Friday, April 04, 2008

Ask Mr. Indonesian Man: Government Creativity

Q: Isn't it an oxymoron?
A: Let's not discuss semantics.

Q: Okay, then. Does it even exist?
A: Uhm, let's not discuss philosophy.

Q: What can we discuss then? Oh, hell, just gimme an example.
A: Well, the most recent one is our government solution to promote tourism in Kota Batu, East Java.

Q: What did they do?
A: They're going to issue a law which states that every masseuse has to wear a pair of chastity locks. (Caution: link leads to page in Indonesian.) One for the skirt, and the other for the undies. 

Q: Hahaha! Is this one of those instances of Indonesian humor?
A: No. I'm serious. You can see the skirt one from this Tribun Jabar documentation photo. (No underwear version. It's a family newspaper after all.)

Q: ... ... ...
A: Your lack of response is reassuring.

Q: And what does that have to do with tourism?
A: Since Kota Batu is a popular destination--

Q: Where is it again?
A: It's a VERY popular destination.

Q: Yeah? Is it somewhere in Bali?
A: Shut up. In short, the city needs to maintain a positive image. And that means, no sexual favors or harrassment in massage parlors.

Q: Can it be called harrassment when money is exchanged for service?
A: No semantic discussion!

Q: I'll rephrase it, then. So why not ban the business altogether?

A: I'll quote the Head of the Satpol PP (rough translation: Discipline Enforcer Police Unit), Imam Suryono, "Since Kota Batu is a tourism city, we can't ban this business. What can our policy do is protecting it from illegitimate business involving sexual favors."  

Q: Wait, wait. So basically, he's saying they can't ban the business because it is one of the main attractions of the city?
A: I don't think--

Q: And then, instead of people paying to get sexual favors, now instead people are paying to play Master Lockpick?

A: Look--

Q: It's not exactly stopping them, you know? Why not put a lock in their mouths as well, then?
A: No philosophy discussion!

Q: It is NOT a philosophy discussion, you dimwit. It's a matter of common sense.
A: What about it?

Q: I find it lacking.
A: Welcome to Indonesia.


 Update: The Jakartan government find the idea so brilliant, they intend to adopt it as well. (Link still leads to an article in Indonesian.)

Update Update: Both government still haven't realized that there's such thing called a "masseur."


Thanks to Jo and a few other tourism -news enthusiasts.


Therry said...

As what I've read from some KasKusers' responses:

There are plenty of ways to get to Rome


What if they need to do their toilet business??? (this one I admit really got me thinking - if you're busting to have a dump, and it's reaaaally on the edge, would you even have time to go ask for the key to unlock your undies, get to the toilet, find out you have to queue, and by the time you finally get an empty cubicle, you've already done enough damage in your pants).

pjbali said...

Its not just creative its pure genuis. Given the propensities of bureaucracies to expand, (parkinsons law?) oportunities for job creation will mushroom. After all first there will have to be a study on the best way to implement the new rule. Then comes the procurement and bidding phase. I'm sure some sort of licensing will have to take place, maybe even a national registry for keys and stuff. And finally there will have to be inspectors to make sure the new rules being followed to the letter.

BTW Who are the keepers of the keys?

Therry said...

Probably the "mami"? Ooooh I just had this twisted idea that a regular customer would somehow get a copy, in a sort of kinky way, and when they've booked their massage session, they'll just swing the keys at them masseuse and say, "Now come on darl, let's take THOSE off shall we?"

rimafauzi said...

seriously? this is what's happening?

what is to become of my beloved country???

gosh, what a great country it is after Suharto's New Order's downfall.

Now is the era of the Newer Order with its democracy and reformation.
This, UU ITE and the blocking of several major sites are few of the results of our new democratized era..
Hidup Indonesia!!! (sudah seperti negara komunis saja)

isman said...

Ah, you're a Kaskuser, Therry? No wonder you're quick to know what's happening on the world (wide web).

My coworker's a Kaskuser as well. Main sources of information. (Especially involving government *cough* creativity).

Yes, the masseuses may as well wear t-shirts that say, "I'm supposed to be a responsible adult, but I have to ask permission to pee."


"And finally there will have to be inspectors to make sure the new rules being followed to the letter. "

These are the guys who can wear shirts that say, "I check underwears for a living."

isman said...

It could be worse, Therry. They might reenact a scene from Men in Tights by shouting, "Summon the Locksmiiiiiith!"

isman said...

Don't worry, rimafauzi. It's still the same country. And the government still have no clue.

It's like what Will Rogers said, "There’s no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government working for you."

Therry said...

I read Kaskus bu seldom post anything :P


Wow that Will Rogers quote was so, so true!

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