Paiboon Nititawan1

The filth that masquerades as senators and academics

Numnual  Yapparat

Paiboon Nititawan, who is one of the military appointed senators, exposed himself clearly that he opposes democracy. He said, “I hate elections, I am disgusted by elections”. This infamous phrase came out when he was discussing the political crisis with ex-MP Chuwit Kamolvisit on an evening news TV programme. He went on by saying that Thailand needed to overhaul the whole election system and make it “spotless from corruption”.  He said that “politicians should not be allowed to campaign for their policies because the election committee will do the tasks on their behalf”. So we are supposed to have democracy without policies at election. This is what Thailand had for years and years and it was the main reason for vote-buying.

According to Führer Paiboon, the interim Prime Minister must not be a politician belonging to any political party. Perhaps it would be OK if he were an army general. He or she would not be allowed to talk about politics but would have to focus on drafting new laws. What about members of parliament? Self-appointed Führer Paiboon suggested that we needed two kinds of MPs; the first group should be appointed according to their professions. No workers or poor farmers allowed. The second group should be elected, but they should be “independent” from political parties. In other words they must be idiots or liars. In doing so Paiboon says, we can balance power in parliament to guarantee that the will of the people will disappear under a mountain of bureaucrats and authoritarians.

I got mixing feelings when I was watching the programme. First, I wanted to laugh out loud because it was so unbelievable. Second, I was amazed by Paiboon’s extraordinary stupidity.

Elections are the best way to guarantee that people can have their voice heard. The political parties need to have their policies to give a choice to people about what they are going to do. In not doing so, politicians will not care about people and they will only protect the benefit of a few.

Borwornsak Uwanno is a good example of filth that masquerades as an academic. He is the big boss of the King Prajadhipok Institute which claims to advocate for democratic values. Ironically, the institution is named after an absolute monarch who had to be overthrown in the 1932 revolution in order that Thailand could have a constitution and parliament. Borwornsak, who has appointed himself as a “legal expert”, comes up with his political reform plans. Most of his suggestions are repeatedly echoed by people like Führer Paiboon and the rest of the appointed anti-democratic senators. Borwornsak is like a chameleon. He served Taksin and then the military. He changes spots to suit his career.

This article cannot be completed if I do not mention a few big name academics who support the dictatorship. They seem to not understand the basic democratic principles at all. They are Surichai Wankaew, Chantana Banpasirichote , Chaiwat Satha-Anand and Kotom Areeya. Many are “gurus” of the NGO movement. In order to avoid the violence in the current crisis, they claim that we should consider having an appointed Prime Minister. These people love to claim that they are “neutral”. However, Assistant Professor Yukti Mukdawijitra has asked them how they could claim to be neutral between dictatorship and democracy? What are their basic democratic principles, if they have any?  Yukti went on to ask, “why have these people never come out to protect democracy and elections?” Where is their responsibility? Ordinary people always pay the price for the cowardly behaviour of such academics. These people are holding on to their own privileges. They do not want to dissatisfy people who are in the power. Then they receive countless academic titles, rewards and handsome funds.  We should have zero tolerance for such ugly behaviour.