the role of Corporations in politics
although this is not about Thailand – this might help to graps the REALITY of the modern world, how actually politics work.
“It is not LAW – it is Policy … ”
big corporations are making money by controling politics in the countries, and most if not all the “elected” reps (as MPs) often have certain positions in big corporations.
John Harris (from http://tpuc.org/)
It’s an illusion
(from video “Lawful Rebellion” Conference , The British Constiution Group, Stoke-on-Trent, 24th January 2009)
There is no much time to make a parallel with Thailand, but just one example is as good…
For example present Thai Democrat government has a person from largest gonglomerate called CP group who is the Minister (see #5) in PM Abhisit Office – his name is Mr. Virachai Virameteekul (see my comment on BP blog back in 12th Dec 2008, another comment on 18th Dec, and 2 comments on Dec 19th and 21st; also related posts by BP about him here and here, as well as BP’s post about CP Group)
… Democrat MP Nipit Intharasombat Friday cried foul over the appointment of whom he called a funder to the Abhisit I Cabinet. Nipit said he was about to be appointed a PM’s Office minister but he was edged out by Weerachai Weeramethikul in the last minute… He suspected that Weerachai was selected for the post because he is a funder. (The Nation)
… CP group has apparently so much political influence in Thailand that it is not concerned at all that their influence is exposed…
… article about CP group on Reuters, which BTW gives a bit more details about the scale of their operations :
well, looks like Virichai’s appointment as a minister to deal with “economic matters” and 5% corporate tax cut are coming in a very appropriate time to help just a bit CP ! 😉
some 5 months later here is a latest report : “Thai CP Foods Q1 net profit up 71%, above forcast”
so, apparently appointment of Mr. Virachai into Ministerial position was very frutfull:
while country’s GDP contracts 6% in 1st Q at the same time CP’s profit grows 71% – that’s pretty cool, huh ? 😉
Thai Media naturally would never dare to critisize the political influence CP group has, because CP itself is the OWNER of many of media agencies (as True Corporation), and even in international media there is not so much, here is from Wiki :
“There has been the claim from an NGO, FTAwatch, that the Charoen Pokphand Group exercises its political power over the Thai government to change the context in the JTEPA. The text in the contract includes tax reduction for chicken, shrimp and frozen seafood that the Charoen Pokphand Group hold the substantive market share, instead of rice product that Thai farmers have competitive advantage…
… the law enforcement in Thailand is weak and the group has high level of political influence…
but of course he is immune due to the freindship … (having such a “close friend” – read there)
BTW pay attention to the former Chief Advisot of CP group and why he has resigned ! 😉
“… resigned from his position in order to distance himself from … corruption investigation of the CP group … “
Thaksin and his TRT party were also favored by CP group for a while, which greatly explains his initial political sucess (he is the ONLY Thai PM able to complete FULL 4 years term ever) and … his dowbfall; as well as present sucess of Democrat party to be able at all to form the government in Dec 2008.
“Suthep explained to them that Virachai was also instrumental in gathering support from defecting MPs for the Democrat’s bid to form the new government.”
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