Indonesia Anonymus

We are a group of Indonesians, ranting about our beloved country. This blog is a result of many people grumbling about many things in many ways.
Feedback: indonesia.anonymus at gmail dot com


Anonymus is the Latin word for anonymous, the correct English spelling. The Latin spelling, however, is traditionally used by scholars in the humanities to refer to an ancient writer whose name is not known, or to a manuscript of their work. Read more at Wikipedia.

Our blog in Bahasa Indonesia (but rarely updated) can be found here.

Monday, August 17, 2009

At 64, a work in progress

More than a decade ago there was this thought in our mind, whenever we looked at our children:

What if, one day, in the future, our children looked at us and ask:

"Mom, Dad, What have you done? Why did you leave behind this poor, corrupt and undemocratic country? Why didn't you do something to change it? Now we have to fix everything..."

So now, looking back, we are relieved to know that we can say:

Guess what, kids. We did do something.
We have democracy now.

It's not perfect, of course.
But then again kids, try name one country that has a perfect democratic system. Can you think of one? Because we couldn't.

We're still poor, yes.
And yes. corruption is still a big problem [1].

We're still working on it. And that's what we will leave behind.

A work in progress.

So get ready to take over the work.
And please, take care of this young democracy.

Because getting this far wasn't easy.

[1] In 2008 Transparency International Corruption perception index, Indonesia is ranked 126 of 180. Below Honduras, Guyana, and Ethiopia. As a comparison, Thailand is 80, Malaysia is 47.
But to make us feel better, in 2007 Indonesia was ranked 143 of 179, so not all is bad.
Source: Transparency International - Corruption Perceptions Index 2007 , 2008.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Flog it, girl!

Aparrently in Sudan women get flogged for wearing trousers.

From the New York Times [1]:
"The 1991 indecency law was adopted by Sudan's Islamic regime which came to power after a coup led by President Omar Al Bashir in 1989. It follows a strict interpretation of Islamic law that imposes physical punishment on ''those who commit an indecent act that violates public morale; or who dress indecently.''

"Trousers are considered indecent under the law."

"Public order cases usually involve quick summary trials with sentences carried out shortly afterward, as was the case with the 10 of the 13 women arrested earlier this month. They were flogged and fined 250 Sudanese pounds, or about $120." [2]

So at lunch we mentioned this to our female colleagues, who are mostly muslim women, to get their opinion.

After the first reaction of "that's terrible!" and "oh, how could they!", we asked:

What would they say if

1. Indonesia adopted the Islamic law (which by the way were being pushed by certain political parties but proven unpopular [3])
2. by that making the act of wearing trousers punishable by flogging?*

All of them have similar answer:

"I don't need anybody telling me what I should or should not wear.
I wear what I want to wear.
They can go flog themselves."

Ah. Indonesian women. Who can resist?

* Note to sensitive reader: please bear in mind this is an 'if' question. A hypothetical one.