The People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) had significant strength when going after Thaksin Shinawatra. They successfully achieved their goals with leverage to spare. But now it seems that when a new target is in their sights, the number of supporters dwindles.
Thailand remains polarized being either pro or anti Thaksin. Because of that lack of middle ground, huge numbers of supporters could be summoned to attend a rally. Unlike the Red Shirts where the poor were hired to attend, the PAD came on their own accord and at their own expense.
But now the PAD have moved on to other topics, and because the polarization does not exist and varying degrees of urgency abound, then for lack of a better term they are not in their sweet spot.
The issue of changing the 2007 Constitution is about he strongest point they have. Seeing that the Constitution was designed to keep Thaksin and other future Thaksin’s in a state of check, they have the ability to muster some traction, but that may be too little too late.
One article that requires all agreements with other countries to be approved by Parliament is simply meant to put any sweetheart deals in the spotlight subject to the approval of Parliament.
The other article has to do with election numbers and structure of constituencies. This article was meant to make it harder to by votes, and that problem is still chronic in Thailand.
Issues related to the border and if Thai land is being given away are much less direct. This issue requires removing the Thai tendency to push it out on the calendar and come to an agreement. Seeing that this has been dragging on for about 50 years, that pushing out tendency is obvious. The PAD simply wants to bring closure to this. It also is a bit self serving as it tends to become a plank on their political agenda. As it was one of Thaksin’s cronies that restarted the border dispute, this also is Thaksin motivated.
One of the reasons the PAD will have less punch is because both of these issues are one step removed and assume Thaksin will use them to his benefit, and for the record, that is almost insured because the same holds true with everyone else who holds a political office that these changes will affect. It has been accurately cited in the local news that all of the changes are essentially self serving and only effect politicians and not the Thai people.
Thaksin on the other hand is playing a shrewd card by boycotting any and all concerns that are about amending the Constitution. They are standing behind restoring the previous Constitution that allowed him to rape the country. That fact is proven based in a court ruling that took his assesses that were ruled to be ill gotten under that Constitution. As Thaksin is a creature of habit, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind he will pickup where he left off if he was ever returned to power.