The elections were only five days ago and it already seems like a weird dream. The newspapers are running news again instead of articles about a candidate’s favorite restaurants or what’s on their night stand, people have resumed wearing red and yellow shirts without making bold political statements, and the 8ft tall election posters that blanketed the city have all vanished without a trace. I wanna talk more about these posters because they really are ridiculous. Instead of a small card saying “Elect So-and-so” in some red/white/blue scheme staked in the lawn, Thailand instead opts for larger than life posters on cheap wooden frames placed anywhere there’s a pole or a tree to tie them to. Literally anywhere. I had planned to take some pictures of some of my favorites to share with you but there was some kind of massive, massive clean-up on the night of the 3rd and there’s hardly a trace that they were even there. Here’s a couple I pulled off the internet.
We’ll start with the victorious candidate. This is a typical poster for Yingluck Shiniwatra and her Pheu Thai party. The numbers assigned to the parties are based on some kind of random ping-pong ball machine like the lottery which gathers lots of attention (Thais can really get into lucky/unlucky numbers).
Here’s former Prime Minister Abhiset. You had a good run?
This was my favorite candidate. Apparently he runs every year as somewhat of a joke. He campaigned with the message “enough with corruption in government!” He made his millions as a sleazy massage parlor tycoon. He’s a member of parliament now.
This series of posters created a stir.They have a variety of creatures on them and they basically say “No animals in government” and were directly targeted at members of the Pheu Thai party. Calling someone an animal here, especially a dog or buffalo is a pretty serious insult so this shocked even me.
Here's an idea of how ubiquitous these posters were. During the final week before elections it really approached critical mass. It actually got difficult to find somewhere to cross the street.
That's the story from over here. Hope all's well back home and you're all enjoying the summer.