The Great Rice Scandal

Posted on 2017-08-25 by Chakers in Thailand.

Yingluck Shinawatra had everything and yet she didn't know it. She made no secret of her admiration for Aung San Suu Kyi the Burma Prime Minister, hero worshipped Nelson Mandela the late President of South Africa and held Barack Obama former President of the USA in the highest esteem. Yingluck, nickname Pu, saw them as principled, leaders of the peoples, possessing no limits on the price they were willing to pay for those in poverty.

Pu swept to an inevitable victory in the 2011 Thai free election on a mandate of reducing business tax and policies to eradicate poverty especially in Isan. She had more than 20 million supporters, a third of the nation and more than half the electorate, and the full backing of two of the major parties.

This is a woman of substance and with business skills to hand. She had an empire of her own making in the private business sector, she is an entrepreneur, an investor, and a ventures mentor. She is a fixer. Her resume includes Director level appointments at AT&T, IBC (name changed to True), AIS where she was CEO, and Thaicom. This business lady commands respect so when she came up with her plan to drag rice farming out of poverty she had every confidence it would succeed.

The plan was simple, the Government instead of buying some rice would buy all the rice, then they can charge a higher price on the stock markets and thus increase the raw price which would eventually mean higher incomes for rice farmers and to raise the capital needed to pay the farmers their first instalment she would sell Government Bonds with fixed rates. That's a winner because Markets like Bonds because they are guaranteed a price at fixed intervals which makes them valuable to investors. Why?

ThGovt sells a Bond at $10 and each year it goes up $1. You buy the Bond at $10 and a year later it is worth $11 but because I could hang on to the Bond for 5 years it would be worth $16 to me so I will pay you $12 for it while ThGovt will only pay you $11. Now the ThGovt cannot buy back the Bond because its value is higher than the issue price.

Rice farmers previously would sell some of thier rice to the Gov' and some on the open market because they had a guaranteed price off the Gov' but could get a higher price on the market stalls. Now they are being told there is a compulsory purchase order on thier rice but at an even higher price than they can get from the local market and that they can have half the money up front. To be honest Pu could have told the Isan farmers they will be paid less and they would still have shouted 'Yippee' so there was zero resistance to the rice plan in the rural farming constituencies.

The only problem was a really annoying committee called the 'Department of Fiscal Accountability' chaired by the belligerent opposition leader Abhisit Vejjajiva who warned Pu formally of the high risk financial planning, which she ignored, and forced the Law through Government using Party Whips. As a result the DFA persistently referred her to the Anti-Corruption Committee which she still ignored. Her own advisers were telling her that if she does not get a higher price on the Stock Market there will be a massive deficit. In fact you needed an economy the size of Britain's to handle the trillions that it could add up to. So confident in her business acumen was Pu that she ignored them because it would mean wealthier rice farmers and rural farmers are Shinawatra supporters. Meanwhile in Britain Thai rice went up from £16.78 to £28.00 in a few weeks and World-wide people stopped buying Thai Mali Hom rice.

Six months later the Government didn't have the money to pay the farmers and dissent was soon displayed by Isan folk who also had no rice. Poor farmers who had spent their rice subsidy on pickup trucks and houses had to go to the Banks and borrow so they could put in the second yield while having their trucks and houses repossessed, business taxes went up to plug the financial hole, red shirts took to the streets to protest and yellow shirts took to the streets with guns and started shooting them. There was bombings, a Government in meltdown, civil disorder, and then the Generals said enough is enough - and that is why the country has a Junta and not a democratically elected Government.

On Radio Four today and on the BBC World Service thier reporter in Bangkok said the state of Yingluck's court proceedings is the Army's excuse to hold on to power. THIS IS UTTER GARBAGE. The Military took over to stop the civil disorder and the recent anti-Military bombing campaign is aimed at bringing down the Government and is likely being financed by her brother Thaksin in exile in Dubai. Meanwhile this Junta is asking business leaders to advise on fiscal governance and rural representatives to plan how to hand back power to an electorate. I would suggest the BBC need a SEA Political reporter who knows about Politics because this one gets his information from the Bangkok Post.

Yingluck said all along she had no affiliation with her brother and that she would stand her ground and answer the bogus charges of facilitating fraud which for the courts was a hot coal which they couldn't drop. Jail Pu and the Isan folk, the Reds, the farmers, will take to the streets and yet again people will die. If they find her innocent it will send a message to the World's stock markets that ThGovt cannot be trusted. The 6 judges of the Supreme Court who have no accountability to the Junta have concluded whether or not Pu has broken the Law and today she was to appear to hear the verdict. For the past 3 years Pu has repeated, like Mandela and Suu Kyi she will not run, no matter what the court rules she will stand against them, she has responsibilities to the people.

Today she ran away to live with her brother in Dubai. So much for being the voice of the people. Yingluck you are a coward.

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