The Reach of Old Blue Eyes

America’s interest in the world is normally focused on terrorists and France’s inability to follow the political edicts of the White House. This heart-felt isolationism has spawned a myth of only 10% of Americans possess a passport. My fellow countrymen rarely leave the confines of the Land of the Free. Our last president’s only trip overseas was a cross-border foray into Mexico. The State Department has debunked the 10% passport number with a claim that almost 30% of Americans have a passport and that’s not counting illegals. This patriotic soliptism pervades the national media’s vision of the world and NewsWeek magazine challenged the narrow global outlook with an article calling deposed PM Thaksin Thailand’s highwater mark for democracy.

Last Best Hope at strongly advocates that the wandering leader of the red shirts was most certainly a demagogue but not a dictator much in the fashion of Hugo Chavez, citing his near-majority election in 2001 by mobilization of the rural poor, whom he rewarded with new roads, micro-loans, the 30-baht medical plan, and a peace plan for the South consisting of dropping origami birds from military planes.

Popularism sounds good until Thaksin sold the national satellite system to Singapore in violation of Thailand security laws and compounded this lapse by transferring the profits tax-free to family members. Newsweek made no comment on this trespass and only one sentence on his murderous War of Drugs during which thousands were shot by extra-judicial death squads, plus his oppressive handling of the Muslim South led to a de facto autonomous zone in Yala and Pattani.

Best Last Hope?

Maybe but only because the rich eat the poor in this country and no one speaks up for fear of the bullet from the nouveau riche and the old moneyed class.

Free the people from the reach of Old Blue Eyes, CNN, and Newsweek.

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