The puppet government of Thaksin Shinawatra is making a major attack on freedom in Thailand. The government has announced they will arrest broadcasters who air the anti government rallies of the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) occurring in Bangkok. The new constitution makes the airing 100% legal, but Thailand’s ruling party the People Power Party (PPP) will have no part of exposing their misdoing to their voter base in northeast Thailand with a nation wide broadcast.
This attack is entirely expected and will certainly give ammunition to the opposition on international levels for applying censorship purely for political gain. This action is identical to the actions of the previous government ousted by the September 19, 2006 coup. One of the lasting results of that coup was a new constitution that has many provisions that deal with corrupt politicians. That constitution was widely approved across the country with the exception of the northeast where vote buying by people now associated with the PPP was not in short supply.
The basis of the rally is opposition to the ruling party’s desire to change the constitution to allow more corruption and make it more difficult if not impossible to bring holders of political positions to justice. The fact that there is at the Supreme Court’s Crime Division a section for Holders of Political Positions says how bad it was.
Interior Minister Chalerm Yubamrung, who kicked off a new censorship row with an order to cable-TV broadcasters to block the opposition’s ASTV station, denied on Saturday he intends to try to close the satellite- and Internet-based TV station.
ASTV, owned and operated by (PAD) founder Sondhi Limthongkul, is currently broadcasting saturation coverage of the PAD’s anti-government rallies in central Bangkok.
There is clearly fear in the PPP as they are just holding together by threads. The are clear indications by members of parliament who belong to the PPP who are looking at the fallout of all of this. Some PPP members are looking at their political future if and when this goes south. It has been said many times that making a deal with Thaksin is like making a deal with the devil. Thaksin has no loyalties to anyone except himself. Some of the new and younger PPP members of parliament are starting to realize this.
From the time Thaksin Shinawatra first assumed office the political power shifted. Members of parliament simply became votes and they were told how to vote by Thaksin. Individual representation of constituencies ended with Thaksin. In today’s government it is much the same, there is a coalition of parties who have agreed to follow the PPP, however that coalition is frayed at best because of the road of perils Thaksin is leading them down. The only opposition party is the democratic party, however they lack a majority and because everyone on the PPP side is told how to vote, few if any non PPP motions pass.
Thaksin is not afraid to lead the PPP down the road of perils because he has nothing to lose. Thaksin has always insulated himself from his dirty deeds with human shields or layers upon layers of deceptive documents hiding who is behind it all. If the PPP fall, Thaksin will simply buy another group that feeds on greed. This particular road of peril has everything to do with getting Thaksin off the hook and back into power, and nothing at all with the PPP working for the people of Thailand. That is the other strong point of the PAD, the PPP has done little if any work for the people.