today i was preparing an information slide on political parties in indonesia. my first impulse of course was to grab all the logos of the political parties, do a short write-up about them and place them inside a nice template.

then i thought about it. isn't it the case that people like to be shown cute graphical ways to analyse data? For example, i have seen representations where ideologies of political parties are placed on a spectrum from left to right, or even quadrants, based on their economic/ideological inclinations.

i agree it's a quick way to convey ideas, and probably one that people would appreciate. it's the kind of quick classification people give in lectures that helps them capture the gist.

i look at the 24 major parties, of which i have picked 6 representative ones which are in the top 10 in the legislative elections. wanting to representing them from left to right, by impression, ok maybe golkar right, pdi-p left, but these are so vague and indonesian politics nowadays is so un-ideological anyway (not a bad thing, for some parties, this means pragmatic, centrist policies). i could rate them along 3 axes: economic conservatism, moral/religious conservatism, political/foreign policy conservatism? but labels like conservative are meaningless in a country like indonesia, because conservative to what? people defending pancasila are conservative to the 1945 constitution, golkar may want to preserve the "new order" priority on economic development. and is i put PKS and PPP or even PKB on the islamic scale of things, people will start likening them to Hamas when they don't really advocate an Islamic state and are more parties running on anti-corruption, anti-pornography etc

since my own voice will not be heard and only my opinion left on paper, it is best to be reasonably nuanced and complete. in a lecture, i can back up my visual aids, but here, i fear misunderstanding.

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