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Everything posted by forrestreid

  1. If you are capable of supporting yourself through online work or suchlike (easier said than done, I know) you may be able to travel to the Caucasus republic of Georgia. That’s presuming you’re going to be allowed out of Russia. I follow a Russian YouTuber called NFKRS. He is an English language YouTuber and makes money that way. His channel is here: https://www.youtube.com/c/MultiNfz Since the war broke out he has moved to Tbilisi in Georgia. He spoke about his immigration situation in one of his videos. Seemingly, a Russian can get a Visa to travel to Georgia for 360 days in a year. Then you can go to (say) Armenia for a week or two, and come back and start another 360 day Visa in Georgia. Not sure if it’s quite as simple as that for everybody, but he is currently renting an apartment in Tbilisi, making money on YouTube and supporting himself in that way. Although he’s only 22, he doesn’t have to worry about the conscription issue, as he has a medical exemption.
  2. If you have twitter, an guy who has a Youtube account and also tweets on travel did a series of tweets on his trip on the new railway, dated the 9th September. Giving his views on it, good and bad. The account is called @nonstopeurotrip
  3. I rather think you are joking. Never heard of him before, but according to the first video I found on Youtube about him (seemingly by a supporter of his) he is facing a jail term for "exposing the identity of an alleged paedophile in breach of a New South Wales Court suppression order". This is presumably because the fool might wreck a forthcoming criminal trial. According to other videos he was already in trouble for harassing politicians and/or various Covid protest nut-jobbery. If DanyaHulus is genuine, your thread hi-jacking is in rather poor taste.
  4. I concur with the assessment of PeterRS. We might not see eye to eye on international relations, but we can agree that Alex Kerr wrote a fine account of Bangkok!
  5. A bit harsh, one mean comment in a tread does not make you a troll in my book.
  6. I think in any democratic system winning with 57% of the vote is a pretty comprehensive win, to be fair. But my understanding is that is is not the policy of Presidents Tsai's party to go for formal (de jure) independence, it is to continue the present ambiguous system where Taiwan is de facto independent, whilst avoiding any 1776-style Declaration of Independence (without renouncing the right of Taiwan to do so in theory). Personally I don’t think any Taiwanese government will ever go for full, declared independence anyway, as it would bring an almost immediate invasion. My opinion is that, of the two government on either side of the Taiwan , it is the PRC side that has done most to escalate matters over the last decade, and therefore to propagate the PRC view of individual incidents (like the Pelosi visit) is to collude with its bullying.
  7. You write as if the “people who actually live in Taiwan” are entirely helpless in the situation. But the fact is that Taiwan is a democratic country – and it was the democratic vote of the people in elections that has resulted the increased tensions over the status of Taiwan. As you have pointed out, the collapse in the number of mainland tourists visiting Taiwan followed the PRC unhappiness with the decision of the Taiwan people in the 2015 election. Obviously that very negatively impacted on the tourist sector of Taiwan, but I think it is fair to say that the electorate knew before the election that the result that transpired would enrage Beijing. But they cast their vote for their favoured candidates anyway, as is their right. You are trying to create a divide here between the “politicians” and “the men and women who live there”, but it seems that on this issue people are leading and the politicians following - otherwise the Kuomintang would be winning elections. Now you may be of the opinion that the Taiwanese people are misjudging their own long term interests, and should “go gently into the good night” of becoming a new subjugated province of the PRC, like Hong Kong. However, I would urge you to make that argument in a straight-forward fashion, rather than insinuating (in a rather dubious proposition for a country with democratic elections) that only "the politicians” want a certain policy… and that the “ordinary people” disagree.
  8. Enjoyed those trips down memory lane to 2009 Shamelessmack. I think that map of the Silom bars in 2022 merits its own thread, too!
  9. To clarify the above, it was to demonstrate that the USA and its allies have generally not had any constant viewpoint on when secession from an existing state is acceptable. For instance, it is generally supportive of Kosovo and Taiwan, but in the case of Catalonia, a few years ago, it was definitely on the side of the Spanish government in opposing it, presumably mainly due to Spain being a NATO member and considered a democracy. Whether this inconstancy is a good thing or a bad thing is debatable, but one cannot accuse American politicians of being hypocrites for being supportive of Taiwan's continued existence as a de-facto separate state. Anyway, Pelosi's trip is underway it seems, with her in Singapore today. We will await with interest whether she does turn up in Taiwan, or follows the Biden counsel to stay away. If she was to ask my advice, I would suggest staying away at the moment, as the current international situation is so volatile, and to visit when Biden clearly wants her to keep away would make the American government look divided and therefore weak. But there are advantages and disadvantages to either option. The main thing is to demonstrate to the PRC that the US will not abandon a democratic country like Taiwan, which definitely would be getting Asian policy wrong.
  10. I am not sure what point you are trying to make with this paragraph. The point I was making was that China was not the only country in Asia to be colonised (or partly colonised) in the 19th and 20th centuries, and it seems to have precious little empathy for others suffered a greater indignity at that time, despite feeling rather sorry for itself. To respond to your analogy I’m sure Americans would feel furious if some states of the Union were taken over by Imperialist foreign powers. But I am sure they would be even more furious if the whole country was taken over rather than in just a few states! (Which would be the analogy to what happened with Korea and Vietnam). As you seem to have discussed with many Chinese the effect that colonisation and the unequal treaties had on China, why do you think it has not made them more able to empathise with the viewpoint of a country like the Philippines or Vietnam? That is something I have wondered about as the whole saga of the disputes over Chinese expansionism in the South China Sea has played out over the last decade or so. You make reference to US citizens that are in favour of independence for Taiwan. I’m not sure what the average view of Joe Public is in the States, as I don’t live there, but my understanding of the viewpoint of officials and the State Department is that while they accept the argument that Taiwan should be considered as part of China’s national territory in the long run, that “de facto” the independence of Taiwan should be respected, pending a mutual agreement to reunite peacefully. In particular, they don’t feel that the USA is bound by anything to acquiesce to a unilateral invasion of Taiwan by the PRC. Regarding the Texas example, I willingly concede that the USA would not accept it if Texas unilaterally decided to secede. However, the analogous situation to the premise of this tread is to ponder what the the position of, say, the government of Canada or Germany would be to Texas seceding. I would like to think that if the secessionist state of Texas was a democratic state and it was leaving a USA which had become a fascist dictatorship, that the politicians in Germany and Canada would support Texas. There is a more apt example of this sort of situation. This is Kosovo leaving Serbia. Despite the fact that in general, international governments are opposed to unilateral secessionist movements, in this case once Kosovo had rebelled, most of the international community ended up supporting the secessionist rebels. This was for various reasons, mainly the fact that there was view in western countries that a genocide of the Muslims in Kosovo was beginning to take place. (Obviously the reaction of the West in general, and NATO countries in particular, to the Kosovo crisis is still very controversial, with some commentators taking the side of Serbia. But I am talking about the general response to the situation). It is a good example of how the international official opinion that secession should only occur with the peaceful agreement of both the exiting region and the overall state, can be breached in extreme circumstances.
  11. PeterRS, your explanation of how your life has impacted your view of the PRC was interesting. You obviously have a lot of experience of living and travelling in China over many years. However, I still think the way you view the subject of this thread (how US politicians have reacted to the rise of China) is incorrect. You know more than me about the various political manoeuvrings that ended up with the ROC controlling Taiwan and the PRC controlling the mainland by 1950. However, the fact remains that, whatever the history, at the present moment there is in Taiwan a highly developed country, with a democratic government. This is versus the undemocratic PRC regime. Therefore, I think the USA is morally correct to support Taiwan. That does not mean I believe they should necessarily intervene militarily if Taiwan is attacked. As the PRC is a nuclear armed power I think that policy would be too dangerous. In that regard, I have not sure what the reasoning is behind Biden dropping the so-called “strategic ambiguity“ stance of the US recently over the question of whether America would support Taiwan militarily, if it was invaded. It is a policy that needs careful consideration. I do think the USA it should be more blunt about what it would do in such a situation. The whole reason for “strategic ambiguity“ from the 80s until recently was that the USA was hoping that the PRC, while claiming Taiwan, would never actually invade. There are many places around the world where one country claims piece of land not currently occupied by it (Spain and British-controlled Gibraltar for example) But no one really expects Spain to violently invade in the reasonably near future. That appears not to be the case any more with the PRC and Taiwan. In my own view, the USA should make clear it would not military intervene if the PRC invaded Taiwan, but state that it has the intention to help build up as much of a modern military arsenal (excluding nuclear weaponry) as possible in Taiwan to enable it to defend itself. And just make it as difficult as possible for the PRC to wipe out the democratic government of Taiwan, if the Taiwanese people are prepared to defend themselves. Regarding the more general point about the century of humiliation for China and the "unequal treaties" , that is true. However China was not the only country to undergo that. Korea, Vietnam and the Philippines are actually fully colonised during that period. However the Chinese reaction to this colonisation it’s not to show any solidarity with those Asian countries. In fact it’s rebound from its weakness of the 19th and early 20th century mainly seems to involve bullying countries like Vietnam and the Philippines for over territory that is much closer to those countries than the Middle Kingdom. For those reasons, and also the fact that the much-heralded "coming liberalisation" of the PRC that the China "doves" based their advice on seems unlikely to ever arrive before a Taiwan invasion, I think that a more hawkish policy is quite justified.
  12. Admittedly Pelosi was more careless than she should have been regarding the possible consequences for the press team on that occasion. However, I think if I was a US citizen in 1991 and if I was looking at my Congress representatives, I would be far more embarrassed about the fact that the rest of them went to Beijing in 1991, just two years after the PRC government had massacred thousands of protesters in Tiananmen Square, and had NOT made some form of protest. And as regards the title of this thread, I think if you look at the grand arc of her career on China policy, Pelosi has been much more correct in her analysis than say, Bush or Clinton, who as you point out she so annoyed. Back in the 1990s, when China was somewhat isolated, and Clinton’s administration were in favour of allowing them to join the WTO and to bring it into international organisations, it was on the basis that it was as China got richer it would then become more democratic. Around that time there was discussion of China hosting the Olympics, and the "China Dove" side (who were dominant in both Clinton and Bush Jr's State Department) argued that it would be a good thing as China would have to open up a bit when hosting the Olympics. Tibet was the region most in the news at the time, and the argument was, "well China won’t want to be embarrassed by being oppressive to the Tibetans during the Olympics, it will surely ease up." Didn't happen. In general, Clinton and the other China doves were certain that, as China got more more integrated into the international community, it’s authoritarian nature would slowly decrease (a bit like what happened in South Korea and Taiwan between around 1970 and 1990). It was a genuine debate at the time, where Pelosi was obviously on the opposite side to Clinton and Bush. However I think history is showing that Pelosi was in the right side of the argument. If you had said to a China "dove" in 2001 that by 2022 China would have an economy as large and integrated into the international markets as it is now, and yet people are still debating not if, but when, it would invade Taiwan, they would be shocked. I think some of the criticism Peter has made of Pelosi on this thread may well have merit (if Biden is saying that the military do not want Pelosi to visit Taiwan, it is concerning). However, in general, Peter, would you not agree that Pelosi has been proved to have been LESS wrong on China than the State Department "China Dove" consensus of 1990s and early Naughties?
  13. I don’t think that is really it. I think it is just for some reason (and I’ve noticed this with Peter’s posts over the years) he seems to have a massive fondness for the PRC regime - no idea why (shrug)
  14. Just another hint on how to read the Very Thai book. I first saw it after I had been to Thailand two or three times, and bought it and gobbled it all up. But if you have never visited the country, some of it may seem a bit obtuse and obscure -"Is a whole section really needed on concrete bar furniture made to look like garishly coloured sliced-through tree trunks?" you may well be asking yourself . So don’t try to read it all through, flick through it and read a few chapters you’re interested in. Maybe keep at your bedside and read a few pages every night. Then leave it, and go back to read it again a week or so after you come back from Thailand. I guarantee you will find you have found a fascination with the most weird things... And no, I dont get commission on sales!
  15. I wouldn’t worry too much about the physical look of the guys is not suiting you, Latbear4blk. Like you I wouldn’t really go too much for the “look” of Asian guys, particularly pale east Asian guys like Koreans and Japanese. However I find quite a variety of guys in Bangkok. Particularly if you meet Cambodian or Burmese guys, they often have interesting darker looks, and sometimes to my eyes have quite a South American look (imho, speaking to as somebody has admittedly never been to South America!) As the regards exploring nature and culture, you will get exotic culture coming out of your ears in Bangkok. I have a feeling from your previous posts that you might be quite interested in popular or street culture, if so I think an absolutely brilliant book to read before you come to Thailand for the first time is “Very Thai: Everyday Popular Culture”, written by Philip Cornwel-Smith. As one of the reviews on Amazon says, “it is the best honest factual book on Thai culture I have ever seen”. The many photographs in at are particularly well chosen. Is answers all those questions you are most certainly going to ask yourself after two or three days in Bangkok, like "What is the story with all those amulets on sale?" or "Why are all the paper napkins pink?", or "What is the story with all the blind people singing into portable microphones on the street?", or "Why do so many of the drag artists in the gay bars wear “ugly face drag”? ....etc. (the last two cultural artifacts seem to be in rapid decline, though). As regards nature, it will not be as easy to access stunning natural sites a short distance from your base if you stay in Bangkok as opposed to say, Phuket. However there are some interesting day trips such as Khai Yai National Park or Erawan National Park where you can see a bit of the wild Thailand.
  16. All those posts were by the on person, who has since quit he board, it seems, so his posts now state "guest". Sad if he has left just because one poster did not apologise for saying something objectionable, you have a reasonably thick skin for posting on message boards.
  17. Amongst the host bars, Tawan, Moonlight and Jupiter have more muscly guys, the Tawan guys in particular have many with a bodybuilder physique. If you search for the names of those bars, you will find several posts withing the last month where people visited them and gave their opinion.
  18. That is all very well, commendable even, but as I said in an earlier post, if one is asked about the "going rate" in a visitor-oriented message board, I think it is only fair to give the "going rate" rather than the "generous guy" rate. You can urge generosity if you want, even say the "going rate" is far too low if you like, but I think if people make a regular habit of giving the answer that they think should be given, rather than the actual answer, to such questions, it will only cause the board to lose credibility in the long run.
  19. You wouldnt have lasted long in the old Thailand-based boards back when i started reading them (around 2007). Back then they seemed dominated by a bunch of low-income retired expats who used to get a fit of the vapours when anybody reported that they may have paid more than 700 baht for short-time. If you did a trip-report in which you foolishly informed all and sundry that you gave your favourite guy, say, 1500 on your last night, they would jump on you like a bunch of hungry hyenas. It was quite funny at times, but I am glad that phase seems to have passed too...
  20. My comment was based on your negative reaction to a discussion of what the going rate for a certain sexual service, considering that on this board there are constant discussions about fee rates in Rio bars, saunas in Barcelona, escorts in Prague etc. All of the issues you have raised concerning the correct way to view a fee for services rendered it would apply in those situations as well. Your disapproval of the suggestion that the “going rate“ may have been to less than what you thought appropriate was what surprised me, given your presumed familiarity with such discussions. Regarding the point on the “business model”. Perhaps it is overly clinical term. But I just meant that the way that remuneration works in sleaze bars in Sunee is different than, say, with the guys who work in a host bar in Jomtien. There, you might be drinking with a customer who sits with you for two or three hours then he brings you back to his hotel and pays you 1500 baht. So your total earnings for the night are 1500 baht (plus your share of off fee and drinks). However, in Nice Boys in Sunee, you might get 300 baht from a customer at 8 pm for a bit of hands-on, you make it 500 baht from a customer that sucks you off at 9 pm, you might get 700 baht from another customer in the bar that you chuck wow for at 10 pm. You get a share of the drinks fee too, of course. So you end up with the same money for your nights work, even though you get it from three short encounters with customers over the night, rather than one long one. The fact that a customer can have a hands-on experience (as opposed to full sex) for a quite a small outlay therefore attracts more customers into the bar, perhaps including people who will go on to off a guy from a host bar in Jomtien complex later that night. The various types of bar have their own niche, and which one is the better or worst deal for the bar guys themselves is a matter of opinion.
  21. I dont disagree with any of that, but I don't think that is necessarily incompatible with my comment above that "if there is a going rate for a service, mentioning that amount honestly is fair". Obviously any opportunity to suggest people be generous or pay over the odds should be taken also, imho.
  22. Please elucidate. I a not really a fan of "Cocks out" sleaze bars myself, so dont worry, I wont take it personally. My understand of the rates in the sleazy bars is more from talking to people who are fans of such places than personal experience. Certainly, in my limited experience, the customers leaving those particular bars seem to have more been giving a clutch of 100 baht notes to the guys they had been sitting with than anything larger. Perhaps I was just there on nights stingy guys were in, if other posters who have personal experience of those particular bars want to chime in, I for one would be interested to read their views. You seem to think that discussing the issue of the going rate for sex providers dispassionately makes one a bad person or something, Reader, a slightly unusual viewpoint for somebody who has over 4,000 posts on this particular message board, I would have thought. It is just a fact that there are several different types of gay sex-orientated bars in Pattaya with different business models.There is the gogo bars with shows in Boyztown, the host bars and "hands on" bars of Sunee, and the host bars and massage outlets of Jomtien. I think it is fair on a board such as this to discuss the business models of the various establishments without worrying that people will get all het up. Obviously, the guys providing the service should never be short-changed, but I think that if there is a going rate for a service, mentioning that amount honestly is fair. Personally, I feel that the going rate for guys in Pattaya is in general probably too low, considering that there seems to be a difficulty in attracting enough workers to gogo bars and the Sunee Plaza sleaze bars, and the particular, often demening, demands of such work . But that is another question to what the going rate currently is.
  23. Well, I think the OP wants to do just that, but without paying over the odds. The name of the bar was not mentioned, but I presume that it is one of the anything goes places in Sunee. Their business model is for customers to come in and buy drinks and spread a few red notes around for a bit of a feel, maybe a purple note for a suck. If customers felt obliged to pay 1000 every time they briefly sucked off a guy in such bars, I suspect the bars would not probably be around for much longer, as this would destroy their business model. Obviously if one wants to pay 1000 (or 10,000) baht for good service, and and to make the guy happy, that is great, but if one is asked about the "going rate" in a visitor-oriented message board, I think it is only fair to give the "going rate" rather than the "generous guy" rate.
  24. I would have thought that 1000 for a sucking his dick in a bar would be being quite generous. After all, if you take him out, he loses the opportunity to gain another customer, wheres as if you pay him and leave the bar, he could be sitting with another customer in 5 minutes. It would depend for me whether he cums or not, as this may be unable to do so again for another customer that night , and so lose out if that is important to a prospective customer. I would say that just for oral without cumming in a bar, 500 would be generous amount, but if the guy came I would give him 1000 at least. Obviously if you want to be generous, that is great too.
  25. As this board is devoted mainly to those topics, it s hard for people to even know where to start answering such a general question. Perhaps if you narrowed it down, people could help. Like...are you looking for mainly paid encounters, or free? If paid, are you looking for more twinky guys or more muscly guys? Also, for a gay massage do you want just a hand job or the whole works. Again, do you prefer a masseur who is twinky or muscular? And so on.
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