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Going To The Polls


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Going To The Polls

By PRADIT PHULSARIKIJ 
NATION GRAPHICS

 

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Since becoming a constitutional monarchy in 1932, Thailand has seen 27 general elections. The first one took place in November 1933. The latest was held in February 2014, although it was later declared unconstitutional by the court.

 

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Source: http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/politics/30362512

 

The Nation: 2019-01-19

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Let us not forget the 19 coups d'etat that they have also had, 12 of them successful, so about half of the elected Governments have been overthrown. History has shown that the army have never been any good at running the place, they keep handing back power, saying they won't get involved again. This time looks a little different, as while the Junta are saying they are ready to give power back to the people, in reality it seems that they have no real intention of doing so. If they do cling on, history would suggest that it will not help Thailand one jot. Power hungry maniacs don't let little things like that worry them though, do they?

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'Going to the polls' - ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Firstly, we still don't know for sure when the rights-deprived Thais will be allowed to 'vote'.

Secondly (and most importantly), we DO know for sure that the election will NOT be free and fair.

In other words - it will be rigged - and the 'result' (continuance of the military's power grouping) is already in essence decided.

 

 

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2 hours ago, darksidedog said:

Let us not forget the 19 coups d'etat that they have also had, 12 of them successful, so about half of the elected Governments have been overthrown. History has shown that the army have never been any good at running the place, they keep handing back power, saying they won't get involved again. This time looks a little different, as while the Junta are saying they are ready to give power back to the people, in reality it seems that they have no real intention of doing so. If they do cling on, history would suggest that it will not help Thailand one jot. Power hungry maniacs don't let little things like that worry them though, do they?

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

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3 hours ago, darksidedog said:

Let us not forget the 19 coups d'etat that they have also had, 12 of them successful, so about half of the elected Governments have been overthrown. History has shown that the army have never been any good at running the place, they keep handing back power, saying they won't get involved again. This time looks a little different, as while the Junta are saying they are ready to give power back to the people, in reality it seems that they have no real intention of doing so. If they do cling on, history would suggest that it will not help Thailand one jot. Power hungry maniacs don't let little things like that worry them though, do they?

What is worse. is that Chanocha says he is doing it all for the glory of someone else.

 

What's wrong with this picture?

 

 

 

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15 minutes ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

Or even better, if he had not refused to come in and subdue the seditious rioters because they were friends of hi and had an 'arrangement'. Put the man against a wall and administer the Thai punishment for treason. That'll make sure there are no further coups, no mstter who the coup-makers pretend to be honouring with their treason and sedition.

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27 minutes ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

Well, the protests were rather fizzling out, so who knows? After all, in terms of protest action, the "reform before elections" (unspecified reforms) guru had been reduced to squatting in a tent in Lumping Park sending tweets accusing the Prime Minister of being a whore! 

 

What is perhaps is a more pertinent question is what would have happened had General Prayuth Chan-o-cha actually done his job as head of the armed forces, and at least ensured that the entirely constitutional and correctly mandated general election which the legal, elected,  government had called, had been allowed to go ahead, rather than being blocked (by use and threat of force) by a minority political faction who did so because they would have lost. Now there's a question to ponder... 

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2 minutes ago, JAG said:

Well, the protests were rather fizzing out, so who knows? 

 

What is perhaps is a more pertinent question is what would have happened had General Prayuth Chan-o-cha actually done his job as head of the armed forces, and at least ensured that the entirely constitutional and correctly mandated general election which the legal, elected,  government had called, had been allowed to go ahead, rather than being blocked (by use and threat of force) by a minority political faction who did so because they would have lost. Now there's a question to ponder... 

Brilliant post, JAG. Every sentence bursting with truth!

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As I am a foreigner with no horse in the upcoming race my opinion means zero. One thing I am pleased about is that presently innocent lives are not being lost due to political rivalry. If you look at some of the powerhouse nations in the world now you see the effects of political maneuvering. The chaos of brexit, the us gov in a shutdown makes me wonder what is the solution? And this is from supposedly well educated countries. IMO if voting in the reds or yellows results in riots in the streets and the death of innocents then what's the point of that? Oh, they're free now to kill each other in the street, but at least they're free doesn't fly as an argument with me. Sometimes, expat solutions based on homeland experiences and education just don't fit. Failed attempts at colonization in different locales have sometimes proven this out. Despite the arrogance of some, cut and paste solutions sometimes are not the only answer. Whatever way this all goes in couple of months (maybe), my main wish is that the Thai people don't get brutalized over politics and political systems. As noted above, even the political systems that are supposedly the best don't always serve the greater good.  

   

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2 hours ago, from the home of CC said:

Whatever way this all goes in couple of months (maybe), my main wish is that the Thai people don't get brutalized over politics and political systems. As noted above, even the political systems that are supposedly the best don't always serve the greater good.  

At the moment they have a junta, drawn from a collection of people with something of a reputation for brutality, and which is effectively maintaining itself in position by threat of such brutality. There are elements lining up behind the junta, perhaps (probably) with a view to succeeding them, with equal if not greater reputations for brutality.

 

I'd say that whilst the Thai people are not brutalised at present, the country's political system is, and as the only realistic prospect of any change is through popular action, such action will almost certainly be met with brutality. 

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23 hours ago, darksidedog said:

...as while the Junta are saying they are ready to give power back to the people, in reality it seems that they have no real intention of doing so.

 

You don't take something at gunpoint with the intention of giving it back.

 

 

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20 hours ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

I don't think for one minute that Prayuth stopped the unrest, he was only the driver in the first tank. 

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8 minutes ago, Hayduke said:

You don't take something at gunpoint with the intention of giving it back.

Exactly, which is why they have been constantly "tweaking" the constitution in their favour regardless of who is in power!

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20 hours ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

correct  .....   I myself, as are many others quite content with Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha being in charge. As said all along, it's better to have someone in charge with control to move Thailand forward than have roads blocked, constant protests, fighting and lawlessness.

Thailand is going ahead with numerous highway extension projects, BTS extensions, SRT extensions and various agricultural project continually being implemented.

Thankfully Khun Prayuth took control off a worsening situation.

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20 hours ago, from the home of CC said:

If you look at some of the powerhouse nations in the world now you see the effects of political maneuvering. The chaos of brexit, the us gov in a shutdown makes me wonder what is the solution? And this is from supposedly well educated countries. IMO if voting in the reds or yellows results in riots in the streets and the death of innocents then what's the point of that? Oh, they're free now to kill each other in the street, but at least they're free doesn't fly as an argument with me.

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

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3 minutes ago, steven100 said:

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

Steven ole lad, i think you need new meds, the stuff your using now is getting you totally confused.🙄

You prefer a person who stole his job by force, there is surely something wrong with your thinking.

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13 minutes ago, steven100 said:

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

 

Rather than pro Prayut, I'm more anti violence than anything.  IMO I do not see the point of going back to a political situation that results in innocent people losing their lives and their ability to make a living. In trying to provide for their families, the struggles of the average Thai person are immense in the best of times, let alone when chaos fills the streets. When RPG, sniper fire and burning buildings restrict movement, to me, that's the real loss of freedom. Having the military controlling the country is not the best solution. But if it keeps innocent blood from running in the streets and gives Thais the freedom to put food on the table, it's worth it even if it doesn't fit western idealized standards of democracy.

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21 hours ago, from the home of CC said:

Whatever way this all goes in couple of months (maybe), my main wish is that the Thai people don't get brutalized over politics and political systems. As noted above, even the political systems that are supposedly the best don't always serve the greater good.  

   

But they already are being brutalized by the political systems and parties... The scale of wasted human potential as a direct result of governmental mismanagement is absolutely staggering--truly colossal--here.  Imagine the limits --in terms of  health, prosperity, and opportunities for self-improvement--this mismanagement places on just one (let's say non-hi-so) Thai you know.  Now multiply that by tens of millions (and then tens of years) and  ask yourself the hard question: how many individual protestor lives might that be worth for the greater long-term good?  I don't have an answer, but difficult questions like this need to be in the conversation.

 

A lot of people will be uncomfortable with this line of thinking, but quality of life needs to be considered alongside quantity... cultural relativism be damned.  Those in power here won't give it up without blood, simple as that, and purely emotional/sentimental thinking such as this, while understandable and in some senses laudable, will continue to be good intentions paving the road to hell for the foreseeable.

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4 minutes ago, ramr said:

But they already are being brutalized by the political systems and parties... The scale of wasted human potential as a direct result of governmental mismanagement is absolutely staggering--truly colossal--here.  Imagine the limits --in terms of  health, prosperity, and opportunities for self-improvement--this mismanagement places on just one (let's say non-hi-so) Thai you know.  Now multiply that by tens of millions (and then tens of years) and  ask yourself the hard question: how many individual protestor lives might that be worth for the greater long-term good?  I don't have an answer, but difficult questions like this need to be in the conversation.

 

A lot of people will be uncomfortable with this line of thinking, but quality of life needs to be considered alongside quantity... cultural relativism be damned.  Those in power here won't give it up without blood, simple as that, and purely emotional/sentimental thinking such as this, while understandable and in some senses laudable, will continue to be good intentions paving the road to hell for the foreseeable.

I believe the waste of Thai potential stems primarily from the lack of a quality education rather than the effect of any 'political system or lack of'. The question of 'how may protester lives need to be sacrificed' to me is typical of those not doing the 'sacrificing' for it's very easy to 'sacrifice' somebody else for the 'greater good'. And if I was giving up my life for 'all' I think I would want some assurance it was really going to make a difference. Can that be said here with the Thai track record on politics? Sorry, the only real change I see in Thailand's future will only come about when minds are opened with education with the resultant ability to critically think. 

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22 hours ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

Stopping unrest and taking over the country are two different things.

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22 hours ago, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

But he didn't stop the unrest for a long time. He let Suthep march around the streets, closing down this road and that in his 'Shutdown Bangkok' campaign, surrounding and invading government property. Suthep even ordered civil servants to report to him, not Yingluck. An act of treason.

And what has Prayuth done since seizing power? He's appointed some of the very men who were causing the unrest to his government!

 

 

 

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35 minutes ago, ChipButty said:

Going to the Dogs, more like it

Alot of TV farangs have been saying that for the past 4 years,  funny how exports continue to rise, job growth is at a high, more projects are up and running now than has been in the past 10 years.

Sorry,  it's far from going to the dogs. IMO

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44 minutes ago, from the home of CC said:

I believe the waste of Thai potential stems primarily from the lack of a quality education rather than the effect of any 'political system or lack of'.

I agree, and yet education (by which we both seem to mean an education that includes critical thinking) as
The Answer© is so obvious and easy as to be a truism.  So let's dig deeper:  from whence flows the education for the majority of people here?  Thai schools, which, whether government or private in name, are subject to government management and direction at most levels.  I do btw consider the (past, present, and likely future) Thai government's single greatest sin of mismanagement and incompetence with regards to its people to be the educational system.  You've--perhaps unwittingly--only strengthened my assertion here by mentioning it as the solution to the wasted potential problem.

And speaking of which, wasted potential on the scale I've outlined causes untold human suffering and misery.  It ruins both individual lives and sends ripple effects down multiple generations.  It's actually deadly serious business.  Something to consider.

 

1 hour ago, from the home of CC said:

The question of 'how may protester lives need to be sacrificed' to me is typical of those not doing the 'sacrificing' for it's very easy to 'sacrifice' somebody else for the 'greater good'. 

1.  That wasn't the question.  

2.  Whether it's "typical" to you or not, and true or not, you are assuming quite a bit about me.  Especially after one post.  But I can understand your suspicion, even though in my heart I am a huge softie. 

3.  It's not my choice to make, and I would never claim so.  And it's a horrible and difficult question to need to ask, I agree, but no less relevant to the issue of decreasing human suffering.  And I would never claim it's the ONLY question people should ask.  And I do believe it's the Thai people that need to decide which action to take to sort out their own country.  However....

4.  "No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it."  -- Albert Einstein.  We all need outside and unexpected perspectives in the mix to be able to think constructively about the real, difficult, complex problems.  I was just trying to add another dimension to the often reflexive and reactionary "violence = 100% bad, always" narrative.  

 

1 hour ago, from the home of CC said:

And if I was giving up my life for 'all' I think I would want some assurance it was really going to make a difference. Can that be said here with the Thai track record on politics? 

I think this is your best point, and I get it completely, although it's unrealistic to expect assurances--especially of this sort--in life.  Also, history plays the loooooong game, so it's a bit of hubris for one expecting to be anything more than a drop of water wearing down a rock.  But there is power in numbers.  And intelligent planning.

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On 1/19/2019 at 2:49 PM, from the home of CC said:

As I am a foreigner with no horse in the upcoming race my opinion means zero. One thing I am pleased about is that presently innocent lives are not being lost due to political rivalry.

A life wasting away in jail for simply speaking up against the coup is an innocent life lost. And there are plenty of them.

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On 1/19/2019 at 2:17 PM, khunPer said:

One can wonder what might have happened, if general Prayuth Chan-o-cha didn't stop the unrest in 2014...🤔

 

3 hours ago, steven100 said:

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

Nothing to wonder about. Thailand would have been involved in a dirty civil war as there was really bad feelings, riots, killings with people (red shirts) clapping in glee as announcements were made of killings. There was no go zones and if you were going outside you made sure you were not wearing either a red shirt or yellow shirt as you would probably be confronted, i know I was when I made the mistake of going out wearing a red shirt and I am a farang not involved. The army HAD to step in and now it's time to step down. I know I am going to get flamed by the anti Junta trolls claiming the red shirts were a peacefull bunch and all the press saying otherwise is all bullshit.

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26 minutes ago, Gudge said:

The army HAD to step in and now it's time to step down.

Not necessarily so cut and dried as to warrant an absolute "HAD" in all caps.  Google "Reichstag fire".

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31 minutes ago, baboon said:

A life wasting away in jail for simply speaking up against the coup is an innocent life lost. And there are plenty of them.

Before making such a big sacrafice that goes with being a martyr and taking one for the team I would want to be damn sure there is a team 

 

Team thailand 60 million are completely not interested and polls are up yet the Prayut bashers are not even capable of making the connection... 

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4 hours ago, steven100 said:

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

You'd be very welcome to him, but what would you feed him? He'd make a lousy pet. I suppose you could prop the door open with him, but he'd look pretty untidy.

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, steven100 said:

Well said CC .....    Just further evidence to show that ' democracy ' is nothing more than a word and a smokescreen.  Look at the UK .... what a mess !  Look at Australia ....  the Aussie's change PM every 6 months ..what a mess !   just a couple of examples.

Give me Thailand and Khun Prayuth Chan O Cha anyday :wai:

 

And such a comment, comparing the political situation of Thailand and Australia means anything else you say should be treated with the contempt it deserves. 

You deserve Prayuth, the treasonist, as your posterboy. When he is lined up with his back to the wall ready to face his justified punishment, I hope you are willing to stand by him on this momentus occasion also.

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