Daily Archives: March 7, 2012

This and that from re Thai r ment. June 18, 2010

This is the so-called slow season in Thailand, heat, monsoon storms and a dearth of tourists. All three are ok especially the last. Not that I have anything special against tourists, but with their declining numbers the prices decline as well. It also appears as though everyone has lost about 100 pounds. I guess it is good for the Thai environment if not so for the economy.

I plan to travel to Bangkok on Sunday to handle some business at the American Embassy and then I am off to Paradise in the Mountains for a few days. It seems as though Hayden is having some minor problems and since SWAC is not there, I will try to help out. I will probably return depressed.

Nothing on the Thai political front of note. Even “Red Shirt Gossip” network has been silent.

Not too far away, it looks like the “Great Game” is afoot again in the too many consonant Stans. For those who have not taken world history in a while, in the 18th, 19th and early part of the 20th Centuries, Russia, Great Britain and China engaged in an extended game of “Spy vs. Spy” over control of the passes through the high mountains between north and south Asia, a portion of which was called the Hindu Kush. It seems they are at it again except the US has taken Great Britain’s place at the table.

The latest flare up on the road to Armageddon is in the what I call the lesser Stans, Kyrgyz, Uzbek and Tajik ( As opposed to the Greater Stans. Afghan, Pak and Kazakh–I do not know whether Turkmen is a Greater or Lesser Stan).

Old Joe Stalin, the almost forgotten beloved “Uncle Joe,” did not have enough white Russians to resettle on this portion of the Russian Border to protect mother Russia from the Turk or whomever. Remember at this time 20 million or so of them were busy being slaughtered in the most recent Slavic-Teuton struggle over who would have the right to kill the jews in the Pale. So crafty old Uncle Joe took a large fertile valley, the only piece of land in the area worth anything since most of the rest was mountain. and gave it to the Uzbeks, except that the Uzbeks lived on the other-side of the mountains and the only way into the valley was through a very long narrow pass that that scamp Uncle Joe gave to the Tajik and to add to the hilarity of the situation, Joe the Comedian gave the foothills surrounding the valley to the Kyrgyz who although they could look down on the Uzbeks in their happy valley from their towns on the foothills they could not defend those same towns because they also lived on the other-side of the mountains from the valley on the side opposite the Uzbeks .

Now the USA , assuming the role of merry old England in the Greater Stans of Afghan and Pak (The role of winning the battles and ultimately losing the war) decides to put its supply bases in the land of the Kyrgyz over the mountains from Happy Valley and make many of the Kyrgyz rich. The Kyrgyz than take that money and begin a pogrom against the Uzbeks living in the foothills overlooking their brethren working their farms below. The new Kyrgyz government although gaining power through a nationalist revolution claims surprise at the continuing turmoil. They also need help to stop the pogrom before the Uzbeks decide to assist their oppressed cousins across the border.

What to do? What to do? They cannot ask the Americans because the Americans being the new English do not see the Lesser Stans as in their interest and it would piss off the Russians to wake up with the Anglo-americans acting on their turf so to speak, so they have asked the Russians for help. What happens next? Will China, with its already unhappy Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in its western provinces feel threatened? What the hell is everyone fighting for anyway? The great game was about trade routes. Is this all about mineral resources? Is it another man-thing? Stay tuned for as the world turns.

Meanwhile in the Greater Stans the Nato forces are engaged in a war of attrition to punish and retaliate against the ex Afghan government for allowing their country to shelter a tall skinny ex CIA operative lunatic on dialysis while he was plotting to send citizens of an ally of the US using funds obtained from that same ally to launch a terrorist attack on the US for the purpose of creating enough turmoil the US would respond as Russia did in the same area and destroy itself economically by spending too much money on war and the things of war.

Meanwhile,….. is it getting hotter or is it just me?……

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. June 13, 2010

I few of you have wondered why I have not written in a while. I thank you for the reminder and for helping me break from my ennui.

I am not sure why this past week or so I have been so lethargic. It could be that the heat keeps me indoors for most of the day. I have become a bit of a recluse sitting on my balcony in Paradise by the Sea and staring out across the landscape to the Outskirts of Hell. Somedays, I promise myself to travel those two miles so that I may fall from grace, but in the end I choose to watch re-runs of Law and Order or the Sci-fi Channel which seem to be the only english language stations with programming other than news.

The news channels are relatively bereft of american news. Except for Faux News, my choices are Al Jazeera, a French station that reads the news in english with a heavy French accent, a Japanese english language news channel, one from Australia that I can understand no better than I can the french channel. Every now and then there is a BBC and CNN broadcast but they are not regular broadcasts for some reason. I have been surprised that of them all, Al Jazeera seemed the most professional and its production quality was second only to Fox Noise.

As for my writing I have been a little disappointed in the response to my political diary on the left-wing blog. After a promising start my readership began to fall off. I guess my harangues began to become tiresome. So like all entertainers, I decided to try to become more outrageous in an effort to recapture my fading fan base(all 20 or 30 of them).

With the recent contretemps on the high seas off of Israel, I, like everyone else, thought I found a subject on which I could burnish my reputation for sharp-eyed insight and analysis. And, although my analysis was confirmed by later reports and almost everyone else writing for the blog on the subject readership skyrocketed, mine remained mired in mediocrity.

So, undaunted, realizing that those events occurred not too far from Megiddo where the final battle of Armageddon is to occur, I wrote a short piece on Marching to Armageddon that demonstrated clearly that, as many in the previous administration prayed for and predicted, we were clearly entering the final days. This produced the comment from one reader “So what, we all have to die sometime. Hahahahahahaha!.”

Undeterred by this response, my next post contained the argument that the problems affecting the world were caused a massive human induced testosterone poisoning of the globe (Global testosteroning) occasioned by the existence of too many men in the global environment. From an evolutionary standpoint, I maintained, the world would be much better off if they were reduced to only bout 1% of the population. I then pointed out some of the improvements that could be expected with the reduction in these mobile testosterone emitters, like fewer BBQ’s resulting in less meat consumed and… well you know where that is gong. I included other similarly appropriate examples. This received a relative outpouring of comments (10) from irate men whose sole argument seemed to be that women could be just as bad as men. They then usually mentioned Sarah Palin and Ann Coulter as examples of the evil to which women can aspire. Now given the ambiguity of Ann’s sex, I have to dismiss that example since after all she may only be in disguise. But as for Sarah, even though I am no fan of hers, as the exemplar of evil in the same class as Vlad the Impaler, Hitler and all those paragons of maleness, really now……

Anyway, since then I have temporarily halted publication of my submittals to that esteemed blog while I reconsider this career path. Nobody understands me……

Ciao

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. June 3, 2010

Despite the wonders of my newly invented calendar, I have begun to lose track of time.

The Thai political situation has devolved into posturing. Abhsit the Unready, the current prime minister beat back an attempt by the Red Shirt party in the Thai legislature to force a no confidence vote over the government’s handling of the protests. Abhisit the Unwilling is now playing coy with the promise he made during the protest to hold new elections before his term expires.

Meanwhile, Charlern the New Pretender, the leader of a faction of the Red Shirts who strategically withheld support for the protestors during the riots, has now moved into the position of the most likely Prime Minister should elections ever be held and prepares for his presumed ascendency.

And what of Thaksin the Omnipresent, the deposed prime minister and the putative cause of it all? Well, the government with great fanfare branded him a terrorist and threatened to contact Interpol to find him so that he could be extradited and stand trial in Thailand as a terrorist. Subsequently, the threats have mostly disappeared from the press as the government promises to study the issue. And of the man himself, Thaksin the Nonpareil what of him? He is reputed to be purchasing an island off the coast of Montenegro from where he may settle and like Napoleon at Elba to plot his eventual return. Sic transit gloria.

And of the Red Shirt masses little is heard. My masseuse, however, belongs to some type of cell phone group called “Red Shirt Gossip”. Her phone rings every 10 minutes or so with the latest “gossip”. She refuses to tell me what it is. Very annoying.

Ciao

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. May 27, 2010

Having nothing really better to write about, I thought that I will describe my typical day. I say this up front so that those of you that feel inclined to can press your delete key now.

As for the rest of you, I start my day at about 7AM and try to be back in bed by about 9:30 to 10 PM. I spend between 7 and eight hours of the day on what I call “work”. Actually, work to me now is what is left over after deducting the time I spend sleeping and taking naps, eating, staring at the walls or the ocean, swimming or engaged in various erotic pursuits. This latter for me, at my age, generally consists of surreptitiously staring at the tall thin blond russian women sunning themselves by the pool. This activity always makes me contemplate the wonders of metamorphosis (and no, not cockroaches). How amazing is it, that these tall thin creatures, obviously in their larvae stage can in a few short years in their adult stage change into the 300 pound monstrosities, lying snoring and drooling on the deck chairs near by. Do young people snore and drool when they sleep? I forget.

Maybe the 300 pound beached manatees are really the cocoon stage and just as the sun begins to set, giving everything a rosy glow, they will split open and out come the tall, thin beautiful blond women (and yes men too) and they will turn, wink at me, shake themselves off and walk off into the sunset. I have been too long in the sun. Time to get back to work.

During my work hours, I attend to my email correspondence like this and other things. I work a bit on the diary that I write for a so-called radical liberal blog where I gleefully warn those dear hearts of the ravening hordes of tea drinkers with their photographs of the President sporting a Hitler-like mustache and their “We are all Arizonans Now” signs, stalking the streets and by-ways of the country searching for them. “Get up,” I tell them. “Put out your joints, go out into the streets and organize.” “But please don’t refer to yourselves as some namby-pamby ‘coffee party’. Use some imagination dammit. Call yourselves the ‘Crack Cocaine Party’ or the ‘Crossing the Border Illegally Party’. You are liberals for christ sakes. Get a backbone. Get a life. Get a job”.

When I am not rabble-rousing, I some times work on the calendar I invented. In my calendar all the days of the week every month fall on the same day. So, the first day of the month is always on Sunday and the seventh day is always on Saturday. And every special calendar day, like one’s birthday, falls on the same day of the week and the same day of the month every year. And Winter Solstice is aways the first of January and summer always begins on the first of July. Of course, it has no practical application but I amuse myself with it. I now am trying to figure out how I can personally use it. For example today is Thursday, May 27 in the standard Gregorian calendar but it is Tuesday, June 3 on my calendar and June 3 will always fall on Tuesday.

One quirk of the calendar is that every year following the last day of the year and before the first day of the new year there is a day that falls outside of the calendar, outside any month and any week. It is a free day. You can call it anything you like. I call mine “Joe’s Day.”

I thought it would be nice if on that day, if my calendar were ever adopted, no one would be compelled to work. And at the same time no one would be entitled to receive pay for work they do perform. So, we all would have to consider volunteering for the jobs that need to be done that day. I like volunteering for hopeless tasks, like becoming a traffic control officer in downtown Pattaya for the day, or working as a volunteer on the Palin for President in 2012 campaign although now that I think about it, I probably worked on the Arlen Specter campaign. That’s enough, I need a nap.

Ciao..

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. May 25, 2010

I did not mean for my last post to spark a controversy. I only was trying to thank those (like my daughter Jessica) who expressed concern for my safety . I did not mean to imply that they or anyone had criticized the subject matter of the emails. My bad.

On the other-hand, I am pleased to learn that there are those who read this stuff and feel passionate about it.

You know, there are a lot of reasons why I write these emails. One of them is that being alone here as I am, seeing your names in the “To” box makes me feel that in some small way you are here and I am talking to each of you. Another reason is that I often get bored writing in my journal, like earlier this afternoon when I recorded how long it took me to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Yes, old habits die hard, even though the cost of obtaining american peanut butter and jelly raises the price of the sandwich to rival a lobster diner.

Of course, I do not write everything that I record in my journal. For example, as a parent whose children and grandchildren are recipients of these emails, it had been impressed upon me that in order to be a good parent, I should never let my children know, that I use foul language, that I have sex of any sort, that I doubt just about everything that I do and that I know next to nothing about child-rearing. As for the last, those of you who are parents probably, like me, had the worst teachers imaginable, their own parents who in most cases married too young to know anything and had to muddle through it like everyone else. Or in the case of my parents who were so poor and ill-educated they had to fumble through old world nostrums to figure out which fit the new order they found themselves in.

Anyway, I am no longer your reporter from the front, since there no longer is a front. Each of the contestants have retreated to their respective corners (and in Thailand there are a lot of corners) plotting their next moves. And make no mistake about it there will be more moves. Rumors of new demonstrations and crackdowns flood the daily press reports.

Recently in the english language press, there have been a number of articles calling for the government to crack down on the police for their alleged sympathy and assistance to the Red Shirts. This reflects the ongoing conflict between the police and the military in Thai society. They along with the Monarchy, the government and the Chinese-Thai business community make up the more or less independent institutions that govern Thailand (no checks and balances here).

The police resent the military because its officer corps are reasonably well compensated and comfortably housed on their military bases and the military has never had to fight a real foreign invader since almost the beginning of the creation of modern Thailand, while the police must confront corruption (often their own), politics, violence and criminal gangs on a daily basis for very low pay. The resentment and jealousy increases by the fact that the military officer corps is mostly immune from responsibility to the police and the country’s court system for any civil crimes that they may commit.

Until this fundamental conflict between the forces of order in the country is resolved one can expect to see the Red Shirts, the Yellow Shirts and the other institutions of Thai society try to take advantage of that conflict for their own advantage.

In short, little has been resolved except that now one can get to most of the major shopping centers in downtown Bangkok to shop.

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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