From Thairath, April 28, 2017
Title: Same as… massage with news.
Below title: The media needs to have a professional license… the same way we need [to do it] from Thai traditional massage.
On the chair: NRSA [National Reform Steering Assembly]
On the books the man holds: Controlling media ACT; NCPO order; Secret
On the microphone: News
Mouse man: Stop saying that the media overshadows people. [meaning something like the junta is claiming that the media misleads and influences people in the wrong way]
Mouse: Think the same way as elections. [meaning something like the government to should reply on elections and elected officials to decide things]
[All of this refers to government efforts to enact a licensing rule for anyone considered providing news. In response to criticism, officials countered that even Thai massage parlors must have licenses and so the media, with its ability to influence, should be required to have a government license as well. The junta has since stated that they are dropping the licensing requirement after much public alarm.
Interestingly, the government the junta overthrew attempted the same thing. The Pheu Thai government used the flooding in Bangkok in 2011 to sneak through a late-night cabinet resolution allowing the police chief to shut any media over vague charges such as “national security and public order.” It also included the same sort of government licensing the junta is attempting now.
The proposed Pheu Thai law came after a Thaksin relative had been appointed head of the police force after a controversial and unprecedented reshuffle of officials.
The resulting publicity caused the Pheu Thai to withdraw the bill. The reshuffle was later deemed illegal by the courts and resulted in Thaksin’s sister Yingluck stepping down as prime minister.