Tuesday, September 26, 2006

# Posted 8:55 AM by Patrick Belton  

STIR FRIED PORK: The Chronicle of Higher Ed's David Glenn interviews University of Leeds professor Duncan McCargo. Dr McCargo has closely followed Thai politics since 1988, and retraces his doubts about the People's Constitution of 1997, his prescient observations that the wealthy and charismatic Thaksin was amassing enormous political power despite the 1997 constitution's painstaking checks and balances, and in response the resurgence to counter Thaksin of the 1973-97 'network monarchy' in which the popular King Bhumibol Adulyadej has wielded power at crucial moments through proxies in Parliament and the military.

See in particular Dr McCargo's description of the coup:
The analogy for me is, you have this absolutely excruciating toothache, and you're nowhere near a dentist, and you just find some guy by the side of the road who offers to pull the tooth out with a pair of pliers. So the pain is gone. But a few days later, it occurs to you that there's a huge hole in your mouth. And you realize that if you'd actually been able to get to a dentist, you could have done some surgery on that. You wouldn't be left with this irreparable damage.
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