Defending the royalist party

29 04 2013

In an earlier post, PPT commented on the failures of the Abhisit Vejjajiva-dominated Democrat Party. As a follow-up, we comment here on an editorial at The Nation defending the Democrat Party.

Pointing to recent criticism of the party, the editorial seeks to support Abhisit’s party by dismissing criticism as unfair. For example, it mentions criticism by academics and defends the party by elementary school-like debate through comparisons with the mightily successful pro-Thaksin Shinawatra parties. It says:

Academics always criticise the Democrat Party leadership structure. One of the latest criticisms points out that the party neither belongs to “capitalists” or to the people. It’s just home to senior executives or veterans who have been there for a long time – perhaps too long, the critics say.

In defending the Democrat Party the editorial deflects the criticism away from the problems of the royalist party and pinning them on the voters (those The Nation’s allies at ASTV repeatedly and offensively refer to as buffaloes). The Nation’s defense of the electoral wing of the royalist elite begins:

Regarding the Democrat Party being dominated by an old guard, let’s check out its arch-rival: Pheu Thai is controlled by just one man. In fact, every party that enjoyed the strongest support in Thailand’s biggest electoral region – the Northeast – before Pheu Thai, had a more “concentrated”, serve-till-I-die style of leadership than the Democrats do.

Historically, this is nonsense. The reference to the northeast is a red herring (pun intended) as the northeast has a long history of support for parties perceived as supporting social underdogs and spurning the parties of the Bangkok-based elites. Sure, there have been ups and downs in this, but the trend is clear. Even in 2001, support for Thai Rak Thai was far more limited than in elections since, for Thaksin had to prove himself and his party to voters in the region. It is also intellectually bankrupt. The Democrat Party has been the party of royalists from its founding, and the failure of The Nation to mention this is either deceptive or reflects a shallow grasp of even the basic elements of political history.

The editorial makes the astounding claim of “fact” that:

the Democrats are always second-best because they lose in the Northeast every time, and the Northeast is a region always dominated by a party less progressive on leadership “culture” or management style.

Again, this is nonsense, concocted by the  propagandists at The Nation, to defend a party that has a bleak electoral record punctuated by support for military and palace-backed coups. As we noted in other posts, the “culture” of the Democrat Party is anything but democratic and is marked by elitism, royalism, and most recently, by repression and violence against opponents.

The problem with the Democrat Party  and the yellow-shirts who support them, and especially the ninnies at The Nation, is that they blame the poor, the uneducated and the workers and farmers for their own failures and reflects a class-bound incapacity for logic:

All the questions lead us back to the Northeast. To win the hearts of the poor may be easy for Pheu Thai, but it’s questionable Alongkorn’s apparently idealistic proposals would work in the Northeast for the Democrats. Voters in the Northeast do not care if a party is well structured or poorly organised and controlled by people outside the executive board. “Personnel” and “culture” don’t matter much to them, either. The poor think differently, or at least they do not see the Democrats’ problems the way the others seem them.

This sounds remarkably like men in white sheets explaining why the hated and feared former slaves shouldn’t be allowed to vote. It sounds like an elite opposing the march of history.

The voters of the Northeast reject the Democrat Party because it is disdainful and disrespectful of them and because many northeasterners reject the ruling class’s haughty monopolization of political and economic power.



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