But if it really was regression, the means there were issues the culture was reverting to childhood in order to avoid. To understand what they were, you first have to understand ...
Can a Decade Be a Megalomaniac?
The '80s were the product of a long, psychologically complex staring contest between America and Russia. The U.S. was coming off a losing streak following the Iran hostage crisis, and economic malaise of the late '70s. The problem was that they were in a zero sum mind game with a country that didn't play by the same rules. If the Kremlin decided to send out an economic report claiming Soviet engineers were converting Moscow's sewage into precious metals, they didn't need to worry about whether the Russian people believed it. Who were they going to call bullshit to? That's the advantage of state-controlled media.
Your rubles fuel the Soviet Union's immortality!