In our last post on corruption, where Thailand’s plummeting ranking on Transparency International’s perceptions index was discussed, we ended with this: We can hardly wait for the junta’s toadies to “explain” this.
Well, not a toady but The Dictator himself has “explained” the precipitous plunge. It is a truly wonderful and magical account that should begin, “Once upon a time, in a land far, far away…”.
General Prayuth Chan-ocha, self-proclaimed premier of this magical land stated that “overall the country’s rankings in several criteria ‘were not all that bad’.” We imagine that he’s thinking of other rankings, perhaps those he keeps in his own head.
He then “explains”: “Don’t forget that everything [corruption scandals] happened in the past…”. Here, he seems to be babbling about the recently revealed corruption scandals that have come day after day. He is obviously unaware that this recent news does not impact the released ranking. At the same time, he conveniently neglects nepotism in his own family, military corruption, the remarkable and unusual wealth of almost every general appointed to his puppet agencies and more. He also neglects the crumbling of anything remotely resembling rule of law in Thailand.
The General then got astrological. He claimed soothsayers had predicted “that things that have been concealed will all be revealed.” We doubt he means nepotism in his own family, military corruption, the remarkable and unusual wealth of almost every general appointed to his puppet agencies.
He stated: “Astrologers said that it is the year of exposing the truth, but I am not concerned about it as I am always ready for scrutiny…”. The astrologers may be right, but Prayuth is a liar. He has not allowed any independent investigations of allegations against his regime. Even the investigations of the current round of corruption cases are all being internally “investigated.”
Prayuth further “explained”: “When any information has been revealed, inquiries must be carried out. But don’t try to dwell too much on it. We have to consider both positives and negative impacts.” Positives seem to include the enrichment of the so-called great and the good close to the regime.
The rest of his comments were even more farcical. Perhaps he could have just said, “And they all [the junta] lived happily ever after…”.