Jump to content

Leaderboard

Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 05/14/24 in all areas

  1. They were my thoughts as well but to be honest I'd like to see it keep going. But that relies entirely on the input from members.
    3 points
  2. While walking down the street one day a politician is tragically hit by a truck and dies. His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance. 'Welcome to heaven,' says St. Peter. 'Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you.' 'No problem, just let me in,' says the man. 'Well, I'd like to, but I have orders from higher up. What we'll do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity.' 'Really, I've made up my mind. I want to be in heaven,' says the MP 'I'm sorry, but we have our rules.' And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him. Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people. They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and champagne. Also present is the devil, who really is a very friendly & nice guy who has a good time dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before he realises it, it is time to go. Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises.... The elevator goes up, up, up and the door re-opens on heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him. 'Now it's time to visit heaven.' So, 24 hours pass with the MP joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realises it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns. 'Well, then, you've spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose your eternity.' The MP reflects for a minute, then he answers: 'Well, I would never have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in hell.' So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. Now the doors of the elevator open and he's in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage. He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags as more trash falls from above. The devil comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulder. ' I don't understand,' stammers the MP. 'Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne, and danced and had a great time. Now there's just a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable. What happened? ' The devil looks at him, smiles and says, ' Yesterday we were campaigning.. ...Today you voted.
    2 points
  3. It's been many years since I posted on this forum. I am sure that there are many, many of his friends that would like to know this. Maybe it is not my place to post this, but after getting the terrible news from Long Gun via Facebook, I thought it best to let the members know. I'm sure there will be much more to follow, but to those of us who called him more than just a Forum Founder/Moderator, but a true friend, it is a very sad day indeed.
    2 points
  4. You just reference damned near every John Wayne war movie ever made. The news show 60 minutes did a segment called “Ronald Regan the movie,” where in, they should how many times he referenced movies as historical fact, in in fact what he was referencing was not at all true. There was an atrocity, one of many, that took place in the USA, referred to as try he Rosewood incident. Basically a white woman got beaten up by a guy. She was fucking around with and needed to cover up to lie with her husband, so she said she was beaten up by a black guy who tried to rape her. The whole town went on a rampage and went over to the neighboring town, and started trying to kill every black man and every black person. There’s been a few documentaries about it. Hollywood made a big blockbuster movie about it. That’s sensationalized the whole thing totally distorted the truth and of course the hero was a white guy. If that isn’t offensive, I don’t know what is. Then there’s the movie bridge on the river Kwai , and absolute slap in the face to the people who died building that bridge and the railroad. The list is endless. That’s why I pretty much just try to stick to documentaries these days.
    2 points
  5. Marcel was cremated yesterday, the ceremony was attended by members of his family and many friends, R.I.P.
    2 points
  6. Nice to see all the old board members, too bad it has to be a tragedy that caused it. Since the beginning of this board, Khun Sanuk was the public face of the board, and I have stayed in the background tending to sysadmin duties. I'll continue to do that for the foreseeable future. We may need to consider a new moderator or two to make sure things are attended to. Jigger
    2 points
  7. You must be the youngest Board Member by now then
    1 point
  8. Prosecutors in Thailand will indict a former national police chief on charges of impeding legal action against an heir to the Red Bull energy drink fortune who was accused of killing a Bangkok police officer in a 2012 hit-and-run. Several government officials and police officers have been accused of a conspiracy to help Vorayuth “Boss” Yoovidhya escape justice by fleeing abroad in a case widely held up as an example of how the rich and well-connected enjoy impunity in Thailand. Vorayuth is the grandson of Chaleo Yoovidhya, one of the creators of the globally famous Red Bull brand. Forbes magazine puts the family’s net worth at $20 billion. Somyot Poompanmoung, the police chief in 2014-15, and other suspects were charged with abuse of power in order to aid an individual to avoid prosecution. Somyot was accused by the National Anti-Corruption Commission last year of involvement in tampering with evidence by altering the record of the speed of the car that Vorayuth was allegedly driving at the time of the accident. The Office of the Attorney General said it also will indict seven other people including police officers, a lawyer, an engineering specialist and a former deputy attorney general in relation to the case. Vorayuth was believed to be at the wheel of a Ferrari that struck the back of a traffic policeman’s motorcycle on a main Bangkok road. The officer, Wichean Klunprasert, was flung from his motorbike and died at the scene. The car sped off but police followed a trail of oil and brake fluid to the Yoovidhya family’s luxury compound on a nearby side road. Wichean's family have told Thai media that they received compensation of 3 million baht ($83,000) from the Yoovidhya family in exchange for them not pursuing further legal action. For years Vorayuth avoided court by not turning up to meet prosecutors. A warrant against him was finally issued in 2017, a few days after he had left Thailand. His Thai passport was later revoked. Meanwhile, almost all charges against him have expired due to the statute of limitations. The last remaining charge — causing death by reckless driving — will expire in 2027.
    1 point
  9. I couldn't think of anything I would rather watch less. Eurovision would run a distant second. The guy is a complete twat.
    1 point
  10. The Responder [2022 TV] A crisis-stricken, morally compromised first-responder tackles a series of night shifts on the beat in Liverpool, while trying to keep his head above water personally and professionally. This is a UK TV police drama at its best, astonishing lead performance, top support actors in a dark atmospheric and disturbing plot. The second series out in 2024 is as brilliant follows on from where series one left off.
    1 point
  11. Did never forget this post of Marcel, both dog lovers that we were.
    1 point
  12. The genuine ones are the scary ones. Your typical MAGA supporter is probably someone who hates Asians, Blacks and probably anyone who isn't white, loathes liberals, loves gods and guns, believes in conspiracy theories has little faith in democracy, and is willing to resort to violence to make their point. Many also seem to come from lower social demographics.
    1 point
  13. if this was a once off you could sort of put it down to a dumb shit, but things like this seem to occur on a weekly basis that side ot the pond. When America does Dumb it does it well
    1 point
  14. I’m on my 4th round of Covid…but we will go to the local temple here in San Francisco and send a few thoughts his way. 2 Things about Marcel, he always said “I’m Dutch, I don’t have a sense of humor” and 2, he always found me incredibly funny. So take that as you will. I am torn between saying something heart felt vs something funny but neither one will do justice to a man like Marcel. It was because of him that I became friends with LazyPhil and Chocolate Steve, which lead to free accommodation in L.A. and Cambridge UK. Other great friends like Cent, lead to free food and drinks, Tommie an odd out beer here and there so yeah, it adds up,They say you can’t put a price on friendship, but if you could, he’s saved me a small bundle. He will be missed and when ever I pass the Jelly beans at Costco, I’ll give him a wink.
    1 point
  15. I wish I could be there, last time I met Marcel was when we ran into each other on the Sukhumvit-flyover somewhere close to the Sofitel when he was on the way to work. Can´t remember, probably a year ago, maybe more. Not easy to realise somebody just does not exist any more. My thoughts are with his family.
    1 point
  16. Spaceman [2024 Movie] Half a year into his solo mission on the edge of the solar system, an astronaut concerned with the state of his life back on Earth is helped by an ancient creature he discovers in the bowels of his ship. Based on the absurdist Czech novel "Spaceman Of Bohemia" this is self indulgent art house that can seem exceedingly dull or bizarely unusual. Worth seeing when the mood for something odd beckons but ultimately meaningless.
    1 point
  17. I really liked him and we kept in contact through the years, so sorry for his family and particularly his children.
    1 point
  18. What I remember most about Woodstock Friday nights (apart from the super fun times with ya'll) were the far side cartoons pasted to the bathroom walls over the urinals. Made peeing a real pleasure. Thai resident 2001-2007
    1 point
  19. Such sad news. Marcel was the best. He came out to see Dee and I the last time we were in Bkk...a great friend and really made my time in Thailand so much better than it would have been without him. Hope everybody else is doing well.
    1 point
  20. Jigger Excellent news to hear that the board will live on in Khun Sanuk’s memory
    1 point
  21. Really horrible news. Marcel was a very decent fellow and genuinely one of the good guys.
    1 point
  22. Here is some information sent to me by a good friend of KS and I. My Thai is a little rusty, but I think it gives the dates/times of visitation, name/address for the temple, and cremation. I apologize for including KS's name, but under the circumstances I think it should be acceptable.
    1 point
  23. K.S. has passed, 56. Complications due to post Stroke surgery. A great loss. A fine friend. Always the good ones. Funeral/Cremation on Sunday at a local temple. ___ As to the board, I've no information on it's future at this time.
    1 point
  24. Attention fellow boardsmen! I predict an incoming stream of new members following a mentioning of this fine board by Khun Stickman this very Sunday. " The forum is back up and remains a place for long-time members to reminisce about the good old days, along with a regular dose of bickering. " To avoid TikTok addicts and other brainless subjects I may propose a minimum age of 65 years for access to keep standards high and maintain the average age level. Further a meaningful essay covering 5 gogo-bars which closed at least 25 years ago should be provided by any newcomer. ( For credibility)
    1 point
  25. Welcome to Masturbators Anonymous. I see a lot of the regular members came today. That's disappointing.
    1 point
  26. A woman goes to the gynecologist and says “I keep finding postage stamps from Costa Rica in my Vagina” The Doctor checked and said “Miss, they’re not postage stamps, they’re stickers off the bananas”
    1 point
  27. Factual history aside, this is very, very, good, an independent, well crafted and executed, Very non Hollywood, it is American, but is better than the usual. If you get a chance, watch it and see what a fine movie it is. Also if movies had to be factually correct they'd be documentaries and there would be no romance, action, car chase....
    1 point
  28. Monkey Man [2024 Movie] An anonymous young man in India unleashes a campaign of vengeance against the corrupt leaders who murdered his mother and continue to systematically victimize the poor and powerless. An adrenalin fueled debut action fest from this director/actor lead does what it says. Worth seeing for those into the genre.
    1 point
  29. Internet has been farked for a long time. I just found my way back.
    1 point
  30. How the World Can Deal With Trump Advice for Leaders Facing the Potential Return of “America First” By Malcolm Turnbull May 31, 2024 In this year of major elections around the world, none is more consequential than that in the United States on the first Tuesday in November. Polling suggests Donald Trump will enter the White House again in January 2025. If he does, he will return to office perhaps no wiser but certainly more experienced and more convinced than ever of his own exceptional genius. More ominously, he will be determined to rectify in his second term what he insists was the major failing of his first: that both his own advisers and Washington officialdom got in his way. Like most people, Trump is often wrong. Unlike most people, however, he is never in doubt. A powerful narcissistic self-belief has given him the strength to defy not just his many enemies but even reality itself. For four years, he has denied the outcome of the 2020 election and persuaded most of his party, and millions of Americans, to agree with him. There has never been such an effective and relentless gaslighter. As president, he sought to surround himself with people who told him what he wanted to hear. When they stopped doing so, they were quickly sent packing. If Trump returns to the Oval Office, his instinct to crush critics and stack the executive branch with yes men will likely get even stronger. He will characterize his domestic critics as political opponents if they are Democrats and as traitors if they are Republicans. Trump will feel as invincible in his triumph as a Roman emperor, but he won’t have a slave by his side whispering, “Remember, you are mortal.” Other leaders, especially those of countries that are close U.S. allies, have an opportunity and a responsibility to speak to Trump with a blunt but respectful candor that few of his advisers will be able to offer him. My own experience with Trump, when I was prime minister of Australia, is that he may not like strength and directness from other leaders, but after his rage subsides, he respects them for it. Around the world, leaders are once again fretting about how they can flatter Trump and avoid his wrath. But that pliant approach is not just the wrong strategy; it is the last thing the United States needs. A NEW NORMAL After Trump became president in 2017, most leaders around the world found themselves laboring under two incorrect assumptions. The first was that Trump’s wild rhetoric on the campaign trail would be abandoned there. The office and its responsibilities, some leaders believed, would constrain him. In November 2016, a few weeks after Trump’s surprising victory, the leaders of many of the world’s largest economies met in Lima at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. It was Barack Obama’s last summit as U.S. president, but it was Trump who overshadowed the whole APEC conference. By way of reassurance, many quoted former New York Governor Mario Cuomo’s remark: “You campaign in poetry. You govern in prose.” The line was repeated so often that a frustrated President Michelle Bachelet of Chile observed wryly that she had not seen many signs of poetry in the campaign that had just ended. Many leaders expected that Trump would become more typically “presidential” once he entered the White House. That was certainly the view held by Chinese President Xi Jinping. He told me at the APEC summit that he was relaxed about the new U.S. president. Xi thought Trump’s campaign rhetoric would have no bearing on how he would govern, and most significantly, the Chinese president believed the U.S. system would not allow Trump to act in a way that undermined the American national interest. And that was generally the consensus view: the institutions of government would keep Trump grounded in a conventional, administrative reality. His colorful campaign would be followed by business, more or less, as usual. Trump in office was, if anything, wilder and more erratic than he had been on the campaign trail. Four extraordinary years finished with him encouraging a mob to storm the U.S. Capitol in a brazen attempt to overthrow the constitutional transfer of power to the new president. If Trump returns to the White House in 2025, only the willfully deluded could imagine that a second Trump administration would be less volatile and alarming than the first. DON’T GIVE IN The second misapprehension world leaders held was that the right way to deal with Trump was how Benjamin Disraeli, the nineteenth-century British prime minister, advised people to deal with royalty: to use flattery and “lay it on with a trowel.” Of course, men like Trump invite sycophancy. They use their power and caprice to encourage others to tell them what they want to hear. But this is precisely the wrong way to deal with Trump, or any other bully. Whether in the Oval Office or on the playground, giving in to bullies encourages more bullying. The only way to win the respect of people such as Trump is to stand up to them. But that defiance brings with it great risks. Almost all world leaders hope to have a good, or at least cordial, relationship with the United States. And they know that if they have a falling out with the U.S. president, there is no guarantee that their own people, let alone their own media, would take their side. This is particularly so in countries where a right-wing, so-called conservative media generally support Trump and his style of politics. Trump’s biggest echo chamber in the United States is the Fox News network, owned by Rupert Murdoch, who also controls extensive media assets in Australia and the United Kingdom. When Trump became president, I had been prime minister of Australia for nearly 18 months. I had never done business with him but knew a lot of people who had, and more important, I had dealt with many men like Trump—including big, dominating billionaires and media barons such as Conrad Black, Jimmy Goldsmith, Bob Maxwell, Murdoch, and Kerry Packer. So when my collision with Trump came, I was shaken but not surprised. In 2016, I had reached an agreement with Obama that a number of asylum seekers who had sought to enter Australia irregularly by boat could be settled in the United States, subject to the usual security vetting. Australia had learned over the years that the only way to stop human smuggling was to ensure that nobody who came unlawfully by boat could settle in our country. This policy had been strictly applied under Liberal Prime Minister John Howard, who held the office from 1996 to 2007, but was modified under his Labor successors Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard. The result was a dramatic increase in human smuggling. When Rudd returned as prime minister for a few months, in late 2013, he tried to reinstate the Howard-era policies, and as a consequence, several thousand asylum seekers were intercepted and detained in Papua New Guinea and Nauru. The Liberals returned to government in October 2013 under Tony Abbott, whom I replaced as prime minister in September 2015. Our governments and all those that succeeded us have followed a strict zero-tolerance approach to human smuggling. And it has worked. But there were still the asylum seekers who had been diverted to Papua New Guinea and Nauru. If they were brought to Australia, I feared, the flow of boats would start up again. So the deal with Obama was a practical and humane solution. In return, Australia had agreed to accept some very difficult immigration cases for the United States. The only way to win Trump’s respect is to stand up to him. From the moment Trump was elected, my government sought assurances that the deal would be honored, and we had every indication it would be. But then, just before a scheduled call with the president a few days after his inauguration, Vice President Mike Pence called Julie Bishop, Australia’s foreign minister, and Michael Flynn, Trump’s national security adviser, called his counterpart in my office, Justin Bassi, to say that under no circumstances should I raise this issue on the call because Trump would not honor the agreement we had entered into with his predecessor. I did raise the issue. On the call, I told Trump that Australia expected the United States to stick to its word. Trump was furious, raging that the deal was a terrible one, that it would kill him politically, that Obama had been a fool to do it. It was daunting to be yelled at by the president of the United States, but I stood my ground. By the end of the call, Trump had, with great reluctance, agreed to go along with it. He ended by telling me it was the most unpleasant call he had had that day. A call to Putin, on the other hand, had been pleasant by comparison, he said. Trump made it clear that he was proceeding with the deal unhappily. But he also accepted, as I had suggested, that he could honor the deal his predecessor had made without endorsing it as a good one. Details of the call were leaked in Washington, eventually with a transcript, all designed to show that Trump went along with the deal with reluctance. There was enormous anxiety in Canberra about how this would play out. Would he actually honor the deal? As it turned out, he did. Would this row adversely affect other aspects of the relationship? And most important, would Trump bear a grudge? We met again in May 2017, only four months later, and by this time, he was joking with me and our wives about the refugee deal, complaining that he had agreed to it but in the way he might have about paying too much for a building. I was “a tough negotiator,” he told his wife, Melania Trump. “Just like you, Donald,” she replied. A combination of character and circumstance allowed the relationship between Trump and me, as leaders, to get off on the right foot. By standing my ground, arguing my case, and not backing down, I had not only persuaded him to stick to the deal I had made with Obama but also won his respect. MAKE THE CASE Most presidents and prime ministers delegate considerable authority, formally and informally, to their advisers and officials. Meetings with foreign leaders are negotiated well in advance by ambassadors and officials. The outcome of the meeting is as scripted as the talking points. The Trump White House did not work like that. Trump was the only decision-maker. Staff could advise him however they pleased, but most didn’t last long anyway. The only word that mattered was Trump’s, and he did not like being scripted—in any event, he rarely read from the script. He was the dealmaker, so he wanted to do the deal, on the spot, in the room. In my experience with Trump, this meant that ambassadors and foreign ministers, no matter how capable, could offer much less assistance or influence. The key relationship lay between Trump and the foreign leader. This practice poses both a challenge and an opportunity for foreign leaders trying to gain traction in the White House. It means that their ambassadors are less influential. On the other hand, if it is possible to persuade Trump that it is in his interest to change course, he will. But to do that, a foreign leader has to win Trump’s respect and make a strong case. I observed such a scenario when I handled another difficult issue that threatened ties between Canberra and Washington during Trump’s first term: trade. In March 2018, Trump announced he was going to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports of 25 percent and ten percent, respectively. Not only was Trump keen on these tariffs, but so were some of his key advisers, including Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. Trump’s views on trade were simplistic. But they were strongly held. He viewed a trade deficit as evidence that the United States was losing and a trade surplus as a sign it was winning. He gave Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a hard time on the U.S. trade deficit with Japan, as he did other allied leaders, but his greatest anxiety was the huge trade deficit with China. I had two arguments for Trump on tariffs, and he listened to both, despite resistance from his key trade officials. First, Australia exported a modest quantity of steel to the West Coast of the United States only because the cost of shipping steel, almost all for roofing, across the Pacific was less than half the cost of shipping it to California from steel makers in the Midwest and on the East Coast. A 25 percent tariff on Australian steel would not make U.S. steel more competitive on the West Coast; it would simply raise the price of steel roofs. We went through the numbers several times. He knew the building industry, and he knew the product, and he listened more attentively than usual. Second, I said that if Trump’s argument for tariffs was to correct trade terms with other countries that were not fair and reciprocal, why should he impose any tariff on Australian exports? Australia and the United States had maintained a free trade agreement for years. The United States also enjoyed a large trade surplus with Australia. “No tariffs and no quotas,” I said to him. “In fact, it cannot get any better. And a massive $25 billion surplus in your favor. Truth be told, you have the best possible trade deal ever with Australia.” If the United States imposed tariffs or an import quota on Australia, with whom it had the best possible trade deal, it would be seen as doing so simply because it could. “People will be able to say,” I told Trump, that “‘the Aussies give you the best possible deal and they still get a quota. So this is not about fair and reciprocal trade at all.’” We had several direct discussions on the tariff question, both in person and on the phone. I wrote a pithy letter to Trump summarizing our arguments, which Matt Pottinger, one of his key national security advisers, helpfully read to him. He listened and he changed his mind because he was persuaded that it was in his interest to do so. SPEAKING TRUTH TO TRUMP The caricature of Trump as a one-dimensional, irrational monster is so entrenched that many forget that he can be, when it suits him, intelligently transactional. Like most bullies, he will bend others to his will when he can, and when he cannot, he will try to make a deal. But to get to the deal-making stage, Trump’s counterparts have to stand up to the bullying first. Foreign leaders who need to get business done with Trump should be able to do so, but they will need to deal with him directly and persuade him why their proposal is a good deal for him. Leave the sentimental stuff about alliances and friendship for the press conferences. Trump’s question is always, “What’s in it for me?” His calculus is both political and commercial, but it is very focused. That should be no surprise—“America first” is his explicit slogan. A Trump returned to the White House, convinced of his own genius, and with the evidence of an election win to prove it, will be surrounded by more yes men and sycophants than ever. In that environment, who will be prepared to tell him what he doesn’t want to hear? The leaders of the countries that are the United States’ friends and allies will be among the very few who can speak truthfully to Trump. He can shout at them, embarrass them, even threaten them. But he cannot fire them. Their character, courage, and candor may be the most important aid they can render to the United States in a second age of Trump. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/united-states/how-world-can-deal-trump
    0 points
This leaderboard is set to Bangkok/GMT+07:00
×
×
  • Create New...