Jonan the Jonah of Transportation

Common sense is not common and nowhere is it more uncommon than in the mind of the Transport Minister Ignatius Jonan. His latest feat of uncommon sense is in banning – and this is not very clear from statements his Ministry has made: online applications for commuter transport or anything less than three-wheeled modes of […]

The incredible silence and welcome to China’s effrontery to Malaysia

Something incredible, unprecedented and potentially dangerous happened in Malaysia last Friday that most Malaysians do not seem to have paid much notice to. In fact many of the Malaysian Chinese actually welcomed it, fed up as they were by Malay hooligans trying to stir up Malay supremacist and anti-Chinese sentiments in Malaysia. Photo from Free […]

Light at the End of the Road for Bersih?

Then commentary in Malaysiakini by Neil Koh headlined End of the Road for Bersih?  is great food for thought. Unspun agrees with the author that by allowing the Bersih 4.0 rally to go on Najib has let the steam out of the pressure cooker. Part of the allure of the Bersih 4 rally was that […]

The talk about Chinese-Malay participation in Bersih 4

As a Malaysian who has lived overseas for most of his adult life, the last two decades spent in Indonesia, Unspun cannot help but marvel at the racial divide in Malaysia, even during a unifying event such as Bersih 4, that took place over this weekend. For those not familar with Malaysian politics Bersih 4 is […]

Jokowi to connect better with new Communications Team?

It appears that after months of having no one to tell the story on behalf of the Government and giving rise to uncertainty and confusion about government policies and decisions, President Jokowi may finally be taking a step in the right direction. According to the Jawa Pos News Network (below), he has appointed Teten Masduki and Sukardi […]

The most dangerous thing about Jokowi for us in Indonesia.

When the subject of Jokowi comes up, there is usually an awkward pause as everyone tries to express the mixture of frustration, despair and disappointment over the man they elected as President with high hopes for reform just a few months ago. The pause, Unspun suspects, is because they are not really ready to confront […]

Ahok: Last man standing and Indonesia’s best hope for change?

Living in Indonesia these days feels as if someone has pulled the plug, and all the common sense and integrity that we expect even of our most revered political hopes are draining quickly out of the country. The Outsider Jokowi, whom many of us had hoped would be a catalyst for change against a corrupted and ossified […]

Jokowi’s lost the plot: time to seek professional help

Unspun was one of those people rooting for Jokowi when he was contesting against Prabowo in the presidential elections. Not because he was the best of candidates but he was the better candidate in terms of integrity. That alone held out hope that he might be able to change Indonesia, because for sure a figure like […]

Are good intentions harming Indonesia in the new Cicak-Buaya episode?

Five year from now when Indonesians look back at this moment in the nation’s history what conclusions would they draw? What seems to suggest itself is that the Police-KPK issue is likely to be perceived as  watershed moment. On one extreme is a scenario depicting the last gasp of the Lords of Corruption and the Old […]