Posts Tagged ‘Thai politics’

Thai PM Gets Fined For Not Wearing Face Mask at Cabinet Meeting by Bangkok Governor

April 27, 2021

Even if you prepare everything beforehand, there is always a chance that you will forget something. The Thai PM was fined about 6,000 baht when the Bangkok governor found out he forgot his mask for the cabinet meeting.
After the cabinet meeting, a photo of the PM without a mask was shared on the Prime Minister’s Facebook page. It was deleted later, but too late. Netizens already noticed that he had forgotten to wear a mask to an April 26th, 2021 meeting.
At the end of the cabinet meeting on April 26th, 2021, Bangkok Governor Asiwin Kwarmuang went to the Government House to meet with an officer from the Dusit district police station in Bangkok and the Metropolitan Police Bureau chief. When he met with the PM, he revealed that he violated the law by wearing a face mask in public and was fined 6,000 Thai baht. The usual maximum fine for this offense is 20,000 Thai baht. It could be less for a first-time offense.
Afterward, when the Bangkok governor spoke to the media, he said the prime minister was happy to pay the fine. This could be an example for us all.

Note: Bangkok is a province rather than a city, so it has a governor to manage it, not a mayor.

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Thailand Political Players 2006

December 5, 2009

If you live in Thailand or have read about this country in the last months, you know that the political situation is quite messy. It is so messy that it would certainly take more than 900 words to describe the situation fully. The best I can do is at least tell you who some of the players in this mess:

  1. Thaksin Shinawatra: The last official prime minister of Thailand and the instigator of the mess. He was a police officer in Chaing Mai, Thailand, and resigned from the ranks to start his own company, using his police contacts. His company was the Shin Corporation and it became the biggest corporation in Thailand by running a mobile call service called AIS. For some reason, he stepped down from this company and he started a political party called Thai Rak Thai Party (TRT) (rak meaning love in Thai). He became the prime minister in 2001 and did a lot of things that eventually would cost him his job. He viciously put down his critics. He called NGOs (non-government organizations) lazy lunatics when they didn’t like what he was doing. When there was a drug war by the government in 2003 that killed 3000 people and the UN human rights complained, he said that the UN was not his father. He had some scandals. The Burmese government bought a Shinawatra Corp. satellite with a loan from the Thai government. The buying of a bomb detector in the new international airport in Bangkok was very suspicious. The big scandal that brought him down was Temasek, a Singapore company, It bought Shinawatra Corp. for 1.9 billion dollars and he had to pay no taxes. This is when the Thai people finally got angry and he had to resign as prime minister.
  2. Chavalit: A former prime minister who is partly responsible for the Thai economy collapsing in 1997. He became a part of the TRT government as a Deputy Prime Minister. Thai soldiers were inspecting bombs at an arsenal and accidentally caused one of them to explode, destroying a nearby village, When he went to the village, he criticized the villagers for living too close to the village. He retired then he rejoined the government to help the government help fight poverty despite his bungling of the economy in 1997
  3. Chalerm: A mobster who occasionally gets involved in politics. He has three sons. Two of them who are police officers spent 5 years starting fights in Thai bars. The only thing that stopped them was that bar owners were beginning to bar them from their establishments unless they stopped their fighting ways. The youngest son was accused of killing a cop in a nightclub and was found not guilty due to lack of evidence even though he did it in front of 200 people. He ran for the governor of Bangkok in the last election and lost. What he is currently doing has not been reported by the newspapers.
  4. Chuwit: He bribed police officers and military people to demolish property that he was having legal problems with. He was not punished for this act and actually became famous for this act. He became a politician and ran for the governor of Bangkok. He lost. He formed his own political party then quickly dissolved it to join a more established party. He became a Thai Senator and he is a not Senator now because he did not run in the last election due to more legal problems. Once his problems are resolved, he will probably come back. He did run for governor again, but had to stop because he punched a reporter. 
  5. Samak: The last governor of Bangkok and future Thai Senate speaker. As governor, he did not very interested in the position; he seemed more interested in his cooking show. He had a website that was devoted to his cooking show, not the Bangkok government. He said that the Bangkok flooding was due to mother nature. He said that all rubbish bins should be removed to beautify the city of Bangkok during a summit of world leaders that was held in Bangkok once. A year before the end of his term, he said that the problems of Bangkok were too much for him. He did not run for governor and ran for the Senate this year. He won.
  6. Apirat: The current governor who actually seems to do constructive things for the city of Bangkok and has not made any strange statements or has had any scandals.
  7. Abhisit: The head of the Democratic Party and wants to be the next prime minister when they resolve the mess caused by Thaksin’s resignation. He seems to be competent and has not done anything to question his competency.     
  8. Banharn Silpa-archa: The head of the Chart Thai Party. His nickname is The Eel. His party usually forms a coalition with the party that has the most seats, but not enough to dominate Parliament. It makes sure that his party is part of the people in charge. It does mean that you are never sure what he is going to do. He is slippery like an eel.                                                                                                        

The 2000s: Death of a Big Man

November 27, 2009

On November 24th, 2009, a man named Samak died at the age of 74. He had been suffering from liver cancer for a long time and his death did not come as a surprise.
He had been the 25th prime minister of Thailand. He had been the governor of Bangkok from 2000 to 2004. He had been a member of the Thai parliament for many years. Many obituaries will say that he served his country. Did he serve his country well? Historians and other people will be the determination of that.
What can definitely be said that one word that would be used to describe was big. He had a big nose, big eyes, big nose and a big belly. It was if he had been a giant once and had been shrunk down to the size of z human, keeping the big features of his giant race.
He was not exactly a shy person and was not afraid to use his big mouth to express his views. It is his mouth that some people will remember him for.
In 1976, it was probably when he used his mouth the most destructively. He went on the radio and said that students were gathering at a local university. He said that the students were communists. Some extreme right-wing people took him seriously and went to the university, They lynched some of the students. Other students were able to get safely away. Some people think he is responsible for the massacre. When he was prime minister, he insisted to a CNN reporter that there was no massacre, even though there are many pictures of dead bodies at the university. This reopened old wounds and upset many people. His mouth had insulted the people who had been there or the ones who had lost their loved ones in the massacre.
As governor of Bangkok, his mouth was most active, but it did not seem interested in making Bangkok a better city. His mouth mostly talked about the cooking show that he hosted on a weekly basis and the celebrities that he met being the governor of Bangkok. He had a website devoted not to his main job of being the governor of one of the biggest cities on the planet, but to his cooking show. His main job just seemed a means to promote his cooking show and the city did not improve because of his stewardship.
One inspired idea that he had was to remove all the trash bins during a major summit of world leaders that was being held in Bangkok. He felt that the trash bins made the city look ugly. He put no thought in what would happen to the trash that would have to dumped on the street by people because there was no trash bins to put them in. A city would be truly be ugly with trash everywhere. Thankfully, his idea was never put into reality.
As governor, he said that mother nature was responsible for the flooding in the city of Bangkok. This would only be true if you consider mother nature to include buildings, streets and pipes. His mouth got him into trouble again.
As prime minister, his mouth seemed most obsessed with he called the Invisible Hand. The protesters that had partly driven Thaksin out of power had plagued him as well for most people had seen him as Thaksin’s nominee. Some viewed him as being chosen by Thaksin to be prime minister to protect Thaksin and to make sure that Thaksin was not punished for the misdeeds that he had done during his time as prime minister. Samak felt that the protesters were being controlled by an Invisible Hand that was keeping him from ruling the country properly.
Ironically, in the end, his downfall came from the cooking show that he was so concerned about when he was governor. As a prime minister of Thailand, you are not allowed to have any other job than being prime minister. He claimed that doing the cooking show was not really a job. A Thai court ruled that it was indeed a job and he had to step down as being prime minister. Some would see it as justice for ignoring his responsibilities of being a governor.
A few weeks after his downfall, he was found guilty of libel. He had repeatedly insulted another important person during a political show that he used to have. He was sentenced to two years of jail because libel in Thailand is a criminal as well as a civil offence. The cancer that killed him helped him not serve a day in jail for he used the illness as an excuse not to serve time in jail.
His mouth was silenced on a day in November. Some people might be happy that it was silenced. Some people think that his unique voice will be missed. Again, people in the future will have to make that judgement. On November 24th, 2009, a man named Samak died at the age of 74. He had been suffering from liver cancer for a long time and his death did not come as a surprise.
He had been the 25th prime minister of Thailand. He had been the governor of Bangkok from 2000 to 2004. He had been a member of the Thai parliament for many years. Many obituaries will say that he served his country. Did he serve his country well? Historians and other people will be the determination of that.
What can definitely be said that one word that would be used to describe was big. He had a big nose, big eyes, big nose and a big belly. It was if he had been a giant once and had been shrunk down to the size of z human, keeping the big features of his giant race.
He was not exactly a shy person and was not afraid to use his big mouth to express his views. It is his mouth that some people will remember him for.
In 1976, it was probably when he used his mouth the most destructively. He went on the radio and said that students were gathering at a local university. He said that the students were communists. Some extreme right-wing people took him seriously and went to the university, They lynched some of the students. Other students were able to get safely away. Some people think he is responsible for the massacre. When he was prime minister, he insisted to a CNN reporter that there was no massacre, even though there are many pictures of dead bodies at the university. This reopened old wounds and upset many people. His mouth had insulted the people who had been there or the ones who had lost their loved ones in the massacre.
As governor of Bangkok, his mouth was most active, but it did not seem interested in making Bangkok a better city. His mouth mostly talked about the cooking show that he hosted on a weekly and the celebrities that he met being the governor of Bangkok. He had a website devoted not to his main job of being the governor of one of the biggest cities on the planet, but to his cooking show. His main job just seemed a means to promote his cooking show and the city did not improve because of his stewardship.
One inspired idea that he had was to remove all the trash bins during a major summit of world leaders that was being held in Bangkok. He felt that the trash bins made the city look ugly. He put no thought in what would happen to the trash that would have to dumped on the street by people because there was no trash bins to put them in. A city would be truly be ugly with trash everywhere. Thankfully, his idea was never put into reality.
As governor, he said that mother nature was responsible for the flooding in the city of Bangkok. This would only be true if you consider mother nature to include buildings, streets and pipes. His mouth got him into trouble again.
As prime minister, his mouth seemed most obsessed with he called the Invisible Hand. The protesters that had partly driven Thaksin out of power had plagued him as well for most people had seen him as Thaksin’s nominee. Some viewed him as being chosen by Thaksin to be prime minister to protect Thaksin and to make sure that Thaksin was not punished for the misdeeds that he had done during his time as prime minister. Samak felt that the protesters were being controlled by an Invisible Hand that was keeping him from ruling the country properly.
Ironically, in the end, his downfall came from the cooking show that he was so concerned about when he was governor. As a prime minister of Thailand, you are not allowed to have any other job than being prime minister. He claimed that doing the cooking show was not really a job. A Thai court ruled that it was indeed a job and he had to step down as being prime minister. Some would see it as justice for ignoring his responsibilities of being a governor.
A few weeks after his downfall, he was found guilty of libel. He had repeatedly insulted another important person during a political show that he used to have. He was sentenced to two years of jail because libel in Thailand is a criminal as well as a civil offence. The cancer that killed him helped him not serve a day in jail for he used the illness as an excuse not to serve time in jail.
His mouth was silenced on a day in November. Some people might be happy that it was silenced. Some people think that his unique voice will be missed. Again, people in the future will have to make that judgment.

The Democrat’s Populist Program

November 24, 2009

On November 21st, 2009, the prime minister of Thailand is visiting various provinces near Chang Mai. He is visiting those provinces for the opening of a program that will help country people pay off their loan sharks. This program will hopefully work as past programs have not been successful.
Under the Thaksin administration, they gave a million baht to every village as a way to deal with the loan shark problem. If did not work. They did pay off the loan sharks. Obviously, they would eventually run out of the money and have to ask for new loans from the loan sharks as the program did not continue beyond the million baht. This program done by the current administration will hopefully be a more permanent solution to this loan shark problem.
This program is also a way hopefully for the Democrat Party to get voters from the North and the Northeast. Their traditional power base has been in Bangkok and the South. Thaksin and his people were able to win over these people with programs like the million baht program and the health insurance program where you only had to pay 30 baht for anything that you did medically. They also gave the people free cows. Thaksin would also literally give money to people on the streets. The Democrats are attempting to win the people of the North and the Northeast by attempting to do a populist program like the Thaksin people.