This makes my blood boil. The Prime Minister of Thailand has denounced protesters who are planning to disrupt the ASEAN (Association of South-East Asian Nations) conference held soon in Thailand. He says they can protest as much as they want, but they mustn’t do anything illegal.
The last decade of Thai politics has been endless repeats of the following pattern: a certain party (whose name keeps changing, but may be called the red party) wins elections because the poor majority vote for it, due to its promises to provide them with things like credit and healthcare. The opposition, middle-class urban conservatives (the yellows) make it impossible for that government to function. Then the courts or the army, who support the yellows, remove the red government from power and get it replaced by a conservative yellow one.
So prime minister Abhisit is the direct result of illegal and unconstitutional methods – though technically having the support of sufficient elected MPs, he is in effect a dictator, a front for the vested interests that dominate Thai society. And now he turns around and says that his opponents, who are justifiably fucking angry, must respect the law.
I have little respect for the law in general. I find this case infuriating simply because it makes so clear the absolute hypocrisy of its application.
I also don’t have all that much respect for the red politicians – they combine economic redistribution with generalised authoritarian abuse of minorities (Myanmar refugees, Muslims) and killed a lot of people with their own ‘war on drugs’. But the yellow government seems little better on most of these issues, quite possibly worse, and economically is much less favourable to the majority.
Anyway, this is hardly an insightful or penetrating post, just a register of disgust at the hypocrisy of the Thai leaders in their ongoing struggle to deprive the masses of their electoral voice.