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JOKOWI - The Political Debate

JOKOWI - The Political Debate

The only thing scarier in the upcoming 2019 election right now than Joko Widodo are the millions of people supporting him. After all said and done, Jokowi is just one man. A dangerous, twisted, racist, misogynistic, demagogue, but one man nonetheless.

This man must be defeated. That is a given. The 2019 election is far less about electing a new president or even making long-overdue history by finally putting a non-Javanese in the Merdeka Palace. It is about keeping the palace out of the hands of a trigger-happy, law-and-order zealot whose foreign policy can be summed up in four words: Bring More Chinese Workers.

But beating Joko Widodo is not enough. He has to be crushed to the earth, and squashed like a bug that he is. We have to burn down his village, pillage his valley, shame his extremist cyber-army horde led by one Kartika Djoemadi and send his bigots, bumpkins and rednecks of a supporters into hiding so that he and his ugly, hate-spewing kind never rise again.

When Jokowi says he has your back, you better watch out. He leaves a trail of broken promises and wrecked lives wherever he goes. We can’t afford to let him continue to do the same thing to Indonesia. He became a challenge the nation must confront and overcome. The furniture tycoon is uniquely unqualified president, in experience and temperament. He kept mounting a campaign of snarl and sneer, not substance. To the extent he has views, they are wrong in their diagnosis of Indonesia’s problems and dangerous in their proposed solutions. Jokowi’s politics of denigration and division could strain the bonds that have held a diverse nation together.

Let start with experience. In her 70 years of independence, Indonesia always nominated anyone for president who did not have electoral experience. That experiment turned out pretty well – but Jokowi, to put it midly, is no Soeharto. Leading the campaign to liberate Indonesia from the Dutch required strategic and political skills in the first order, and Soeharto was shrewd, diligent, humble and thoughtful. In contrast, there is nothing on Jokowi’s resume to suggest he could function successfully in Merdeka Palace. He was staked in the family business by a well-to-do father and has pursued a career marked by some successes, some failures and repeated episodes of saving his own hide while harming people who trusted him.

The lack of experience might be overcome if Jokowi saw it as a handicap worth overcoming. But he displays no curiosity, read no books and appears to believe he needs no advice. In fact, what makes Jokowi so unusual is his combination of extreme neediness and unbridled arrogance. He is desperate for affirmation but contemptuous of other views. He also is contemptuous of fact. Throughout his presidency, he has unspooled one lie after another, and when confronted with contrary evidence, he simply repeats the lie. It is impossible to know whether he convinces himself of his own untruths or knows that he is wrong and does not care.

Given his ignorance, it is perhaps not surprising that Jokowi offers no coherence when it comes to policy. In years past, he supported self-sufficiency, affordable energy for the people and abolishment of foreign debts; as a president, he became a hard-line opponent of all three. Even in the course of his presidency, he has flip-flopped on numerous issues. Worse than the flip-flops is the absence of any substance in his agenda. What Jokowi does offer is a series of prejudices and gut feeling, most of them erroneous.

The Jokowi litany of victimization has resonated with many Indonesian whose economic prospects has stagnated. They deserve a serious champion and the challenges of inequality and slow wage growth deserve a serious responses. But Jokowi has nothing positive to offer, only scapegoats and dark conspiracy theories. Worse, he doesn’t seem to care about his limitations on executive powers. He has threatened and indeed destroyed those who criticize him like Golkar or PPP, to name a few. He has also constricted the independent press to do his bidding. He went after the police, judge and district attorney who’s investigating the corruption of his cronies exacerbating his contempt for the independence of the judiciary by insisting that they should not investigate any executive order made based on “discretion.” Jokowi has encouraged and celebrated violence at his presidency.

Jokowi thinks that he is the miracle product that will fix everything that is wrong in your home. He is also your father figure (put your little hand in his), who will be your preacher, teacher (everything you had in mind). He’ll be your dream, your wish, your fantasy, your hope, your love, everything that you need. Truly, madly, deeply, he loves you. But he actually is a dictator, mafia don, supervillains. Throughout of his career, Jokowi implicitly insist that his were the politics of moral decency and therefore those who opposed his politics were obviously of a lower moral order. Many people dislike Jokowi for being too moralistic, self-righteous and a corrupt tool for the establishment and someone who came off as a bit entitled and kind of full of himself. He is “Soekarno without the charisma.”
Diubah oleh moraiko
Beri apresiasi terhadap thread ini Gan!
That sarcasm tought
Gan Baka ? emoticon-Big Grin

I suppose you created a thread here once hating on Jokowi and is this you again ? If the flow of this thread is healthy discussion/debate, I'll allow. But, if it comes to hating and spreading it. It will be closed emoticon-shakehand

The one and only emoticon-Cool

Noted mod emoticon-Big Grin

Let the game begin emoticon-Angkat Beer
i have a wet dream

trolls trolls go away, come again another day, little baka wants to play emoticon-Big Grin


JOKOWI - The Political Debate

JOKOWI - The Political Debate
Let all know what jokowi does is right or not in 2019...

Just hating the leader separately like that would not change any significant thing... build it up... jokowi does his best till now...

All of us know, how he was chosen last moment 2014... he acclaimed had been under-controlled by some party... and jokowi never put down that claim and make him so famous with title "rich-man doll".... in close of pemilu 2014... there is some meeting.... every enterpreneur of overseas the richest man over country was appeared to join the meet.... all never knew what case have been discussed in room... but when one-president-candidat met some influential man, all surely know what happen there without any news had been reminded citizen or fu****g netizens

I really don't understand what you are trying to say 'mate emoticon-Embarrassment emoticon-Embarrassment emoticon-Embarrassment
silence dogood emoticon-Embarrassment emoticon-Embarrassment emoticon-Embarrassment
‘Indonesia’s Obama’ Is Actually Nothing of the Sort

Yenni Kwok @yennikwok

May 20, 2014
Indonesian Presidential Election Candidates Name Vice Presidents
Ed Wray—Getty Images Indonesian presidential candidate Joko Widodo waves to a crowd of supporters after officially naming Jusuf Kalla as his vice-presidential running mate in Jakarta on May 19, 2014
Indonesia's presidential candidate Joko Widodo has drawn comparisons to Obama, and he too has chosen a seasoned politician, Jusuf Kalla, as his running mate. But there are only very few similarities between the two youthful politicians

Joko Widodo, the front runner in the Indonesian presidential election, is often compared to U.S. President Barack Obama. At 52 years old, both are relatively young politicians whose can-do spirit has won legions of fans and energized voters in their own countries. And just as the American leader has been, Joko is also the target of a smear campaign.

Last weekend, to quell rumors that he’s not a Muslim and of Chinese descent, his party, the Indonesian Democratic Party–Struggle (PDI-P), posted on Facebook a photo of Joko’s marriage certificate, complete with details of his religion and his father’s name — mirroring the White House’s release of Obama’s long-form birth certificate after persistent rumors that he was born in Kenya and not a U.S. citizen.

But that’s pretty much where the similarities end.

Joko, popularly known as Jokowi, announced his running mate on Monday, a day before the May 20 registration deadline, ending weeks of speculation. The choice: Jusuf Kalla, a seasoned politician and onetime chairman of the influential Golkar Party. Kalla, 72, is expected to help Jokowi and complement the Jakarta governor’s lack of experience in the rough-and-tumble of national politics — to be the Indonesian Joe Biden, if you will.

But the announcement has left some, if not many, of Jokowi’s supporters more disappointed than surprised. For one, Kalla is no Biden. When he served as Vice President during outgoing President Yudhoyono’s first term in office, from 2004 to 2009, there were signs, allegedly, of rivalry between the two. In an ongoing trial — concerning the funneling of funds during the 2008 global financial crisis to Indonesia’s Century Bank as part of a bailout package — Kalla gave testimony against actions taken by the Yudhoyono government. And the former veep’s appearance in the award-winning documentary The Act of Killing, in which he was seen praising a thuggish paramilitary group, whose members killed suspected communists in the 1960s, has done nothing to further his image.

Also, while Obama had a free hand to pick his VP candidate, Kalla is said to not be the choice of Jokowi but rather of his party’s chairwoman, Megawati Sukarnoputri. The presidential candidate hinted as much during his speech Monday: “Based on special considerations, considerations from Megawati Sukarnoputri, last night we decided that my vice-presidential candidate would be Muhammad Jusuf Kalla.” (Megawati had already put Jokowi in his place in a speech the previous Friday: “I made you [Jokowi] a presidential candidate,” she said. “But you should remember that you are the party’s official, with a function of implementing the party’s programs and ideology.”)

Sixteen years after the fall of authoritarian President Suharto on May 21, 1998, Indonesia has seen the rise of young leaders who earn public respect for pushing clean and effective governance in a country blighted by graft. Besides Jokowi, whose habit of making blusukan (impromptu visits) has endeared him to voters since his time as the mayor of the small central Javanese city of Solo, there are: Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, Jakarta’s deputy governor; Tri Rismaharini, the mayor of Indonesia’s second largest city, Surabaya; Ridwan Kamil, the mayor of the West Javanese capital and the country’s third most populous city, Bandung; and Ganjar Pranowo, the governor of Central Java province.

Yet this new breed of politicians is still at the mercy of party oligarchs, some of whom are remnants from the Suharto era. Party leaders and founders like Megawati treat their organizations like personal fiefdoms, having the final say on the selection of everyone from presidential candidates to deputies of regional leaders. Sometimes the pairings work (Jokowi and Basuki, who belongs to the Gerindra Party, have formed a good team as leaders of Indonesia’s capital city). At other times, it’s a disaster: Rismaharini contemplated stepping down in February, partly because she was allegedly fed up with the inability to work with her PDI-P–appointed new deputy mayor.

For the July 9 election, Jokowi is facing rival Prabowo Subianto, a Gerindra Party co-founder. Prabowo, former son-in-law of the late Suharto and an ex-general with a dubious human-rights record, has chosen to team up with Hatta Rajasa, whose daughter is married to Yudhoyono’s son. Though Jokowi, a clean nonestablishment figure, is the front runner, Prabowo has gained ground in a new opinion poll.

“A fight against the oligarchs,” tweeted anticorruption activist Teten Masduki, who supports Jokowi, on Sunday, a day before the Kalla announcement. But as election day approaches, and coalition parties begin jockeying for advantage, the presidential race may turn into a fight among party oligarchs, not against them.
The master in copy-pasting some else's writing to look smart, good dog emoticon-Big Grin

I have no idea what you are ranting and raving about....your awful grammars make you a terrible writers emoticon-Busa: emoticon-Busa:
Diubah oleh moraiko

I don't get it...

This time last year, Joko Widodo's supporters took to the streets to celebrate his victory in Indonesia's presidential election. He was hailed as the people's president, his win in the polls seen to signal a new chapter for Indonesian democracy.

The former furniture salesman and small-town mayor, who insisted on being called by his nickname, "Jokowi", represented a break from the stronghold of elite and military circles over the nation's highest position of power.

One year on, and the president has developed a very different reputation, both at home in Indonesia and internationally. Social media users in the world's most active Twitter-using country have in recent weeks adopted the trending hashtag #SudahlahJokowi (Enough already, Jokowi) to express their disillusionment.

Relations with Australia have hit a new low, with an ambassador being recalled from Indonesia for the first time. Meanwhile, the Australian public's feelings toward Indonesia have cooled to the lowest point in eight years, according to the latest Lowy Institute Poll.

Jokowi's honeymoon period is well and truly over. As he was officially inaugurated in October last year, the president is now only nine months in to a five-year term. He may have outstripped elite and military figures during election season, but Jokowi is now struggling to take control of the presidency without the full support of his party and coalition. His attempts to regain the people's support, such as by showing decisiveness on pursuing the death penalty for drug smugglers, have cost the president credibility among human rights supporters and international observers.

So what has gone wrong for Jokowi since this time last year? And what will it mean for the future of Indonesia, and for Australia-Indonesia relations?

Domestically, Jokowi's biggest challenge is getting out from under the thumb of Megawati Sukarnoputri, his party leader. The Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), founded by Megawati, is the political machine that picked out Jokowi as the popular mayor of his hometown in Central Java and supported his rise to become governor of the capital – and then president of the country.

At a party congress in Bali in April, Megawati gave a speech that indirectly reminded Jokowi of his origins, and advised that he toe the party line. Jokowi himself was not invited to speak at the congress.

The Indonesian public is well aware of this dynamic. As the incoming president, Jokowi made a show of filling his cabinet based on the new ministers' credentials, rather than their political affiliations – though a few appointments were still criticised as being politically motivated, including the appointment of Megawati's daughter Puan Maharani as minister for human resource development and cultural affairs.

Meanwhile, when it came to nominating a new national police chief in January, Jokowi chose Budi Gunawan​, a close friend of Megawati. The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) advised against the appointment due to outstanding graft allegations while the parliament, and the president's party, backed it. Jokowi was caught between toeing the party line and siding with the KPK, backed by the volunteer support base that carried his presidential campaign.

Instead, Jokowi took a back seat as the drama unfolded. The police retaliated against the KPK by levelling charges against its top investigators. The country's most trusted anti-corruption body looked on the brink of collapse. The military moved to secure the KPK, reigniting tension between the police and the armed forces. Finally, Jokowi dropped Gunawan's nomination for police chief – only to see him quietly inaugurated as deputy police chief in April.

By the end of January, a poll by the Indonesia Survey Circle (LSI) showed that 54 per cent of respondents were dissatisfied with Jokowi's performance as president. A poll by Puspol Indonesia in February showed dissatisfaction as low as 74.6 per cent.

No direct link can be made between Jokowi's weakening position and his decision to go ahead with the execution of death-row drug smugglers in January and in April. The president had already signed the execution papers last December, when he was still enjoying relatively high popularity ratings. However, the timing of the executions does suggest a political motivation to show his strength and decisiveness as a leader, and to recover public support.

Haris Azhar​, co-ordinator of the non-governmental Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS), says that anti-death penalty activists in Indonesia are fighting an uphill battle. H

"For me, it's very clear that he [Jokowi] does not care and does not understand human rights," he saids via email in February.

Capital punishment has strong mainstream support in Indonesia. IThe decision by former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono​ to grant clemency to Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby was highly unpopular. By enforcing the death penalty for drug smugglers, and particularly for foreign drug smugglers, it is likely that Jokowi sought to distinguish himself from his predecessor and show his commitment to firm and fair law enforcement.

Unfortunately for Jokowi, this attempt to appeal for public support lost him a great deal of international support. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed regret over the executions, and urged a return to the moratorium introduced by Yudhoyono. Brazil and the Netherlands both withdrew ambassadors following the first round of executions in January. France and the Philippines objected to their citizens' scheduled executions in April, which did not eventuate due to ongoing investigations and appeals. In response to the executions of Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in April, Australia for the first time withdrew its ambassador from Jakarta, the country's biggest overseas diplomatic post.

These developments signal a very different Australia-Indonesia relationship under Jokowi to the one experienced for 10 years under Yudhoyono. While all sides of Australian politics agree on the importance of a strong relationship with Indonesia, and in fact argue over which side is doing a better job of maintaining the relationship, the same cannot be said of the various factions in Indonesian politics. Despite some rocky moments with Australia during his term, Yudhoyono was an outward-looking statesman with a sincere interest in developing stronger ties with Australia. By contrast, Jokowi is inward-looking and reluctant to participate in international affairs.

"Jokowi is not particularly interested in Australia," says Ken Ward, a former government Indonesia analyst, who is due to launch a book this month on the Australia-Indonesia relationship. "He's not hostile towards Australia, but he does appear indifferent."

In a telephone interview, Ward pointed out that in public speeches Jokowi tended to mention an ambition for Indonesia to be seen as a world power on par with China and the United States. A role for Australia as a powerful regional neighbour did not feature in this worldview, Ward said.

On Australia's part, a hardline approach to asylum seekers and frequent diplomatic gaffes have harmed the stated goal of a stronger relationship with Indonesia. Lasting damage was done by Prime Minister Tony Abbott's comments linking Australia's contribution to the 2004 Aceh tsunami recovery efforts and the government's request for clemency for Chan and Sukumaran. The implication of a diplomatic debt seen as equating the lives of 130,000 Acehnese and two Australians sparked public outrage and a viral campaign in Indonesia to return the debt in the form of "Coins for Australia".

Australia's refusal to resettle Rohingya refugees has also had a poor reception in Indonesia, as the country that took the lead in south-east Asia for handling the boat crisis in May. An aggressive border protection policy by Australia continues to rankle Indonesia, particularly in relation to border incursions into Indonesian waters and allegations of bribery by Australian authorities for people-smugglers to return to Indonesia.

It's early stages yet for Jokowi to forge stronger ties with Australia and fulfill domestic expectations of strengthening Indonesia's democratic institutions and improving the country's human rights record. However, the president's performance in the first year since he was elected shows that the bulk of this work still lies ahead.

Catriona Croft-Cusworth is a Jakarta-based correspondent for the Lowy Interpreter (
Since its passing in late June, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s signature policy, the overly hyped tax amnesty program is projected to be a letdown.

And a recent string of remarks by newly appointed Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati seems to suggest the nail is already in the coffin for the policy despite her efforts to convince the public that the policy’s future remains rosy.

As though signaling she was not convinced that the proceeds target from penalties under the amnesty could be attained to help plug the state budget deficit, she drastically cut government spending less than a week into her job over concern about the ballooning deficit stemming from the program missing its mark.

In a hearing with lawmakers last week, the iron lady said tax reform should come before tax amnesty. “But this hasn’t happened. Hence, we’re accelerating tax reforms as quickly as possible while upholding the morale of tax officials. But at the same time, they have a very specific target.”

Her statement came after the latest data showed that only 1.3 percent of the Rp 165 trillion (US$12.37 billion) amnesty proceeds target had been pocketed, and only 2 percent of the targeted Rp 4 quadrillion in unreported assets had been declared. Of the Rp 1 quadrillion target of repatriated funds, only 0.76 percent had been realized.

With the program lasting for another seven months and the policy plagued with so many problems, confidence seems to be declining for the government to again be given the benefit of the doubt.

So what is the source of the problem? To start with, doubt lingers over the validity of the claim that the unreported assets are worth Rp 4 quadrillion, with around Rp 1 quadrillion stashed overseas.

Is it really that much? If so, is there really a demand for the amnesty? How big actually is the demand? No recent study has been commissioned to verify the claim.

Politicians have indicated the number is based on a 2002 underlying figure when state-run Bank Mandiri commissioned McKinsey & Company to calculate Indonesian assets parked overseas. The figure was then cooked and updated by several government ministries and abracadabra, came the 4 quadrillion amount.

Jokowi even claims to have a list of Indonesian conglomerates with whopping undeclared assets and could easily call them to have their assets declared and repatriated, or risk the consequences.

Taxation director general Ken Dwijugiasteadi backed the claim, saying he also kept the list. But he retracted his statement last week, saying it was his former boss, Bambang Brodjonegoro, who claimed to have it.

But despite the list, they may not be aware of the many conglomerates having their overseas assets already stashed into trustee instruments, whose confidentiality cannot be kracked under the automatic exchange of information treaty, which Indonesia will implement in 2018.

The government’s argument that recalcitrant taxpayers will no longer find safe havens to hide their wealth is just ludicrous. Why bother joining if their assets are already comfortably and safely stashed?

After the sketchy figure then comes the legal problems. Deliberated in less than four months, Tax Amnesty Law No. 11/2016 was among the fastest pieces of legislation to be passed by the House of Representatives. But that comes with a consequence: it leaves many devils in the details.

Among them is Article 8 point 3(b). The article basically prohibits taxpayers from participating in the program unless they settle all their unpaid taxes.

Legal experts insist this article has partly killed the amnesty itself because taxpayers may not have sufficient financial capacity to pay all their tax dues at once in order to get the amnesty.

Another concern is the risk of taxpayer data being compromised and used for future prosecutions. Five law enforcement institutions, aside from the tax office and the Finance Ministry, will have access to the data as mandated by their governing laws despite the supposed firewall of secrecy stipulated in the law.

Another drawback hampering the amnesty is obviously the unresolved structural problem at the Finance Ministry’s directorate general of taxation, which is responsible for carrying out the program.

The tax office has endured a pervasive lack of manpower that has already held back its efforts to collect further tax revenue.

One tax official serves 7,500 taxpayers, far higher than in Australia and Germany, where one official serves 1,000 and 700 taxpayers, respectively, and that is with more advanced IT systems.

As a result of the shortages, the agency could not expand the collection base outside the 30,000 companies that have long contributed to around 80 percent of total tax revenues. Thus, for the tax officials it has always been hunting in the zoo.

With the amnesty, the tax officials now have to juggle between meeting the amnesty targets and ensuring this year’s tax collection will not miss the mark, increasing their workload by between 30 and 50 percent.

Even if the tax agency can well serve the amnesty participants, there is concern on how the repatriated funds can be absorbed by the country’s notoriously underdeveloped financial system. Huge inflows of funds into the banking system, for example, could create costs for the banks if the funds are not immediately channeled to productive instruments.

It was not until a month after the amnesty law was passed that the government rushed to prepare an array of investment instruments, indicating a gross ignorance in the way it prepared the program.

Now, why should we care about all this mess? Because the tax amnesty seems to be another blatant example of how policymaking under this administration is recklessly conceived and implemented. If the President’s very own signature policy is churned out in haste with all the drawbacks, what then are the prospects for the credibility of other policies?

When the going gets tough, several officials may provide justifications for the amnesty’s eventual failure as just obvious, as other countries implementing similar programs have a success rate of below 60 percent.

Two wrongs don’t make a right.

Why else should we care? Because it will be just outrageous if there is a sinister motive at play, in which the amnesty may have actually been intended for accommodating the interests of “a few”.
Joko Widodo: like Obama, you sailed into office on a tidal wave of expectations. In a country of 250 million people, you’re so loved that even when you were still serving as governor of Jakarta, everyone called you by your nickname, Jokowi.

Unlike your predecessors, or your opponent Prabowo Subianto, you did not come from a prominent family, much less the political elite. Your mandate is as the president for the orang kecil, the ordinary people – a rare and powerful bidding.

When less than a week before election day in July 2014 you stood before tens of thousands of adoring supporters at an open air concert in Jakarta’s main stadium, you told them never to surrender to intimidation, lies and fraud.

You believed fervently in what you said; it was all over your face, your gestures. You looked like a man who could stand up to anything and anyone. Fears that you would succumb to the wishes of former president Megawati Sukarnoputri – leader of your party, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) – were marvellously allayed. You were as genuine as it came and your voters saw it.

Among the nation’s top priorities, you declared, was the battle against corruption and cronyism. Anti-graft was to be the new government’s mantra. And because you were addressing the largest crowd you’d ever seen, you added solemnly that your ticket was to “fight to preserve human rights” and to “fight against injustice”.

Your opponent – a former military general with a checkered human rights record – could never say these words with such conviction. The concert proved to be the divine intervention you needed, and it turned the tide in your favour. You clinched the presidency.

Fears that you would succumb to the wishes of former president Megawati Sukarnoputri were marvellously allayed.

Only six months later, the fresh face of Indonesian democracy has become the face of incompetence and heartlessness. Your popularity is sliding. You are baffled. Every time you appear on television, there is a flurry of tweets about your fumbling ineloquence or your awkward body language.

The same people who voted for you also seem to have made a new sport out of discussing the little things that have somehow come to define you: every cringe-inducing non-statement you make, your fish out of water expression, your sheer unease in your new public role.

You sometimes find it difficult to understand why the qualities your voters used to find charming during the election campaign – your modesty, your quietness, your penchant for shunning protocol – no longer cut it for them. What they now see, instead, is a man painfully unsuited to his job.

You’re like an actor so embarrassingly miscast, a former fan said, that he often wished, for your sake and his, you could just jump out of the movie and return to what you’re really good at: managing the giant mess that is the city of Jakarta.

But you wanted to appear strong, so you grabbed for a subject that already comes equipped with its own fan base. Eight-six percent of respondents in a survey conducted by Kompas, Indonesia’s leading daily, agreed to the death penalty for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, the two Australian nationals who were among the eight men executed last week.

Still, 57.8% were willing to cut off diplomatic relations with any country, such as Australia, that challenges Indonesia’s sovereignty. Nationalism is a cliched, if childish, response when it comes to bilateral spats. Even you understand that. Yet surely it speaks a larger truth, doesn’t it? That what you are doing is right by your country – that what you are doing is to protect the greater good.

You believe that the stance you’re taking is the appropriate (if not the only) way to protect Indonesians from the scourge of drug abuse. You believe that only by a form of shock therapy – a measure once favoured by former long-serving autocrat Suharto, who ordered the street-style execution of criminals in the 80s –could you truly krack down on drug traffickers.

At heart you’re a conservative family man, and that the battle against drugs is a moral crusade, not merely a health issue. So to show mercy is to show weakness. You’re sure that on this score, Megawati is on the same page with you.

So, despite the clamour of activists, the staggering condemnation you’ve received from the international community, the reams of ethical and legal arguments against capital punishment that have been thrown at you, you stuck to your guns.

Of course you could resort to your current fall-back line: “How can I be expected to read everything?” Or even go so far as to say that the real boss of the country, Megawati, had indeed countenanced the death penalty, and you are merely acting on her behest.

Hell, you’ve done this before – you nominated graft suspect Budi Gunawan, a former adjutant of Megawati, for the role of police chief. Then you refused to withdraw his nomination, even after the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), perceived by many as the country’s last bastion of justice, announced he was under investigation for taking bribes. In the end, you only relented to keep order.

And in a recent stunning gaffe, you even allowed yourself the indignity of being brushed off by the National Police when they ignored your order not to arrest Novel Baswedan, a top KPK investigator who had been an anti-corruption icon long before you promised your people a war on graft.

If you could withstand weeks, months of public outrage and ridicule because you couldn’t stand up to Megawati on corruption, a subject that the average Indonesian is deeply and fiercely opposed to, surely the death penalty, which the majority of Indonesians support, should be the equivalent of a walk in the park.

‘So, despite the clamour of activists, the staggering condemnation you’ve received you stuck to your guns.’

‘So, despite the clamour of activists and the staggering condemnation you’ve received, you stuck to your guns.’ Photograph: Fairfax Media via Getty Images
Now another eight people have been executed on your watch, in addition to the six who were already killed. Eight humans who refused to be blindfolded, shot dead at close range by a government firing squad, on the island of Nusa Kambangan.

The irony is not lost on some people. You may only be vaguely aware that it is the very island from which the draconian Suharto government, 46 years ago, sent some 12,000 alleged Communists to another island in the Moluccas, Buru Island. Buru was a different kind of purgatory, true – a harsh, punishing, dehumanizing place, but one that had also afforded some of the prisoners, miraculously, some semblance of catharsis and a new beginning.

Nusa Kambangan is often the end, a place where violent death is wholly sanctioned by the state, and it is this, some people suggest, that you have memorialised by executing these prisoners – not justice for those who had perished from drug abuse nor protection and security.

You listen to the news, read the occasional tweet. Social media peaks to a frenzy; the world, it seems, is in a frenzy. And suddenly your name is being painted in blood. You have been accused of playing God. You have been called a murderer, a heartless man no different than the strongmen of yesteryear, who had resorted to violence to suppress dissent of all stripes.

Next to your portrait on the cover of Time magazine was the headline “A New Hope”. Now it seems you are really “A New Hopelessness.”

The last-minute, temporary reprieve you granted Mary Jane Veloso did not stop the critics: they say the theatrics of having brought her to within minutes of the firing range was a cruel thing to do. Not to mention that you were only delaying the inevitable, which is doubly cruel.

People from all around the world are genuinely angry; one of them, an Australian, says that along with the lives lost on your watch you have lost a chance to show, with grace and humanity, that politics could change for the better.

Meanwhile, overheard in Jakarta: it’s possible that this is the only story on Indonesia the world will ever tell for a while. We have been robbed of the chance to show what is good, beautiful and generous about us. But ah, you think – maybe that’s the price to pay for leading a country this impossibly big. You can’t please them all.

Perhaps you will begin to realise that, while it’s true no leader can please everyone (nor should they try), their core values matter. And these core values influence, or are at least reflected in, their public policies.

When will it dawn on you that many voters chose you because of your perceived humanity, your unblemished human rights record? They believed that to be a good leader, you must first and foremost be a just and compassionate person who will not think twice on abolishing the death penalty.

And when we talk of humanity, we talk of a common humanity, of which we are all members. The lives of Brazilian Rodrigo Gularte and Nigerian Okwuduli Oyatanze matter as much as the lives of the others, the two Australians or Indonesian Zainal Abidin.

Nowadays, our individual lives spread so far beyond the confines of home towns, cities, countries, that it is impossible not to care about international opinion. To think that you can survive without it is not only misguided but dangerously behind the times.

It has often been argued that Indonesia has too many competing causes and grievances, be they rooted in the past or relatively recent – and all are grave, all urgent. There are still so many legacies of violence and authoritarianism for us to come to terms with, born of a history where so many individual lives were lost in grand narratives not of their own making.

You need not be reminded that there are two things at risk here: that generations born after the Suharto era are not even aware of Indonesia’s violent history, including notorious instances of state-sponsored violence. And that said generations may very well learn their first example of state-sponsored justice in your grand display of the most inhuman form of retribution.

Nobody ever says leading is easy. But in order to be a true “new hope” might it be that instead of grandstanding on issues that will only alienate your country from the rest of the world, you should put your effort into finding the most benevolent way out of any conundrum?

Hasn’t the Mahabharata taught us anything about the value of solicitude and diplomacy? How many times did Odysseus in the Iliad try to tell Achilles and Agamemnon, brutes both, that much more is to be gained when cooler heads prevail? Has the past year alone not seen enough blood spilled in the world’s streets? So much that what we might need are consistent lessons in kindness and peace, and, indeed, a calmer history?

The world needs this strength from us, too. As a country with the largest Muslim population in the world, we should show that there is a country where the majority of Muslims are, for the most part, open, tolerant and peace-loving.

Otherwise, with forces at home already turning you into an object of blatant disrespect, with the international community and civil society losing respect for you so early in your presidency, with your failure to date so far on almost all the areas you promised to improve – law enforcement, justice, political strategy, foreign policy, and most of all, humanity – the death orders you gave last week are beginning to sound like your own political death knell.

So the next time you go blusukan (pay impromptu visits), it may be instructive to visit one of our prisons. Perhaps you can feel firsthand the fear and trembling, the sorrow, the dread and all the ugly unspoken things, and join others in observing a moment of silence for those whose lives you took last week. For only silence fits what has been lost, and what could have been.
2019? that's too long! lets topple him now!emoticon-Sundul Up

i dont get it dude. whata goin on with you ??
start the revolution!emoticon-Shutup

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