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Everything posted by Flashermac

  1. Sales of alcoholic beverages will be allowed again from Sunday but people will not be allowed to drink in restaurants when they reopen, the government said on Friday. The announcement was published on Friday in the Royal Gazette as part of the easing of some of the stringent measures imposed it the battle against the coronavirus. The decision represents an about-face by the government, which said earlier this week that the alcohol ban would remain in effect until May 31 after it renewed the emergency decree for another month. “Shops selling alcoholic beverages are allowed to open but consumption at the shop is banned,” said the Royal Gazette noticesigned by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. It will take effect on Sunday. Restaurants will not be allowed to serve alcohol as part of the condition for their reopening from Sunday. Pubs and other entertainment venues where alcohol is served will remain closed. The ban on alcoholic beverage sales was enforced for most of April across the country, with some provincial governors imposing curbs earlier than others. In Bangkok, it started from April 10. Further details of the lifting of the ban will be released on Saturday by the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), according to Somsak Rungsita, secretary-general of the National Security Council. https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/1911252/booze-sales-back-from-sunday
  2. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    China envoy threatens Australia boycott over virus inquest demand SYDNEY: China's ambassador in Australia has warned that demands for a probe into the spread of the coronavirus could lead to a consumer boycott of Aussie wine or trips Down Under. Australia has joined the United States in calling for a thorough investigation of how the virus transformed from a localised epidemic in central China into a pandemic that has killed more than 200,000 people, forced billions into isolation and torpedoed the global economy. In a thinly veiled threat, ambassador Cheng Jingye warned the push for an independent inquest into the origins of the outbreak was "dangerous". "The Chinese public is frustrated, dismayed and disappointed with what Australia is doing now," he claimed in an interview with the Australian Financial Review published on Sunday. "If the mood is going from bad to worse, people would think 'why should we go to such a country that is not so friendly to China?' The tourists may have second thoughts," he added. "It is up to the people to decide. Maybe the ordinary people will say 'Why should we drink Australian wine? Eat Australian beef?'" Cheng also threatened the flow of Chinese students to Australian universities, a key source of revenue that is already under threat from pandemic travel restrictions. "The parents of the students would also think whether this place which they found is not so friendly, even hostile, whether this is the best place to send their kids here," he said. The comments mark a significant escalation in tensions between Beijing and Canberra, whose relations are already strained. They also reflect the willingness of a new generation of Chinese diplomats to aggressively and publicly push Communist Party interests, using Chinese economic might as leverage if necessary. Experts have said a full investigation into the coronavirus outbreak could prompt scrutiny of China's rulers and their response to the crisis, and open the door for the type of criticism of the Party that is rarely tolerated. Cheng also accused Australia of echoing talking points from the United States. "Some guys are attempting to blame China for their problems and deflect the attention," he said. "It's a kind of pandering to the assertions that are made by some forces in Washington." https://www.bangkokpost.com/world/1908570/china-envoy-threatens-australia-boycott-over-virus-inquest-demand?fbclid=IwAR03LkfFILs-BxWSgJlGRnxtGcsw3md3oopodoCU5eR6yGtB7gX6ZUPC6aA
  3. He wants 20,000 baht to leave. I'm sure the Thai police would "encourage" him to leave for half that much.
  4. Don't expect things to get any better without him. As long as the military backs the Kim family, it will just be more of the same. Kim Jong Un Has Put North Korea in Position to Outlast His Reign Whatever the state of Kim Jong Un’s health, he has already put North Korea in its strongest position to resist U.S. pressure in decades Eight years after Kim filled the power vacuum left by the death of his reclusive father, Kim Jong Il, North Korea is more secure and less isolated. The 36-year-old supreme leader has achieved two key marks of legitimacy long sought by his predecessors: a nuclear arsenal that can credibly deter an American attack and a personal relationship with the U.S. president, including three face-to-face meetings with Donald Trump. While North Korea is still among the world’s most impoverished nations, living standards are rising for the ruling elite in Pyongyang. Kim has shown he can endure crushing economic sanctions, illustrated by a United Nations report published Tuesday accusing the regime of widespread evasion. Moreover, the Kim dynasty holds a renewed pledge of strategic support from its ultimate guarantor, China. “The country has pole-vaulted in their nuclear-destruction potential and missile-delivery capabilities compared to capabilities under grandfather or father Kim,” said Soo Kim, a Rand Corp. policy analyst who specializes in Korean peninsula issues. “The specter of a North Korean nuclear attack breeds enough unease in the international community to lean more towards accommodation than confrontation.” That’s why many longtime observers of North Korea say the current uncertainty surrounding Kim Jong Un is less consequential than past succession scares. Speculation has been swirling about Kim’s health since he dropped out of state media last week, failing for the first time to attend events to celebrate the April 15 birthday of his late grandfather, Kim Il Sung. U.S. officials said they were told Kim was in critical condition after cardiovascular surgery, while South Korea said he was conducting “normal activities” in a rural part of the country. Trump told reporters that he thought that a separate CNN report earlier this week, which said that Kim was in grave condition, was “incorrect,” adding: “I’m hearing they used old documents.” No matter what, North Korea leaders have strong incentives to preserve the regime and Kim’s strategy of seeking sanctions relief from the U.S. by building a more dangerous nuclear arsenal. Indeed, U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, who has traveled to Pyongyang four times, indicated that the dispute between the two countries would persist if a successor such as Kim’s sister, Kim Yo Jong, took power. “The challenge remains the same, the goal remains unchanged,” Pompeo said Wednesday on Fox News. “Whoever is leading North Korea, we want them to give up their nuclear program.” [more] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-26/will-a-woman-run-north-korea-kim-yo-jong-outshines-male-rivals
  5. The number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Thailand has stopped climbing since Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha placed the country under emergency decree in late March. The Thai government’s rapid response to the deadly outbreak has been applauded by many in the international community and the World Health Organisation (WHO). However, halting the rise in infections has come at the expense of ordinary Thais, who are sacrificing their livelihoods in the war being waged against Covid-19. Many have lost their jobs in complying with government policies to control the virus, including the shutdown of businesses and the night-time curfew. As the days pass, these people are being forced to dip into their life savings to survive in an economy frozen by the pandemic response. Many have realised that a deadlier threat than Covid-19 is approaching and will soon reach their doorsteps. Its name is famine. Government aid measures, while barely adequate, are still not reaching many of the people who have been hardest hit by this crisis. In a sad irony, the website where people can register for aid is called “We do not leave anyone behind”. The evidence is overwhelming: People desperate for the Bt5,000 monthly handout have stormed the Finance Ministry, long lines are forming outside gold shops as Thais rush to sell jewellery for cash to buy food. And worst of all, the number of suicides is rising as the economic recession sends people into a spiral of stress and despair. General Prayut cannot just focus on the virus: he must also manage the lives of 67 million Thais, many of whom will soon face starvation if the current restrictions on daily continue much longer. He must make sure that aid measures enable people to afford the basic necessities of life, and that the money first goes to the ones who need it most. He also has to ignore opposition politicians who are criticising the government’s measures with a hidden agenda. Now is not the time for political debate, when people are facing the very real prospect of hunger leading to death. Starving people will resort to drastic actions, including breaking laws and restrictions set by the government to control the outbreak. If Prayut ignores this fact, the repercussions that follow could radically change both the Covid-19 situation in Thailand and the status of his government. ............................................ This is a translated version of the “Khon Thai” column that appeared in the Krungthep Turakij newspaper on April 16. https://www.nationthailand.com/premium/30386136?utm_source=homepage&utm_medium=internal_referral
  6. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    With Selective Coronavirus Coverage, China Builds a Culture of Hate The state propaganda machine highlights other countries’ mistakes while suppressing China’s, fueling anger toward foreigners and domestic critics alike. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/22/business/china-coronavirus-propaganda.html?fbclid=IwAR1wjZS9YCUZpRW999cYGXpGQUCQ-bqL_oNqhbdWJkEDHWle0iF30AhluHQ
  7. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    Snopes will not say who its "evaluators" are. We are supposed to trust them for their lack of biases. Everyone has biases, except apparently the folks who work for Snopes. However, the respected Media Bias site does recognise Snopes as one of the "least biased", which means it's not perfect but is better than most. "Overall, we rate Snopes on the left side of Least Biased based on infrequent stories that favor the left. We also rate them High for factual reporting based on transparency and proper sourcing of information. (D. Van Zandt 7/10/2016) Updated (01/11/2020)" https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/snopes/
  8. Wow, I had no idea that going on the wagon could be so life threatening. Maybe it's dangerous for the police to lock up drunks and keep them off the booze for a few days.
  9. PATTAYA — Pattaya city was hit by flash floods for the second consecutive day on Wednesday after being pounded by thunderstorms. Several areas were flooded up to a meter high and roads cut off after the touristic coastal city suddenly experienced torrential rain in the afternoon for over two hours. The city yesterday also saw vast areas submerged by floods following hours of heavy rain, damaging many homes and a popular beach. Many parts of the major road Pattaya Tai were inundated, causing traffic jams several kilometers long. Officials said they expect the flood to dry out within a few hours. The Meteorological Department today issued a warning of thunderstorms and gusty winds for several provinces in upper Thailand through Thursday. Up to 40 percent of Bangkok could see heavy rain and storms today and tomorrow. https://www.khaosodenglish.com/news/2019/04/03/flash-floods-hit-pattaya-after-hours-of-heavy-rain/
  10. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    Covid-19 outbreak ‘could kill 10m Thai jobs’ Thailand's job losses may reach 10 million if the coronavirus outbreak continues for a few months, a business advisory council said on Monday. The kingdom’s economy is being hit hard by the virus outbreak and is heading into a recession. "We think about 7 million jobs have been lost already, and the figure will hit 10 million if the outbreak drags on for 2-3 months," Kalin Sarasin, a council member and the head of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, told a briefing after a meeting. The country has a workforce of about 38 million. The council of government and business agencies discussed requests for support measures before proposing them to the government, said council chairman Thosaporn Sirisumphand. They included soft loans, tax breaks and financial support to retain jobs, he said. Thailand, which has recorded 2,579 cases of infection and 40 deaths, has imposed a nationwide night curfew, having closed malls and discouraged activities to limit the spread. The central bank has forecast the economy will contract 5.3% this year, which would be the weakest performance since the 1998 Asian financial crisis. https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1898955/covid-19-outbreak-could-kill-10m-thai-jobs#cxrecs_s
  11. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    Then I take it that Andrew Bolt is not exactly one of the most trustworthy sources. He's almost an unknown to me.
  12. BANGKOK — Up to 100,000 Thais who are severely dependent on alcohol are at risk amid the nationwide booze ban, an expert said Monday. According to Sawitri Assanangkornchai, the director of Center for Alcohol Studies at Prince of Songkla University, the withdrawal syndromes include high fever, profuse sweating, nausea, seizures, and severe anxiety. The ban on alcohol sale was imposed in a bid to deter large gatherings and minimize coronavirus infection risk, officials said. “These people must be monitored,” Sawitri said by phone. “If the situation is severe, then the person must be taken to hospital.” Sawitri said drinking alcohol, even when done alone, weakens one’s immune system and makes people more prone to being at risk of coronavirus infections. She said around 1 million Thais are dependent on alcohol, and as much as 10 percent of them are considered to be severely dependent – the common term “alcoholics” comes to mind, though Sawitri said the word is loaded. They could experience withdrawal symptoms as soon as within six hours or up to within three days. The director added that those severely dependent on alcohol should not stop drinking right away; instead, they should seek to drink less and less. Government spokesman Taweesin Visanuyothin also advised those experiencing alcohol withdrawal, such as hearing strange voices, to seek medical treatment immediately. According to Sawitri, at least one man in Buriram is believed to have died due to alcohol withdrawal over the weekend. A construction worker also climbed a tamarind tree in Nonthaburi on Monday morning, reportedly because he could not buy alcohol for his daily consumption. Rescue workers spent an hour trying to talk him down, to no avail. The man eventually fell down and was taken to a police station for questioning. While Sawitri sees more room to reduce alcohol dependency, such as limiting the sale time of the day further, she said Thailand is still far from the ranks of heavy drinkers in the world, compared to China, South Korea, and Japan. https://www.khaosodenglish.com/news/crimecourtscalamity/2020/04/13/100000-thais-face-severe-alcohol-withdrawal-during-virus-booze-ban/
  13. Flashermac

    The Covid-19 thread

    Sky News host Andrew Bolt says claims coronavirus came from a Wuhan exotic animal market were beginning to fall apart with a Chinese academic pointing the finger at dangerous virology labs. A scholar from the South China University of Technology wrote a report casting doubt on the claim revealing “bat was never a food source in Wuhan” and bat was never sold at the infamous wet market. Instead, the author theorised that “a nearby laboratory just 300 metres from the market” was responsible for the outbreak. He said a researcher who worked coronaviruses and bats was quarantined for 14 days after being splashed with infected blood and urine. The scholar has since withdrawn his paper, a decision Mr Bolt said may have been due to pressure “to shut up” from Chinese leadership. Mr Bolt also revealed on his show that another nearby lab, the Wuhan Institute of Virology, bragged about discovering and identifying “a large number of new bat and rodent viruses” in a job ad posted in 2019.
  14. British racing great Stirling Moss dies aged 90 https://www.bangkokpost.com/sports/1898285/british-racing-great-stirling-moss-dies-aged-90#cxrecs_s
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