Taoist mythology, Lanna history, mythology, the nature of time and other considered ramblings

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Location: Chiangrai, Chiangrai, Thailand

Author of many self-published books, including several about Thailand and Chiang Rai, Joel Barlow lived in Bangkok 1964-65, attending 6th grade with the International School of Bangkok's only Thai teacher. He first visited ChiangRai in 1988, and moved there in 1998.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Will the economic debacle, travesty or fiasco (it doesn’t seem to have a fixed name yet) turn Iceland into an economic colony of Great Britain? Is the swine flu going to reduce Mexico to a colony of the USA? Surely the people of both countries will vehemently resist (as they certainly should), but one must wonder about the power of forces at work: ‘our’ commercially dictated media, globalization, the IMF, die-hard chauvinists for “American Empire” and maybe even shape-shifting aliens… or people with lizard-like souls, anyway…
On Thai TV I saw a long line of national ‘leaders’ holding hands in a show of solidarity – and what I saw was performers, not decision-makers, employees rather than managers, and most particularly, actors instead of directors. Perhaps the real directors fear that exposure of their true role would put them at too much risk? Or maybe it’s just easier, working privately.
It’s hard to separate wheat from chaff anymore – one can know that Afghanis doesn’t actually like US military presence in their country, no matter what is said in the “news”… and that buying Afghani opium would make much, much more sense than trying to ‘eradicate’ it violently, as per new policy, but I for one cannot figure why the US central administration seems to want to promote recruitment for extremist fundamentalist militant groups, but see clearly that current policy certainly does that.
We need enemies like we need more wounds – what with the serious problems staring us directly in the face, and urgent deadlines to deal with them within.
I wonder, too, why have major media moguls have become so set on denigrating the Thai monarchy? Because of the King’s preaching on the wisdom of a sufficiency economy? That Taksin was popularly elected and Apisit not, gets repeated sufficiently to rival Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction – regardless that Taksin bought votes from a gullible and basically disenfranchised public and that Apiset gained office in the usual way (like in the USA, electors are popularly elected, and not the central figure of government… witness the two ‘elections’ of George W. Bush!).
It’s hard not to wonder at the extent of clandestine manipulations… we know they’ve always gone on, and will continue, but I for one certainly believe that they should be fought. Were a hidden oligarchy manipulating us for our own good, I might feel otherwise, but to me Monsanto is more evil than war, pollution and climate change very real dire threats, and promotion of polite inhibitions as the central core of ethical morality simply insidious – just form and appearance, with little substance or meaning, as per a long history of injustice. We must deal with under-subsistence-level wage-slavery, the evils of drug rackets both ‘legitimate’ and not, overpopulation and under-education: among other serious real enemies to fight, and perhaps dragons about to slay us all (including those ‘leaders’ in hiding, and our various kinds of media stars). “Revenge is mine” sayeth the Lord.