Alien Thoughts

26 Dec 2008
The following questions are designed to test the efficiency of your intelligence and memory.  A high score indicates that you suffer from a chronic inability to distinguish between the important and the trivial.  A career in journalism or politics beckons you.
19 Dec 2008
The scene: A suite in the Pullman Hotel one evening last week.  An MP is being escorted to his room for the night. ‘Get you filthy hands off me.  I’ve got some important business to attend to.’ ‘Yes, sir.  We know, sir.  And Mr Newin says you can attend to it just as soon as you’ve voted tomorrow morning.’ ‘You can’t lock me up like this.  I’m an MP for heaven’s sake.  I know my ri-’ 
12 Dec 2008
So another Constitution Day has come and gone.  Just as constitutions themselves come and go. But while most people just enjoy yet another December holiday, the fact that December 10th is Constitution Day for Thailand tends to overshadow the fact that it is International Human Rights Day for the rest of the world.
6 Dec 2008
The horrific and deadly attacks on hotels, a station, a Jewish centre and other sites in Mumbai have led the media to call this episode India’s 9/11.
28 Nov 2008
The transcript of the public address system, Suvarnabhumi International Airport.  Readers are asked to imagine the following announcements read in a female voice combining the tones of maternal assurance with those of a tempting seductress.
21 Nov 2008
It must be something catching.  If you call yourself ‘democratic’, then you’re not. First the People’s (self-selected minority) Alliance (of un-democratic leaders and sheep-like followers) for Democracy proposes a New Politics that is not new and certainly not democratic.
14 Nov 2008
So some unnamed evil-doers hatched a dastardly plot to spiritually drive spiritual tacks or nails into the 6 points of the spiritual hexagon that surrounds the equestrian statue of King Rama V, thus preventing the spiritual power emanating out of the statue from saving the nation.  But the leader of the People’s Alliance for Demagoguery, Sondhi Limthongkul, was alert enough to counter this threat.
7 Nov 2008
By the standards of US presidential elections, a landslide is apparently defined as one candidate getting 55% of the popular vote.  So President-Elect Obama is some way off that, for all the headlines.
31 Oct 2008
State of the Nation’s Well-Being, Annual Report 2018 (This report is available in Thai, Melayu, Hmong, Sgaw, Pwo, and Pa'o Karen, Lao, Khmer, Burmese, Chinese and English)
24 Oct 2008
 Everyone now claims they saw the global economic crisis coming (the earliest claim known to Harrison George dates from 1854).  But few are predicting future scenarios.  This week’s column foresees a dystopia 20 years from now.  Next week’s column will offer an opposing vision called Future Good.
17 Oct 2008
This is where I lose some friends. When foreigners observe the apparent impunity with which the so-called People’s so-called Alliance for so-called Democracy can defy the police, the courts, and anything approaching a sense of reality, the typical reaction is gob-smacked, flabbergasted, dumbfounded amazement.
10 Oct 2008
The nation’s middle-class has been outraged at the use by police of lethal teargas and government-conspiracy secret explosives, without warning, against non-violent PAD protestors armed with nothing more than sticks, sharpened rods and guns.  This blatant attack on that part of society with an exaggerated sense of its own importance and an inadequate sense of reality is leading to further repercussions.

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