Introduction: talking democracy
DOI link for Introduction: talking democracy
Introduction: talking democracy book
Sometime ago the late Kukrit Pramoj, one-time Prime Minister and wit, observed that ‘The Swiss do not talk about democracy or politics at all, but they have democracy. The Thais on the other hand talk about democracy and their own politics non-stop, but they haven’t got democracy just the same.’1 Kukrit’s aside highlights a fascinating aspect of Thai political discourse: the existence of an endless inquiry into the meaning and status of Thai democracy against a background of Brahman divinity in the Chakri Court, acts of seemingly compulsive vote-buying by politicians, and coups d’état by military cliques, seemingly ‘in accordance’ with the ‘general will’ of the people.