Stars in Thailand


From Thairath, February 26, 2017
Title: NASA found 7 dao [stars] orbiting Thailand [this uses wordplay to comment on recent events that involve a variation of the Thai word for star.]

Top left: Daoreuang [Marigold]
[Refers to Dhammakaya’s past pilgrimage though downtown Bangkok. It disrupted traffic and was seen as a demonstration of the chaos the sect could cuase if it was pressured. Along the way of their pilgrimage, their followers spread marigolds on the road as the carpet for Dhammakaya’s monks to walk on as they believe the marigold refers to the riches and wealth.]

Top middle: Daotok [Shooting star]
On the shooting star: Rolls-Royce bribery
[Refers to the Rolls-Royce bribery which is thought to involve many former politicians, particularly during Thaksin and Yingluck’s administrations, as well as executives of Thai Airways and PTT companies.]

Top middle right: Daoyour [Temptress]
[Not sure about this one. Perhaps refers to recent foreign reports about Pattaya being a city of prostitution. It also perhaps shows junta attempts to tempt opposing political groups to sign a binding reconciliation pact.]

Top right: Daokhro [planet]
[Refers to the police who are always criticized for trying to catch a scapegoat instead of the real perpetrator of a crime. This caption plays with Thai word “khro” meaning “getting into trouble.” However, when it combines with the word “dao” it means means “planet.”]

Bottom left: Daohang [comet]
[We are not sure of the connection here, it implies that bad politicians are in parliament and that they are water monitors. To refer to someone as this kind of lizard is an insult. The word “hang” in Thai means “tail.” More about the tiger-lion-bull-rhinoceros reference.]

Bottom middle: Daolukkai [Pleiades]
On the sleeve: Fuel price
[Refers to Thai idiom “a chicken in one’s hand” meaning as “in the palm of one’s hand.” This refers to the fuel price–which is thought to be manipulated by powerful groups for their benefit. The word “lukkai” means “chicken.”]

Bottom right: Daorung [Rising star]
[Refers to recent foreign reports about Pattaya being a city of prostitution.]

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