Sunday, April 08, 2007

The U-Tube U-Turn

I guess most Thais must be in agreement with the banning of U-Tube after its insistence of publishing material that was disrespectful if not outright rude to the King. Americans have little appreciation or love for the monarchy which doesn't mean they have to be rude. Worst if they have, even unintentionally allowed themselves to have been manipulated for political dissent!

I am not exactly writing this in Bangkok, as this blog really demands of me.... but in the closest thing I can think of...The Golden Mile Shopping Center in Singapore, replete with Singha Beer, Thai Hawker Food, Thai grocers with the full scent of a Thai market place. Believe me, 70% of the people here are Thais.

Ruminating over this whole unfortunate phase in Thailand, I just find it odd that Thailand would have to at this stage of its development, and in the current mood of the world adopt so many of the unremarkable behavior formerly exhibited by the Singapore PAP regime. Maybe the circumstance does justify them...but then how did we get into this situation in the first place, and more important how can we get out of it?

Though a Singaporean, I have spent enough time over the last 30 years, and have enough friends in Thailand to identify with her.

My recent trip to the country side was great....encountered many happy children with rosy plump and delightful faces at the farms, enjoyed the great countrysides, sceneries.... an environment that certainly is worth preserving against the march of globalization. But does preserving a way of life or natural environment always involve negative blocking strategies.... non-improvement, becoming more and more backward and finally disappearing through decay?

I submit that it certainly is not.

I have always expressed an admiration for spirit of tolerance in Thailand establishes a neutrality vis-a vis the political ideology of the ruling party. This I thought was far superior to the "rule-based" democracy we have in Singapore.

The irony of course is that it Singapore seems to be trying hard to learn tolerance and Thailand being "rule-based".

I really don't know if this is paradise regained or lost.

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