Saturday, June 13, 2009

Violation of privacy, and safety valves

Warangkana Chomchuen has an interesting piece in msnbc contrasting the way the Thai press covers things like David Carradine's death with the way it covers matters regarding the Thai monarchy.

I like that article, she makes some good points and it is refereshing to see it come from a Thai journalist (even though the 2006 Fullbright grantee seems to be based outside Thailand), however I found some of the comments even more interesting, including these gems:

  • "One should probably think a bit before putting themselves into a situation that could bring them unwanted attention, even after death.Who are we as Americans that should enforce OUR laws and customs on the Thai people?"

I wonder how 'K-Dub of Oklahoma' would feel if it was his/her family's privacy being violated in the thai press?

  • "The king of Thailand acts as a safety valve; when politics here reach a point of explosive imbalance he acts to stabilize the situation. If you doubt this, look around SE Asia at the countries who have lacked such safe guards. No Thai, red shirts included, would want to live in *those* countries. They have suffered terrible hardships (ex: Cambodia). That safety valve *must* be outside the influence of political control and be free to operate, therefore attacks on the monarchy can not be tolerated.It is sad to see someone compare the proper functioning of a political system to the questionable actions of an actor".
Interesting (read: non-sensical) argument that stifling discussion (not even dissent), is seen as the 'proper functioning of a political system'.

  • "The negative comments on Thailand are very improper and likely based on little personal experience in the nation. Thailand is a beautiful nation with an amazingly sophisticated and proud culture. The King is a great man who's done many things to help the poor in his nation and to allow democracy to flourish. I've lived in Thailand and found it to be a majestic place with a very bright future. Long live the King of Thailand!"

It's hard for me to believe that 'James of Forth Worth, TX' has ever been to Thailand, let alone ever lived there. Perhaps he is one of those Three Wise Monkeys - did not hear or see any evil, and cannot speak of it?