Yingluck? Press screaming Clone & Screaming Puppet

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Introduction:

Clone, Clone, Puppet, Puppet, Bitch, Bitch: That is about all one hears from Yingluck’s critics!

In the Hollywood movie, “Lost in Translation” a western executive went to Japan, and found out that he knew very little about the Japanese culture and how the Japanese did things, in general.

  • In sum, that western executive was lost. The movie was a hit.

In the 1970s, as I was studying in the USA, Japanese corporations were on a rise, globally. And everywhere in the USA, people tried to figure out how the Japanese have become successful, competing and winning against USA firms.

Basically, after years, of thinking about the Japanese way, many western analysis, pointed to the Japanese corporate groupings and  just in time manufacturing, as the reason Japanese corporations were competing so well. There was also a great deal of talk about the Japanese focus on long-term results.

In sum, for a long time, western executives were lost. Like the Hollywood movie, “Lost in Translation” was a hit, studying the Japanese corporations’ way was a hit. Thailand has captured a great deal of global interest, particularly from global news organizations. One subject, foreign news organizations focus on, in the reporting of Thailand, is politics. Where, here, it is well known, that the old saying about Thailand, quote: “Government comes and goes, but policies stay the same” is no longer applicable.

In fact, these days, thinking on Thai economics, is as “Divided” as thinking on Thai politics.

Yingluck is currently, Thailand’s Prime Minster. Thus a great deal of foreign news unit has focus on reporting about her.

Of course, Thaksin himself, says Yingluck is his clone. But what was the context? What does Thaksin mean to say? Is he just bragging,  to show off his power? We do not have the answers!

All there is, is that in reporting about Yingluck, for some reason, most foreign press, have latched on, to “Fiercely Criticizing” Yingluck as being Thaksin’s “Clone.”

But are these foreign journalist and editors, fiercely criticizing Yingluck, “Lost in Translation” in reporting news about Thailand? Yingluck the “Clone” sounds fascinating, and clearly can help increase news circulation.

But to the average Thai person, is that “Clone” news, news at all?

(Up-Dated) A coup had occurred, by Prayuth. The coup came after a combination of Suthep, former security chief of Abhisit lead protest and judicialization, rendered the Yingluck government not able to function. That un-able to function, coupled with opposing protest, from Suthep and the Reds, lead army chief to attempt to broker a deal, but he failed, and as a result took control. Subsequent news from Suthep, says he an Prayuth have been working together to topple Yingluck. Prayuth deny the charges. The Suthep protest gained momentum, after the Yingluck government approved a blanket amnesty. She reversed that decision, after several massive protest, but the protest continued and eventually died off. But the damage was done, Suthep protest became small but potent. On that decision for a blanket amnesty, many said it was Thaksin’s decision, that over-ride Yingluck’s objection.

(Up-Dated) Yingluck was kicked out of office by a coup, about 6 months ago, and is being investigated for failure to stop corruption, that at this stage, the corruption is alleged corruption. Suthep said, he and Prayuth, have been working together, to destabilize Thailand, for the setting up of a coup, for a Thailand under a Dictatorship.

1)

Yingluck: A Thaksin Clone? 

Reading foreign press, about Yingluck being Thaksin’s clone, one gets the impression, that Yingluck is a brain dead Thai Prime Minster. Reading too much of those Yingluck the “Clone” articles, can leave a person, thinking that Yingluck is “A Zombie” and “A Lackey” to her brother, Thaksin.

But who is Yingluck and what is she about, like really? Is being a “Clone” all there is about Yingluck? Like those Japanese firms in the 1970s, that were so successful, Yingluck appears to be a great success. At a young age, she is already Thailand’s Prime Minister, and help built several leading Thai firms, and gotten wealthy. Millions of Thai support her and found her to be a great Prime Minister.

Like those Japanese firms, that so confused westerners with all their success; what is Yingluck’s secret of success? And like those Japanese firms, is Yingluck just a part of a grouping, in this case, a political family grouping? Also, like the Japanese firms, does she think long-term, avoiding the pitfall of short-term thinking?

  • Of who is Yingluck, Wikipedia says:

Born in Chiang Mai province into a wealthy family of Chinese descent,[4] Yingluck Shinawatra earned a bachelor’s degree from Chiang Mai Universityand a master’s degree from Kentucky State University, both in public administration.[5] She became an executive in the businesses founded by her elder brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, and later became the president of property developer SC Asset and managing director of Advanced Info Service. Meanwhile, her brother Thaksin became Prime Minister, was overthrown in a military coup, and went into self-imposed exile after a court convicted him of abuse of power.

In May 2011, the Pheu Thai Party, which maintains close ties to Thaksin, nominated Yingluck as their candidate for Prime Minister in the 2011 general election.[6][7] She campaigned on a platform of national reconciliation, poverty eradication, and corporate income tax reduction, but the ruling Democrat Party claimed that she would act in the interests of her exiled brother.

The Pheu Thai Party won a landslide victory, winning 265 seats in the 500 seat House of Representatives of Thailand,[8] It was only the second time in Thai political history that a single party won a parliamentary majority, the first party was her brother’s party, Thai Rak Thai Party.

2)

Establishment:

Drumming Up Yingluck the “Clone”

Thaksin, in a Forbes magazine interview, says, quote: “Thailand has two English language newspapers. Unfortunate for me, both are against me.” What Thaksin was talking about, is Bangkok Post and the Nation.

  • There is a great deal of complain about foreign press covering Thailand, by most independent media observer. And that is foreign press in Thailand, would read and take “The Cue” meaning, follow, the local English language press lead. That means Bangkok Post and the Nation.

And!

  • Apart from their anti Thaksin and anti Yingluck position, the problem is that, both Bangkok Post and the Nation are read mostly by foreigners in Thailand, and their news is produced for foreigners. What that means, is that they do not represent how the Thai people sees things or what the Thais see as important.  In fact, both serve the Elite anti Democracy, Thai Establishment, making what they write, even less representative of what the Thai thinks.

Clearly, for foreign news services, following the Bangkok Post and the Nation lead, results in them being lost to what the Thai people think. Similar to that western executive in Japan, in that Hollywood movie, “Lost in Translation” most Thai media observer says, most foreign journalist in Thailand, are lost.

Many media professional, in Thailand, have pointed out, that foreign journalist in Thailand, should make an attempt to seriously follow the local Thai language press.

The fact is, Nation group newspaper sells about 10,000 copies a day, and Bangkok Post, about 40,000 copies a day. The number of Thais reading the Bangkok Post and the Nation is only as fraction of that number. On the other hand, Thai language newspaper is read by 10s of millions of Thais every day.

  • In sum, Bangkok Post and the Nation, could be the main cause, why foreign press in Thailand, have existed in a “Lost in Translation” universe, about Thai people and Thailand.

The following is the latest from the Nation Group, on Yingluck the “Clone” issue. Report like the following Nation article, is what most foreign journalist “Wrongly” think, is what the Thais are thinking, and they copy the Nation attitude.

  • The Nation, March 19, 2013 reported:

Thaksin’s shadow looms large over Yingluck’s govt

The prime minister is not being helped by her fugitive brother’s regular demonstrations that he is in charge of this administration.

With the government under fire over its attempt to raise Bt2.2 trillion for infrastructure mega-projects, anything that has the potential to divert public attention from the issue is viewed with great suspicion. The revival of the amnesty controversy might be one such distraction. But what about the latest high-profile Skype address to the Pheu Thai Party by fugitive former premier Thaksin Shinawatra?

Apart from “advising” his party about current affairs, there is not much new. Thaksin is the party’s real boss and he doesn’t even try to hide it. The Skype contact emphasized the two key issues – the long-delayed amnesty plan and the borrowing for mega-projects. Both have generated heated debate and, in their own ways, affected the credibility of his sister’s government.

Obviously Thaksin wants the two grand plans to go ahead. And as always, he focused on benefits and papered over flaws and shortcomings. It’s debatable whether he can manage to dress up the two controversial agendas, but the much-publicised Skype communication has its own consequences affecting the Yingluck administration, regardless of whether a general amnesty is underway or whether the state is broke or not.

The biggest effect, of course, is that the overseas call confirms Thaksin’s status as the ruling party’s patriarch, but he has done this countless times before. Whenever his sister tells the international media about her “independence”, he will pop up to disprove her words. We wonder if Yingluck cares, because she has never denied listening to Thaksin’s advice. Only she knows whether what her brother does has crossed the advisory line into the realm of taking actual command.

Supporters of Pheu Thai or Thaksin might shrug it off. This is the way the “injustice” that befell them should be corrected, they say. But Thaksin pulling the strings from afar is witnessed by unsympathetic eyes as well. There are investors who are turned off by freak politics. There are those who don’t like the government’s amnesty plan, and Thaksin’s conference calls simply galvanise them. There are foreign diplomats who are wondering what to do if “the other side” comes to power.

Everyone knows that Yingluck is not a seasoned politician. But if Thaksin thinks he is helping, he should think again. For one thing, Yingluck should be given a chance to serve as the elected prime minister, not a puppet premier. On non-Thaksin issues, she has not done too badly. What undermines her authority are the suspicious agenda items that have his shadow looming all over them.

The government is promoting “reconciliation”. If the scheme really “has nothing to do with Thaksin”, as the ruling party claims, he is absolutely not helping by popping up on Skype to ask Pheu Thai MPs to keep pushing for it. If the scheme really has something to do with Thaksin, the Skype thing is a negative and unwise political move.

As for the Bt2.2-trillion borrowing plan, economists and financial experts will continue to debate its pros and cons. It is already a highly controversial issue without Thaksin telling Pheu Thai, “You have to do it”. When he touches upon an issue worth Bt2.2 trillion, tough economic aspects are further complicated by political ones.

Thaksin can help Yingluck – by staying away and keeping his mouth shut. It’s already enough for her without him demonstrating that he is the real boss. If he thinks his Skype appearances will help her command respect in a massive political party, it could be rather short-sighted thinking. Yingluck’s problem is not winning over Pheu Thai. As prime minister, she must be seen to be evolving positively because, like it or not, there are other parts of Thailand she has to serve, too. It’s a mammoth task for her to win hearts beyond the “red” zones, but among the factors confining her is her own brother.

Against that Nation attitude, is the Thai people’s attitude.

  • BANGKOK, Dec. 27 (Xinhua) — Thai Prime Minister has been named in an opinion survey as the Thai politician having given the most constructive performance during the past year. Up to 52.1 percent of respondents chose Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra for the honor in the nationwide survey of 1,275 people aged 18 and older, conducted by Bangkok University’s Research Institute between December 15 and 20. She was followed by opposition and Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva (16.3 percent).

3)

Down to Earth Look at Cloning!

Of course, again, Nation Group serves the anti Democracy Elite Establishment, and is anti Thaisin and anti Yingluck.  And again, Nation serves as one foundation, for global press report in Thailand.

But what does an independent person in Thailand think, of Yingluck the “Clone” issue. Against the “Onslught” of global mainstream press reporting, we have bloggers, mainly “Citizen Journalist.” Not as widely read as the mainstream press, but “Citizen Journalist” are read, agreed, believed and avidly followed more, by the “In the Know Crowd.”

For Thailand, there are many blogs, curate by some of the best “Citizen Journalist” globally. For Thailand, one well known “Citizen Journalism” Blog, is the Bangkok Pundit.

Here is what Bangkok Pundit says about Yingluck the “Clone.”

  • Can Yingluck step out of Thaksin’s shadow?

By Bangkok Pundit Nov 22, 2012

Prime Ministers have few official powers, but the Cabinet reshuffle and the dissolution is when a Prime Minister can flex their muscles. While Abhisit was popular, he was able to do this and Yingluck is the same. Obviously, Thaksin overshadows everything, but he only has indirect control. He can’t make Yingluck put the names of Ministers down on the list. He also can’t get rid of her either so he has to adapt. As long as Yingluck remains popular, her power will grow.

FT:

“People didn’t know me the first day when I stepped from the business environment into politics,” Ms Yingluck told the Financial Times. “I was new to politics, but I was not new to the business side. After some time, I think I have proved I can handle and overcome all surprises.”

Critics point to the elevation of some Thaksin loyalists after the recent expiry of a five-year court ban on their political activities. But her promotion and retention of favoured ministers outside the Thaksin camp, including finance minister Kittirat Na-ranong, showed growing assertiveness, according to Thitinan Pongsudhirak, a professor at Chulalongkorn University.

“Yingluck has increasingly come into her own,” he said. “She listens to Thaksin but he controls [the ruling] Pheu Thai party more than she does. It’s like he is chairman of the board and she is CEO.”

BP: An apt analogy by Thitinan and one that BP would agree with.

From the press briefing on Air Force One, en route to Bangkok, Thailand, you have Q&A with Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications:

Q: And the Prime Minister and her brother — one of the reasons that they’ve had trouble domestically is this health care program for the poor that he originally put in place. I’m wondering if the President can relate to that at all or has thought about that.

MR. RHODES: I think every country has extraordinary challenges in providing health care or helping their people achieve health care. I think we have spent enough time in our own domestic politics working on the health care issue so we’ll refrain from getting into health care debates in other countries. Obviously, the broader goal of caring for the sick and providing health care is one that is shared around the world.

Q: Yes, but I just thought maybe it would be a bonding point.

MR. RHODES: Yes, well –

Q: He wasn’t kicked out in a coup, but almost.  [BP: Almost?]

MR. RHODES: Well, again, what we’ll say is the Prime Minister is Yingluck; it’s not her brother. So she’s the one that we deal with. And it’s not uncommon for the President to talk to his counterparts about their respective domestic challenges, but I’ll leave it to them to figure out what to talk about.

BP: This is Thaksin’s problem. He is not in the room when there is a meeting. He can try to set overall strategy, but he doesn’t have control over the implementation. As Thitinan says he is the Chairman, but she is the CEO. The longer she is PM and popular, the more Thaksin’s influence wanes, but for now he still overshadows her albeit less each day.

btw, interesting that the only Thailand question from the White House Press corps was about healthcare…

  • Apart from the in the know crowd, what does Yingluck herself think? She says:

STOCKHOLM (AFP) – Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said Monday during a visit to Stockholm that she “sometimes” thinks like her brother, the controversial and exiled former premier Thaksin Shinawatra.

“We’ve grown up together, so sometimes we think the same,” Yingluck told reporters when asked about repeated allegations that she is merely holding down the fort until her brother, who was ousted in a 2006 coup, can return.

“But it doesn’t mean when you think the same that you’ll be under the shadow of him. Because if I’d be in the shadow of my brother … I don’t think we (could) gain more (of the) popular vote in Thailand,” she added.

During her visit to Sweden, a country home to 30,000 Thais, Yingluck signed several cooperation agreements before flying on to Brussels.

She became Thailand’s first woman to head a government in July 2011. Thailand is riven by political divisions between Thaksin’s supporters and opponents, sometimes resulting in violent clashes.

4)

What Clone? Ask Thais

What is amazing, however, is not that pro Elite establishment Thai press and foreign press attacking Yingluck with the “Clone” report. That is expected!

What is interesting, however, that reading the Thai newspaper, that is not part of the anti Thaksin Elite Thai Establishment such the Yellow Shirts’ Manager, or Bangkok Post and the Nation, Yingluck the  “Clone” issue, is a non issue.

Please follow the Thai newspaper yourself, and you will discover, there is just very little attention given to Yingluck the Thaksin “Clone” issue. Most neutral and independent Thai press, does not see anything odd or wrong, in Thaksin’s involvement in Thai politics or his relation with Yingluck.

  • To say it bluntly, as foreigners yell and scream “Bloody Clone” at Thaksin and Yingluck relationship, most Thais “Yawn” in “Boredom” of the subject.

While “Citizen Journalist” the Bangkok Pundit, wrote mainly about two issues, Yingluck’s independence from Thaksin, and that Yingluck and Thaksin relationship impact on Thai politics, most Thai press, just reports on Thaksin and Yingluck impact Thai politics. Again, they are not interested in the “Clone” issue.

Why?

  • Again, Wikipedia says:

In May 2011, the Pheu Thai Party, which maintains close ties to Thaksin, nominated Yingluck as their candidate for Prime Minister in the 2011 general election.[6][7] She campaigned on a platform of national reconciliation, poverty eradication, and corporate income tax reduction, but the ruling Democrat Party claimed that she would act in the interests of her exiled brother.

The Pheu Thai Party won a landslide victory, winning 265 seats in the 500 seat House of Representatives of Thailand,[8] It was only the second time in Thai political history that a single party won a parliamentary majority, the first party was her brother’s party, Thai Rak Thai Party.

From the Wikipedia, Yingluck won an election landslide with a one party majority. What does that mean?

It could means the Thais do not care about the Thaksin issue, proved again, by Yingluck winning an election landslide, even with Abhisit’s Democrat Party, during the election campaign, “Linking” Thaksin and Yingluck together, as Yingluck serving Thaksin’s interest.

According to the Democratic principle, what that means, also, is that the Yingluck the Thaksin “Clone” issue, was tabled to the Thai people to vote on. And the majority of Thai people, in a landslide, said basically, “We do not care.”

The only people who care about the Thaksin and Yingluck “Clone” issue, is the anti Thaksin and anti Yingluck, anti Democracy Elite Establishment, and its press. Similar to the Establishment position, are the foreign press.

Clearly, foreign press, focusing on the “Clone” issue, is out of touch, with the majority of the Thai people, and doing something, similar, to the anti Democracy, Elite Thai Establishment.

Perhaps, another reason foreigners and foreign press, focus on the “Clone” issue, is because they do not produce news for the Thai people to read, but are producing news for their readership base to read.

That being the case, foreign press could careless, what the Thai people think. The foreign press, is just here in Thailand, to exploit the situation, for news to serve their news organization, interest.

It is as if, that westerner in that Hollywood movie, “Lost in Translation” went to Japan and noticed he does not understand the Japanese, but does not care.

  • But what if foreign journalist do care, about what the Thai people think?

5)

Yingluck: Over Sensitive?

What is interesting, however, is that Yingluck appears to be highly “Sensitive”  to the foreign press.

  • Her office in fact contacted New York Times!

As the majority of Thai people who voted Yingluck into power ignored the Thaksin issue, and neutral Thai press, mostly, could care less about the “Clone” issue, Yingluck is greatly concern about foreign press accusing her of being Thaksin’s clone. On top of that, in polls, most Thai says, Yingluck leadership quality, keeps getting better.

From that sensitive to foreign press, literally speaking, is Yingluck under the influence of foreign press opinion?

Why does Yingluck feel she has to react to foreign press?

While it is unfortunate that Yingluck is sensitive on this, there are some positive. First; perhaps, Yingluck’s sensitive behavior to foreign press, is about listening to her critic. A good leader, as they say,always listens to critics. Second; it indicates an openness to Yingluck’s character, that indicates respect to Democratic principles. Third; it indicates that Yingluck understands and accepts, Globalization.”

Yingluck goes further! Apart from listening and caring about foreign press, Yingluck also attempts to communicate with foreign press, and explain herself to them.

This also indicate a communication oriented person!

CNBC reports:

  • Yingluck is No Clone of Big Brother Thaksin

Tuesday, 21 Jun 2011

By: Martin Soong|Anchor, CNBC

Thailand’s fugitive former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has described his sister Yingluck as his “clone.” But the 44-year-old, who hopes to become the country’s first woman prime minister representing the opposition Pheu Thai Party in the July 3rd elections, insists that she takes decisions independently.

Yingluck Shinawatra says she shares the same no-nonsense leadership style of her brother, who has been living in exile since 2008, after the Thai Supreme Court found him guilty of criminal corruption. “I don’t just follow him. I have experienced people around me,” she told CNBC.

But Yingluck is still perceived as her brother’s proxy and one of the questions being asked is whether a Pheu Thai victory would result in an automatic amnesty for Thaksin. Yingluck says she will not push for any special treatment, “My brother will get the same benefits equal with others, so I cannot treat him special.”

Campaigning across the country, Yingluck is continuing to push her brother’s populist economic policies, including raising the minimum wage, and guaranteeing income for farmers.

She also told CNBC she wants to cut Thailand’s 30 percent corporate tax rate to make the Thai economy more competitive and attractive to foreign investment. She says that would also help companies pay higher wages to Thai workers.

Just Who is Yingluck Shinawatra?

Thais go to the polls on July 3rd and analysts hope that that will settle a long-running political conflict in the deeply divided country. CNBC’s Martin Soong joined the campaigning trail and spoke to incumbent Abhisit Vejjajiva’s main contender, Yingluck Shinawatra.

Thailand is widely forecast to grow at 4 percent this year. But inflation is running at a 32-month high above 4 percent, and its 60 percent export dependency ratio makes Thailand vulnerable to any global slowdown.

Yingluck may be a front-runner in the coming polls, but Thailand’s current Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva told CNBC that she was merely a “political novelty.”

In the 2009 U.S. diplomatic cables, which Wikileaks recently published, the former American Ambassador to Thailand, Eric John, has described Yingluck as “speaking confidently” in meetings, but “it’s obvious politics does not come as naturally to Yingluck as it does to her brother.”

  • In sum, however, Yingluck is greatly concerned about foreign press. Why such conduct? Why so sensitive? What is Yingluck afraid of?

A Thai blog reports:

  • New York Times Spook Yingluck with Clone Report

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra brushed aside a report in the New York Times that during her year-and-a-half in office most of the important political decisions were made via Skype from overseas by her brother and former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

While New York Times reports Thaksin would call into Yingluck’s cabinet meetings, and order directions, Ms Yingluck said Thaksin had not contacted ministers online during their weekly meetings, insisting, that all telephone signals are cut during cabinet meetings to prevent information leaks. That meant outside calls could not get through.

Ms Yingluck insisted she is the prime minister that she runs the administration of the country and that policy-level decisions are made by the cabinet under her leadership.

Again, why is Yingluck brushing off, the general election results and what it means, most Thai press, and on top of that, the current polls in Thailand saying she is getting better at leadership?

  • In fact, in a running tracking poll the Thai people, it say Yingluck’s leadership is getting better, as time pass.

Like those foreign press, lost to what the Thai people think & perhaps does not even care, Yingluck appear to be “Lost in Translation” somewhere, to gives an “Incredible” amount of power to foreign press.

For a second and third time, why does Yingluck, accepted by the Thai people as a good leader, so concerned about foreign press, who are critical of her leadership? Is Yingluck not confident in the Thai people and herself? Why does she seek understanding and approval from foreign press?

6)

Dangerous Weak Point

At this point, one can clearly conclude, that while the majority of the Thai people does no care about the “Clone” issue, Yingluck is “Sensitive” on the Thaksin issue. There appears to be a mental block! Potentially, this sensitivity is “A Weak Point” of her character.

  • For Yingluck, to have this sensitive point to her character is striking. Just a few years earlier Yingluck fought a hard battle, and won. That election, should have hardened her character. She should be confident. And Thaksin? Thaksin, in fact, continues to be highly popular and supported by the majority of the Thai people.

In sum:

  • Why does Yingluck feel, she has to defend her relationship with Thaksin?

The National reports:

  • Thaksin sister Yingluck Shinawatra poised for power after political career of six weeks.

With charisma and promises of populist giveaways, Yingluck Shinawatra was a powerful weapon for Thailand’s opposition party and is set to become the country’s first woman prime minister just six weeks into her political career.

Ms Yingluck’s Puea Thai party looked set for a landslide win in Sunday’s election, marking a stunning turnaround in fortunes for a party stigmatised for its links to her exiled billionaire brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, a twice elected premier despised by Thailand’s elite.

Ms Yingluck, a 44-year-old businesswoman, has earned rock-star status, capturing the hearts of the millions of working class Thais loyal to her brother, a tycoon seen as the only Thai prime minister who sought to boost the livelihoods of the millions of rural poor beyond Bangkok’s bright lights.

For hours after exit polls indicated a Puea Thai win, her supporters were rapturous, screaming and chanting her name in anticipation of a Shinawatra political dynasty taking shape.

“Prime Minister Yingluck”, chanted hundreds of people crammed into the party’s Bangkok headquarters. “Landslide, landslide,” others shouted in English.

Ms Yingluck has promised to revive Mr Thaksin’s famous populist policies and raise living standards, vowing to pursue reconciliation to end Thailand’s six-year political crisis without seeking vengeance for her brother’s overthrow in a 2006 coup.

“I’ll do my best and will not disappoint you,” she told supporters after receiving a call of congratulations from her brother.

Her late entry on to the scene came with a political marketing blitz, mass rallies and carefully choreographed speeches. Posters of a smiling, suited, Ms Yingluck were erected everywhere from bustling Bangkok intersections to rustic villages.

Mr Thaksin remains a divisive figure, loathed as much as he is loved, and has drawn sharp criticism for calling Ms Yingluck his “clone”.

But Ms Yingluck’s supporters do not seem to care and believe she will bring something of her own to Thailand, if she becomes Thailand’s first female prime minister since it became a democratic country 79 years ago.

Thanida Permsombat, a computer technician from Bangkok, said: “She’s beautiful, she’s clever, she’s kind, She has the ability to make everything better again. Now, Thailand can have real change.”

Supporters thronged the corridors of Puea Thai headquarters and scores of photographers and cameraman battled to catch a glimpse of Ms Yingluck’s first news conference since Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva conceded defeat.

She refused to comment on when Mr Thaksin might return from exile. Puea Thai had no amnesty policy, she said, and it would be up to independent panels to decide, with no special arrangements for one man.

There is little doubt Ms Yingluck was the catalyst for Puea Thai’s victory, but a rocky road lies ahead for as long as Mr Thaksin casts his shadow over Thai politics.

Roberto Herrero-Lim, an analyst with Eurasia Group, said: “Yingluck was the big factor in this win. She didn’t make any mistakes, she stuck to the script.

“She has been an impressive stand-in for Thaksin, but what happens next is the big issue. What are Yingluck’s real plans regarding her brother?”

As for Mr Thaksin, he said in Dubai he had no immediate plans to return.

“If my return is going to cause problems, then I will not do it yet. I should be a solution, not a problem.”

  • In sum, Yingluck should currently be confident or her leadership quality. Her exhibition of sensitivity to foreign press, such as the New York Time, on her relationship with Thaksin, is dangerous.

The Elite Thai establishment is anti Yingluck and anti Thaksin, with a track record of attempts of destroying both, Yingluck and Thaksin. Clearly, the Elite Thai establishment, watches Yingluck closely, for sign of weakness, for a basis of attack. Obviously, they noted Yingluck’s reaction to the New York Times article.

The Thaksin issue, clearly will be exploited by the Elite Establishment, in its attempt to destroy both Yingluck and Thaksin.

7)

Spooking Yingluck

The following is the article, from the New York Times, that so much “Shook Yingluck.”

  • In Thailand, Power Comes With Help from Skype

BANGKOK — Millions of people across the globe have cut the tethers to their offices, working remotely from home, airport lounges or just about anywhere they can get an Internet connection. But the political party governing Thailand has taken telecommuting into an altogether different realm.

Mr. Thaksin’s sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, is now prime minister.

For the past year and a half, by the party’s own admission, the most important political decisions in this country of 65 million people have been made from abroad, by a former prime minister who has been in self-imposed exile since 2008 to escape corruption charges.

The country’s most famous fugitive, Thaksin Shinawatra, circles the globe in his private jet, chatting with ministers over his dozen cellphones, texting over various social media platforms and reading government documents e-mailed to him from civil servants, party officials say.

It might be described as rule by Skype. Or governance by instant messenger, a way for Mr. Thaksin to help run the country without having to face the warrant for his arrest in a case that many believe is politically motivated.

His (remote control) return to power, even if somewhat limited by distance, is a remarkable turnaround for the brash telecommunications billionaire who was deposed in a military coup in 2006, the catalyst for several years of brinkmanship between critics and supporters that led to four changes of government and violent street protests that left nearly 100 people dead.

Officially, his sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, is the prime minister (he nominated her for the job in 2011). But from his homes in Dubai and London, from the gold mines he owns in Africa and during regular visits to nearby Asian countries, Mr. Thaksin, 63, has harnessed the Internet and mobile technology to create one of the most unusual ways of governing a country.

“We can contact him at all hours,” said Charupong Ruangsuwan, the interior minister and secretary general of Mr. Thaksin’s Pheu Thai Party. “The world has changed. It’s a boundless world. It’s not like a hundred years ago when you had to use a telegraph.” To illustrate the point during an interview, Mr. Charupong took out his iPhone and scrolled through a list of phone numbers for Mr. Thaksin. (Mr. Thaksin gives different numbers to different people, often depending on seniority, party officials say.)

“If we’ve got any problem, we give him a call,” Mr. Charupong said.

Mr. Thaksin himself declined to talk by phone, or Skype, for this article.

The day-to-day governance of the country is carried out by Ms. Yingluck, who is genial, photogenic and 18 years younger than Mr. Thaksin. She cuts the ribbons and makes the speeches.

Ms. Yingluck, 45, has on occasion sought to play down her brother’s role. Soon after taking office, when Mr. Thaksin joined a weekly cabinet meeting via Skype, reporters asked who the head of the government was really. Ms. Yingluck insisted that she was in charge and said Mr. Thaksin had joined the discussion to offer “moral support.” She has since consistently said she is in charge.

But if there is one thing that allies and enemies of Mr. Thaksin agree on, it is that he is the one making the big decisions.

“He’s the one who formulates the Pheu Thai policies,” said Noppadon Pattama, a senior official in Mr. Thaksin’s party who also serves as his personal lawyer. “Almost all the policies put forward during the last election came from him.”

Sondhi Limthongkul, a leader of the “yellow shirt” movement that has taken to the streets many times to demonstrate against Mr. Thaksin, agreed, saying, “He’s running the whole show.”

“If you want a huge project in Thailand worth billions of baht, you have to talk to Thaksin,” Mr. Sondhi, who seemed resigned to the turn of events, said in an interview.

Besides Skype, Mr. Thaksin uses various social media applications, including WhatsApp and Line, to keep in touch with the leaders of the party, senior party members say.

Many of the Skype sessions are reported in the Thai news media. This month, Mr. Thaksin had a video chat to discuss coming elections for governor in Bangkok. The one-hour video chat made news because party officials reported that Mr. Thaksin had told his colleagues that it did not matter whom they nominated because even a utility pole would defeat the opposition.

Mr. Thaksin remains a divisive figure. He retains a large and passionate following, especially among people in the Thai hinterland whom he championed as prime minister. His critics among the urban elite are equally adamant. They are still fearful that he and his party will upset the status quo that benefits them, but also angered by what they call his penchant for mixing the affairs of state with the expansion of his business empire and by his domineering personality.

But with Thailand’s economy doing well despite the global slump and its vaunted tourism industry doing even better than before the unrest, critics have been less able to drag anyone to the streets — even as they acknowledge that the man they long tried to drive from power is ruling from afar.

Mr. Thaksin’s political revival also fits in some ways with politics in Thailand, which can be difficult to explain to outsiders because it sometimes sounds too implausible to be true. The general who led the 2006 coup that deposed Mr. Thaksin is now a member of Parliament and chairman of the reconciliation committee. And the country’s former “sauna king,” who made a fortune operating illegal massage parlors is now an anticorruption crusader who regularly exposes illegal gambling dens.

The paradox for Thailand today is that despite its current odd governing arrangement, the country is enjoying what Thitinan Pongsudhirak, a professor of political science at Chulalongkorn University and one of the country’s leading political thinkers, calls “a kind of uneasy accommodation.”

“There are two ways you can look at this: you can make it into a farce, a ridiculous situation and the butt of a lot of jokes. The brother is pressing the buttons and the sister is a puppet,” Mr. Thitinan said in an interview. “But I’m beginning to take a slightly different view. This may be the best way to run Thailand.”

Many Thais believe that it might be better both for Mr. Thaksin and the country if he stayed abroad so that passions are not rekindled.

Mr. Charupong, the interior minister, says Mr. Thaksin’s distance gives him useful perspective and likened him to the coach of a soccer team (in this case, the cabinet).

Elaborating on the upsides of having the brother-sister team in charge, he said: “It’s like we have a prime minister in the country and another prime minister overseas. And we work together. This is our strength.”

For some decisions, Mr. Thaksin insists on meeting in person. He regularly summons politicians to meetings at his Dubai home and at hotels in Hong Kong, which he visits frequently, and it is a given in Thai politics today that anyone who wants an important job in government must fly to see Mr. Thaksin.

While Mr. Thaksin’s role in making appointments and setting policy is unusual by the standards of other democracies, voters knew what they were getting. His Pheu Thai Party’s widely publicized slogan during the 2011 election campaign was: “Thaksin thinks; Pheu Thai does.”

8)

Democracy vs Establishment

While, the anti Yingluck and anti Thaksin press, in Thailand, combined with foreign press, attack at regular basis, Yingluck and Thaksin relationship, as Yingluck being Thaksin’s clone, little is said about the overall picture.

  • These foreign press, apart from “Lost in Translation” are also “Lost in Detail.”

Beyond the Thaksin and Yingluck relationship, there is the issue of Democracy struggle with the anti Democracy, Elite Establishment.

The fact is, the force pushing Democracy in Thailand, is the Shinawatra Family, the Red Shirts, and the Pheu Thai Party MPs. If anything, these “Three Segment” pushing Democracy in Thailand, are coordinating their activities, but there is also a great deal of independent with each segment.

There have been countless, example, of disagreement, between the Shinawatra Family, the Red Shirts and the Pheu Thai Party MPs. The fact is, the “Three Segment” struggling for Democracy, also exhibit a great deal of “Democratic” behavior.

  • That “Democratic Behavior” of the three segments, in disagreeing and debating, makes up the forces pushing for Democracy in Thailand.

Perhaps, Yingluck, is highly sensitive, of articles that depict her as a “Clone” of Thaksin, can be traced here. Perhaps, Yingluck is concern about the development of Thai Democracy. There is no doubt, articles such as the New York Times, hurt Thailand’s development, towards Democracy.

What the New York Times article, basically says, to readers, is that Thailand, is run by Thaksin, and that the election of Yingluck, is a waste of time. What New York Times, is saying, is that Thailand, is run by a “Dictator” being Thaksin.

Thailand run by the Dictator Thaksin, is what the Thai establishment propagates.

9)

Dictator?

Thaksin vs Abhisit

In 2012, local Thai language press reports, an iconic Abhisit’s Democrat Party figure, Pichai, criticizing the lack of representation in the Democrat party.

  • “The Democrat Party is run by a gang of 3 to 4 young people that does not listen to other people in the party anymore” said Pichai.

Indeed, that not listening to other people is one behavior of a “Dictator Style.”

And the Democrat Party, for the past 10 to 20 years, have been a supporter of the anti Democracy, Elite Establishment.

But few, have reported on Abhisit’s Democrat Party, as being the “Proxy” for the Elite Establishment. Clearly, as the likes of the New York Times, propagate Yingluck as a Thaksin “Lackey” it never, once, reported on Abhisit’s Democrat Party, being the tool of the Thai Elite Establishment. And the New York Times, never have reported, the Dictatorship character, of the Democrat Party.

 10)

In Sum:

Brother and Sister

So what is really, the relationship between Thaksin and Yingluck?

Thaksin says Yingluck is his “Clone.” That statement, highly controversial, shook the globe, while in Thailand, was nothing much, except to the Elite Establishment and its press.

  • But under it all, after all the analysis and everything else, what most people forget to factor into the analysis, is that Thaksin and Yingluck, are brother and sister, meaning, they are family. And they are close. In fact, for 10s of years, Yingluck helped Thaksin manage his business empire.

What is so un-usual, with a brother and sister, working together, closely. What is so un-usual, with an older brother, who sees himself as the leader, of a young sister? What is new, about a young sister, trying to shake off an imposing brother?

There has been little news, about what Thaksin really thinks about Yingluck, in general, apart from the “Clone” issue.

However, Voice TV reports:

  • Thaksin Says Yingluck Might Fare Better

Thaksin Shinawatra said on Monday his sister, Prime Minister-designate Yingluck, might probably outdo him as head of government.

In an interview with foreign correspondents in Dubai, the former Thai premier commented the prime minister-designate, Thailand’s first woman leader, might probably fare better than him, given her being quick at work, careful and abreast with technology. Ms Yingluck will be assisted by some of the ex-Thai Rak Thai executive members after their political ban ends next year, said the former premier, who has remained in self-exile following 2006’s coup.

Ms Yingluck might probably outdo me as head of government, because she thinks fast, performs fast, is technologically oriented and scrupulous. She will finish what I’ve left undone due to the coup. Ms Yingluck is virtually my clone since she was young. I looked after her since our mother passed away… She began her working career from a Yellow Pages saleswoman, to president of AIS Co and chief executive officer of SC Asset Co. The Puea Thai Party’s pitting of Ms Yingluck as contender for head of government was just the right choice,’ said Mr Thaksin.

He said he has been looking forward to homecoming someday but will not return only to fuel a possible street turbulence. ‘If my homecoming caused any more unrest, I’d choose not to return. I’d be fine staying abroad. Coming home is just a dream of mine. But not every dream will come true.’

The deposed premier said he would by no means seek a revenge on his political opponents if he returned home. Instead, he said, he would merely help make all political and economic sectors go forward and bring the people back on path to prosperity.

A five-party coalition government led by the Puea Thai Party has been set up following Sunday’s electoral contests which saw the pro-Thaksin party win most MP seats. Portfolios of a Yingluck cabinet will be allocated shortly.

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