Two members of our group had a chance to listen to political science and law professors giving comments about the upcoming election on the 23 December. The speeches made us feel weird as if there is something stuck in our throats.
This is because these academics often divert their perspectives away from a direct view. They lack the courage to say out loud what party they want to vote for and for what reasons. They often will try to come up with arguments that they do not want to "lead" their listeners, they want their listeners to "think" by themselves, or that they themselves are undecided. Some even say that they will vote no (meaning that they will not vote for anyone) or there is no party with a "welfare state" policy (I think this is the coolest reason!)
Perhaps, it is our karma that the majority of Thai academics, apart from not taking responsibility for their thoughts and actions, lack the academic and moral bravery to declare their stance to society.
(However, we do respect to Professor Nidhi Eawsriwong of the Midnight University. Although we disagree with his stance, he is brave enough to declare that he supports the Democrats and Mr. Abhisit Vejjajiva.)
We, the "May Left Group", a small group of people that lacks the bargaining power and respect of the academics, would like to declare that on 23 December 2007, there is no alternative except to choose Members of Parliament and Party-List members from the People Power Party.***
These are the 12 reasons why we have to choose number 12
For those who are against the 19 September 2007 coup d'état, the only way to reverse the coup d'état is to bring Thai society back to the situation before the coup d'état, and in this election voting for Number 12, the People Power Party, is the only way.
Samak Sundaravej, the leader of the People Power Party is the only person to propose scrapping the 2008 Constitution and bringing back the 1997 constitution with the necessary amendments. This means that the rules and regulations introduced by the coup plotters (including the 2007 constitution) will become invalid.
The People Power Party is the only party that has a policy to grant amnesty to the banned 111 Thai Rak Thai executives from the illegitimate decision of the Constitution Tribunal. The ruling was contradictory to the principles of the rule of law. Apart from restoring the political conditions before the coup, it will also restore the principles of the rule of law in place of improper judicial reform which has subverted the judiciary to serve only those in power.
Other parties (especially big parties) were involved in the 19 September 2007 coup d'état plan. This includes the demand for an appointed Prime Minister under Article 7 of the former constitution, refusal to take part in the 2007 elections, and silence after the coup d'état was staged.
The other parties copy the populist policies of the Thai Rak Thai Party. Can we trust where their standpoints are?
Although no parties have a welfare state policy, none, except the People Power Party, have an anti-coup d'état policy, constitutional reform policy, or concrete decentralization policy.
Those that can remember the role of Samak in the 6 October 1976 massacre are advised to try to remember that there are those that seem "clean" but in reality were involved in the bloodshed to a higher degree than Samak.
For example, there is the Chart Thai Party (Right attacking Left policy), Chamlong (in charge of the Village Scouts), the Chair of the Privy Council (one of the members of the Administrative Reform Council which staged the coup d'état). There were also other people involved. Although there is no direct witness, but there are other kinds of hard evidence.
If you are against Thaksin, you should ask yourself if you would like to beat Thaksin with the truth, with people's power, or any possible way. Would you accept victory over him by deception, lies, assassination, coup d'état, or the other ways that have been used?
This is a good chance for those that made the wrong decision to undo your mistake by choosing number 12. You can beat Thaksin through a clean struggle, by bringing him back.
After Thaksin and democracy were deposed through the coup d'état, Thaksin has become intertwined with democracy in the eyes of Thais and the international community (like Puey Ungpakorn and Pridi Bhanomyong).
How would those who are against Thaksin fix this by not bringing Thaksin back?
Academics and activists are reminded, if they have forgotten (or have pretended to forget?), an election is one form of peaceful struggle. Peaceful struggle does not only mean demonstrations, handing out leaflets, holding press conferences, and so on. Elections are also peaceful struggles.
Abstentions (refusing to go to the poll) will not benefit anyone. It might be used by those in power (CNS) to manipulate your vote.
On the other hand "Voting None" (marking the ballot that you do not want to choose any party) might legitimize the coup plotters. It could be interpreted right away that all politicians from all parties are dirty therefore the people become disgusted with the parties (It will support the argument of the CNS that political parties cannot be trusted as much as bureaucrats.)
Therefore, you have to cast your ballot!
A vote for number 12 will make those in power turn back to listen to the people's voice. We must show them that we still exist and we have enough power to stop their undemocratic power.
23 December 2007. There is no any other choice except to vote for number 12 and bring back democracy.
Translated by Pokpong Lawansiri