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Get us back on track

Re: "Too expensive to ride," (Life, Feb 16).

Bangkok will never succeed in getting a significant percentage of commuters to use its trains if fares are not reduced significantly. The only way this can be done is through subsidies. Few, if any, mass transit systems in the world are successful without reducing fares to levels that are affordable to average commuters.

Thailand has allocated massive subsidies to first-time car buyers, rice and cassava farmers, rubber tappers, sugar producers, power generation, fossil fuels, cooking gas, household electricity, roads, educational scholarships, the tourism sector, industrialists starting new businesses, and more. Many of these subsidies run counter to the goal of increasing the use of trains. Getting more commuters out of their cars would benefit all Bangkokians by reducing the hours wasted in traffic and cutting the deadly levels of PM2.5 pollution.

Samanea Saman

Uncaring officials

Re: "Govt relief causes 'havoc,''' (Editorial, Feb 17).

Now Thais can appreciate what we foreigners have to go through when dealing with immigration. Incompetence, ineptitude and uncaring officials who often seem to enjoy making others miserable. Thailand needs a government that cares about and works for the benefit of the people. The Thai military sure aren't it, and neither is the PPRP.


Tree butchers

Re: "Capital needs a new approach to tree surgery," (Opinion, Feb 17).

Very few tree surgeons here are properly trained. I've had several people who "know what they are doing" trim and prune my trees. They weren't trimmed or pruned as such, more like butchered


I'm going to pot

Maybe it's just me but I was left scratching my head as to the legality of my sickly marijuana plant after reading "Dept promotes legal pot uses," (BP, Feb 16).

Exhibit A. "Members of the public are now free to use parts of the cannabis plant that aren't prohibited under the Narcotics Act."

Exhibit B. "The flowers and seeds of the cannabis plant are still classified as narcotics."

The minister added: "Cannabis-based products can be freely produced and used in households."

It was also reported that 2,500 households across Thailand have been approved (on what basis?) to grow six plants each for private use, and I'm sure most of us are none the wiser as to exactly what is the current legality of private marijuana use in Thailand.

Ray Ban

Boys and their 'toys'

Re: "Iran: Yet another nuclear bungle?" (Opinion, Feb 17).

Excellent comparison! How often do we see "leaders" do the equivalent of taking their toys and going home. It's just that these "toys" have so many consequences. You especially see it when they lock up people up because they criticise them. Then the tantrums really begin.


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