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Red rally day 1

There’s a lot of coverage elsewhere, I’ll just try to complement it.

Little exchange between a professional woman, fluent in English and a very devout Buddhist, and her old boss, wife of a navy admiral, among other things.

Old boss, visibly upset: I hear there are many red shirts in our company.
Woman: Yes, Khun Kai, but we have democracy, people can think whatever they want…
Old boss: I know…, but what ARE they thinking?

Yes, what are they thinking? It doesn’t make any sense.


The woman explaining herself: We are not red or yellow, but we believe there’s Phra Siamdevatiraj watching over Thailand, he’ll make sure everything is alright.

Her husband is a veteran of 1992 but he missed 2005-2006 because they had a little daughter. He stayed away from 2008 PAD protests. A few days ago he drove his red shirt friend to Imperial Lad Prao, red shirt HQ in Bangkok. He reported that there were many reds there, but what impressed him the most was life size images of Thaksin dressed in a royal garb.

The same woman, his wife: I don’t care what they do to ammart, but I won’t let them touch the King.


Today’s traffic was very light. Where I drive schools were closed for weeks already, and on the way from suburbs the traffic was as usual, employees were going to work, but when it came to populated, business areas, there was no business traffic, no pickup trucks running business errands, and they normally make a crucial difference when they come out to do their stuff, on Mondays, for example. Friday is a light business day for their drivers but today was lighter than ever.

The same was casually observed on the western approach to the city, too. It seems reds scared small businesses off.

At my place of work most of the staff had only half day, with afternoon off, to avoid the reds.

Later in the day I overheard someone blaming something being not done on reds. That was at the local Tops.

I think the government won the round one, they got people scared of reds.

Reds themselves had lower numbers than expected, too, but that doesn’t mean anything for now. Without upcountry support there’s no snowball effect, no critical mass to get every sympathizer out on the streets.

Tomorrow will be round 2. Tulsathit of The Nation concluded today’s twits with a news of a hundred thousand red shirts gathering in Nakhon Sawan, he thought they would boost red numbers considerably when they reach Bangkok. Thai TV, on the other hand, reported that there were only two thousand reds assembled there, from upper Central region, waiting for Northern reds to arrive later on.

Someone is being wrong here.

Nation’s video of Nakhon Phanom reds being paid thousand baht bills for signing up is probably a new viral thing. Well, that’s the old news.

Days of people getting off their asses for the cause without any concern for expenses are gone. PAD had to provide for their folks, and so do reds. Going from Nakhon Phanom to Bangkok for a big rally is not like posting an angry message on the Internet, expenses need to be met. Does it make reds a paid mob? Wrong terminology.

They are certainly not as dedicated, and they’d probably run away when the going gets tough, but it doesn’t mean they don’t believe in their cause at all. They do, just not as much. The days of one side being completely white and the other being completely black are gone. If one expects a “black and white” coverage he’s going to be very disappointed.

There will be no decisive victory in this conflict, you can’t describe the battle in black and white, it’s these little shades of gray that would make a difference. And that difference might not be even seen by a naked eye, try #FAFAFA vs #FFFFFF – looks like a big difference in code but can you tell the difference in color?

We just have to figure out the way to reduce the contrast of this image, it’s not that big, regardless of the perception.


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