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» Since the launching of the rice-pawning scheme a few months ago ("pawning" is not only a correct translation of the Thai word jam nam but also reflects the sense of the scheme better than the "pledging" that many writers have used), two areas have been analysed most thoroughly: its potential impact on the budget and national debt, resulting from the large losses that will occur, and the corruption that is due to happen at various steps of the scheme. Some analysts go so far as to say that losses from this scheme will bankrupt the country and pawning rice is tantamount to pawning the country.
» Ask any of the participants in the massive anti-government rallies about their purpose, and the answer is likely to be to get rid of something called "Thaksinocracy". When asked what it means, the answer varies, but may be roughly grouped along these five "cracies".
» We are presumably more than half done with yet another constitution. Not counting the temporary ones issued after the many coup d'etats, this will be the 17th since absolute monarchy was abolished in 1932. Debates have been raging whether the new constitution will — finally — help Thailand reach its goal of being governed by democratic principles. I think not, for these reasons.
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