Friday, December 21, 2012

A Christmas Poem

Printing a short poem or message honoring the King on his birthday, December 5th, is fairly routine and traditional for newspapers in Thailand.  However, this year there was some controversy concerning a poem printed by one very respected newspaper, Matichon.
It was a short four-line poem printed without attribution but all hell broke loose in online social networks, with angry royalist nutjobs posting comments bashing or condemning the newspaper.  Most of those who were critical of the poem felt the content was ambiguous and none of it could be seen as praising or honoring the King.
One of the critics who railed against the poem and the newspaper in particular included Suravich Virawan, executive editor of the ASTV cable channel and someone with absolutely no clue on the values of poetry.  He questioned why the poem was written in an ambiguous fashion which could be interpreted in different and negative ways.
He also noted that similar poems which were printed by the newspaper in the past for the occasion were quite straightforward, meaningful and easy to understand.
Reinforcing December 7th as a day of infamy, Sondhi Limthongkul appeared on ASTV grumbling about the poem.  The Manager Group proprietor and year-round fruitcake said the poem in question looked all right if the reader simply glanced through it.
But, he said, if one carefully read through it to find out the true meaning of the poem, the ambiguous nature of the writing could be misinterpreted, or might suggest the unnamed writer might have wanted to criticize the King.
The former leader of the yellow-shirt People's Alliance for Democracy and current poster boy for abortion, then suggested the newspaper might have already been bought by the "Man in Dubai".
Also, issuing critical points of view were some of the other dregs of Thai society; pop singers. They published their responses to the poem in the most respected and intellectually accepted media in Thailand;  Facebook.
Pop singer Billy Ogan posted his own poem condemning both the poem and Matichon, likening them to a dog.
Not to be outdone in idiocy, pop singer Kalyakorn Naksompop wrote on her Facebook page that there was no need to write in a cryptic or ambiguous fashion if the intention was to praise someone or wish him well. She added the newspaper would have been better off not writing anything at all if it did not want to honor the King.
The criticisms prompted the Matichon editorial department to issue a statement through its website in defense of the controversial poem. It said there was no ulterior motive on the part of the newspaper or the writer of the poem to offend the King.
Now I don’t want to get too involved in this poetry controversy. It is, after all, their king and their poetry.
Besides, I’m too involved nowadays with the holiday season here. Ironically, it is also the celebration of the birthday of a king – the King of kings to be exact.  That’s why we have Santa Claus, decorated trees, singing, etc…
Like during the King of Thailand’s birthday, we also have poetry for Christmas and nothing brings out the spirit of the holidays when the family all gathers around and I read a Christmas poem to them.
So, in honor of the festive holiday season, I’d like to share a traditional Christmas poem which brings cheer to my family and I hope it brings cheer to you as well.  It’s not cryptic or ambiguous but I’m fairly certain that Sondhi is not going to like it. But who cares?  He knows as much about poetry as he does about democracy. 

Twas a Sondhi Night Before Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the land
Nothing was stirring, not even the third hand.
The generals were sleeping, retired ones too.
Those arrogant bastards were dreaming of coup.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of Christmas danced in their heads.
But I waited until I heard nary a peep,
Then I settled in bed for a much deserved sleep.

When out in the street there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The lights on the street with their bright yellow glow
Gave the luster of mid-day to objects below.
“I just don’t believe it,” I said to myself,
“There’s some kind of deranged, goofy looking elf. “

Weaving between cars and against traffic flow,
In a crude little wagon pulled by four buffalo.
More yellow than lemons and more stupid they claim,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

"Now Phipbob! Now Chamlong! Now  Boonlert and Tul!
It’s all for the King. Try much harder and pull!
To the front of the porch! To the front of the wall!
Now plod away! Plod away! Plod away all!"

And then after a short and relative calm,
The front door exploded from a ping pong ball bomb.
You wouldn’t have guessed who next entered the room,
Sondhi the Terrorist of Suvarnabhumi.

From his head to his feet, he was dressed in all yellow.
He looked very scary, a despicable fellow.
Afraid for my children and even my spouse,
I yelled “this is my home, not the Government House!”

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
Wrecking our home, that fat facist jerk.
He smashed into our tree and the ornaments broke,
Is this what he learned from the Santi Asoke?

His eyes were glazed over! His breath smelled of booze!
He acted quite crazy, like his mind blew a fuse!
He called me a name and stuck out his tongue,
He was a very rude man, that fat piece of dung.

He started to chuckle as he broke wind with glee,
Taking all the presents  and even the tree.
Quickly making an exit where once was our door,
He was fully loaded and he could carry no more!

He sprang to his wagon, to his team gave a hoot,
And away they all went pulling that fascist galoot.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
"I love the King so this makes it all right!"

The children were shaking and filled with great fright.
They had just witnessed a horrible sight.
Their presents were gone. They didn’t know why.
They thought they’d miss Christmas and started to cry.

But the crying all ceased when reassured by their mother,
“He didn’t take everything, we still have each other.”
It was then and there when we discovered the reason
and the meaning of Christmas and the holiday season.

Christmas is more than a tree or a toy.
It’s about love, happiness, giving and joy.
These are all things Sondhi can’t carry away.
Keep them close to your heart and you’ll have Christmas Day.

It’s peace on Earth, good will towards men.
Practice this and you’ll always win,
The wrong will fail, there’s no need to dread.
Santa doesn’t wear yellow, Santa wears red.

And Santa Says to Free Somyot!
Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Abhisit’s Revealing Fingerprints

Last Thursday former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and his evil toady former Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban reported to the Department of Special Investigation to acknowledge criminal charges, including murder, in connection with the massacre of unarmed pro-democracy protesters in Bangkok two years ago. Part of the procedure was to fingerprint the two charged suspects.

However, someone took a photograph of Abhisit being fingerprinted which was later posted on the internet and dubbed “a historic picture.”

This incident prompted the Democrat Party to demand that legal action be taken against a DSI official for taking and leaking the photograph.

Democrat spokesman and renowned loony conspiracy theorist Chavanond Intarakomalyasut insisted that it was clear the picture had been taken from where Pol Lt-Colonel Theeraphol Pinmuangngarm was sitting while Abhisit was being officially charged.  Chavanond also said Theeraphol had denied taking the photograph and posting it on the internet, though he was convinced that the photograph had been e-mailed to former premier Thaksin Shinawatra in exchange for a reward. 

Fingerprints, of course, offer an infallible means of personal identification. This technique has been around for years.

Making sure they have the right individual charged with the appropriate crime is why the DSI takes fingerprints in the first place.  Abhisit’s fingerprints were also allegedly leaked to the internet and they are very revealing in that they clearly show that he should be charged with murder, attempted murder, bodily assault and other crimes which incurred during the 2010 pro-democracy protest massacre in Bangkok.

When Abhisit called the military in to crush the pro-democracy movement which would have led to his removal from office, he knew there would be death and violence. The Thai military have a long and well documented history of killing unarmed pro-democracy protesters. Both Abhisit and Suthep should be held to account for these crimes.  

Monday, December 10, 2012

Children of the Korn

The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, wasn’t the only person to get nauseous recently over an impending event in the UK involving children.  I was too.

Andrew Spooner, aka Asia Provocateur, posted on his site about former Thailand Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and his economic henchman, former Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij, being invited to a reception for the Thai Children’s Trust 30th Anniversary Celebration. Korn’s team was especially touting the request to attend.
Korn  Chatikavanij

I find these invitations extremely inappropriate at best, particularly sickening at worst. And those who know me know that passing judgment is like passing a kidney stone. It’s going to hurt and someone is going to walk funny.

Korn is a well known supporter for the terrorist organization known as the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD).   Lest we forget his op-ed article on September 9, 2008 in the Bangkok Post where he statesLet’s be clear – I am a PAD sympathizer.

Since Korn is a PAD sympathizer then he must condone their use of children as human shields during that group’s violent takeover of the Bangkok airports as was reported by NineMSN on November 30, 2008. “The idea is that the military or police won’t use as much force because children were still there.”

Of course, the democratically elected government of Somchai Wongsawat did not use force against the PAD to free the airports.  But there was no reward for refraining from violence as Somchai was removed from office, banned for 5 years, and his political party (People’s Power Party) dissolved.  Afterwards, the Thai Democrat Party, including Korn, who openly supported the PAD, took over the government with the help of the military.

This was in 2008. But just when I thought that nothing could be as disgusting as supporting the use of children as human shields for a terrorist group, the Thai Democrat Party unbelievably manages to find a way to lower the bar even further.

In 2010, the Thai Democrats, in their attempt to crush a legitimate pro-democracy movement and maintain power, gave the orders that actually shot and killed children.
A Young Victim of the Thai Democrat Party's Quest for Power

There’s nothing like showing the population that you are willing to do anything and commit any atrocity in order to intimidate and control them.  

An invitation to an event supporting the Thai Children’s Trust by a British MP doesn’t absolve Korn nor Abhisit from their crimes against Thai children.  It does not legitimatize their callous actions. It only shows that some British MPs need to be better informed about Thai history and Thai Democrat Party blood lust.


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Abhisit and Suthep Charged, Bring on the ICC

After brutally massacring peaceful civilians protesting for elections in Bangkok during April and May of 2010, the military installed government led by Abhisit Vejjajiva arrested thousands in order to further crush the pro-democracy movement.  Thailand’s prisons are currently packed with hundreds of these political prisoners. These men and women include political activists, labor leaders, bloggers, and ordinary citizens who have been arrested on charges of lese majeste (Article 112 of the Criminal Code) or violations to the 2007 Computer Crimes Act.

Yet nobody has been arrested for the murders of the innocent protesters in Bangkok during 2010! 

Let me draw you a picture…

In Thailand, the scales of justice are as unbalanced as some of the judges there. 

Let me draw you another picture…

Does this Judge Look Mentally Balanced?
For too long now, Thai authorities have not genuinely pursued those most responsible for the murders of innocent civilians.  

However, according to a rare bit of journalism in the Bangkok Post, the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) has charged Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva and Democrat MP Suthep Thaugsuban for authorizing the killing of anti-government protesters during the 2010 unrest in Bangkok.

Suthep Thaugsuban and Abhisit Vejjajiva
They're not laughing now

And in an interview with The Daily TelegraphPitch Pongsawat, Professor of Political Science at Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University, said, This is just the beginning of a long process and there’s no guarantee that the courts will rule against Mr. Abhisit.” 

Of course there’s NO guarantee that the courts will rule against Abhisit. Part of the royalist elite strategy for self-preservation is to utilize the Thai judicial system for political gain. This includes the judicial protection of their friends and criminalization of their enemies in the pro-democracy movement. 

Thailand’s judges have increasingly made flagrantly political decisions, from dissolving political parties to stopping the charter amendment process, making the justice system there completely defective.

This is where the International Criminal Court (ICC) intervention can help.

The ICC is a mechanism that will complement the criminal justice system of any country whose justice system is flawed and cannot function effectively which describes the justice system in Thailand perfectly.  ICC involvement doesn’t mean that Thailand hands over jurisdiction to the ICC as some have claimed.    

And one of the felonies the ICC will help to adjudicate in a country with a faulty justice system is a crime against humanity.

And make no mistake about it. The killing and wounding of civilian demonstrators in 2010 was systematically planned by Abhisit and Suthep.  A crime against humanity, by definition, is any action as part of a wider, systematic attack with the politically motivated aim to harm the citizens or intimidate or destroy particular groups of people.  So if the 2010 massacre doesn’t qualify as a crime against humanity by Abhisit and Suthep, then I don’t know what does.  

Now the elitists in Thailand are saying that the ICC is not needed to improve the justice process and that what they have is “good enough.”   This is a good example of the maxim, "better is the enemy of good enough."  It is even a better example of the maxim “better is the enemy of sucks big time.”   

I say, bring on the ICC. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Snakes and Ladders

The Thai elite can’t win elections so they thought they’d try playing another game:  Snakes and Ladders.

The Thai elite couldn’t win that game either.

For those who don’t know about the traditional board game of Snakes and Ladders, it is played between two or more players on a game board having numbered, gridded squares. A number of "ladders" and "snakes" are pictured on the board, each connecting two specific board squares. The object of the game is to navigate one's game piece, according to die rolls, from the start (bottom square) to the finish (top square).  Along the way, players will find ladders to help them advance (representing good acts) and snakes which will cause them to move backwards (representing slides toward evil).

So ladders are good and snakes are bad in this game.

On November 14th, government officials prepare ladders to act as a potential get away exit at a wall near Parliament in case the neo-fascist mob known as Pitak Siam are able to surround the compound.  

Preparedness is a good thing so Phue Thai receives ladders.

Then on November 23rd, a large number of snakes were released near the encampment of one of Pitak Siam’s evil minion groups known as the Dharma Army. 

Overthrowing a democratically elected government is a bad thing so the traditional Thai elite receive snakes.

Phue Thai wins again and fascism craps out.

Perhaps the Thai elite might have better luck in the political chess game known as the censure debate which will be held in a few days. This is very doubtful as all games have morals; which is why the fascists in Thailand will never truly win anything. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Attack of the Abominable Snowmen

It would appear that General Boonlert Kaewprasit, leader of the Pitak Siam group, is in a hasty retreat. Only a few weeks ago he was infamously calling for a coup to topple the democratically elected government and to place democratic rule in the "deep-freeze" for five years. Thailand would be governed by an appointed government. It's the complete opposite of the Arab Spring protests where people demanded democracy from dictatorships. Consider it the "Thai Winter" where people demand dictatorship from democracy.

"If a coup did take place, an interim government would be set up. If this was not acceptable to other countries, we could close the country. I don't know for how many years, but the closure should remain until all the bad politicians have been driven away. I have never seen a good politician. Soldiers are needed to take care of the country." - Gen Boonlert, October 31, 2012

Then on November 16 after a severe mocking by pro-democratic groups and other right minded people, the general stepped back a bit.

"We will have a period of caretakers in control. It's like basketball. If there is an accident, can't we have a short timeout of 2-3 minutes? If it's on the time scale of politics, it will maybe be 1 year 2 years 3 years or 5 years, then we can have elections again. If it's just one year [without elections] such as in 2549, it will be ruined because as soon as 'he' leaves he'll be back." - Gen Boonlert, November 16, 2012

Two days later, the general was totally denying everything.

"I've never called for the country to be closed or frozen for a period. I only want to stop corrupt politicians." - Gen Boonlert, November 18, 2012

But the general has gathered all his fascist friends to help him rally this weekend for a military coup.  Of course, front and center is the yellow-shirt People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD).  Right behind them is the multi-colored-shirt gang led by Tul Sitthisomwong. The list goes on and on and is quite impressive: Peace-Loving Thais group led by Kanchanee Walayasevi, PAD’s Chamlong Srimuang’s Dhamma Army, etc...

One of the latest groups that say they’ll be attending is the New Politics Party led by former PAD co-leader Somsak Kosaisuk.  They’re such a neo-fascist group that their logo is a “blinged up” swastika.

Personally, I think these people really do want to “freeze” Thailand.  If they didn’t then why does Somsak resemble the snowman narrator from the seasonal Christmas television classic “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer?”

Then there’s Prasong Soonsiri, who probably was alive during the last climatic ice age. That pipe looks very familiar…

Monday, November 19, 2012

Thai Media Bias Shows Its Ugly Face

And it is the face of Channel 7’s reporter, Somjit Nawakruasunthorn.
Somjit Nawakruasunthorn
Nearly every day, the Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, Chalerm Yubamrung, holds a small, informal press conference. Usually these question and answer sessions are humdrum and uneventful but the one held on Nov 15, 2012 was quite entertaining and illustrates the typical media bias there is against the current government there… specifically, the bias shown by Channel 7’s reporter, Somjit Nawakruasunthorn.

The topic of the questioning was the security preparations for handling the next Pitak Siam rally on Nov 24-25 at the Royal Plaza. 
Mr Chalerm was simply trying to inform Somjit that a political party was behind the rally was the main threat. 

Which party, she asked?

"The one that loses elections," he answered, clearly referring to the opposition  Democrats who haven’t won a national election in over 20 years. Clearly Somjit is not the sharpest tool in the tool shed.

When she persisted in her questions, challenging him to provide evidence, he pointed out to her that she was a Democrat supporter, causing her to misunderstand the situation and the government's progress in dealing with it.

The reporter said she could sue him for the remark. Mr Chalerm said he had done nothing wrong.

‘‘I’m just saying that you sympathize with that party. There is nothing wrong with that,’’ Mr Chalerm said. ‘‘Sue me if you want,’’ he added.

Somjit retorted: ‘‘If your calling me sympathetic to that party is not defamatory, would calling your servitude to Thaksin Shinawatra amount to defamation?’’

Mr Chalerm said: ‘‘That’s definitely defamation.’’

The reporter then challenged Mr Chalerm to file a police complaint against her.

Here’s the video of the event:

Now I don’t think we need to bring this to any Thai court.  Why waste their time?  Besides, everyone knows Thai courts are both incompetent and corrupt.  I will be more than happy to be the judge here… and know that I don’t just pass judgment.  I lay on the horn and flip it the bird.

Is Somjit sympathetic to the Democrat Party?  Let’s look at the evidence.

Somjit has admitted that she participated in the PAD’s terrorist takeover of Suvarnabhumi International Airport in 2008. This terrorist action was supported by the Democrats which helped bus in participants.

One Democrat Party leader who openly supported the PAD is Korn Chatikavanij. In 2008, Korn said the following in the Bangkok Post after the siege of the NBT station by the PAD:

Let’s be clear I am a PAD sympathizer. I attended the very first Thammasat “seminar” organized by Sondhi Limthongkul back in 2005. I remembered thinking at the time that something special was happening.

Of course, one can read more about the Democrat Party Bankster, Korn, from a syrupy book written by an obvious ass kissing author, none other than Somjit herself.
Somjit's Book About Korn 
Somjit has also written two other books practically worshipping former PM Abhisit Vejjajiva, the most recent one which Abhisit helped promote with personal appearances at book signings. It must have been quite a feat writing these books while her tongue was half-way down the backside of Abhisit’s trousers.
Somjit's Two Books About Abhisit 
So I think it is fairly obvious that Somjit is a Democrat Party sympathizer which automatically makes her uninformed and ignorant in my judgment.

Is Somjit biased in her reporting? Again, let’s be fair and look at some evidence.

In her first month after being taking office, democratically elected Prime Minster Yingluck Shinawatra refused to answer questions at a press conference from Somjit. The first question the PM refused to answer was: "Do you ever think of doing something for the country or the people sometimes or not?" That question was preceded by this one: "Do you think the cabinet is uglier than the PM?"

There is a difference between asking hard questions in an interview and asking questions intended to put someone on the spot and embarrass them in public with the cameras rolling.  Journalistic ethics say the later is not acceptable practice, in Thailand or anywhere else. Obviously, we are not dealing with Barbara Walters here.

But this doesn’t mean Somjit is biased against the Pheu Thai led government. She’s only biased if she doesn’t ask similar type of unethical questions of the opposition Democrats. However, all I could find is "soft and sugary" questions to the Democrats coming from Somjit. I wouldn’t be surprised that she gets cavities while interviewing Democrats, which is really saying something based upon her enormous set of “chompers.”

And come to think of it, I thought I spotted some tooth anomaly in one of her photographs.

Closer inspection reveals a possible small cavity on the upper first molar.

So I think it is very fair to say that Somjit is a biased propaganda outlet and has prostituted herself to the service of the Democrat Party and other right wing reactionaries who are desperately trying to sleaze their way back into power. There! I said it. Sue me. 

But there is a point to be made. Somjit accuses Chalerm of corruption… of being the servant of Thaksin Shinawatra. And many people feel that Thailand can’t exist as a democracy because of the extreme corruption there.

But although corruption is a scourge, it is not as big of a barrier to democracy as the unethical behavior that has become commonplace in the Thai news media.  Journalism is a necessary piece of the democratic structure itself, making reporters “democracy’s stewards”.  Public enlightenment is the foundation of democracy and the forerunner of justice. The duty of all journalists is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues.   

Below are a few snippets from the code of ethics from the Society of Professional Journalists that I'm sure Somjit or anyone at Channel 7 (or even anyone from “The Nation”) never bothered to read or embrace (of course, I doubt they're members):

Act Independently

Journalists should be free of obligation to any interest other than the public's right to know.

Journalists should:

* Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived.
* Remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility.
* Refuse gifts, favors, fees, free travel and special treatment, and shun secondary employment, political involvement, public office and service in community organizations if they compromise journalistic integrity.
* Deny favored treatment to advertisers and special interests and resist their pressure to influence news coverage.
* Encourage the public to voice grievances against the news media.
* Admit mistakes and correct them promptly.
* Expose unethical practices of journalists and the news media.
* Abide by the same high standards to which they hold others.

The expectations are set. We have to hold them to it. 

Deputy PM Chalerm is holding Channel 7 to it. He has stated that he will not answer questions from the media if a Channel 7 reporter is among the interviewing group.

Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist's credibility. Somjit Nawakruasunthorn never had any.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Boonlert’s Boondoggle

Retired Thai General and extreme royalist fruitcake Boonlert Kaewprasit has goose stepped into the political spotlight and possibly something else.  

General Boonlert Kaewprasit
As the organizer of a pro-military coup movement, he has his fascist crew called Pitak Siam leading a parade of virtually all the ugly Nazi-like groups in Thailand against the democratically elected government.

These groups include the Group of 40 Senators, Dr. Tul’s multi-colored group/Network of Citizen Volunteers Protecting the Land, the Siam Sammakhi nutjobs, Network of Monarchy Protection Volunteers, and even Santi Asoke’s Dhamma Army. I suppose we can call this a “movement” if we associate the word “bowel” with it.

General Boonlert's latest numbskull plan is to try to mobilize at least 1 million people to gather at the Royal Plaza next weekend in an attempt to topple the government by triggering a military coup.  

Why do these idiots bother to organize and participate in mass demonstrations?  After all, they can vote (although they don’t believe in voting), and public opinion surveys convey their views on public issues. A mass demonstration symbolizes something more than popular opinion to governments, to other citizens and to the demonstrators themselves. When citizens assemble, they signal an intensity of commitment, a tangible collective strength that is absent in the voting booth or on the poll-taker’s clipboard and the more “massive” the demonstration, the more intensive the signal.

With apologies to the Military, Democrats, and the Privy Council, the most massive and wackiest of all the fascist groups in Thailand is the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD). They have “opened the floodgates”… or to be more sensitive to the Thai flood victims last year and more descriptive of the PAD followers, they have “opened the cattle gates.”

The Grand Poobahs of the PAD have cancelled the group’s political activities (hate speeches, terrorism, propaganda, etc…) for the weekend of Nov 24-25 to allow its supporters to join Boonlert’s pro-coup rally planned by the Pitak Siam group.  Maj-Gen Chamlong Srimuang, a PAD core leader and fanatical nut job, announced that PAD leaders will not take part in the Pitak Siam rally, but will give it moral support and that “rank and file supporters could take part at their own discretion, as is their right under the constitution.

I think the irony is lost on the PAD. Even though their name suggests that they are “for democracy”, they support military coups against a democratically elected government. They’re proud to exercise their constitutional right to protest, albeit to overthrow the same constitution which gives them that right.

Nevertheless, even with the addition of the PAD members, will this be enough paste-eating morons to make Boonlert’s fascist dream come true of rallying a million pro coup supporters? Does Boonlert have a snowball’s chance in Bangkok that there will be 1 million people at the Royal Plaza?

One million people is a “shoot the moon” number by Boonlert and is simply unreasonable.  For one thing, it’s physically impossible to cram that many idiots in an area the size of the Royal plaza. Boonlert is obviously unaware of how much space is required to hold 1 million or even 100,000 demonstrators. 

Firstly, he needs to know the area of the space he plans to have his fascist rally. The Royal Plaza does look like a large area. Of course, there’s the large King Rama V Equestrian Statue which takes up some space (BTW, for those "looky loos" who will attend:  if there is PAD around you should avoid the area near the statue based upon past history). There is also the need for some of the area to be taken up by a stage and a segregated VIP area. Also, some of the area will be taken up by things like medical stations and “PAD think tanks” (in the US, we more commonly refer to them as “porta potties”). 

PAD Think Tanks
I’m going to be generous, though, and state that the Royal Plaza offers an area of about 140,000 square feet for a mob (yes, I looked it up). 

Bangkok's Royal Plaza
Next, he needs to know about crowd density. Near the front of a rally, people may stand shoulder to-shoulder and belly-to-buttocks. One person per 2 square feet is about the density of a packed elevator or sky train car, leaving hardly any space to wriggle through. Packed elevator rides are mercifully brief, but rallies last much longer. People shift their weight, twist and turn, sit and even walk around.

Further away from the stage, 2.5 square feet per person is akin to each person standing on the front page of “The Nation” newspaper. Toward the side and rear edges of a gathering, 5 square feet per person gives each the equivalent of two pages of “The Nation” newspaper, allowing slow passage through the crowd with repeated apologies. On the gathering’s margins, 10 square feet per person allows passage by zigzagging through at a measured pace without touching anyone.

The following table gives values for the “mob” capacity of some familiar spaces.

So even if the mob at the rally were crammed in close together and stood more or less perfectly still, they would at best only hit only 56,000.  And if these fascists think that they can fit one million of their ilk in the Royal Plaza then they must have their head up each other’s asses.

Wait a minute!!! "Heads up each other's asses." Now there’s an idea to fit more fascist yellow shirts into Royal Plaza by "going vertical" and increasing the number of people which can fit in a confined area. 

These Thai generals may be smarter than I give them credit for...  Not!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Queen for a Day

Earlier this week the democratically elected Prime Minister of Thailand, Yingluck Shinawatra, was on an official visit to the United Kingdom where she was given an audience with Queen Elizabeth. 

It was a great honor to be granted such an audience by the Queen of England,” the PM said. Speaking on behalf of all Thais, she congratulated Queen Elizabeth on her Diamond Jubilee, marking 60 years on the throne.

This must make the former PM, Abhisit Vejjajiva, very jealous.  Abhisit, who was not democratically elected as PM but rather was installed into that office by the Thai military, visited the UK during his term but wasn’t granted a royal audience.  And he’s even a British citizen!

I doubt the Queen grants too many audiences to heads of government who murder their own people protesting wanting elections.

Abhisit must not be feeling too happy nowadays. The International Criminal Court Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, was in Bangkok recently talking to the Foreign Minister about the possibility of the ICC looking into the 2010 massacre of innocent civilians by the Abhisit regime.

He was also found recently to have evaded the mandatory Thai military draft and was stripped of his fake rank.

Perhaps, Abhisit could go over to Prem Tinsulanonda’s house where they could dress up and play “meet the Queen”. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

A Fascist Dinosaur Herds Yellow Cattle

The Royal Turf Club of Thailand is a horse racing stadium. But on Sunday, October 27th, there wasn’t an equine event scheduled.  Instead it was more of a bovine event led by a group of fascists calling for yet another coup in Thailand.

Although protests like this are nauseating to me, I do believe in free speech.  I have always felt that even the most repugnant ideas should receive the same freedom of expression as more accepted ones.  And freedom of speech should be less a "free marketplace" of ideas than it is a playground.  And the best way to dispense with unpopular ideas is to let them roam free, so they can have their asses kicked up and down the jungle gym by the cool ideas.
And healthy democracies usually handle these types of protests.  Unfortunately, democracy hasn’t been healthy in Thailand since the last coup six years ago.  That one didn’t work out too well, I’m not sure why these bozos think a new one would.

The rally was organized by the newest fascist group in Thailand called Pitak Siam, or Protecting Siam, led by retired General and fruitcake Boonlert Kaewprasit.

And true to the old saying, “fascists of a feather flock together (and I'd like to tell Boonlert to get the flock out of here).” There were many other anti-democracy groups represented. A New Mandala article stated that several second generation People’s Alliance for Democracy leaders, members of the Group of 40 Senators, General Pathompong Kesornsuk, Dr. Tul, and several groups allied with the Siam Sammakhi network, such as Boworn Yasinthorn, leader of the “Network of Monarchy Protection Volunteers” were in attendance. Santi Asoke’s Dhamma Army even organized the food (vegetarian pa thang ko shaped like swastikas).

And guess who also attended? None other than Prasong Soonsiri, organizer of the last coup.

He seems to pop up at all kinds of fascist events.  If we go back a few years, we can see him with Sondhi Limthongkul in 2009 when they launched their so-called political party.

Who knows what other fascist events we may find Prasong at if we looked hard enough?

Oh dear.  Let’s go way, way, way, back and see if we find him.

Just as I suspected! One dinosaur unfortunately survived extinction – Tyrannosaurus Sux.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Mythical Men in Black

On September 17th 2012 the TRCT (Truth for Reconciliation Commission of Thailand) released their final report about the 2010 pro-democracy protests in Bangkok which resulted in the military crackdown and the deaths of 92 people, mostly unarmed civilians.

The TRCT was implemented on July 17th 2010 by the illegitimate government of then Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, who also ordered the military to kill the protesters.  Thus, the impartiality of the Commission immediately comes into question.  The members of the group were selected by Dr. Kanit Na Nakorn, the chairman of the Commission, who was asked by the government to form the TRCT.

Also, former Attorney General Dr. Kanit Na Nakorn’s ties to the Democrats are far too obvious to serve as an “independent” investigator into Abhisit’s and Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban’s role in the massacre.  

In the early 1990s, there was a land scandal in Phuket known as
 Sor Por Kor 4-01. Basically, a land reform program by the Democrats (administered by the Deputy Agricultural Minister Suthep Thaugsuban) was turned into free giveaway to rich Democrat party members.  Kanit's brother-in-law was one of the party faithful who allegedly received the land illegally. But Kanit made the “controversial” decision, over some strenuous objections from ex-judges and legal scholars, that there was not enough evidence of criminal intent to prosecute rich families for taking land meant for poor people.

A similar result occurred when the military junta from the 2006 coup picked Kanit to investigate who in authority could be held responsible for the killings in the infamous drug war.  Kanit concluded that there was not enough evidence to prosecute anyone.

So if there was a list of who could effectively whitewash the Democrats and the military then Kanit was at the top of it.  He certainly had the tools and the talent and the credentials.
This time, however, there was plenty of evidence in the 2010 massacre so Kanit and the TRCT had to manufacture a scapegoat.  Enter the mythical “Men in Black.” Not a group of lost Johnny Cash impersonators but according to Kanit and the TRCT, armed militants in the red shirt camp.

Of course, Kanit and the TRCT could present no evidence that they actually existed because they didn’t exist.  But that didn’t stop the imaginative speculation by Kanit and the TRCT. 

I just wonder where Kanit could have gotten this bizarre, lunatic inspired notion of armed men in black. 

Never mind, all becomes clear.

Just one more thing… How can anyone believe a fact finding commission headed by someone who resembles the nearsighted Mr. Magoo?

Friday, September 28, 2012

What Men in Black?

The Final Report by the Truth in Reconciliation Commission of Thailand (TRCT) offers neither truth nor reconciliation.

There is no substantive proof given that there were any armed militants or “men in black” among the red shirt democracy protesters. Yet, the report goes out of its way to turn blame away from the military and government authorities to these mysterious figures.

To the TRCT and others, even the possible existence of “men in black” legitimizes the mass killing of innocent and peaceful protesters by the Thai military which, incidentally, has a very long and well documented record of slaughtering unarmed civilians.  

The TRCT report stated that the army used a whopping 117,923 bullets in their 2010 massacre.  And make no mistake about it, it was THEIR massacre.  They caused it starting back in 2006 when they decided that the people’s choice of government wasn’t acceptable to them.  

But evidently none of these 117,923 bullets struck any men in black.  Not one.  However, nurses, reporters, and children weren’t so lucky.  Over 80 unarmed civilians were killed and thousands wounded.  

And for what reason?  To sustain the position of an unelected, unpopular and undemocratic government for a few more months.