BANGKOK — The internet was overwhelmed with sarcasm and dismay Thursday after a five-month-old political party was disbanded three weeks before Election Day.
Meme-makers had obviously been toiling in advance of the Constitutional Court’s completely unsurprising verdict to dissolve Thai Raksa Chart. Within moments of the court officially dissolving the party for nominating a member of the royal family, Thai netizens unleashed a torrent of angry and disappointed reactions.
While more than a few were certainly delighted by the outcome, our best search effort concluded they aren’t adept meme-smiths. Ubolratana Mahidol, whose candidacy was pulled within days of being announced last month, soon signalled her own disappointment on her platform of choice – Instagram.
“It’s very sad and depressing,” she wrote in two replies to a comment. “Thank you very much. I’ll try my best to help.”
On Twitter, #ThaiRaksaChart and #Disband leaped to become the top two trending Thai hashtags. Many comments implied a double-standard at work in how the pro-establishment and opposition parties have been treated.
“Here’s the country where the coup-makers never get prosecuted for overthrowing the government,” @Newuno wrote.
“You should dissolve Paiboon’s party too. The Lord Buddha used to be a prince as well, right?” wrote another user @mayestpx, referring to the controversial use of religion by the People’s Reform Party.
Memes burst across other social media platforms as well. On Basement Karaoke, a popular Facebook page, it was Avengers’ super villain Thanos – who has the power to end life by snapping his fingers – with a dissolving logo of the Thai Raksa Chart party. “It ends here, with no more force left to resist,” read the caption.
Satirical comic Kai Maew also chimed in with his character The General – a stand-in for junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha – using a “court” cream to clear a pimple from his face.
Twitter user @Gameromteen went with the reliable “Press F to pay respects” meme from Call of Duty in an image showing soldiers lined up before a coffin with the party’s logo memorialized.
— GamerOmteen (@gameromteen) March 7, 2019
User @BadSuperRobot marshalled the tragic Middle Earth bromance of Boromir and Aragorn to invoke the relationship between Thai Raksa Chart and Pheu Thai. ‘To Fight the DARKNESS, You Must Be BRAVE,’ reads the accompanying tweet.
— BadSuperRobot (@BadSuperRobot) March 7, 2019
Not sparing any subtlety, someone made a Thai Raksa Chart death certificate.
— Tia Woo (@TiaInw) March 7, 2019