Category Archives: Stories from the Thai Press

Don’t Teach Your Child to “Don’t, Don’t & Don’t “!

(The following article is a brief translation from the Scoop Page of the Thai language ‘Khom Chat Leuk’ newspaper – with a little added commentary)

How many times have we have read in the newspapers about some teenager who has run away from home because of supposed-shame; that is – in regards to having had sex….?

Why? Because Thai parents constantly teach their children that ‘sex is wrong’. Parents believe that if their child has sex before the right time – ‘she’ has to been taught again. ‘She’ has to believe her mother. She must not have a boyfriend. She must not have sex. She must not bunk off school. If ‘she’ can not adhere to what her mother teaches her, then she will upset her mother and only bring shame on the family.

Thisan Nakhorn, Director of the Kanchanaphisek Home For Youth put across an good example of how a lot of Thai parents ‘teach their kids the wrong way’. When Thai kids are asked to express past experiences when they were in the wrong, they feel stressed. When they have had to confront their parents in such instance, their parents have given them no way out, no option. “Just don’t do it again!” “You are very bad”.

One girl from a well-to-do family of a decent social status had this to say “In the evenings I had to sit there and watch the TV with my mom and dad. If we saw any immoral behaviour committed by some teenagers then my parents would shout out that that they were very bad children. And they would teach that me I must never act like that! Otherwise, if I did, I would upset them very much and make them lose face”.

It was this very girl who would eventually run away from home after she became pregnant. Why? “I just didn’t have the guts to confront my parents about my pregnancy, they would have hated me and not accepted me anymore”.

Thisan had this to advise on teaching our children the correct way “If we teach our kids that so many things are bad – ‘Don’t have associate with this friend/that friend’ ‘Don’t go out at night’ ‘Don’t smoke’ ‘Don’t take drugs’ ‘Don’t have sex’ etc… then that is wrong. We have to give them other options and understand the state of present-day society. It’s best not to stand there and dictate orders to your children in some kind of old-fashioned way. Teach them what is right and what is wrong but do it nicely, don’t try and put fear in them”

Thisan went on to say “Give your child a chance. Don’t stubbornly teach them ‘Sex is very bad it will ruin your studies, ruin your future. Teach them instead that if they have a sweetheart to tell their parents, let them ask for advice and teach them about correct contraception. Let them feel that if they have done wrong – they will have the courage to say so, they won’t feel under pressure, they won’t feel worried and they will be able to face the facts about what has happened.

It has to be said that so many Thai children and especially girls are in a very pitiable predicament. If they are under 18 and become pregnant, they have no way out, no choice. They are not allowed to continue their studies (government policy). They have little chance of being able to bring up their child in a decent way. In fact, they are made to feel like criminals!

Let us, from now, teach our children ‘The Right Way’.

The Death of Jatukham Fever

The following is a brief translation of a headline story from Wednesday’s Thai language ‘Thai Rath’ newspaper.

Dozens of Jatukham amulet vendors and customers made another harsh complaint last week to the ‘Office of the Consumer Protection Board’ this time in regards to the latest brand of Jatukham called ‘Super Profit Rich’, which turned out to not be as nice as promised in the original advertisements. In fact, the Board has received more than 200 complaints this year from disgruntled Jatukhum fans. Jatukham Fever is finally coming to its end after countless competitors have flooded the market with low quality unattractive amulets.

Just yesterday, our reporters went to 3 popular Buddhist amulet locations to investigate for themselves whether there had been a demise in interest for the Jatukham amulet. It was found that there was nothing of the enthusiasm and fervor for the Jatukham amulet as the one which took the country by storm earlier in the year. There were far less Jatukham stalls and customers these days. Much of the demise in popularity is due to the market having been stalked by mostly fake amulets. Amulets which were once asking a price of several hundreds can not even be sold for tens of baht now. One shop we saw had placed up a sign stating ‘Business Closed’ and were selling off their amulets for just 5-20 baht. Still, no passer-bys were interested!

One amulet dealer admitted that just too many Jatukham amulets and different brand names had been produced. He went on to say that some vendors had ordered hundreds of thousands of baht’s worth of amulets during the Jatukham fever, but now – they couldn’t knock them off anymore. He blamed the demise on too many brands, unattractive brands and the rampant counterfeit production of popular ones. He said that customers had felt cheated by producers who had promised ‘lovely’ amulets but after receiving theirs, complained that they were just not up to standard.

It certainly looks like the billion baht Jatukham amulet industry will soon be coming to the end of its short life.

Spicy Hot: Thaksin’s New Girlfriend!?

(Not bad, it looks like Mr Thaksin seems to have a good taste in woman)

Well, it’s certainly out the bag and Thaksin seems to be proud of it! According to a new biography of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, he and super-spicy singer ‘Lydia’ are the best of buddies (and a little bit more?)

In the new book ‘Thaksin,Where Are You? written by an army lieutenant girl who risked losing her job to interview Thaksin for the book – writes that Thaksin and Lydia are so close that he calls her ‘my loving daughter’.

Now, Thaksin’s lawyer Mr Noppadol, has verified to the Thai Rath newspaper (issued today) that Lydia and Thaksin are just ‘very close’, so are the two families and that there was no hanky-panky involved. Anyway, “She’s still not 20 years of age” Noppadon retorted. He went on to say that it was Thaksin’s son who set the happy friendship up.

(Thaksin’s wife, a bit of a stunner – 30 years ago like)

The couple of photos that have been circulating on the Internet of Thaksin and Lydia cuddling-up together, certainly make the cheery couple look rather more than just nice friends. We are all still waiting for Thaksin’s wife Pojamon to voice her opinion on the matter. In the meantime however, I hasten to add that Lydia looks slightly more appetizing than his aging wife.
But that’s only my opinion. I have posted a photo of both Lydia (and no she is not a ladyboy) and Thaksin’s common-in-law wife for you to compare.

I, on behalf of thai-blogs, wish Mr Thaksin and Miss Lydia the very best of luck.

G-strings & The Buddha Image

(Here below is a brief translation of a headline story in today’s Thai Rath newspaper)

On May 28, the Culture Ministry received complaints about an American company which had been advertising products by the name ‘Philosophy’ on the Internet using the Buddha as their logo.

After a bit of investigation, the ministry agreed it was sacrilege to screen an image of the Buddha like this on to inappropriate clothing. The clothing included women’s knickers (similar to g-strings), men’s underpants, dog warmers and women’s spaghetti-style tops – all of which is sold under the guise of a Buddhist Gift Shop.

Many Buddhists, on coming across the website, have been very angry. They have asked the Culture Ministry to take immediate action. They are also confused to why such accounts of sacrilege like this happen so often. In Thailand recently, we have had strip-tease shows at temples and Coyote dancing at funerals etc.. – seems like we have no shame, just like foreigners. It is much wanted that foreigners realize that Buddhism is our national religion and that it is sacrilege to use images of the Buddha is such a way.

There really ought to be a clear law which states that such offenders be punished. We are tired of just hearing the same usual excuse of “Oh, I’m sorry” time and time again.

Our reporters decided to investigate the site for themselves and found that all the items on sale had images of the Buddha. Besides those things as mentioned above, we also found t-shirts, caps, vests, boxer shorts, belts, mugs and bags etc…

Mr Preecha of the Dept of Religion said that the matter will be forwarded to the Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Thai Embassy in America etc etc….

More ‘Jatukham’ Miracles!

The Thai newspapers have been full lately of supposed Jatukham amulet miracles. Here below is a brief translation of today’s sensational headline story. Courtesy of the Thai Rath newspaper

On the second day of the latest Jatukham ceremony at a temple in Chumphon province the place was heaving with Jatukham followers. Devotees included famous monks and movie stars. Among all these folk were well-known actress ‘Yart Yart-thip’ the ex-girlfriend of Mr Thaksin’s son, Phanthongthae. Her mother also came.

At 2:19pm, just when Miss Yart-thip was taking part (above pic right), an unbelievable thing happened. The sky which had been bright all day suddenly turned dark and through the clouds a holy image of Rahu appeared! Everyone was amazed and most people present believed the miracle was the work of Jatukham.
At the same time, the crowds were so excited by the Jatukham ceremony that there was a huge frenzy to purchase a Jatukham amulet priced 200 – 39,000 baht.
Miss Yart-thip said that she had never before come to Chumphorn province but came this time because of her belief in the super powers of Jatukham.

Besides just the ‘Jatukham Cloud/Yart-thip’ miracle another one also happened the day before. On the first day of the ceremony, the organizers invited lots of important government officials and movie stars including Miss Jui – Woratya (above pic top left). Then, just when Jui was playing with the holy water a Grade 12 student took a photograph with his digital camera. After, when the student inspected the photo he was flabbergasted to see a sign of Jatukham appearing on her head, another miracle! Miss Jui utterly shocked, said that she had only read of such miracles before in the local newspapers and never believed that such a holy thing would happen to her.
The promoters, on seeing the photograph, immediately asked for a copy.

(From yesterday’s Thai Rath, another Jatukham cloud miracle!)

On the same day, our reporters went to Kanchanaburi province to meet up with Mr Decha – a very big politician for many decades. Their intent was to ask him about a supposed Jatukham miracle which happened at the funeral of a 72 year-old man he had been present at. The story goes that when a relative of the deceased took a photo of the dead body a sign of Jatukham amazingly appeared on the body’s jacket. Mr Decha told the reporters that the story was absolutely true and called for the photo-taking relative to bring a copy. He also said that Jatukham was really holy and everyone who had one was to ‘think good and do good’.

Mr Chin, the younger brother of the deceased, told our reporters that his elder brother, a devout Buddhist, had always because of his deep faith, blessed his Jatukham amulet. In his will too, he had divided up all his amulets to family and friends.

(Notes: In March of this year, the Thai Rath earned 4,518,000 baht from Jatukham advertisements. Source: Nielsen Media Research)