On new media and Harmoko 2.0.

Apparently Obama’s visit to Indonesia was the highlight of the week for the media and the new media (ie. facebook, twitter and youtube). Since I’m not in the country, access to these new media outlets are the ones that are connecting me to what are the current affairs happening in Indonesia. Surprisingly what had the most attention in Obama’s visit was not the substance of his visit and the outcomes that arrives from it, but it was Tifatul Sembiring’s handshake to Michelle Obama (see video link).

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Video link: The Colbert Report on Tifatul Sembiring’s handshake with Michelle Obama

Apparently Obama’s visit to Indonesia was the highlight of the week for the media and the new media (ie. facebook, twitter and youtube). Since I’m not in the country, access to these new media outlets are the ones that are connecting me to the current affairs in Indonesia.

Continue reading “On new media and Harmoko 2.0.”

Video on Alleged Human Rights Abuse in Papua

Have you seen the video regarding the alleged torture by the Indonesian military towards indigenous Papuans? You should. Afterwards come back and read the rest of this post.

Link: TNI Violence towards Papuans

Have you seen the video above regarding the alleged torture by the Indonesian military towards indigenous Papuans? You should. Afterwards come back and read the rest of this post. Continue reading “Video on Alleged Human Rights Abuse in Papua”

Democracy: Friend or Phở*?

Viet Nam’s 1992 Constitution expresses that it is a state “of the people, by the people, and for the people”. However, on January 20th 2010, a court in Ho Chi Minh City sentenced Le Cong Dinh and Nguyen Tien Trung to prison terms of five and seven years for advocating multiparty democracy.[1] The Communist Party of Viet Nam (CPV) claims to represent the democratic aspirations of the Vietnamese and have established itself as the vanguard party enshrined in the Constitution, thus making political opposition illegal. Although political expression are in certain degrees allowed, the retain of the state’s control over the media and society gives little room for organized critical voices towards the government. Reforms for a market-oriented economy undertaken during the Đổi mới (renovation) in 1986 have contributed to Viet Nam’s rapid economic growth, but questions rise to what extent will Viet Nam further liberalize. This essay would argue why Viet Nam might not liberalize its political sphere in anytime soon, but why in the long run Viet Nam should.

Democracy: Friend or Phở*?
A Case for Political Liberalization in Viet Nam

Viet Nam’s 1992 Constitution maintains that it is a state “of the people, by the people, and for the people”. However, on January 20th 2010, a court in Ho Chi Minh City sentenced Le Cong Dinh and Nguyen Tien Trung to prison terms of five and seven years for advocating multiparty democracy.[1] The Communist Party of Viet Nam (CPV) claims to represent the democratic aspirations of the Vietnamese and have established itself as the vanguard party enshrined in the Constitution, thus making political opposition illegal. Although political expression are in certain degrees allowed, the state’s control over the media and society gives little room for organized critical voices towards the government. Reforms for a market-oriented economy undertaken during the Đổi mới (renovation) in 1986 have contributed to Viet Nam’s rapid economic growth, but questions rise to what extent will Viet Nam further liberalize. This essay would argue why Viet Nam might not liberalize its political sphere in anytime soon, but why in the long run Viet Nam should. Continue reading “Democracy: Friend or Phở*?”