It was inconvenient to many of the candidates, but the invasion of expert opinion into the race for Bangkok governor managed to lay down a few facts about campaign fudging. Three men who actually know about the subject recently challenged the three men who lead the polls for the March 3 election. The result was a careful and realistic look at the promises on the campaign trail, particularly for traffic and transport. Voters should heed their statements before they head for the polls.
Traffic expert Saksit Chalermpong of Chulalongkorn University, engineer Suchatvee Suwansawat of King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang and Nida vice-rector Thawatchai Supadit stripped the recklessness from the rhetoric of the top three candidates. But their criticism generally applied to all. Candidate promises are thin as tissue, details are skimpy. In some cases, candidates have made promises they cannot keep, either because of Bangkok's subservience to the government or other laws.
This is not to say candidates are basically insincere or dishonest. What we witness is part of the realities of a modern election campaign. The media search for sound bites over lengthy explanation never ends. Every candidate for governor is applying for a job that comes with a lot of pressure. If they can't handle the campaign pressure, how can voters trust them to stay rational when in office?
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