The last five years have proved that Vint Chavala is right. The military did “put Thailand back on track”. Five years ago it was a failed state, but under military control since 2014, Thailand has enjoyed the most peace and stability since before absolute monarchy ended in 1932.
There was no democracy before 1932, so there was no need for a constitution or public voting. Without accountability under the law and no enforcement of the law, there is no democracy. History suggests that Thailand is more secure under some form of benign dictatorship rather than a fake, ineffectual democracy.
Democracy cannot be imposed. It has to evolve. In Britain, 1215 saw the Magna Carta – the first attempt to take power away from the kings. In 1642 the struggle to establish democracy resulted in war between parliamentarians and the royalists. On June 23, 2016, the British voted to leave the European Union. Parliament passed a statute confirming, in law, that the people’s desire would be enacted on March 29, 2019, at 11pm. Then Parliament flouted its own law and decided to ignore the people and remain in the EU. The UK is currently in its second civil war, albeit non-military.
So, even when it has been established for centuries, what value has democracy? Common sense suggests that Thailand should forget the elusive fantasy that is democracy and stick with the military for stability and peace.