Even before they were elected nearly two years ago, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and her ruling Pheu Thai Party said they planned to bring about national reconciliation through the introduction of new laws.
The result has been a flurry of proposed bills in parliament which, if anything, have increased the partisan fighting. There is also no evidence to suggest such laws will ever help resolve the situation. Last week, a bill proposing an amnesty for certain so-called political crimes was placed atop the agenda for the next session of parliament, which reconvenes on Aug 1.
The amnesty bill sponsored by Samut Prakan MP Worachai Hema has been described as "moderate" and "less controversial" than seven other such bills on the Lower House docket. Until last week, it was placed as the second-least important matter on parliament's agenda. But a heated, divisive two-day debate pushed it to the top of the list.
The vote that propelled Mr Worachai's pet proposal illustrates the problem. It was 283 to 56. No opposition MPs voted in favour. Most left, knowing full well that the Pheu Thai majority would prevail, as it did. Once the ruling party decides to act, its whips ensure the outcome is never in doubt.
The intent of Mr Worachai's bill is to grant an amnesty to every person who broke the law between Sept 19, 2006, and May 10, 2011 _ assuming their acts were politically motivated.
As he describes it, an instant amnesty would wipe the records clean and empty prison cells of all colour-coded group members charged with political offences.
The first problem, of course, is differentiating between political and criminal acts. From a legal point of view this is at best difficult, and perhaps even impossible. All those arrested and charged so far have faced criminal charges, and often serious ones such as terrorism, treason and assault.
Of course, everyone knows, and Mr Worachai acknowledges, the bill's most important caveat, which is that the amnesty will not apply to crimes committed by Thaksin Shinawatra. As a result, civil strife is still very possible, if not a certainty. Call it the Thaksin Exception.
As the Thaksin Exception proves, any sweeping amnesty bill is certain to be unfair. Some acts during the five years of strife were serious criminal offences. Murders most foul were committed in April and May 2010, for example.
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and the Pheu Thai Party ran their 2011 election campaign in large part on a promise to bring about national reconciliation. Ironically, it is an ideal and a goal that the whole nation can agree on.
But as always, the devil is in the detail. It is Ms Yingluck's stubborn belief that new laws on an amnesty and restitution and amendments to the constitution will advance reconciliation. At best, this is debatable.
For nearly two years, parliament has been debating the amnesty issue. The government and Pheu Thai cannot agree on just how to write an amnesty bill. The problem, of course, is compounded because the very core of party policy is to legally forgive Thaksin and bring him back in triumph from his overseas exile.
Every amnesty proposal has drawn heavy criticism. They all risk triggering another round of civil strife if they pass. In short, there is no good case to be made for using the dictatorship of the majority to ram an amnesty bill through parliament.
The government should continue to set aside this issue and concentrate on more urgent national problems.