Critics throw the book at PM

Bookworms fed up with pro-Thaksin Shinawatra tomes finally have an alternative.
"Roo Tan Thaksin" (Stay One Step Ahead of Thaksin), a Thai-language compilation by 14 critics of the prime minister, has its launch today.
"These days, nothing is worthier than to understand how Thaksin manages his power to benefit himself," outspoken senator and the book's editor, Chermsak Pinthong, writes in the preface.
He says the book will help the people get a "true picture".


"The government and the opposition should thank us if they read it for showing what is really happening in the country."
The book's contributors include Thirayuth Boonmi, Sulak Sivaraksa, Somkiat Tangkitwanich, Kasem Sirisamphan, Prawese Wasi and Pasuk Pongpaichit.
Thirayuth criticises Thaksin's Thai Rak Thai Party for failing to clean up its own backyard. He blames the government for failing to deal with corrupt businesses with links to key Thai Rak Thai figures.

Somkiat urges the public to keep an eye on government policy-making as it always serves the interests of groups that support the administration. The rest of the country is left behind without a hope, he writes.
He accuses Thaksin's spouse, Pojaman, of wielding too much influence over her husband.
"We cannot let the wife of our leader do his job. Otherwise, we will all end up bankrupt."

New Words and Phrases

bookworms: noun, people who like to read
to be fed up: to be tired of something and not willing to accept it anymore
tomes: noun, books
compilation: noun, a collection of short stories or essays
failing to clean up its own backyard: not keeping things nice22/07/47 19:54:45 .
to keep an eye on government policy-making: to look closely at the decisions that the government makes

Poll raises questions about our honesty

Thais are the worst when it comes to exaggerating on resumes to get a job but prefer to keep their lips tight if they spot friends cheating on lovers, according to an Asia-wide honesty test by Reader's Digest magazine.

More than 1,600 people in nine Asian areas, including Thailand, were confronted with 10 everyday dilemmas to test their sense of right and wrong.

Thais were found to retain their honesty in three out of 10 situations.
When finding a wallet with Bt2,000 and the identity of its owner, 96 per cent of Thais, equal to Indians and Indonesians, insisted that they would return it to the owner, although some preferred keeping the cash as a reward. The average is 85 per cent for Asians.
If they saw shoplifting in a department store, 73 per cent of Thais opted for informing security guards despite several being in doubt about their safety or the risk of assault in revenge. The average for the region is 64 per cent, except the Philippines, where it was 82 per cent.
The results of the other seven cases indicate that Thais are either reluctant or unable to maintain their honesty under some circumstances.
When the opportunity arises, 35 per cent admitted they would conceal income to evade tax. The average for the region is higher at 38 per cent with Malaysians ranking first with 55 per cent.
Office stationery is quite safe in Thailand. Only 23 per cent thought about taking some home for their personal use. This was lower than the region's average of 29 per cent.
But the line "always be honest with the persons you love" seems not relevant to Thais. Less than half, or 41 per cent, would tell their friends if they saw the friend's lover having a romantic dinner with someone else. The percentage was also lower than the average for this region at 44 per cent.

Unfortunately, Thais took the region's top spot at 39 per cent for partially making up or exaggerating on a resume to get a job. The average was only 30 per cent.
The results appear in the April issue of Sansara, as well as other Asian editions. The quiz was carried out by researchers in shopping malls in Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand.

New Words

exaggerating on resumes: making themselves look better for job applications
to keep their lips tight: to remain quiet; to not tell somebody something
everyday dilemmas: common ethical problems
to opt: to decide
reluctant: adj, hesitant to do something
conceal income to evade tax: to hide money from the government so that you don't have to pay taxes on it


Now that you understand the news story, answer the following 10 comprehension questions

1. Who released the new book about Thaksin?

1.Book worms
2.Thai Rak Thai
3.Critics
4.Compilation

2. The people who wrote the book ..like Thaksin

1.don't like many of the things

2.Thaksin has done
3.don't know Thaksin
4.can't read

3. What is the "true picture"that Chermsak is talking about?

1.The history of Thailand
2.The history of Phad Thai
3.The history of the world
4.The history of Thaksin's administration

4. According to Thirayuth, there are many ...

1.companies that benefit from their relationship to Thaksin
2.people who like Somtam
3.policymakers
4.support groups

5. Somkiat says Thaksin's wife has too much ...

1.mascara
2.to eat
3.to worry about
4.influence

6. How many people were included in the survey?

1. 500
2. 1,600
3. 2,000
4. 2,023

7. Roughly, ... of Thais would return a wallet and money to its owner.

1. 10 per cent
2. 30 per cent
3. 73 per cent
4. almost all

8. According to the story, out of 10 ethical dilemmas, in how many will Thais act honestly?

1.One
2.three
3.seven
4. 10

9. If your friend saw you eating a romantic dinner with someone besides your boy/girlfriend, your friend would probably ...

1.be shocked
2.be lonely
3.tell your boy/girlfriend
4.none of the above

10. What might be something that someone would exaggerate about on his resume?

1.Being in jail
2.Having bad breath
3.Working at a job he never had
4.all of the above