Live Blog: Indonesia’s Presidential Election 2014 (Hint: #jokowins)

Hi World,

As you all know, today is the D-day. Or E-day to be exact. Election Day! Everyone seems restless as to who is going to win: Jokowi or Prabowo. After the whole debates and campaign to win voters’ hearts, now it is the time to get to know the reality.

6.00 am

And here I am, live blogging for you. I won’t tell you what you can find in serious journalism sites out there so I will share what I feel and experience as a citizen and voter who is lucky enough to be eligible to cast my ballot. Some friends of mine are not. Somehow anyhow some glitches in the central database of voters happened, causing their names and data undiscovered. Even if they are found, the validity is questionable. For example, a pal said his name is found but his unique residential number is different. Either it is the fault of someone in the committe or whatever, we have no clear idea.


6.17 am

This is the first time I witness so much enthusiasm amongst the youngsters and the erudite who adopt progressive, optimistic mindset towards politics and the future of the nation. And I am quite stunned when I found several world-calibre artists like Sting and Jason Mraz were urged to have something to say about this presidential election. They endorse Jokowi (Joko Widodo – actively tweeting on @jokowi_do2), a cleaner civilian candidate when it comes to track records involving human rights and pro-grass roots policies and down-to-earth approach. As opposed to him, the other candidate is Prabowo Subianto, someone with some “scars” in the past, I can say. He is the old-minded chap with no social media interest before, until he acknowledged the power of social media right before and poof! He has got a Twitter account and a Facebook fan page. He tweets on @prabowo08. Some of his past deeds and track records are said to be “bloody”. He was the part of Suharto’s regime and Indonesians are now torn apart whether they have to choose Jokowi, the future with uncertainty and stability, or Prabowo, the past with certainty and stability. As we know, Jokowi is a civilian and pluralism endorser by nature. In military and defense aspect, he has nothing to brag about. At all. 20140709-063252-23572884.jpg

I wonder why Facebook cares so much about our election. Is Indonesia that influential in the world? I guess so. 20140709-064205-24125051.jpg

Even our yogi cum singer Sting showcased the hashtag of Jokowi. 20140709-064205-24125312.jpg

Excluding Ahmad Dhani and several singers featured on his Nazi-flavored endorsement video clip (intended to show political and moral support for Prabowo Subianto), nearly all creative people, artists, celebrities support Joko Widodo, who is also known for his being a rock music avid listener. He even got his guitar from Metallica.


7.13 am I just heard the committee of the nearby TPS (tempat pemungutan suara – a place arranged to be where voters can come and cast their ballots) taking vows. “… We pledge to be working honestly..,”a man’s voice read the vows printed on a sheet of paper,”regardless of our personal or group interests.” I too got involved in the committe like this at a nearby TPS in my hometown (I now live in Jakarta) in 2004. I recall that time, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono won over Megawati, Amin Rais, if I am not mistaken. google election

9.30 am Along with some friends in the boarding house, I am going to the nearby TPS. It is TPS 20, fewer than 100 meters from my bedroom. Awesomely close, I tell you. Yet, we are not allowed to vote because according to the rules, non-residents like us (we are domestic ‘immigrants’ in fact, coming from provinces other than Jakarta Special Territory in the country) may vote after 12 pm, when all the residents have cast their ballots. So hopefully, we still have quite many ballots left.


10.32 am So I have much spare time right now to spend. And blogging and getting online is just the best way to spend time. By the way, I should tell you that these recent days I heard some helicopters flying here and there at night. And just yesterday, when I was at work typing, suddenly the noise of an aircraft was heard approaching my office which is located on 39th floor of DBS Bank Tower, South Jakarta. And that was in the daylight. A coworker jokingly commented,”SBY is showing off his forces to let people know he is still the man in charge.” But SBY cannot be biased. The reason why it is so is that he is the father in-law of Hatta Rajasa’s daughter. Hatta runs as the candidate of vice president with Prabowo Subianto. Aliya Rajasa is married to the second son of SBY, Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono. They, therefore, are connected to each other. And we cannot be surprised when SBY accepted Prabowo in Istana Merdeka, Jakarta. This is deemed as an unethical act because as a president, he ought to show neutrality. It won’t hurt if he met Prabowo at his own residence but at the presidential palace? Shame on him.


10.50 am

Academicians like Anis Baswedan (who previously was also a presidential candidate but failed along the way and decided to work as an endorser of Jokowi) tend to vote for Jokowi. Another moslem academician voting for Jokowi is Komarudin Hidayat,  a rector of UIN Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta since 2006. These people are the representation of moderate moslem groups, contrary to the hard-liners who promise to support Jokowi whole-heartedly such as Front Pembela Islam which is known for their agressive, savage and brutal approach while claiming that it is done for the sake of Islam. Too bad not all Indonesian moslems are in favor of FPI’s intolerant attitude, which proves to be toxic in the diverse Indonesia people.


11.08 am

Jokowi is lucky to have an ideal family. He has a wife, a son and a daughter. Happy and harmonious. In the family aspect, Prabowo is not as lucky. He is a widower, having only a son. And the son is said to be gay.

12.00 pm
I cannot believe they tell us they run out of ballots! One of the committee says we have to get to one of the nearby TPSs to vote. That said, the holders of A5 form, me included, should find one TPS with unused ballots left. It didn’t make sense as it is said that every TPS has 12 extra ballots aside from 600 ballots for the permanent residents.

But we definitely will not go down without a fight. This election draws more attention from Indonesians than any previous elections ever. I can see from the overflowing enthusiasm of voters. They want to vote no matter what.

Here some people are confused as to which mass media they have to trust because every news outlet seems to have its own version of quick count. Some others simply ignore what is said by the news anchors of major national TV stations and news sites owned by political figures. TV One is owned by Abu Rizal Bakrie — investor of Path and supporter of Prabowo — and thus it is no wonder they keep telling Prabowo is leading. Metro TV on the other hand is owned by Surya Paloh, a staunch supporter of Jokowi, so they show the public that Jokowi is getting closer to victory.

But anyway we made it! We did vote!
May the best man win!!!


15.09 pm
In this hot humid afternoon, what is better than taking a nap to save energy while fasting is watching the committee tallying the ballots! As he opens up each ballot taken from te ballot box, we gasp and wait,”Jokowi!!!” It goes on and on and interrupted a while by,”Prabowo!!!”

The final result we have got here in TPS 20, Karet Kuningan, Jakarta Selatan is:

H. Prabowo Subianto- Ir. H. M. Hatta Rajasa ===>>> 148 ballots

Ir. H. Joko Widodo – Drs. H.M. Jusuf Kalla ===>> 238 ballots

Invalid ballots ====>>> 5 ballots



Does SBY Tweet by Himself?

There’s no doubt someone is tweeting himself if he is a teenager or someone with less tech-challenged nature and looks, and a lot of spare time.  But what if that’s the President of Indonesia? I don’t know what to say but it is very much out of character to him. If you happen to  be  really fond of tweeting , find Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono  on this URL : According to Daniel Sparringa on this official web page :, the Twitter account is for public communication purposes. Could it be Sparringa tweeting for SBY? Needless to say…

So what makes me wonder is: Why now? Isn’t it now much too late to get actively involved on social media? Even if that’s for political reason, this is so left behind. Many politicians have begun this long before 2013.

I’m not this keen on political discussion approaching 2014 general elections. There’s barely anything I like about Indonesian politics and in particular, politicians.

In Protest against Lame Food Policy, Agricultural Department Site Got Hacked

Packs of tempeh, fermented soybean bars that is considered the next staple food after rice. (Credit :

There are too many ironies in this country. Indonesia is a country well known for its abundant natural resources and dubbed as “Ring of Fire”, where two lines of volcanoes meet with each other. Merapi, Krakatau are a few that I guess the most widely known by modern, historic humanity. And in the past, we had Tambora. With a lot of volcanoes here, the soil fertility is naturally undoubtable. You can grow literally almost any plants on Indonesia’s earth.


But the reality is quite different. We Indonesians are importing too many commodities, including foods that we can grow on our own. Some can’t get the point why the government doesn’t react on the twisted, logically faulty policies in food defense. And combined with proper computer science, they took a bold, somehow illegal and reckless action: hacking the agricultural department official site.


A local online site (Surya Online) published a ridiculously titled article: “Situs Deptan Dihack Pecinta Tempe” (Agricultural Dept Site Hacked by Tempeh Lovers). Now I know that one cannot look down on these tempeh lovers with “tempeh mentality” ( tempeh is unjustly associated with weak spirit, low enthusiasm or passion here). Sure if they managed to hack a govt site, that simply showed how shrewd they’ve become, mostly because of tempeh regular consumption.


The hacking itself happened with good, even noble, reason. If you’re not aware of what has been a custom in Indonesia market, I tell you that every Ramadhan, Idul Fitri and Christmas, the prices (especially the basic necessities) are always soaring high. Market operation, which is frequently used as the last resort, clearly doesn’t solve any issues.


And as I heard from my landlady tonight, she just bought a certain pack of tempeh from her favorite seller. “So it’s true those tempeh and tahu (tofu) sellers are on strike??” I asked her while she was ironing clothes. “Yes, it’s been 2 days without tempeh and tahu, and I’m kinda missing them,” Erna, my landlady, replied. She detailed later, the tempeh and tahu sellers were on strike, they simply left their stalls at Mencos (it’s a local low class traditional market located near where she and I live now) occupied by other sellers. And tonight the tempeh and tahu seller came over, selling the same pack of tempeh IDR 6000. Two days ago before the strike, it was usually sold IDR 5000. “Let’s look at the bright side, to say the least. We only have to pay one more thousand rupiahs. Everyone I think still can afford to get themselves one piece of tempeh on the plate.” While I was saying that, I was praying there’d be more money those marginalized folks can make on daily basis. It’s saddening to be perfectly honest to say such a thing. I knew it was not ok for the families with very low income, but really how can I do about this? 😦
And as you can read below (this is the screenshot of the homepage of the hacked site), the hacker wrote some annoying sentences in purpose. This is what the hacker stated:

SILENCE!! Cuk (*slang Javanese word widely used by speakers around East Java)

Sir, this country has a lot of agricultural experts. Erudite scholars and professors at universities and IPB (=Bogor Agricultural and Farming Institute) are many. The president (= Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono) himself is a graduate of IPB, better we don’t rely too much on import. (*We) can’t figure out the reason why we have to import soybean, cassava, fruits, rice, and salt (*Indonesia has too long coastal lines and too much sea water to waste just like that). Don’t we just change the name of this department into “Importing Ministry of Indonesian Republic“. Is it now the time to get your money back?  (*This is very much relevant to the prevalent political system that resembles trading and commerce, and dirty intrigues in the authority circle)
Sucks to be grassroots, the last time chilli price hiked, we didn’t mind. Every commodity price is being raised, and still we’re OK. We only have tempeh and tahu left , and what now? It does suck.. what to eat then?


But the root of the problem, as I figure it out, doesn’t only lie in the government side. People in this country need also to learn they’re contributing as well to this calamity. Just don’t let this happen by picking that more pricey domestic fruit that tastes so-so over imported, cheaper fruit that makes you want more and more. Or start sending our sons and daughters to agricultural and farming schools

Kebun Raya Bogor dan 2 Orang Jerman

Dari KRB ketemu dua orang pemuda Jerman yg belajar Marine biology. Namanya ga tau. Mereka seolah ga mau kasih tau. Well, it’s ok.

 Pertama karena aku diusir dari gerbong wanita aku pun pindah gerbong. Dan sekilas kulihat ada wajah kaukasia. Yup. Aku duduk di sebelah mereka.

Seorang pria setengah baya di depan mereka mengajak berbicara dalam bahasa inggris. Ternyata dia lulusan IPB jadi tidak heran ia lumayan lancar.

Di tengah pembicaraan, lulusan IPB itu menanyakan tempat mereka menginap dan keduanya menjawab “bandara”. Pria IPB itu berseloroh,”You both are bule gila”. Whatta? Aku cukup terkejut tapi aku pahami maksudnya yang menginginkan mereka agar lebih berhati-hati di tanah asing. Keduanya tak menggubris dan berargumen bahaya ada di mana-mana. Di Jerman

Mereka berbicara panjang lebar sementara aku membaca Eat Pray Love. Sebenarnya aku juga kurang konsen karena gatal dg percakapan mereka  yang lumayan asik. Tapi rasanya sungkan untuk nimbrung hingga satu saat mereka mengatakan ingin menuju mall ambassador. Aku pun bertanya untuk memastikan, ternyata memang tidak salah dengar. Akhirnya aku bilang mereka harus turun tebet dan mereka bilang akan mengikutiku saja.

Setelah beberapa saat diam, aku pun beranikan bertanya apakah mereka kali pertama ini mengunjungi bali dan tanah air.

Mungkin karena hari sudah gelap dan kecapaian, kami tak tahu Tebet sudah lewat. Saat aku katakan kami sudah melewati Tebet, si Jerman bertopi malah bertanya, “Tebet? Is it T E B E T?” Oh, kenapa dia tidak bilang! Damn… dulu aku juga tidak tahu sudah sampai Tebet hingga akhirnya turun Gondangdia dan berjalan kaki! Kampret…sekarang kejadian lagi.

 Akhirnya kami turun di Gambir. Sebenarnya aku malu karena aku tinggal di sini tapi tak begitu mengenal rute. Maklum tak terlalu sering keluar kota. Kami naik kereta lagi. Aku ajak mereka jalan kaki tapi menolak. Ya sudah.
Saat berada di angkutan umum menuju Ambassador Mall, kami berbincang. Entah kenapa aku memberitahukan informasi yang tolol. Karena lokasi hotel Marriott sudah dekat, aku pun membuatnya sebagai bahan obrolan. Aku katakan di sini pernah terjadi pemboman oleh teroris. Dan itulah alasannya mengapa seorang pria di kereta tadi menyarankan mereka berhati-hati, karena muka mereka Kaukasia sekali jadi sering dianggap orang Amerika. Tanggapan mereka hanya datar saja. Mereka bilang dalam bahasa Inggris , bahaya ada di aman-mana, jadi konyol sekali kalau tidak bepergian cuma karena takut teroris.
Sebenarnya aku merasa bodoh sekali mengatakan itu. Ada orang yang sudah mau susah payah berkunjung ke negeri ini tapi kami malah sodori hal-hal yang tak menyenangkan. Malu sekali. Harusnya aku bisa menjelaskan lebih banyak tempat-tempat menyenangkan di Jakarta dan sekitarnya sini. Namun apa daya, mereka penyuka tempat wisata alam. Apa yang bisa ditawarkan alam Jakarta?? Hampir NOL mungkin. Hampir semua sudah tertutup hutan beton dan aspal dan …sampah. Aku hanya bisa sarankan Kemang untuk hangout dan Ragunan untuk menikmati ruang terbuka.

Ciputra in “Brilliant, Crazy, Cocky: How the Top 1% of Entrepreneurs Profit from Global Chaos”

To look a lot cockier, the 'cocky' book should be in red. Just saying...

To date, the United States of America may be considered the hub of entrepreneurship in the world. We, however, almost forget how dynamic the world economy has become and that there are developing economies throughout the globe that keep catching us off-guard.

Sarah Lacy brings us a series of novel insights on the ever-changing entrepreneurial constellation in developing countries. And Indonesia is one of the eleven countries Lacy has visited and written about in “Brilliant, Crazy, Cocky”. While dedicating the whole of chapter 9 titled “The Emerging World’s Big Secret” to Indonesian entrepreneurs, she divides it into 3 subchapters, each of which focuses on three different facets of Indonesian entrepreneurs. These three are property, beauty care, and the IT startups.

Ciputra represents the first facet, i.e. the male-dominated  kingdom of property. Here Lacy highlights when Ciputra started to dream big by sending a letter to Walt Disney. Disney disapproved of his proposal. As we all may have learned, this later encouraged the young and ambitious Ciputra to work on a project in the notoriously ‘unpromising’ Northern coast of Jakarta, Ancol. But as an entrepreneur, Ciputra saw Ancol in a much different way and managed to prove Disney wrong.

The story goes on when Lacy tells us why Ciputra thinks Indonesia is likened to a sleeping giant whose growth was held down for centuries largely owing to the Dutch colonialization:


Indonesia is a giant that’s economically still asleep. Pick your favorite reason why: Indonesia has been one of the most dominated, unstable, tragedy-stricken countries of the 20th century.

[…] Indonesians may be the only people who envy 20th-century China. “They were only held down by communism for 50 years,” Ciputra says. “We were held down for 350 years.” (BCC,  p 184-185)


The diverse experience that Ciputra has amassed from the Dutch colonial days to the current administration of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono led the 80-year-old entrepreneur to a new, more massive undertaking than building affordable housings or luxurious townships in Indonesia or abroad. What Ciputra is now trying so hard to achieve, along with the entire nation, is transforming the opressed mentality to the liberating and empowering entrepreneurial one.

Despite the hard cold fact that changing such a mentality is a daunting task to complete, Ciputra relentlessly does anything he could to realize his dream. He without hesitation invested $ 10 million in Universitas Ciputra Entrepreneurship Center (UCEC) located in Surabaya, East Java.  Another enterprise to stimulate the nationwide growth of new entrepreneurs figure is called Training of Trainers (ToT), in which more than 2,000 teachers from 350 universities across the country are trained (BCC, p. 189).

In his ambitious project, Ciputra does not overlook the significant role of Indonesian government. As he argues:

“Ciputra rejects the U. S. view that all a government needs to do to spur innovation is get out of the way. “We have to involve the government because we are trying to change the nation entirely,”he says.” (BCC, p 190)


In order to combat poverty which often is the root of evil such as radicalism and crime, there is nothing that can compare to entrepreneurship. While it certainly improves the nation’s public welfare, entrepreneurship might help Indonesia create a new face of moslems and Islam, as Dino Patti Djalal (the Indonesian ambassador to the States) puts it. Djalal’s statement , which represents the SBY administration, is simply in line with Ciputra’s grand ambition. (This post is previously published on HERE)