Overseas Think Tank for Indonesia’s (OTTI) mission is to analyze and synthesize problems in Indonesia intellectually and to deliver the results to the government and the public of Indonesia with purpose of providing some answers that would develop Indonesia.
Since in elementary school, as students, our teachers have been teaching us that Indonesia is known for plenty of natural resources (kekayaan alam) and politeness of its people (penduduk yang ramah-tamah). As a nation, its goal is attaining wealth and justice for all based on The Five Principles (mencapai masyarakat yang adil dan makmur berdasarkan Pancasila ).
Now, let’s examine what the Indonesian government has been claiming about Indonesia and carefully evaluate the facts and separate them from fictions.
First of all, the geography. The government says that Indonesia is the most strategic country in Southeast Asia. In fact, Singapore is the one that can take the advantage of this strategic location by establishing proper infrastructure and trade-friendly regulations to encourage trade exchanges.
Second, the population. With 241,973,879 population (July 2005 est.), Indonesia is the 4th most populous country after China, India, and the United States. The government is proud and confident that no other country can “touch” Indonesia, even Australia is allegedly “afraid” of Indonesia. Rather, the quality of human resources is questionable and may not be up to par to compete with other countries whose population is comparable. For instance, what is Indonesia’s position in SEA Games? Do not even ask Indonesia’s position in Olympic Games.
Third, the natural resources. The government has convinced Indonesians that we have the most fertile soil and abundance of mineral resources including crude oil. In fact, how many people in Indonesian population who do not have electricity and clean drinking water? The answer might be shocking as there are in millions. How many people have died because of starving? What’s the price of gasoline in Indonesia today?
Fourth, the culture. We have been told that Indonesia is the most civilized nation. The people are polite and have good mannerism. Indonesia is believed to be the most diversed country. Instead, we can see Stone Age civilizations in Kalimantan and Irian Jaya. If they choose this as their lifestyle, that is fine. However, does the government already provide them with adequate infrastructure, education and health care to show them how a civilized lifestyle would help in everyday situation? To this very day, why do our people still kill each other? What do you think when you heard that Indonesia is one of the most corrupt countries?
Fifth, the politics. The government claims that we have the best ideology, which is The Five Principles (Pancasila). Also, our political system Demokrasi Pancasila is believed to be the best. Instead, they rise a question: what are they, actually? The government prefers “musyawarah mufakat” instead of voting, which is actually a process of collective consultation (musyawarah) to the point where unanimous decision (mufakat) can be made. Thus, if we ask, what is the government’s foreign policy? They will answer, “We have a free and active foreign policy (politik luar negeri bebas aktif).” Based on this so-called ideology, what did the government do in East Timor, in Aceh and in Irian Jaya? Where does Indonesia stand when 911 happened and the War in Iraq initiated? Is Indonesia clear enough to show who they are?
The above issues are just a few of Indonesia’s problems. We, Indonesians who know and experience different systems and adopt different values can most likely see such problems clearly and from different angles. I also believe that we have a plethora of ideas and suggestions that we can deliver to the government and the public of Indonesia. It is our moment to utilize this forum where we can contribute our ideas and suggestions.
How to Participate as an Analyst?
Submit your article, several words of your education background, and profession to email@example.com. Your application will be considered, if it is in line with the Overseas Think Tank for Indonesia’s mission. The founder reserves the right to consider, re-consider, edit and decline (not to publish) any article(s) regardless its content.
Dr. Beni Bevly holds BA in Political Science, MBA in Marketing, and DBA in Organizational Leadership. The academic and professional institutions he attended and became a member were University of California Berkeley, Stanford University, California Coast University, University of Indonesia, IPWI Advance School of Management, International Sport and Science Association (ISSA), Commonwealth Club, and World Tae Kwon Do Federation (WTF).
He has been interested in social and political issues since he was a teenager. At high school, he led study groups where students could practice their writing and discussion abilities. In collage, Beni Bevly became one of the leaders of Student Body Council, Chairman and Instructor of Tae Kwon Do, Chief of Provosts in Student Military Organization and Coordinator for Political Science Newsletter. He also involves in advocating human right in Indonesia and writes for various media, online and offline.
What People Say About OTTI?
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Introducing Beni Bevly
Oleh Mutiara Andalas, SJ
Kebijaksanaan sering diukur dengan uban. Apakah kecerdasan juga? Jika jawabannya positif, kita ketemu pribadi yang memenuhi kriteria tersebut. Ia adalah sahabat saya sendiri, Beni Bevly.
Selama raodshow kemanusiaan ini, Suryo dan saya memberikan julukan baru kepada Beni sebagai akademisi cerdas. Di Indo, bahkan di US, banyak akademisi sok cerdas. No offense,guys. Selama roadshow, Suryo dan saya sangat cemas kalau banyak peserta akan menanyakan soal-soal yang “high politics” atau “US type of question: “njlimet”). Namun, kecemasan itu segera hilang karena Beni Bevly selalu di sisi kita. Wawasan sejarah dan politik Indonesianya pantas diacungi jempol. Ia bisa bicara secara cerdas mengenai ideologi-ideologi besar macam komunisme hingga Cornell Papernya Ben Anderson untuk audiens dengan latar belakang akademik yang berbeda. Wah…wah…wah… kecerdasannya bikin kita “ngiler.” “Beni kok bisa secerdas itu ya,” komentar Suryo nggak bisa nahan diri untuk bertanya.
Alhasil, Suryo dan saya senantiasa aman kalau Beni ada di samping kita saat presentasi. Kalau mulai ada pertanyaan-pertanyaan yang lumayan “aneh” di telinga kita, kita langsung menoleh pada Beni. “Giliran, eloe, Ben yang jawab.” Seperti biasa, Beni dengan gaya cool-nya meladeni pertanyaan-pertanyaan itu. Wah benar-benar lulusan FISIP UI. Akhirnya kita memang jadi the new “Il Divo” dalam roadshow kemanusiaan ini.
Sunday, December 09, 2007
Sex, money and the best there is, www.pelopor.nl,
… An other favourite of mine is a think tank by Beni Bevli. He is a weathered career manager and intellectual who by means of his site wants to “facilitate intellectuals to contribute to Indonesia”. He is aiming high; in his opinion the Indonesian reality calls for drastic changes. His analytical diagnosis is rather dramatic – the official political, social and economic reality is just an illusion. The proud, even superior, claims of national perfection, is totally at odds with everyday life. His goal is to produce analytical and critical reflections on the problems the country is coping with. In that way the public opinion as well as the policies of the government, should be influenced.
Two of the recent articles spring to mind. There has been a series of articles on the Wonosobo mass graves. They are about coming to terms with the bloody coup by Suharto in 1965. But even more at heart is the very recent one on money . On the distribution of money that is.
The country’s economic growth seems to be at a sound level (6 – 7% annually) and inflation is under control (about 6%). It is what might have been expected; free market economy did not skip Indonesia. Private equity is having a ball these days – not only private but also public companies fall in their hands. It is like reading the scenario’s described in “The Shock Doctrine“. . No wonder the richest rich get richer and the poor masses poorer. And that the number of poor keep on rising by the millions, that the unemployment rate almost doubled (nearing 13% now), that almost 20% of the children never attend school and over 35% only will finish elementary school. At the same time Suharto may be a rival to Bill Gates as it comes to wealth, while for all but a few of the 241 million Indonesian these are worrying economical times. …