Saturday, April 14, 2007

The News

Now for the daily news from Bangkok. I've been following the YouTube ban with much interest. Some user posted a video that was negative toward Thailand's King and the Thai IT head guy asked that it be removed. They take this seriously - a Swiss guy was just put in jail for 10 years for spray painting /defacing posters of the King. YouTube said F@!k NO - we allow negative posts of Pres. Bush, so why would we take this one about your King off? To which the IT guy said .. obviously the YouTube spokesperson doesn't understand the difference between a monarch and a politician because we allow people to attack our politicians too... The bottom line on this one is that the IT guy shined a magnifying glass on this incident and now there is a fire - chat rooms, photos, videos that are negative toward the Thai monarchy are popping up all over now. It is out of control and he doesn't know what to do. Internally the Op Ed pieces say he made a mistake that is embarassing the country - you can't control the Internet.
Other stories not found in the US:
  • "Police catch man off to sell dog meat." He made a deal for 24 baht/kilo and it was decided that this is not cruelty to animals.
  • "Two villagers buried alive after trying to drain water for crops." It was an accident but now they're going to jail because they were draining government irrigation lines to save their failing rice paddies.
  • The south is still in turmoil with terrorist bombings. The country is 97% Buddhist, and most Muslims live near the Malaysia border - yet another religious clash. Thousands have died over the past year or two and I'll spare you the recent atrocity.
  • People traveling by bus have been drugged with LSD and sold to boat captains for slave labor. In one story, two 15 year old boys were hit on their way to the bathroom, drugged, and came to on a fishing boat. The captain said he bought them for 10,000 Baht and they had to work for 7 months to pay it off. They did and he gave them 3000 baht and set them free. The police do nothing because the boys and 774 young men and women like them can't prove that it happened.
  • Meanwhile, air conditioner and tapioca exports are increasing.
  • Oh, and JAL (airline) is advertising for a Thai flight attendent. You have to be "female, single, between 20-26, minimum height of 156 cm, minimum arm reach of 208 cm on tip toes, fluent in English, and with college degree." Guess I can't drop out and take that job.

Of course there is a lot of good news too, but I found the above interesting. And that is just today's paper.

1 comment:

  1. Fascinating!

    What does the Thai paper report about the US?