ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
Thai govt at risk of sinking after being steered into one storm after another
Publication Date : 04-04-2014
As the attempts to discredit independent agencies continue, so do the legal cases against caretaker Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and her government. This seems to indicate that the government is approaching the end of the "democratic rope" as it clings to power.
If the Yingluck government is viewed as a ship, then over the past five months it has been buffeted by stormy seas of criticism and legal cases - and the ship itself is leaking badly. Everyone on board is nervous, blaming each other for the forces of nature - and for their fate.
These people never looked at themselves and asked whether they were steering the ship in the right direction. Had they avoided this foreseeable storm, they would not be in this problematic position.
However, all we see is this ship, captained by Yingluck, gearing up for all the storms in sight, heedless of the shouted warnings from outsiders.
Having been steered through so many storms, now the ship seems weak, and everyone on board is exhausted.
Bias can be very powerful. It can change a great deed into an ordinary action. It can change a small mistake into a fatal issue.
Moreover, it can erode a person's conscience, and diminish their ability to tell the difference between what's good and what's bad.
One can view all a person's good deeds as bad simply because one does not like that person. One can turn a deaf ear to warnings from good friends, because of bias and prejudice.
It can never be wrong to say that bias is poisonous to friendships.
I am not talking about the opposition Democrat Party's criticisms and warnings, which might have political intentions. Every government refuses to listen to the opposition, dismissing them as politically motivated attempts to discredit or discourage the government from doing something that will benefit it politically.
Independent agencies and academics have warned Yingluck and the government many times about actions that could eventually damage the country. If the government had listened to them and considered what it was doing, it could have prevented such losses.
A clear example is the case of negligence that the National Anti-Corruption Commission has brought against Yingluck related to the rice-pledging scheme. Many people from various groups have voiced opposition to the scheme and issued repeated warnings about losses. The government, including the prime minister herself, has insisted on proceeding with the scheme.
On the anti-government side, the People's Democratic Reform Committee should also ask itself what it has done wrong. Seeing their own mistakes might lead them to be less prejudiced and allow them to ask themselves what else they can do to improve Thailand's political situation.
Many outsiders have said repeatedly that the conflicting parties should talk. For the sake of the country they should stop and listen.
Despite arrest warrants being issued against the PDRC leaders, the protests go on.
Meanwhile, the rulings in the legal cases faced by the government lie ahead.
If Yingluck and her government cling to their prejudices and their will to win, they might come to the end of their rope - or even see it slip out of their hands.
And when that time comes, it might be too late to examine where they have gone wrong.