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xyzzy last won the day on June 23 2020

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  1. I didn't see Soi MIT posted here. I must be blind.
  2. I likewise have purchased miles from Alaska Air. Because one can book Cathay Pacific (you have to call Alaska Air, can't do it online) Business class for 100k mile (round trip/return). If I catch a sale on Alaska enough miles for Cathay Business round trip/return can be purchased for ~US$2k with taxes. As I recall Japan Air has some OK deals there (online) also if you can't get Cathay. United generally sucks when it comes to miles. There one way Business USA/BKK (BKK/USA) is usually 99k miles. Buying miles is not inexpensive. And often if you need to fly to the west coast to catch the trans Pacific flight that flight is Economy and not Business. United has terrible fairs internationally one way (often more expensive than RT/return total). If I use United miles BKK/NRT/DEN I book the outbound trip on another airline. I'm almost at that 99k number now and after I get it I will probably acquire miles on some other airline (probably Alaska). Sadly United is the only airline that flies NRT/DEN nonstop but it is almost impossible to book with miles. United can get me to BKK in Business on short notice with miles so there are some perks with United if you have the miles.
  3. xyzzy


    Thailand has been added to the USA "avoid travel" list. I keep trying to find an excuse to try a January trip. But the idea grows dim...
  4. Sorry I'm apparently not smart enough to know how to report the above post as SPAM.
  5. AstraZeneca just released new phase three trial data in the US that showed it's efficacy was 68%. A little better than J&J and much worse than Pfizer and Moderna. But I guess all this data is on the original strain. I don't know what the scoop is in EU but the blood clot thing didn't really seem to amount to much. At least that is what we hear over here. Apparently if you take any of these vaccines and still catch COVID your chance of getting seriously ill is near zero. But even if you caught a mild case in Thailand a big chunk of your trip could be ruined, you might get stuck in Thailand, etc. The latest data I saw was AstraZeneca was 10.4% effective in preventing the South African variant. Thailand has purchased 61 million does of AstraZeneca although they did just approve J&J. So if the S. African variant runs wild things might not be so good. It's one thing to contract something that might be a strong as the flu where you could stay at home and ride it out. Quite another to be in Thailand where what we do involves very close contact with other humans. I haven't booked my January 2022 trip yet. But booking with miles I need to book early so it's about time to roll the dice.
  6. I am fully vaccinated (Moderna). I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised if some kind of booster shot is needed by winter for the new variants. AstraZeneca was so ineffective against the South African variant they stopped using it in S. Africa for a while. And of course Thailand is pretty much all in on AstraZeneca. I likely will accept a week in quarantine for a two month trip. I don't want to and has been said maybe that will change. Hopefully it won't change for the worse.
  7. Also the AZ vaccine seems to not be terribly effective against the South African strain.
  8. xyzzy


  9. I did the Christmas Styrofoam snow thing there once as well as at TQ2. It was fun once or twice.
  10. I'll pack up my guns and head there now.
  11. xyzzy


    Unfortunately there are a lot of things that should have never happened. But the rest of the world wanted cheap goods from China or needed their bad economies rescued. And now in many products, if push came to shove, China has almost complete control over the rest of the world. It would damage the fairly newly created "middle class" if China flexed their muscle. But China has drawn farther away from the capitalist path, and concern for their citizens, in recent years under Xi. Unless there is some SERIOUS international initiatives in the coming years little will change. And that might be wishful thinking.
  12. xyzzy


    Sadly China has mostly cornered the market on rare earth minerals. If you don't know what that is you should do a web search and some reading. The US used to produce a lot but sold their biggest company to China long ago. There was some kind of effort going on to restart the industry in the US but China has us mostly by the balls. As they do with ingredients to make many medicines, etc.
  13. xyzzy


    I was watching CNBC business network early this morning when the Moderna CEO was on and talking about the results. I knew those 5AM "old man gotta get up and go to the head" bathroom trips would pay off eventually. Later there was a discussion about what happens if the vaccines still to come are only 70-80% effective. In the past 70% wasn't considered so bad. But everyone will want the 90%+ vaccines. Until there is enough for everyone 70% is better than 0% I guess.
  14. xyzzy


    This suggests maybe April in the US. https://news.yahoo.com/pfizer-gearing-distribute-covid-19-233912893.html
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