Bali Beer Ban Looms – Why Pander to Intolerance?


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Last week I cheered Jakarta Governor Ahok’s stand against the fanatics who want to ban beer from all those handy little mini-markets that seem to sprout on every other corner of the capital.

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ahok Ahok

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Alas, I spoke to soon. His stand, for sanity and free choice, has been over-ruled by the national government, which, in a move which makes no sense at all, is set to enforce a blanket-ban, NATIONWIDE!

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Indonesia to Outlaw Sale of Alcohol at Minimarkets and Convenience Stores Effective April 16, 2015.

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Rachmat Gobel

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This antedeluvian decree emerges from the office of one of President Jokowi’s team, Rachmat Gobel, who’s a big business tycoon himself, so ought to have some grasp of the modern world.

But it’s not just his whim – it’s endorsed both by parliament and government, heedless of the inconvenience and annoyance it will cause among the many tourists from Australia (and elsewhere) who like to buy a few bottles to drink on the beach or on their hotel balconies in Bali.

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  • And all the Indonesians and foreign residents, like me, who enjoy sitting in their front- or back-yards with a six-pack of a weekend arvo. No more ten minute walk for supplies – instead, a lengthy trip to a distant hypermarket. 

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  • bintang
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  • No wonder that Tutum Rahanta, vice-chairman of the Indonesian Retail Association (Aprindo), said he regretted the Minister’s decision..

“These retail outlets sell alcoholic beverages to meet the needs of foreign tourists,” said Tatum.  http://www.balidiscovery.com

In fact, the sale of these needful products was already hedged around with all kinds of restrictions, some sensible, others less so.

fpibatam Sectarian sticky-beaks disrupt normal folks’ fun

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But this outright verbot will only please the white-shirt gangsters who have long hit the headlines here for their vigilante vandalism against anywhere that offers simple pleasures like a cold Bintang on a sultry evening.

Jackboot

And those intolerant uptights will only be happy when total prohibition is imposed.

April 16th  – a dark day for Indonesia.