Man on the Moon

The Thai Government is ‘liberal’ with its public holidays – 27 of them in 2019.

The last one I was there for was ( King ) Chulalongkorn Memorial Day. More than half of the public holidays are connected to royalty.

Thais – like many women, I hear, love men in uniform. This holiday, as with the others, is as good an excuse as any to button one on, and prance about.There’s also a noticeably strong police and army ( uniformed ) presence in Thailand.

Both the uniforms and the strong regard for royalty seem to me to be a sign of a deeply conformist society. It’s a collectivist – “what’s best for all of us?” – outlook. Thailand, and many other Eastern societies, typically follow this ethic.

As opposed to an individualist – “what’s best for me and mine?” – outlook. Think Western / United States, especially.

There are pluses and minuses to both. Following are some back-of-the-napkin ideas. For the first, I’m thinking mainly of Thailand. For the second, America.

Collectivism / conformity – suffocating bureaucracy, poor education standards ( because no-one is allowed to fail, and thus few stand out ), better social adjustment, fewer innovations, less people who are way more ‘dirt poor’ than the rest.

Individualism – the PC, the Velvet Underground and The Ramones, a Man on the Moon, the Internet, ( mass-affordable ) cars. More sick people ( more murders than anywhere else, more people on medication ), and more wealth concentrated in fewer hands.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.