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  • April 25, 2015

    Risks in 'adjusting' the system

    There is agreement that "adjusting" the electoral system to weaken the large parties will result in a coalition government, but those quoted in the story describe the outcome differently. The Democrats aside, the other parties have managed to work together under the same leadership before. Admittedly...

  • April 24, 2015

    Let's just revive the 1997 'people's constitution'

    Had former premier Yingluck Shinawatra's controversial "midnight amnesty bill" been introduced under this draft charter, the Pheu Thai Party's majority would have ensured its passage. Also, the proposed MMP system favours weak coalitions, giving disproportionate power to small parties holding the...

  • April 23, 2015

    Reconciliation - is that all that's needed

    The Constitution Drafting Committee seems confident that the new charter will promote reconciliation, but surely we must be reconciled to the fact that nothing will stop corruption in government. "The charter was designed for a coalition government," one of its members says. Did Thailand ever have...

  • April 22, 2015

    Education purge a warning to elected politicians

    To the surprise of the citizenry, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has already unleashed the "special power" given him under Article 44 by transferring key Education Ministry officials, including the top-ranking permanent secretary. But, even though this across-the-boards power had been heavily...

  • April 16, 2015

    New charter does not address root cause of national conflict: Abhisit

    The draft has just been completed and is awaiting scrutiny by the National Reform Council. According to the former prime minister, this charter has not been designed to solve the root causes of political conflicts, namely abuse of power, destruction of democracy, and corruption. "Yet it seems...

  • April 8, 2015

    Govt must consider putting in place 'just laws' to rule

    The junta has been blaming the international community, plus foreign governments and the media for misunderstanding the need for the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) to enforce the interim charter's Article 44 after martial law had to be lifted. Martial law was put in place two days before...

  • April 5, 2015

    Thai farmers are resourceful

    ... bandage would have saved the farmers arm in the absence of money for a doctor. Mr Arnone further states that "Thai farmers are so loyal to the Shinawatras". Well a year ago there were thousands of Thai farmers within the protests against the Shinawatra family. They were vociferously intent on the family's...

  • April 3, 2015

    Officials to defend their role in rice scheme

    Several prominent members of Yingluck's administration, such as former commerce minister Boonsong Teriyaphirom, former deputy commerce minister Poom Sarapol and former director of the Commerce Ministry's Foreign Trade Department Manus Soiploy, have charges levelled against them by the National Anti-Corruption...

  • April 2, 2015

    An apology to middle-class Thais

    ... Thai farmers. I have yet to read one letter from either a Thai or an expat regarding the true reason that Thai farmers are so loyal to the Shinawatras. Enjoying the privileged position of being an expat who lives among farmers and is married to a Thai lady raised as a farmer, I often speculate as to why things...

  • March 29, 2015

    Thaksin is to blame for Yingluck's troubles

    In his latest letter John Arnone cites the case in which burglars found several bags of cash in a government man's Bangkok home as an example of how widespread and deep-rooted corruption in Thailand is. True. But why refer to a scandal involving a few million baht as though it were more important than...