14 apr. 2009

Thai politics

It's easy to see how confusing Thai politics can be sometimes. That many protesters are paid as professional protesters on both the Red and the Yellow and maybe even on the new "blue" side is not news. But that most of these protesters really believe and know what kind of reforms they want to see, is not really clear. Today luckily the violence in Bangkok came to a halt, though for how long I guess no one can tell. The corruption in South East Asian politics is not an exception it's a way to live. 

People grow up in a society paying "even" the public school teacher a private "fee" to get a better education or treatment. The police are paid under the table when not wearing a helmet. Its people get paid to vote for a certain political group. It's difficult for us westerners to understand the way of Thai living and normalization of the corruption standard. For example, Thailand has basic laws “against” prostitution, most people believe the opposite. Huge sums of money are transferred from bar street owners to local police in the areas such as Nana or Pat-Pong (Bangkok) just to keep open. Even a police officer pays other local police chiefs to get transferred to a money hungry district such as above. 5-6 years ago the sum for one police officer to get a transfer could reach above 1 million Bath.

To tackle the everyday corruption in Thailand is only possible buy giving equal rights to all people in the country. Either the political groups dress like American gangster groups in red, yellow or blue the problem remains, “who” will tackle the real problem “who” will give the Thai people their real rights to say, think and speak.

On the other hand we have to understand that Thai democracy is only a few decades old and that its still struggling to break away from feudalism like most countries in Europe did at the dawn of democracy.

All Photos on this blog copyright Dj-ingen photography 2009

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