The senate and the military’s power grab

The Nation tells its readers about the military dictatorship’s revised plans for staying in power, a la General Suchinda Kraprayoon.

The junta is urging that “the junta did not want the new charter to be rejected in the national referendum because of a special mechanism or body to check and balance the power of the government.” They know that everyone thinks this idea is mad.

So, instead, the junta has “agreed to bank on the Senate to carry out this role.”

How will that work? First, make the senate a wholly appointed body. Second, have the selected senate select a non-elected premier. Third, have the selected senate select a non-elected premier and make that General Prayuth Chan-ocha.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that is the junta’s new idea for staying in the driver’s seat.

While the military junta might splutter about “[t]he move to have no elected senators is aimed at balancing the power of the Upper House against the elected Lower House,” this is nonsense. They just want the military in charge.

This kind of grab for power was Suchinda’s downfall, but we imagine the current crop of dozy, gun fondling, would-be Hitlers think the model is General Prem Tinsulanonda’s period in power. As PPT said just weeks after the junta first grabbed power, this has been the model all along.

The plan includes the notion that the appointed military-backing senators would also be able to “launch a no-confidence debate” any time they wanted. Say good bye to normal parliamentary politics in Thailand for years to come.

The source from the junta – probably General Prawit Wongsuwan – added that the “junta’s formula on acquiring senators and their roles would work only if Prayut accepts to be nominated as PM after a general election.”

In their wet political dreams, the junta seems to think that some kind of public support!

The report advises that The Dictator “has softened his stance against staying in power longer.” Rather than being new, as suggested, this has been his desire since he took power and the coyness is a media show.

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