22 September, 2006

FunkyPix2's Enduring Tribute to Steve Irwin

Thanks to Steve Derwin, many more recruits are learning that it's OK to use animals & children for Entertainment and Profit. Is the use of a powerless baby as a circus prop really much different from parading an abused child as a 'dolled-up' beauty queen? Arguably, might it be even worse? The baby would have even less say in the matter.

Is this Guantanamo, Koala-Torture Dept? Check out the alarm expressed by the body-language of the koalas - obviously caused by the mere presence of the croc. The koalas don't know that the croc has probably just been fed and/or tranquilised. Hey, is this really any different in principle from using attack dogs to intimidate prisoners at Abu Grahaib?


FunkyPix2 humbly suggests that Shane Warne don the khakis and apply for the vacant position instead of retiring. ASAP. !

...and here's Irwin's competitor in Beijing: he nose a trick or two. Not to be outdone, Steve was secretly practising the same stunt with swamp pythons... one in each nostril.

To round off our little tribute, watch this short flash animated cartoon by Nicholson of ‘The Australian’. It's quick to load, then afterwards simply click out and you'll come straight back to your beloved FunkyPix2.

The USA's response to the coup: Threaten Thailand with Sanctions.

Sure, the USA can go (away)... as far as it likes.
We're with Chavez and the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

The american empire again demonstrates its lofty vision and intelligence (if you'll excuse the phrase).

No further comment is necessary from the editorial team at FunkyPix2.

Now it's your turn...¤ click on Comments.

A Thai farmer searches the skies for Thaksin's personal jet to re-appear

A patient (and poor) Thai farmer waits for her billionaire Liberator.

The significance of this photo probably escapes Australian politicians.

Godot never had it as good as Thaksin. We reckon that a few of Thailand's debt-ridden farmers might still be waiting for Thaksin's promised debt relief outside government house in Bangkok. As FunkyPix2 predicted, there will likely be growing resentment among farmers who are realising that they were led up the garden path by Thaksin's vacuous promises.

Having said that, I read an article today reporting one die-hard farmer as saying (with a toothy grin): "Come back, Mr Thaksin, we'll vote for you." Huh? Look. The Second Coming's not gunna happen. Thaksin has said so himself (although you can't trust him further than you could kick him). Thailand's King has already endorsed the leaders of the coup, who have undertaken to return the reins of power to a nominated civilian PM within 2 weeks. Nominations are happening as we go to press, and the King's approval of such a leader will certainly be sought. The opinion of the King is the ultimate guide and arbiter here... things are securely back on track in the Land-of-Smiles, even though the expected US and Australian 'Trial-by-Tabloid' accusations drone on.

21 September, 2006

Dubya Ducklips condemns Thai coup

Today on ABC-AsiaPacific cable TV, we listened to Australia's Howard (and his toad-faced side-kick Downer) contemptuously condemn the coup in Thailand. The disdainful look on their "I've-just-sucked-a-lemon" faces said it all. I felt a deep sense of outrage on behalf of our Thai friends and hosts. Hey, what right does Howard have to publically criticise the internal affairs of another sovereign country? Freedom of speech? No, not when it's likely to be offensive: just ask any Muslim. (Read Howard's comments here).

Not in our name, Johhny Dubya Ducklips. With respect (...sir), go and shit in your own nest.

To the Thais around us, Howard's euro-centric sound-bites certainly come over as the preaching of a self-righteous regional "deputy sherrif". Howard conveniently neglected to acknowledge that this coup has been quickly endorsed by Thailand's revered King... so shouldn't that be the end of the matter? To continue to bleat such propaganda-oriented criticism is utterly disrespectful to the Thai King: FunkyPix2 demands an apology from the Australian government. Get back to looking after your own blemish-free model democracy, Johnny B-Goad. Your unhelpful comments were obviously designed for home-consumption on the Channel 9 News.

"Democracy" is only a vague, imprecise ideal. It is also extremely culture-sensitive and is therefore inherently fragile. If Democracy is to become a country's chosen path, it must necessarily be adapted to the culture, history and circumstances of that country: one size cannot possibly fit all, as Bully-Bush and Henchman-Howard arrogantly choose to assume in their unconscious xenophobia. (See this article by Jonathan Steele (Guardian Unlimited) on the variable personalities of Democracy.)

Thailand has done the Right Thing in its present circumstances. The gutting and re-fitting of the Thai Constitution over the next year will result in a strengthening and growth in the character of Thailand, more so than many self-satisfied but stale western democracies. There's plenty of corruption at high levels in the west, too - it's just that they've had enough opportunity to learn how to conceal their tracks better: they've worked under their own rules and loopholes for a longer time: witness Oil-for-Food, Enron, Poseidon, Australian Wheat Board bribes, blah blah blah.....

Hey, wake up Australians. Dump Johnny Dubya Ducklips A.S.A.P: he's even more pernicious to your society than Thaksin was in Thailand. At least Thaksin was honestly dishonest. Honest John isn't: he merely camouflages it better by appealing to base-level greed and fear. Don't be suckers just because he looks like Everybody's Grandpa, wholesome as brown bread etc.

FunkyPix2 puts more faith in ex-Ambassadors, and especially sacked ones, than in current ones. Ex- or sacked ambassadors are more likely to Tell The Truth. For instance, check this:

Former British Ambassador to Thailand , Derek Tonkin, has expressed his support for the coup, suggesting the ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is to blame for fostering conditions that led to his ouster.
In a letter to London-based The Times newspaper, published on September 25, Tonkin said Thaksin's "wealth has become so immense and has been used so shamelessly to undermine political opponents and critics that his position has become virtually unassailable through the ballot box."
His letter, published on September 25, was in response to The Times' leading article on September 20 in which it stated Thaksin's record "does not justify an illegal attempt to force him from power".


20 September, 2006

Finally, Thailand has got the coup d’etat it so urgently needed

"Thai a Yellow Ribbon..." The yellow armband worn by
Thai soldiers proclaims their allegiance to the King.

A year or so ago, Thailand’s government bartered their massive stockpiles of ageing dried longans to China in exchange for a number of secondhand Chinese tanks (a longan is a fruit somewhat like a small, dry-ish lychee with a hint of rosewater). Last night, the dried longans got their revenge on Prime Monster Thaksin… it may have been some of those very tanks which helped carry off the politest political "coup-de-grace" in history; finally Thugsin is GONE [cheers]. It's no secret that he's been shipping out his personal effects to London for weeks now (60+ suitcases just for him, let alone his wife who has allegedly fled to Singapore - but have your justified doubts). There's also the matter of the whereabouts of nearly $2 Billion US dollars accumulated mainly while he was in office... Does the name 'Marcos' ring a bell?

Ironies abound in this saga. It was Thailand’s impoverished farmers who grew masses of longans at the government’s behest. Then (surprise surprise) the price of longans fell through the floor, sending farmers into a belt-tightening spin. PM Toxin glibly promised them debt relief – and as predicted, none ever arrived. The farmers never recognized - and still don’t - that Thaksin habitually shoots off the first loose-cannon thought that comes into his mind. You know, ‘it-seemed-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time’. For instance, his crazy ‘Million Cows’ Scheme… a sort of Community "Cow Bank". It never happened either: farmers never got their loaned cow – just a bum steer.

And Thaksin’s 30-Baht Scheme (30-baht subsidized visits to a GP) actually was a fine idea, but its funding was dreadfully - hopelessly - under-budgeted. As it happens, the amount of capital-gains tax revenue which Thaksin avoided when he sold his Shin Corporation to Singapore would have gone a long way towards funding Thailand’s entire 30-baht Scheme... and still could, if the Thais can get their hands on it. Note that Thailand has a population more than three times that of Australia. Read about the original scam in FunkyPix Volume 1, page 47; "Eradicating Corruption is like trying to “plough the sea".

And did you know that Thaksin holds a
Doctorate in Criminal Justice (lol) from a two-bit university in Texas (of all places!). No wonder he has such good rapport with Georgie the Global Village Idiot.

But I digress... Regards the coup, all is well at the local level here in northern Thailand. Not a tank in sight, not even a tiny rocket-launcher mounted on a tuk-tuk. Many Thai people appear far more relaxed than yesterday… more laughing and joking happening. Despite Chiangmai being Thaksin’s ‘home turf’, his demise is generally recognized as long overdue. Things will recover soon enough. Am I happy with where we live? Yes Siam, there’s nowhere else like it. Now I’m off to tuck into a yumacious Phad Phet Gai. Cheers.
There's a brief article in buzzle.com describing some of Dr. Thaksin's dubious deeds here.

18 September, 2006

Used monkey for sale. Low mileage.

This villager, Pinij Perin, featured recently in the (English language) Nation newspaper in Thailand. He is an example of many in the Thai coconut industry who are suffering from competition by multi-national business. Perin and many others are being forced to sell their palm-climbing monkeys because there is falling demand for traditional coconut-fibre pillows. These days, Thais are opting for softer and cheaper imported polyester-filled pillows from international chain-stores. Canned coconut milk is also out-selling the fresh product. Kuhn Pinij can no longer afford to feed his working monkey with all the fruit it requires daily.

There is currently a lot of resentment and active militancy against multi-national chain-stores and supermarkets like Tesco-Lotus and Big-C. There have been organized protests and a push in the media to save small local shops from suffocation. So much so that the populist Thaksin government, faced with an election towards the end of the year, has actually cancelled all new building by Lotus and others… as well as (get this!) cancelling existing building permits! This typical knee-jerk descision has resulted in a number of stores being abandoned half-built, and their construction workers suddenly retrenched. (Potential investors unfamiliar with Thailand's methods might view that somewhat dimly, methinks?)

Oddly, company managements haven’t made a fuss at all. Why? They understand the game-plan: as soon as the pesky election is over, the Rules will return to normal: the government will quietly relent on the contracts - workers will return to their construction jobs - and local shops will be back under financial pressure again. The sacrificial pawns in the power game - as usual - are the construction workers on 181 baht (AU$7) per day, who presumably can be expected to staple their families’ stomachs till the end of the year. Why don’t the workers matter as much as the shop owners? Because they’re mostly Burmese ‘guest workers’ with no voting rights. Thai construction companies exploit them because there is no union to lobby for foreign workers. These poor workers are herded, standing like vertical sardines, on cattle trucks from their company ghetto to and from the work-site.

The Nation newspaper is more centrist and critical of the Thaksin government than the pandering and right-leaning Bangkok Post (whose hero and unofficial patron is PM Thaksin). The Nation also published a photo of protesting shop-owners with red banners, whereas the Bangkok Post was stubbornly mute ...rather like the proverbial Three Monkeys.

By way of footnote, the label on the mattress in our spare bedroom has a subtitle below the Brand which reads: "Super-hard mattress suitable for the Eastern people". U-huh. Things might be changing, though...

16 September, 2006

More Astrology and Black Magic by Thaksin

You may recall from the first volume of Funky Pix (Vol.1, page 50) the photo of Thailand’s rapacious Prime Minister Thaksin rushing off to Burma to secure a dodgy gas deal for Thailand …then secretly awarding the supply contract to one of his own companies.

Well, big business isn’t the only reason he goes to Burma. While he’s there, he sometimes has a visitation by ET.

E-Thi is a disabled Burmese woman, an astrologer upon whose advice Thaksin bases many of his decisions. E-Thi’s speech impediment makes her suggestions incomprehensible, but her sister conveniently translates the blurry prognostications. (Hmm, reminds me of the Oracle at Delphi in ancient Greece…) Apparently, E-Thi once correctly mentioned a sequence of numbers on a banknote in his pocket, and ever since then she’s been a celeb. She gets whisked to Bangkok periodically (in a government plane, no doubt) to assist Thaksin in making political decisions. It’s an open secret that Thaksin relies heavily on astrology from Burma, as well as Black Magic from exponents in Cambodia. E-Thi is also sought after by the First Couple of Burma’s ruling military Junta – Senior General Than Shwe and his wife Kyaing Kyaing - according to the latest issue of The Irrawaddy.

In the nineties, Thai military generals made a secret trip to Rangoon to consult an astrologer, making a large donation to a temple as part of the deal. They were instructed not to touch the earth on their way back to Bangkok… so they carefully walked on red carpets, took aircraft and were driven in a convoy of government limosines, windows blacked out as usual.

10 September, 2006

*Grand Opening* of Funky Pix 2

ANNOUNCING the All-new, carb-free

Funky Pix 2 !!! (...hearty applause)

I know you've all been SO excited by the first volume of Funky Pix, but WOW! ZAP! ...volume 2 is going to absolutely THRILL your socks off! (see photo).

The difference here is that the newest items appear at the TOP when you first open the website, so it's mega-easy 4u to catch up with all our Adventures-in-Thai-Wonderland.

But wait !! There's MORE !! This time you get the opportunity to make comments. Make them nice, though... I cry easily.

More excitement COMING SOON to a small screen near YOU!
Why not add us to your "Bookmarks" or 'Favourites"?

Volume ONE is still available at this 6link:


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