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spidermike007

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About spidermike007

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    spidermike007
  • Birthday 05/02/1966

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    Thailand

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    Thailand

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    borneodiver6@gmail.com

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  1. Because this is a forum, and discussing issues is what we do on here. Endless talk is the very point of this forum. Hello?
  2. And always fun to see supporters defend his every move and take personal offense to those who do not. Do not criticize the Master!
  3. I could not possibly agree more with your summary. Well done. Spot on.
  4. I am sorry your knowledge of booze is limited to Leo and Singha, and that my passion for wine offends you. These questions about a 2,000 or 3,000 baht bottle of wine are perfectly ordinary and acceptable. Their ignorance on the subject is not my issue. You sell it, you have an obligation to know something about it and educate your staff. We are discussing fine dining. Not your basic cafe serving Mont Clair.
  5. All false premises. 1. When a customer is perusing a wine list, he probably does not have an encyclopedic knowledge of every vintage for every region of the world. That is simply a presumption based on pure ignorance of the subject. 2. Most people who order a good bottle of wine are not familiar will all wine producers. Therefore a sommelier, or at the minimum a manager or someone with familiarity of the various producers would be able to provide help in making a decision on a relatively expensive bottle of wine. It has nothing to do with embarrassing a waiter. That means nothing to me, as the lack of familiarity with their products is not my issue on any level. There is nothing obnoxious about asking for a recommendation on the available wines. It is done every day, all over the world. 3. Opening a wine related business here is not a good idea. Because of the onerous duties. That is precisely why Thailand has such a dull and listless wine industry.
  6. Much less pour you a sip, in a nice wine glass, and ask you how it is? God forbid that you ask them a question about the wine. Would you recommend the 2012 over the 2014? How was that vintage in Tuscany? They look at you like you are from Mars. Ok, can I speak to the person here who is in charge of wine? Huh? What? Can you repeat the question? Say again? Sorry, nobody here knows nothing about wine. But, you have a hundred bottles on the list, ranging from 1,000 baht to 8,000 baht a bottle. And nobody knows anything? It is no wonder wealthy tourists come here once, and near return. They walk away and say I just do not want to be surrounded by village people who are culturally illiterate.
  7. Well, for sure those tourists are gone for good. But, you have to admit, when it comes to really wealthy tourists, they love to spend money while on vacation. I spoke to a friend from London, who is a very high end attorney. He represents alot of oligarchs from Russia, and top businessmen. He said he averages $75,000 for a ten day vacation, not including luxury spending on watches, hand bags, etc. Guys like him want to drink world class wine, and get world class service from a qualified sommelier. They also want to buy a new watch, or their wives want to buy a new handbag, while traveling. It is just part of the experience for them. They came to Thailand once, around 11 years ago. They never returned. Want to guess why? Those kinds of tourists are gone forever. They will never return. Not enough here to satisfy them.
  8. There are countless things the government could be doing, if they wanted to attract the high quality tourists. Waiving visa fees will have very little impact. They are completely lost, and Thailand’s new Minister for Tourism and Sports Pipat Ratchakitprakarnis is in completely over his head. They literally do not have a clue, how to tackle the dramatic decline in tourism. Especially the decline of big spending Western tourists. They are not attracting the big spending Indian and Chinese tourists. That plan has failed dismally. They are only getting the middle to lower end of that market, and it is becoming a national catastrophe, with millions of jobs at stake. The very first thing they could do, if they were smart, serious and visionary, would be to repeal the anti fareng wine bill, that was passed by a few very corrupt senators way back when, to protect an anemic and truly pathetic local wine industry. They are losing billions of dollars a year in revenue, that could be had from a 100% wine duty, instead of over 300%. The five star hotels would have major wine events, and the entire industry would flourish here. If you are a rich tourist, spending $600 a night at the Banyan Tree in Bangkok, it is difficult to even find someone to have an intelligent conversation with, about the intricacies, the best vintages, and the qualities of the wine you want to order, here in Thailand. The expertise in F & B is really lacking. The same applies to luxury tax. If it were reasonable, Thailand would be able to attract rich tourists from around the world, who want to spend $25,000 on luxury goods, while on vacation. Will they buy a Prada handbag here for $16,000, that costs $5,000 in Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, London, New York, Paris, Rome, Milan, Monaco, Prague, Moscow, Istanbul, or Dubai? Of course not. What will they do? They will choose any one of those spots, and others for vacation, and Thailand will never even be discussed. Sorry to say, but the high spending tourists are lost for good. They WILL NOT come back to Thailand, for a dozen different reasons.
  9. Trump has a very hard time with smart, powerful women. They are essentially his nemesis, and they possess the kryptonite, to his bully pulpit and nonsense. He gets outsmarted (not particularly difficult, with his probable IQ of 90) every time, so I can see why he would be cautious and fearful of this meeting. The whole Greenland thing is beyond nonsense. Just another clown act.
  10. Well, there is no question that China is a threat, on a dozen different levels. They were the world leader (as long as you ignore the Eurocentric history books) from around 1100 AD to around 1800AD, and they did have control of many of the world seas. As far as they are concerned, they are simply trying to regain their rightful place in history. And it is my belief, they will stop at nothing to achieve that. So, we do need to be concerned, and ignoring their intentions will lead to great peril. Xi, and the rest of his cronies are smart, determined, have a lot of money and power to back them up, and they will succeed. No doubt that within 20-30 years they will eclipse the US as the economic leader of the world.
  11. Some friends of mine visited there recently and told me all of the ex-pats had already left the area. It is now almost entirely Chinese owned. Massive development are going up, or being planned. It is the next Chinese colony. 40% of all the foreign direct investment in Cambodia is now Chinese. The name will eventually be changed to Cambochina.
  12. While the information presented in the article is true, with regard to traffic, and the rich not having to face justice here, the NY Times does not really have any moral authority, when it comes to the discussion of wealth disparity. That very issue is becoming more alarming by the day, in the US. The top 8% are doing very well there. The rest? An awful lot of couples working three jobs to survive. Costs are skyrocketing, despite what the goons tell us about fake inflation numbers, and wages are barely rising. A decent 2 bedroom home or apartment costs $3,200 to $4,000 a month to rent, in Los Angeles, and many large cities are becoming unaffordable for most. Health costs are stunning, and the bottom 70% live paycheck to paycheck, and are one $5,000 expense away from disaster. Barely a month's worth of savings. If that. Also, with regard to justice, the American judicial system is nearly as corrupt as here in Thailand, in a sense. If you have a few million dollars, to throw at a legal team, they can more than likely create doubt in the mind of the jurors. Just look at O.J. I am thrilled I live here. My dollars go quite far, and I have the kind of lifestyle I could never dream of having in the US.
  13. There is no question that this man will go down in history as being not only one of the least competent leaders this nation has ever had, but also being one of the most destructive, and having had a hand decimating both the tourism industry, and the ex-pat community. He is a hater, a racist, a xenophobe, and small, fearful man, and a false puritan. There is nothing about him that is not a fraud.
  14. Thailand thought the country was something very special, and was he center of the known universe, and that nobody would ever say no, or find alternative places to visit. The fact is that there are countless other spots, many in this region, that offer better service, more expertise in food and beverage (especially wine service and selection at fair prices, which rich tourists demand), reasonable import duties to sustain a luxury goods market, better training, and far better english skills. Thailand simply lost sight of the big picture, and had very little vision, with regard to big spending tourists, who need to be catered to, instead of scorned. There are countless things the government could be doing, if they wanted to attract the high quality tourists. The very first thing would be to repeal the anti fareng wine bill, that was passed by a few very corrupt senators way back when, to protect an anemic and truly pathetic local wine industry. They are losing billions of dollars a year in revenue, that could be had from a 100% wine duty, instead of over 300%. The five star hotels would have major wine events, and the entire industry would flourish here. If you are a rich tourist, spending $600 a night at the Banyan Tree in Bangkok, it is difficult to even find someone to have an intelligent conversation with, about the intricacies, the best vintages, and the qualities of the wine you want to order, here in Thailand. The expertise in F & B is really lacking. Same applies to luxury tax. If it were reasonable, Thailand would be able to attract rich tourists from around the world, who want to spend $25,000 on luxury goods, while on vacation. Will they buy a Prada handbag here for $16,000, that costs $5,000 in Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, London, New York, Paris, Rome, Milan, Monaco, Prague, Moscow, Istanbul, or Dubai? Of course not. What will they do? They will choose any one of those spots, and others for vacation, and Thailand will never even be discussed. Sorry to say, but the high spending tourists are lost for good. They WILL NOT come back to Thailand, for a dozen different reasons.
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