Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners

Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners
Widodo has pledged to bring reform to Indonesia

Ban appeals to Indonesia to stop death row executions

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United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has pleaded to Indonesia to stop the execution of prisoners on death row for drug crimes. AFP PHOTO

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person
The pope wrote that the principle of legitimate personal defense isn’t adequate justification to execute someone. Photograph: Zuma/Rex

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison   (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)
US President Barack Obama speaks as he tours the El Reno Federal Correctional Institution in El Reno, Oklahoma, July 16, 2015 (AFP Photo/Saul Loeb)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)
Woman who spent 23 years on US death row cleared (Photo: dpa)


"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A Greener Path to Fine Batik Fashion

Sylviana Hamdani looks at efforts to adopt batik production methods that are better for the planet

Jakarta Globe, Sylviana Hamdani, July 9, 2013

A model shows off a natural-dye design
as part of the ‘Clean Batik Initiative,’ a
 collaboration between fashion designers
 and textile makers. (Photo courtesy of
Batik is synonymous with Indonesian elegance and is a source of national pride.

Acknowledged in 2009 by Unesco as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, Indonesian batik is seen everywhere — boardrooms, glamorous parties and even malls.

But unfortunately, batik production is not very environmentally friendly. Batik home industries usually operate with excessive use of water, wax and chemicals that can harm people and the natural environment in the long run.

“I’ve seen a whole river turned red from the chemical waste that comes from batik-making,” said Frans, a designer at Batik Fractal, a batik fashion house based in Bandung.

The Clean Batik Initiative of the German-Indonesian Chamber of Industry and Commerce (Ekonid) was launched in 2010 to address the concern.

The four-year program, co-financed by the European Union under the Switch-Asia grant, aims to influence discussion on Indonesian batik by introducing sustainable production and consumption.

From 2010 to 2012, CBI programs focused on sustainable production. Through workshops, seminars and training sessions, the CBI team encouraged small batik makers to produce their wares in more environmentally friendly ways.

CBI project coordinator Martin Krummeck said recently: “We’re proud to announce that this year we’ve successfully reached our target of assisting over 500 batik SME’s across six provinces in Indonesia.”

The small-to-medium enterprises receiving CBI coaching are in Yogyakarta, Cirebon (West Java), Pekalongan (Central Java), Sumenep (East Java), Makassar (South Sulawesi) and Tarakan (North Kalimantan).

CBI entered its final year in 2013 and, to mark this milestone, the CBI team invited five Indonesian designers — Carmanita, Caterina Hapsari, Frans, L e n ny Agustin and Musa Widyatmodjo — to cooperate with designated batik makers on a series of fashion mini-collections.

High fashion

The designs produced through the collaborations were recently the subject of a gala fashion show and exhibition.

Models show off natural-dye designs that
 are the fruits of the ‘Clean Batik Initiative,’
 a collaboration between fashion designers
 and textile makers. (Photo courtesy of
“EcoBatik Signature Collection,” saw the five designers present 42 outfits made from eco-friendly batiks.

Senior fashion designer Musa said EcoBatik was batik with “a beautiful story about the production process, natural dyes, natural forces like the sun and wind.”

Musa’s mini-collection, for men, was themed “Natural Society.” The collection consisted of men’s casual and formal batik shirts in dark, earthy colors. “I hope Indonesia will soon become a natural society with EcoBatik,” Musa said.

All the batik shirts shown were made of breathable natural fibers, such as linen and cotton and paired with tailored pants and Bermuda shorts.

Caterina’s green showcase was titled “Exotic Silhouette of Indonesia” and consisted of elegant evening gowns made of a combination of batik on silk, brocade and tulle.

“My designs are my personal interpretation of the cultural heritage, to combine the modern with the traditional,” Caterina said.

Batik Fractal presented a mini- collection inspired by the German Bauhaus movement of between 1919 and 1933 that combined crafts and fine art. The collection, designed with special software, consisted of casual and cocktail dresses made of a combination of batik on cotton and tweed, with elegant patterns of flowers and poison ivy.

“We’re very honored to be appointed as the youngest designer partner for this program,” Frans said. “With our participation in CBI, we hope to bring in younger customers to this natural and traditional fashion style and create a new market for it.”

Lenny wowed the audience with clothes very different from her usual vibrantly colored collections.

Themed “In the Woods,” Lenny’s collection featured men’s and women’s casual items in a subdued palette of pale green, brown, khaki and sky blue.

Despite the more subdued colors, Lenny’s batiks are endearing, patterned as they are with flowers and butterflies.

“It’s quite a challenge for me,” Lenny said. “Personally, I love very vibrant colors, while natural-dyed batiks have pale or dark colors. But surprisingly, my customers really love [the new collection].”

A founder of the Indonesia Batik Foundation (YBI), Carmanita presented a series of elegant batik evening dresses of silk and lace.

The senior designer has been involved with the Clean Batik Initiative from the start of the program in 2010.

She said that while she was already using natural-dye batiks in her collections, “the CBI program has got me more involved with the batik artisans.”

How it works

Models show off natural-dye designs that
 are the fruits of the ‘Clean Batik Initiative,’
 a collaboration between fashion designers

and textile makers. (Photo courtesy of
With the CBI team, Carmanita tutored batik artisans to use natural dyes for batik.

Secang (Caesalpinia sappan) bark and banana stem, for example, are combined for a dark ruby color, while belimbing wuluh (Averrhoa bilimbi) is used to produce a rich blue. Mahogany bark, meanwhile, is used for dark purple.

Carmanita encouraged the artisans to themselves grow the species they would use for natural dyeing and also recommended turning to local wet markets as well as nearby farms as a source of dye materials and as an alternative to harvesting the raw materials from the wild.

Batik Mayani is an SME batik-maker in Cirebon that has adopted these methods, including having its employees plant natural dye species in their backyards.

“We’ve tried and discovered new things in CBI programs,” Batik Mayani co-owner Gusak Tilaswangi said. “They’re all very exciting. And we’re very proud that our batiks are helping protect the natural environment.”

However, environmental awareness applies throughout the sustainable batik production process, not just to dyes.

Traditional batik is usually hand-stenciled by teams of women working in an open-air environment that is covered but lacks walls. Even during the day, high-powered lamps are used in these workshops to provide better illumination to the working artisans.

To conserve energy, CBI introduced simple and easy-to-make solar lamps made of water bottles, bleaching agent and tin plates.

With the tin plates set into the roof overhead, the bottles are filled with a bleach solution and inserted part-way into the plates so that the top part protrudes into the sunlight.

“During the day, these bottles transmit sunlight into the workshops,” explained Mohammad Iqbal, a CBI project officer. “Each bottle can output the equivalent of a 55-watt bulb.”

The kerosene stoves that batik artisans have traditionally used to melt wax for stenciling emit fumes that may cause nausea and, over the long run, more serious health consequences.

As such, CBI has introduced, as a replacement, small electric stoves that provide much cleaner energy and are also more cost-effective.

A small batik maker may spend some Rp 250,000 per month on kerosene but the outlay can be as little as Rp 20,000 with electric stoves.

“That’s 90 percent more efficient,” Iqbal said.

Finally, batik artisans usually rinse the wax-resist dyes from raw textiles by immersing them in massive pots of boiling water heated with firewood.

To minimize wood burned, the CBI program introduced a homemade blower that feeds fresh air to the fire.

“This blower decreases the amount of firewood used in the industry by 50 percent,” Iqbal said.

In fact, CBI’s own calculations show that, since 2012, the program has prevented over 1,100 tons of carbon dioxide from being emitted into the environment.

CBI has clearly benefited the environment and the batik home industries involved in its programs. The initiative has also catalyzed valuable collaboration between fashion designers and batik producers.

So, what’s next?

Through to mid-2014, the CBI team will focus on encouraging sustainable batik consumption by raising awareness about eco-friendly batik among local and international consumers.

The Indonesia and international tour of the “EcoBatik Signature Collection” has already kicked off and exhibitions are upcoming at the Singapore Gifts & Premiums Fair (this Wednesday to Friday) and the International Tourismus-Borse Berlin (March 2014).

The CBI team is also lobbying the national government to formulate policies that encourage SME’s to switch to more environmentally friendly ways of making batik.

“We’ve asked [Indonesia’s] minister of industry to establish an independent certification body to guarantee the authenticity of eco-friendly batiks for the customers,” Krummeck said.

The “EcoBatik Signature Collection” is also available at the outlets of the participating designers.

“CBI is a good project that has given us an option to produce batik and save the natural environment,” Carmanita said.

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