All hail the rich (king)!

7 07 2020

The king and queen arrived yesterday at about 7am (TG971) and left again at about 3.30am today (TG970). That’s about 17 or so hours. This means that since he decamped to Germany early this year, the king’s two visits to his “home” totals about 36 hours. On each occasion he was provided with a special Thai Airways flight to and from Zurich.

Never mind that it is clear that the king doesn’t plan to actually live in Thailand and seems to prefer Germany, Prachatai reports that “[a]ll government agencies have been told to organize ceremonies for … the King’s 68th birthday while everyone is urged to wear yellow in July.” Interestingly, European newspapers are also reporting on this, noting that he will be in Germany when Thai taxpayer money is poured into official “celebrations.”

For the feudal lord

It is reported that:

On 30 June, Oranuch Srinon, Deputy Permanent Secretary to the Office of the Prime Minister, sent a letter to all ministries encouraging them to hold ceremonies to show loyalty to the King and acknowledge his royal grace as 28 July is the King’s birthday.

“Encouraged” is really an order. In the order, according to Prachatai, each state office is told to:

  • Set up altar tables displaying the King’s portrait with royal offerings
  • Set up places for people to write messages of goodwill for the King
  • Display Thai and royal flags at government buildings and residential areas
  • Decorate government buildings and residential areas with yellow and white cloth
  • Decorate main streets with lights for an appropriate period of timePost messages of goodwill on the main page of agencies’ websites
  • Wear yellow from 1-31 July
  • Ministries are encouraged to hold celebrations for the King with the leader of each agency as the guest of honour to pay respect, say a blessing and sign a blessing for the King.

This order includes all agencies including “those inside in the country, such as public schools, and those abroad, such as Thai embassies.”

In another communication, the following day, “Interior Ministry Permanent Secretary Chatchai Promlert sent a letter to all 77 provincial governors asking them to organize ceremonies.” They have to “display the King’s portrait in front of their provincial halls, decorate them with flags and cloth, put up decorative lights on main streets, set up a place for the public to write messages of goodwill and tell other local government agencies to do so.”

Governors were also ordered “to encourage private businesses and the public in each province to do the same things at their business locations and their homes.” Again, “encourage” is an order.

The unelected Prime Minister Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha had also “asked cabinet members, civil servants and the public to wear yellow [the king’s birth color] for the whole month of July.” This order was then massaged a bit by the execrable Wissanu Krea-ngam, who confirmed that the order to ministers was “to wear yellow only at their meetings on Tuesdays while they are asked to wear a yellow tie on other days…”.

Even in the midst of the virus crisis, taxpayers are squeezed for the absent feudal lord.



3 responses

7 07 2020

Agree. It is becoming a farcical situation.

27 07 2020
Posterior polishing day | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] we said in an earlier post, never mind that the king doesn’t plan to live in Thailand and prefers Germany, all government […]

29 07 2020
Birthday games | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] displays of loyalty (as it usually does on the birthdays of kings) and most of the response was state-led, with companies spending budget on “adverts” that “honor” the king.  The […]

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