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Not a weed pioneer

Re: "Let's clear up ganja haze," (Editorial, June 17).

Are efforts really being made in Thailand to make the cannabis issue clear?

Thailand is not a pioneer in making cannabis legal. If Thailand wants, it can benefit from the experiences of other countries with years of legalised cannabis. No one reinvents the wheel. Why do it with marijuana? All the research necessary has been done and it's accessible.

Secondly, marijuana became illegal in Thailand in 1935. But it's been a part of Thai culture for centuries and people in rural areas have continued to grow and use it, despite the prohibition.

Is the present debate a misinformation campaign from the alcoholic beverage industry/other interests? Misinformation is often used to make people afraid. Cannabis, like alcohol, needs to be regulated and those regulations enforced.

The recent incident at the TV station is a case in point. Employees are not allowed to come to work drunk and the same should apply to cannabis. However, the "staggering" part of the report is very dubious; it is, however, characteristic of cannabis-laced with other illegal substances such as "angel dust" (phencyclidine). Alcohol, too, can and is adulterated with date rape drugs and with scopolamine in South America.

How many more countries need to legalise cannabis before the "haze gets cleared" in Thailand? Walking along the riverfront in Phnom Penh, I've seen restaurants serving "happy pizzas". It's illegal in Cambodia but apparently the law isn't enforced.

Bruno Sapienza


Confusion and chaos

Re: "Experts raise cannabis concerns," (BP, June 12) and "Anutin defends pot decriminalisation," (BP, June 15).

It's ludicrous for anyone to pretend that cannabis will be used solely for health and medical purposes now that it has been decriminalised in the kingdom. And, it's more than a bit late to now attempt to spin the fairy tale that there will be a plan to build an understanding that cannabis is not for recreational purposes.

The proverbial horses have clearly bolted the stable and are already frolicking in the weed pasture. Confusion and chaos are the order of the day.

Most people acknowledge that cannabis can be used by individuals without serious adverse impacts, within reasonable boundaries. But, most would also recognise that stoned individuals should not be allowed to operate motor vehicles or dangerous machinery and that being high on weed is not conducive to good study habits of students.

Decriminalising cannabis without first putting in place basic regulations to safeguard society from misuse falls significantly short of responsible governance.

Samanea Saman


'When I grew pot'

Re: "Weed now listed as a controlled herb remedy," (BP, June 17).

I've grown cannabis, on and off, for a half-century. I grew it to sell, though more often than not, things didn't work out due to rip-offs, police, and gophers. I smoked the stuff in high school but never enjoyed the high, and haven't taken a toke since 1969, age 17. Does it make people dough-headed? I think so.

However, it doesn't contribute to rapes, traffic injuries or bar-room brawls one ten-thousandth as much as alcoholic drinks. Where do I get my statistics, you might ask. I get stats/opinions from being aware and watching/listening to what goes on around me in this big world. I do zero drugs; no smoke, no drink, no pharma. It works rather well for me. I'm lean and spry as a monkey and my mind is clear and sharp.

Ken Albertsen


Guns vs Covid-19

Re: "Stars call for responsible gun depictions," (Life, June 15).

While the hypocritical media keeps reporting about gun violence in America, it is rarely noted that gun violence in America has increased by 30% since Covid. This is because lockdowns lead to child abuse, unemployment, poverty and a host of other problems that in turn can lead to violent behaviour.

The liberals who for the last two years have been libelling and threatening me for warning about these problems now have the incredible audacity to send me emails asking me to contribute to the cause of gun control.

Actually, the liberals should be happy with all this gun violence because the people who have been killed by automatic rifles no longer have to worry about getting Covid! (I'm sorry if my humour seems tasteless but at this point, I don't know of any other way to respond to all this insanity and madness).

Eric Bahrt


On Trump's claims

Re: "Riot hearings 'a mockery of justice': Trump," (BP, June 15).

It was top aides like Attorney General William Barr that repeatedly told Trump his election fraud claims were baseless and crazy stuff. Barr investigated the so-called dead voters, Dominion Voting machines, Giuliani's vote dumping claims etc and found zero evidence of any voter fraud.

Trump continued to publicly lie that there had been massive voter fraud to his millions of supporters, many of whom attacked the Capitol. Fox News hosts Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham privately pleaded with Trump to call off the rioters, but he did nothing for hours. Trump lost an incredible 61 court cases trying to prove there was election fraud when he knew there was none.

JT


Arms for Ukraine

Vital and timely information gained through espionage and interception of communications in warfare is well-documented and has decided the outcomes of many battles. Having cracked the encryption code for both Germany and Japan in WWII, America enjoyed an immense informational superiority that, in the end, proved decisive. This elementary warfare principle cannot be lost on America's military institution that has waged countless wars in the last century.

Today in Ukraine, over 25% of the population is ethnic Russian and some percentage is likely to be sympathetic towards the Russian cause. Even if only a few percent, Russia is probably well informed about all of Ukraine's military movements at all levels. This means that the transportation and deployment of any and all weapons sent to Ukraine by the United States and Nato have been easy targets for Russian missiles. Thus we see the quick destruction of these weapons as they arrived or as deployed.

Despite these well-known facts, "game-changing" weapons keep being sent to Ukraine. It is a little late, but not surprising, that the Ukrainian military is just now complaining about how outdated these weapons are and that they are no match for Russian weapons. With each new weapon shipment, it's becoming more clear that the USA has been using Ukraine just as an excuse to clear out its cache of old weapons and field test a few new ones just to keep Ukrainian fighting a lost cause. Other Nato countries have also offered or already sent WWII relics.

The USA's strategy was clear from the very beginning; make Ukrainians think that they would be welcomed into the EU and Nato; make them proxies in a war with Russia; make them believe that they can win; sanction Russia into oblivion, and run a disinformation campaign the likes of which has never been seen. It's as though the USA's foreign policy and thinking are still stuck in the 1990s. And it is especially mordant that it's the USA and Europe's economies that are now tanking, not Russia.

ML Saksiri Kridakorn


Not just an opinion

Re: "Devil to pay," (PostBag, June 13).

Forget myocarditis and pericarditis. The most dangerous side-effect of the Covid vaccination programme is the rash of malignant vaccine deniers such as Michael Setter that has spread across the world much like the disease itself.

These are not just people with a different opinion; they distort painstakingly acquired data from around the world to create fear and mistrust of life-saving Covid vaccines. They mock mask mandates one moment, then pillory the government for lifting them.

If anybody believes a word of Mr Setter's letter, please do yourself the favour of going to www.politifact.com or www.factcheck.org among other sites. Then try to find any reputable research that supports Mr Setter's laundry list of actual and potential side-effects of vaccines, let alone a projection that 2-3% of those vaccinated will suffer severe adverse events in their lifetimes. How indeed could anyone know after only two years of data on Covid patients?

No, no, no!

These are the fabrications of warped minds pure and simple. One can only wonder what disappointments in life have rendered Mr Setter and his ilk so embittered about, well, virtually everything, and drive his almost manic attempts to impose his desolate delusions on those of us still living in the real world.

Ray Ban


Park info, please

Re: Army kicks off free concerts with Benjakitti Park gigs," (BP, June 11).

Would the Bangkok Post please give us information on the route to Benjakitti Forest Park by car between 9am and 4pm?

So we can take advantage of the new bike lane that closes at 5.30pm.

Liloo Jiwatram


Singapore model

Re: "MPs cause of pension bloat," (BP, June 8).

I fully agree with this editorial that MPs shouldn't get a generous pension especially if they win their seat just once or perform poorly.

But even if MPs were paid the pittance that most deserve, that wouldn't begin to solve the problem of pension payments due to hard-working civil servants.

As the editorial recognises, our entire civil service needed top-to-bottom reform decades ago. I like the Singapore model, where civil servants -- including the prime minister -- were paid what their private-sector counterparts would have earned -- and had to deliver accordingly. And, even a whiff of corruption wasn't tolerated!

The Bangkok mayoral elections have shown that driving for reform pays. The provinces should similarly demand change and elect those who deliver -- including reform of the civil service.

Burin Kantabutra


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