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About jimster

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  1. Not so sure about that because letters and postcards are much more personal. Nowadays nobody writes each other letters and postcards anymore, except very close friends living in the west. In a way this is a sad reflection of the times. As far as being able to contact people easily, nearly every Thai has a mobile phone and you can always send them SMS messages or even more popular these days are instant chat apps such as LINE, WeChat, KakaoTalk, Viper, Skype and WhatsApp. The former 2 are the most popular in Thailand and in my experience a much better way of getting hold of people than FB.
  2. So it's still pushing ahead with this single internet gateway thing? What would this mean to accessibility of online content? So far, except for very, very limited banned content everything I search for is available in Thailand (fortunately) including content that is or may be restricted in some European countries, for example.
  3. You're right, of course it isn't just Thais. However, what I have noticed is that a large number of Thais are still very much into FB in a way that people in the west were 5-8 years ago, but now you are starting to see people leave FB but I haven't noticed any real exodus away from FB amongst Thais. This could change in coming years, but a reported 44 million FB users in Thailand out of a population of around 68 million is very significant. You mentioned that the single gateway could mean a loss of access to Google, YouTube etc. well what would replace them? Unlike China, which has it's own domestic versions of these, such as Baidu and YouKu, Thailand is almost completely dependent on western companies for these and many other services. No way should any attempt be made to regulate the internet in Thailand or anywhere else in the world but unless Thais create their own alternatives to FB and search engines like Google, they'll remain completely dependent upon them.
  4. Well I think the commenters were simply referring to the fact that too many Thai people are obsessed with FB and it's kinda getting ridiculous. Whatever one thinks about FB, there's certainly more to life than wasting time on that social media network. I have a FB account but have all but stopped using it, in fact I'm considering shutting down my account and I think my life will be better without it. A small number of Thai friends I have spoken to are the same - even one friend whose business website has more likes than many multinational companies (yes it was hard to believe at first, but it's true) rarely uses her personal FB account these days, preferring Instragram and LINE, while her boyfriend has, like me, essentially stopped using it. However, of course I don't think FB should be banned, except if it was proven to be subversive in nature or a threat to national security, which obviously it isn't. I believe there was massive opposition to the single gateway you describe, I thought this proposal has been abandoned?
  5. How do you know this? Of course they will deport these foreigners, it's in the ministerial regulations that it's illegal for a foreigner to come to Thailand to engage in prostitution, and Africans stand out much more than say, Lao or Burmese do. In fact, even the latter are regularly deported for engaging in prostitution and other activities the Thai government requires a work permit for.
  6. Singapore is fine, I like it too (at least for a few days it's not too bad) but if you're suggesting this is the path Bangkok should look towards, I think you're mistaken. Tourists will stop coming if Bangkok simply turns into a slightly more chaotic, messier version of Singapore. There are already enough shopping malls all with the same stores, same restaurants, same supermarkets it's getting boring as it is - I mean how many more Fuji restaurants, MK Suki restaurants, McDonalds, KFCs, Dairy Queens etc. does one need? Kill the street food and not only will that mean lost livelihoods for the locals and possible protests and social upheaval (yes it will happen if the government doesn't abandon it's plan or find an acceptable compromise solution) but the charm of Bangkok will be lost. If I want to go to Singapore, I'll go there. I don't need another Singapore in Thailand, because once that happens, there'll be another one in Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam and soon the whole world will be same. Sterile and boring.
  7. Well for starters, the Philippines is not a direct neighboring country. Although neither is Vietnam, the latter only sees a small number of workers legally in Thailand mainly in the north-eastern border provinces next to Laos, the bulk of Thailand's menial work is performed by Burmese nationals (around 70-80% of the total) followed by Cambodia at 15-20% then Laos. The labor agreement between Thailand and Vietnam is a very recent one (I can remember reading about it last year). Filipino workers can, and have always been eligible to apply for a non-B visa and work permit to work in skilled professions such as English teaching. If they choose to work illegally, then they need to accept the risk they're taking. I'm sure a Thai couldn't just work in the Philippines without securing a work permit either. ASEAN is not about complete freedom of movement like in the EU. I think at this time, the ASEAN countries should agree on some common frameworks (such as common customs rules, allowing vehicles registered in one ASEAN country in to another ASEAN country etc.) but aside from this work to keep their sovereignty in tact. An EU-style super state (which ASEAN or the AEC fortunately is not, at least for now) would be an absolute nightmare for the citizen's of each and every ASEAN state.
  8. Actually he is right. What Telstra and every other big Australian company is doing is maximizing their profits. They don't give a rat's ass about Australian workers. Yes the local workers may be overpaid, to some extent. But have you seen the cost of living over there? The government knows very well what it's doing and knows very well that Australians are unhappy about this. I find it insulting of you to label Aussie workers as "lazy". They are simply expensive, but certainly not lazy. As soon as India or the Philippines becomes too expensive (give it at least 10-15 years) they'll simply cull those jobs and move them to Nigeria or somewhere else which is even cheaper. That's how globalization works. The obligation of the Australian government should be to provide jobs for the Australian people, but the future is grim. More and more jobs will be outsourced and what remains will increasingly be automated. This is of course a global trend, but Australia is at the frontline now, followed by other rich western countries, Singapore and Japan. It will probably eventually hit Thailand too, though not for now.
  9. It will start with propaganda on TV (like in this story and other similar ones I've seen on American TV) about the advantages of not having to carry your wallet or keys, as if having putting your wallet and keys in your pocket is such an annoyance (not). Unless you're suffering from Alzheimer's, there's nothing remotely difficult about carrying essential documents and money with you when you leave your house to go to work, shopping etc. Then it will become mandatory for the elderly living in government facilities such as nursing homes, followed by the mentally disabled, i.e. autistic people (which could become a majority of the population in years to come), then all new borns (as with vaccination schedules in many western countries), then all school children and finally everyone else. It will probably take a few decades for this program to be completed, which will then mark the completion of the establishment's desire for complete control. A truly Orwellian future. Hopefully, enough people will wake up from their slumber to realize what is going on. All these changes have been happening, bit by bit, slowly enough so the average person doesn't realize what's happening. Indeed, only a few years ago this kind of news would have been dismissed as a "conspiracy theory" yet here we are, discussing this because the mainstream news media is finally revealing it. In 10-15 years time it will become the new pro and against debate just like the pro vs. anti vaxxers and in time, if not defeated everyone will be enslaved by it. Truly scary indeed.
  10. As George Orwell said, as the bible said (mark of the beast) and as patriots like film maker Aaron Russo (RIP) have stated, this is only the first step in chipping all of humanity with an RFID chip to replace cash. The government will fully own you. I hope this insane plan doesn't go down without a fight. Over my dead body will I be chipped.
  11. The English language OP contradicts entirely with the Thai language clip I just viewed. In that clip, 87% of pickup owners and 70% of other vehicle owners according to a NIDA poll agree that there need to be changes to the law. This means they disagree with the strictness of the law and want to see it either amended or scrapped as explained in the clip. If you don't understand Thai, please get a Thai speaker to explain it to you.
  12. Doesn't make a difference. Some foreigners seem to have this impression that the current government is more authoritarian than previous governments but in reality it doesn't matter. Just like immigration changes for foreigners were made by the red shirt and then the yellow shirt administrations, the military government has continued this trend. Any future civilian government won't undo these changes. It's identical in the west. No matter if it's a conservative or liberal government in power, over time the government consolidates it's power and works from changes made by previous administrations. Consider for example the following: has any western government managed to overturn the policy of multiculturalism and replace it with pre 1960s or 1970s restrictions? For example, to make Europe European again? (e.g. France French, Germany German etc.) No. And no matter the government in power and how much they claim to work for the ordinary people, it will never happen, despite the rhetoric of some politicians. The ones who may actually be serious about it will never get into power. Back to Thailand though - the government has already said it will back down on this rule. For now at least.
  13. Huge, no. Maybe 30,000 or something like that. A lot of Thais especially in the provinces will have never met a Thai of Indian background and will assume they are a foreigner from India until they open their mouth and speak Thai. Indians are known as "khaek" lit. "guest" in Thai and as such, most Thais will assume that's what they are unless they know them personally. It's a confusing story because it seems to imply that the Thai gang came to the aid of an Indian man who was in dispute with another Indian. That would be a first because normally Thais don't care about arguments between two foreigners. It's usually "protect the Thai against the foreigner" but here there was no Thai to protect. If one individual was indeed an Indian Thai, the Thai gang would have had to have known this by knowing that individual personally.
  14. Well that's what people in Thailand tend to do and I salute them for it. Some laws are just silly and the people don't want their rights and freedom taken away from them. However, there was so much outrage with this law that the police decided it would make some consultations and consider it again in the future. I'm confused by this latest update because I think it was made perfectly clear that this law will NOT be entered into force for the time being, even though just a couple of weeks ago it was looking like the police wanted to enforce it but perhaps they underestimated the community backlash and impact it would have on the lives of people. A 6 person limit riding in the tray, something like that may perhaps be a reasonable compromise. However, Thailand should not be in any rush to emulate any other country. It's situation is unique (how many countries in the world have as many pickup trucks on the road as in Thailand?) and to impose such a draconian, drastic change that is neither a cause of road accidents nor does it help to solve the problem of a high accident rate is just ridiculous. Something more sane like recognizing that around 80% of all road accidents (including injuries and deaths) involve motorcycles and thus enforcing the helmet law would make more sense. Not only is wearing a helmet the law since many years and is sensible, it doesn't require a big investment or change in lifestyle. Already the vast majority of motorcycle riders in Bangkok wear helmets (around 80-90% or even more), nearly all owners of motorcycles also own a helmet even if they don't use it and it would help to bring down the road toll. I'm baffled why they even decided to focus on pickup trucks to begin with rather than motorcycles. Seems like a rather bizarre thing to do, especially in light of the statistics I've just given.