Saturday, July 25, 2009
  Much Ado About Nothing Much

When there's little news to report, it seems the media writes about it. As a frequent commentator on current issues, I am now, therefore, offering you nothing much.

Last week's bombing outrage is obviously the lead story here, although it has become intertwined with SBY's "landslide" win in the recent Presidential election.

Few of us can comprehend what it is that drives young men, and occasionally young women, to blow themselves up. Indonesia's suicide bombers aren't living - let me rephrase that - didn't live under siege. They aren't Palestinians.

Most of us follow paths which reveal the consequences of our actions, but if we end up cavorting with 72 virgins in the hereafter, more than likely we'd be too busy to care about the devastation we've left in our trails. (I'm a bit curious to know if female bombers are promised the same 'reward'.)

That the suicide squad were meticulous in their planning indicates an obvious mastermind. The police discovered that the room they'd booked themselves into in the JW Marriott hotel contained a third bomb.

The UK Guardian carried this news item on it's front page yesterday (Friday), which I found strange as most of us knew about it on Monday.

"It is clear that the bomb found inside the hotel was equipped with a timer that shows the time of the [failed] explosion," said Ketut Untung Yoga of the national police. "It was supposed to explode before the other two."

The explosion would probably have sent panicked crowds fleeing to the ground floors, where a suicide attacker detonated his explosives pack.

As for the bombers, names were quickly given out, DNA tests on family members were carried out and then it was announced that, in spite of drawings of the two heads, which had been blown off their torsos, being published, the alleged bombers weren't. At least the police have been honest, at last, about having made little progress in their investigation

Much has been written and commented about SBY's 'performance' at his on-site press conference, which he delayed in order to perform his Friday prayer rituals. Anand Krishna has written most eloquently about the need for introspection.

We have made a serious blunder by defining ritual as religion, and prioritizing it over the performance of our duties.

Rituals are means of awakening the spirit of religiosity within us, not the end of religion. By becoming ritualistic, I do not necessarily become religious. Hands that help are better than lips that pray.

I can worship while working, and pray while performing my duties not only toward my immediate family, but also toward my country, my nation and the world family.

When SBY did speak, he intimated that there were forces, unnamed but widely perceived to be Megawati's choice as potential Vice President, attempting to derail his reelection as President.

The announcement of his win by the KPU, Indonesia's is possibly being made as I type this. There will certainly be legal challenges to the result by the losing pairs, not that they will make any difference as the winning margin is too great. However, if irregularities can be proven then, hopefully, everything will be sorted out and hunky dory next time round, in 2014.

One cloudy issue concerns the elections for the legislature which were held on April 9th. A system of proportional representation with transferable votes was adopted for the first time. Although there are times that this system can lead to a lack of clear purpose as coalitions rarely work, I believe that it is inherently fairer to the electorate than the first-past-the post system as practised in the UK which can disenfranchise much of the electorate and emphasise social divisions and leading to civil strife (vide Thatcher).

This week the Supreme Court has 'over-ruled' a Constitutional Court ruling and now seats previously allocated to minority parties will be handied over to the three major parties, SBY's Demokrat, Megawati's PDI-P and to Golkar, the 'functional' group of yes-men established by Suharto.

The Post's headline says it all - Chaos looms in KPU-vs-court fiasco

KPU chairman Abdul Hafiz Anshary said, "I have to stress that in principle, the KPU will abide by all legally binding decisions, but first of all, we will decide on how to implement the Constitutional Court's ruling, and then Supreme Court's first decision on the third phase of ballot counting.

"Then we'll decide on how to implement the Supreme Court's decision on the second phase."

And then we'll have another election?
In my ambivalence - perhaps ambiguous is a better word - role of being a Brit abroad, I regularly point out that what I find strange here is merely an echo of what I find strange there.

So go figure this classic example of British bureaucratese.

Pubs are a vital part of local communities, but the consumption of too much alcohol can lead to disorderly conduct. So a year ago the government introduced Alcohol Disorder Zones as a way to curb binge drinking and related anti-social behaviour. These supposedly give councils the power to charge clubs, bars and restaurants an extra levy to pay for increased policing in areas where drunks have been causing problems for residents.

To date, no local authority has introduced one.

A government Home Office spokesman stated the following: "The fact that there are not any Alcohol Disorder Zones does not suggest that they are not working."
By the way, when I uploaded the Jakarta Post this morning, yesterday's edition incidentally, the lead story was of Mark Cavendish of Britain winning the 19th stage of the Tour de Frace (sic). Was the Post influenced by my trivial post on Wednesday?


2:30 pm
Alien Thoughts from Home

Home Thoughts from Abroad

Interactive World Time

Indonesian Dictionary

Indonesian Acronyms

Indonesian Slang

Learn Indonesian

Currency Converter

Email Me

The WeatherPixie

5 Day Forecast

Get Firefox!

  • West Sumatra Earthquake Aid Agencies
  • Sidoarjo Mud Volcano
  • Reports on Crashes and Sinkings

  • Living in Indonesia
  • Tempo
  • Bugils News
  • Jakarta Post
  • Jakarta Globe
  • Down To Earth
  • Loads of Advice
  • Inside Indonesia
  • Green Indonesia
  • Hobson's Choice
  • Gunung Bagging - New - clamber volcanoes
  • Indonesian Music
  • Indahnesia Online
  • Maps of Indonesia
  • Indonesia For Kids - blog
  • Green Group Links
  • Faces of Indonesia - blog
  • Photos of Indonesia
  • Indonesian Publications
  • International Crisis Group
  • Indonesian Engaged Travel - blog
  • Outside The Indonesian Box - blog
  • Indonesian Corruption Watch
  • News and Events Aggregators
  • Indonesia's Vegetarian Restaurants

  • Living in Jakarta
  • Culture Shock - Jakarta - 'my' book
  • Bataviase - loads of info in Indonesian
  • Rujak.org - for a sustainable Jakarta
  • Jakarta Kid - stories of street kids
  • Jakarta Events - as it says in the title
  • Map of Jakarta
  • Jakarta Nite Out
  • Jakarta Nite Out - for Francophiles
  • Jakarta 100 Bars - as it says in the title
  • Jakarta Java Kini - upmarket magazine
  • Jakarta Urban Blog- as it says in the title
  • Jakarta Green Map
  • Jakarta Daily Photo - as it says in the title
  • Jakarta? Been there!
  • Protecting Jakarta Bay
  • Nightlife - for single guys - check the forums
  • Jakarta Restaurant Reviews - as it says in the title

  • Living in Bali
  • Hector - at Bali Times
  • Bali Spirit
  • Bali Expat Forum
  • Nusa Lembongan News
  • I've Been To Bali Too Blog - defunct but still good stuff

  • Education Matters
  • Education 21
  • Performing Monkeys
  • Yayasan Goodwill International

  • Pre-Independence History
  • 1941-1942
  • A Family Tale

  • Del Boy - my multi-talented co-author
  • Hotel Rimbo - a mate
  • Ethos Travel - Son No.1
  • Indo Fair Traders
  • Organic Vanilla
  • Merdeka Coffee
  • Pekerti Nusantara

  • Indonesian Blogs in English
  • Top Blogs
  • Merdeka - aggregator
  • Elyani - good stuff
  • Therry - good stuff
  • Om'Bak - group thoughts
  • Yosef Ardi - business gossip
  • Treespotter - his serious blog
  • Milk Tea Girl - poems and stuff
  • Bitching Babe - another slice
  • Café Salemba - ekonomi +
  • Enda Nasution - The Guv'nor
  • Aroeng Binang - a neighbour
  • Harry Nizam H. - legal practitioner
  • Ethereal Shards - youthful ponderings
  • Muli's Commune - defunct but good links
  • Isman H. Suryaman - not a 'Fool'
  • Rasyad A. Parinduri - ekonomi
  • Tasa Nugraza Barley - returned from the USA
  • Indonesia Anonymus - infrequent but always good

  • Indonesian Expats
  • Naz - a "12.5% Indonesian" in Norway
  • Bleu - in Malaysia
  • Anita - in Scotland
  • Maya - in Antibes
  • The Writer - in Denmark
  • Spew-It-All - in Australia
  • Jennie Bev - in SF
  • Rima Fauzi - in Belgium
  • Nadia Febina - in Angola
  • Society of Spectacle - in Berlin
  • Overseas Think Tank - for Indonesia
  • Indonesians Living Abroad Forum - as it says in the title

  • Expat Bloggers in Indonesia
  • PJ Bali - oil worker
  • Mat Solo - Malaysian oil worker
  • Jenny Q - an expat wife
  • Dr Bruce - retired teacher in Bali
  • Spruiked - Brett's take on things
  • Indoprism - an expat family
  • Java Jive - original photoblog (now in the Phillipines)
  • Amor Fati - good links
  • Metro Mad - Jakarta Globe columnist
  • Rob Baiton - back in Oz
  • Jakarta Kid - about street kids
  • Green Stump - in Kalimantan
  • Most Curious - née Betty Loves Blogging
  • The Mad Rotter - Henk loves Indonesian music
  • Duncan Graham - journo archives
  • Hardship Posting - more wtf
  • Indonesia Matters - loads of stuff
  • The Opinionated Diner - and NZ music
  • Patrick Guntensperger - has opinions on current issues

  • Selected Aseanist Blogs
  • SARAwho? - Southeast Asia Aggregator
  • Pelf-ism is Contagious
  • Brommel - usually in Indonesia
  • Friskodude - SF travel writer
  • Klong Walking - an Addick in Bangkok
  • Agam's Gecko - musings from Thailand

  • London Blogs
  • Diamond Geezer
  • London Daily Nature Photo
  • London Bloggers Tube Map

  • Other Fave Blogs
  • Aangirfan - who is s/he?
  • Ad Busters - ecological economic sense
  • Samizdata.net
  • Strange Games
  • The J-Walk Blog
  • Environmental Graffiti

  • Charlton
  • Doctor Kish
  • Inspector Sands
  • Forever Charlton
  • Official Charlton site
  • Addickted to Blogs
  • Ex-Charlton forward in Belize

  • I'm an Aging Hippie
  • Man
  • XTC
  • World Changing
  • MoonJune Records
  • Canterbury Sounds

  • My Youth
  • Blackheath
  • Charlton Lido
  • Charlton House
  • Woolwich Ferry
  • Greenwich Park
  • Severndroog Castle
  • Overlapping Memories
  • More Overlapping Memories
  • Map of My Stomping Ground

  • Put Your Feet Up
  • Biscuit of the week
  • 50's British TV Nostalgia
  • Hello Children, Everywhere

  • Enter your Email

    Subscribe with Bloglines

    Locations of visitors to this page


    eXTReMe Tracker

    Listed on BlogShares

    Personal Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory

  • May 1998
  • March 2004
  • April 2004
  • May 2004
  • June 2004
  • July 2004
  • August 2004
  • September 2004
  • October 2004
  • November 2004
  • December 2004
  • January 2005
  • February 2005
  • March 2005
  • April 2005
  • May 2005
  • June 2005
  • July 2005
  • August 2005
  • September 2005
  • October 2005
  • November 2005
  • December 2005
  • January 2006
  • February 2006
  • March 2006
  • April 2006
  • May 2006
  • June 2006
  • July 2006
  • August 2006
  • September 2006
  • October 2006
  • November 2006
  • December 2006
  • January 2007
  • February 2007
  • March 2007
  • April 2007
  • May 2007
  • June 2007
  • July 2007
  • August 2007
  • September 2007
  • October 2007
  • November 2007
  • December 2007
  • January 2008
  • February 2008
  • March 2008
  • April 2008
  • May 2008
  • June 2008
  • July 2008
  • August 2008
  • September 2008
  • October 2008
  • November 2008
  • December 2008
  • January 2009
  • February 2009
  • March 2009
  • April 2009
  • May 2009
  • June 2009
  • July 2009
  • August 2009
  • September 2009
  • October 2009
  • November 2009
  • December 2009
  • December 2013
  • Creative Commons Licence