Sisaket 'Cuban Missile Crisis"
Use mouse for rollover. Photos show interior of 30,000 Baht bomb/missile shelter built by Sisaket resident in anticipation of imminent hostilities breaking out between Cambodia and Thailand over the 11 November World Court decision on Khao Phrea Vihear sanctuary jurisdiction. Photos courtesy Manager Online.
8 November 2013
Our editor and founder was in Western New York back in the Kennedy Days during the Cuban missile crisis. He sees close parallels between measures taken by a few residents along the Thai-Cambodia border who have spent considerable sums in taking measures to prepare for imminent hostilities that some feel will soon break out between Cambodia and Thailand. Generally, however, it is widely accepted that such hostilities are not likely but that local sensitivities and activities may cause some unrest.
The Tomcat Cliff area addressed is right in the eye of the storm, and while local rumors in part indicate that some villagers on the Thai side might try to take steps to approach areas near the sanctuary that are prohibited to civilians, it is more likely that the local Thai military forces will be able to intervene successfully. So there is a lot of bravado involved in such so-called network claims that they will go in there and do it for the nation and so on. More real is the fear itself, though, that causes local unrest on the part of people who ha ve been involved in a war situation in teh past when such hostilities did break out.
Congressional Bill H.R. 1917 Lift Cuba Trade Embargo Now Circulating
In mid 2013, a formal bill was introduced into the US Congress to lift the embargo against Cuba. How do you feel about this? To lift or not to lift? Graphic [eyes modified] courtesy of ttnewsflash.com
5 November 2013
Editorial - take a break from current Thai political upheaval and ask a serious quest ion...
Cuba has been a bit of a problem for Washington even before the Spanish American War. The island nation, which was involved in a close nuclear confrontation with the United States back in 1962, is an inherent part of Latin America. Do you feel the decades-long US embargo against Cuba should be eliminated, or continued? This last May H.R. 1917 was introduced into the United States Congress to lift the embargo. How far will that bill go and should it get anywhere?
See Congressional link to the bill here. Latin America isn't anything to snivel at. Not that long ago Washington publicly stated that it was really interested in a reapproachment with Latin and South America. Of course the Establishment does ot like independent Chavez-type leaders who don't like US politicies and do things about it that we, as the US, cannot stop. That's not kosher so we boycott them or otherwise try to isolate them "on behalf of the world community." Not sure where the US got the impression that it speaks for the world or that the world wants it to. Well, on the latter we are pretty certain The World DOES NOT want the US to speak or act on its behalf. Such arbitrary actions, born out of Exceptoinalism and Proxy-by-Israel, are still getting us into trouble and will continue to do so until we get a handle on our own destiny and tear it away from hard-core extremists in Tel Aviv or New York, more the latter. firstname.lastname@example.org Ed. Comments are always welcome.
Has Halloween Caught On In LOS?
31 October 2013
The question is a bit tougher than initially thought. After all, in a kingdom where superstition is rampant and belief in ghosts and spirits is so widespread, can a secular holiday like All Hallowed Even catch on with neighborhoods stocking up on sweets and scary decorations like they do in Walmart-ridden areas of the United States?
Speaking of back in the US of A, many Americans are wondering whether President Obama's special Halloween present to the American people, the failed and criminally expensive healthcare website, is an ideal gift in the eve of the nation's scariest holiday (other than April 15, tax filing deadline). Was it wise to slam this burden on the American people and will the gross error tell its own tale in reduced Democrat victories in 2014 and 2016 elections?
How Much Is Official Malfeasance?
Several areas of the famous Khmer sanctuary district of Korat remain flooded and residents, including civil servants, having to use water transportation.Use mouse for rollover. Photos courtesy Manager Online.
Korat Post Editorial
31 October 2013
The only ones not looking to the left and right to find blame for Thailand's horrors in national and regional flooding crises after crises are those responsible for it - contractors, planners, builders, greedy vested interests, corrupt officials, selfish home and land owners and others, some with grand dreams of national development all being credited to themselves in their pursuit of lining pockets and exploiting Thailand's traditional lack of transparency,lack of accountability and lack of information.
As to the latter, lack of information, the trend has caught on worldwide, especially to the shores of the United States that used to have some semblance of transparency and accountability. No more. Listening to President Obama yesterday saying, paraphrase quote, "I take sole responsibility for doing what it takes to get the problems with the website fixed." This editor is unsure what taking responsibility means these days, at least to officials who don't take responsibility. Taking responsibility used to mean stepping off the podium, stepping down, quitting, taking some punitive measures like outside agencies or special investigators dropping by to find out, from an honest viewpoint and without interruption from internal vested interests, what really happened, how, who is responsible. And then, when they find out, someone gets fired. That's the way things used to be, or at least, used to be imagined to be.
Today, under the current administration which just happens to be Democrat but it doesn't matter, we see lips moving and no action. We see personal assurances of being responsible without any demonstration of responsibility. Should Obama quit? Perhaps not, but his minion, Kathleen Sebelius, should. She does not work, like she thinks, just for a president who won't fire her. She works for the American people. Politicians today have forgotten that important fact and what it means. Her apology to Americans was not even remotely sincere, read from some notes that a staff member gave her to mimic. Disgusting and worthy of getting her butt kicked - out. Headlines. email@example.com Ed. Comments are always welcome.
CNN says it was 187-3, Cuba's official headlines put it at 188-2. Does kowtowing to futility work,
even for the world's only remaining pair of political Siamese twins? Use mouse for rollover to see
PRESIDENT Ra?l Castro Ruz received on October 15, 2013, Dr. Tabar? V?zquez, former President of the Oriental
Republic of Uruguay, who was visiting Cuba.
Korat Post Online
30 October 2013
Frankly, visiting Ernest Hemingway's old hangout would not be the only reason this editor would like to visit Cuba. Just a short distance from the coast of Florida, the island nation has seen egg thrown in the face of its Yankee neighbor this year for the 18th consecutive year as the UN voted 188-2, more or less, to condemn the American embargo against the communist state. Memories of the Cold War and still smoldering anger or domestic political pressures from Cuban immigrants and political opponents of the regime there?
With the Unites States at least paying lip service to a new regional policy of cementing relationships with Latin America, Cuba is in an ideal geographic position to prove the point and drop the embargo the US has had in effect for nearly half a century. Such a move would not make the Cuban die-hard anti-Castro anti-communist lobby happy, but would go a long way toward warming hearts of the entire region, save some in Venezuela perhaps, that the American giant is sincere in playing equality with its much smaller and weaker neighbors. But what the recent UN vote has revealed is a portend of bad things to come, with the US and Israel, two never-give-up Middle East quagmire allies, consoling one another over this embarrassing defeat. But defeat does not mean anything if it does not mean anything. A vote is a vote and sure, we'll go through another one like it last year, but it is notable even to Washington Stink Tank planners that our position toward Cuba is untenable and unrealistic.
Cuba is full of promise. A proud and historically rich culture, physical proximity and strong centralized government (remind you of Washington these days?) the potential for business, tourism, economic, cultural and educational development that enriches both the United States and Cuba is plain and clear. The benefits for dropping the embargo and in declaring Cuba an old and renewed friend would go a long way in helping to convince not just our Latin American neighbors, but many, many Americans that our foreign policy is heading, at least in one case, in the right direction and there is hope on the horizon. . firstname.lastname@example.org Ed. Comments are always welcome.
Government Spy-proof Internet Now!
Commotion and Several are only two applications that offer facility to be online without state interference. You need line-of-sight (dish) communications.
Korat Post Online
29 October 2013
Government belongs in and on my computer, home or personal life just like skunk cabbage belongs in the family salad - it doesn't! The question used to be how to avoid it. Now answers have arrived. The lie in the way that line of sight communications was first established and continues to work in the world of satellites and microwave.
What’s the Commotion?
More accurately, what’s ‘Commotion’ and how does moving from wire mesh era methodology to wif-fi mesh help you stay out of Uncle Sam’s reach?
It’s hardly a Shakespearean “Much Ado About Nothing.” In fact, ‘Commotion’ and other line of sight telecommunication meshes (in this article meaning independent internet networks) are relatively simple methods that 2001 Space Odyssey author Arthur C. Clarke described. He predicted and suggested satellite communications well before writing the epic novel, outlining systems that would work in much the same way that we are today reviewing utility of establishing a permanent Moon communications base and network. The difference between contemporary Internet and this independent mesh - which has replicates in different countries - is that essentially neither the government nor others is privy to what is transmitted between them. This is just one way that privacy-minded netizens are finding to avoid unwanted and unjust snooping by their government, and it is said to work!
The technology is, as mentioned, rather dated in simplicity but still works well. It’s the same line of sight technology that ground-based stations use to broadcast and receive signals from similar stations. And it’s the same between ground-based stations and satellites. Mesh dishes are lined up to send and receive and do so with basically little or no interference from snoopers. Such spies would have to be able to be at the same exact receiving point used by the subscriber. This is usually not viable. Obviously users have to be living in countries where such communications and associated equipment are not prohibited or outlawed – this is an important point given the increasing inroads that even governments in so-called democratic or “free” societies are making against freedom of expression and personal privacy.
Do these meshes really have subscribers and are they getting protection and satisfaction? Apparently so. In Spain there are said to be over 20,000 users all happy and operating in privacy. email@example.com Ed. Comments are always welcome.
US Spying Is MAD; Allies are Mad
Is there no limit to the audacity, indeed, the trite baseness, of American government today?
Korat Post Online Editorial
28 October 2013
Anyone who thinks Edward Snowden is anything less than a hero and deserving of a constitutional pardon (court-ordered) needs to reflect on how the American government is screwing over its own people, and everyone else in the world, through relentless information prying and unwarranted spying.
Just what is taking place inside the United States these days, and beyond its borders stretching around the world is shocking, repugnant, illegal and unwarranted - unless you intend to overthrow all landmarks enshrined in the United States Constitution and take over the government in a way that kills freedom in the Land of the Free forever. This scenario is no longer just a peripheral cacophony from the gun-toting left and right, but seems more and more a sign of the times. The American government is finally taking some heat from angry European allies like France, but perhaps more emphatically Germany which is sending a personal high level delegation to Washington to ask Obama "What the hell is going on with you guys?" A bit more diplomatically, perhaps, at least in the public media. Europe has been quick to reinforce the impression that America and Europe are still in love and arm in arm, but how can the revelations that the US administration has tapped and taped European leaders' phones and other conversations and data? And where does that leave the peon American citizen faced today with increasing inroads into his freedoms by government gone wild?
As an American citizen this editor does not plan to divest himself of US citizenship, but it is easily understandable when I say that I do not want my damned government in my affairs, I do not want my damned government prying into my business or my communications or my financial information. Not unless it has a legitimate reason, and that rationale was done away with a long time ago even prior to the reviled Patriot Act.
As an American living abroad, I now have to take whatever personal steps I can to keep US government spying out of my affairs. Writing more frequently online and to my congressmen is called for, but so is advocating for changes to the way American officials do their jobs and how they harass, demean, violate and denigrate their fellow citizens. If society itself were not becoming atavistic as it is there would be no problems like this. But today we have hundreds of thousands of people, many in high positions, who have absolutely no moral scruples or ethical standards that could hold a hair when compared to decency and common sense. MAD? Of course! Editorial. firstname.lastname@example.org Ed. Comments are always welcome.
Spying Without Limits?
The US Spy Machine is now seen as overworking against Americans and allies. Complain to the NSA here.
Listen to the following in audio form here. Also on Youtube.
As evidenced from the administration and administration officials over the last six years or so, there has been an increasing move against privacy, any kind of privacy, against anyone's and everyone's privacy, by US government agencies and the Executive Branch, and under the Executive Branch's guidance, even the Congress and the courts? Is it fear from real threats America faces - say nothing of those within that are at the core of this rationale - or has the US government itself now become lock, stock and barrel THE Threat the rest of us have had nightmares about?
Many Americans, and sadly not just most, are today very alarmed at the nonchalant dismissal by our government and our state agencies over spying allegations against us as a society, as individuals and as collective resources for engineering yet further inroads against our freedom, against our way of life, against the nation we in and out of uniform fight for, die for, work for, and advocate for all our lives for. What has our freedom gotten us if it is the unrelenting and unaccountable, unbridled power of our government and individuals within it to exercise any kind of personal discretion deemed appropriate at the time to spy on not just American citizens but America herself? From protector to predator? Is that what our government has now become, a predator and we who believe in, who cherish, and hopefully, who will once more demand freedom we have become the prey? Of course this is not Nazi Germany. Not yet. But it is well past 1984 and the further past 1984 we get the more our state apparatus, under the guise of elected legitimacy, the more our leadership seems to be able to get in removing our sacred protections of freedom from local, state and federal statutes and encapsulating our restrictions and yes, now imprisonment, in a series of federal statutes and Executive Branch orders that both court and congress have embraced directly or indirectly. September 11, 2001 was certainly an event that was in part made possible because of our traditional freedoms - of speech, or travel, or thinking. But to engineer the kind of change needed to totally prevent any such recurrence, it appears that our elected government has collectively decided that you and I no longer need to be guaranteed anything. Edward Snowden scratched the surface of this inroad, and what limited access he had to NSA's machinery, he became alarmed and determined to let us - you and me - know what our government was up to and how dangerous it was. In response, Snowden, not the government, is proclaimed our enemy - he is an enemy of the state as Spencer has described the State - but hardly an enemy of you and me. Our enemy is elected. It needs to be replaced. In 2014 and 2014, just get rid of them all at the ballot box and vote in a friend and neighbor that you know you can trust. The people "serving" you now can't be,
Korat Floodwaters Receding?
26 October 2013
Photos courtesy Manager Online. Photos (use mouse for rollover). Local resident in Korat indicates still-present flooding in his neighborhood. Rollover images shows governor of Korat, Vinai Buapradit, far left, behind Thailand's "Plod," Deputy Prime Minister Plodprasop Suraswadi.
Transedited from Manager Online (Original Thai article) Editorial Hit-and-miss (mostly the latter) predictions by municipal officials in Korat assuring that this year there will be no more flooding in the municipality, at least, have been disproved time and time again because of two essential factors - rain and topography. See our editorial for comments on the combination and where Thailand went wrong.It is also recalled from many previous reassurances from the then and the current Lord Mayor of Korat that he "guarantees no more flooding." The shocking aspects of such assurances and impossible promises is not that they are never kept, but that they cannot be kept and because they are empty and impractical, should never have been cited. But reassurances are of the things dreams are made, apparently, and thus self-proven to be beneficial although they are definitely not. What is causing flooding besides deforestation? Two major things: unwise design and construction, and major society-wide corruption and abuse of the environment by vested interests. Two easily-solved issues...or not?
Phrea Vihear - "To be or not to be?"
Thai Deputy Prime Minister/Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul. Photos courtesy MCOT. See editorial.
22 October 2013
Khao Phra Vihear (several spellings in convention), the World Heritage site that used to be in northeast Thailand but is now held to be in Cambodia, once again comes to the headlines as the World Court is scheduled to rule on several points of contention over the Khmer sanctuary on 11 November 2013.
Back prior to 1962, Thailand then held back from timely response and study of the implications of its problems with Cambodia over the famous Khmer sanctuary, not responding to a deadline. As a result, the World Court turned the tide against presumed ownership by Thais and declared the temple to be in Cambodia. This verdict severely hurt Thai pride, but did little to resolve the country's habitual indecisiveness on issues not related to opportunities connected with corruption.
One of the kingpin arguments Thailand hopes to win this time is to reverse the ICJ decision of 1962, sort of like Bobby Ewing waking up in the shower to discover that the past several years of his life were but a dream. Unfortunately the Dallas-style writers used for TV are not the ones doing the judicial script. Thai hopes are hopes, and over many occasions they have been peddled as sure fire things and not just hopes, resulting in huge international disappointments. To be straightforward, the upcoming decision on 11 November could reverse the situation and award the ruins to Thailand. This is not likely, but could happen. More likely is some kind of temporary stay by the ICJ who may indicate that Thailand's claims re. the 1962 agreement are at least of some merit and require time for study. But even that may be dreaming. Odds are against the Thais, period. MAIN PAGE email@example.com
|Financially unviable! - not only Thailand's high-profile high speed train infrastructure, but the kingdom's past attempts at getting Ayutthaya to be named as 2020 World Expo site. Reason given for the failure? "the Thai government failed to support the bureau with necessary information about the the project’s financial, legislative, organizational and diplomatic aspects, the Bangkok Post reported on June 12." Sounds familiar. See full Investine report.
Is The ISA Move Just an Act?
Anti-government protesters gathered under elevated highway in Bangkok who are against the current Thaksin-directed Thai government. They are said to be largely organized by the opposition Democrat Party.
19 October 2013
he Thai government's extension of the Internal Security Act (always a useful tool in so-called and self-proclaimed democracies having trouble with feisty protestors) was not altogether a huge surprise. The pro-Thaksin government and its movers recall just how they were treated while in opposition - but don't always recall it in a public manner that reflects the actual record. I
nternal security in Thailand has been a way of live well before the kingdom's 1932 People's Party coup that attempted to bring about a complete reform from absolute to constitutional monarchy but which is viewed as having failed in an alarming manner in so many aspects. During the Cold War Thailand was used as a pawn and buffer against communist inroads into the region and internally, used its own people as pawns and buffers against social change that would ever bring about real democracy, the kind that always experiences challenges but where the government fears the people and not opposite as it is and has been, and threatens to remain so.A
solution to Thailand's "problems" with always forestalling grassroots and high-echelon changes in governance that would bring about democracy? Sondhi Limthongkul. the fiery now-careful orator and media baron, and former business partner of the banned prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, says he recommends that Thailand be properly organized (read, orchestrated) by the military for at least five years until the old school of crooks die off or get bored of politics and then new honest candidates for office will rise. A pipe dream at best. It's deep corruption in the Thai ethique, to coin a new word. Thai society and Thai people, as wonderful and as charming and as talented as they are in so many ways, are as corrupt as the sweetest apple eaten from inside by dozens of worms. Unfortunate but a reality. HEADLINES
. EDITORIAL firstname.lastname@example.org
|Financially unviable! - not only Thailand's high-profile high speed train infrastructure, but the kingdom's past attempts at getting Ayutthaya to be named as 2020 World Expo site. Reason given for the failure? "the Thai government failed to support the bureau with necessary information about the the project’s financial, legislative, organizational and diplomatic aspects, the Bangkok Post reported on June 12." Sounds familiar. See full Investine report.
"It'll Reach Nong Khai!"
Possibly the expected huge back and forth travel between Nong Khai and Bangkok that will (?) come about as a result of tens of thousands of tourists and businessmen will justify the high speed train project's rocky road to success. Perhaps, and perhaps not.
15 October 2013
Thailand N ong Khai has been the subject of much adoration, most of it from the Tourism Authority of Thailand and either vested interest of superstitious locals, who hold that the Lao-bordering province is gifted with magic Naga fireballs and is somehow (it was published in Money magazine!) the 7th best place in the world to retire to.The frequent government reassurances on the imagined necessity of a high speed rail system for Thailand is perhaps one of the most shameful aspects of what has been come to be deemed as the Thaksin grandiose schemology for Thailand that will, coupled with massive corruption, bankrupt Thailand even more than it is already bankrupted. The government has skillfully been working, apparently successfully, to obtain local and regional support for the high speed infrastructure. Ask any Thai about the projects and you are more often than not likely to hear, "Man, I really want to get on that train!" So would I. And if you like technology and comfort, convenience and speed, so would you. But we are not talking about the positive aspects of the project - we can hear more than enough of those from the government and project supporters. What we cannot get is enough, enough facts and comparative analysis that would undoubtedly show the project to be a bust. Part of the rationale for proceeding is the concept that Thailand will become a regional transportation hub. So what does that mean? A regional hub will ostensibly move international arrivals and related commerce to and fro. Will a high speed rail system help to this? Only in part. Thailand is not in a position to outspent neighboring countries in an effort to reach economic and global reputation dominance - even in image only. Thailand does not have limitless resources. HEADLINES. EDITORIAL email@example.com
|Financially unviable! - not only Thailand's high-profile high speed train infrastructure, but the kingdom's past attempts at getting Ayutthaya to be named as 2020 World Expo site. Reason given for the failure? "the Thai government failed to support the bureau with necessary information about the the project’s financial, legislative, organizational and diplomatic aspects, the Bangkok Post reported on June 12." Sounds familiar. See full Investine report.
Ubon Prisoners Demand Ice - Back!
13 October 2013
Ubon Central Prison yard, near where prisoners recently protested against having their ice and cell phones seized. Photo courtesy of Manager Online. Use mouse for rollover.
Thailand O ne of the entitlements while spending extended periods of time in prison here in Thailand, apparently, is to be able to obtain and retain narcotics to help pass the time away more according to the style one has become accustomed. This was, at any rate, the image recently painted in Ubon province where Central Prison inmates protested against, and this is not a joke, their ice being seized. The narcotic ice is extremely dangerous and potent, in addition to being highly addictive. A full description of ice is shown in the link provided, but some of the side-effects need to be listed here for good measure. They are:
Ice is a street name for crystal methamphetamine hydrochloride, which is a powerful, synthetic stimulant drug. Ice often appears as large, transparent and "sheet-like" crystals but may also be colored (often pink, blue or green). Other street names for ice include "meth", "crystal meth", "shabu" and "glass".
In 2004, 3.2 percent of Australians aged 14 years and older had used amphetamines for non medical purposes in the previous year and over 38 percent of this group reported the type of amphetamine they used was ice.
Ice use among injecting drug users increased from 15 per cent in 2000 to 52 per cent in 2004.
In 2004, 63 per cent of a sample of people who used ecstasy had tried ice at least once and 45 per cent had used ice in the past 6 months.How is it used?
Like other methamphetamine's, ice is usually snorted, swallowed or inserted anally. It is also smoked or injected, producing a rapid onset of the drug's effects. Smoking or inhaling ice has become more common in Australia in recent times. Smokers use a glass pipe, while others heat the ice on aluminum foil and inhale it ("chasing"). Ice is usually sold in "points" (0.1 gram), due to its high purity.What are the effects of ice?
The effects of any drug (including ice) vary from person to person, depending on the individual's size, weight and health, how much and how the drug is taken, whether the person is used to taking it and whether other drugs are taken. Effects also depend on the environment in which the drug is used - such as whether the person is alone, with others or at a party. Ice is a potent stimulant drug, which speeds up the activity of the central nervous system. Although few deaths have been reported in Australia as a direct result of using ice, it is considered more addictive and is associated with more significant physical, emotional and social harms than other types of amphetamines.The physical effects of ice may include: Dilated pupils
Increased breathing rate
Tremors of the hands and fingers
Increased blood pressure
Increased body temperature
Rapid and irregular heartbeat
Permanent damage to blood vessels in the brain, usually associated with very high doses (in extreme cases death may occur).Ice can also affect a person's behavior, including: Increase in physical activity
Restlessness and anxiety
Aggression, hostility and violence
Elevated mood and feelings of euphoria and wellbeing
Talkativeness and repeating simple acts or tasks
Impaired judgments making the user impulsive and leading to chronic insomnia
Abrupt shifts in thought and speech, which can make someone using ice difficult to comprehend
Paranoia or panic attacks associated with hallucinations
"Amphetamine psychosis", which users of very high doses may suffer, with symptoms resembling paranoid schizophrenia.Longer term use of ice may result in: Severe depression
Heart-related complications (heart attack and heart failure have been associated with chronic use)
Decreased appetite leading to possible malnutrition and rapid weight loss
Lung and kidney disorders that may prove fatal
Dental problems (from grinding teeth) Withdrawal
Some people experience withdrawal symptoms once they have stopped using ice. These symptoms may include: Severe depression
Long periods of sleep
The limited ability to experience pleasure
Extreme exhaustion can follow binge use of methamphetamine thus creating an overpowering need to use more of the drug." The above should serve as a warning to guardians and those who suspect friends or family members may be using icea. It is unsafe and leads to destruction, just as most other commonly used narcotics in illegal or immoral contexts. That prisoners in a central prision have ice at all, and that they want it back after it was seized, calls into question the rationale that society seems to exercize these days. . HEADLINES. EDITORIAL firstname.lastname@example.org
Korat Police Officer Kudos
11 October 2013
Photo the Korat Post. On 10 October 2013 a Royal Thai Police gestured kindly in paying off back apartment rental debut of a tenant in default. Such gestures are rare, and should be recognized when they occur. The police officer, pictured here, is Lt. Colonel Aninant Phluemmalang. While the tenant still refused to negotiate and the money was returned to the officer in the afternoon, the willingness of Thais to negotiate to resolve societal differences is not always given due recognition.
Send him appreciation on Facebook
The Korat Post Online - Read complete report in editorial section. On 10 October 2013, in an unusual move toward trying to reconcile a local landlord and non-paying tenant, a police Lt. Colonel assigned to Korat's Regional Police dipped into his own pocket to pay back rent on behalf of the tenant, the latter who claimed to have links with the police At the end of several hours of deliberations and back and forth trips to and from the apartment concerned, the tenant then refused to accept terms. The officer's money was returned to him by the apartment owner. Later, the tenant indicated to the owner that he would leave no later than mid-day to mid-night on 11 October.Disputes between landlords and tenants in Thailand are fairly common. Given the state of the economy and what is perceived by conservatives a the Thai-share of a global breakdown and erosion of moral values and personal responsibility, such differences are likely to increase. It is extremely difficult to make a living in Thailand for many, including foreigners. While the kingdom is a veritable paradise and magnet to tens of millions of foreigners each year, it is also a trap in so many ways. In effect the culture's ethical/moral infrastructure is so corrupt that even the concept of hypocrisy seems far away and removed from those here who fail to recognize nonsensical dual standards as contrary to religious and moral teachings. Thailand's property laws and rental contract laws are not the same as abroad, of course. Locally by law, according to the Civil and Commercial Code contracts and other sections an apartment owner has legal claims against non-paying tenants. Yet according to Thai law, the owner cannot seize the property or belongings of the said tenant that are still inside the apartment as guarantee for payment of back rent. Rental agreements themselves may contain such a clause, but making it stick, and obtaining court agreement that in select cases they should apply may prove impossible. email@example.com
9 October 2013
Editorial lead-in.. Michael Savage is to some acerbic. To others he's a pain. And to almost everyone he's a wealth of information on what's wrong with America these days. With other conservatives like Mark Levin Dr. Savage speaks poignant simplicity with fellow Americans and well, just people who appreciate common sense and human decency. He was the only leading American commentator to forcefully ask why that woman in Washington, D.C. had to be gunned down.The incident cited is covered in various places, including here at http://bit.ly/19ysZ4N. Dr. Savage raises several issues on what can most accurately be described as a wrongful death at the minimum. One, why not shoot the tires out? Two, why kill the woman? Why no apparent investigation other than a Washington official saying, "They conducted themselves with bravery..." The issue of bravery is an obvious poorly chosen one. A half dozen armed officers shooting into the passenger compartment, where an infant was also trapped, to what - totally resolve a national security threat? Dr. Savage also brought up the clear and present danger aspect of this kind of behavior to all Americans when he then said that in being allowed, and apparently authorized, to shoot people dead almost at will, none of us should feel safe anymore.Federalization of the United States was a basic fear of the founders of our republic. They knew that without a functional system of checks and balances, prescribed and protected by a national charter, the country would be doomed. Over the next 150 years or so small inroad appeared against this armor of the republic, but over the last several presidencies the power of the Executive has been used to set effectively set aside the powers of Congress and the Courts and replaced the vacuum with Executive Branch decisions, directives, orders and as if that were not enough, Executive Privilege and public silence on issues that are "uncomfortable." Like dictatorial-minded counterparts in Asia and other regions, Obama seems to have adopted the rule-by-decree that eventually destroys free will and instills fear in those who would be free. firstname.lastname@example.org
Traffic Dance - A Real Statement
8 October 2013 Little needs to be said when a fool publicly spews a bad idea. This truism held in times past, but not today's world where the worst ideas, the stupidest ideas, the lame brained schemes that used to be the stuff of novels have become accepted practice. Even imagining that anyone could demand motorists be charged 100 Baht a minute for being involved in a traffic accident, or because his or her car broke down, is tantamount to heresy. Who thinks this idea will fly? Hopefully no one, but from the GT-200, the blimp, the aircraft carrier, the loss of Phreah Vihear to Cambodia, the cancellation in Korat and probably most other of Thailand's provinces of monthly media press conferences all spells doom for common sense and responsible governance in the kingdom. This development was not suddenly cast upon us and sprouted up in the last year or so. But that it has become such an ingrained part of Thai society is shocking, depressing and fatal to moral decency.
Political Dinosaurs & Statesmen
7 October 2013 (NTT) Pursuing for political and social reform is one thing, doing it properly quite another. Gye Baek, a famous Korean general of the army who lived a thousand years ago, found this out in the TV series produced based on his life and trials. Trying to stay honorable in the company of thieves and men of deceit and condescension is no easy task. In Siam/Thailand the digressive sentiments have for centuries caused instability and suffering. Editorial Banharn Silpa-Archa is one of those politicians for all seasons, a backroom brawler, publicly polite astute politician who knows his way round the Siamese/Thai political landscape. He was prime minister for slightly over two years total, in two terms, succeeding popular Chuan Leekpai the second time around but preceding the Democrat leader the first time he was PM. The Silpa-Archa family is a political dynasty - father, daughter, son and others all garnering votes to enter Thailand's most popular place for photograph shots, other than the Actor's Guild, politics. Serving the people is the only goal these men of honor and tradition have, and the only thing they manage to do. Hummmmph!!
Two images appear here (use mouse for rollover). One of a Siam Commercial Bank Senior Board member, the other an aging political heavyweight. Both were prime ministers of Thailand, Anand probably the country's most respected outside of Prem Tinsulanonda.
2020 Is Just Vision, Right?
Several years ago ARP published an article citing Nong Khai as among the top places in the world to retire to. That was good news. So was the inspiration for the annual Naga Fireballs event, to be held this month, where what is said tracer bullets are worshipped as magic.
6 October 2013 (NTT)N
ot everyone can take being told an endless litany of lies, so perhaps some credit should be given to those telling the lies that they yet have a relatively large audience, in this case a province replete with believers, who do not challenge the lack of sense in the hi speed rail project that Thailand has approved funding for. Not found funding, mind you, just approved it. M
agical naga (serpent) fireballs, as popular and as sensitive as believers make them in Nong Khai, underscore the issue of local beliefs and how they can be twisted, ruthlessly or in ignorance, when policies are on the line and support "from the people" is needed. The latest 2020 campaign, where the unsupportable high speed train network for Thailand is being paraded for acclamation and political support, will not garner any money for the huge projects. There isn't any. What it will do is keep the flame of hope flickering, if gingerly, that things will not only be better but they will be wonderful. This theme of "everyone will be well off and happy" is a popular one in the country, caveated only with the provision that "you need to vote me into office." Ah, yes, THAT! email@example.com
Sondhi Given the Shaft?
Key leader of the formerly-strong People's Alliance for Democracy Sondhi Limthongkul gained bail after being sentenced to two years in prison for quoting a tiny segment of harsh defamatory words Da Torpedo uttered on a public platform in 2008. This is not the first time undeserving sentences have been handed out over Article 112.
32 October 2013
G etting an unfair court sentence in Thailand has not proven difficult day in and day out, especially over the issue of lese majest?, or Thailand's ultra-royalist centered Article 112 which prescribes up to fifteen years in prison for producing any uncomplimentary material related to the country's revered monarchy and its members. Even when such content is extremely mild and reasonable by sane standards, it can result in the speaker or publisher facing long jail time and inculcated public ire.
his latest lese majest? case, this one a reversal of a lower court's ruling that Sondhi was not guilty, was a shock to many in Thai society, not the least of which to supporters of the Yellow Shirts. On the other hand, the latest sentence was a feather in the cap of Sondhi's enemies and those who - willy nilly - support the lese majest? law. Once again a Mad Hatter threat to the revered institution has been dealt with firmly and decidedly. One day in the distant future, perhaps another century or so, hopefully the Thai people will look back on this part of their history with shame and appreciation that the human rights and entitlement to free speech that are so often trampled in Thailand, because of the lese majest? law mentality or the more general criminal defamation statutes, was an un-Buddhist and repressive series of laws and public mores. MAIN PAGE HEADLINES
Too Much Foreign Travel?
Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra is getting a lot of criticism (and it sometimes seems as if that's all they can muster) from opposition democrats and many members of the public for what is viewed as too much foreign travel. Graphic by the Korat Post. .
30 September 2013
Does a penchant for foreign travel spell irresponsibility in governance, or is it something else, that and something else, or is it just a nasty ploy by evil opposition quarters who are bound, at almost any cost, to bring down the Shinawatra government? Anyone can put forward a guess, but the best position to relate to the rest of us exactly what is going on would be to sit beside the prime minister on the plane and in whatever meetings and greetings she is part of while abroad. Only by eyewitness testimony can we really know what she is doing "over there."However, since people like to engage in conjecture, a few tidbits of possibilities for the imagination-starved: 1. She could be abroad meeting with her brother's network groups, planning how to make use of state coffers and propel megaprojects into...if not reality, then attempted reality; 2. She could be meeting with her brother, the former prime minister who was ousted in a 19 September 2006 military coup, to provide him direct input on "the situation" in Thailand. These trips would also be combined with no. 1 above; 3. She could just be shopping and having a good time, something that the opposition would really like people to believe.We are not convinced that number 3 is really the main reason. As much as women, particularly those with money to burn, are alleged to like shopping (unlike men, of course!) it is much more likely that shopping is incidental in these trips and the real reason is to further cement alliances in the kingdom to bring about an irreversible change in the way governance operates. That can be both a good thing and a bad thing. Too much state money was shifted to personal pockets, allegedly, during the first Thaksin era, but this is a phenomenon that Thais, not just politicians and police, love to exercise. Main page.
"Media-induced Panic" vs. Simple Facts
If "under control" translates into "don't worry,": perhaps they need to change places with the common man. But that would be too...uncomfortable...Photo courtesy the Nation.
24 September 2013S
ometimes the high and mighty should keep their mouths shut, so the saying goes. It refers to big shots and other influential people of position and privilege who have all kinds of reassurances to give but themselves strangely enough the only class (actually without class) who are able to live on interrupted, separate from the rest of us. 2011 saw probably Thailand's worst central region flood in more than a century, inundating major highways and bringing huge shopping completes to a halt, cutting off roads and schools and hospitals had to shut down. "Don't worry?" Bob Morley show is over, guys, and the facts are that flooding is once again taking place and it is not - repeat is not
- under any sort of control, reasonable or otherwise. For decades rampant self-serving development, much of it in construction of huge embankments, local fills and blocking of water runoff channels has been building up to a crescendo to where the Thai people are paying the piper, so to speak.T
he current flooding we are witnessing in 2013 is not under control. Flooding, by definition, is not under control. It is out of control and that's why it exists. Now, reducing flooding or limiting it can be done, but to cite the entire situation as being under control is a lie, foolhardy statement or self-delusion. Stop lying, stop making excuses, stop blaming the media. You and your like are to blame for what has happened in many ways, and once again, you are not being held accountable.
An unparalleled Waste of Money...
In Thailand, men possessing far-sighted vision and noble dreams have ruled over common sense and logic for centuries. Thailand's hi-speed train project only serves to prolong this foolhardiness. Fancy graphics and political arm-twisting won't hide subsequent damage from economic impracticality of the project. See editorial.
23 September 2013
ou need not go far to figure out whether or not the hi speed rail project Thailand's leadership seems bent on forcing through will benefit the kingdom or just a few high-speed politicians and their "share the wealth" business partners will be the ones benefiting. A hi-speed train project not only costs tens of billions of dollars to build, but if we have seen any examples about maintenance ability by Thais for huge complicated projects like blimps and aircraft carriers, we can rest assured that a hi-speed rail project is likely to suffer from the same fatigue. The Lam Takong Rest area in Korat, about sixty or so kilometers from Korat municipality, is a case in point. When Suwat Liptapanlop and nearly-as-high dignitaries opened up the facility several years ago, it was all pomp and promise. Today the facility stands run-down, ignored, filthy and smelly, toilets plugged or not working and the promises made in the past are all but forgotten. They were recently given a reminder by a project just announced to reinvigorate the place, but once again, who has money? And either the will or the time? Politicians have moved on to greater dreams and complying media and public leaders are only too glad to continue the photo opportunity charade from one generation to the next. C
hina has a huge interest in the grandiose scheme of hi-speed rail infrastructure in the kingdom, and if history is still any guide, its own romance with pipedream malls and civilian cities built that nearly all remain empty and investors devoid of returns should be a lesson for Thailand. But Thailand is not interested in learning lessons, only teaching them. From defamation to lese majest?, from what's appropriate for you to what's not appropriate for me, why it's all there being wisely delivered to our intellectual palate - more accurately lack of one. I
f there was one project in Thailand to vote no over, it's the hi-speed rail projects that the government continues to insist is essential to the kingdom but which is not. We have many differences with the PAD and Sondhi Limthongkul, but recently he reiterated that the hi-speed train project is totally unnecessary and wasteful. We support this position and oppose, fully, any such project in the kingdom until GDP comes up to a par with that of countries already having hi-speed trains. MAIN PAGE
Southern Rubber Farmers Incensed .
Almost a dozen vehicles set alight in Thailand Muslim-dominated south as rubber farmers continue to express opposition to recent agreements and understandings over the rubber price battle. Photo Courtesy of The Nation.
17 September 2013
the Korat Post
he latest rubber farmer protests in southern Thailand, where some ten vehicles were gutted by fire and a major roadway becoming a stand-off between unarmed protesters and Thai security forces is yet another reminder of challenges to national security on the one hand, and plain and simple justice on the other, exist in the kingdom and are not likely to go away anytime in the foreseeable future. S
everal burning issues in Thailand - so-called political but in fact more so about basic social injustice and near-total lack of prevention of human rights abuses throughout the kingdom - remain to be addressed much less resolved. At the moment Yellow Shirts and other pseudo-royalist groups are having lots of fun making snide remarks about the Thai prime minister Yingkuck Shinawatra, how stupid she is and how silly she is and so on ...albeit with some points to make here and there, the comments are fairly typical of how Thais are indoctrinated since birth to dismiss the different from the Thainess they are quick to demand. Everyone can make mistakes and not everyone should be elected to high office - George W. Bush perhaps one of the highest profile examples of this - but not everyone is in charge of a country with an ancient hierarchical structure that always dismisses efforts to lay the groundwork for basic human rights protections - protections that mean something and that actually work. T
hese days, as in the past and as will be into the foreseeable future, human rights face little if any preventive protection in the kingdom. It's always after the fact, take it to court, get justice there. But what about your rights at the beginning when you want to exercise them? MAIN PAGE
Global Iconoclasts Put on Notice
Thai aviation authorities indicated that they were inspired after the most recent accident at Suvarnabhumi Airport - to improve safety and response to emergencies. There was no word of black paint and censorship, used out of a different kind of inspiration.
16 September 2013
THE KORAT POST online
his "enduring more attacks" comment by Thailand's English language daily the Bangkok Post in its 16 September 2013 report and commentary on the recent off-the-runway/subsequent passenger injury incident at the country's controversial international airport brings to light the Thainess aspects of domestic culture - image, reputation, victimization, "they are at fault and we are not" rationale on everything from civil to criminal and beyond. A
lthough the words did not come from the mouth of the country's aviation principals, they do originate, albeit in the particular publication cited above they may have been tongue-in-cheek, they still reflect a particularly Thai approach to all kinds of issues but mostly those dealing with image: and that includes everything. A friend of the family used to say, "cheephai khana nai, ko hai mee cheuyr siang kolaewkan." Or, "A screwed-up as things get, at least let me keep my reputation!" T
hat sort of says it all around for the ethic of safeguarding, at all costs - A...L...L.. costs the reputation of country, self, situation, ...you name it, without limit, without shame, without embarrassment. And if that does not work introduce disappearing smiles, even a grimace or two, some nasty words, threats and public announcements about withdrawing this and that or issuing a criminal complaint. The best way to avoid being placed under attack, according to this indoctrinated school of thought, is to attack. HEADLINES
. EDITORIAL firstname.lastname@example.org
Money - More 'n More
Minimum called for Supreme Patriarch funderal donation. Another Buddhism scandal taints - not Buddhism - but the way too many Thais and Thai officials practice it. See editorial. Is money now the name of the game...or has it been that way for a while?
12 September 2013
THE KORAT POST online
EditorialTimes were when 50,000 Baht was a lot of money. But according to an official Thai Buddhist clergy document issued to Sangha officials, there are now "going rates" for donations to be used in merit rites for the Supreme Patriarch's funeral. One subdistrict monk has had enough, appeals to anyone who can help
emples dot the landscape of Thailand from south to north, east to west, urban setting to the smallest village.And...no real surveys done by people we know, but a lot of them are empty, just like the pocketbooks of people who donated to their construction. What is going on in Thailand, and why is it continuing? Many respected experts in Buddhism are calling for removal of state control, for accountability to the public by temples that appeal for merit making donations and then abuse hard-earned cash by going out to shop for things like computers, pay for on-grounds entertainment, and worse. HEADLINES
Pride & Prejudice: Secrets?
In a land where state censorship is a given in almost all matters, even of religion and speech,
it does not surprise all that Thai airline operators hide symbol - but why black? Out of white paint?.
10 September 2013
the Korat Post EDITORIAL
W as it pride or prejudice, or a wise corporate policy that has now raised public information issues regarding the right of a public transport operator to place a veil over it's public image when something goes wrong, like the recent Thai-Star Alliance off the runway incident this week? T
hai Airway′s Airbus A330-300 slid off runway this morning as it landed at Suvarnabhumi Airport, injuring 14 people. President of the airline said the situation is currently under investigation. But it is reported that the plane′s malfunctioned wheels might have caused the plane to slide off the runway as it touched the ground. A dozen passengers were reportedly injured as they were being evacuated out of the plane.H
ow far will, should,and legally can a company hide its public profile from the public, and under what circumstances is such concealment perfectly fine? Does this also translate into the auto industry where manufacturers may want to install an automatic eject on car brand name letters placed on cars if those vehicles get into an accident? Association of name and image with bad things is a particularly Thai sensitivity, but now in reflection as a commentator notes, it is much wider than Thailand. We can appreciate the negative aspects of having one's company name and logo appear in the media in such circumstances, but is it a legitimate, and ethical, action to take by removing all traces of who owns the vehicle involved? Now we look at Thailand's State Railways, suffering over a Baker's Dozen of derailments recently, and ask, well...if a Thai airlines is doing this to protect the image when what about the SRT doing the same thing? This idea, though, may be far-fetched as trains are a bit difficult to hide and EVERYONE IN THE WORLD KNOWS that trains in Thailand are owned and operated by the SRT. C
ensorship in Thailand is always the issue, whether it's a marginally justified (in the eyes of the corporate or political interest) to hide one's identity. Planes are generic in a sense. Take off the logo and tail coloring and you will have no idea to whom that plane belongs. You could find out who made it by the shape or recognize its manufacturer, but since the operator has to be at fault, or by default is negatively associated with a crisis incident, then it's obvious that you have to, HAVE TO, are compelled to and owe it to your shareholders (and boss/PR departments) to keep the image positive. If that image falls into the enemy territory of negativity, then remove it. Case closed! .........Not quite. Removing an image is one thing, placing a huge black redacting mark over it does not hide the incident and raises the important question of, "What was there?" to the world. CNN also carried this censorship story, clearing showing that ugly black "white-out." Why not, thinking of it, use white? Hello? .....Hello? HEADLINES
Sexual Allegations Upheld
Anyone at all familiar with Thailand's defamation regime - recording a litany of good people suing those
reporting on their actual behavior - will applaud this defamation dismissal decision.
And did we
8 September 2013
the KORAT POST online
o a college professor is named in sexual harassment suit by female students, and instead of admitting guilt - reputation and honor, not to mention job, to protect, the professor sues back with his own allegations of defamation. That's the difference between Thailand and other countries where such suits are usually more difficult to bring about but where even honest but inaccurate allegations are not always held to be wrongful to the extent of warranting an unfavorable court decision.T
he cliche "This is Thailand" is well-known in the Land of Smiles. It is used by both Thais and expatriates alike to describe the unique Thai phenomenon, which exists nowhere else in the world, of hypocrisy and run of the mill variations in human nature that are found all over the world. Except in Thailand such hypocrisy is not that as such - it is a mysterious force or characteristic of Thai society that when confronted head-on as an issue, is said to be part of Thai culture, and shrugged off with a "I don't know why things are like this." by Thais and a "This is a clear-cut example of hypocrisy by many non-Thais. A
n argument put forward by at least one observer of the Thai scene - so to speak - is that Thailand cannot be said to have hypocrisy as to have it means that individuals and the society as a whole recognize (understand and admit to) the nature of hypocrisy and hold that concept as a valid one in their own society. The Thai do not, and there is a good reason - if anyone finds out, let us know. Just kidding! One reason is that Thainess stands in the way, a concept that somehow negates such social realities as hypocrisy by making all individuals who fit the mold to be held in unaccountable positions of automatic respect, protected from derision by name or clearly identified. Of course, seeming hypocrisy takes over once again in meaningful ways, such as when we watch yet another abhorrent criminal paraded on TV screens with police all around him or her, no lawyer present, intimidated and afraid to counter any charges or allegations made by police. In these instances, social prejudices are reinforced, bad examples to society are expunged (they think), and justice is once again served. That such accused persons deserve (and must be provided) protection from rights violations first and foremost with an attorney, and secondly with an injunction against police for such public parades, is lost in the land where hypocrisy does not, cannot, exist. email@example.com
Open Letter on Syria
No one, even God Himself, gave the United States authority to create misery and mayhem.
5 September 2013
t cannot be overemphasized or said often enough, but yet our leaders seem steadfast in their pursuit of wanton bombing of yet another people. No one, even God Himself, gave the United States authority to create misery and mayhem
. "The American people, understandably, want us to be focused on the business of rebuilding our economy here and putting people back to work. And I assure you, nobody ends up being more war-weary than me. But what I also believe is that part of our obligation as a leader in the world is making sure that when you have a regime that is willing to use weapons that are prohibited by international norms on their own people, including children, that they are held to account." — Remarks at meeting with Baltic leaders, Aug. 30, 2013.
.K. So making sure that bad guys who use prohibited weapons on their own people are held to account is our objective. Not bad, by the way. In principle. But then we have a couple of things standing in the way – our own repeated hypocrisy and our lack of legitimacy in conducting ourselves as if we were country sheriff. We are not. No one asked us to be, no one elected us to make global law enforcement a priority of how our government does business. Of course, over history we have ignored this lack of common consensus and plodding along our merry way, spreading death and destruction in the name of liberation, freedom and national security. The rewards to this to date have been loss of liberty, restrictions on freedom and increased threats to national security. So this begs the question – what is it that makes us so different from others, besides our military might and self-assumed God-given right of determination for others whether they live or die? What is it that makes us so different? And, by what right do we claim to be immune from international criminal prosecution when we invade other nations or “just bomb the Hell out of them,” and force millions of refugees to flee their homes, families, nation of birth and culture to escape the certain ruin that follows yet another American bombing campaign? S
ecretary of State John Ketchup Kerry says Obama has the right to blast the Hell out of Syria no matter what Congress does. Wow… For his part, President Obama says that, by direct implication, not killing more unfriendly-to-the-US Arabs in the Middle East "could lead to escalating use of chemical weapons or their proliferation to terrorist groups who would do our people harm. In a world with many dangers, this menace must be confronted."
I’ve got issues with the president on menaces that we confront today. For many Americans that menace has come to be a runaway penchant for insisting on “my way” or “the die way.” Yes, Americans like liberty and human rights and freedom and safety and hot dogs and Burger King, but I still believe that above all that Americans want, cherish and demand moral accountability for what our nation plans, for what it supports, and for what it does. Traditionally we have escaped such accountability. Like it or not, the events of 9/11/2001 arose out of an effort, a wayward and hateful one, to hold America accountable for many sins of the past. But no, we can’t listen to this, we can’t accept this, we can’t allow this rationale to stop our commercial-military-industrial complex from taking it out on yet another ethnic group collective that we despise. S
o, again to the president and to fellow Americans, I ask, I entreaty, I insist that in our obligation to act responsibly we do just that. First determine beyond doubt who used those chemical weapons last month in Syria, then assemble a coalition of the willing and then instead of a military attack, attack Syria in the pocket. And who knows? At the end of all this you may just find that it was someone else who used the gas. And certainly, you will then not have given aid and succor to yet another extremist Islamic fascist group taking advantage of superpower stupidity to undermine a government bad but not as bad as what it has to offer. HEADLINES
. EDITORIAL firstname.lastname@example.org
New Mandala, Prachatai, et. al
6 September 2013
THE KORAT POST online
Thailand's seemingly unendless bouts with freedom-idctatorship-corruption-freedom-dictatorship-corruption are well recorded, more so abroad in freer venues than at home where such accounts would do much more good. It is the presence of those foreign accounts that, from time to time, gets the wheelers and dealers upset because of negative PR and disturbing things like facts and actual events that are locally denied, hidden or punished for revealing. This is Thailand, however, and while it is simplistic except by the diplomatic corps to cop out with "let the Thais handle it": ever consider what this really means? Which Thais? The good ones or the bad ones, the democrats or the dictators, the ones in the right or the ones in the wrong? Or more realistically, the Thais "we need to work with." Ah, those Thais!As to local farangs and local Thais, however, who do have a grasp on reality and from time to time let us know what it is, dozens of writers, academics, activists and what are, in a lump, "enemies" of life as we know it they lend us wisdom now and then in the form of published accounts and observations. One such account worth reading is the 27 August 2013 "Pesky Foreigners" that Cod Satrusyang provided to us. It is republished here in part, and the full text can be seen on New Mandala here
oreigners cannot know much about Thailand because they are not Thai and thus do not know the local attitude, culture and perceptions of the Thai people. Foreigners don’t have a stake in Thailand, they should not judge things they do not understand. Why can’t foreigners just leave Thailand alone? This is nothing new for people who have studied the political climate of the country. Red-leaning foreigners are accused by opponents of being paid by Thaksin or simplifying and overstating class conflicts. Advocates for the opposition are called entrenched, fascist and confused. It’s not just the everyday layman that makes such accusations, but very well educated Thais as well. In fact after the crackdown on the protesters in 2010 the Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand hosted a panel of Thai intellectual luminaries such as Dr Sumet Jumsai and Somtow Sucharitkul, all of whom reverted to the same talking points.N
or is this vein of rhetoric limited to just one country or region. All over the world and across the pages of history ‘foreign agents’ have been corrupting youth, reporting falsely, spying etc. on the mother nation. One only need to look as far as Egypt to understand that this phenomenon is hardly unique to Thailand. When Morsi was in power, the Muslim Brotherhood accused foreign journalists of colluding to produce damaging reports that were untrue. Now that the shoe is on the other foot and the military/opposition is in power the accusations are still the same. Many Liberal Egyptians have also adopted the stance that foreign journalists just ‘don’t understand’ the intricacies of Egyptian politics. email@example.com
Is It Thaksin or 'Them?'
the Korat Post Online
Observers are of two minds when viewing the recent eviction from parliament of a Democrat Party MP
5 September 2013 P
arliament was disturbed again on 4 September as its president evicted a Democrat Party MP for not sitting down and remaining quiet. The MP wanted to have a per-MP time of 30 minutes extended to MPs who wanted to debate the issue of rubber prices.T
he issue of rubber prices has been plaguing the Thaksin-friendly Thai government for months now, and throughout the kingdom rubber farmers are already interrupting major highways and threatening, according to reports, to close down a southern airport if negotiations go poorly. Some of the gathering farmers are also displeased with some of their representatives who have, in their view, gone too far in favor of the government. B
angkok has already had serious separatist actions in the southern region and in spotted locations throughout the country found arms and explosives that could be used for terrorism. The displeasure of the three southernmost provinces with central rule and past rights violations, corruption and cultural divergences, has led to a traditional standoff. The rubber pricing issue can only be seen to exacerbate the matter.
Mob Rule vs. Mob Rules
the Korat Post Online
Thai rubber farmers met recently in Udorn, and other provinces in Thailand, to finalize their plan of attack against the current Thai government to achieve satisfaction over their demands that rubber prices in Thailand be raised to levels
they stipulated to the government.
28 August 2013 R
ubber farmers have been working hot and heavy this week in what has been headlined by mainstream media as efforts to force the current Thai government to accede to considerable rises in local rubber prices. While their demands have some merit, the current global rubber prices having dropped 23% since earlier this year and increasing competition from other rubber farmers in Thailand who are now growing rubber trees where historically they have not been grown, poses conundrums for all. I
n addition to the mainstream media coverage, there are opposing political camps strongly suggesting political interference in the current demonstrations. The side supporting the government claims anti-government groups, supported by the opposition Democrats, are helping to engineer the demonstrations. The side supporting the opposition claims that it has nothing to do with interfering with anything.
Korat Highway Closure Coming
Thai rubber farmers from the south are joined with those in the northeast and other regions of
the country to close major highways in efforts to pressure the government to prop up local rubber
28 August 2013 Korat residents face imminent closure of the main government highway, Mitraphap (Friendship) near Sikiew district as Thailand's rubber farmers conduct a remarkably organized national campaign to pressure the government to prop up rubber prices with a subsidy approximately 50% of the current domestic price of 80 Baht per kilogram. Whether the pressure will backfire or produce results is in the air. . HEADLINES EDITORIAL
Rubber Farmers Price Stretching
Southern-based Thai rubber farmers, demanding significant state subsidies for rubber prices
that have fallen on the world market in 2013. They threaten major road blockades if demands
are not met. Photo courtesy The Nation Group.
26 August 2013 Rubber
prices are down, for sure.
What is not so certain is exactly why they should be increased to farmers who are in the same boat as the rest of us with increasing prices, stagnant wages and a series of global economic challenges, including the coming AEC - Asean Economic Community - that will further depress local sales prices and challenge domestic competition in many sectors of the economy. I
n the US at the moment more wage increase demands are being made by what used to be a temporary position labor market - service industries for fast food establishments. McDonald's and other staff are calling for a national boycott until their wages are, believe it or not, doubled! As Ben Ferguson, a syndicated radio host said today on KZRG, most of the staff in that sector are really there, or should be, for temporary reasons and should be planning their lives to move up and out to better pay. Instead, people are making their careers out of flipping burgers and then they want the same career benefits that chief executives get. More or less...
This last Friday night, and repeated on ASTV over the weekend was the leadership of
Thailand's renown People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) announcing that they were
handing in their badges. Agencies Reports
25 August 2013
Despite the removal of their chess pieces from the main board of Thai politics, the PAD will not likely change its sentiments on an organizational or individual membership level. For years now the fundamentalist royalist aspects of the PAD has been viewed by its less-than-enthusiastic critics as a thorn in the side of Thai social development - which is, after all, what politics is all about. That, of course, and so-called national security.N
ot having watched the Friday night announcement a foreign observer of the Thai political scene watched the sad resignations on Saturday morning, a bit surprised but perhaps more so taken aback by the continued insistence of Sondhi Limthongkul, the PAD's titular head, that politicians were to blame for the country's ills. Apparently he and his cohorts have not read reams of literature written anytime from 2,000 years ago to today's Amazon.com listings that show politicians, while providing a venue for corruption, come from a society that is either corrupt or not. So it was not, as Sondhi holds, politicians that are to blame but rather Thai society. And that is a place the PAD and its supporters and sympathizers simply are incapable of appreciating in the western sense. Clueless in Chicago becomes Clueless in Thailand. W
hat lies ahead for Thailand now that the Shinawatra machine, like the US did to the Soviets so long ago with outspending that broke up the Red Giant, has apparently gotten rid of an important obstacle in its goal to reform Thai society? What, indeed! The kind of changes that Thailand needs to undergo won't always bring about shouts of glee and on the other hand, admonitions by loyalists, but changes will occur - if the military can be kept out of politics and if society can grow out of its long-too fit pantaloons.
Another Offense to Muslims?
Thai Channel 7 TV's program, Where the Sky Meets the Sand," apparently has raised the ire
of sensitive Muslims who seem convinced the program, actually well-produced as far as Thai
soaps go, puts Arabs in a negative (seemingly stupid) light. .
MANAGER ONLINE and KHAO SOD (see related Thai article
- original English
24 August 2013 If stupidity appearances were a standard, it is arguable that most Thai soap operas tend to represent Thais in a stupid light - the efforts aided by poor acting, poor directing and poor you-name-it. But this time the complaint against prime time TV in the Land of Smiles is from powerful and highly taboo-to-offend sensitive Muslims who are convinced the series puts them in a bad light. At issue, of course, is whether it really does not not, or whether this relatively new TV series is a breakthrough in cultural understanding
ot to despair. The popularity of Where the Sky Meets the Sand is likely to keep the soap opera on TV for a while yet, despite protests from Muslim groups that indicate they have been shocked by mention of the reference to Buddhist in the series, as well as what they describe as false portrayal of Muslims as not permitting women's education and so on...all arguments we heard before and all which, of course, are relatively unsupported by harsh reality in the Muslim world. Indeed, the entire history of Islam is replete with conquest and force, even through to today in the so-called modern Arab world. Saudi Arabia, for example, over 95% Muslim, did not remain that way without early use of force. Saudi children are physically compelled, at the point of punishment, to pray five times a day until they begin to accept it was their way of life, according to a long-time resident of the region. The same observer also said that in the field, out from the cities, if anyone in the Muslim world really thinks women have a fair chance and equal rights, he needs his mind examined. W
here The Sky Meets the Sand is a comparatively well-produced (comparatively is the operative word with appropriate emphasis and tone) soap opera that in fact highlights, to this former resident of the Sunni and Shiite worlds of Saudi Arabia and Iran, intricate Muslim and Arab thinking, social mores and the common individual conflicts - jealousies, envy, gluttony, love, respect, deference, and more - that are replete in any human society. Thus there should be no overt Muslim or Arab objection to the series that, if anything, actually puts the Muslim and Arab world on TV for the first time in Thailand, other than the standard Islamic preachings that have aired for several years. Such TV productions need to be seen, not believed. And anyone objecting to them should as a matter of course and standardization, decry any - not just Muslim or Arab - silly portrayals of stupidity in cultures. But as begun in this editorial, that would mean getting rid of almost all of them.Some Manager Online reader comments on Muslim sensitivities over this TV series...äÁèÁÕã¤ÃÊ¹ã¨äÍéá¢¡ºéÒ ÊÁ¹éÓË¹éÒÁÑ¹
No one is interested in crazy Arabs. It’s what they deserve!
Signed, Selfish Arab
¡ç·Ò§Ãº.ÍÕÂÔ»µìà¢ÒäÁèÇèÒÍÐäÃ áÅéÇá¡¨ÐÁÒ·ÓµÒàËÅ×Í¡µÒ¾Í§ãËéÁÑ¹¹èÒ·ØàÃÈË¹Ñ¡¢Öé¹·ÓäÁ ËÃ×Í¾Ç¡á¡àËç¹ÇèÒÍÕÂÔ»µìäÁèãªèÁØÊÅÔÁ Ë×Í
Well, they aren’t saying anything about fighting in Egypt. So why are their wretched eyes bulging out now? Or do they think that Egypt isn’t Muslim?
ÁØÊÅÔÁ´ÕµÒÂÅÐ §Ò¹È¾¾Ç¡ÁÑ¹àªÔàÃÒä» ¾Í§Ò¹¾Ø·¸¡çºÍ¡ä»äÁèä´é §Ò¹ÊÃéÒ§ÁÑÊÂÔ´¡çÁÒËÒªÒÇ¾Ø·¸ãËéªèÇÂºÃÔ¨Ò¤ áµè¾ÍÇÑ´¾Ø·¸äÁèä´é §Ò¹áµè§ÒµÔ¼ÁàªÔ¤¹ÁØÊÅÔÁä» ¨Ñ´âµêÐ¾ÔàÈÉãËéäÁèÁÕËÁÙ áµè¾Í¼Áä»§Ò¹áµè§´Õ¹àÍÒÇÑÇÁÒãËé·Ñé§æ·ÕèÃÙéÇèÒ¤ÃÍº¤ÃÑÇ¼ÁäÁè·Ò¹ÇÑÇ ¶ÒÁµÃ§æÁØÊÅÔÁ¹ÕèÍÂÒ¡áÊ´§àÅÂ¤ÃÑºÇèÒ´Õ ¶Ù¡ãÊèÃéÒÂ ¡ÒÃ¡ÃÐ·Ó¾Ç¡¤Ø³ã¤Ãæ¡çÃÑºäÁèä´é
When good Muslims die - they invite us to the funerals. When it comes to Buddhist funerals, they say they can’t attend. When it comes to building mosques they come around Buddhists looking for donations. But when it comes to Buddhist temples they can’t [donate]. For the wedding of a relative I invited Muslims to attend. Tables were especially arranged and there was no pork. When I went to the wedding there was beef served despite knowing that my family did not eat beef. Speaking frankly, these types of Muslims want to present themselves as good and under attack. Your group behavior…no one can take it.
"Appointed Senators Avoid Politics."
"Still fugitive" former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, reputed by "the establishment"
in Thailand to be the cause of all the country's division and all its other problems.
22 August 2013 O.K.
. Thailand's army chief says, officially at least, that he doesn't want to break the rules - sort of denying, it seems clear now, that there not only are not, but will not, be any carrying out of a coup against the Shinawatra government, despite the latter's persistent efforts to "fix" a constitution engineered by the military and traditionalists and under close scrutiny by an elected government that wants the charter brought back around to where it will support democratic rule. That's also the official version, by the way.L
istening to various Democrat members of Parliament today debating in the House, it was particularly interesting to hear one state quite clearly, in opposition to the Pheu Thai push for an entirely elected senate, that appointed senators were there to avoid any political interference! Now, if anyone out there reading this can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
and tell us just what your opinion is of this statement, we'd like to know, really would. We cannot see, in any stretch of the imagination, where senators of any kind - appointed all or elected all - could be free or immune from political interference. Perhaps it depends on what you define as interference versus what you define as using tools to keep the status quo. If you are a supporter of the latter, then anyone anyone says in defense of your position makes sense, no matter how full of nonsense it is. I
f this particular aberrance from common sense was restricted to Thailand, it would be tragedy enough. But from the American administration to the Russian, from Japan, South Korea to all of Africa, and beyond, national leaders and those seeking power and influence have apparently realized that those are the only goals worthwhile - that despite teachings to the contrary, selfishness and gluttony are fine and should be aspired to. T
haksin Shinawatra was not Thailand's main problem, or the primary reason that there is so much divisiveness today in Thai society. The real issues are enshrouded in decades, even centuries, of stratified social hierarchy where those responsible for decisions don't accept responsibility, and those affected by those decisions are not given recourse.
How To Remain Safe From Scams
If greed, lack of personal due diligence and yes, even the allure of sex take over your mental
facilities when you are just about to spend money, you are lost!
20 August 2013 $
oney is right at the top of the rung of the relationship ladder in Thailand,whether in business, personal affairs, or state business. If you can't afford to lose the dime you can afford to spend the time." Love and smiles and even written contracts don't mean dirt if the person and/or his or her friends across the table are only after your money and later, when it's gone, you are left without any resource - or so it seems. T
hailand is exceedingly deceptive to the enlightened, and not just the unwary. The country's lures and allures grab the imagination, fascinate the mind and ego, and often lead to some kind of irrational personal feeling that it is OK to give someone else, especially someone you might have known for less than a week, your money - any of it, or all of it. As someone who probably needs his money and does not want to lose it, a word to the wise, well...a few words, below...1. Do not believe anything you are told, or even shown, when anyone suggests that you turn money over to them. Just remain calm and understand that it's your money they are after, not some compulsion to help make you rich.
2. Even if shown something, like a property or possession allegedly owned by the person claiming to own it, do not hand over any money, even a deposit. Explain that you need to verify documents and ownership, and ask for cooperation. If you don't get it, move on to someone who is willing to cooperate.
3. Do a little reading of Thai Civil and Commercial Law, and Criminal LAw, before you get involved IN ANY dealings in the Land of Smiles. Blindly handing out money on the basis of faith is just plain stupid - yet we know how often this occurs.
4. If you have already been ripped off and really want to see what can be done, discuss your individual case with someone you can trust for input and guidance. A lawyer is, of course, advised in many such instances, but so is some common sense on your part and willingness to review what happened, gather evidence and then file papers with the police or a lawyer for litigation. There are interim steps that can be taken as well.
5. Many foreigners in Thailand have had problems with girl friends, wives and Thai relatives who took everything or who certainly took enough. These instances are many times correctable, but it requires evidence. If you do have an issue, write to the email@example.com to see what some options might be. Keep in mind that any advice or comments are layman-oriented and that for legal counsel you need a lawyer.See -
top 10 scams in Thailand http://www.thai-blogs.com/2008/08/05/top-10-scams-in-thailand/
Bird poop et. al - http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thailand/travel-tips-and-articles/75907
Tuk-tuks and more - http://www.thailandtips.info/for/thailand-scams/
Ripped Off or Just Stupid?
Your relationship with your Thai wife or girlfriend may not be as clear as you think. Your lack Recent articles appearing on the meebal.com website involved foreigners' relationships with Thai women and the often too late realization that in Thailand money is the most important thing. For guys interested in only sex and self-delusion, though, even that conclusion is a bit faulty. It is not just about sex, but about security and a self-centered culture. Read http://meebal.com/time-for-thailand-to-change-marriage-visa/ which covers unfairness of marriage visas, and http://meebal.com/foreigners-being-financially-ruined-by-thai-wives/ for how foreigners are financially ruined (apparently not by their own stupidity but by Thai wives.) As a foreigner who has been married a considerable time to a Thai lady (44+ years) I can attest that her personal interests and mine vary considerably over a broad range of issues. However, while we have had tough bargaining positions regarding money and how best to invest it, I have not always given in. The cold hard test of giving in is to ask the loved one just what kind of guarantees there will be if money passes hands. If the answer is suspect or not to your liking, all you have to do is say no, and mean it.One of the neat things about Thai culture, in its many prejudices, is the idea that foreigners are different, that they think and behave differently, and of course, that they have an endless source of money that can be constantly drained off for one project after another - relative in trouble, buy house for real husband, gambling, you name it. This perception can be used in your favor. You will be expected to be strange and sometimes not able to be understood. But even if refusing to provide money you appear kind, calm, understanding, reluctant and willing but unable to help, that's OK too. Don't fall for tears or sex. It ain 't worth it.
of information and awareness of the way things are done in Thailand can lead to personal
losses that don't need to be .
20 August 2013
It's admirable that "the natives" try hard to get things right - when they do. Too often, however, EDITORIAL SPECIAL
they would rather leave out essential information and confound others with huge lapses.
19 August 2013
Time and time again foreigners have dealt with a unique Thainess aspect - that of almost absolutely refusing to get an authoritative look at anything before it gets published or promoted. Dates can be wrong, grammar atrocious, facts opposite from what they really are, and much, much more. In the meantime, if the grossly expensive ad in the Bangkok Post you paid for is illegible, blame your staff - but never its management!Why? Why is it so important to totally ignore input from others, Thais or foreigners, and put out a piece of junk? Our observer told us..."Possibly because of the "We are slaves to no one" ethic that permeates a great deal of Thai culture and society, an attitude which belies the fact that "yes, you are - to one another." Yet the image is generated that it is much more important to do things the so-called "Thai Way" which does not exist either. There is no Thai way per se. There is the right way and the wrong way. Feel differently? Get over it." Hmmm...not sure if well-said or not, but it does perk interest.
Pension Obligations To Blame? 19 August 2013
According to the State Railways of Thailand, it's operating expenses exceed by ten times its
income from rail fare. The SRT cites pension obligations as a leading factor in the debt. The
issue brings to question government plans for high-speed rail and track doubling projects.
The convenience and relatively low cost of rail travel in Thailand has been a historical reality for decades. And so has the reality of filth and lack of passenger car maintenance, as well as lack of rail maintenance. The fact that the State Railways of Thailand, the SRT, has been operating in the red to the tune of 10:1 is not a surprise; the surprise is why nothing has been done to date. Sort of a surprise, really. Not a real one. Like all other state and government agencies, the SRT is full of people following the leader and standing in for as many photo shoots as humanely possible. The extent of pretension and role playing, the survivalist instinct to get on with nothing and pretend it is something is legend. It is thus extremely vexing to try to wring out a semblance of credibility from anyone involved in the state PR process and agency planning that the grandiose plans now underway to build new doubled rails and high speed rail services between major cities, including in the impoverished northeast region of the kingdom, will come to anything other than naught. Talk, photos, smiles, wasted funds and the public coffers once again torn asunder...this is Thailand, they are fond of using as an excuse o explain why all this is permitted, indeed encouraged, to go on and on ad infinitum. A society that is indoctrinated to accept every single thought and brainless idea from above as gospel isn't a society with much recourse. The platitudes enshrined in the national charter and legal codes do little to stand up to the overpowering anti-substance ethic that has interfered in social development for centuries. Of course, one of the facts is that any reform effort, a genuine one, would disrupt many cultural aspects of the kingdom and the society as it has been molded. This is bad for digital photography but good news for individuals who have, let's face it, no rights at all, who can be shot in front of a bevy of witnesses and disposed of with witnesses later developing faulty memories. The future is not bright, not with the bright ideas that seem destined to mold wishful thinking.
Decade of Protests Over Potted Road
Residents of a Kalasin village cry out to authorities after ten years of living with a road that Such appeals to authorities is a common theme in Thailand, with officials always with a reason why they can't go out to take a look or with false assurances they know of the problem very well but are feverishly seeking to include funds in an upcoming budget for the work. They seldom explain, however, they they have time to run around the countryside with every political Tom, Dick and Harry that happens to blow in on a daily breeze in visits that provide lots of photo opportunities but never any results that actually do much or get anything done. If anyone has wondered whether outgoing administration officials leave turn-over notes for the next gang, the answer is of course not.
is hardly usable.
Officials have been "nonresponsive."
18 August 2013
en years is a long time to ask for state assistance to fix a local road. Ten years of waiting and complaining and still little or no repair. With municipal officials even in provincial central districts hardly able to manage burgeoning populations in areas under their noses, do remote villages stand any chance?
Killer Cop Did It? "Uniformed" cited.
Confession retraction and referral to a uniformed killer lead to renewed efforts to find killer.
Victim's driver's lawyer at right. Photo courtesy of The Nation.
From The Nation
14 August 2013
Akeyuth is dead, of that there can be no doubt. But once again, police claims about who did it, how it was done, even where it was done, are blown out of the water by a more processional forensics examination that contradict most of the police contentions Rumored to have fallen to the same group of hands that Muslim human rights lawyer Somchai Neelaphaijit succumbed to, Akeyuth may yet reveal his real killers.. HEADLINES
From Manager Online (original Thai article here)
Roiet Youth Nabbed for Assault
Thai youths in Roiet caught by authorities for physical assault with knives.
13 August 2013
Asix-member gang of youths was recently apprehended in Roiet after authorities identified them as having committed physical assault against others. According to reports, on August 11, 2013 the six youth barged into an internet cafe with sharp knives and assaulted another youth in the store. The youth fought back, forcing the six to flee, but not after, according to the shop owner, they had inflicted 50,000 Baht worth of damage to his shop. HEADLINES
Army Chief Continues Insistence
Hardly one to stay out of public speaking, Prayuth claims innocence for subordinates.
From Manager Online
10 August 2013
The chief of the Royal Thai Army insisted that the military was not involved in the deaths of six civilians shot dead as they sought shelter inside a Bangkok temple during the 2010 military crackdown. His comment contradicts the recent court inquest which confirmed that the 6 victims, including a volunteer nurse, were killed by soldiers stationed near Wat Pathumwanararm Temple. The military has always denied any involvement, despite stacks of evidence and witness accounts. HEADLINES. EDITORIAL.
Two 'Sensitive' Books Withdrawn
This story was originally on Prachatai website, but a cross-check revealed an interesting nuance.
From Prachatai Online (click on icon at right for access to this award-winning website)
9 August 2013
"When inside the palace women are not wanted and there are no women inside, who takes their place?" This question posed on Asia Books' own website [http://bit.ly/15gEJRm] that advertises the book shown on the right provides one of the controversial nuances related to the book, Nai Nai, or "Men Inside [the palace]. Given other contemporary widely circulated and accepted "truths," about high-ranking insiders and their alleged sexual orientation, the coverage, in detail, from inside the palace seems to pose sensitive questions and bring sensitive matters into open view and discussion. The actual facts behind any such reports are difficult to substantiate.
Berserk Nun Strips - Wields Knife
Disturbed Buddhist nun captured after emergency wrappings were brought in.
7 August 2013
t 14:00 hrs. on 7 August 2013, Buriram provincial police, with emergency rescue staff, received a report from residents that a nun had developed delirium. According to the report, she was chasing around monks with a pointed knife inside Khok Sawang temple, Kho Makok village, Tambol Isaan, meung district. HEADLINES
"Safe to Eat."...Really...and Pattaya?
Rayong reassurances are not found in images. See editorial.html for recent report on Pattaya. Khaosod Online
5 August 2013
Minister Insists Koh Samet Seafood Unaffected By Oil Spill
hai authorities are intent on assuring consumers and tourists alike that seafood fished off the coast in Rayong province, the centre of a recent oil spill crisis, is perfectly safe. The leakage from an underwater pipeline operated by PTT Global Chemical in the Gulf of Thailand blackened parts of the popular resort island of Koh Samet last week. Numerous tourists left the island, while many others cancelled their visits. HEADLINES
Big Chile Still Bites!
2 August 2013From the editor's desk...We had dinner at Korat's Big Chile restaurant last night, and the owner/chef Lek came over to give a warm hug to an old friend. See their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/BigChiliKorat
. I should have expected what we were served, quickly, professionally and deliciously - a great eat and with the real flavor of Mexican food by someone who knows how to cook it. Nachos to buritos to you-name-it, lots of German beers and local suds. Visit as soon as you can. Highly recommended. Tel. 044 247 469.
American Killed in Krabi
Victims Bobby Carter, left, and son from AP news story. In rollover image, Police
interview admitted killers in Sumet after they kill American over argument
. Khaosod Online
31 July 2013
n American tourist was stabbed dead while his son was critically injured after they reportedly got in fight with a group of bar musicians on a popular beach in Krabi province. The incident happened shortly after midnight on Ao Nang Beach, near a bar called Longhor Saloon. The dead man was identified as Mr. Bobby Carter, 51, originally from Texas. Police said the injured man is Mr. Adam Carter, 27. Mr. Ratikorn Romintr, 27, and his two band mates, Mr. Sathit Somsa, 40 and Mr. Nopnan Yoddecha, 26, were later arrested. See US media report here - http://cbsn.ws/16lru6I HEADLINES EDITORIAL
Another Monk Rape - 14 Year-old Girl
That Buddhism has been torn asunder in Thailand by gross malpractices within the Sangka
clergy is no longer deniable. Inside temples and out, sex, drugs, violence and vice compete
against the Dharma. KHAO SOD ENGLISH , July 29, 2013P
olice arrested a monk accused of raping a 14-year-old girl. The monk confessed to the crime, saying he was under influence of alcohol. Phra Mahasanan Atipatto, 64, was hiding in Phayao province when the police apprehended him, following complaint from the girl that he had sexually assaulted her at his former temple, Wat Bang Bua, in Bang Khen District of Bangkok. HEADLINES
Korat Mayor Suravut Squirms - Yellow Carded
Korat central district's mayor Suravut cherdchai is reported in local media as pushing for the
resignation of the local election committee chairman after the mayor was "awarded" with a
yellow card by the committee in local elections. The huge waste dump in the photo is only
one of many promises broken by municipal officials who want constant reelection. MANAGER ONLINE , July 25, 2013
uravut Cherdchai, Korat municipality mayor and son of "Jae Kiew" - Thailand's grand lady of land transport - has recently asked that the head of Korat's election commissionn step down, ostensibly because the chair handed Suravut a yellow card in recent municipal elections. The request is not likely to be met, although according to local media reports, His Honor has brought in one of friend Thaksin's lawyers to handle his appeal against the committee's actions. Headlines
. Also see editorial
15 August 2013Akeyuth Anchanbutr [en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akeyuth_Anchanbutr] returned several years ago to his birthplace, Thailand, after a twenty year absence lapsed over financial crimes. He had by then accumulated what is said to be a factor of billions in promoting oriental restaurants and related businesses while abroad. Apparently, however, not taking a lesson from the forced disappearance of Muslim human rights lawyer Somchai Neelaphaijit, he openly advocated opposition to Thaksin Shinawatra, the Thai prime minister who was overthrown in a September 2006 military coup. Unlike a like-minded media tycoon Sondhi Limthongkul, Akeyuth did not survive a uniformed killing. His body was not hidden but current forensics analysis revealed that police stories, and they can be called that, were likely false.Recently American talk show host Michael Savage, apparently outlawed from speaking in the UK, stated to listeners a painful truth - in this world, if you go after the rich and powerful to try to dig up dirt on them and bring down their fall, you are likely to be killed. "It's a fact," Savage said. Royal Thai Police suffer from a a self-smeared international image of corruption and falsehood, but overall it's hardly different from the Thai military and other state and government agencies, as well as NGOs, that have little sympathy with rights and truth and the right to speak the truth. The latest apparent fiasco with Thai police is the Akeyuth killing in which police are, of course, rumored to be involved and to have falsified evidence, moved the body and faked cause of death and so on. Mechanisms such as those now rumored in this investigation are national, with anyone's story about what happened, how and why suspect at best. Truth is often dangerous in Thailand and people do their best to stay healthy by getting along, no matter what it takes.
10 August 2013
Prayuth would do well to seek government advice before he allows state policies to conflict openly with those of the government. Sure he can insist no Army troops were involved in the murders, but that lame statement conflicts with witnesses' gut-wrenching testimony and terrible heartbreaks they suffered as family and friends died in the echo of Army denials.It's nothing new for Thailand. Whether under the Thaksin regime or earlier, Chuan Leekpai, Thailand's state officials and government tools lose little time in skipping over the who dunnit details and moving on to smoothing over yet another nationally embarrassing human rights fiasco. Prayuth and other Army staff and the state machinery behind them, never tire of making it appear the other side is not only the guilty one, but that it is the one with no justification as all in whatever it does. Perhaps Prayuth really believes what he is saying...not sure. Perhaps he knows somethng is amiss but is not saying.
Pattaya - A Recent Visit
Stubbed toe not a major injury, but electrocution was right across the street. Lightpole leaners, beware...
6 August 2013
Pattaya (incorrectly pronounced pat THA ya by most Middle Eastern visitors) is still a cheap paradise and great place to have fun. But ignorance, neglect, lying, greed and opportunism - and a foul mouth or two, can lead to disgruntled feelings. And, you have to be careful about being electrocuted by a nearby lightpole. Yes, electrocuted. I am a heart patient with defilrullator impant and consider myself lucky, still mobile, able to drive and have a good time. But I was doubly lucky this last week while in Pattaya when I happened to lean against a normal light post to keep my balance to clean sand off my feet from just walking off the beach.There is no question that the light pole should have been property grounded. It needed a ground and I was it. There are no warnings or forethought much given to such situations in Thailand, let alone in Pattaya. While public safety should be of paramount concern, it is not. Avoiding embarrassment, continuing high-flow tourism income and limiting damage to the country's false image are instead the priorities.While Thai officials are extremely unhappy, indignant and often very quick to blame the reports rather than the conditions they report, leaving dangerous conditions there for anyone to run into them is inexcusable. Thai staff are certainly skilled enough to conduct inspections and undertake repairs, and as part of this, to place signs to warn the unwary. Stop dragging your butts and instead take action before someone is killed.
Too Late to Apologize
Father and son experience Thai ire in resort of Krabi where alcohol, anger and cultural differences boils over into argument, altercation and assault, then death. 2 August 2013Once again American misjudgement over local reactions to insults and openly visible anger result in a fatality, again, an American. While last month's incident involving a Caterpillar employee led to enhanced company cultural sensitivities training and arrest, this second incident reflects a lack of awareness by American tourists, and indeed, many other nationalities, who visit the kingdom each day. Thais are extremely easly to insult and anger, and can become violent in a flash. This propensity is nt often covered in the mainstream media nor emphasized, understandably, by travel agents and hotels. Say one wrong word, give one unwelcome glance, and you may be subject to assault and murder. No, it's ot an exaggeration, unfortunately.Cultural differences are important. The Thai culture is an established hierarchy replete with indoctrinated concepts and like any other culture, also replete with false preachings and violations of normal conduct by officials and members of the public. In the case of foreigners visiting Thailand, a warnign to the wise - be aware of your surroundings, period. You are in a foreign country. You may be consuming alcohol like the locals. you do not know wheat they are thinking. You have no idea about what they will feel when you say naything except gratitude if you give them money. A short-sighted view but not one altogether false. If you are ever tempted to insult a Thai, do your absolute best not to. Extricate yourself from the situation in a non-offensive manner and get out of there. If you feel a need to file charges with police, do so with caution and not while your local foe is watching you.
Thai Monk Gone Wild - Sex, $millions&Plane!
Not one Thai authority has accused this monk of damaging Thailand's image.
BANGKOK, July 6 -
Dicipline isn't a suddenly occuring problem in Thailand, in and out of the schools, but Thai youth today are challenging to social order and stability. Confronted by massive corruption, double standards by naitonal leadership and role models, shown repeated abuses by leading figures of privilege and position without any accountability, the young are taking to the streets but not in the normal protest motif. No. These methods involve sneaky nighttime rock and bottle throwing, shootings of competing students on public buses, and lately, Chulalongkorn University students idolizing Adolf Hitler in the same way as Batman and Captain America. Just this week as well, another well-known university in Bangkok is apologizing for another stupid hazing freshmen incident - forcing them to walk naked.
Thailand just does ot get it. Politicians are not the problem, and never were. In fact, monks and politicians and so-called men and women of honor and fame are leading soem of the most hypocritical devoid-of-morality and ethics lives any greedy glutton would envy. so it is only natural that youth and individuals in all social sectors, including theSangka, follow along and get some of the bennies that others get without apparent accountability. All of these incidents damage Thailand's image - but do you hear the Thais saying so? Hardly....
|Thai Monk Gone Wild - Sex, $millions&Plane!
Not one Thai authority has accused this monk of damaging Thailand's image.
BANGKOK, July 6 -
It's tough being a monk. That old saying, "Living like a monk," is self-descriptive when discussing what is needed to be done to conduct oneself while engaged in living a life where one of the first prerequisites is celibacy. And in Thailand, it is doubly more difficult because sex is seemingly everywhere. So why not join the bandwagon and have a good time at the expense of others as it seems so easy to do these days? .
Celibacy isn't the main thing that one has to adopt when actively practicing the viniya or Buddhist doctrine. There are other, many other prerequisites. Honesty, selflessness, elimination of delusion and personal comfort, meditation, dismissal of physical things - none of this is easy, but it is made all the mroe difficult when you have no intent on trying nor does the culture in which you live care much for anything other than itself.
Thailand's fundamental problem with religion of any kind, and related philosophical paths such as Buddhism, is that pretense and self-aggrandizement are paramount to the self. Across all levels of society Thais are apt to collect, and told to gather, in worship of one form of icon or another without being taught or studying that the reason Buddhism is important, that is should be a fundamental part of their nation in a way that is truthful rather than the contemporary misleading approach, is that faith involves not just an organized approach to living and seeking of enlightenment, but that it is a very personal path and needs to be conducted in a legitimate manner. Instead Thaland has placed its corporate stamp on Buddhism by mandating that religious affairs be controlled by the Ministry of Education, in essence, and by a Supreme Sangha Council. In short, the religion has become bureaucratized but it was already corrupt. Buddha himself warned long ago that one of the four fundamental dangers to the Buddhist faith and ability of his followers to adhere would be corruption from within.
Negative Legend Persists
Some believe local authorities and those benefititng from promoting the tourist industry in Thailand
are pushing the credibility envelope with Naga Fireballs that have withstood one thing to date
- common sense. One Thai woman from Korat recently said of the non-event, "Thai people do
not accept the truth - nor do they want it."
eople are funny. When you want them to believe the truth, they deny it. When you tell them a lie, they believe. Is life so boring and uneventful that it has to be this way? Especially up in Thailand's northeast region, Isaan, in Nong Khai province where locals and enticed visitors have been lulled by legend and exploitave opportunists who will do anything for money. Even convert M16 tracer bullets into magic balls of gas that rise into the air far faster than any so-called globule of gas would be able to survive. The "oohs and ahhs" that follow each "event" drown out the echo of the rifle shot that propels these less than magical projectiles.
W ikipedia's writeup on Naga Fireballs at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naga_fireballs takes aim at bullets rather than magical serpents that fascinate wide-eyed villagers and old folks who depend on magic spirits for succor. This is not to denigrate the less-than-unique propensity for rural folks around the world we live on to believe something other than what they see. This is a common penchant for most of us. Rather than rationally weighing what it is, we speculate on what it really might be. And for Thailande's tourist industry, if Nong Khai can keep in the news, having failed to benefit much from AARP's best place int the world to retire to article, by claiming to have magical gases rising form the majestic Mekhong, why not? Say it ain't so, Sam.
RAPID TRANSIT - RAPID ERROR?
Lamtakhong political pipedream but the Piper plays on...
Thursday, 25 October 2012
Duh? Is this the message the city fathers of Korat want passed from one generation to the next as one bad, ill-conceived idea after another is pushed by a favorite son with "far-sightedness" and eventually built at sky-high costs that end up depriving rather than providing benefits? With rickshaws out of downtown Ubon and Khon Kaen, for example, they are strangely visible in Korat. On top of that, "planners" have worked together with consultants to come up withi master plans for public transportation that provide elevated ways for samlors and bicycles. All this, of course, at public expense and borrowed funds, with construction profits (30-60% of project costs) going into the pockets of...people who "go along."
During 2012, several seminars and meetings, roundtables and discussions took place in Korat at the Suranaree University of Technnology, Municipality of Korat, the governor's office and elsewhere regarding current study of a mass public transport system. This exact "solution" to Korat's burgeoning traffic mess was mentioned to this paper about a month ago or so by Korat's mayor Suravut Cherdchai when he was asked when is Korat going to solve the traffic problem. the reply meant, of course, that there was going to be no immediate solution, and as a consequence, any immediate serious endeavors from authorities to force the public to abide by simple traffic rules.
WHAT ARE STATE POLICIES?
Full spillways are far preferable to the present situation...
Wednesday, 26 September 2012
Mixed messages are bouncing back and forth between the government and the media, between the media and the media, and between the state and the government over whether it's really flooding (remember Samak's amazing insensitivity over his redefinition of flooding ("It's not flooding, only inability to drain faster.") or just the consequence of runaway construction and lack of master planning for runoff control and mitigation. In the meantime the people who are under water, forced out of their homes, or who knew it was coming but didn't do much about it are daily testament to the fact that flooding is indeed a reality, again, and that the phenomenon is both a nature and nurture one - that is, it is the result of forces of nature and result of what man has made inevitable.
One unmixed message being made clear, however, is that ever-burdened taxpayers are going to have to pay more and more and more to cover the costs of handouts to people who suffer from flooding. It brings an uncomfortable question to mind as to whether taxpayers should be shouldered with this untenable burden. Of course it is a worldwide and humane reaction to chip in and help alleviate those who suffer from any natural disaster, but in Thailand's specific case, the disaster is increasingly being made clear that it's not a natural disaster so much as it is a devil-may-care what happens to others state policy. Greed, stupidity, corruption and absolute ignorance are chipping in big to make Thailand's financial future a ruin of historic proportions.
Is flooding the problem?
people do not want to do this...
Monday, 11 September 2012
Today is September 11, 2012, and exactly eleven years ago terrorists flew airplanes into heavily populated public buildings in the United States, taking well over 3,000 lives in the process. While we remember today, we also need to remember that whether it is, as left-wing government claims say the government did it, or our Middle East allies of one ilk or the other were involved, or it was indeed an Islamofascist act as currently officially recognized as being, the odious nature of the act and those behind it will not go unanswered.
Flooding is once again taking its toll in thailand, first in the north, and then winding its inexorable path south to inundate the ancient capital of Sukhothai and thousands of homes that had, for a few months since last year's flooding remained dry if not high.
No one can, it is being said, predict flooding or really design a drainage system that works, but for some insight into the scope of the problem listen to the comment spoken this morning over Thai TV by residences of some areas who told media, "We have to buy budget to get benefits."Buy a budget? What does that mean? At first blush, it means that if residents and representatives of any given community want state funds spent for their benefit, they have to reciprocate in kind, but in advance, with either votes or hidden corruption that can't be traced. When the phrase 'at first blush' was used it was meant to underline similar mechanisms for local spending of state funds back in the United States, let alone other nations. If people want something, they are no longer going to get it just by voting. They are going to have to grease someone's palms and swallow any pride at what honesty might otherwise have offered.
Constitution Has Poison...
Photo courtesy freesource reports
Sunday, 26 August 2012
Commentary on an article in The Nation...
The 2007 Constitution is regarded by the ruling coalition leader Pheu Thai as a fruit from a poisonous tree, which is definitely poisonous and needs to be got rid off. However, their opponents see the Pheu Thai stance on the charter as aimed at serving a vested interest. As a result, the proposed amendments have led to severe conflicts in the society. Bhokin, a former Parliament president and House speaker, says the coalition would have to be patient in the manoeuvring for the rewriting of the charter so that the country could exit the "black hole" political situation. HEADLINES
Once again hardly an iota of wisdom in public servant sayings, but if we reach into the nitty-gritty of what the guy said there are a few salient points, all of which when lumped together spell the fact that the 2007 constitution was crafted with inherent errors or evne intentional provisions that make life hard for some and easy for others. Not a bit surprise, as said, but certainly worth correcting it it can be corrected. And that is the salient point once more...can "things" be righted and justice ever prevail in the kingdom? Reminding one anohter, of course, that we are already under the eighteenth constitution and no one really knows how many more will be carefully crafted and then destroyed in a blaze of nationalist glory.
An observer said that we should remind ourselves that not that long ago when the military was asked whether a provision such as "no more coups or interference by the military" could be incorporated into the constitution a national military leader smiled wistfully and shook his head "no." Big surprise there? No, of course not. It is the same rationale, however, that G.W. Bush reflected when he quipped about not finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. It was almost as if the entire war in Iraq was a joke, the same kind of joke that suggests the Thai military stay out of politics and civil strife. But for societies that are inherently corrupt, short-sighted, at odds with reality and in perpetual denial of essential human truths, does anyone really think that removing poisons from the current constitution will also help remove poisons from the rest of Thai society?
Tough Call for Court
Graphic by the Korat PostFriday, 13 July 2012
the Korat Post Avery tough decision is scheduled to be announced today that will probably reflect the unique Thai way of arriving at tough calls with a mixture of stated principles, compassion, firm resolve and need to maintain national security, honor the will of the people and so on. It's not the first time that the Thai courts have cautioned the public, and the entire nation, to remain calm in the face of an imminent court judgment that could determine the fate of the ruling party and many of its members.The decision, whatever its outcome, will be in response to filings with the Constitutional Court by pro-elite opposition party members ostensibly concerned with a stated attempt to bring down the current form of government.Article 68 of the 2007 Thai constitution reads, "No person shall exercise the rights and liberties prescribed in the Constitution to overthrow the democratic regime of government with the King as Head of State under this Constitution or to acquire the power to rule the country by any means which is not in accordance with the modes provided in this Constitution.In the case where a person or a political party has committed the act under paragraph one, the person knowing of such act shall have the right to request the Prosecutor General to investigate its facts and submit a motion to the Constitutional Court for ordering cessation of such act without, however, prejudice to the institution of a criminal action against such person.In the case where the Constitutional Court makes a decision compelling the political party to cease to commit the act under paragraph two, the Constitutional Court may order the dissolution of such political party.In the case where the Constitutional Court makes the dissolution order under paragraph three, the right to vote of the President and the executive board of directors of the dissolved political party at the time the act under paragraph one has been committed shall be suspended for the period of five years as from the date the Constitutional Court makes such order."
The Thai version reads the same, but it is the grammatical construction and possible confusion that is at question. Did the wording mean that the prosecutor was the party to refer such a protest to the court, or an outside party?
Duh!...about Says It
Graphic by the Korat Post
Thursday, 12 July 2012
the Korat Post
Now the "divine" nature of a second fraudulent explosives-detecting device and its marketers is out in the open, will people finally wisen up and realize that spending a single dollar, let alone millions, for crap and junk that is marketed to work only "under ideal conditions" is itself criminal negligence at best, and overt crime at its worst. The trouble is, will the dumb ones also be made responsible?
20 June 2012
See editor's comments on Center for Strategic and International Studies http://cogitasia.com/the-leaderboard-surapong-tovichakchaikul/#comment-4440 for comments on US-Thai strategic relations
Thailand's Got Talent
(Exposed Boobs - Benz Walks)
Too much cleavage (right), caught cultural denunciation with female judge Benz Pornchita NaSongkla (foreground in separate screen capture) walking away from the panel in protest. "For Thai culture," she said, "this is inappropriate." the Thai Ministry of Culture felt the same way. Show's producers apologize with a "Won't happen again."
"Benz" on a popular magazine cover.
Thursday, 20 June 2012
Benz, as her monnicker goes, walked away from the Thailand's Got Talent panel on 17 June 2012 when a younger female contestant shocked viewers by removing her blouse and bra, splashed her breasts with paint, and then used them to create what she told the judges was art. The video can still be viewed on Youtube, but the entire issue is what brings several questions into the foreground.
1. Why was the male audience pleased and the female audience disgusted?
2. Why were the judges and producer not earlier aware of what was going to take place?
3. Why is the Ministry of Culture upset?
4. What got into the 23 year-old contestant to work up the courage - and it took a lot - to expose herself like she did?
5. Is Thai society changing because of western inroads into its culture or are corporate interests once again ruining society?
6. Is expression in the kingdom really free, or will it never be?
7. Why wasn't censorship also put into the target area on the matter?
Perhaps the answer to no. 7 above is that because the Ministry of Culture is preserving "Thai" values and "protecting" them from wayward practices, let alone wayward thinking, that its mission in life is beyond question. Yet anyone who has had a visit from Ministry of Culture staff asking them if they are really Thai or not knows the tremendously intimidating nature such a visit can have.
Thailand Celebrates WHO Event
...sans WHO? See editorial.
A reader asks the Korat Post why WHO isn't compellingly evident on promotional material. We write to the Thai Red Cross and wait for the reply.
Thursday, 14 June 2012
The Thai Red Cross Society is one of Thailand's most active and well-attended event organizations, coordinated in kingdom by the Thai Ministry of Public Health. Today, 14 June 2012 is World Blood Donar Day, being coordinated locally by those two organizations. But a reader brought up an issue or non-issue... why is WHO not figured prominently on advertising media and being mentioned by organizers, either up to today or at the 10 June 2012 press conference the Thai Red Cross held to announce today's festivities? Thailand's news bureau, however, did publish a 31 May 2012 announcement of the event, crediting WHO, at its link to the event here. EDITORIAL.
Certainly many events in Thailand, although supposedly international and often actually promoted and organized by well-known global agencies, are treated as Thai events, or perhaps more accurately promoted only in the Thai language and "marketed" to Thais. Foreigners who happen to run into the event are, of course, welcome but their hosts fail to observe that full credit, visible and unashamed, should be given to the event's real sponsors - in this case, the World Health Organization, WHO. Most foreigners are probably unfazed by the seemingly lack of proper accreditation that comes with such events, but the question as how far to take deserved recognition as an issue and make it plain that World blood Donar Day is not just a Thai event. Is it worth it to press the issue? Thailand's other state agencies and local organizers might also be taken to task for totalyl failing to provide English language coverage to World Boxing Council and other international events held throughout Thailand from time to time. Viewers have to be trustrated by the nonchalance. Will this October's Youth Boxing event in Bangkok be bilingual?
Not Just Map Ta Phut
Car-Racing Abbot Crashes!
Tuesday, 1 May 2012
Korat Post Online Editorial
Sadness comes in comedic forms all too often. Sad is the prime minister of Thailand being so out of touch with everyday reality that she has to visit markets twice (link) just to magically discover that prices have indeed gone up. As well, environmental and industrial tragedies in Thailand (link) are often followed by complacent state and government reaction - often in ignorance, often in cowardice, often in corruption. Denial of reality and lack of simple appreciation for the human condition are not markedly Thainess traits, but stretch across the globe. Yet in Thailand they seem to prosper beyond "normal" expectations.
Believe it or not some villagers in northeast Thailand are still eating field rats - and not just because they taste better. It's often a choice of eating or not. Having been in the northeast for years, this writer has personal experience with that special relationship that Herbert Spencer called Man Versus the State (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herbert_Spencer). In what has been described as a Shakespearean-type work, Spencer's book describes the condition and consequences of the state and of man, intricately weaving a tale of woe with one world of frailty and and the other of fools. Together it is reality.
Photo courtesy Manager Online: Location, NE Province of Loei - monks are not supposed to be driving...
Tuesday, 1 May 2012
Manager Online Article
Transedited from (Original article (here )
Shame knows no bounds, apparently - if you believe Buddhist monks (and especially those at the top - should practice as they are supposed to and abide by the precepts that the Lord Buddha prescribed. But these days with monks at the Mall, wearing shoes while shopping downtown, and now...an abbot racing his car into a pole! - with Thai government ministries having grasped culture and Buddhism and prescribing how it all is supposed to work - well, apparently someone is not listening. Editorial. We are sure they have an explanation. Read on...
Maybe it's the rapidity times are changing, or perhaps global culture falling apart, or individual liberation finally taking its toll...whatever... the latest news from Loei involves a temple abbot that was driving a fellow monk to a massage session! - and hit a power pole on the way. When told of this incident a local Thai woman blithly commented that there were dozens of such cases where monks and abbots were driving vehicles. It certianly raises the issue of propriety - is it proper for a Buddhist monk, and in this case an abbot, to drive a car? The traditional, and probably accurate Buddhist opinion is absolutely no way Jose. So, then, what would a temple abbot flaunt the basic precepts of Buddhism so he could take a colleague to a massage session?
It seems that beliefs - not just theological but philosophical - are becoming more and more secular, with nonchalance the normal response to really extreme twistings of basic beliefs and tenants of core cultural values. Whether this is a good thing or not is something that will certainly be reflected in the end product sometime in the future.
Verdict Moved to 30 May
Photo from Prachatai website 30 April 2012
Monday, 30 April 2012
The Korat Post
On 30 April 2012, award-winning Prachatai editor Chiranuch Premchaiporn was informed by the Criminal Court that her verdict would not be read that day as previously scheduled, but would be read on 30 May 2012, primarily because of the huge number of documents relating to the case. Many observers have seen her case as a simple one of the state being used by vile ill-intentioned accusers bent on forcing all Thais, and foreigners in the kingdom, to keep their mouths shut, completely, about not just the monarchy but about anything the state deems inappropriate.
Yet, the flip side of the coin says that she got everything she deserved, should not have started up a website, isn't a real Thai, has caused damage to the country, and has no shame, etc. The flip side being, of course, the nonsense side. Having met this brave woman, this writer was impressed by her professionalism and sense of humility. Now she has to carry through life a sense of shame - not of herself, but the society that made her very slight incursion into a major international case of concern.
Under the Influence?
BANGKOK, April 25, 2012
arking the 60th anniversary of Thai Television and 35th anniversary of MCOT, Thailand's leading broadcasting company MCOT Plc (formerly the Mass Communication Organisation of Thailand) on Wednesday kicked off its anniversary celebration, aiming to become a media leader in the region and in the world arena.
Over the past decade, even beyond that well before Thaksin was even a thought in anyone's head, the Thai state, government and a combination of agencies, individuals, groups, ne-er-do-wells and dictators have gone beyond the call of duty in ensuring that only what was approved was said, and if not, then the speaker is punished. They have been calling it loyalty, but is it?
Send us an email to let us know what you think of censorship and media in Thailand. Email here.
Did He Know?
Sunday, 22 April 2012
Very interesting...Although math-flunking Albert Einstein was surprisingly smart, so was Pfizer. After it has spent millions and finally came up with Viagra, its market share was 92% at the beginning. But then competition came along and it dropped off to fifty percent. Is generic viagra equal to the task, safe, or dangerous? Note that the follow does not nor is intended to be medical advice or construed as prescribing action, use or acquisition.
It depends on two major factors: First and foremost are you healthy enough to take Viagra? The Pfizer and US FDA requirement for a doctor's prescription might be sufficient to underline that there is a potential not just for trademark violation, but that you could end up in a horizontal position quite different from the one you expected. Secondly, even if you are healthy enough and your doctor said it's fine, other factors could affect your health and consequences of using the drug.
Aperson might note that while generic Viagra is an alternative to the real thing, it is illegal to sell and according to various authorities, could be dangerous. But a major consideration that someone might consider ordering Generic Viagra online is cost of the real deal. In the Korat Bangkok Hospital, for example, an expatriate was informed not long ago that while the doctor found him physically able to use Viagra, that the cost of each "Blue Diamond" was 600 Baht. That is $20. Online generic products usually run from under $1 up to $2 each. Again, it is prudent to remind all that these versions may nor may not contain ingredients that are totally safe and/or equal in active ingredient context as would Viagra itself be. But when you order two dozen of the real thing and pay 14,400 Baht ($480 US), that is a lot more than paying $$60 or so that includes shipping.
Going on to a serious question, does the online generic version work? We tried to warn you above, but opportunity being what it is, and market forces of supply and demand being what they are, there are probably dozens, if not hundreds, of clients who bought the unapproved version online and found it satisfactory and accommodating. This editor does not yet have any record of generic Viagra deaths. It is also likely that the only Viagra-related deaths to date that are confirmed would be related to the real product and an unfortunate circumstance that led to the incidental death.
Readers who find this particular subject interesting have possibly experienced the benefits of this performance enhancing medicine, which not only seems to cure erectile dysfunction but also seems able to aid normal performance with a little added enthusiasm. Should a man feel ashamed to admit that he needs such an aid? Perhaps, but probably not. Today's culture treats people a bit more adult than it used to, at least in the way of public education about sex, and going in to the doctor to sit down for a brief consultation may embarrass the older generation, but can lead to a more fulfilling life.
Although the original patent for Viagra is expiring this year, a renewal already approved will protect the company's right to produce the drug until the year 2012. While Pfizer is probably not worried about its general core area of business and long-term survivability, the loss of market control over one of the century's most successful products will undoubtedly put a hole in a pocket here and there.
High-Heels Vs. Common Sense
Why is it necessary to tell motorists not to leave shoes on the floor near brake pedals?
korat's latest "accomplishment in the traffic world.
Saturday, 21 April 2012
Khao Sod Thai language newspaper
Transedited from (Original article here )
Young or old, male or female, the advice should always be the same - but on the other hand, why is it necessary to provide common sense to people who are supposed to possess it when they get behind the wheel of a car?
A story not long ago about a woman in England who brought a container of gasoline into her kitchen and poured some of it into another container, while her kitchen stove was lit...and guess what...she was burned, then some of the local press and politicians tried to blame members of the government for needlessly alarming people over gas shortages....it just smacked that common sense was totally absent in that household.
Here in Korat, Thailand this week, another demonstration of total lack of common sense demonstrated itself when a Thai woman, an adult, drove her car into a shallow pond after making it possible for the brake pedal to be blocked into position by a high-heel shoe the lady had taken off and not bothered to put two and two together to realize that leaving any object on the floor under the driver is nonsense. But today in Thailand we have thousands of motorists using cell phones as if their lives depended on being in total contact with whomever they happen to be talking with at the moment. Even motorcyclists are running around, one hand steering, another holding the cell phone next to the ear, ignoring oncoming traffic, ignoring lights, ignoring basic human consideration of others. And what do thai authorities do about any of this? The usual nothing.
While alarmists now scare radio listeners with stories of how the world is going to Hell, one can't help but wonder if at least some of it is true from the way people are totally ignoring the inconveniences they cause to others and the very real dangers their behavior poses to the general community. Of course we can understand official hands-off approach to all of this because votes matter. Complaining to residents of a community that they should not be blocking any, much less half or more of a major roadway is certain election death.
Guilty and Forced to Admit It
No legal counsel, police-compelled "press conference." Justice?
Friday, 20 April 2012
Manager Online report and Korat Post Commentary
Transedited from (Original article here )
Suspects in Thailand being held in remand by police through the the Thai "Justice System" are most often put on parade, without any legal counsel or attorney (state-provided or personally sleeted) in a public confession and frequent enactment of their crimes, albeit not yet having gone through a legitimate court trial. Such "events" are arranged by police who use these sessions as self-aggrandizing opportunities to promote favorable public image and engender public support for their actions.
Several years ago an unfortunate but effective collective protest by major police officials led to cancellation of a government move to transfer the Royal Thai Police out of the powerful Ministry of Interior and into the Ministry of Justice where, by way of mention, Dr. Pornthip Rojanan is assigned as head of the Forensics laboratory there. the good doctor and the police have often been at loggerheads given clear and present evidence that Thai police were involved in falsification of forensic evidence in many cases, and that police corruption also has often interfered in the process of justice in Thailand. In thousands of other civil and criminal cases in Thailand, performance and transparency of reports of police behavior in these cases has almost always been secret or biased in favor of the police collectively or specific police officials who are in senior positions and well-capable to making people disappear should they insist on "justice."
While state machinery per se in Thailand insists that it is continually working on improving internal procedures and has made admirable progress in accommodating measures to ensure prevention of human and civil rights, nothing could be further from the truth. Thai society and culture are so intrinsically enveloped in a self-righteous eternal campaign to present positive spins on all areas of operations, and have often blocked or completely dropped legitimate investigations into criminal wrongdoing by the police. Putting yet another criminal on public pillory such as this latest one satisfied national ego but does nothing to safeguard rights.
Reconciliation - Dead Before it Begins
18 April 2012
The people's Alliance for Democracy, the entrenched royalist activist group which played a major part in exposing alleged wrongdoings of the former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who, after five years of being a criminal fugitive still can't return to the kingdom without facing a jail visit, recently announced that it was filing charges against 416 members of the majority government parliamentarians for wrongfully amending the Thai constitution, particularly Article 291 which stipulates how the constitution can be amended. One thing that was not included in the methods was military coup.
And that seems to be the sole method in Thailand that can be used with relative impunity to rip to shreds any constitution and then those who destroyed it, the military and their string pullers, put together their own version of a constitution, ram it through an interim parliament, and then the new version gets approved. All in a coup's work.
With the PAD once again on the warpath, the outlook for reconciliation is not good. But it was dead from the word go. The adamant refusal of various parties in Thailand to absolutely refuse to see the other side of the coin is legion. that's partly why criminal defamation and lese majeste laws are still used. They maintain silence and compel conformity.
How It Is?
Can it be this bad?
"The US is just the battering ram."
17 April 2012
The Korat Post Online
ARepublic Broadcasting Network radio program host of Cutting Through the Matrix today said it:"It's not the US - the US is just the battering ram." If you haven't heard about scary conspiracies lately, read on as a couple of updates on news in circulation that may put you ill at ease...and should.
The RBN is a bit of a left-wing media organ, rather obstinate and persistant, but also revealing in what the Executive Branch, Congress and the Courts - the three pillars of our constitutional freedoms - have done to destroy democracy and upsurp our rights as Americans to make them even more diminuitive that those enjoyed by the people of North Korea or Cuba. Accomplishing such a feat is not to be dismissed easily. At issue is just how so many freedoms and rights were pushed aside, and how national security suddenly became the prayer word on everyone's lips while Americans were allowed to become subject to legal kidnapping and murder based solely on suspicions that they are terrorists. Surely terrorism, in this instance, is that of the state, not of the people.
Is Phuket Still Safe?
Phuket residents take to streets 16 April 2012. Will another Big One hit?
Photo courtesy Manager Online
17 April 2012
It depends on whether there is another quake, flood, other natural disaster or a man-made tragedy helped along by corruption and wanton negligence.
Phuket is one of the main jewels of the Orient, to be sure, a veritable paradise - albeit crowded, hot and corrupt - and everyone who can afford it likes going there, despite its distance from Bangkok or even further, from capital cities in Europe and the United States. So when a small earthquake jolted residents out of their homes and away from the crowded beaches on 16 April 2012, people rightfully asked, "Is it safe here? Am I in danger? Those still back home were asking, "Should I go?"
When a traveler considers visiting Phuket or is already there, the historical concerns now happen to be whether there is a likelihood of an earthquake or tsunami, and if so, what to do about it? The issue is not dissimilar to considering what to do in the middle of New York during 9/11, or being anywhere on the planet during an emergency or natural disaster. The following items should be considered when deciding what to do and how to do it.
1. Assess your immediate vicinity and judge whether your person and others near you are in immediate physical danger. this is why general advice to flee from inside buildings is given.
2. Assess the vicinity itself to determine whether it will remain safe or not. If the situation involves a fire, for example, you may need to relocate not just for the fire and possible crowds fleeing, but to make way for emergency equipment, etc.
3. No one knows how much time a person has, whether until the end of life or just standing in an elevator. While alive and able to move, then, make the most of it by continuing to assess the situation and the environment. Think but don't panic. Panic gets in the way of reason and logic and organized behavior.
4. Should you worry about personal belongings in an emergency like an earthquake? Yes and no. Again, assessment is important, as is luck and occurrence of random events. You can afford to lose belongings but not members of your family, or your own life. Be conservative but appropriate.
Many people are forecasting the End of Days sometime in the near future. Hollywood is replete with disaster movies and horror flicks showing aliens destroying the planet or mantle shifts that melt Hawaii and Los Angeles and move Europe four thousand miles, and so on. The end is around the corner for all of us, sooner or later, but why expedite the process? Take measures, keep researching on how to protect yourself personally and your loved ones and friends. Listen to authorities, but also listen to your own conscience. Don't panic.
Will A Year's Praying Help?
13 April 2012
THE KORAT POST โคราชโพสต
A recent campaign by the Thai government, vanguarded by the Ministry of Health and the ministry of Education-overlooked Sangka Council urges Thai youth to pray throughout the year in what is promised to be an effective way of casting the sin of alcohol consumption, and all accompanying other vices and bad habits, to the Devil where they belong. While in principle a good idea, in reality the idea may be what it was said to be by a Red Shirt radio hostess - nonsense. After all, "good Thai Buddhists" have been praying before, after, and between holidays and attending temple fanfare after fanfare, and has Thailand's social denigration, let along alcoholism per se, gotten any better? the consensus seems to be not.
When Luanta Mahabua was still alive, he forcefully called Watpa Salawan in Korat a "Toilet in fundamentals" because he knew what was going on inside the temple and how politicized much of Buddhism has become in the kingdom. A frank speaker, he was not afraid to call a spade a spade. When a lesser mortal among us, however, such as a female Red Shirt radio hostess, attempts to call a Buddhist spade what it is, she is criticized and has to take a month off just to calm Thai society that has been cajoled into thinking that Buddhism itself is under attack when it is not, but it is rather the way Buddhism is being mispracticed and malpracticed in the Land of Smiles. Everything seems to need a campaign with glowiong admiration for wonderous works and fine improvement of the spirit, of selflessness and forgiving, of tolerance and ocmpassion. But all of these honorable human traits are thrown out the window by the very people professing to be qualified to teach them as they pounce upon critics who often know what they are talking about.
In this latest roundhouse of "Smack the woman down" we have two Red Shirts vying off against one another; one a monk in a senior position, the other a radio hostess. Yet when we read the criticism from the monk, who makes a big case ouf of how much better looking the hostess' tits could have been - if they were volumptuous and white - we get an idea of the absense of Buddhism doctrine on the part of those who are supposed to be spreading and preserving it.
Keystone Cops? Thai policewomen dancing in the streets. Still another agency insult to women?
Photo courtesy of the Bangkok Post, original story here.
7 April 2012
THE KORAT POST โคราชโพสต
It's one story we are not buying. Not this time. With gender discrimination a major problem in the kingdom and exploitation of women for sex and domesticated slavery, putting female police officers on the streets to dance for Songkran is just another demeaning idea and misapplication of principles to where they are once again, being maligned.
"Naked, barefoot and in the kitchen" is just about the ultimate male chauvinist description of where women belong. This ages-old prejudice might find smiles at the bar but does not bring any at home, in the office or on the streets in Thailand where women have, indeed, a tough time escaping daily sexual-related prejudice ranging from leering smiles to actual physical contact, including rape.
Thailand has been cited time and again for one human rights violation after another, by one human rights organization after another, for sexual exploition, exploitation of women and children and labor and unreasonable inhumane laws that deprive everyone in the kingdom of first, protection from violation, and secondly, timely satisfaction once violation of human rights has taken place. In this latest instance, it might be fun for some Thais to be seen dancing in the street to celebrate the country's New Year, but isn't making policewomen do so, in uniform, not only thoughtless but once again putting the rubber stamp on the fact that women in Thailand are playthings rather than equals?
We suggest that all Thai state agencies and private operators throughout the kingdom really begin to seriously look at this issue, and in a simple but important step, to remove the prefix "woman" from all uniformed and professional positions that women occupy in the kingdom, from inside the military to the police to the medical profession, and beyond. We don't need to know if we are walking in to see a female doctor, just that it's a doctor. Thai society doesn't need to be told that a female major is visiting the seminar, only a major. Let's get the gender equality show on the road, and do it without gender dances. The Royal Thai Police don't need to entice tourists with cute Thai women who happen to be police. They need better police protection and a lot less police corruption. They know about the two and word is getting around. Thais should not be playing games with a serious problem like terrorism to save tourism by playing upon sexism. We are not saying this new act was intentional in a negative way, but that's often how prejudice is maintained...incidentally and without conscious intent.
1 April 2012
Jobs, Government, Consultants and Jobs
The Post Publishing Public Company Limited
Bangkok Post Building
136 Na Ranong Road, Klong Toey
Bangkok 10110 Thailand Tel: +662-240-3700 Fax: +662-240-3666
If one thing is evident in these trying times, it’s that people want work, people need work, people must work. It’s also evident that political leadership across the board is challenged by these needs. Talking the talk – getting elected – and walking the walk – fulfilling campaign pledges – are often something completely different. It’s when “the machine” puts together a winning team, one that knows what it needs to do and how to do it that people are provided jobs and income and the opportunity to taste the good life.
2012 may not fulfill its Mayan prophesy but across the globe people – Thais, Americans, Africans, Arabs, Persians, Japanese and the people of over 150 countries are all seeking personal achievement, with the first item on the plate being survival, and behind survival, jobs.
The Thai government’s April 1, 2012 effective 300 Baht a day minimal wage will hopefully work the way it is designed. It will put more money in the pocket of the Thai worker, and for employers, contribute toward making them more competitive in a world that is changing and will change much more. For decades traditional Thai business operators, from the mom and pop stall to the local magnate, have failed to catch up to meeting demand with supply – supply of not just products and services, but a convenient, comfortable and efficient, as well as cheap, supply of products. Such companies as Lotus and Carrefour, and in a local setting such as Klang Plaza in Nakhonratchasima, have accepted and met the challenge of providing these very human needs. Of course getting these level of services eliminates many, or even most, of the mom and pop operations. This is not a welcome development to the moms and pops whose family income depends on their retail operations, but it does force those in business to reassess the way they do business and to make changes…or fail.
From my years of observation of the local Thai business community, I’ve seen that generally vital investment steps are either ignored or intentionally disregarded…with fatal results to the new business or existing businesses. Market research is scoffed at, personal assumptions are prejudicially prominent in decision making, and the need to retain two vital parts of a business – honesty and cash – is overlooked.
Foreign consultants like Boston Consulting Group, and many more, can and do provide close liaison with major company management to steer the business ship through sometimes rough waters. On a more local level, smaller Thai operations need to go through the steps of market study, competitive analysis, financial survivability and impact on personal holdings and family life, and a dozen other things that will either make or break the company.
Click to visit PETA website.
26 March 2012
Transedited from Manager Online (original Thai article)
Media reported that on 25 March 2012, some twenty Thai elephants that had been sent to Burma under contract to haul teak logs out of forests had to return to Thailand recently to escape forest fies in the neighboring nation. According to Manager Online's report, forty Thai elephants had been contracted but half returned as a result of the burning.
While Thai elephants have a special symbolic value in the eyes of foreigners and Thais alike, the facts behind how elephants re treated in their homeland is anything but anything to smile about. Elephants re often mistreated and expoited as a tool to bring income to those raising them only to exploit these peaceful animals. See a long report on why Thailand isn't solving its elephant exploitation problem here.
City officials reviewed a proposal back in 2011 for an expensive overhead skybus to alleviate the city's traffic congestion. But is this really the solution?
Artist rendering above from Korat Municipality Thai language booklet Smile Korat. Inside substandard English reads, "Korat city of smile." Still, no 's.' Or comma, etc.
18 March 2012
Transedited from Korat municipality publications and online news
The problem with political visionaries and otherwise astute city planners is that not infrequently their aspirations range into the upper reaches of financial practicality, and even, upon occasion, actually overlapping the totally impractical. In the meantime, there are often persistent questions as to whether new dreams are only to occupy meeting agenda or whether they are really results of vision and benevolence for the people who are the ones that are to be served. The issues are philosophical to a great extent, but as Korat has had more than its share of expensive visionary-style projects that have either gone bust or become largely unused (and everyone knew this would be the case before the projects were budgeted, designed and built) it is worthwhile being forewarned that such overreaching has tremendous financial implications and tends to act as yet another tool for procrastinators who should be dealing a lot more effectively with much easier problems - to wit, in this case, Korat's horrendous traffic problems that have come about in part because the same people making plans did little or nothing about traffic. That is, little or nothing effective.
When The Mall Group came to Korat many years ago to hold its first media seminar on its plans to proceed with construction of the Mall right on the edge of the city's main thoroughfare, this newspaper founder specifically asked the Mall management what they were planning to do about the significant impact that Mall traffic would have on this major artery. There was little response to the question, other than a seeming look of discomfort. Perhaps imagination. Yet, the Mall was built and true to form it has had a significant bottleneck impact on all traffic in the area, traffic which services connections to Khon Kaen, Big C, downtown, the main route between Korat and Bangkok, and a lot more. This is only one area that city managers have perhaps not fully considered the implications when approving local construction. There are several areas in the municipal district of Korat that need urgent assessment and suggestions for alternative implementation, including but not limited to:
1. moving the nearby military airport out to Chalermphrakiet, and relocating civilian operations at the 450 million Baht facility there to the Korat city airbase.
2. assessing locations of all schools in the municipality, government and private, and planning a decade-long relocation to areas outside the city for at least those with major traffic impact.
3. relocating all military operations out of the city to Chalermphrakiet, which would free up huge areas for private real estate investment.
4. develop a couple of workable solutions to the Mall traffic patterns to alleviate impact on the main artery - Friendship Highway.
5. implement real zoning in the city. Rather than allowing tuk-tuk repair shops to open beside restaurants and motorcycle shops to open next to clinics, control development and encourage relocation to better areas outside the city.
Every city and community wants investment, but not every taxpayer wants to grow up, or have his or her children and grandchildren, grow up in an environment made filthy, crowded, unhealthy and inconvenient by short-sighted political visionaries who have their own interests at heart much more than those of the voters who put them in office. Photo opportunities, positive PR, self-serving functions and lack of transparency...all perfect infrastructure for a project like the sky bus(t).
Win-Lose Standoff Impedes Progress
17 March 2012
The Nation (Original link)
Despite so much talk about the need to achieve national reconciliation, Thailand still needs to create a climate for understanding, Wutisarn Tanchai [Thai language profile], King Prajadhipok's Institute (KPI) deputy secretary-general, said. Wutisarn, who led the study on "sustainable reconciliation", said compromise was tough, because both camps were seeking to defeat one another.
The study, commissioned by the parliamentary subcommittee on national reconciliation, concludes that there is a need to not just discuss the legal and judicial aspects of the conflict, but also to discuss its root causes, including a "reflection on power relations in Thai society". See 2010 article from Asian Human Rights Commission citing all talk and no action. Headlines.
Reading through the article provides both hope and disappointment. On the one hand, the citations toward both sides needing to adopt a compromise attitude is at least recognition that compromise is necessary. On the other hand, the the article cites, "He urged people to 'abandon the idea' of punishing the 2006 coup-makers and also slammed the media for providing one-sided information, which he says is only fanning hatred and exacerbating the political rift. Meanwhile, Methas Anuwat-udom, a member of the research team, warned that it would be dangerous for society if people did not have the space to express their political dissatisfaction." This idea of once again (still?) abandoning the idea of punishing the Thai military for intruding into politics and creating yet another backdrop of political instability is an oft-used plea ostensibly to get the show on the road but in fact designed, in the unique way that Thais handle most major issues, of putting them on the back shelf to gather more dust for the next revolt against repression.
Throughout decades and past dozens of shredded constitutions that Thai military and other armed forces - both so-called volunteer and uniformed members - have all willfully used sword and gun to silence dissent. Those who stand behind the principles used in exercising such authority have demonstrated in Thailand that they are not open to opinion or change. This is the catalyst for further conflict, not the decades-long frustration by a disenfranchised sector of society that turns to violence when nothing else works, that finds a new hero when its old ones do not offer justice or recompense.
SMS Messages "Compel" Imprisonment
16 March 2012
Translated from Thai language version of Prachatai (link)
In an expected decision, the Thai Supreme court (Dika) upheld the Court of First Instance judgment against Amphon Tangnoppaku (Ah Kong), an elderly Thai grandfather alleged (not proven) to have sent highly offensive SMS messages to a senior staff member of the Prime Minister' office.
The case of this 61 year-old grandfather has irked the international community for several reasons. First, of course, is the twenty year sentence given to him by the Thai judiciary, viewed among contemnor academics, activists, politicians, experience professional media staff and religious groups as not only excessive but downright unnecessary. Secondly, the fact that this poor man is 61 years old, and rather than being given something more humane like community ser vice assignments for a given period of time, has been slammed into prison for more of offending the recipient of his alleged SMS messages rather than offending others. It is a tough call if you are a Thai traditionalist...to criticize the sentence...but at the same time one has to wonder whether Buddhism allows society to hand down such severe sentences in the first place. Finally, Thailand has gone out of its way over the last decade to smack the world in the face with criminal defamation and lese majest?? cases and metaphorically giving the bird at anyone who finds such mayhem as unacceptable.
Nalinee Facing Resistance
On a US blacklist, Thai minister Nalinee Taweesin fights shadow of past
Graphic courtesy Yahoo pictures. Cartoon by ÍÃØ³ ÇÑªÃÐÊÇÑÊ´Ôì Arun Wacharasawat,
Facebook page www.facebook.com/people/ÍÃØ³-ÇÑªÃÐÊÇÑÊ´Ôì/100001686447746
11 March 2012
From Agencies, Reports
Most recently written up by Yellow Shirt Flagship ASTV Manager Online, Thailand's minister assigned to the Prime Minister Mrs. Nalanee Taweesin is in the car but can't put the keys in the ignition. Her appointment by the Yingluck shinawatra-led government has raised eyebrows and prompted allegations not just against the appointee but against the prime minister and the Pheua Thai government. Headlines.
The Manager Online, a staunchly Yellow Shirt media group, today cited the lack of ethics over the appointment as not just a lack on the appointee's part but of the government itself. While the Manager Group, which owns the website, is expected to make such accusations they are difficult to dismiss given the public blacklisting from the United States and frequent calls for Nalinee to step back down and move on with a different career. It is not the first time, however, that the Thai government and political appointees - around the world - have been put under the spotlight because of dubious or outright "undesirable" background. As it seems the Yingluck government does not plan to ask Nalinee to step down, only public and private pressure will achieve that objective.