Thailand’s Democracy Collapse Disorder

By Paw Siriluk Sriprasit

As a global citizen and an environmental journalist, I am always watching out and waiting to get more information to write about the bees’ colony collapse disorder (CCD) – the world is now facing. The CCD is an extremely important problem that can put the human kind to an end. As Maurice Maeterlinck wrote in ‘The Life of the Bee (1901)’  “if the bee disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.” No bees mean no food, “as bees are the most important pollinator of our fruit, flowers, vegetables, and crop. About a third of the world’s food supply depends on bees” said Marla Spivak, a well-known American entomologist.

For anyone who is not familiar with this subject – the bees’ colony collapse disorder (CCD) is a phenomenon in which worker bees from beehives abruptly disappear. The CCD occurred in late 2006 and also began to happen afterwards, mostly in Western colonies in North America and Western Europe. The cause of CCD is somewhat unclear, but the possible factors have been studied by many institutions and universities. Key causes that distributed for CCD are overuse of pesticides, fungicides, diseases, bee mites, and electromagnetic radiation from electronic communication devices (wifi, mobile phones, etc.).

Happen to be that I’m not only a global citizen and journalist, but was also born and raised in Thailand. So enough caring for bees and talking about CCD for now. I’m proposing that what Thai politics and society are currently facing can be called “Democracy Collapse Disorder” (DCD). Why DCD? I’ll try to comprehend this phenomenon for you, however your final consideration and judgment are with you, the readers. But let me try.

AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit

AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit

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MTV, the Philippines Typhoon and Grotesque

By Daniel Isler

Grotesque: adjective. comically or repulsively ugly or distorted.  incongruous or inappropriate to a shocking degree.” (Oxford Dictionaries). 

A cute guy with a perfect nose comes out of a rain of confetti. He is accompanied by a robot-like figure, covered all in white and wearing a robot-mask. The cute guy is wearing a leopard print scarf and a red jacket.  The crowd is ecstatic, just as it has been for the last two hours. What will the cute guy do next? This evening is full of surprises, and the crowd is hungry for another one. Surprisingly, the guy and the robot do not start dancing, twerking, or lighting a joint on stage. The cameras do not fly around them, no music is being heard. the guy addresses the audience, ask them for their attention:  “um… I’d like to invite you to join me in a moment of silence for the people in the Philippines that are suffering because of this horrible typhoon that’s affected this country”. The audience is obviously baffled. This whole evening they are encouraged to party like there is no tomorrow. Now this pretty-boy wants them to be silent? The “moment” lasts 10 seconds, as it is clear that a lot of people in the crowd did not understand what he asked for, or worse – they did understand, but genuinely do not give a rat’s arse.

jared-leto-reclame-un-hommage-aux-victimes[1]

We salute you.

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The US shutdown: democracy at high rise or big low?

By Noort Bakx

While We Should Name This Soon is back in business, America is still under shutdown. Yes, the government shutdown, with more than a week of closed business, those who have not lived under a stone have been spammed with it the last days. Due to the incapacity of the Democrats and the Republicans to reach consensus over the budget, the non-essential government facilities have been closed and thousands of officials have been sent home. I think we can all agree on the ridiculousness of the situation, the closing down of the United States of America. As far as my research has shown, an unique situation as well.

pic obama

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Giving back ‘demos’ to democracy

 by Laura Vilaça

I should start by stating that I am one of the fiercest critics of my generation. I believe we have been too spoiled and that this is now taking a toll in the socio-cultural evolution(?) of our countries; we were fed dreams of greatness and easy money and, stupidly enough, we still believe them. It’s a generation that, as the band Deolinda puts it when referring to internships and precarious jobs, “has to study to become a slave”.

However, a recent article on the “post-1980s Generation” got me thinking. With all this time wasted on trying to define what “we” are, more relevant debates are being neglected or left out entirely. “We”, as the present generation, are offered an incredible, historical opportunity: the opportunity to significantly change things. And I’m not referring to changing the world in a 16-and-pregnant-naïve kind of way; I am referring to the remarkable power that a mass group of people has.

The group I’m specially reporting on is the “post-1980s Generation”, born after the major world conflicts and into a world thriving with economic prosperity (in the Western side, at least). This generation is more educated than any ever was, relatively well travelled and with a defiant, rebellious spirit brewed from years of amorphous politics. In Europe, these traits cross borders, as we are more than ever bound by our common struggles and anxieties, not being able to imagine life without a common currency or open borders. Though many criticize the European Union and its policies, seldom one can find a youngster that would give up the perks of being within the EU for a more domestic existence. 

EU

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I will be your President!

By Camy Roch

During all my school years, I’ve never been the kind of kid up for the class delegate’s run. Call it carelessness or lack of competitive spirit, I’ve always considered the whole process to be a bit lame as well as a trouble-making responsibility – once again, that’s just my opinion, dude.

I guess that’s partly why I was so surprised when I was showed a documentary, where Chinese pupils compete for the class monitoring.

please-vote-for-me

Please vote for me, a documentary realized by Weijun Chen in 2007, is part of the Why Democracy? Series

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