Yingluck wins support from ultra-royalists

12 06 2012

To say that Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra had a political win today is to give her far too much credit. Yingluck has barely been seen in recent days except in ridiculous photo ops. She seems detached from the world of politics and just not up to it. Neither do her advisers or party managers seem to possess a single grain of political courage.But they “won” in parliament today, and they are probably congratulating themselves.

Why? Simply because the Puea Thai Party has caved in. That may sound odd, but to “win” today involved one of the most spectacular political capitulations seen for many years in order achieve a Pyrrhic victory.

At least for the moment, Yingluck and her flunkies have given the opposition and ultra-royalists every single thing that they demanded. They have caved in on: constitutional amendment, reconciliation bills, the intimidation of parliament by PADocrats, the illegal and unconstitutional actions of the judiciary, and the street politics of the ultra-royalists. For Yingluck that failure of political courage amounts to a win! It hardly seems necessary to add earlier capitulations on lese majeste and red shirt political prisoners.

Above all, Yingluck and her coterie of spineless functionaries have simply forgotten who elected them and why. In their current situation, Yingluck shows as much respect for an election result as the PADocrats.

In this context of considerable anger and disappointment, PPT is interested to read the comments of Puea Thai Party list MP and red shirt leader Korkaew Pikulthong at the Bangkok Post. He says that

red-shirt MPs in the party were disappointed with Parliament President Somsak Kiatsuranont for announcing the postponement of the third reading of the charter amendment bill until the next parliamentary session.

Korkaew added that Speaker Somsak’s announcement of the postponing of the third reading of the constitutional amendment bill was “tantamount to an admission of the defeat of the legislative branch by the judiciary…”.

His response to this defeat was to say:

Personally I want the red-shirts to stay calm. We (the red-shirts in Pheu Thai) understand the decision and are willing to swallow the blood once again and remain patient.

Perhaps Korkaew can tell us what he “understands,” why the decision was made and what the continued patience will provide? At least he added a bit of a warning: “we want to let it be known that our patience also has a limit…”.

He then said something that must make sense to some: “It would be pointless for us to bring down our own government and allow the opposition to step in and take its place…”. But what is the point of having your own government when it does what the opposition demands?

What was that about it’s better to die upon your feet than to live upon your knees?

We are sure that the word from the “the opposition Democrat Party, the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protest group, and a section of the royal palace…” made all the difference.

The extent of the capitulation by the Yingluck administration is most evident in another report at the Post. It is revealing that there were 318 MPs who wanted a lot more from their leaders and effectively revolted against Yingluck and other party bosses. These 318 MPs voted against the intervention by the Constitutional Court.

However, this vote was called when the parliament was in joint session, and 322 votes were needed. But because the Democrat Party, a handful of government members, and the appointed senators walked away from a vote that might have saved a little credibility for the Puea Thai Party, 318 votes fell four short. In other words, Yingluck’s party staged a small revolt, and Yingluck only got what she wanted because of the support of the Democrat Party and the appointed and yellow shirted senators.

Again, red shirts should ask: What is the point of having your own government when it does what the opposition demands? What is the point of a government that must rely on the ultra-royalists to defeat its own MPs.


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