Posts Tagged With: Capitalism

This and that from re Thai r ment, by 3Th. October 1, 2011


1. September 28, 1941: German troops massacre 40,000 Ukrainian Jews at Babi Yar.

Let us not forget the consequences of hate. Without a doubt everyone has had ancestors slaughtered for little more reason than their racial, religious, ethnic heritage, migration in search of a better life or simply because they stood in the way.

2. Statistics: Statistically you are likelier to be executed by Rick Perry than hit by a falling satellite.

And, I bet most of you are more terrorized of falling space junk than the Messiah from Texas. You shouldn’t be.


I travelled by train to San Jose to have lunch with my good friend Bill. The day was warm and sunny and the train ride was pleasant and boring enough that I slept through most of it. Bill met me at the station and we drove in his new black Jag to a nearby Italian restaurant called “Paesano’s”. It is owned and operated by a man from Palermo Sicily called Pino. The food is a pastiche of dishes from several regions in Italy with an emphasis on the south of the country and adjusted for American tastes. We drank a bottle of Nero d’Avola wine from the area on the island near my mother’s native town. The food was quite good and I suggest that if you find yourself in San Jose and hungry for good Italian food this place will fit the bill.

After lunch we drove over to a new Restaurant/night club called “Myth” in which Bill is part owner. It is a very nice place that serves Greek food during the day and is a night-club on certain nights, with a live jazz group on Saturdays. What I especially like about it is that about one half of the place is out doors, for dining and partying al fresco. It apparently has become quite popular.

Bill and I sat at the bar and ordered some Greek wine. They had no “Retsina” so I ordered a white and Bill had a red. The bartender was a tall attractive young woman named Nichole. For reasons that I refuse to examine, I have a soft spot for woman bartenders especially those with tattoos. Nicole did not have any tattoos that I could see.

While we were drinking, a woman entered the place, walked up to the bar and offered to buy us a drink if we could give her four quarters for the parking meter. Bill and I rummaged through our pockets and found the change but declined the drink. She returned, sat a few stools down from us, ordered her own drink and told us that she was waiting for a friend.

Bill and I resumed our discussion that just happened to be about Cairo and smoking a Hookah. Our new friend then spoke up and said something like, “You’re talking about smoking. I like that.” Now, although reference to smoking can have many connotations not to mention meanings, Bill and I assumed she was speaking about Marijuana. Bill pointed out that we were discussing tobacco in a Hookah and I opined that perhaps she may have been thinking not about tobacco in a hookah but about rolling some weed in cigarette paper. “No,” she replied, “I prefer my smoke coming out of a pipe. This is California after all.”

Yes, it certainly is.

Bill had some client meetings to attend so he dropped me back at the train station and I made my way home.




Chapter: Because I can no longer remember the chapter numbers, I have decided to start naming the chapters rather than numbering them. This one is called “Meg.”

Meg was naked, her steroid enhanced, chiseled body poised kneeling above him on the bed.

Outside the room the surf at Half Mood Bay rumbled, drowning out the sounds of automobiles on Highway One located about a hundred yards behind her home.

She lowered her head and with her tongue, gently explored Jack’s one eye. Ray moaned slightly and drew in his breath, She slowly licked the head and then Jack’s eye again. Then, placing her lips lightly on the tip of his penis, she gradually drew it into her mouth until her lips slid over the corona and lingered in the sulcus while she flicked her tongue again over the glans, then she proceeded down the shaft of his cock. He moaned again, his muscles going rigid as he entwined his fingers in her hair pulling it violently out and down while he thrust up forcing his cock deep into her mouth.

She loved the silky smoothness of the skin of his member, soft like velvet with the iron-hard prick beneath. She liked the pain as he pulled on her hair. She liked the ache in her sphincter where an hour or so before he brutalized it, thrusting deep within her. For the entire night they had gone without break from bed to shower to floor in an unending symphony of brutality and passion.

His moans grew louder as he drew her faster and deeper on him until with a sudden thrust the hot, bitter, salty brew sprayed into her mouth as he spasmed and then relaxed, his fingers falling from her hair.

As his breathing slowed and his erection wilted, she moved up and across his body bestowing light kisses on his body as she passed until she lay alongside him, her head nestled in the crook of his arm with her lips pressed against his neck.

She lay there a few moments, thinking first of Ray and languid ache in her that he brought on, than drifting off to confront the disturbing specter of Stephanie. Stephanie, her beautiful porcelain white skinned Stephanie. The night she died she had called Meg. Told her she couldn’t spend the night alone in that house and she was coming over the hill to spend it in Meg’s arms. She sounded upset, as she should be, not because of her asshole husband Sam’s death but because of its violence. But she never arrived. Then Meg got the call about the crash at Devil’s Slide.

When she arrived at the site, she found out it was Steph. The idiot medical examiner claimed it was an accident or suicide. Meg knew that it could not be. Devil’s slide was not on the route from Steph’s home to Meg’s place. Ray also expressed doubts about the official reported cause of Stephanie’s death.

She felt his breathing slow. He was drifting off into sleep.

“Not yet,” she whispered. “Once more for me.”

He smiled and with his eyes still closed he pulled her up towards him. She straddled his head with her knees. Her hands she pressed against the wall behind the bed. He gently ran his tongue along the sides of her clitoris and labia. She could feel her wetness. Her muscles tightened. He held her cheeks tightly. A finger fluttered around her aching asshole, prying it open and slipping the tip in and out. Suddenly he withdrew his tongue and sucked her steroid swollen clit into his mouth hard while plunging his finger deep into her ass. She felt the rush of blood and warmth spread throughout her body. Her muscles tightened until she became as rigid as a granite statue. As the flood of ecstasy swept from the fringes her body and plunged toward her cunt, she raised her face up toward the ceiling and let out a deep guttural scream.

a. I didn’t know that:

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people, so they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, thread it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell.

Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (“the graveyard shift”) to listen for the bell; thus someone could be,”Saved by the Bell’‘ or considered a ”Dead Ringer.’
b. What Adam Smith (considered by some as the “father” of Capitalism) Really Said:

“All for ourselves, and nothing for other people, seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind.”
Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations [Book III, Chapter IV, p. 444].

c. From God’s Mouth to your Ears:

“They must be dividing the spoils they took: there must be a damsel or two for each man, Spoils of dyed cloth as Sisera’s spoil, an ornate shawl or two for me in the spoil.”

(Judges 5:30 NAB)

Well, there you are, God is good to his guys, especially if they are very good at raping and killing.

d. Profiles in presidential courage:

e. American Exceptionalism:

” . . . the only way to drive the US from the Muslim world and defeat its satraps is by drawing Americans into a series of small but expensive wars that would ultimately bankrupt them.”
Osama Bin Ladin

Of course, no American government or political party would be so dumb as to fall for that.


“Our riches, being in our brains, die with us…unless of course someone chops off our head, in which case, we won’t need them anyway.”
W. A. Mozart

Wolfie, stick to your music.


“I would say any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military.”
Rick Santorum

Huh! An army of eunuchs? Will we restore the draft or ask for volunteers? What would happen to our military if this man became president? Remember, it was Genghis (Wolfie) Mozart, owner of the candy store in the village that I grew up in, who said, “An army that can’t fuck is an army that kills its own officers.”



(I bet a lot of people believe that the oil companies are holding on to all this cash so that they can do something good for them.)

Categories: October 2011 through December 2011 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

This and that from re Thai r ment, by 3Th. 22 Capt. Coast 0001 (May 10, 2012)



Since it rained in Bangkok last week, the skies have been somewhat overcast and the temperature cooler (but see B.1 below).

I continue to spend my mornings at the health club and my afternoons in my apartment playing with my computer. My exercise effort and reduced my food intake has a resulted in my weight dropping to a level I have not experienced for over a decade. Good for me!

Alas, LM mentioned that the hotel management may close down the health club and consolidate its massage services into the Hotel Spa. The exercise facilities and lockers will be available then only for hotel guests. The reason they are considering this is that health club membership has fallen off greatly as members leave for the newer health club facilities in other hotels. The only part of the business that seems to be growing is the club’s increasing popularity with middle age and older women seeking massages with happy endings from the male masseurs working there. Surprisingly, and annoyingly for LM, many of the remaining elderly male members (not a joke) as well as the increasing number of Muslim hotel guests seek out their happy endings with the masseurs as well.

Recently I learned that Hayden would not be going to spend the summer in San Diego with the man he does not like. This man, by the way, is in effect a federal government policeman. At one time he served in the US embassy in BKK and along with his coworkers was known to be a frequent customer of similar services to those the notorious Secret Service officers were alleged to have bought in Cartagena.

During a trial in the US regarding an American citizen residing in SE Asia who may have violated US law, the principle evidence was supplied by a translator with whom it is alleged the arresting officer, our man from San Diego and previously BKK, was having an affair at the time. The conviction has been appealed because of this gross indiscretion.

It seems, our man from San Diego, had refused to agree to return Hayden to his mother after the summer was over so she decided not to send him there. Whether this is a good thing or a bad thing I do not know. But in any case, Hayden may spend most of his vacation in the south of Thailand or in Italy or in the US while his mother spends it in the north of Thailand or somewhere he is not.

In any event, I may be returning to the US in early June, or I may be going to Italy or I may stay here.


1. Heat wave and stuff:

The Bangkok Post reported that the average daily temperature in Bangkok during April was over 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Bangkok also has one of the lowest ratios of green space per resident in the world; Three square meters per person versus thirty-nine square meters per person average in the rest of the world’s major cities.

Thus it is in Bangkok that not only are you uncomfortable because it is hot, but you cannot breathe as well; nor does one have shade trees to walk under.

2. Indonesia; leading the way?

By 2014, Indonesia plans to ban exports of raw minerals in order to encourage local processing to add value and thereby redistribute the benefits of the country’s natural resources from foreigners to Indonesians.

I actually like this approach. Why shouldn’t countries (the US included) prohibit export of certain raw materials? It simply means that those with the money have to build factories in those countries producing the raw materials, thereby creating more higher paying jobs for its citizens.

3. China comes back down to earth:

In December, in one of my “This and that…” posts, I predicted that China’s economy would stumble during the early part of 2012. A recent HSBC survey shows manufacturing in China has contracted in April for the sixth straight month.

Hooray for me!

4. Lese Majesté:

Recently a 60-year-old man, affectionately referred to as “Uncle SMS” who a year ago had been jailed for 20 years for violating Thailand’s Lese Majesté law that prohibits anyone from insulting the Royal Family died of liver cancer. According to news reports he had been convicted for sending four SMS messages from his mobile phone to a government official that were deemed in violation of Lese Majesté laws. I have never seen copies of the messages but from reports it appears they were neither threatening nor directly critical of the monarchical institution. Uncle SMS claimed he had never sent the messages and that someone else had sent them after stealing his phone number. Uncle SMS requested bail 8 times and was rebuffed. Despite the fact that his tumor was obvious, the judge in denying bail opined that the accusations were serious and his illness not life threatening.

It should be noted that the King himself has said that Lese Majeste laws are unnecessary and that only through criticism from citizens could he know if he were doing a good job or not. Those who claim they most love the King and respect the Monarchy, however, refused to pay any attention to his request, as they also refuse to pay any attention to any of his requests if they clash with their political or financial goals. But they nevertheless, love and respect him with all their might. God help those who do not love and respect him as well as they do.


Who hid the Capitalist?

Capitalism arose when some people (eventually called Capitalists) joined together to pool their money to invest in a usually short-term enterprise like backing a trading venture to send lower cost goods somewhere where someone was willing to pay a lot more for them. Later they invested in things like brick factories and coal mines. Capitalists risked their invested money (and more if they had to pay off the debts of the venture should it fail) unless they were able to buy insurance.

This then was what originally we called Capitalism.

Government had little or nothing to do with the system except to keep general order. For example, you did not want people breaking into the coffee houses where these transactions were taking place shooting the capitalists and taking their money. This governmental activity, since government had to do it anyway to protect the king and his ascendency, did not cost much and taxes were relatively low.

Then an interesting thing happened. Governments of the time (usually Kings) saw a good way to raise money for things they wanted to do (like own the world) without increasing taxes. (Governments do this all the time and usually in the long run they get in trouble for it.) They told those people with money to invest, that if they invested it into a company called a “public corporation” set up by the government to carry out a specific task (e.g. Take someone else’s land establish colonies and import slaves to do the work) they will not be liable for any more money than the money they invest.

Corporations were not people. They were creations of the State. This was a prime example of government intruding into operation of the market by capping risk so that investors into corporations had a government created advantage over other capitalists. Investors into corporations were therefore not capitalists per se but could be called something like “corporatists.” (Why don’t Libertarians call for abolishment of the most fundamental intrusion of government into the so-called free market, limitation of financial risk represented by the corporate form?)

Corporatism is not Capitalism.

Another thing; people with money often did not wish to risk it in an investment where there was a chance that it could be lost. Instead, they found other people who needed the money and were willing to give the person with money something they owned of equal value that he then held until the money was returned. The person with money charged for the transaction. The transaction fee eventually was called interest, the man with the money the lender or the creditor and the man who needed the money, the debtor.

For a number of reasons, most of them bad, the lenders got the governments of the time to agree to use their swords and later guns to force the debtor to pay his debts and thereby freeing the lender from the difficulty of transferring and storing the debtors goods as well as the risk inherent in selling it should the debtor not repay the loan on time. But, the lender still charged interest for the less costly and risky transaction. What it ment was that the lender was able to transfer a significant amount of the cost of the transaction on to the general government and still keep the profits, arguing that the taxes (paid by everyone, but which the lenders usually strenuously objected to) charged by government made up for it. The enforcement of debt obligations, courts and the like added to the expense of general government.

The bond or the debt market is not capitalism and its denizens on Wall Street and elsewhere are not capitalists. If they were then they should not be asking government to shield them from risk (or at least they should be willing to pay their taxes).


Removed for revision and reflection.




The Federal Reserve was a Republican idea.
Social Security is solvent through 2038.
God is a particle.
George W. Bush held hands with the King of Saudi Arabia.
Evolution is real.
Since 1980 Republican administrations increased the national debt more than Democrats have.
The Earth is 4.54 billion years old.
Fox News is owned by an Australian and has a Saudi prince as a major investor.
Jesus was a Jew.
The current corporate tax rate is the lowest in 60 years
In 2011, the US became a net exporter of oil products — for the first time since 1949 — earning record profits for oil companies yet Americans pay almost $4 or more for a gallon of gas.
In Venezuela people pay less for fuel than for bottled water.
In Turkmenistan drivers are entitled to 120 gallons of free gasoline per month.
In Bahrain, which has almost no oil, the price of gasoline is $.78 per gallon.
Venezuela, Turkmenistan and Bahrain, as well as most other countries with low gasoline prices own their oil companies.

Therefore private oil companies are good for the environment. They keep gasoline prices high and thereby discourage driving, producing less CO2 resulting in lowering the greenhouse gasses and reducing the effects of climate change. Did you ever wonder why ownership of oil production by the Saudi government is not considered socialism by most conservatives but in Venezuela’s case it is?


A. What “Occupy” is all about and what it really wants:

1. It is time to return to the good old days when the US led the world in high wage work.

2. Perhaps it also is time our executives should get paid salaries similar to those paid to executives in countries whose corporate executives are eating our lunch?

What is even more amazing is that these same executives whose companies are steadily losing market share to more frugal executive paying foreign corporations often blame their relatively poor performance on US government interference while at the same time warning the rest of us to be wary of adopting the “socialist” policies existing in the countries whose corporate executives manage to compete for market share better than they do.

B. E.L. Doctorow: “Primer on Unexceptionalism.”

TO achieve unexceptionalism, the political ideal that would render the United States indistinguishable from the impoverished, traditionally undemocratic, brutal or catatonic countries of the world, do the following:


If you’re a justice of the Supreme Court, ignore the first sacrament of a democracy and suspend the counting of ballots in a presidential election. Appoint the candidate of your choice as president.

If you’re the newly anointed president, react to a terrorist attack by invading a nonterrorist country. Despite the loss or disablement of untold numbers of lives, manage your war so that its results will be indeterminate.

Using the state of war as justification, order secret surveillance of American citizens, data mine their phone calls and e-mail, make business, medical and public library records available to government agencies, perform illegal warrantless searches of homes and offices.

Take to torturing terrorism suspects, here or abroad, in violation of the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution, which prohibits the infliction of cruel and unusual punishment. Unilaterally abrogate the Convention Against Torture as well as the Geneva Conventions regarding the treatment of prisoners of war. Commit to indeterminate detention without trial those you decide are enemies. For good measure, trust that legislative supporters will eventually apply this policy as well to American citizens.

Suspend progressive taxation so that the wealthiest pay less proportionately than the middle class. See to it that the wealth of the country accumulates to a small fraction of the population so that the gap between rich and poor widens exponentially.

By cutting taxes and raising wartime expenditures, deplete the national treasury so that Congress and state and municipal legislatures cut back on domestic services, ensuring that there will be less money for the education of the young, for government health programs, for the care of veterans, for the maintenance of roads and bridges, for free public libraries, and so forth.

Deregulate the banking industry so as to create a severe recession in which enormous numbers of people lose their homes and jobs.

Before you leave office add to the Supreme Court justices like the ones who awarded you the presidency.

C. Department of abasement, apology and correction:

Although I do not feel like apologizing for anything today, I feel I must say something about why I believe, “This and that…” has recently become so boring to me and I assume to you. Perhaps it is due to the enervating effect of the heat wave since I returned. On the other hand my sadness for leaving behind Hayden and my friends and family who have been so kind and understanding to me may have affected me more that I realized. Or, it may be with the effective end of the Republican presidential nomination, I have become disappointed with the disappearance of God’s (that practical joker in the sky) chosen candidate for lunatic of the month. (Now, I certainly have my problems with Mitt, but give him credit for defeating all of God’s own candidates.) It may also be the ennui settling in as the realization that, “This and that…” is coming to its end. But, for whatever the reason, I apologize.


Please see the blog:

(Graphics unavailable at this time)
The map on the left shows the counties that voted strongly Republican in 2008 the purple mixed Republican and Democratic and the blue Democratic. The map on the right shows the same information but adjusted for population size. I guess it is safe to assume from these maps that Democrats prefer to be near water and where there are a lot of other people while Republicans seem not to like water and prefer to be left alone.

Pookie should appeal to all Americans, he likes cities but not people too much. He likes to swim but prefers to drink things other than plain water.

1. “The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.”
~Franklin D. Roosevelt

2. “I believe that, as long as there is plenty, poverty is evil.”
~Robert Kennedy

3. “A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.”
~Franklin D. Roosevelt

4. “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.”
~Dwight D. Eisenhower

5. “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.”
~Martin Luther King, Jr.

6. “Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.”
~Abraham Lincoln



If you do not think it can happen again, look at the results in the Greek election. The Greek unemployment rate has approached 25 percent and the Nazi Party in the recent election has garnered almost 10 percent of the vote to for the first time in 65 years win seats in a european national legislature.



Gary’s photograph of Pattaya Bay

Categories: April 2012 through June 2012 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. March 17, 2010

For the past three or four days the burning of the rice stubble and out of control grass fires in the area have left me with a sore throat and burning eyes. The sky is a hazy grey and the sun baleful…Of course it is not baleful at all. The particulate matter in the air just interferes with the blue portion of the light spectrum leaving the sun to appear a hazy red. I guess baleful is more poetic.

It seems Poets and those who make money off them (does anyone make money off of poetry? Did they ever? Is Rap poetry?) often claim poetry is some form of truth-telling. Baloney (or bologna or even salami) poets, like the adjectives they use, are accomplished liars. Think about it, poetry began as some sycophants telling lies to flatter the proto-biker that ruled the cave with terror and rape. Did you ever notice most legends about heroes or even about the Volk are glorification of rape, slaughter robbery, lying and corruption by the worthless and unproductive of the peaceful and productive. I have never heard of a poem or legend glorifying a guy who grows a great zucchini or who invented the vibrator. The only positive legend I can think of is the one about the guy bringing fire to the people. But he was really only a sneak thief and liar and probably deserved to be chained to a rock and have birds tear out his liver for all eternity. are probably wondering if I got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning or if there is trouble in paradise. Well, neither really, a slight cold and a rampant allergic reaction to the air pollution has diminished my normal sunny disposition and after all think about what one could say about paradise if one did not exaggerate the annoying minutiae of existence. “Today I sat on a cloud, played my harp and was happy,” “Today I sat on a cloud, played my harp and was happy” and so on. Not only would that be intolerably boring but insufferably smug. On the other hand, “Today, I sat on a cloud, played my harp and was happy until a god-dammed fly started buzzing around my head and landed on my nose”. Now I can sit back and say to myself, “It serves you right you smug bastard” (I like the word “smug”).

Now where am I going with this? I intended to write that my illness and allergies have restricted me to spending most of my time in my bedroom which has air-conditioning.

Mac’s (I have settled on Mac as his name) father has taken over the day-to-day chore of entertaining both children. As a result little of interest to me and I assume you has occurred since I last wrote. I don’t even have a new photograph of insufferably cute children to annoy you with. But I did locate the attached advertisement that may amuse you.

And here I thought crack was just a cheap high.




Took Hayden and Mac/Max to school, gassed up car, had coffee with Mac/Max father. Yesterday went to Night Safari, Hayden running around from exhibit to exhibit not remaining before any for more than a second or two, Mac/Max cried throughout the visit, I believe because he was frightened by a peacock on the path, father quiet and withdrawn as usual and me truly dying from the heat.

Did some research on Braudel yesterday. His view on capitalism is similar but far better developed than mine. What surprised me, although it shouldn’t be so, was the resistance by traditional economists to his conclusions. Basically, he separates “Capitalism” and “Capitalists” from “Free Markets” and “Competition.” His claim is that “Capitalism” is a social phenomena that predates the rise of the “Free Market” in 14-15 century Italy.
“Capitalism” as he defines it is the search for the highest rates of returns and is not connected to or based upon a particular means of production. And usually the highest returns are produced by monopoly (or price-fixing). Capitalists will resist competition to the last penny.

My aphorisms written to Gates and Schatzman in recent emails:

“You can lead a horse to honey but you must account for the bees” and;

“It is easier to get Mc Donald‘s to sell more Chicken McNuggets then to get a power company to close down a single coal-fired power plant”

In part, attempt to address a practical response to this phenomena. (although more accurately is addresses the problem of vested interests.)


From Irwin:

roses are red
violets are blue
what a remarkable guy
for the zucchini he grew.

he sautéed it in butter
gave some to the poor
remarkable fellow
but really a fool.

Joe’s response:

Ok, try one about the vibrator.

Irwin’s response:

she stuck it inside
then licked it with glee,
i only wish that
it could have been me.


From Joe to Nikkie:

Got up at about 9 AM with Hayden shouting that my breakfast was getting cold. We ate breakfast on patio. When we finished went I back to my room. Natalie had gotten up by then and barged into my room demanding 1500 baht. When I asked for what, she said “for cleaning the car, gas and other things”. She said she had to go to “Central for some things”. I mentioned that I had to get a “top-up” for my phone. She suggested that I accompany her and Hayden. I gave her 1200 baht. When we got into the car she began in on its “dirtiness”. When she found some cigar ash in the seat track, she got apoplectic. I said most of the smoking was done by Nikki. Hayden stood up for Nikki and ratted on me for smoking in the car yesterday. i called him a rat. I am pretty low, first I rat out my friend and then verbally abuse a 5 year old. Does Natalie really bring that out in me or am I naturally this morally defective?

Drove to gas station. Natalie put in 500 baht. Gauge read the same as when we put in 1500 baht (same gas station).

Got to Central, left the auto to be cleaned, took 1500 baht out of my SF account and gave her 500. Went to eat lunch at usual spot. She paid. Returned to Central, I went to a coffee shop to wait. Paid $2 for a coppa. She came asked for 500 baht for additional shopping. Finished and went home. On the way to the house she stopped and asked one of the subdivisions gardeners working on the trees along the street to come to the house to look at some of our trees that needed pruning. She said they work for free. They agree on pruning the large beautiful tree in the center of the lawn. I agreed that the tree leaned too much and was in danger of falling over. We instructed the gardner to trim the branches on the side of the tree opposite to the lean. She took a nap. I took Hayden to the school to play with Leo. After Jerry returned him home, we went to the sport club where Hayden swam, Natalie exercised and I wrote most of this. When we returned the gardeners had cut off most of the top of the tree and all the limbs on the wrong side of the tree. So now we no longer have a beautiful tall tree in the center of the yard but a stunted monstrosity with a thick naked trunk sticking up and a few remaining limbs on the leaning side sure to topple what’s left of the tree in the slightest breeze. I requested that they cut away some of the limbs of the leaning side to reduce the weight on the trunk and left not wanting to see the result. They charged us 500 baht.

She leaves to return to BKK early tomorrow. Said she had to get back before the demonstrations.

Nikki responds:

HI just a check of last developments,
i called the headquarters in bkk and looks like we are short of some payments:
summer school and the usual salary to the maid
we or you have to straigth things up unless u want to receive a lot of nasty phone calls.
Glad the childrens got along well are they playing my WII or was just a waste of money??
what a strange situation 2 kids attended by an old lawyer and refused thai father i guess the world on that part of land is going upside down
the nature is changing i see the mothers don’t want grow up childrens anymore just getting selfish boh? who knows
Few flashes from NYC:
went with my bro and Steven (my other son) to have a lunch in chinatown and a coffe in little italy the remain of it anyway
I am sure we have been notice by the anti mafia squad we looked weird and out of place talking in italian and a strange heavy accented english
Steven looks a perfect connection beetwen italian Cosa nostra and the new sinovietnamese
triade best example of a mixed race.
I screw up the time change dayligth in usa so we got to run to the terminal in Newark to catch my plan rushing and cursing in italian with the amusement of the taxi driver
I ll fly out saturday again to jfk fetch my bro i hope he is still there not getting lost and return to italy.

Joe again:

I do not know what she is talking about with the maid. I paid the maid with the 5000 baht you gave me for the school. I also told her the school gets paid Tomorrow according to my agreement with Choti. She called today first thing in the morning to check on wether my money had arrived. I had not even dropped the kids off at school yet.

Anyway, I will send you the first accounting on Friday so that you will have a record of all expenses. It looks like I am going to have to have the maid sign a receipt every time I give her money. I really do not need this crap.


No biggies just clear the remaining bills if u can and tell her that all has been payed so she calm the fuck down i hope
make a restock on the fridge too.
we are dealing with a nervous and angry at the life person
ciao call u back
Ehi how about some pics of the falling tree?

Joe to Nikki again:

Below is the initial account statement for Chiang Mai. I will send you an updated version every week. This chart records only the deposits and expenditures related to the updated budget for Chiang Mai that I will send to you in a later email. It does not include any of my personal expenditures.

As you can see it includes the deposits of my monthly share of the expenses (13,000 baht) and reimbursement of the 5000 baht you left with me for partial payment of the tuition that I used to pay the maid.

The expenditures include the 7000 baht for the Summer School tuition and 3500 baht that we owe for the Saturday program that we had not paid. It also includes 1000 baht that I gave to he maid to reimburse her for her purchase of food out of her salary. I think this is what Natalie is complaining about.

The month begins on the 17th of March and ends on the 16th of April. I chose this for my convenience since it coincides with my receipt of my SS check.

You should make a deposit of the EURO equivalent of $400 sometime before the 1st of April so that I have enough to pay the maid her salary when it comes due that week.

The remaining projected expenses are for the Services and HOA (About 4000 baht — $125) and food (another 4000 baht). Your $400 and the $220 we have in the account now will leave us a little short because I used the account to pay the Saturday School program. So we should both expect to pony up about another 1500 baht to cover everything.

Please note that this account will differ from the bank statement somewhat since I had to use my own money to pay the school before I could get to the bank.

Nikki’s response:

OK i am happy with this only problem is that i don’t want to be double charged from her like paying twice the school or the maid but this is my problem that i have to deal with.
the money will come either as a western union wire or by me personally when i got there let me find out the cheapest way the bank system in italy sucks and is too slow

From Anne Marie:

Your rant about poetry was utterly delicious. I am impressed with how well you write! Now you do realize you have a family of poets over here in SF and I simply can’t let this one slip by without a proper defense!
You are in the company of many great, highly esteemed intellectuals of the past ages when you condemn poetry and poets. At CCSF, my favorite English teacher writes poetry and he liked to point out how many great thinkers down through history have trashed it or at least been suspicious of it. The biggest guy to go against poets and poetry is our old pal Plato! In his Republic, he tries to create the ideal state, saying who should govern it, etc. And he makes a very big point that ALL POETS should be OUT, banned, not allowed!!! Why? Because poetry works up the emotions and creates imaginary worlds, both of which undermine pure reason and logical thinking, which is what you need, according to poor deluded Plato, to make correct decisions. Nope Plato would certainly not approve of Athena or her family living in his Republic, because we would be in there creating poems and poetic novels that would fire up the emotions and stimulate the imaginations of our readers! For shame! Now, here is the great quote from famous Romantic poet John Keats that goes counter to Plato: “Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world.” By which I think he meant, in the LONG RUN, our human minds and feelings and therefore our culture and civilization are much more shaped by the great poetry than by the laws passed by political institutions, which are only very short-run and short-sighted things!!

HERE ENDS TODAY’S LESSON, Ha ha. Hope you enjoyed my defense efforts! And Hmmm…. interesting you used zucchini and vibrators, could that phallus on your daily walk be affecting you? Looking forward to more of your usual sunny disposition and talk of paradise. I also like the word “smug” which reminds me, have you looked at my gallery on smugmug yet? By the way, I have decided to include a couple photographs of “insufferably cute children to annoy you with.” for a change! From back when they were cute children!!

Hope you are feeling better soon. Much love from the Petrillo clan back home,

From Bill Gates:

Bitch, bitch, bitch! Living in paradise and complaining about the bad air for a couple of days! Take a deep breath and end it all quickly or just don’t let life get in the way of living! As Cher said to Nicholas Cage after he said he loved her: “Get over it”!

You get my e-mail – I arrive Apr. 22nd. A buddy (client) is going with me this trip. Great story: his father was a General in the Iranian army, pre-religious zealot shit, and ends up on a “death list” when the Shah is eliminated from power. Mom calls sonny (my buddy) who’s fornicating at a private school in Rome. She tells him to get back, they’re in deep shit! Sonny returns and comes up with the terrible heart condition diagnosis that can only be treated in the U.S. The zealots see through it and want a $6M piece of property put up to ensure the family return to the motherland (natch, everyone knows no one’s coming back!). The family arrives in the US with its paltry millions and lives happily ever after – until sonny can fornicate again, this time during April in Thailand! … I love happy ending stories!

From Maryanne:

I forgot to tell you I saw Jessica in DC. It was lovely to see her again. We
had a great visit and when I left I realized how fortunate you and I are
that we were given such delightful daughters in our lives. I could have
stayed chatting with her for hours.

Categories: January 2010 through March 2010 | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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