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BANGKOK 23 February 2019 14:09

Samui Bodoh

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About Samui Bodoh

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  1. Are you kidding me? In all my time and travels in Thailand, I have never come across a person so superbly and supremely qualified to be an Immigration Officer. An absolute, 100%, beyond any shadow of a doubt case of the proverbial round peg in the round hole...
  2. "...THERE is no law barring Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, as the PM candidate for Phalang Pracharat Party, from joining the electoral debate, the Election Commission (EC)’s deputy secretary-general Sawaeng Boonmee said yesterday..." But, there is the (well-founded) fear of embarrassment... PS "...The request also asked if Prayut could assist with the campaign now underway, the party’s secretary-general, Sontirat Sontijirawong, said..." Ask if Prayut could assist with the campaign underway? What do they think he has been doing with the "Mobile Cabinet Meetings" for the last year? Sightseeing? PPS Why is the EC only considering these questions now? There hasn't been a successful election in Thailand since 2011. Exactly what the hell have all the EC staff and commissioners been doing for 8 years? How much salary have they received during this time? How much in perks have they received? How much in foreign travel have they received? What have they been doing?
  3. "...The reputation was there that you’re not dealing with the most upstanding of elected officials," he said..." Pulitzer prize for the best official statement by a public servant!
  4. What a sad story. This young man was (proverbially) on top of the world with a fine career ahead of him, but decided to toss it all away for no real gain. One has to think that there are some mental issues here, and I hope that he gets the help that he clearly needs. That said, I think the authorities should throw the book at him, including jail time. It is unconscionable that people fake serious incidents/make up crap for their own personal benefit; the US sees too much of that already from its President. This is clearly one of those cases where the law needs to be applied with maximum force to act as a deterrent against others who might be thinking of a similar incident. A few years in jail might make others pause before they contemplate such stupidity. Talk about a lose-lose-lose situation...
  5. "...Thailand’s current state welfare-card system, which covers more than 14 million low-income citizens, serves as a potentially powerful tool to make the country’s democracy work better in the near future..." Wrong. While it sometimes sounds good on paper, this kind of system is remarkably easy to manipulate for political purposes, thus making it a powerful tool for abusing a Democratic system. Targeted assistance in the Thai model of delivering aid suffers from one great flaw; the rules for beneficiaries can be changed at a moments notice, and thus it is open to political abuse. For example, does anyone believe that all the current benefits will remain post-election? Especially if voters vote the 'wrong way'? If rice farmers do not support the Junta and it remains in power, does anyone believe that rice farmers will continue to receive the same benefits as, for example, rubber farmers? Conversely, if the 'Red' faction somehow wins, does anyone believe that rubber farmers will retain the same benefits as rice farmers? The flaw here is that the benefits are only available to those who register, and thus whomever decides the terms under which assistance is granted has huge power to decide who actually receives assistance. If Thailand wants to see a system whereby assistance to the poor is given without political interference, then Thailand needs to define goals/levels/minimums for all its citizens and then allow anyone who meets those goals to participate in the plan. For example, if Thailand states that all Thais need a minimum of 5,000 Baht a month to live on, then all who do not have 5,000 Baht a month are eligible to receive a top up. A system where the standards are set in advance so that any/all may participate is superior to one where all who register then get told what they need/get.
  6. "...Thanathorn and his Future Forward Party are popular among young and progressive voters. Observers are also speculating that if Thai Raksa Chart Party were to be dissolved, some of their supporters could transfer their votes to Future Forward, seen as another pillar in the anti-junta camp..." I wonder if these actions against the FFP are going to be a case of unintended consequences. Traditionally, the route to political manipulation in Thailand ran through the idea of simply removing an obstacle to vote-getting and that was sufficient. However, in today's interconnected world, information travels so quickly that any action almost immediately triggers a counter-reaction on-line. And, thanks to Facebook and the like, people all across the country know about it instantly, not just the local people. I have to wonder of the leadership of the Junta forces really understands this new dynamic; every move against the FFP will likely create a new pool of supporters as quickly as the older ones were targeted/removed. I never particularly believed that the FFP could do that well as it is a new party and its platform is perhaps too progressive for most in tradition-bound Thailand, but I wonder if I am being as old and curmudgeonly as I accuse the Junta of being... Hmm... I, along with many TVF users, talk with Thai people and see/hear a desire for better leadership in the Kingdom. Could the utilization of the Net facilitate a mass change in voters intentions? Towards the FFP because they are being targeted and attacked? Wise money remains with the Junta continuing their manipulations and remaining in power, but I wonder if they are inadvertently triggering a groundswell. It has been long noted in political science circles that a regime usually defeats itself rather than a replacement supplanting it. I wonder if we are seeing the beginnings of that phenomena. Best of luck, beloved Thailand!
  7. What do I do in that situation? Easy! Happens every other day. Heavy breathing and sensuous, repetitive throat moaning. Works every time...
  8. Bloody hell, UK. You need a mini Cabinet revolt merely to stop yourselves from committing suicide? I have made this comment before and will repeat it now... Never before have I seen a country so utterly determined to shoot itself in the crotch.
  9. "...The Action Coalition for Thailand Party (ACT) which has former anti-Thaksin protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban as its de facto leader..." Hmm... Isn't the PTP under investigation for violating the law because its "de facto" leader (Thaksin) made a few comments? How is it that the ACT Party isn't under similar investigation? How is it that the Palang Pra,,, party isn't under investigation for having comments made by Prayut? Before anyone replies; I know the answer. Just pointing out the hypocrisy...
  10. "...Thai police said on Wednesday said they were seeking the prosecution of the leader of a new political party over a speech he made that was posted on Facebook criticising the ruling junta, just over a month before a general election..." Prosecuting the leader of one of the main opposition parties to the ruling Junta? My my, what a free and fair election! Actually, I find this quite interesting. The FFP must be trending a great deal of support if the PTB feel that there is a need to use extra-legal measures to try to knock them out of the race; I would LOVE to see the polling data that the Junta has. And, when I say polling data, I do not mean the garbage printed in the media showing that Prayut has 89.04% 'determination', I mean data regarding polling intentions. If the PTB are willing to risk an arrest, it means one of two things. Either Thanathorn is pulling enough votes to significantly impact the election and must be stopped or the PTB simply do not care how bad things look; they will go to any length and use any means whatsoever to maintain power. This does not bode well. Sad, sad days for beloved Thailand...
  11. "...On arms procurement, the spokesman explained that the military assesses perceived risks every 5-10 years and how best to cope with such threats based on acceptable risks. “For instance, our planes must be ready for operations all the time. But we are now facing many shortages and they need to be replenished,” he said, adding “there is nothing fishy or hidden about military budgets. If we have less budget, we will just use krathin trees to build a fence. But if we have more budget, we can build a barbed wire fence or a concrete wall and then equip it with a CCTV system. Soldiers are like fences and we reinforce the fence to protect national interests...” What utter nonsense. Instead of writing a long, damning condemnation of the budget abuse inflicted on Thailand by the military, I will put it into words they use and understand; "Use krathin trees"
  12. "...Sanders, 77, announced his candidacy..." I like Bernie; how could anyone not like a 77 year old man who doesn't own a comb? That said, I wish he chose not to run. The simple fact is at 77, he is likely too old to be President (same with Biden); yes, there are exceptions to this rule, but... Further, although he has had some great ideas and inspired many, many people, he has little experience implementing policies. The question must be asked; did all those Bernie supporters from last time support him for his managerial experience/ability or solely for his ideas? It was the ideas he represented. Finally, at the risk of being called ageist, I think the US needs a younger person at the helm. Yes, ask and listen to advice from the elders, but the US should have a younger person as leader. I sincerely hope (because I genuinely like Bernie) that his candidacy comes to a swift end and that he can transition into an 'Elder Statesman' role under a Trump-less Presidency.
  13. "...Thailand’s political divide is deepening, fed by a cynical and calculating strategy being rolled out by the elites and powers-that-be. The military claims two coups in less than a decade were staged to bring reconciliation; the Army chief should ask himself how his discourse of hatred can bring people together. The true reconciliation that our country so desperately needs cannot be forged by dictat, hatred and fear..." The words above do have a ring of truth, but they also contain a fatal flaw; the presumption that the "Elites and Powers That Be" actually want to see reconciliation. I see no evidence of wanting to have a process of reconciliation, nor do I see any evidence of a strategy of reconciliation being implemented. While the highest levels of Thai society and governance are murky, there is no discernible policy that I could point to as reconciliatory in nature. Rather, for the last 4-5 years we have seen 'enemies' of the current Junta driven to exile, jailed, investigated and charged, subjected to various 'orders', and/or 'investigated' on a regular basis. We have seen little or no attempt to reach out beyond the current ruling military clique to include other points of view; see how many 'retired generals' now sit on 'Independent agency' boards. The line from the Editorial; "The true reconciliation that our country so desperately needs cannot be forged by dictat, hatred and fear.." is correct, but that is the policy being implemented. And, simply put, it will not work; reconciliation can't occur without a genuine, sincere desire to see it happen. Sad, sad times for beloved Thailand.
  14. You've nailed the conspiracy! All of Brexit has been a secret master plan to humiliate the UK. Beware! Beware! Juncker is under your bed! He is hiding in your closet! He has bugged your flat! Wow. I am speechless. I have always thought that keeping the UK in the EU was good for everyone, but now I am not so sure. Perhaps the EU is better off without the UK...
  15. What complete and utter crap. "...they surveyed 8,000 people in 350 electoral constituencies on February 11th..." Really, they surveyed 8,000 people on ONE day? One day? In 350 separate constituencies? Crap. "...The survey also indicates that the next government will be a coalition government, with the Palang Prachart and Democrat parties forming the core of a new government, with the possible participation of Bhumjai Thai, Ruam Palang Prachachart, Chart Thai Pattana and Chart Pattana parties which altogether will command more than 300 votes in the House of Representatives..." Really? You know how the post-election period is going to occur? BS. Pure BS. Pure, unmitigated BS. Thai PBS World and the Nation have shot what little credibility they had by publishing this blatant falsehood. This has gotten too embarrassing for words...
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