Bored with Thai Politics

Sticker says “Bored with the PAD Mob”

When the The People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) first started I fully supported their stance. I thought that it was great that the government had this very public watchdog that weren’t afraid of speaking up when they saw that something was wrong. This was exactly what Thailand needed. Many of the politicians and civil servants were corrupt only because they believed (and quit often rightly so) that they could get away with accepting bribes. Everyone seemed to be doing it and getting away with it. So, they thought, why not them too?

I haven’t exactly gone anti-PAD as I still believe that there is a need for a watchdog. However, I think that they have started to lose their direction and their personal vendetta against Thaksin is starting to get obvious. I lost a lot of respect for them when they invaded the studios of NBT and forcibly occupied government house. Both of these were acts very similar to a coup where a group tries to take over a government. History shows that when your coup fails, you are tried for treason and often executed.

I was never that keen on Thaksin. In particular, I wasn’t happy with some of his shady deals on behalf of the country and the drugs war where he forced provincial governors to find a certain quota of drug dealers every month. This ultimately led to 2,500 deaths. Many of them innocent and none of them guilty in the eyes of a court of law. However, you had to admire him for his efforts to shake things up and get things moving. He was also the only prime minister to see his term through to the end and then do it again.

The problem with watching the PAD rally on ASTV and their English news channel on Thailand Outlook, is that you are bombarded constantly with an anti-Thaksin and anti-government stance. So many of the news anchors and reporters have a tendency of saying “we” when talking about the activities of the PAD. Many of them didn’t even bother to try to hide their lack of impartiality. It is true that NBT were just as bad when it came to their reporting of events. But, no-one can accuse the NBT of inciting violence or urging the “mob” to occupy the studios of ASTV.

Some people say that a lot of people have now started to become sympathetic towards Thaksin and his cronies. Heaven forbid it, but I think it is true. I am starting to feel a little sorry for the guy. But then, he must be laughing on the inside now, as the PAD have clearly shown to the UK government what a mockery they are making of the seat of the Thai government and the court system and how easily they are getting away with it. The PAD leaders all have arrest warrants out for them. But, instead of surrendering themselves to the police, they have barricaded themselves inside government house. The government and court system is in disarray and it is unlikely that the UK government will now extradite Thaksin back to Thailand.

A new movement has started over the last few weeks where people have being showing their boredom of the politics and speeches of both the PAD and DAAD. The latest polls also show that the majority of people don’t want to take sides and just want everything to get back to normal. Or at least as normal as can be. This new group has printed a million of the stickers that you can see at the top of this article. They are distributing them around Bangkok. It says “Bored with the Mob”. That’s really how I feel. Though, I would like to change it a little so that it says “Bored with Everyone!” I think everyone on both sides have gone too far and they should stand back and maybe count to ten.

Thais fighting Thai will never lead to anything good. The world is entering a deep depression with the collapse of financial markets. We need our leaders to concentrate on these matters before it becomes too late. As a businessman in Thailand and also a tax payer here, I do so worry about the future. I cannot see any end to this strife unless both sides are willing to compromise. To sit down at the table and talk. It needs to be done. And it needs to be done now. Unfortunately, there are no signs of that going to happen. Even though we now have a new prime minister, the PAD refuses to give him a chance to prove himself. Flushed with their success of bringing down the prime ministers of two elected governments, the PAD will not rest until they bring down Somchai Wongsawat, the 26th Prime Minister of Thailand.

Surely their “use by date” has now expired? Will this ever end?

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