Democracy oh democracy, what happened in Thailand? How did a legitimate government reduced to submission due to it being held hostage by opposition leaders?
Libels oh libels, when freedom of expression escalates to incitement. How did that happen? When there is no control and liability in freedom of expression, there is only chaos. Freedom is a double-edged sword. Those who subscribe to complete freedom without any accountability are disillusioned (if not naive) people because such freedom breeds terrorism, extremism, panic, chaos and threat if not regulated or restricted. Journalists “might” know how to self-regulate, but human will be human… erred to the core. Furthermore, journalists are controlled by editors, and editors are controlled by board of directors, if not tycoons (aka owners). Even if government don’t control the press, the press will still (and always) be controlled by human. If that is the case, press should be regulated, no? Imagine how powerful press owners will be if there is no rule. I would be indeed very nice to press owners if I want to stay as prime minister. I would be extremely nice and generous if I aspire to be a prime minister. So, how is it possible for press to be unregulated when it is “owned”? Also, how can news be objective when people who writes it is very subjective, or when journalists are being “assigned” to news by superiors? E.g. if I’m a sport journalist and I want to cover cycling event, but due to marketing advice, my editor wanted me to cover football/tennis instead. Furthermore, “bad news” is always good news to marketing, and hence we don’t see a lot of news about Samaritans as compared to criminals. A very good example of freedom of press gone wrong is illustrated fictionally by J. Jonah Jameson, Inc. (Daily Bugle) against Spiderman (Marvel Comics).
Last, I guess democracy is weak when the majority is merely herds rather than collective intellectuals. Furthermore, there is never ever a good idea to rely on freedom of press to get objective news. Press will always be subjective no matter what. Also, libel will be libel regardless of justification. If it’s judicially decided as libel, freedom of press what-not should pay the price nonetheless.
I don’t aspire to have dictatorship in any system of government, but what I despise the most is having rats in democratic system. A good government should be preserved and not held hostage by any means, be it opposition, army or press. I despise bigots. If Thai opposition wants change, they should also relinquish their hunger for positions when they suggest Shinawatra to relinquish her post. If not, they are just as bad and power hungry. A true justice and conciliatory action would be to allow fresh untainted faces (but equally capable) to run for election, rather than having the face who incited the Bangkok shutdown (which showed no care for the health of Thai economy nor peace and stability in the country).