Archive for February 2022
The English Sunday Roast Dinners Of Thailand
If I were asked what I love about Thailand the most, I could answer in many ways.
It's plain hard to not mention that you see amazingly beautiful, pretty, cute, and mignon young women every day who will always smile if you greet them politely—even at my age. It's a polite dirty old man's paradise. I was witness to polite dirty old man as a kid, watching my grandfather. he was so dapper and pithy with a tongue-in-cheek grin, it made everyone laugh—including my grandmother.
I didn't think and reflect on it back then, but now that I'm that, I surmise that it's a sort of targeted and measured self-deprecation that's made acceptable, welcome, and humorous by being only mildly suggestive—never vulgar—up to a level of honest and wholesome flattery. Everyone knows that men, no matter their age, appreciate the sexuality of young, prime, and attractive women the most. It's nature's way. It's OK to acknowledge that when done politely and tastefully. You're not dealing in reality if you harbor the fantasy that only bad and awful old men are turned on by young and beautiful women. Imagine life if all men at all times were not... It's just part of what makes the world turn for the better.
...The other thing anyone can mention about Thailand is that it's a crazy beautiful country. I was on a vid chat with Lothar "Lute" Nikoley the other night while he was visiting Reno, NV, at a steak dinner with three of his younger brothers—Ingo, Wolfgang, and Ewe—where I got to vid-chat with all of them, my uncles with a 61yo nephew. Dad then tells me he was looking into Thailand a bit and it's about 2 times the surface area of California. Yea, it can surprise you, the driving distances from edge to edge. Here in Phuket, I'm 1,400 KM from the village home in Sisaket.
I've traversed and taken a lot in over the space of two years.
...Then there are the islands of Thailand, hundreds of them. Check it out. I did a post about the ones I've visited and now live on.Read More
The Definitive Thinking On Russia and Ukraine
First of all, it's no more our business than it would be Russia's if the US decided to invade Mexico because south America was enticing them into an alliance to counter US interests.
The USA as the global policeman is as outdated as was its involvement in Korea and Vietnam. Both were disasters and life-suckers that had no practical value beyond SHOWING STRENGTH!!! and SENDING A MESSAGE!!! Last I checked, North Korea is still there decades later and is as primitive as ever. Vietnam, decades later, is developing as a sort of hybrid authoritarian state...China-like model. What did the US really do there? What are the nuanced influences as to how geopolitics and the cold war played out over the remainder of the 70s and 80s? Fuck if I know.
And since, the US's police-action stuff has been equally life sucking bullshit. One after a fucking another.Read More
International Living By Geoarbitrage
I kick off a series of posts amongst my other ongoing series that’s of deep interest to me and I hope, to many others who’ve always maybe wondered or dreamed about living in a country other than the one they live in by the accident of birth. [This series has now been incorporated into Prosper…Read More
The Tinder Swindler
I got an email this morning from a woman in her late 40s I've known for some years who keeps herself sexy and attractive. Yep, she's Asian. Go Figure.
If you're bored, you could invite Curt to do a duo-rant about the film's content. Everyone else in the manosphere's doing it so why not you guys?
I suppose one of the things I like about her—beyond my respect for her in keeping herself sexy and desirable—is that she never shies away from giving me a dose of motivation and no, I have zero idea what truly motivates it. I like best to think shit test, where she think's enough of me to zing it my way. But perhaps I'm delusional and my senses are still clouded by her charms.
That's to say that I think she has a sincere interest in doing whatever part she can play in making a better man of me; which especially means not putting up with chick bullshit—but in such a way as where the not putting up with is more elegant, manly, respectful, diligent, firm, and sort of loving. All at the same time.
In so many ways and senses, I've just described gentlemanliness.
Though she doesn't know it or ever acknowledge it, I always see the message under the message. I'm very agnostic about the personality underlying anything I receive in writing or their motivations in sending it to me. I wish there was an option in all communication mediums to hide the identity of the sender until you unhide it. That way, you could judge the content before knowing who sent it, so that you don't prejudge either way.
...I watched this film a couple of weeks back. It took me a couple of evenings because at first, I thought it was fictional. I realized it was a real documentary and I was a bit floored. But I recalled what my visceral reaction was to the young nice women victimized by the swindle.
Here's the trailer but it's overly dramatic. The actual documentary is pretty damn forensic.
I replied to my interlocutor early this morning over coffee. Later, it kept nagging at me that I was unsatisfied with my response, so I wrote another in 15 minutes, with whiskey. What follows is the edited version of that:Read More
Just a random spilling of things on this Wednesday morning of certain interest to the hundreds of members—a number approaching 1,000. That will be a nice milestone.Read More
Business And Economics: Numbers Always Rule
I know that many members aren't super interested in my specifically Thailand stuff. I get that, and especially if turning this into a travel log-blog. So, I do keep that light. Conversely, it seems everyone loves my personal life stuff...especially when I mention Chili and Wasabi, the—now—13 and 11 year old girls of my Thai woman. I'm working and struggling behind the scenes on that. I have big plans for those two sweethearts whom I love and adore and who have never said a cross word to me in two years.
This uses Thailand and my familiarity with it on all levels as a backdrop for a far greater lesson that applies to all of modern civilization.
Numbers 1 and 3, above, are prescient. Since the "influx" of 10% of the international tourists who used to come have been arriving for 8 months or so ("Phuket Sandbox"), I have so seen and heard first hand those issues the chart-poll highlights and most commonly, "I'll never come back until I can come like before." This, primarily from vaccinated people.
This is the great blind spot in all of this nonsense. They think smartphones with digital ID green card shit is going to usher in their Brave New World.
No, it fucking won't and that push is getting a bigger push: back.
It must have been a year ago I said "wait, it's inevitable." To all the stupid deer in headlights, I'd add, "money rules."
This is a country amongst others where tourism makes up an enormous portion of their annual income. In the case of Thailand, just one example, it's 1/5th...20%. What happens when you chop your arm off? You bleed to death or you become measurably dysfunctional compared to where you were.
It's amazing how ignorant Thais and expats are, surrounding and suffocating me from simple rationality and economic reality.
- It will never be over, new normal
- It will be over when they've stopped Covid
- Bullshit, bullshit, and more bullshit higher and deeper
IT WILL BE OVER WHEN NUMBERS AND REALITY SAY IT CAN'T NOT BE OVER.Read More
If You Thought It Was Theater You Were Right
Happy Sunday evening, Americans. And, whatever time it is elsewhere. It's Monday morning in my neck of the global woods.
Short and sweet.
There was a big-ass mask study.
It had a bunch of authors and was written by scientists from Stanford and Yale, now published in Science.
JASON ABALUCK LAURA H. KWONG ASHLEY STYCZYNSKI ASHRAFUL HAQUE ALAMGIR KABIR ELLEN BATES-JEFFERYS EMILY CRAWFORD JADE BENJAMIN-CHUNG HABIB RAIHAN SHADMAN RAHMANSALIM BENHACHMI NEETI ZAMAN BINTEEPETER J. WINCH MAQSUD HOSSAIN SAN MAHMUD REZA ABDULLAH ALL JABER SHAWKEE GULSHAN MOMEN AURA RAHMAN TAHRIMA SAIHA HUQSTEPHEN P. LUBY AHMED MUSHFIQ MOBARAK
They lied. All those grant whores lied.Read More
Two Teenage Boys Die Totally Unremarkably In Their Sleep
—It's For The Children And The Greater Good
This is a rough and tumble for the public at large. Nobody is safe, including me. Fasten seatbelts. You should expect turbulence. If it doesn't kill you, perhaps you come out stronger.
I'll quote Alex Berenson from his Telegram feed.
The journal of the College of American Pathologists has a stunning report today on the cases of two teen boys who died following mRNA Covid vaccines.
Both boys died in their sleep less than a week after the second dose, and neither had any known health conditions prior to death.
The report’s lead author is Dr. James Gill, the chief medical examiner for the state of Connecticut and the 2021 President of the National Association of Medical Examiners.
Myocarditis requiring hospitalization is known to occur in up to 1 in 2,000 teenage boys and young men at rates following mRNA jabs - a rate far higher than the rate caused by Covid infection.
In these cases, autopsies of the two teenagers found evidence of myocarditis - heart inflammation - that appeared very different than the standard presentation of myocarditis. The report suggested a hyper-inflammatory cytokine response could have driven the damage.
Nothing to see here. HAPPENS ALL THE TIME!!!
For the political left, it's FAKE NEWS!!! and for the political right, it should be the standard thing hauled out for decades. It's honorable.
I'm not being facetious. Rather, I'm standing on principal and an aversion to meaningless distinction.
Hasn't it always been about Keeping The American End Up by means of sacrificing the youngest and bravest (and indoctrinated) young men to war after war after war after endless war? ...All the trappings...with flags draped all over, pressed uniforms, gun salutes, and a pretty...GRAVE!!!
Such consolations...Read More
Get Your Social Security The Minute You Can
You'll learn it's not even comparable and might make you a few hundred Gs you might not get otherwise. Calculate hard.
I'm going to run you through the numbers using myself as an example since I qualify for "early" payments of a small fraction of what I've paid in since the age of 9 (53 years of paying by the age 62). Had I invested that money over that period in compounding securities I'd have millions.
But it is what it is. I'm not going to deal with the moral arguments.
- Yes it's abject socialism
- Yes it's coercion
- Yes it's a Ponzi scheme—legalized by the government for the government
- Yes it's regressive taxation (I'll explain why as an aside)
The other day I got an email from the Social Security Administration giving me a link to my record and an opportunity to check up on it, to make sure it's all correct and so forth. I hadn't seen anything in a while that I recall, so I checked in. I had not really realized I'm only a year away from "retirement," or, as they put it, "early retirement," "early benefits," early EARLY EARLY!!!
They don't do a hard sell to get you to wait until "full retirement" or "full benefits," but if you go around and about Googling, it's always couched in such terms. It's like a subtile nudge to shame you into waiting longer. ...Sort of a suggested delayed gratification thing.
- Social Security as a regressive tax highly beneficial to the well off and rich
- My own social security record
- The easy case for taking benefits at 62 vs. 67 with simple math
- Bonus Disaster Image; Tangential
Social Security as a regressive tax highly beneficial to the well off and rich
There's a few elements to this.
The first and biggest one is that which most employees never know about until they go off to leave their jobs (W-2 income) and start their own businesses dream (1099 income or many other tax forms depending on how the business is structured). Yea, they saw the social security deductions in their paychecks all those years, but didn't realize that it was only half of their tax. The other half was paid by their employer. It's split into social security and medicare but in total is about 15%—half and half employee and employer.
They go off, start a business, and make income—likely less than when employed, at least for a while—and when they file their first tax return, realize they're now on the hook for the entire 15%. Their tax just doubled. Way to incentivize entrepreneurial spirit and achievement leading to the real creation of jobs for others.
It get's worse for small to medium sized businesses where you're hauling in less than about $143,000 per year. That's the cap. In other words, you pay 15% up to $143K and then zero after that. So, no matter how much you make, your total load is capped at $21,000 for SS and medicare. You make $143,000, you pay $21K. Make $1 Billion, you pay $21K.
Regressive as fuck, eh?
It get's worse. This is the main trick of the wealthy to get tax liability down to a pittance compared to others in percentage terms. You go passive income. But, to live off passive income to the tune of, say, $100,000 per year, you need $1,000,000 in the bank or investments making 10% average and solid. If you're doing 3%, you need $3 Mil. If you're in passbook savings, you need $10 Mil. (Caveat: I'm no tax accountant or lawyer and so don't know if some forms of passive income are more equal than others...see below.)
Once upon a time I was discussing with a smart fried—a Harvard grad and author of published books—the ins & outs of taxation and he hauled out Warren Buffet who back in those days was spouting how TAXES NEED TO BE RAISED!!! because he was paying so little.
In addition to telling him that the IRS probably wouldn't refuse a check from him for a few billion, I asked him if he had a clue as to why. Of course, he did not. It's because all of Buffet's income is passive, i.e., from investments and not from working for the man or even working directly, hands on.
If your income is derived passively from investments, two things:
- There's no social security or medicare tax
- Your income tax is about...wait for it...15% (what a coincidence)
I did this in my own company. At the time, I was taking substantial straight W-2 income and the taxes are insane once you get up to the $200K and above level. I started crunching numbers and it was clear.
- Reorganize from a C Corp to an S Corp
- Hire a "Manager" (so-called CEO or President)
- Run the business at arms length through that employee, making your income passive
- Take all my income as K-1 (an IRS form), reducing my tax to zero social security / medicare, to 15% straight income tax
Saved me a ton, plus I had shit-tons of time on my hands with plenty of capital. Sure wish I had played that end of it better....
My own social security record
I still have 3 years (2020, 2021, and 2022) to boost this. No, I have not filed for even 2020 yet...working on it. But, here's how it stands even if there's no additional "contributions."Read More
Richard Nikoley 61 yo Appearance Update
The former was in the summer of 2019 when I was 59 years old, and the latter, just snapped a few minutes ago. I'm now 61.
What happened? Well, testosterone increase happened, written about here and here.
But that's a pretty stark physical appearance change and it has happened rapidly in spite of bad habits like drinking whiskey and smoking cigarettes.
- What REALLY Happened?
- What Drives Me
- Become Disinterested In Food And Embrace Hunger
- Get A Scar On Your Face
- Be a Ruffian
- What Increases Testosterone?
- Leave The Toilet Seat Up
What REALLY Happened?Read More
Breaker Breaker 1-9: Keep On Truckin’
It was about 1977 when my friend Mike Walton came over to tell me that his dad had just put a CB radio in their car. It was at a church function and so while all the adults where inside doing their church-social things, we were out in the parking lot teenage-boying this newfangled communication device.
- I Become a CB Geek At 16
- Citizen's Band Radio and Truckers
- My 1979 Cross Country Drive Talking With Truckers
I Become a CB Geek At 16Read More
We The Powerless People…Becoming Conscious
You know, when you look at a pyramid, we've been manipulated to believe the power in a pyramid is at the top.
The top of the pyramid is there because the rest of the pyramid's holding it up.
We are holding this whole thing together.
We, the powerless people are holding the powerful people up there and they know that.
They're terrified of us realizing that.Read More
Someone Really Cool Spoke With Someone Really Cool
Hope you all had a nice Super Bowl Sunday and if into it, enjoyed the game. Yea, there has been a well-deserved pushback comeuppance about employees doing their political activism on company time, but perhaps they've mostly given that shit up because it's an awful look.
Here in Thailand, the annual Super Bowl live takes place on Monday morning, starting about 6.30am. Sports bars with the big screens and gear open as early as 5am for the pre-game stuff. Early drinking is assured.
...What I like more than the actual game is going out to take in a bunch of Euro expats all coming together to watch America's biggest FOOTBALL game, ha! The rest of the year and in all the places, they're watching "matches"—which I like to characterize as like watching porn. If you've seen one soccer game, you've seen them all. He came once or twice, she came once or twice. Three times...well...that's more rare.
You can Google lots of stuff about how much the American political and social commentator Ann Coulter dislikes soccer. Here's a funny quote.
"Soccer fans have decided to prove me wrong about soccer being a fruity sport by spending the last week throwing hissy fits."
I suppose I digress too much.
I wasn't sure I'd go, even though the Stoned Crab pub is no more than about a mile away. I'd been sitting at my desk since 7am, game stated 6:30am, and by 9am I was hungry and did my own private what the fuck thing, hopped on the motorbike maskless—hair in the morning breeze—and headed on down.
When it takes 30 seconds to find a place to park a motorcycle, it's packed. 100+ people watching 2-dozen screens. Still, coffee and some scrambled eggs, bacon, and toast was forthcoming forthwith.
It was just the start of the 4th Quarter, Rams down 4 against Bengals, 16-20. My first thought was WHEW!!! Only mammals. No endangered species, cultural icons, indigenous peoples...
...Imagine is there was a team called the Squaws... Oh, wait... That would be in soccer...
I've really got no dogs in any races or fights, but I don't know fuck of Ohio or Cincinnati, so I decided to bestow all of my moral authority and presence of spirit to the Los Angeles Rams for 15 minutes of game time.
That was uplifting, if you watched the game.
...Then I came home, sat at my desk for more doing what I do, then walked down 30 meters to the pool. It was 5 steps in my last place.... I get in on a wonderfully hot day here in south Phuket and whereas the pool is almost always empty, there's a family in the pool. Man, wife, 2yo naked boy, and a couple of others, friends or family. They're speaking amongst themselves, sounds Russian. They're teaching the boy to swim. They form a ring, about 10 feet diameter, toss him in the middle.
Sink or swim.
He didn't panic, likely because he knew and could see his people. He got better and better each time.
That was my entry and I began applauding and making light encouraging comments and so the conversation strikes up. Their English is very good.
Punchline: They're Ukrainians and actually live in Florida. They've lived there for 5 years, green cards, and he's a professional poker player.
What a small world after all.
So that's the monologue. Now to the meat course.Read More
The 2022 Olympic Clown-Car Circus — Get Woke Go Broke
There's a lot that could be said about this, but I'm just going to mock a few things, laugh, and give it a rest.
Foremost, I find it delicious in a schadenfreude sort of way.
I hadn't seen a bit of it until a trip for breakfast the other day to a sports pub where they had it on while nobody was watching. Yesterday, same thing in an afternoon pub I go to for socialization with mainly Euro expats but otherwise ok dudes. Olympics on the TV, nobody watching, nobody talking about it, nobody giving a fuck or runny shit.
One simple question one might ask about WINTER GAMES is, does it snow?Read More
Za Great Reset Is On A Ventilator
I ought not have this silly sense that interest in the whole 2-year disaster is waning all the while public protestations and demonstrations are intensifying.
Yet that's the reality.
For two years I've written about the whole dumbness, and with plenty of science references and even my own data crunching. The public is disinterested in that generally. So, I write for a few thousand global niche geeks who endeavor to understand what makes people so dumb and compliant. ...Incurious, really—my sense of Original Sin.
So, one could jeer that I TOLD YOU THIS TWO FUCKING YEARS AGO!!!
But I chalk it up to a gift horse and watch as there's too much action on the ground to account for—as some double down, and where more astute countries are racing to extricate themselves from the mess they created for political gain.
Only the truly foolish don't understand that the gig is up. They way overplayed their hand—visions of sugar-plum great resets dancing in their heads—and the few holdouts may go down with the ship if they don't back off pretty quick. There're some who know very well that their political careers are done for. They're watching, waiting, and looking for hail marry's to snag from thin air.
There will be none.
Covid infections are at their highest ever globally.Read More
Lending Money In The 3rd World — It May Surprise You
I think I have an unconventional or unique take on money lending and this post is an effort to tell the story of how I got to this way of thinking about it.
- What's debt?
- What's money?
- How do you create money?
- What is the value of a sound human promise to repay?
- My personal experience with human promises to repay
- Lending in Thailand
The conventional view is the one everyone already knows.
- You get a job
- You have a steady income
- You buy things above what you make and take on debt
- You make monthly payments on that debt
- Your creditors report your payment record to credit bureaus
- Credit bureaus establish a file on you and issue a score
- You use that score to get more and better things above what you make, and take on even more debt
What you may not fully understand is that most money is made in the lending industry from those always hanging on by the skin of their teeth.
Those who use credit judiciously? They're like the 99 cents ham & eggs at a casino or the gas pumps in front of a convenience store—loss leaders. If you don't already understand what a loss leader is, that's when a business sells something attractive at break even or even a loss, in order to boost the number of customers passing through, and some will be enticed toward the high-profit margin stuff.
Yep, you only paid 99 cents for your ham & eggs, but then you dropped $20 in the casino on the way out. You got the cheapest gas in town, then loaded up with junk food at a 300% profit margin. You get the idea. All simple stuff that everyone's aware of.
Fundamentally: debt is a product you buy.
Where is the nuance? There's lots and some not so obvious. So here we go. This debt thing get's revisited with a surprise.Read More
Bernie Sanders — A Clock Stopped Right On Time
I dislike gratuitous use of screen clips to characterize or caricature what you might be writing about. It's a cheap shot and I'm guilty of it too. Just not this time.
So in this case, I looked to find what I think is a flattering image of Bernie. I like it. It's old-dude endearing (in which my own needs grow), probably more honest than most. Don't get me wrong. His ideas—throughout a lifetime of a non-working career, including US Senator—are as goofy as a football bat.
...I thought I'd take a look at Congressional Pay in current dollars. It's pretty all over the map early on. It changed a lot. But it's enlightening to see that congressmen and senators were paid $206,000 in 1907 (in inflation adjusted USD, to 2019). In 2009, their pay was $207,000 in 2019 dollars.
Seems they keep a better hand on inflation than that to which their legislation would attest. They've taken a hit in real terms of inflation vs. salary over the last decade or so. I don't suppose the stupid shit they do as "lawmakers" has anything to do with that. I digress.
So, to the rather astounding point of the post.
It comes to pass that Bernie did a short but prescient and surprising thing;Read More
I Want My Biden-Harris Commemorative Pipe
The truth is, I woke up this morning feeling off. ...The whole world is screwed, what's the point, yada yada...
Happens to everyone at times. To shake it off after a coupla cups of Joe and a smoke, I decided to delve into a nagging issue with the membership configuration here. I had this "great idea" initially to make it a-la-cart in terms of 4 separate levels of monthly membership. While it got great initial adoption, it soon proved to be cumbersome for both myself and paying subscribers. I went a different way. Monthly or annual at a 30% discount, and then stuff really took off.
- How I changed my morning outlook by diving into something
- Free crack pipes for curing systemic racism
- Next: the neologism "blackcent" cracks me up
Freeloader Time And Attention Sinks
Over the years I have always endeavored to do two things, and those were to be as engaging as possible with all who read this blog—even if it culminated in an FU either way. Up until April of last year ('21), that required reading every comment, replying to about a third of them statistically, overall, and personally replying to nearly every email, even if just to personally acknowledge with a "thanks" or "got it." It takes more time and focus than actually writing the blog. I take pride in reading every email.
Last April I transformed into to a membership space for free and paid members. But I still do plenty of public posts and the older archives are mostly public so crawlers will keep them indexed in the search engines, an advantage of having thousands of them.
After a while, I began to notice a trend. It's a very stark one in terms of from which category I get the most emails. It should not be as surprising as it is, but it's stark.
From whom do I get the most emails and why do I think that is?Read More
“I Don’t Answer Questions” With A Smile
Just a little blurb on a Monday morning here, Sunday evening or night-night for most of youz in the USA.
...For years, the more libertarian advice is "don't talk to police." It's good advice.
A few days ago a commenter steered me to an FX series entitled...