The Junta bulldozes the environment

160317thairathsia

From Thairath, March 17, 2016
Title: Do it in a special way
On the tractor: Section 44
On boxes (coffins?) at left: EIA after the process; Investor; Build first
The tractor is sweeping papers that read: law; environment; nature conservation
Mouse man: Like to use special methods
Mouse: Fainted [meaning he faints from surprise that Prayuth is not listening to the people before taking action]

[This refers to the extremely controversial use of the junta’s absolute power under Section 44. Recently it has been used to override environmental protection regulations that have been holding up major manufacturing projects in the provinces. These projects often cause severe pollution and are backed by tycoons with the clout to bully local communities in the area. Environmental protection measures have been lauded as a way to ensure local communities are not devastated by slash and burn capitalists.
Activists who have protested these projects and worked for environmental protection regulations are the real left-wing reformers of Thailand (as opposed to the Red Shirts who ultimately serve as political muscle for a single family). Prayuth’s use of Section 44 to green light these projects has the potential to rouse real grassroots ire and disaffection far outside Thaksin’s Red Shirts.
Here Prayuth is shown building a road without listening to complaints. This symbolizes his use of Section 44 to bypass environmental impact reports.]

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