Archive for the ‘Reader dialogue’ Category

No more shocks

Posted: November 14, 2011 in Reader dialogue

Yes, we moved on but, despair not, the entire staff have taken up residence at Mata Pribadi, a monthly magazine coveing much the same crap we did here but, perhaps, a little edgier.

As the site continues to get 20-30 hits a day we have left it open, though all the articles can now be found on Mata Pribadi itself as well.

We had fun, we hope you did too …. Mbak Dewi, Mas Budi and all our stringers wish you a fond farewell – and me too, ED

In the matter of NottheJakarkta Post LLC (in liquidation) please be advised that a petition is before this court from the Administrators seeking approval of the sale of the business on a “current valuation” plus intangible asset basis to Mata Pribadi (Channel Islands) LLC . A summary of the final transaction is as follows.

The full sum payable by Mata Pribadi (Channel Islands) LLC has been lodged in an escrow account with this court pending approval of the petition from the Liquidators of NottheJakarkta Post LLC (in liquidation).

Any objections to the sale on the financial terms stated must be provided in writing, signed, addressed and with the Clerk to the Court at the following address on or before 7th September 2011.

Clerk to the Court

Kemang Commercial Court

Kemang Raya 239(b)

Jakarta Seletan

This Statutory Notice is also published , as required, in the Jakarta Posr, Jakarta Globe and Kompas.

Bapak Hj. Nury N. Hitachi, Clerk to the Court

NtJP in final curtain Shock!!

Posted: August 19, 2011 in Reader dialogue

If you have come here looking for the usual Friday Roundup then we have bad news.

After just 60 days in existence, the NottheJakartaPost is closing its doors and the staff are all moving on to pastures new.

A number of you have become rather fond of the NtJP  “family” and what they have produced and have been kind enough to tell us, thanks for that, it kept us going through the dark days!!

It is, they used to tell your Editor, though he seldom saw it in reality, good practice to review outcome against what was originally planned, and learn.

With a healthy Johnnie Walker Black Label and ice in hand, let me do just that, first of all by listing what the Editor originally had in mind as objectives, even though these are at significant variance with those published on the About Us  and FUQ pages.

Original Objectives 

  1. Exercise the Editor’s brain, not least because it was showing signs of healing over after 1 year of retirement,
  2. Give him a chance to express some creativity after 35 years locked up in one of the world’s largest bureaucracies,
  3. Have some fun himself, and
  4. Entertain and amuse others

We think we can truthfully say that all objectives have been met, most especially #3 and  hence the decision now to quit while we are ahead (for full-time golf – ED) and give those who corrupt, lie and steal and indeed those who choose to go nowhere without their Greek silver bracelet, and their ilk, a break. To those of you worried about the staff and a number of the characters you have come to love, I can share with you what happens to them;

Mas Budi marries Mbak Dewi, they have three gorgeous little girls and a boy to die for and they live happily  ever after in a small but pretty town house in Tebet.

Our Blok M stringer gets a one year contract with the Jakarta Globe to do exactly what he enjoyed doing for us, but for 50% more money.

Alex McLeish’s boat comes in with his appointment as Indonesian main distributor, for TaylorMade ™ receiving an advance large enough to allow him to get out of the jail in which we left him languishing and pay off all the Blok M bars to whom he was in significant debt.

Dewi Rahman, after a Facebook campaign “Pennies for Dewi’s Penis” launched by the “Lesbian, Gay and people who wake up in the morning not being quite sure” pressure group, finally gets the “cruelest cut of all” in Singapore and has now been officially registered by the FAB Pool League as a female player in time for the February 2012 start of season.

Former British Ambassador to Indonesia, Martin Alan Gobfull gets a knighthood in the 2012 Honours List for services to Diversity and Multiculturalism.

The Jakarta Inter League goes back to being what it really is, a bastion of privilege, what the Aussies term mate-hood and not a little healthy competition. And Tee Set wins the next league.

The Hashers and pool players of Jakarta moved on happily to a future untainted by DENSUS 88 raids and transvestites. Everest Bastards win the 2012 FAB League.

On a vaguely serious closing note, we hope that our short existence showed you, if nothing else, the dangers of uncritical reading of the media. Just because it’s got a witty by-line, typed nicely and got pretty pictures does NOT mean it’s true, far from it.

There are veritable legions of people out there making a very decent living making up shit for you to swallow that will advantage them, their employers or their own special interest group. Look cynically at everything, and follow the money!!

Thanks for your time, and apologies once again for the intrusion – ED

PS to the kind gentleman who subscribed to NtJP from West Java via the excellent WordPress only this morning, humble apologies.

PPS should you wish to take a trip down memory lane at any time then Mas Budi, as his last task is preparing a list of the 30 most popular stories, sorted on “popularity” defined for these purposes as number of page hits. The Editor will help further by marking what were truly the best or at least those for which we had tears in our eyes even as we wrote them.

We may moan sometimes, but we love you warts and all!

NtJP will be back tommorow

In the days before business models were called business models, giving things away was not considered a sensible business model. Now, however, your average venture capitalist would probably laugh if you proffered him a business plan which incorporated the curious concept of charging somebody for something. The last self-made Billionaire to make his money that way was probably Bill Gates and look what he is doing now, that’s right, giving all his money away.

Yep, all the serious money these days is being made by those dedicated to giving stuff away with the recent honour roll of the philanthropic Billionaires including Google, which you may have come across, Skype which you probably use to talk with your loved ones, Facebook of course (“We’re free and always will be”), Android , which is on more smart phones than Apple’s iOS and Linked-In the social network of choice for all those with a suit in their wardrobe and which was recently IPO-ed for Squillions.

So, in our relentless quest to advantage our readers, we have established a special focal point within our group that covers the Jakarta business scene.

We have charged her with keeping a very close eye on the movers and shakers looking to make a fortune by giving things away in the Big Durian. What follows is her first report.

Something that you may have come across being given away for free in the bars, hotel lobbies, schools and golf clubs of Jakarta is a magazine called Now! Jakarta.

We had a look at the July edition; we couldn’t find August, it may be a Ramadhan thing.


It’s free, yeahhh!!!!

Lovely glossy magazine that would truly not look out-of-place on your coffee table

Consistently good photographic work, they have a man with an eye for composition and who knows the difference between an ISO and his aperture.

Useful directory at the back of people, places and things in Jakarta. Worth the free cover price for that alone.

Buried amongst the adverts and advertorials are some decent  Jakarta stories including, this month, coverage of the Highland Games and the lucky man who won a Mercedes APV for a hole in one – using a 3 wood from 125 meters for God’s sake.

They have an iPhone App for it!!


Endless fawning pieces on malls, jewellery stores, condos and Balinese investment villa opportunities dressed up as journalism but which are clearly paid advertising puffs  and, in all likelihood, actually written by the advertiser themselves. There is a lack of distinction between where reporting ends and advertising begins that the News of the World couldn’t get away with, if it were still with us.

A strong consensus on funniest AND worse piece; it really had to be the “Fashion and Jewellery” item “Dressed for Success” featuring a couple of hotel managers and a “Senior Partner” at a “Wealth Manager” with their best Armani suits on,  flashing their cuffs and telling us their favourite Cologne. Favourite quote? – “I would never leave home without my Greek silver bracelet”. Who was it who said all publicity is GOOD publicity, WRONG!!!.  To add to the toxic conflict of interest cocktail, the Wealth Manager’s company had taken out a full-page advertisement in the middle of a “Special Supplement on Finance and Wealth Management”, written of course by the man who flashed his cuffs earlier (and not the one with the Greek bracelet fixation).

They charge $1.99 to download the magazine on to your iPad!! Who on earth is going to pay that for a magazine on their iPad that they can get for free at the hairdressers and put on their coffee table?  NottheJakartaPost would love to know how many downloads they had – we would guess about three, including the Editor’s Her Indoors.

So, way to go, should you buy shares in it? Well, erm, it is produced by a private company so you would have to await the IPO; we will bring you more in-depth coverage should it ever happen. We suggest in the interim that you keep your excess funds ready for next week’s floatation of “Not the Jakarta  Post LLC” a British Virgin Islands company with a Business Model which charges nothing for everything, even its iPad Edition.

Priced to sell at $1.99 a share at which level it has an infinitely negative P/E ratio. Having just checked the petty cash, we can also share with you that NtJP has Net Assets of 47,655 Roops. Sure fire winner, BUY.

And how was your journey into the office this morning? Out-of-date statistics suggest more than hour to travel really not very far, and up-to-date statistics would undoubtedly suggest longer. You do not need statistics of course to know that travel to work here is a complete pain in the ass and with around half of Indonesia’s 800,000 new cars this year headed for Greater Jakarta, it is not going to get better real soon. We will not share with you the number of motor bikes that will also be joining in the fun on the grounds that frightening readers is seldom good editorial policy.

Rizwan Alamsjah, a director of the Mitsubishi Motors distributor in Jakarta, was asked recently if motor manufacturers should take the blame for the appalling traffic jams and pollution that anybody who has spent more than a nano-second in the city is only too aware of.

Tuan Rizwan denied it – and he is right of course, they are no more responsible for the city’s traffic than the manufacturers of H-Bombs were responsible for Hiroshima, the makers of pharmaceutical grade arsenic for the death of Munir Talib Said or the purveyors of box cutters and plastic knives for the collapse of the New York World Trade Centre’s Twin Towers.

No, what caused all these desirable outcomes was policy, and the only thing that is going to get Jakarta out of its traffic mess is that self, same thing, POLICY.

Rather unfortunately, we have to tell you that there is NO policy, NO holistic plan, just a series of misguided knee jerk reactions largely designed to attract a little short-term political popularity such as 3 in 1, Busways, banning lorries from the inner city Jalan Tols, trains stopping at every station between here and Bogor and now the construction of a couple of flying roads to add to the chaos.

The latest whizzy idea from the Ministry of Whizz Bang Ideas will be unlikely to inspire you either; they are only going to let cars of a certain colour use the roads on any given day; make sure your office fleet is not kitted out in identical livery or you will be going to all those important meetings at the Ministry in a fucking Bajai. The only beneficiaries of this latest move are likely to be the Ketok Magic who will be doing a roaring trade in paint jobs and of course your usual rent-seeking uniformed guardians of the law who will of course be taking a great interest in the colour of your car.

When your Editor first called the Big Durian home, Bangkok was much worse traffic wise than Jakarta and now, 22 years later and with approximately equal growth in population for each city, the reverse is true. How did that happen, I hear you ask? Excellent question, well done that boy.

Sigh ......

The answer is that Bangkok invested in public transport; in spades, MRT, proper buses, trains and integrated timetables for the whole lot. Jakarta’s answer in the meanwhile came in the shape of the concrete stumps to be found to this day around Senayan – and last week’s proud announcement that 20 new Metro Minis had been acquired to replace 20 old ones.The only city in the world with a worse track record in responding to 21st century needs is probably Edinburgh.

Have a great journey home this evening; just try not to think about what the same journey will take you in 18 months time.

Friday Roundup #3

Posted: August 12, 2011 in Reader dialogue

August is not generally a wild month for news globally, however, in this as with many other things, Jakarta is different and the big stories just, er, keep on coming.

Maybe not ....

On Monday, and having become a martyr for press freedom with his incarceration in Jakarta’s LP Cipinang, the Editor managed to smuggle out a harrowing and tear provoking account of his first days of suffering there in a post that also saw the invariably plebian NtJP‘s first ever inclusion of poetry. Don’t worry, you haven’t wandered into the wrong organ, it won’t happen again.

With the Deputy Editor in harness, His Omnipotence‘s interest in the Bangka Island nuclear bomb power facility came up once again on Tuesday, please visit as it makes His Omnipotence very happy.

With the UK in flames, Pak Polisi was taking no chances on Wednesday night and pretty much “did an Assad” on expat rich Kemang, where it was possible to shake hands with up to 2,000 of Pak Polisi’s finest without moving off Jl. Bangka Raya. Data emerging from the Sceptered Isle indicates that 90% of the thousands already arrested there were 18 and under, not the sort of demographic to be found in the Big Durian’s expat community, though Pak Polisi might be well advised to keep an eye on the playing fields of JIS and BIS. The word on the street has it, however, that their students are all too spaced out to riot most of the time and too privileged to acquire new trainers other than with their Mastercards, so looks like we are safe until the Rakyat rises up.

Finally, late last evening, we brought the exclusive inside story on the discovery and arrest of fugitive from justice, Paddy O’Finnion, former Treasurer of Golfers of Democracy (GOD), in Cartagena, Colombia. That the “invisible hand” of the NtJP was able play a full part is a source of great pride to us here.

As ever it seems the entire staff, with the exception of Mbak Dewi, will be taking advantage of the many fine golf courses offered by the city that really never sleeps. Mbak Dewi will instead be going to the Mal and her favourite salon. We hope that you too get to do what you enjoy, whatever it is and so long as it’s legal.

Sampai Monday, ED