As Connecting the Dots digs deeper into this path setting question for Thailand, some very uncomfortable thoughts are floating about. But some of those thoughts have basis in rumor, while others have basis in fact.
Continued from part 1 we see that Thaksin has certain advantages over Abhisit, but there is one matching point between Abhisit and Thaksin, and that is they both think things out to conclusion. The is a trait not typical in Thais and no doubt Abhisit’s western education as seen to that cognitive upgrade. Even in the Abhisit government there are very obvious deliberate rumors being leaked to the media to hide this typical Thai short coming in Abhisit’s team. By spreading these rumors it lends to the illusion that things are properly thought out and they know Thaksin’s game plan. The most obvious one is the unspecified third party that looks to make trouble during the red shirt rallies. If they knew then they would have acted before the fact and no need to spread a rumor.
Getting down to Thaksin’s money buying people, there is one rumor that has been floating about Thailand for some time, but because of the lèse-majesté laws they can not be discussed. But as time catches up with everyone, sooner or later this rumor will be proven to be true or false.
On the counter attack to Thaksin buying people, the anti corruption people have very recently expanded their eyes down the chain of command looking for signs of Thaksin’s money buying people. This simply acknowledges the fact that they know this is a Thaksin tactic and fully expect to find bank accounts sporting a few new extra zeros after the integers that suddenly appeared without reasonable explanation. The news indicated that 100,000 people will be investigated, and that is a daunting task. If the Thai government purchased the anti terrorism software that was developed by the US, then it becomes easy but the followup footwork will take time.
This brings us to the next part of Thaksin’s money and that is vote buying. A recent news article that indicated that outside of Thailand, vote buying is for the most part non existent, but the more economical ballot box stuffing is still popular as seen in Iran and Afghanistan. But then again not everyone has deep pockets like Thaksin, so if Thaksin did not have the money, that vote buying news story may never have been written.
So that brings us to the susceptibility of Thais when tempted with money. By western standards it does not take much money unless you are buying someone very high up the ladder or you are a foreigner. This goes to show that a Thai double standard applies here as well.
For nightclub type venues to stay open past the mandatary closing time, all it takes is some tea money for the local police and you can stay open late, but there are some very thirsty cops and in some cases a million Baht per month is spent on the more popular venues.
Next part 3