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Everything posted by Flashermac

  1. In what appears to be a major overhaul of immigration procedures, dare we say ‘modernisation’, foreign visitors will soon no longer have to fill out the “TM6” arrival forms. The white and blue form has been a source of confusion for decades as passengers try to fill them out on planes or in a mad rush when they arrive at immigration desks without them, for decades. The reason for the decision to go all-digital with the arrival procedure is that, of all reasons, the storage of all the white and blue cards had become an issue. But wait, there’s more. Now khaosodenglish.com are reporting that Thai immigration is not only doing away with the TM6 forms, they’re about to launch a new mobile phone app to make TM30 reporting easier. Kobsak Pootrakool, the Deputy Secretary-General to the PM, also mentioned on Tuesday that another app is being developed to allow long-stay foreigners to complete their 90 day reporting with their smart phone. And, yes, he said a smartphone App was also going to make the TM30 reporting easier. The TM30 form, and its companion, the TM28, have been a source of expat displeasure over the past five months since the immigration department decided to enforce a little-used 1979 law that required foreigners to report their whereabouts if they had stayed overnight at an address different from their registered address. The same applied for landlords or owners of accommodation to report foreigners staying at their venues within 24 hours. Along the way there appeared cracks in the enforcement with all sorts of variations and conundrums being thrown up at organised panel meetings and online, little of which was answered with any certainty from the Thai immigration authorities. Kobsak now claims that the changes are designed to attract more visitors and accommodate those already living in the kingdom. “We made the decision last Friday. Within two to three months, life will be much easier for foreign tourists and expats.” “Foreigners will be able to report their whereabouts with just four clicks on their smartphone to fulfill regulations that require them to report to immigration authorities every 90 days.” Deputy immigration commander Nattapon Sawaengkit has confirmed the move to move the TM30 reporting online when contacted for comment, but assigned another officer to explain the details, according to the khaosodenglish.com report. SOURCE: khaosodenglish.com
  2. Flashermac

    Usa Thread

  3. Mainly Thais in my apartment building ... pretty much thta way everywhere.
  4. Caution: I looked at Khasod English and didn't see this reported anywhere.
  5. Flashermac

    Usa Thread

    Warren is apparently considered too left to be elected, even more so than Bernie. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-hypocrisy-of-bernie-sanders-income-inequality_b_10096298
  6. Flashermac

    Usa Thread

    The 20 Democratic choices are hardly very inspiring. I like Bernie, but he's a hypocrite. (Maybe all politicians are.) Biden would probably be the best if they want to beat Trump, but I doubt if the Dems will go for him. Trump may win re-election simply by default.
  7. Flashermac

    The Anything Goes Youtubery Thread

    Piers Morgan: "The left have become unbearable"
  8. Flashermac

    Usa Thread

    John Everingham, a Bangkok resident Australian journallist, travelled in Laos even after the communist takeover (though they did eventually kick him out). He told me that he was arrested for a few days by the Pathet Lao forces in eastern Laos. He said they informed him that something like 150 US POWs still remained in Laos, having been held back in hopes of bribing the US to pay millions for their release. When the US government refused to do so, he figured they were just shot. 😮 https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1994/01/02/pow-pilots-left-
  9. Flashermac

    Strife in Hong Kong

    Google says YouTube campaign smeared Hong Kong protests SAN FRANCISCO - Google on Thursday said it disabled a series of YouTube channels that appeared to be part of a coordinated influence campaign against pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. The announcement by YouTube's parent company came after Twitter and Facebook accused the Chinese government of backing a social media campaign to discredit Hong Kong's protest movement and sow political discord in the city. Google disabled 210 YouTube channels that it found behaved in a coordinated manner while uploading videos related to the Hong Kong protests, according to Shane Huntley of the company's security threat analysis group. "This discovery was consistent with recent observations and actions related to China announced by Facebook and Twitter," Huntley said in an online post. Twitter and Facebook announced this week that they suspended nearly 1,000 active accounts linked to a coordinated influence campaign. Twitter said it had shut down about 200,000 more before they could inflict any damage. "These accounts were deliberately and specifically attempting to sow political discord in Hong Kong, including undermining the legitimacy and political positions of the protest movement on the ground," Twitter said, referring to the active accounts it shut down. Facebook said some of the posts from accounts it banned compared the protesters in Hong Kong with Islamic State group militants, branded them "cockroaches" and alleged they planned to kill people using slingshots. China has "taken a page from Russia's playbook" as it uses social media platforms outside the country to wage a disinformation campaign against the protests, according to the non-profit Soufan Center for research, analysis, and strategic dialogue related to global security issues. "Beijing has deployed a relentless disinformation campaign on Twitter and Facebook powered by unknown numbers of bots, trolls, and so-called 'sock puppets,'" the center said on its website, referring to fake online identities created for deception. "China's behavior will likely grow more aggressive in both the physical and virtual realms, using on-the-ground actions to complement an intensifying cyber campaign characterized by disinformation, deflection, and obfuscation." - Unprecedented political crisis - While social media platforms have been tools for people to advocate for rights, justice or freedom in their countries, the services are being turned on them by oppressive governments, according to the Soufan Center. "Autocratic governments are now using these same platforms to disparage demonstrators, divide protest movements, and confuse sympathetic onlookers," the center said. Hong Kong, a semi-autonomous southern Chinese city and one of the world's most important financial hubs, is in the grip of an unprecedented political crisis that has seen millions of people take to the streets demanding greater freedoms. China's government has publicly largely left the city's leaders and police force to try and resolve the crisis, but behind the scenes online, Beijing is seeking to sway public opinion about Hong Kong, according to Twitter and Facebook. "We are disclosing a significant state-backed information operation focused on the situation in Hong Kong, specifically the protest movement and their calls for political change," Twitter said. It said it had pulled 936 accounts originating in China that were spreading disinformation. Twitter and Facebook are banned in China, part of the government's so-called "Great Firewall" of censorship. Because of the bans, many of the fake accounts were accessed using "virtual private networks" that give a deceptive picture of the user's location, Twitter said. Facebook said it had acted on a tip from Twitter, removing seven pages, three groups and five Facebook accounts that had about 15,500 followers. "Although the people behind this activity attempted to conceal their identities, our investigation found links to individuals associated with the Chinese government," Facebook said. https://www.bangkokpost.com/world/1735427/google-says-youtube-campaign-smeared-hong-kong-protests?fbclid=IwAR3LzyR6nKDgGjNe8-s1d3Omla1SRAo0yYhouVgrHLwDH0DLaRsjxrKBvug#cxrecs_s
  10. Flashermac

    The TM 30 form

    For one thing the law dates back to 1979. That's before the internet, mobile phones etc. Reporting made a bit more sense back then.
  11. Flashermac

    Wifi for iPhone

    Mr Thickie again. I want to get wifi for my phone. So my question is, do I have to use True, the same as my phone sim, or can I use another service? AIS has been recommended to me as cheap and usuable, but there is no way I want to switch servors. I've have the same phone number for 20 or so years and am not about to give that up, will all the problems that would involve.
  12. Flashermac

    Wifi for iPhone

    Or just carry a map and compass around with me. (The kind of compass that points north, not the kind that goes around in circles.)
  13. Flashermac

    No Bar Fines On Cowboy?!

    These days in Tijuana be sure to wear your body armour. "Tijuana was the most violent city in the world in 2018, according a new report by a Mexican nonprofit group that ranked cities based on their homicide rates." https://www.latimes.com/world/la-fg-mexico-tijuana-violence-20190314-story.html
  14. Flashermac

    No Bar Fines On Cowboy?!

    The Japanese discovered the Thermae after the yen fell off its high perch. Suddenly they could no longer afford the Ginza-type prices being charged at Soi Thaniya. Unfortunately, they also discovered Soi Cowboy and managed to drive up prices there.
  15. Flashermac

    The TM 30 form

    A friend called me today. He went to do a TM28, which is supposed to be required if you spend more than 24 hours in another province. He told me the Pathumthani immigration office refused to accept it. They said, "We are not going to do that. It's too much work and it's ridiculous." Rebellion in the Immigration department?
  16. Flashermac

    Lao activist vanishes in Bangkok

    Under the Frenchies, all schools taught in Froglais. Thus the older generation is fluent in French, just as you'll run into older Indonesians who speak Dutch. The French also effed up the spelling of Lao names - cities and people. I prefer not to use the French spellings of Lso names.
  17. A Lao man working in Bangkok has disappeared after criticising his country’s government online and in public protests, Lao sources say. Od Sayavong, 34, vanished on Aug 26 after telling a roommate that he would be home for dinner, the roommate told the Lao Service of Radio Free Asia (RFA) on Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity. “At around 6pm, he sent me a text message telling me to cook rice for dinner, and that he would buy some other food on his way home, as he didn’t want to eat the food left in the refrigerator,” RFA quoted the friend as saying. “We waited for him until 11pm, and then until midnight, but he never showed up. Another roommate of ours called Tiger tried many times to reach him on the phone, but the calls didn’t connect, so we finally decided to eat without him.” Another friend who lives in the same building in Bung Kum district of Bangkok said he had seen Od briefly on the morning of the day he went missing. “I saw him go off to work wearing his work uniform. I didn’t talk to him or ask him anything,” he said. Od, who worked as a cook at a restaurant near his home, had been awaiting resettlement to a third country since the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Bangkok registered him as a person of concern in December 2017.Colleagues of the Lao activist filed a report with Thai police on Sept 2 but no progress in the investigation has been reported. Lt Gen Kongcheep Tantravanich, a Defence Ministry spokesman, on Friday denied knowledge of Od’s whereabouts. Od’s involvement in politics was the likely reason for his disappearance, the friend said.“He had come out to protest against the [Lao] government, and most recently he had posted a video clip online criticising the Lao government during the time of the Asean meetings in Thailand,” he said. According to Human Rights Watch, members of "Free Lao" group in Thailand said that in recent weeks they been put under surveillance and intimidated by Thai and Lao authorities. “They believe this is to stop them from protesting or otherwise criticising the Lao government during the Asean People’s Forum, being held in Bangkok from Sept 10-12.” Part of a group of Lao dissidents living in Bangkok, Od had taken part in a June 16 protest in Bangkok calling for political freedoms and human rights in the opaque communist state, especially for victims of government land grabs and dam collapses that have left hundreds stuck in poor housing without a way to earn a living. He had also called for the release of three Lao workers given long prison terms in April 2017 for criticising their government while working in Thailand, and for a UN investigation into the still-unsolved disappearance of rural development expert Sombath Somphone. Sombath disappeared on Dec 15, 2012, when police stopped him in his vehicle at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Vientiane. He was then transferred to another vehicle, according to a police surveillance video, and has not been heard from since. Before his abduction, Sombath had challenged massive land deals negotiated by the government that had left thousands of rural Lao villagers homeless with little paid in compensation. The deals sparked rare popular protests in Laos, where political speech is tightly controlled. In a Sept 6 statement, the Paris-based International Federation for Human Rights and its member organisation Lao Movement for Human Rights (LMHR) called on Thai authorities to immediately investigate the activist’s disappearance. “Od sought refuge in Thailand but the country has become increasingly unsafe for asylum seekers,” the rights group wrote. “Thai authorities must immediately determine Od’s fate or whereabouts and the government must adopt measures that guarantee the rights of asylum seekers in accordance with international standards.” Speaking to RFA on Friday, LMHR president Vanida Thepsouvanh said that Od’s case reminds her of the three Lao workers jailed in 2017 who had been kidnapped on their return from Thailand to Laos and then vanished in custody until their trial and sentencing. “This appears to be a forced disappearance,” she said. Earlier this year, Truong Duy Nhat, a Vietnamese political activist who had sought refuge in Thailand, was abducted. The blogger went missing on Jan 26 in Bangkok, where he had fled to seek political asylum. It is suspected that Nhat was abducted by unknown individuals in Bangkok before being taken back to Vietnam against his will. In March 2019, he was revealed to be detained in a jail in Hanoi. https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/1744989/lao-activist-vanishes-in-bangkok
  18. Flashermac

    Financial requirement for a visa

    My 800,000 is in the Bangkok Bank. But for years now every time I've renewed Immigration has sent me downstairs to get an update for that day on my account, even though I always bring a bank statement issued the day before. That's at Chaengwattana, which has a branch of almost every bank in the basement floor. At other immigration offices, it might require a quick trip to a nearby bank. p.s. When I renewed this time, I had to get a TM30 from my landlord. Immigration told me that without it, they couldn't issue me a new visa. Be prepared for that. It caught almost everyone by surprise, and we all had to go back home to have our landlord do it. (The forms are in Thai and it's not supposed to be our responsibility, but very few landlords knew they had to do it. They never did before.)
  19. Flashermac

    No Bar Fines On Cowboy?!

    You can find plenty of freelancers for 1,500. Definitely not in the bars.
  20. Flashermac

    Wifi for iPhone

    Would I have to bar fine them? That would cost more than I paid for the phone.
  21. Flashermac

    The TM 30 form

    May be a new gpvernment by then.
  22. I have genuine degrees from California, and I've never heard of either of these esteemed universities. I studied at U C's Santa Barbara campus, but nowadays there are also numerous state universities (the former state colleges). Still, I haven't encountered a critter called California University. I supect his PhD may have come from Khao San Road University. p.s. Judging by the title of the dissertation, I expect that reading the English would be enough to drive one to drink. And no, I can't think of a reason why his "research" would be submitted to two different "universities" at the same time.
  23. Flashermac

    Taxi Complaint

    A Brit friend pulled out onto Rachadapisek one day and was stopped halfway out when the light turned red. When the light turned green, a taxi driver drove straight into the side of my friend's car. The police arrived, and the taxi driver insisted the Farang had run into him. Two mo'cy' taxi guys backed up the driver; it was the Brit's fault. The police sergeant looked at the damage to the side of the Farang's car and knew that had to be wrong. Still, he had to do something, so he fined the Brit 100 baht and let him go. TIT.