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  1. #11
    Erudite Caveman Erudite Caveman is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by gerhard dengler View Post
    Deity like devotion is one aspect.
    But in several trips to that part of the world and from speaking to people, it's my view that there is genuine affection among the people for their sovereign.
    Based on what though? It's not like they know the man. In reality they are just fond of a cultural entity, not a person.
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  2. #12
    The Field Marshal The Field Marshal is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Polly Ticks View Post
    Despot.
    Benevolent.
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  3. #13
    Taidhg Gaelach Taidhg Gaelach is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oscurito View Post
    The news from Bangkok as to the health of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej is getting increasingly grim. His Majesty has not been seen in public in months and has spent the last several weeks battling a series of illnesses in the city's Siriraj Hospital.

    The King's son, Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, the heir apparent abruptly cancelled an engagement on Wednesday afternoon and arranged an emergency meeting with the country's prime minister, Prayuth Chan-ocha.

    Meanwhile, thousands of the King's subjects are gathering outside the hospital fearing the worst but praying for the best. The crowds are wearing yellow and pink; yellow to represent the King and pink as a colour to promote good health and recovery. As the world's longest reigning monarch, his passing would mark a major watershed in Thai, Asian and world history.

    It's difficult for westerners to understand the relationship between the Thai king and his subjects. He's far more than a mere constitutional monarch such as we see in the Netherlands or Sweden. In many ways, he defines what the Thai nation is and represents - even superseding the democratic will at times and we have seen examples of this in the last few years when the Thai military intervened to defend the status quo from democratically elected governments.

    The nearest analogy I can think of is the traditional Catholic view of the Pope. It doesn't matter what the majority of Catholics think. The leader is supreme.

    Sydney Morning Herald: Emergency meeting called as Thais pray for king's 'unstable' health
    I wish him well. A good king is infinitely better than a bad democratic régime (and all democratic régimes are bad).
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  4. #14
    Taidhg Gaelach Taidhg Gaelach is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oscurito View Post
    He's one of the old-school monarchs: serious, self-effacing, very dignified in public, restrained to the point of completely subverting his own personality. He's led his country through some incredible crises and sometimes was the only point of unity around whom all Thais could congregate.

    People speak of the privilege of royalty but they often forget the weight of responsibility which is much harder to express, never mind justify - being based on something far more ethereal than a majority of votes in an election.
    I have the utmost respect for His Imperial Highness the Emperor of Japan. He is of pure Japanese blood, and he married a lady of pure blood, thus reminding all Japanese people of their noble heritage and their duty to the future. No doubt, that is why they have not allowed themselves to be swamped with mass immigration.
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  5. #15
    Dub01 Dub01 is offline

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    How many coups did he order over the years?
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  6. #16
    TheKing TheKing is offline
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    People stop it,

    no need to pray for, but all the same thanks.
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  7. #17
    petaljam petaljam is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oscurito View Post
    The news from Bangkok as to the health of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej is getting increasingly grim. His Majesty has not been seen in public in months and has spent the last several weeks battling a series of illnesses in the city's Siriraj Hospital.

    The King's son, Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, the heir apparent abruptly cancelled an engagement on Wednesday afternoon and arranged an emergency meeting with the country's prime minister, Prayuth Chan-ocha.

    Meanwhile, thousands of the King's subjects are gathering outside the hospital fearing the worst but praying for the best. The crowds are wearing yellow and pink; yellow to represent the King and pink as a colour to promote good health and recovery. As the world's longest reigning monarch, his passing would mark a major watershed in Thai, Asian and world history.

    It's difficult for westerners to understand the relationship between the Thai king and his subjects. He's far more than a mere constitutional monarch such as we see in the Netherlands or Sweden. In many ways, he defines what the Thai nation is and represents - even superseding the democratic will at times and we have seen examples of this in the last few years when the Thai military intervened to defend the status quo from democratically elected governments.

    The nearest analogy I can think of is the traditional Catholic view of the Pope. It doesn't matter what the majority of Catholics think. The leader is supreme.

    Sydney Morning Herald: Emergency meeting called as Thais pray for king's 'unstable' health
    I thought the problem was that the heir is almost as unpopular as the king is loved. If so, why would that change when he becomes king?
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  8. #18
    Ratio Et Fides Ratio Et Fides is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by Taidhg Gaelach View Post
    I wish him well. A good king is infinitely better than a bad democratic régime (and all democratic régimes are bad).
    Two of the worst things about things about our current set up here in the West are disrespect for the past (which easily turns into disrespect for the elderly) and connected to it an almost pathological "short termism", two things exactly that a Monarch who in any way really manifests the "Archtype" of Monarchy undermines. I for one will also be praying for his Majesty.
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  9. #19
    gerhard dengler gerhard dengler is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erudite Caveman View Post
    Based on what though? It's not like they know the man. In reality they are just fond of a cultural entity, not a person.
    In my opinion, their esteem for their King is based on the fact that his personal behaviour appears to be beyond reproach.

    I've been told that in his public speeches the King stress values such as compassion, mutual wellbeing of citizens, honesty, respecting the rule of law, equality and righteousness, integrity. And that his personal behaviour actually conforms to all of these virtues.

    I've also been told that the monarch is a unifying force who the people look too. He's above politics and this independence is highly respected by the people of Thailand. These are the views of the local people who I've spoken to over there (in an earlier life, the sector I worked in did a lot of work in that region of the world, so it's somewhere where I've had a lot of dealings with during that time).
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  10. #20
    Oscurito Oscurito is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by petaljam View Post
    I thought the problem was that the heir is almost as unpopular as the king is loved. If so, why would that change when he becomes king?
    The death of the current king would be mourned anyway. As to the Crown Prince, I don't think it's correct to say that he's loathed as much as the current king is loved. He's less loved, certainly. Some of this is due to the activities of his third wife and her family.

    He has close ties to Thaksin Shinawatra so it's not unreasonable to assume that he has some support amongst the red shirts although that would count as a huge negative amongst the urban elites.

    He may be more of a polarising figure. To be honest, while your question makes it sound like I've taken a strong position on him, I actually avoided any substantive comment on him because it's difficult to know what the reaction of Thai society will be.
    Last edited by Oscurito; 12th October 2016 at 05:33 PM.
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