added some stuff to the description

Terroristic act in Crocus City Hall right now.

I think 2 is the most likely. How big does the emigration wave have to be to qualify? Will another 300k emigrating before the end of the year be enough to resolve this to YES?

@OlegEterevsky 300k sounds big enough, but the market is about just one month after the elections; so they’d have to leave before 17 April