Human Rights: 6) Iconic Ji Ungpakorn is still “Vibrant Against All Odds”

My Siamese cats always keep their eyes on bird and mouse

My Siamese cats always keep their eyes on bird and mouse

By Tammy-this blog’s humanity journalist

Ji, a dedicated Thai socialist who says he is against the Mao, Castro or Stalinist model of totalitarianism, should have a massive following in Thailand. But he does not.

“Socialism is even out in Europe and never had a chance in Thailand,” said Mark, a blogger in Thailand.

However, recently, even the right wing controlled Thai railway union, got rejected at an international labor meet. “Labors all over the globe called in and rejected the right wing leaders and the message by the right wing union was thrown out,” said an international labor leader.

  • Ji is part of an alliance in Thailand that is fighting against the Thai class system and seeking to bring social-justice to Thailand. But as he was on the verge of rising up the ranks of that alliance,  had since exiled himself out of Thailand for attacking Thailand’s symbol of class system.

To most observers, Thailand can be a fertile ground for socialism-if not for Thais rejection of totalitarianism and welcoming of populism.

Thailand’s socialism movement was dealt a death-blow when rebelling Thai intellectuals rejected China’s command of the Thai communist army and were lured by the Thai government’s peace offering to fight from within the system.

After that dissipation and joining in the system, nothing improved in Thailand.

  • Thai development continued to see the gap between the poor and rich rose to near breaking point level. And as the discontentment spread deep, with a wholesale assassination of rice farmers leaders occurring, Taksin, a Thai prime minister, emerged with his populus policies about 10 years ago.

And under Taksin, the gap narrowed significantly for the first time in Thai developmental history, with resources directed to the poor.

Not much have been heard about Ji since his exile, and his activity overseas has been limited to issuing press statements that typically make its way into the the globe’s leading newspapers.

  • But lately, he is making a come-back, intentionally or not. Local liberal press are starting to write about Jai again-as it is close to the significant date on Ji’s father, Puey, death. Puey is a famous Thai high ranking civil servant who saw the need to direct resources to the poor. He died after a life long exile by accusations that he is a communist.

“Ji appears to have not change at all, but despite all the odds, seems as vibrant as ever,” said Mark, adding that Ji even went as far as differentiating himself from his famous father saying that his father is a social democrat, but he is a dedicated socialist.

  • Mark says the Thai Socialist message can only be accepted if Thai agriculture sector deteriorates to the point that farmers have no alternative. Mark also says the same condition applies to factory workers.

But Mark says even if that happens, Ji will still have a great deal of difficulty.

“The task that Ji is up against is in making connection with farmers and factory workers,” says Mark. He adds that while Thai agriculture is heading into the abyss and factory workers are being pressured as never before, “Most Thai labor leaders have been politicized by the right wing conservatives and infected with money and corruption throughout its ranks.”

  • Observers says that if farmers and factory workers do not, by themselves, revolt against their current union leaders, Ji will have little chance at bringing socialism to Thailand.

“Other than Ji, there are few left wing intellectuals left in Thailand that are spearheading the movement. Most have gone into hiding their beliefs.

  • Ji, and the left, serves mainly as a warning to the right wing now, and because of Ji, this is an important warning to the right wing not to take things too far,” said Mark.

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