Thai statistic of the day: young people don’t care about politics!
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Thai statistic of the day: young people don’t care about politics!

By Saksith Saiyasombut

Note: the following post contains satire!

Here are some numbers for you as seen in an article by the Bangkok Post…

An opinion survey by Bangkok Poll at Bangkok University found that more than 60 per cent of young people pay little or no attention to politics. The pollsters surveyed 1,159 people in Bangkok aged 15 to 25 years from Sept 10 to 12 asking them about politics, to mark National Youth Day on Sept 20. Asked about their interest in politics, 30.5 per cent of the respondents said they had some interest and 7.4 per cent of them had a strong interest , Bangkok Poll reported on Thursday. But 54.0 per cent said they paid little attention to politics and 8.1 per cent said they gave it no attention at all.

All excerpts from: “Most young people ignore politics“, Bangkok Post, September 16, 2010

Well, that happens in the best democracies (*cough*) that young people these days have other things to worry about such as school, studies, fashion, video games, etc. But why would the Thai youth think so?

Asked about the current political outlook, 47.6 per cent said full of conflict and finding mistakes made by political rivals, 26.7 per cent said it gave them a headache, 11.5 per cent said it’s not democratic, 6.5 per cent said full of violence, 4.3 per cent saw a start of reconciliation, 1.2 per cent thought the situation has returned to normal, and 2.2 per cent said it was just a mirage.

Ok, the current situation isn’t really good at the moment and we haven’t made much progress on reconciliation so far. But with the right people we can achieve something, right?

Asked about the attitudes of Thai politicians, 44.0 per cent of them said they thought only about their own self-interest, 16.2 per cent said politicians would do anything to hold power, 12.2 per cent said they were corrupt, 10.8 per said they were good only for talking, 6.5 per cent said they had more privileges than ordinary people. Only 4.6 per cent said they were competent and suitable to be people’s representatives, 4.3 per cent thought politicians think of the country’s best interests, 0.6 per cent said they were honest, and 0.8 per cent had no opinion.

Alright, our MPs are not the youngest bunch and admittedly many of them could be out of touch with the young, hip demographic. But they will soon retire and soon a new generation of politicians will sweep in. And isn’t this the right opportunity to encourage young people to finally stand up and take a fresh approach in order for some changes in politics as politicians?

Asked whether they wanted to become a politician, 90.6 per cent said no, 9.4 per cent said yes.


Saksith Saiyasombut is a Thai blogger and journalist based in Hamburg, Germany. He can be followed on Twitter @Saksith.