Kudeb Saikrachang, a spokesman of the People Power Party, also called for Jakrapob to step down to assume responsibility for his naive speech about the Monarchy. Samak is still keeping his position open on this hot issue, saying that there has yet to be any tangible case against a young man in a hurry.
Jakrapob's speech, given in English, at the FCCT has been widely distributed on the Internet. He said he would like to have it translated into Thai to clarify any misunderstanding. Yet still, it is unthinkable that the speech came from the mouth of the minister, who was sworn into office before His Majesty the King and pledged to do his job honestly and honourably. Jakrapob is not a man who is sorry for what he does or says. He knows what he is up to. He likes to draw fire. On Monday, he paid a visit to Chavalit Yongchaiyudh in Nakhon Phanom and tried to ask the old general to defend him. This is a big joke. Jakrapob is in charge of government broadcast media and he wants somebody else to defend him over a problem of his own doing.
Moreover, isn't his request for Chavalit's help a reflection of Thai patronage system?
Jakrapob also blamed the anti-Thaksin movement, which he said is trying to destroy him politically and drive a wedge through the country. It was a bit unabashed given the fact that Jakrapob was the flag carrier for Thaksin's camp, leading thousands of supporters to the front door of General Prem Tinsulanonda, the president of the Privy Council. It is part of a diabolical plot to destroy the Thai establishment. Jakrapob has reached an unprecedented height in such a short time, indeed. But he will soon learn that there is no substitute for the long march.
Thailand has a unique social system of its own. Although most institutions are weak and vulnerable to political intervention, we still have phuyai (learned and respected men) who provide guidance to the country in time of confusion or crisis. When the phuyai speak, we listen. Although we might not totally agree with their thinking, we pay them respect by taking their advice seriously. These respected men include General Prem, former prime minister Anand Panyarachun, Dr Prawes Vasi, Dr Ammar Siamwalla and others.
The most unique feature of Thailand's social fabric is the Monarchy. His Majesty the King serves the Thai people under the Constitution. He strictly observes the law and follows the tradition as laid down by our Thai ancestors. He does not influence how tax money should be collected or distributed. This lies in the domain of Parliament. He does not appoint anyone to key positions; but he endorses the appointments as proposed to him through the bureaucratic process. But His Majesty the King represents a pillar of stability for the country. He provides moral guidance to the Thai people so that we have a sense of unity and learn how to distinguish good from bad.
Yet one by one these phuyai have been discredited by a systematic plot designed by allies associated with the previous regime. Jakrapob is part of this reactionary force, which represents "new money", against the establishment. This reactionary force's only mantra is that "we have been elected by the majority of the people so we can do anything we want. If you think you are better than us, prove your mettle by standing in the election".
So far the reactionary force has not yet provided any alternatives in terms of good governance or genuine democracy for Thai society. It has come to power through vote buying and money politics. It has no respect for other institutions as checks and balances. It has no respect for tradition.
Jakrapob must have realised by now that his days are numbered.