I'm your huckleberry

though i can't change the world, i can always change myself. btw: tolong bantu Panti Asuhan Bustanul Aitam (http://ulim-orphan.blogspot.com/ ). Bank BRI, Unit Meureudu, Cabang Sigli, Aceh, Indonesia// Account Number: 3970.01.002291.53-4// On behalf of: Yayasan Bustanul Aitam// Swift Code: BRINIDJA. Contact: Ilyas Ibrahim S.AG, mobile: +62-(0)81362672600

Saturday, December 31, 2005

bi-weekly round up, Dec '05

Instead of preparing office bi-weekly report, I decide to write my blog bi-weekly round up.

House hand over ceremony (Peurade, Pidie, Dec 21)

The event went well, with Bupati Pidie (District Head), Head of Bappeda (Regional Development Board), and Regional Army/Police Chief was there. Our team and partner also complete, including the representative from Embassy Donor.

Five house ready, compare to 25 ~ 50 we planned. Many houses have reached final stage of construction: have roof, wall partially smooth cement, and rough floor. I believe all houses, 200, in that area will finish by mid Jan ‘06.

The event is a proof that we have progressed significantly in shelter program. Hopefully, donors will provide more fund for program expansion.

Currently, around 1,150 houses in construction, majorities are new house and some are rehabilitation of damage house. In village Rawa Gampong and Peukan Baro (near Sigli city), 200 houses has advanced rapidly. I’m confidence by mid Feb ’06 all 200 will finish. At the same time, other 750 houses have begun construct across Pidie region.

In the afternoon, Mas Wawan (our partner area manager) invited us for free drink to celebrate the good day. Personally, I feel happy, like a little kid, and wanna hop around such a craziest fox.

Language alienation

Now, many people use English term/acronym in daily communication. In the past time, people use Indonesia term/acronym for the same object. Even in Indonesian they may not know what the object they talk, but at least they familiar with the term.

Worse, now people use English term even without knowing what the meaning of the word. They just say it because other says the term. Example of the words: NGO (non-government organization), UN (United Nations), Red Cross, livelihood, shelter, and mangrove.

From quick check and few discussions, I find out people mostly does not understand that NGO is what in Indonesian call LSM (Lembaga Swadaya Masyarakat, Community Development Institution). Many think that UN and its agent that does not have ‘UN’ letter in its acronym (ILO, WHO, FAO, WFP) are the same as usual NGO. As in the case NGO term, commoners do not know that UN is what we call PBB (Persatuan Bangsa-bangsa).

Red Cross is easier to identify, because all Red Cross around the world, including Palang Merah Indonesia, has the same logo and everybody familiar with it.

Rather than saying “pemberdayaan ekonomi rakyat” (people economic empowerment, which is famous term for politician and govt official in Indonesia), now they say “program livelihood”.

I’m not sure whether it is better to translate the term into Indonesian, so people understand better what they say. Or let them use the English term, without knowing what it is, following the way our discussion among donors/NGO which usually use English.

Anyway, what matters for the people is how much actually we have provided for their need; food, house, capital to start up small business, various small infrastructure/public building, etc.

Dances; creative or fake art?

In Sunday (Dec 25), my friends and I visited a traditional dance group at a Junior High School Wanna Great, Lubuk Gapuy, in Greater Aceh area. The kids, all girl and nice too, show us four dances, Seumerah (washing), Likok Pulo (move of Pulo), Panyot (lamp), and a medley of the three dances. Two of the dances, Seumeurah and Panyot, suppose to be creative dances. While Likok Pulo is a traditional dances from Pulo (island, which is located at coastal around Banda Aceh).

After the visit, we begin discussing what traditional dances or creative dances are. One of my friend state that the essence of Acehnese dance is a complex combination of dynamic varieties move, sound of music from instrument and vocal, and collectiveness. Then she criticized the dances of Seumeurah and Panyot for not having the dynamic varieties move, thus fail to be a real Acehnese dances. She continue explaining that the two dances is similar to many Malay dances, where no vocal sound and consist of simple step forward/ back/ left/ right/ up/ down.

Another friend, who is dancer, also criticizes that combining several dances into one dance is not new creation. In fact, it makes the dances loosing its original value. He suggests that the combination is based on popular and commercial demand which disrespect art of dance. Minimizing movement in dances also show lack of creativity, disgracing any dances claiming to be Acehnese one.

One thing we agree: the chair of the dance group is civil servant who actually lack of creativity. But his position in cultural office makes him an art creator, especially the one with govt sponsor.

A year after commemoration

Dec 26, as many other people in Aceh, I attended one year commemorated of tsunami. I was in Grand Mosque of Baiturrahman, Banda Aceh. People come to say pray together, for them who die or lost in the tsunami, and for a better future (especially with peace is in Aceh now).

Then, I moved to a “Siang Malam” coffee shop near the mosque. Siang Malam famous for mie kocok (noodle soup) and es campur (ice drink). You know, I always in hungry state. In addition, the place also reminds me of my past.

By noon, my friend wanted to go to Ulee Lheu area, which is called as “the ground zero” of tsunami. The president, SBY, was attended the commemoration there. Ironically, some of the people who live in the camp for almost a year have to demolish their home. This is to allow the President to have a good view in that area. Well, whoever the president, authoritarian or democratically elected, she/he just human who does not like seeing misery but she/he happy to trampled people to covers it.

As another tourist who still not bored for misery sight seeing, we check out the house and port construction in that area. One of the board state the spirit of the people: “lebih baik disini, kampung kita sendiri” (yes the word is similar to popular rock song Rumah Kita). I just hope that more NGO will let the people build the donation house by them self; known as public participatory approach development.

Btw, déjà vu, my mother in 20 Dec 2004 was in Jakarta, visiting me. That was how she escaped tsunami. And recently, Dec 18, my mother flied to Jakarta again.

Post conflict program – assessment

As soon after tsunami, I attended several donors meeting: USAID, international NGO coordination, World Bank, and ADB. One thing that I repeat consistently: without peace, tsunami recovery program only solve partial Aceh backwardness problem. Cause Aceh backwardness problem, such as poverty, low education quality, slow economic growth/industrialization, largely conflicts related. During the conflicts, Aceh was totally in isolation. In fact delay in international emergency assistance for Aceh happen because of the “Martial Law” and years of isolation (see special section Human Rights Watch on Aceh.

As soon as peace process begins, with strong support from international community, I believe that it is time for me to come back to Aceh. And there the peace agreement signed in August 15, 2005. It bringing more hopes that ever, far beyond the hope during earlier peace dialog (Cessation Of Hostility Agreement, Jan 2000- Mar 2003).

After I join UNDP ERTR, again I stress the important of post-conflict program in addition to tsunami recovery program. I said internally, international NGO coordination meeting, seminars, and also every meeting with local government/NGO.

When our boss from Jakarta says she will send mission to conduct assessment to prepare post conflict livelihood program, I’m happy again, like a little kids, craziest as a fox (you see, I rarely feel happy, so this is a good sign).

During Dec 28-29, we conducted assessment for the post conflict livelihood program. Hopefully, the proposal will ready soon and in two or three months we ready for the program. Well, good news at the end of the year.

So… happy new year! Hopefully, next year will be more productive, in work and blogging ;-)

Ganja Sebagai Bumbu??

Sebagai orang Aceh, dalam perjalanan saya ke berbagai daerah, ketika makan selalu timbul pertanyaan dari teman2: “Katanya di Aceh ganja digunakan sebagai bumbu masakan?”

Saya biasa balik bertanya:
  • Apa anda pernah makan masakan Aceh yg pakai bumbu ganja?

  • Apa teman kamu yang bercerita menyatakan pernah makan masakan Aceh yg pakai bumbu ganja?
Dan saya tahu pasti jawaban yg diberikan adalah “tidak” dilanjutkan: “katanya”...ya...hanya “katanya”.

Di Indonesia ini saya sudah dengar banyak “katanya”. Katanya indonesia kaya raya, kolam susu, tongkat kayu dan batu jadi tanaman. Kok penghasilan per kapita rendah aka miskin terus ya???

===
Lihat link berikut mengenai “katanya” ganja sebagai bumbu:

Kalau masakan Aceh biasanya suka dikasih campuran ganja sedikit. Katanya kalau di Aceh, ganja memang dipakai sebagai campuran bumbu masak, apalagi kalau gulai kepala ikan. (Dunia Ibu).

Mi Aceh yang Pakai "Tuâ" (Kompas Kamis, 21 Juli 2005).

Ini lebih netral, “Ada Ganja dalam Masakan Aceh?“ (Kompas, Sabtu 23 Juli 2005).
===

Pendukung teori ganja sebagai bumbu masakan umumnya hanya berpegang pada “katanya”, tidak ada yg bisa menunjukkan bukti apa pun. Sayang “katanya” itu sudah menjadi kebenaran yg diterima apa adanya oleh orang-orang bodoh yg mendominasi negri lemot ini, mulai dari yg tidak berpendidikan, sampe yg punya gelar Doktor (spt Hamzah Haz itu), mulai yg pegawai kecil, ampe pejabat tinggi. Semuanya hanya “katanya” (pantas ini negri nggak bergerak kemana-mana, dikira masalah bisa selesai dengan “katanya”).

Seingat saya, pernyataan ganja sebagai bumbu masak di Aceh dilontarkan oleh Prof. Ali Hasjmi, mantan Gubernur Aceh & juga mantan ketua MUI Aceh. Ucapan itu muncul pertengahan 80-an or awal 90-an, ketika berita suburnya ganja di Aceh semakin top.

Sebagian besar orang Aceh memandang Ali Hasjmi (AH) sbg seorang tokoh. Bagi saya, beliau seorang penokoh rakyat Aceh. Mengapa? Tulisan sejarah beliau terlalu banyak yg dipelintir. AH juga cenderung menulis tentang Aceh dan orang Aceh sebagai makhluk yg tidak ada cela, tidak mungkin salah. Semua yg berbau Aceh hanya ada baiknya! So ketika masalah banyaknya ganja di Aceh mendapat sorotan nasional, AH mencari pembenaran dengan menyatakan ganja adalah bumbu masakan.

Apa dia punya bukti sejarah? Tantangan sama bagi yg menyatakan ganja adalah bumbu, apa kalian bisa menunjukkan bukti sejarah kepada saya?

Mari kita lihat!

Orang Eropa yg paling top mengenai sejarah & kebudayaan Aceh adalah Snouck Hurgronje (SH), dengan maha karya “De Atjehers” (sudah diterjemahkan dalam bhs Inggris dan Indonesia. Terjemahan Indonesia diterbitkan Balai Pustaka). Dalam buku paling top tentang Aceh itu, SH menggambarkan berbagai hal terkait dengan orang Aceh, mulai bangun tidur, makan, kerja, ibadah, sampe tidur lagi. Juga ada perayaan2, kepercayaan, dsb-nya. Termasuk didalam buku itu dibahas berbagai bumbu yang digunakan dalam masakan Aceh dan info obat2-an tradisional. Tapi tidak ada satu pun yang menyatakan bahwa ganja (mariyuana or kanabis) digunakan sebagai bumbu. Menariknya, dalam rangka merendahkan orang Aceh, SH menyatakan bahwa orang Aceh juara madat (hisap candu) berhubung konsumsi candu per kapita orang Aceh jauh diatas rata2 konsumsi pe kapita nusantara.

Bila SH dengan sangat berlebihan menunjukkan hobi madat untuk merendahkan orang Aceh, mengapa dia luput memperhatikan kebiasaan pake ganja?? Apa SH kurang teliti?? Tapi dia mendaftar bumbu2 yg dipakai di Aceh. Apa SH belum kenal ganja? (tanya: ganja dikenal mulai tahun berapa sih di Eropa??). Atau memang pada saat itu ganja belum popular di Aceh?

Ahli ilmu sosial akan bilang, ya meskipun tidak ada bukti empiris/tertulis yg kuat, coba gali cerita dari mulut ke mulut. Okay, saya kembali bertanya, pernah nggak anda2 pendukung teori ganja sbg bumbu masak check cerita2 tsb ke orang2 tua?

Lagi2, krn faktor malas dan kebodohan, pasti jawabannya: TIDAK!

Waktu saya masih tinggal dan jalan ke berbagai daerah di Aceh (khususnya tahun 1990-1994), saya selalu meluangkan waktu untuk bertanya tentang hal ini. Apalagi waktu itu Daerah Operasi Militer (DOM) sedang berlangsung, dimana berita ganja di Aceh sangat rajin dihembuskan oleh TNI/Polri dan media2 nasional sbg antek Orba.

Hal yg saya temukan, pernyataan bahwa ganja sbg bumbu masakan ternyata muncul dari generasi yg lahir setelah 1950-an, ya mereka yg besar di tahun 60&80-an. Contohnya ya Ibu, Makcik, dan Miwa saya, juga beberapa orang lain yg segenerasi. Nenek saya (dari pihak Ibu or Ayah, or nenek angkat) semua menyatakan tidak memakai ganja dalam masakannya. Demikian juga pernyataan beberapa kakek/nenek yg saya temui sepanjang perjalanan saya dari Lhok Seumawe, Bireuen, Samalanga, Meureudu, Sigli, Banda Aceh, terus ke Meulaboh, & Tapaktuan.

Karena pernyataannya saling berbeda, maka ada yg bohong. Entah yg generasi Ibu/Makcik/Miwa, or Kakek/Nenek. Tapi kalau melihat sikap orang2 generasi setelah 1950-an suka pakai “katanya“, saya lebih percaya generasi kakek/nenek saya.

Kalau ditanya ke restoran yg top di Aceh pun, tidak ada yg bilang mereka pakai ganja dalam masakan. Boleh jadi mereka juga bohong. Yg jelas kalau anda tanya ke si juru masak dan dia tahu anda pendatang yg sedang nyari masakan pakai ganja, paling dijawab “Coba saja sendiri“, dengan senyum penuh tanda rahasia.

Bagi pedagang, itu jawaban rasional untuk menjual produknya. Apa mau anda calon pembeli pindah ke puluhan keude gule sie kameng (gule daging kambing) lain di sepanjang jalan di Aceh???

Nah kalau si penanya menyimpulkan bahwa itu masakan benar mengandung ganja, saya kira karena dia bodoh saja. Jump into conclusion fallacy!

Ada yg bilang, itu di resto Medan Baru (krekot bunder, Jakarta) ada yg jual “Sambel Ganja”. Well, lagi2 ketololon yg berlebihan. “Sambel Ganja”, di Aceh dikenal sebagai Asam Udeung (Asam Udang), dibuat dari: asam belimbing, udang direbus setengah masak, daun jeruk nipis (diiris2), dan sedikit sereh. Satu piring kecil modalnya nggak sampe seribu. Kalau dipakai judul “Asam Udang”, sumpah paling mahal cuma laku Rp 3,000/porsi. Kalau pakai judul “Sambel Ganja”, orang2 bodoh yg punya duit akan beli pada harga Rp 5,000-8,000/ porsi (dgn isi sktr 3~4 sendok makan). Dan setiap orang bisa makan sampe 2 porsi.

Kalau anda pedagang, pilih mana jual pada harga murah or mahal?

Bagaimana saya percaya pendapat pendukung teori ganja sebagai bumbu masak, membedakan irisan daun jeruk dengan daun ganja dalam sambel udang saja tidak bisa!

Bukti2 lain tentang katanya ganja sebagai bumbu masak berasal dari perasaan yg muncul sedang/ setelah makan: tidak kenyang2, mengantuk, dada berdebar, pusing, dll. Well, dengan lemak kiloan di sekitar perut dan pantat anda yg malas, wajar anda mengantuk terus, baik saat lapar mau pun kenyang. Dasar lu orang malas. Kepala pusing dan dada berdebar?? Apa yg diharapkan setelah makan berbagai lemak dan kolesterol dalam masakan Aceh? Badan jadi lebih fit???

Masakan Aceh sangat dipengaruhi oleh masakan India (berbagai kari; dari kambing, ikan, ayam, apalagi kari daging ikan Hiu). Ganja juga istilah India. Karena itu saya juga tanya kebiasaan pakai ganja di Asia bagian selatan kepada seorang peneliti yg lama tinggal di India, Banglades, Pakistan, dan sekitar. Dia juga penikmat kari. Dia bilang, di Nepal ada lassi yg pakai ganja. Tapi itu juga biasanya dijual untuk orang2 bule yg mencari sesuatu yg eksotis.

Well, repot nih jadinya. Memang ganja udah dikenal dalam berbagai masyarakat, tapi saya masih ragu ganja adalah bumbu masakan di Aceh. Karena kurangnya bukti, yg ada adalah penyataan “katanya” dari generasi yg besar di tahun setelah 1960-an, masa ganja popular bersama the Doors, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, dll (check out “Sweet Leaf“ - Black Sabbath). Pada saat bersamaan muncul buku2 yg mempromosikan ganja sebagai bumbu masakan, misal Adam Gottlieb’s, “Art and Science of Cooking with Cannabis(High Times / Level Press, 1974).

Menurut saya, era 70-an ini lah ide2 tentang ganja berkembang pesat. Di Aceh, ide2 ganja ini berkembang, kebetulan, sejalan dengan operasi militer 1976-1982, 1989-1990-an. Dan bukan kebetulan bila ganja bisa bebas keluar Aceh karena keterlibatan oknum TNI/Polri, atau minimal: TNI/Polri tidak bertugas dengan baik, hanya malas2-an dan makan gaji buta.

Saran saya buat pejabat/tokoh Aceh: jangan membenarkan keberadaan ganja di Aceh dgn mitos ganja sebagai bumbu masak. Pejabat/tokoh Aceh harus berani menunjukkan mengapa ganja melimpah ruah di Aceh, yaitu lemahnya kemauan TNI/Polri menegakkan hukum! Boleh anda bilang ganja ditanam diam2, dirahasiakan dari aparat TNI/Polri. Tapi ingat, kayu haram dari Aceh juga bebas keluar ke Sumut di depan mata TNI/Polri. Lagi2 masalah kemauan menegakkan hukum!

Dan jangan anda urus masalah ganja di negri jauh entah dimana, di Jakarta di setiap pojok jalan orang bebas jualan narkoba. Pakai istilah “katanya“ lebih mudah beli pil koplo/ ekstasi daripada obat sakit kepala.

Akhirnya, satu saran buat pengguna ganja: berhentilah menggunakan ganja. Enakan ‘makan’ ekstasi/the ice/the cooler. ….Apalagi kalau dikombinasikan dengan booster mentol; dari rokok, permen, bahkan vicks vaporub. Sediakan es batu buat sistem pendingin. Plus Gabriel & Dresden, di pantai lagi! Fly with the devil! Reap it! (see www.ecstasy.org ).

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


Here is the area what I call wet camp, in Panteraja, Pidie (150KM from Banda Aceh). My colleagues was there, Monday (Dec 19, '05), to survey the area. Mr Raja (left) and Mr Mubarak (right). Tent, plastic, slump, and lot of water! What a hell of area to live in.
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every time it rain, part2

Another rainy night, short yet heavy one. I’m worry again about the housing project. Worry all the time!

Tomorrow we will have the house hand over ceremony. My partner told me several houses ready, many almost finish, the rest around 70% finish.

Hopefully tomorrow everything will go smoothly.

Several reporters confirm to come. If this success, we can do more for this region, my home land, home of the rebel. Hopefully!

(note: when Iskandar Muda, king of Aceh in early 1600s rebel against his uncle, Pidie is his base. Teungku Chik di Tiro, and his family, fought continuously (1874-1910) the Dutch invasion, his base is Pidie. Teungku Daud Beureueh (Darul Islam movement, 1953-1962) also from Pidie, with his main commando in Geumpang, a small town in mountainous area in Pidie. Finally, Teungku Hasan di Tiro, also from Pidie. Now you know why I name it ‘home of the rebel’)

Well, I tell u before about wet camp, here is the picture. So you can imagine what a downtrodden life they have! Especially in this rainy season.

My friend is calling his colleagues in the field. Discussing traffic problem in the area where hand over ceremony will be hold. A big tree fall down to the street. But I believe tomorrow the area will be clear!

Now, I just want to sleep, so I can wake up fresh & ready for tomorrow ceremony.

every time it rain

Yesterday, I visited the house construction site, again (Dec 18). The house construction has progressed, a lot. Roof is ready and most of the wall cemented smoothly. Floor also cemented, though some part is still coarse. The wall is ready for first paint layer.

I thought: finally, we will have our show! And hopefully, the show will bring us more money for the tsunami victims or even conflict victims.

Yes, we plan to hold the house hand over ceremony in Dec 21. Our partner has invited important people, including an Ambassador of Donor Country.

I do have concern at that time. If the rain falls, we are in big trouble! In fact my partner, Mas Wawan, was joking that if only he can hire a shaman rain to chase away the cloud from the area.

Tonight, our worry comes into a nightmare. Damn…damn…damn! Suddenly rain drops heavily, like God against and curse our plan! I really stress out. They just paint the house, so it will be gone in the morning. Walah….I don’t know what to say. I rarely pray, even now I realize pray will not help me, for God sabotage my plan.

I thought it is only govt officer who harass our program, now I know….God maybe hate it too.

My brain jams again! So what can I do? Confuse, tired, and desperate!

Okay, never mind, forget the entire problem! So I click my media player, get some helloween, the hardest, to break out my hang brain: midnight sun, push, falling higher, and ride the sky!  

Blow it!!!!

Hoping the song can boost my spirit:

With magic in our hands
We are lost-and-found contenders
For a kingdom of our stand
Come together no surrender at all

When we unite
We're falling higher
When worlds collide
We'll stand straight in turmoil and fear
No harm coming near
(helloween , falling higher)

At 10.30, the rain drops lightly! Really tired now and hungry too. Headache! Damn, that people in the wet camp will get wash again. &%*(^@#&)_* pap lemo! (there, I curse again).

So it goes as Nazareth sing: every time it rain, i fall apart, than I start to remember. Every time it rain, I think of them (yehhh, a little plesetan).

Then…eat…eat…and eat. To survive my stress, eating is another solution.

(this post could not be uploaded last night, internet was down when rain, as usual. So I post it in the morning after)

Sunday, December 18, 2005

media (melanjutkan) pembodohan masyarakat

media di indonesia sepertinya tidak lelah berusaha membuktikan bahwa mereka adalah garda terdepan bangsa dalam pembodohan masyarakat.

bersaing keras dengan lembaga2 pendidikan penjual ijazah, media di indonesia menyebarkan berbagai kebohongan, menjebak masyarakat yg umumnya kurang pendidikan dan lemah daya nalar, lalu berdiam diri ketika hal yg sebenarnya terbongkar.

demikian dalam kasus money game g cosmos, probest, anne ahira, dan roy suryo.

sbgmn diketahui, Anne Ahira menjadi top di media setelah kompas memunculkan profilnya (lihat: kompas1 & kompas2). lalu media lain (swa, cosmo, intisari, dll) menyusul kebodohan kompas. hanya majalah tempo yg berhati2 dlm menilai sukses anne ahira.

banyak teman2 netter coba mengingat media: dgn kirim surat pembaca, nimbrung di milis pantau (tempat orang media), dan via kampanye net. ada yg ekstrim (termasuk saya), ada yg lebih netral.

sayang masih banyak juga jadi korban. akhirnya, anne ahira & elite team menjadi "korban" juga, dlm artian: mesin penipuan mereka diputus oleh FFSI.

saya terus terang kecewa dgn cara berakhirnya riwayat anne ahira. saya lebih berharap perkembangan alami multi-level-marketing (mlm)/money game yg akan mengakhiri anne ahira. sehingga benar2 terbukti bahwa yg namanya mlm itu sama seperti usaha lain: satu direktur, beberapa wakil direktur, dan ribuan/jutaan karyawan. untuk money game malah: satu bos penipu, beberapa wakil bos penipu, ribuan/jutaan korban penipuan.

apa hendak dikata, skrg tinggal penyesalan bagi sebagian pengikutnya: Curhat Seorang Korban Money Game . yg lain maju terus dengan FFSI Indonesia.

ya sudah lah, yg berlalu biar lah berlalu, yg patah kan tumbuh, yg hilang kan berganti. maksudnya, pembodohan oleh media dan penipu ala g cosmos, probest, pt qsar, dan anne ahira masih akan terus ada disekitar kita.

eh…benar aja! namun sekarang beda isunya: bukan uang, tapi popularitas. di negri ini, media memang suka sekali dengan pernyataan kontroversial dari orang popular.

dari bidang ekonomi, lebih mudah saya memberikan contohnya. coba, pernah dengar kah nama Ari Kuncoro atau Sudarno Sumarto? saya yakin sangat sedikit mahasiswa/dosen ekonomi yg pernah dengar. Kalau ditanya siapa ekonom indonesia, pasti yg disebut nama2 popular yg sering muncul dikoran (tahu sendiri lah namanya).

ini lah beda ekonom di negara maju dengan negara terbelakang spt indonesia. di negara maju ekonom adalah orang2 peneliti bidang ekonomi yg punya publikasi di jurnal2 ilmiah. di indonesia, ekonom adalah orang yg berani asal komentar di media tanpa melakukan penelitian apa pun. biasa disebut pengamat, mirip pengangguran yg duduk di pinggir jalan dan suka mengamati yg lewat sambil ber-siut2.

hal yg sama berlaku bagi dunia informasi dan teknologi (IT). yg top ya roy suryo , yg sebenarnya tidak tahu apa2 mengenai IT. orang yg benar2 tahu dan kerja dibidang IT malah nggak top.

banyak teman2 dari IT yg keroyokan membongkar kebohongan roy. berhubung medan perang berbeda, maka tidak bisa dibilang siapa yg menang atau kalah. kalau di media konvensional (koran, radio, tv), jelas roy yg menang. di internet, bisa dibilang roy kalah.

namun baru2 ini medan perang itu terjadi di kedua tempat: konvesional (koran) dan internet. berbeda dengan perang2 yg sebelumnya, kali ini di kedua medan perang roy kalah telak.

dalam perang tersebut, lagi2 terlihat media di Indonesia sangat tidak bermutu. dengan adanya internet, sangat mudah mencari info perang roy vs priyadi (+ pasukan IT). tinggal google aja dikit atau kunjungi blog2 yg melawan roy. pasti dapat info yg cukup dan segera bisa dikonfirmasi untuk mengimbangi pernyataan roy. sayang media di indonesia lebih fokus pada popularitas (si roy) daripada isi masalah (IT) yg sedang dibicarakan.

media tidak pernah mau belajar dari kegagalan/kesalahan masa lalu, dan tetap bertahan pada prinsip bahwa popularitas jauh diatas segalanya. so it goes, in the land where stupidity is highly demanded, the stupidity rules the game.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Corruption and a leftover wood


This simple board from leftover wood is people cry out about corruption: "Please Head of District, prosecutes the contractor who build this road because it was better than now. Too much corruption. Even motor-cycle-cab cannot use it, moreover car". In the stick is typical Pidie (Aceh) curse which say "company of a bad seed" (literally it is said: the company of no-good sperm).
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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

A week end + Monday!

Friday, a colleague informed me that I have to replace my boss for a seminar “Tsunami Summit 2005”, @ 12 December, in Lhok Seumawe city (280 KM from Banda Aceh). At the same time, several report already in deadline.

So this week end becomes a full working hour: preparing weekly report (not finish), Note to File for 1st period project (feebly finish), and seminar presentation.

As usual, I get loss with all the report. Disorder comes in and my brain is jammed!

So there I am, Sunday searching material for my presentation. Late @ night finished my so-so presentation.

It was a very rainy week-end, raising my concern that the house construction will delay again. The area, where our house project implemented is low ground, most likely will flood.

Monday morning, wake up at 06.00, in total I slept for less than 4 hours. I have to travel to Lhok Seumawe, around 3 hour trip.

Passing Panteraja area, where torn refugee camp is, misery expose to my face. Wet camp, flooded since Sunday night. The only thing in my mind: need more money for more programs, including the permanent shelter for these downtrodden wet refugees.

In few second, we pass our housing project side, Peurade. I can see the mark from flash flood. Damn, I think I will not able to show the house to Donors before Dec 26, where I can also show Panteraja wet camp and beg more money for program expansion.

The rainy season suppose to be good luck, but now it is turn into a problem! (in Tuesday, Dec 13, my partner inform me that some of the house owner loss their sand, washed by the flood. It is difficult time to buy sand, since the sand mine is in the river and the area totally wash).

I tried my best to take a nap during the trip. A few minutes in my nap, my mobile phone was ringing. Hmmm, it was not an important call.

In the seminar, no easy life too! People keep cornering speaker from BRR, many bashing NGO poor performance, and later they also turn to me.

Well, I come not only as UNDP ERTR officer, I also an Acehnese and my mother is suffered by tsunami. So I know better how to respond all the cynical with my own cynical, irony, and even sarcasm. I gave them the same statement what I say to my mother: she must not dream that she will get the donation house in one year (I said it at the end of January 2005, still have to wait to proof it). I repeat again the same statement when we visit my village, Lampulo, recently (Dec 4), where an international NGO is showing the house design (I know the NGO has budget and they will build it. But it takes time, which some of this people cannot easily understand).

Not all is negative and skeptical. I also explain how public participatory approach in house construction (and other programs) delivery a better result: minimum complaint, lower cost, no corruption, and good quality. Though time to build house is relatively longer, it is a learning process: a valuable investment for future community development.

And as usual, in my tired and desperation, I have an easy way to get over it. I eat ‘sate matang’ (local style beef barbeque, famous from Matang Geulempang Dua, 225 KM from Banda Aceh) with soup. Then, I buy three medium size durians. Arrive in Sigli, at 10.15 pm, I eat one and half of the durian, while the other eaten by driver and security (now they know my stomach is larger than they thought). At 11.00, I go to bed with full stomach and hibernated brain.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Other failure is our success

One colleague sent me news (dating Nov 30) from local newspaper with note: Community refused housing assistance from an NGO (non-government organization) as the houses didn’t meet standard building code. However, NICE NGO (edited, our partner name) got a good report for smooth construction & good quality of houses in the area (see bolded sentences below).

You can measure success in several ways:
  1. do your best, without any target

  2. set up the target and reach or over it

  3. do as you can and find someone else failure
In number (1), the measure of success depends on process evaluation: do we have done our best? Since it does not have a target or standard, it is difficult to say what is success or failure.

The number (2) is more precise measurement, especially when we have quantitative indicators.

The number (3) solely relies on our luck, which means not really our luck, but a matter of another people bad luck.

Now back to our program. Actually, in my standard and our partner plan, the project is not really on track. From 415 quantities planned, now in construction are 342. Around 50 of them are the project hallmark and suppose to be finished by Nov 20. Yet till now (Dec 11), we have not finished a single house. Then we plan for finishing at least 5 houses for inauguration by Dec 21. Personally, I doubt we can do it as rainy season really cause serious obstruction.

In term of quality, we also have problems. House construction through public participatory approach is not easy: the people lack of skill, knowledge, and experience in construction. We sit and learn together while our civil engineer tries their best transferring knowledge. The engineers, who also construction supervisor, have to give advice to owner, who responsible to build it.

Unfortunately, combination of lack of skills, ignorant, and needs (the owner want house and it must be ready soon), induce the owner to order workers to build as fast as possible and take the house as it is. In their head (owner & worker) it is okay, since in the past that is how they build house.

However in term of engineering standard, such as earthquake resistant, the building is not good enough. It could be the source of the danger for the resident, since earthquake regularly happen and may destroy it.

In spite all the problems and weaknesses, we are success. The success comes from another NGO projects failure and they cannot delivery people expectation, even the lowest expectation.

Well, an ironic rule in the land of confusion: another people failure is our success.

Note:
I also suspect that some of the villagers refuse to accept Fail NGO house because they are jealous, seeing the neighbor village house is permanent and larger. At the same time, fact also indicates the Fail NGO is not able to delivery its promise, since Fail NGO has approach NICE NGO (our partner) to take over the house construction.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Thanks for your generous donation

My friend Hendra Harahap just donate again to Bustanul Aitam orphanage (see also my note on the orphanage, in Indonesian), in my hometown Ulim-Pidie. This reminds me to thanks all community and my friends who generously support the orphanage:
  1. villagers in Ulim who continually provide basic needs (rice donation and school fee)

  2. Hendra Harahap (Indonesia)

  3. Sister Zaynab Al Fatah (Australia), editor of Victory News Magazine

  4. Leela Young & Sam Stephen Stake (USA)

  5. workers of PT Indo Pacific Sheraton (Indonesia)

  6. Nahdatul Ulama by Beny Sya’af

  7. Hari Kusdaryanto (Indonesia)
With all your support we can do much better for these kids: better foods, living place, and school.

Actually I plan to create a blog for the orphanage, but I do not have spare time yet. I try my best to do it soon.

To thou who want to donate for the orphan in Ulim, you can transfer the funds to:
Bank BNI – Sigli Branch,
Account Number: 61093541
On behalf of: Ilyas IB/ Yayasan Bustanul Aitam
Swift Code: BNINIDJA

If you pass the area and want to visit the orphanage, the address and contact:
Yayasan Bustanul Aitam,
Jl Meunasah Krueng Keude Ulim
Jl Banda Aceh Medan KM 163, Aceh
Phone: +62-(0)644-545057
Mobile: +62-(0)8566162033

For more information, you can reach me by email or Yahoo Messenger rpidie.

almost a year after

some people lucky,
for instantly die and out of this ruin land,
other less lucky,
waiting to die,
while others running around to find their beloved one.

many just have a bad luck,
to live on and witnesses the misery.

a month after,
my mother stand in front of her ruin house,
asking why?

some say to her,
you were lucky for not being there.

and I repeat the same hate;
the deaths were the lucky, we just had a bad luck

now almost a year after,
i stand in this land,
confuse,
fragile,
hopeless,
asking what the hell is going on
or shout, i want out

yet she keeps asking why?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

sekilas info

Rencananya sih mau update blog malam ini. Tapi nggak jadi. Abis cape berat. Kegiatan sejak sore kamis (1 des ’05) mulai dengan perjalanan ke banda aceh, lalu jum’at rapat, sabtu pergi-pulang sigli-banda aceh (ngantar bos UNDP), minggu nemenin nyokap lihat sisa rumah di Lampulo (Banda Aceh) dan cek-n-ricek rencana pembangunan dari sebuah LSM internasional, senin-selasa  masih di banda aceh untuk rapat monitoring dan bahas isu2 terkait. Demikian aja cerita ringkas kali ini. Nitezzz3