Archive for the ‘conflict of interest’ Category

Thailand: Thaksin phones up Bangkok rally

November 2, 2008

Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has given an emotional address by phone to tens of thousands of supporters at a rally in Bangkok.


The rally was aimed at demonstrating the continuing popularity of Mr Thaksin, who has been living in exile since August after a court verdict.

He was convicted in absentia of breaking conflict of interest rules.

Supporters of Thaksin Shinawatra supporters shout slogans during ... 
Supporters of Thaksin Shinawatra supporters shout slogans during a rally at Bangkok’s Rajamanangala Stadium. The former Thai premier denounced his opponents in a telephone address to 90,000 loyal supporters that were packed into a sports stadium.(AFP/Pornchai Kittiwongsakul)

Mr Thaksin accused his opponents of destroying democracy in order to keep him out of power.

Saturday’s rally was a well organised show of strength by the Thaksin camp, reminiscent of the slick campaigns that helped the former prime minister win three successive elections, the BBC’s Jonathan Head reports from the rally.

The aim, said the organisers, was to demonstrate popular support for the Thaksin-inspired government, at a time when it is under pressure to step down from the People’s Alliance for Democracy protest movement, which has been occupying the prime minister’s office since August.

‘Miss you all’

Dressed in a sea of red shirts, to distinguish them from their yellow-shirted opponents, many had travelled long distances to the rally from the north and north-east, where the government has its strongest following, but there were many from Bangkok as well.

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Corporate Cash Behind ’08 Presidential Debates

September 26, 2008

By Jennifer Haberkorn
The Washington Times
The presidential debates, one of the most potentially significant events of the 2008 campaign, are being brought to you, in part, by the very companies that the participants say they want to keep out of politics.

Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama have spent much of their time railing against the control of Washington by special interest groups and lobbyists, but some of those same groups are now spending millions of dollars to bring the presidential face-off to the public.

Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc., the International Bottled Water Association and Hewlett-Packard-owned Electronic Data Systems are among the private firms and organizations sponsoring the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD), which hosts the forums every four years.

The CPD, which the candidates say they have no control over, declined to disclose how much its sponsors have contributed.

This year, the CPD planned to host three debates between the presidential candidates and one with the vice-presidential candidates. But the first presidential debate, scheduled for Friday night, is in serious doubt because of the flurry of congressional activity on the economic crisis. The debates are to be held in Oxford, Miss.; St. Louis; Nashville, Tenn.; and Hempstead, N.Y.

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