Sunday, August 26, 2007

Old Lady

Village near Semerang. Taken at Agus and Dian's house - thanks to Andy for bringing me along!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Closet Atheist?

Mother Theresa, a closet atheist?

Doesn't sound too far off how I feel, except, I accept how I feel and reckon atheism is quite a positive outlook on life!

Cigarettes, Alcohol and Jesus

A Malaysian news paper was shut down for printing a cartoon which showed Jesus smoking and drinking beer.

As ever, the Malaysian establishment just makes itself look silly. Christians weren't actually responsible for getting the paper shutdown, a Tamil political party was -- cos it had been on the receiving end of a lot of flack from the paper.

Interestingly the bible has this to say about the matter,

Philippians 1:18. What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed and in this I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice.

I reckon Jesus wouldn't have taken himself too seriously, and would have enjoyed a cigarette and a pint of beer now and again.

A Christian, or other admirer of Jesus, who concluded that He DID drink beer honors His essential humanity, and the theological truth that He was like us in every way except for our sinfulness.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Australian Immigration

Australia is hoping to attract British people to migrate there.

At least once a year Australia organises a huge exhibition in Dublin to attract more people to go over there. They also offer working visas to Irish youngsters for a year or two.

Question: do they go to the same lengths to attract Indonesian people to work in Australia? if not, why not?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Islamic Summer of Love

100,000 have met in Jakarta to discuss the creation of an Islamic caliphate - an international state based on Muslim-on-Muslim love. By all accounts, it was the Naughties answer to Woodstock and the Summer of Love.

Ignoring all the "liberal" reasons why Sharia states aren't good ideas, let's focus on some rather more obvious impracticalities.

Muslims are human (obvious I know, but too often it can be forgotten!).

How long did it take for the Acehnese to get some TLC from their *Muslim* bosom buddies in Sumatra, Sulawesi and Java? Where was all the passion for Indonesian on Malay action in the '60s? Where are the saucy Shia-Kurd-Sunni orgies of love? Oh that's right, that sauce isn't even of the ketchup type!

100,000 in the Bung Karno Stadium? Islamic Summer of Love? Pass me an E.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Smoking CSR

PR people are fiendishly clever. Most of what they do is now called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). It's a fluffier, friendlier type of PR. People are mostly cynical about PR, but are at worst confused when confronted with CSR (sukses!).

Generally I don't care for motives when individuals, countries or companies do genuine good. If a company gets some good PR through helping a community out everyone wins.

What I do care about, is when a company like Sampoerna (large Indonesian cigarette maker) spends millions on high profile CSR on the one hand, but on the other, is the biggest killer of Indonesians bar none.

Does Sampoerna support lung cancer research or cigarette education? Of course not, it wants to bury its wrongs and its victims in glitzy PR.

I wonder how much it would cost to hire a PR firm on a retainer basis to make the victims of Sampoerna higher profile? What a worthwhile pro bono CSR project that would be! What about it chaps? Use your skillz to help the little guys!