Bits and pieces

Some things that caught my attention, not in a particular order.

Red ideologists

From Pravit’s interview with a red cyber warrior on Prachatai. This cyber warrior is described as “Luke Chao Na Thai” or “Thai Peasant’s Son”, an influential red-shirt intellectual whose articles under the pen name is widely followed by many middle-class red shirts. “Luke Chao Na Thai” was educated in Thailand and England. He is a bureaucrat in his mid forties who kept his real identity secret due to his bureaucratic status.”

Right now, the society is already divided into red and yellow. There are no more non-partisan people left. Why should we care for yellow shirts since they…

That is straight from horse’s mouth – any non-red is yellow, and we don’t care about them. Enough said.

And another quote:

If they abandon [Thaksin] their power will diminish by 60 per cent.

I always thought exactly the same thing – red ideologists have zero credibility on their own, without Thaksin’s fans they’d have zero following, yet they boast of speaking for the majority.

Weasels and jackals, that’s what first comes to mind. They want Thaksin to win his war, destroy his opponents, so that they can come and declare a victory for themselves. Hyenas is another fitting animal.

Luke Chao Na wasn’t speaking of himself there, btw, he was speaking of middle class reds with socialist thinking, and he gave some names, too – Ji Ungpakorn and Dr Weng.

I hope there are some “reds” who really want to ditch Thaksin and fight on the strength of their own convictions but it’s been three years already, without Thaksin they remain unknown and unheard of.

PTP pitches in

PTP has called for House dissolution, too. That must put more pressure on Abhisit, though it’s not clear yet if these calls are genuine. First it was Chavalit’s initiative, then their paper leader, Wichaidit, came with the call of his own. It might get traction within the party ranks, it might not. Neither of these two mean very much in PTP power pyramid.

Income growth

Saw this article about Thailand’s income gap on Bangkok Post. The link won’t stay for very long, even the image link might get eventually broken.

The key point is that TRT and its populist policies are not the solution to poverty at all. Look at the numbers, from 1995 to 2006:

Income growth 1995-2006

People on the Eastern Seaboard had 125% growth, more than a double of that for Isan, and people in non-TRT areas, South and Central, still grew faster. North made good gains but from a much lower baseline.

Look at the difference between Isan and the East, 36k per year comparing to 290k! No amount of easy loans or 30 baht health-care can ever breach this gap. Never.

What they need is actual broad based development, guided and guaranteed by the state.

Or how about this message to Isanese themselves – if you had voted for Democrats all these years you could have made three times more money than now, everybody else did, but you stuck with Thaksin instead and so remain hopelessly poor.

Red reception

Right now reds are still on high from their Saturday show, but what they might overlook is that they all they saw was only a bunch of reds. It was “if a you don’t go to a rally, then the rally comes to you” moment, but the reception among the general population remains unknown.

People are not hostile, largely indifferent, imo, but that might change to being annoyed if reds keep going on like that, and they plan to. So far Bangokians let reds express themselves to their satisfaction but, I suspect, the perception gap only keeps growing, with moderates failing to give their approval to the red cause while reds celebrating like they’ve already won the elections.

Another point that is forgotten by the media – exactly a year ago reds were a bunch of merry men, too. They kept singing and dancing through the first days of Songkran and they were largely tolerated, just like now. They overestimated their support, or rather mistook tolerance for blessings.

It seems they are making the same mistake again.

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9 Responses

  1. For those old reds its a lesser of 2 evils, and slay one dragon at a time, equation.

    The major evil goes back long before Thaksin and is clearly at the root of most of the ills in Thailand today.
    (Just have a look at where the wealth is concentrated, the composition of the PC, the way the LM laws are used, and the way military coups are a regularity – thats just for starters to give you a clue who are the real hyena, jackals & weasels in Thailand)

    After all his talk of democracy, fairness & justice, a resurgent Thaksin will be much easier to remove than the old evil (and who knows Dr T might even surprise us in his next reincarnation and turn out to be a reformed character, even on of the good guys:)

    • What’s got into you, Hobby? Your mood swings are starting to worry me.

      Ok, I get your point, but where you are wrong is that reds see your particular target as evil. I bet even the middle class reds don’t see it that way.

      At this point I think majority of reds on the streets are slaves to both Thaksin and red ideologists.

      What do you think of an emerging picture that during all this cheering for Thaksin as the champion of the poor, TRT dominated areas, in fact, grew slower than the rest of the country?

      I feel the numbers need more exploration but this my first thought.

  2. I think the numbers stuff has been done already over a Pundits site 2 or 3 years ago.

    I personally think it’s irrelevant to the current debate, as the core issue is that a group of people have hijacked democracy (using very undemocratic means).

    If Isaan people want to vote for Joe Blogs, let them.
    If they vote in enough numbers to elect him, then let him form government.
    If he does not govern to the peoples liking, let them remove him at the ballot box.

    It’s a simple story I keep telling over and over, what’s so difficult to understand?

    • So they didn’t have enough numbers to vote for their Joe Blogs last time. It’s not like their party had been very democratic about forming their coalition either.

      • I don’t care who wins the vote – just think it would be nice for a change that there once the people have had their say. there be no interference from military figures or persons outside of or ‘above’ politics,
        Remember only one side in this current battle has any claim to democratic credentials – and it’s not the the yellows!

        It’s a rotten system, and sooner or later the people (and the world) will wake up to it – irrespective of draconian laws, silky tongued spin doctors, and useful idiots:)

        • Thaksin is outside and above the politics now yet he still interferes. The fist month after 2007 elections MPs spent more time in Hong Kong than in Bangkok, and that is despite Thaksin swearing he washed his hands off.

          It works both ways, you know.

          • Thaksin, Thaksin Thaksin – beware the big bogeyman!

            Until the military coup is undone, Abhisit is the illegitimate – and he knows it!

  3. Thaksin is undeniably behind the red movement and PTP and the government should be aware of his moves even when reds are not on the streets.

    The military coup will never be undone.

  4. “The military coup will never be undone”

    Agree, and we know who to blame for that don’t we?
    (clue: it’s not your bogeyman:)

    and Abhisit will never be legitimate, unless he suddenly grows the balls to go to an election that was not rigged in his favour (which I expect his backers are working on at this very moment:)

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