It is one of Russia's oldest traditions to write directly to the Tsar when something goes wrong. Putin did not create this mentality. It is just a symptom of an authoritarian state that rests upon a giant, immovable bureaucracy.
The city which hosts the Olympics in 2014 and becomes a showcase of Russian international standing over the next five years is up for grabs. That elevates the mayoral election in a small resort town of Sochi to the national level.