People leading

22 11 2021

A report in The Nation got PPT thinking.

The report “How Lalisa took Thai silk to the world stage” reminded us that, until a few years ago, it was always the now aged and disabled Queen Sirikit who was propagandized as the one responsible for taking Thai silk to the world. This article marks a change where people are leading. Sure, the article mentions current Queen Suthida as wearing Thai silk, but no one outside of Thailand knows who she is or even cares.

We then recalled the recent Bangkok Post report and another in The Nation that Bangkok was to get another King Bhumibol Park.

Nothing wrong with having a new park, but why does the city need another expensive park administration that celebrates a dead king who already has a park named in his honor and countless other monuments around the country. If silk can be promoted by commoners, why not a People’s Park instead of another piece of royal idolatry?

The new park  was presented by the Bureau of the Royal Household, with “a virtual design for a new public park that will be built in commemoration of … King Bhumibol Adulyadej…, which is expected to be completed by 2024.”

The other park Suan Luang Rama IX Royal Botanic Garden established in on his 60th birthday in 1987. The stated objectives of this park seem little different from the new one.

The new one will be a large “279 rai of land, which served as the grounds for the Nang Loeng Racecourse of the Royal Turf Club in Dusit district, was donated by King Rama X for park development.”

Donated? To who? Doesn’t belong to the king? How’s he “donating” for more royal aggrandizement (and a nice view from the expanded palace zone).

Who will pay for the construction? Who will pay for its administration?

It is Vajiralongkorn who gets the propaganda value.

So we thought, why not a People’s Park? If he really is donating the land to some other body – the reports lack transparency – then why not a park that celebrates the people. After all, the royals have snatched the zoo and Sanam Luang, both of which were popular for the people. Why not repay/compensate them with a People’s Park?


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