We all know about all the changes happening in Burma these days.

But there’s one issue that I haven’t seen get much attention, and that I figure is worthy of some closer monitoring. It may tell us something useful about political change.

Over the years I have accumulated a pretty big collection of State Peace and Development Council era propaganda statements. All the usual stuff: billboards, pamphlets, papers. This material is mostly in Burmese and English, with a few items here-and-there in an ethnic minority language. Last time I was in Yangon I noticed that the old signs were still up around town. Some were, naturally enough, looking a bit worse for wear.

What I am wondering is: when will these signs be taken down? When will newspapers stop publishing the “national causes”, and all the rest? And can anyone tell us whether the big red billboards near the palace wall in Mandalay (as pictured) are still in place?

I must confess that I once walked all the way around the mout to make sure I had copies of all of them. For posterity, you know; on the off-chance that one day they will be gone forever.