Is SBY A Genius?
I only ask because he's currently attending the APEC conference in Singapore and next month he's off to Copenhagen
"to give a boost to global negotiations to reduce greenhouse gas emission".
He's facing a lot of criticism back home for not interceding in the four ring circus that is the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) v the National Police, the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and the newly elected national legislature.
He talks of allowing the due process of law in the case and of eradicating the 'court mafia'. The first is eminently sensible, yet there is no news of an action, any action, which will achieve the latter. Because corruption is now endemic throughout the country, perhaps he is calmly developing a long-term strategy. Perhaps
too he is going to act on the recommendations from the Team of 8 he set up to question all the circus performers.
That witnesses and players have withdrawn testimonies and now say that the senior police and AGO prosecutors were the instigators of a frame up of the head of the KK, Antasari, in a murder case and that there is no evidence that Bibit And Chandra took bribes is 'proof' of what the public has long suspected.
And it is the public, essentially the middle classes, which is now driving matters through what the Post has labelled a street parliament
As it hasn't taken long for the newly elected national legislators to face public scorn, the street and online support for the victims of framed corruption fighters offers a strong counter-balance against the entrenched Suhartoists.
Perhaps this is what SBY is seeking. Although he has the popular electoral mandate, he must know that he cannot depend on his parliamentary coalition, not least because they will be continually manoevering ahead of the next round of elections in order to best capitalise on the rewards (in financial terms!) that political power confers.
The only problem is that the electorate is, by and large, complaisant. If one were to use the schooling analogy, the electorate is still in compulsory education: the Sukarno presidential era was the kindergarden, the Suharto era was grades one to six, and we're now in the high school, rebellious teenage years. This is when taking responsibility is a major part of growing up, yet parental guidance is generally available when sought.
If the net result of the SBY era is entrance into the university of life with the understanding that personal freedom and enterprise depends on mutual respect rather than the playground bullying of earlier years, then he will be recognised as a great man, if not exactly a genius.
And the education of our children and grandchildren will be that much more effective.