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Ruminations. Reflections. Refractions. Code.

Dec 22, 2021 - General

Smear Campaigns Against Reason and Science

I wish to discuss this article on Fauci’s change of behaviour over time, but my take is less so about Fauci specifically, and more about the active shutdown of a dissenting, but quite reasonable approach to the handling of the pandemic, one opposed to locking down populations.

Before quoting important points from the article, a preamble:

Rather dramatic title aside, this is a quite readable article about the very deliberate smear campaign on scientists that proposed alternative approaches to harsh lockdowns. The signatories of the Great Barrington Declaration (GBD) (site, twitter), proposed what they called Focused Protection.

From the main GBD page, I quote here the credentials of the original signatories:

Dr. Martin Kulldorff, professor of medicine at Harvard University, a biostatistician, and epidemiologist with expertise in detecting and monitoring infectious disease outbreaks and vaccine safety evaluations.

Dr. Sunetra Gupta, professor at Oxford University, an epidemiologist with expertise in immunology, vaccine development, and mathematical modeling of infectious diseases.

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, professor at Stanford University Medical School, a physician, epidemiologist, health economist, and public health policy expert focusing on infectious diseases and vulnerable populations.

Readers can make up their own minds if these are people you would consider unqualified to propose a view. Certainly, in stark contrast to the Mass Media Doomsday Epidemiologists.

Focused Protection is not saying do nothing and let the virus rip. It was based on a simple observation based on available data that has remained consistent to this day: The virus affects advanced age groups more severely. It is deadly to this age group, not so much to the others, where the hospital system should cope as per normal (let us note that for the ongoing years before the pandemic, VIC Australia’s nurses have constantly been crying for help).

So instead of locking down society as a whole, we focus our attention on those most affected.

Conceptually, this is not rocket science. There is literally nothing controversial about this approach. It is about picking the low-hanging fruit.

But these scientists with very relevant experience have been labeled as “fringe”. As a tangential point, most innovations happen at the fringes, not the mainstream. The mainstream are followers, the fringes create.

The lockdown approach, of which I am in many ways a beneficiary — I have gotten to spend time home, work has been accommodating —Thank God, nothing else can be said — but more generally has been terrible for kids studying, and for the overall quality of life for most people. I am capable of living as a hermit (mostly!), but this is not how most people live.

We are at three shots of these vaccines, with 90+% of the population vaccinated in VIC, and yet there seems to be no end to these draconian measures, they are put in place, taken away, and put in place again. There is a constant looming fear of them coming back each time they are taken away.

These measures have favoured those of us who can work from home, but have decimated many other smaller businesses. They have truly favoured those of us more privileged, objectively speaking.

At 90% of the population vaccinated, you can no longer, in all honesty, blame those who refuse to take the vaccines for this mess. The numbers simply no longer allow this view as being reasonable in any form whatsoever. I am double-vaccinated, because of the need to travel, not because I actually want to be vaccinated by experimental tech. I have never bothered with the flu shots, relying instead on basic health measures such as eating well, exercising, breath control, and keeping a spiritual-mental-emotional balance. Those who compare the flu shots to the Covid shots seem to miss the point that flu shots are not mandated.

At this point in time, we may disagree on the efficacy of the vaccines, their experimental nature, and so on, but all that aside, if you still do not see the overall negative social impact of lockdowns, I am afraid you are in dangerous denial.

Now, on to the quotes from the article and some related commentary, all emphasis (indicated in bold text) is mine:

The document, on the one hand, said nothing controversial. The right way to deal with this pandemic, it said, was to focus on those who could face severe outcomes from disease — a very plain point and nothing new. There was nothing to be gained by locking down the whole of society because of a pathogen with such a huge differential in its demographic impact.

The virus does not affect all equally, therefore it does not make sense to restrict all equally.

The hope of the Declaration was simply that journalists would pay attention to a different point of view and a debate would begin on the unprecedented experiment in lockdowns. Perhaps science could prevail, even in this climate.

Many journalists today goad governments to execute lockdowns and mandate this and that by featuring doomsday prophets like MacIntyre and McClaws, to sell their news and ads, but wow, they have screwed us over big time when it comes to actual public health.

Mostly this declaration was intended as an educational effort. But the authors were being called vicious names and treated like heretics that should be burned. There certainly was no civil debate; quite the contrary.


It was all quite shocking given that the Declaration was a statement concerning what almost everyone in these professional circles believed earlier in the year. They were merely stating the consensus based on science and experience. Nothing more. Even on March 2, 2020, 850 scientists signed a letter to the White House warning against lockdowns, closures, and travel restrictions. It was sponsored by Yale University. Today it reads nearly like a first draft of the Great Barrington Declaration. Indeed on that same day, Fauci wrote to a Washington Post reporter: “The epidemic will gradually decline and stop on its own without a vaccine.”

Note the change in Fauci’s behaviour today. He is among those who has actively stopped any further discourse on a matter affecting the world’s population.

Already by the summer, it was very clear that the lockdowns had not achieved what they were supposed to achieve. Two weeks had stretched into many months, and the data on cases and deaths were uncorrelated with the “mitigation measures” that had been imposed on the country and the world. Meanwhile, millions had missed cancer screenings, schools and churches had been shut, public health was in a state of crisis, and small businesses and communities were fighting to stay alive.”

There is no way to argue against the last sentence, this is reality.

While in Jakarta, I have visited otherwise bustling shopping centres to see hundreds of small shops (organised in rented-out lots) just closed. There’s excessive fear such that most people are unwilling to visit hospitals to get treatment, or are simply put on a lower priority if they are not Covid patients.

From near first-hand experience of a close family member, I know public hospitals are incentivised through government funding to reclassify ailments as Covid cases. They go as far as profit-sharing with the patients: if a patient signs a declaration form admitting to being a Covid patient, then they get a sum of money, and even more in the event of death. This is because these hospitals are paid a certain sum of money for every Covid patient, support money from the government.

This in turn clearly messes up the Covid numbers. And I am willing to wager that this practice is by no means unique to one or two countries. Practically, every country having a similar economic and geopolitical profile will suffer from the same problem. Speaking of numbers like death rates: why is there no control group for these, for example, why not also compare these to endemics such as influenza? And how is it that influenza has been so deemphasised during this period. Did the influenza virii decide to take a holiday?

In the interim, we have gone on to fire nurses who refuse to be vaccinated because they are aware of what goes on in the field. Then we complain that the health system is overloaded.

Recently, our Illustrious Leaders (sarcasm) decided to make VIC a hub of mRNA tech, specifically Moderna’s vision of mRNA — you would think that in this crisis, we would rather deploy spending to boosting (a much better use of the word here) our health system’s capacity.

Moving on.

The author of the initial email is Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health. The recipients were Anthony Fauci and H. Clifford Lane, NIAID Deputy Director for Clinical Research and Special Projects. The email calls for a “published take down” of the GBD that is both “quick and devastating.”

See the article for the email itself, in full-battle mode. No room for discussion or debate, kill all of it.

The next day, Fauci struck again with an article from the pro-lockdown leftist newspaper The Nation. It’s a demoralizing reference simply because the public was led to believe that between his endless TV interviews, Fauci was scouring “the science” to find out more about SARS-CoV-2, not googling and landing on highly politicized and ideological webzines. What we find in these emails are highly political people who are obsessed not with science but with messaging and popular influences on the public mind.

THE SCIENCE, how I loathe this politician-hackneyed phrase.

What do we learn from these emails? The attacks on tens of thousands of medical professionals and scientists were indeed encouraged from the top. The basis for the attacks were not scientific articles. They were heavily political popular pieces. This adds serious weight to the impression we all had at the time, which was that this was not really about science but about something far more insidious.

And further down:

For that matter, Anthony Fauci himself warned against lockdowns in January and February, favoring instead normal methods of mitigation.

What changed? Further into the pandemic, more is learned about the disease, more systems are in place to handle extreme cases of illness… all in all, we should get less panicked with time, not more.

I will end with the article’s ending words:

This war on dissent against lockdowns is not only a scandal of our times. The lockdowns and now the mandates have fundamentally transformed society and its relationship to government, technology, media, and much more. The emergency continues. Protests have arisen the world over but they are hardly even covered by the media. We seem ever more to be on the precipice of total disaster, one that will be difficult to reverse. It is urgent that we know who did this, as well as how and why, and take steps to stop it before more damage is done and then becomes permanent.

Dec 15, 2021 - General

Response to the Spanish Flu in 1918

Today I came across from a twitter contact: Please note this is a .gov domain — an official US Government site. Unless it has been hacked, it is legitimate.

On the page, search for:

“Directive from Washington, D.C., regarding treatment and procedures. September 26, 1918, Naval Districts and Shore Establishments.”

No direct link to the artifact, sadly.

I have included the image at the end of this post, but by all means, verify.

So this was a scary period, no doubt. Medicine and healthcare were not nearly as advanced. But observe the language: Calm, measured, taking natural immunity into account.

Here are some quotes from it:

Protect yourself from infection, keep well, and do not get hysterical over the epidemic.
You can do much to lessen the danger to yourself by keeping in good physical condition.

Nearly each time I have gotten sick, it has started by just not getting enough sleep.

Eat simple, nourishing food and drink plenty of water. Avoid constipation.

Because constipation slows down the release of toxins from the body quite considerably.

A day in bed at the very beginning may also save you from serious consequences later on.

These remain true as ever; sleep, exercise, and diet go a long way towards keeping and improving health. At times, I have found it beneficial to just force myself, no matter how sick, to move a bit. Certainly, measure your own ability on how much to move.

And the best one:

Fight the disease rationally and do not become unduly alarmed.

It is a far cry from the fearmongering we see in this pandemic.

I am not saying the disease is not real, but the fearmongering far outweighs what the disease is capable of. Additionally, virii are creatures existing possibly from the start of time. Just like us, they evolve and adapt (read: mutate into variants), and everything remains in balance.

If the doomsday epidemiologists had been right, we would have bodies dropping in the street by now.

Wake up. Please.

US gov spanish flu letter

Oct 31, 2021 - General

Healing from Respiratory Problems (Apparently Covid-19 Induced)


At its core, this post is about two things:

  1. My road to recovery from getting, apparently, Covid-19.
  2. My spiritual attitude towards it all.

For both cases, I hope to share tips and ideas and observations.

Much as I tried, I could not write about point (1) without talking about point (2). They are inseparable to me.

I write this:

  1. To remind myself of the love provided to me by my parents, my teachers, my family, direct and extended.
  2. So that it might prove useful to some. Perhaps even kindle a stronger spirit in this pandemic.

I hesitated writing this for some weeks now, but it feels like I must, albeit with a few very strong disclaimers, not because I don’t believe in what I have to say, but because I have a life with more important things to do.

I also have to fully accept that some of those who I know well, on seeing this side of me, may distance themselves from me (“Geez, who knew he was such a spiritual nut!“, “Oh.. I suspected it, but whoa…”). This would be the saddest impact of this post, however, during these times, we need clarity on who we really are at our core, that is our source of strength. We must connect strongly with our values, and the Source of those values.

Some might want to argue with me about my beliefs, their veracity, and validity. I have neither the taste, nor the intellect for such arguments. Accept or reject my ideas, it does not matter to me.


  1. I am not a doctor, or a medical practitioner of any sort. Take all this at your own peril, and read this section well.
  2. I am not providing medical advice, merely sharing experiences.
  3. If any mention of God, of spirituality makes you sick, I’d rather you not get sick further, so stop reading now. It is better we just go grab coffee, far more productive (you are paying, though)!
  4. Three disclaimer points feel too short. Here’s a fourth filler point, taking up space with no substance, the very definition of a filler. Thanks for reading.

Deep Acknowledgements

Primarily, my Dad took the most care of me during this time, acting much more diligently than even professional nurses might. I owe my speedy recovery to him, to his love and care.

My Mom, while also being sick, thankfully with less severity, took care of me plenty.

The Founder of the Bandung Karate Club (BKC), Ytc Kang Iwa Rahadian Arsanata, acted as my Spiritual Cornerstone, reminding me of who I am, to understand the nature of dis-ease, of having one’s comprehension and resolve tested by God.

I deliberately kept quiet about my sickness among most of my teachers and friends, but when they eventually heard of it, all energised me with their words, while providing useful suggestions. Ytk Kang Ray, my second main instructor after Ytk Kang Endar took the time to come to visit me and share his findings about this disease, and inducing sneezing.

The Role Of Intermediaries

A central spiritual teaching is God, while Almighty, nevertheless works through intermediaries or mediums, including humans, for example, our parents and our teachers and our friends. But, only if there is a certain willingness and tendency of the human being worked through. That is to say, while God Wills, this in no way whatsoever diminishes the medium’s role — rather it enhances it.

This seems like such a slippery teaching that many do not get. I obtained this through BKC’s Founder Kang Iwa.

Why use mediums? Well, why bother with the creations at all if they are not to be made use of!

As to why bother creating at all? That’s a question to ask God directly. But one might ask oneself the same thing. Why write? Why paint and draw? Why read literature and poetry? Why work? Why create anything at all?

Getting Sick

Some time around late June to July 2021, I got sick:

  1. It started with a bad cold. My mistake was not sleeping enough when the cold happened, and that further pushed down my immunity.
  2. It evolved into breathing difficulties, and general fatigue (I wasn’t able to stand for very long before needing a break to rest). Interestingly, there were no further colds or sneezing during this stage.
  3. Eventually got a positive PCR test for Covid-19 at a private hospital. This was before any vaccination.

Overall, I felt pretty bad for a couple of weeks, but thankfully began to recover in the third week. Felt better than before (I kid you not) in week 6 or 7.

One teaching I adhere to is that at times, falling ill is simply God’s Will, it forces us to slow down, to evaluate behaviour, to rest up.

However, regardless of God’s Will, it is prudent to always also evaluate one’s behaviour. Far more difficulties in life are linked to human behaviour than anything God Wills.

The Effect of Psychology On Immunity

When I got my test results, I was already having trouble breathing, things were in full effect really, and at the hospital, my Dad asked the doctor if I could be given oxygen. Doctor says, based on my oxymeter reading of 90%, they had to prioritise the oxygen for other patients, that I was not sick enough to receive oxygen. Awesome. I think.

However, I have a pretty strong rebellious nature when it comes to most medical practitioners (I can count good doctors I have met with fingers in one hand), and generally anyone who tries to push my spirits down, so this statement rather ignited a stronger fire to get well soon.

I attribute this fire to my Karate training at the BKC. While I am certain there are innate factors that make me this way, these have been kindled and trained at the BKC.

Our mental state is important, because let’s consider basic Human Psychology and Immune Systems 101:

Any decent medical practitioner knows that patients need to be kept in good spirits, as that helps with the immune system. They are aware that medicines work with the body to heal.

With Covid, it has been the complete opposite. It’s as if the entire system has been set-up to fearmonger. The impact of such deliberate fearmongering on the psyche is hard to measure, but extremely real.

It’s utterly crazy that all mention of a good rest, a healthy diet, exercise, anything to naturally boost the immune system has been deemphasised to being practically non-existent in discussions.

First we had masks, then the vaccines came, and masks became a non-alternative. Nothing is clear or consistent in the communications about this disease.

Medication Approach: Diagnosis, Medicines, Diet

After getting my positive test (how twisted the word ‘positive’ is here), the doctor in charge simply gave us a Covid Pack of standard medication. There was no personalised treatment. It included around 5 or 6 tablets. Most were vitamins, but two in particular bugged me:

  1. An anti-viral drug. Interesting, so if this drug existed, why not make people aware of it? And if it does not work all that well, then why bother with the risk of side effects?
  2. Antibiotics. With no personalised treatment, there were no guidelines on how long the antibiotics should be taken for, should they be replenished, etc. No thanks, stupid as I am, I have still heard of the superbugs! (And if you don’t believe that theory, then you can also disbelieve the evolutionary ability of creatures to adapt.)

So, I really could not get myself to take either, for better or for worse.

I believe rather strongly, having experienced this many times in prior circumstances, that you are your own best diagnostic tool, that you can learn to read your body and mind better than any doctor in a vast majority of cases. Some things may be beyond you, or they may just require you to get help, because getting help will widen your perspective, your friends, etc. Even if you do rely on doctors, it’s still important to understand exactly what is on offer.

But this Covid situation is messy, so this self-awareness skill is what I went back to. I looked into my state symptom by symptom:

  1. Coughs: Figure out cough medicine. Dry or phlegmy? Okay, somewhat dry, need to get the phlegm out, a proxy to get junk out of your body. Asked Dad to describe these symptoms at the pharmacy, they suggested a medicine branded Lasal, with Salbutamol, which from reading also helps with asthma, ya know, a very common disease associated with breathing difficulty. Next, the medical pack also had antibiotics — went with honey. It may not be the strongest antibiotic agent, but it’s the safest I can think of and has a bunch of other health benefits.
  2. Constipation: Yoghurt, plenty of it. But I didn’t have enough I think, should have been more aggressive with this.
  3. Immunity Boosting: Vitamin C, Lemon Juice (with honey, yum!). Fruits and vegetables in general.

I had a total loss of appetite, my Dad forced me on a diet of:

  • Lightly boiled eggs.
  • Apples, oranges, and pears.

Repeated a few times a day, often annoying me by waking me up in the middle of the night to eat too. It was not fun during those 2-3 intensive days.

I did not think of, say, oats with honey at the time, but it would have been a great addition that is easy to digest, healthy, and helpful with bowels, too.

We also got dextrose powder (a product called Gluco-VD, that has been around for ages, sourced from grapes), to mix with water, as a convenient way of boosting my strength while taking in liquids, a way to fight the fatigue.

Finally, I also had more regular food as my appetite returned.

My recovery accelerated once I managed to get better bowel movement. This, interestingly, happened after having some spicy seafood tom yum, the famous Thai dish rich in proteins, herbs, and spices, many of which have medicinal benefits.

Tom yum’s ingredients are also very much invigorating, forcing you to break sweat. This was another interesting thing I noticed, I did not sweat much at all, despite the hot Jakarta weather, so the sweat glands may also be affected by this disease. Bowel movement, sweating, these are all exit points for impurities in the body.

When I started to recover, I was itching all over, it turns out, I began to sweat slowly, and the skin pores had been blocked for some time, causing the itching sensation.

I also began to sneeze, yet another way to expel impurities from the lungs.

Below are some specific treatments.

Steam Therapy

A most useful therapy to help with clearing the respiratory system, suggested by Ytc Kang Iwa is as follows:

  • Boil some water and pour it into a bucket.
  • Put some Cajeput Oil (or a similar oil that is safe to inhale) drops in the steaming water.
  • Breathe in the steam through both your nose and mouth, covering your face and head enough over the bucket so the steam is focused to your face.
  • Keep doing this until your face is sweating. Wipe your face when done.
  • Add some cool water to the bucket so the temperature of the water is not too hot, then immerse your hands in this tolerably hot water for a few minutes.
  • Next, immerse your feet for a few minutes.

It’s certainly quite difficult to breathe in while you are having asthma-like symptoms. And I was having to go to the washbasin to cough out phlegm every few seconds, as the steam induced expulsion.

But this becomes a gauge, to see how far you have recovered, how clear your lungs are. When healthy, you hardly cough at all when inhaling this minty steam.

I did this therapy every 2 to 3 days, but doing it more frequently, say twice a day, would have been more beneficial.

Ytk Kang Ray had a less gentle approach: using tissue (I found cotton buds more practical) dipped in some Cajeput Oil, then gently swab the nostrils, just high enough where it gets sensitive (be careful!), and inhale. This induces sneezing, do this 2-3 times in a session, the sneezing will reduce in that period interestingly. Certainly take basic hygiene measures, like doing this in the bathroom, and disposing of the buds appropriately.


This is an update (13th April 2022): I just thought of this, to assist with the lack of exercise (and thus sweating) due to general weakness and fatigue: sunbathing at the appropriate morning hours (around 10 AM or so) to help induce sweating is a great way to remove waste through the skin, when one can’t easily exercise.

Black Cumin Seed Oil

Another thing that a friend suggested was black cumin seed oil. These come in capsule form, for general immunity and helping with the cough. They are better known by their Arabic name Habbatus Sauda. For me, there was benefit, but nothing dramatic, on the other hand, with a friend’s wife, her cough went away quite quickly. So it would depend on the cough type, likely.

Blockage of Waste Exit Points

Observing what I went through, it’s as if the disease blocked viral exit points from the body:

  1. Breathing difficulties, blocks expulsion of waste through the respiratory tract.
  2. Constipation/Lack of Bowel Movement, blocks expulsion of waste through the digestive tract.
  3. Weakness, and lethargy, blocks expulsion of waste through the skin, through sweating.

Divine Guidance

Where did all this self-awareness come from? There are a couple of ways of looking at intuition, and both ways are equally true:

  1. That intuition is a unconscious or subconscious culmination of all experience and knowledge coming together in complete harmony.
  2. That it is of Divine origin.

For those with a spiritual bent, ALL is of Divine origin, so to me, it does not really matter.

Humans, in our arrogance and ignorance, think we are on our own, that God does not speak to us, and therefore God does not exist.

Perhaps, we are not yet evolved enough to be able to hear God speak, but let’s consider this:

If you heard a voice talk to you, would you not be afraid? Would you not question your sanity? And then there are mental diseases where people hear voices. So perhaps this is not the best medium of communication that God has for the vast majority of people?

Is it not better that Divine Guidance come through signs, through blessings in daily life: finding the right medicine in the case of the tom yum, having the will to remain strong, of having good friends and family, and eventually, hearing and feeling said Guidance through your heart.

Perhaps, later we can hear things more clearly. But primarily, God is a BEING.

Ending Thoughts

Were I to exclude my spiritual views from this post, then I would be an ingrate. By including them, I have exposed myself to ridicule and perhaps, loss of friends, and the risk that the more directly logical parts of the post are ignored.

Sadly, these are the times we live in, where if you believe in Divinity, then you are essentially unenlightened. Irony majeure.

I would hope most of my thought processes are logical. Common knowledge applicable to most diseases.

Yet, the fear of the virus is so extreme. Our responses have been draconian, locking down entire countries, segregating people into classes: the illuminated vaxxed vs. the stupid, dirty unvaxxed. We have also overloaded the healthcare system such that people with existing, non-Covid diseases have had trouble getting care. In many countries, public hospitals have been incentivised to deny non-Covid care, because the government pays them to handle Covid patients.

The other alternative I had was to simply not share this. But, this is one small measure that I can take during these crazy times, with the intent that it might help someone.

May God bless us all. Sallam as we in the BKC say.

May 11, 2021 - General Personal Reflection

To Family in India

I write this primarily for my friends and family in India, in particular, for those who have at least some inkling of belief in God. In the last week, I have lost an aunt and a cousin, supposedly due to this virus we call COVID-19.

I know nothing of COVID-19. It may or may not exist. It may or may not be deadly. I am but an ignorant fool with little to no medical knowledge.

But ignorant fools tend to view the world with simple, not necessarily simplistic, eyes. And this ignorant fool has had the immeasurable blessing of studying in the BKC, a school where one is taught the art of life and living, for just under three decades now. It is these teachings, not the random words of an ignorant fool, that I wish to share. All blessings are due to the BKC, all mistakes are due to my imperfections (I did say I am an ignorant fool, after all). This is not a promotion of the BKC, but the BKC is the undeniable source of what I am about to share.

Here we go, please hear me out, my family in India, a major birthplace of spirituality, whose people seem to have lost their way in the noise of the politicisation of COVID-19.

  1. No matter what, NO MATTER WHAT, the Will of God, our Supreme Creator, the ONE with Uncountable Names in Uncountable Traditions and Religions is ALL that matters. If God Wills it, then it will happen. All destiny, all karma, remains subservient to this Will.

  2. Wear your masks, take your medicines, take your vaccines, do whatever recommendations well-meaning humans have provided, for they care, for God’s Will works through various media, but never, ever forget point 1. Submit only to that Divine Will, and nothing else.

  3. In truth, COVID-19 is a test of faith in its most practical, real sense. No theory. You must learn to believe in God’s Will. Choose. Believe. Choose to Believe.

  4. Believe yourself to be a creation of the Perfect One. Have confidence in yourself, KNOW that your body is MUCH stronger than any doctor, any virologist makes it out to be. How can you claim to be a creation of the Supreme God and yet be so weak-willed?

  5. For your own mental and physical well-being, stop, STOP wildly consuming the news. In a few days, you will feel way better. News today does not seek to inform you, it seeks to sell advertisements. That is all there is to it. All else is packaging and rhetoric. News is not just TV, it’s Whatsapp groups, and statuses, Facebook statuses, clichéd, idiotic shares from petty people who have nothing better to do with their time.

  6. The mind leads the body. But after a point, they start affecting each other. So take care of both: News seeks to weaken your mind, and then your body follows. Then the body’s weakness further convinces the mind that you are indeed weak. The true health professional knows very well to keep patients in good spirits. Because their immune system depends on it. Such nastiness today, that instead you are injected with fear.

  7. Stop believing politicians. Any politician, it does not matter, they care only for votes, only for power, only for what will keep them in power. NOTHING ELSE. All kindness is meant to support only themselves. Means to an end. Waste no time arguing about politics. They are nearly all shitbags who have long lost any empathy for their fellow creatures.

  8. Stop idiotic family fueds. You have seen death and havoc, your petty, moronic, small-minded fueds have no meaning now. Time to focus on bigger things.

  9. See point 1.

How is it that India, the Land of Spirituality, of the Science of Divine Union (Yoga), has reached this state?

Stand up, already. It is time.

Sallam, Divine Blessings to All Creation
  Kamal V. Advani, BKC
Jakarta, May 11, the 21st Year

Dec 13, 2020 - General

Akulaku Indonesia: Ajang Pelicin Penipuan

Posting ini saya buat sejujurnya, dan sebenarnya, dan karena rasa kesal karena usaha melalui jalur resmi tidak membawa hasil, bahkan tidak dianggap. Saya memiliki semua bukti, semua screenshot dari HP.

Semoga cerita nyata ini menjadi peringatan bagi saudara, kerabat, maupun khalayak umum untuk sangat berhati-hati memberi barang di platform (peron, serambi) Akulaku, karena disaat bermasalah, tidak akan dibantu.

Pada titik ini, sudah jenuh untuk mengurus ini untuk diri sendiri, tapi paling tidak, hati saya lega saat sudah memberikan peringatan akan perilaku busuk Akulaku dan toko bernama Sinar Abadi (mengaku di Jakarta Barat, tapi hanya Tuhan Maha Mengetahui) atau oknumnya, sama saja bagi saya.

Ada beberapa opsi lagi, sebetulnya:

  1. Ke kantor Akulaku langsung, di Jakarta.
  2. Melaporkan kasus ini ke BPKN

Tapi, terus terang saja, dan tentu ini yang diharapkan juga Akulaku maupun para toko penipu, saya lebih menghargai Waktu saya, daripada mengejar kebodohan ini.

Posting ini adalah Jalan Tengah, antara kesal ingin menindaklanjuti para penipu ini, dengan menghargai prioritas Waktu pribadi.

Tentang Akulaku

Akulaku adalah platform e-commerce di Indonesia yang mempermudah sistem cicilan untuk pembelian barang-barang eceran, dengan syarat bunga yang cukup besar, sistem mikrocredit (tapi makrobunga!).

Akulaku sendiri sepertinya hanya menjual beberapa jasa seperti membayar listrik, tapi secara umum, dia adalah platform untuk penjual-penjual lain membuka toko online, seperti halnya Bukalapak, atau Tokopedia.

Akulaku yang mengatur sistem pembayaran, berikut sistem cicilan, tapi pengadaan barang dari toko-toko pedagang individu di platform ini.

Akulaku mengaku di situsnya:

PT PID dan PT AFI telah terdaftar dan diawasi oleh OJK.

Sayang sekali, ini sepertinya sekedar slogan, karena perilakunya lebih parah dari Pedagang Kaki Lima di Pasar Malam yang hilang esok harinya. Tidak ada efek sama sekali pendaftaran ini.

Satu lagi jeleknya Akulaku, dia adalah mobile-only, tidak seperti platform e-commerce lainnya, yang selalu ada fasilitas website. Paling-paling hanya ada:

Berarti, kita sangat terbatas memberikan feedback, mengumpulkan dan melampirkan bukti, karena tergantung fasilitas terbatas di aplikasinya.

Walau dia ada email resmi tapi hanya dapat auto-reply agar menggunakan aplikasi HP untuk melaporkan masalah.

Pengalaman Pembelian HP Dengan Toko Penipu di Akulaku

Ini adalah cerita pengalaman, yang membuka mata, bahwa masih begitu kurangnya profesionalisme di dunia e-commerce Indonesia tercinta.


Saya, lewat saudara saya, memesan HP baru, Vivo Y12, RAM 3GB, Storage 64 GB, pada toko bernama Sinar Abadi di platform Akulaku. Toko bernama indah, tapi lebih cocok dinamakan Sinar Redup Remang-Remang karena perilakunya.

Dia mengaku mengirim tanggal 30 November, 2020.

Setelah 7-8 hari, HP baru sampai.

Harga HP sekitar 1.8jt, dengan ongkos kirim 100,000 (100 Rb), harga total 1.9jt lebih, dan tetap butuh 7 hari untuk sampai. Padahal toko mengaku di Jakarta Barat, dan saya di Jakarta Utara.

Perhatikan, bahwa ini adalah harga cukup standar, bukan harga miring. Bahkan, terasa, sih penjual ingin agar terlihat murah, tapi menambahkan untungnya di ongkos kirim yang tidak wajar. Sayang, keganjilan seolah tak jujur ini saya abaikan.

Dan ini semua tanpa komunikasi yang memadai. Baik dari Akulaku, dari Sinar Abadi, juga dari jasa kurir J&T, semua tidak bisa memberikan jawaban adanya keterlambatan ini.

Nomor resi saat order, dengan saat barang sampai, beda total.

Barang Diterima Tak Sesuai Spesifikasi

Dan, paling parah, barang yang diterima salah:

  1. Barang Bekas, walau ada plastic diatas box, ternyata segel box telah dilepas. Dan sangat jelas terlihat di casing HP tanda-tanda gores, sebagaimana HP yang sering dipakai.
  2. HP sudah di setting dengan berbagai aplikasi, bukan dari set-up awal.
  3. Storage bukan 64GB, tapi 32GB. Ini saja sudah cukup untuk meminta ganti, kalau Akulaku dan Sinar Abadi jujur.

Saya sudah bersusah payah membuat video unboxing sebagai bukti. Sudah mengirim email, twitter, dll. Tidak digubris baik oleh Sinar Abadi ataupun Akulaku.

Ini adalah status keluhan saya pada Akulaku di twitter: dengan nomer referensi.

Sebelum inipun, saudara saya, sudah begitu banyak menelepon Customer Service Akulaku, juga berusaha berkomunikasi dengan pihak toko Sinar Abadi tadi.

Niat Penipuan

Kenapa saya sebut penipuan?

Jelas, barang tak sesuai, dan tidak ada keinginan dari pihak toko untuk mengganti dengan yang sesuai.

Terus menerus sih oknum toko Sinar Abadi penjawab chat di Akulaku mengatakan agar membaca ulang spesifikasi barang. Padahal jelas sekali dari screenshot pemesanan spesifikasinya yang dipesan tidak sesuai yang dikirim.

Dari harga HP pun terus terang, bukanlah harga miring, dan sesuai harga pasaran untuk spesifikasi yang dibeli.

Keterlambatan mengirim pun terasa sekali sebagai suatu kesengajaan pihak Sinar Abadi karena telah berniat tidak baik.

Akhir Kata

Hanya mengulang peringatan diawal, agar berhati-hati menggunakan jasa yang tidak profesional dari Akulaku.

Kenapa posting ini disebut Ajang Pelicin Penipu? Karena para toko redup-remang yang berniat menipu, sangat mudah berkembang di platform Akulaku yang sama sekali tidak membantu para pelanggannya. Padahal sumber pendapatan dari para pelanggan sendiri.

Kami di Indonesia termasuk orang-orang yang begitu toleran, dan menerima, tapi tetap ada batasannya.

Kita bandingkan dengan platform Amazon yang ada prosedur jelas mengajukan pengembalian barang, tanpa pertanyaan, dan tak dikenakan biaya pada pelanggan.

Gimana kah e-commerce Indonesia akan bisa berkembang jika penipuan begitu mudah?

Awas, waspada, bijaksanalah para saudara, kerabat, teman, dan pembaca.

Pesan khusus bagi Akulaku dan toko Sinar Abadi, tenang saja, Hukum Alam, Hukum Karma senantiasa ada. Silahkan anda-anda berbahagia ria untuk saat ini, menanti konsekuensi dari perilaku busuk anda.

Bagi saya, dengan ekonomi berkecukupan, yang saya terima hanya rasa kesal dan marah, tapi terbayang bagi pelanggan yang memiliki keuangan terbatas, yang mungkin sudah mengumpulkan uang seperlunya untuk kebutuhan tertentu, tapi ditipu.

Mar 11, 2019 - Software dev matplotlib python

Matplotlib: Interactive and Non-Interactive Use

I’ve been experimenting with matplotlib recently, both interactively in an ipython shell as well as non-interactively as a chart image generator to be served through the web.

This post shares some tips that took some searching on how matplotlib operates in different interaction contexts.

General Concept: Backends

matplotlib has the concept of backends — essentially the target canvas or surface it can render a figure to.

A backend implementation takes matplotlib’s internal representations of high-level drawing objects such as lines and axes and converts these to a form suitable for that backend.

For example, an image backend — effectively what we use when we save a figure to a file or stream — will know about different image formats, and how to convert drawing objects into pixels in that format.

The key point here is that interactive and non-interactive modes require a backend implementation suitable specifically to each of them.

The following ipython sample session illustrates common backend API calls which we will need in later sections:

In [1]: import matplotlib as mpl                                                 

In [2]: mpl.get_backend()                                                        

Out[2]: 'Qt5Agg'

In [3]:  

In [3]: %matplotlib --list                                                       

Available matplotlib backends: ['tk', 'gtk', 'gtk3', 'wx', 'qt4', 'qt5', 'qt', 
'osx', 'nbagg', 'notebook', 'agg', 'svg', 'pdf', 'ps', 'inline', 'ipympl', 

In [7]: mpl.use('pdf')

In [8]: mpl.get_backend()

Out[8]: 'pdf'

Note that simply doing mpl.use('qt5') fails. The suffix agg needs to be added in some cases — but obviously not all, as per the pdf example above (go figure) — like so:


It is not case-sensitive, so Qt5Agg and qt5agg work just the same. The exception that shows actually lists the proper names:

ValueError: Unrecognized backend string 'gtk': valid strings are ['GTK3Agg', 
'GTK3Cairo', 'MacOSX', 'nbAgg', 'Qt4Agg', 'Qt4Cairo', 'Qt5Agg', 'Qt5Cairo', 
'TkAgg', 'TkCairo', 'WebAgg', 'WX', 'WXAgg', 'WXCairo', 'agg', 'cairo', 
'pdf', 'pgf', 'ps', 'svg', 'template']  

Furthermore, even though ipython lists those various backends, it may still fail on calling use(...), and require you to install additional components.

Basically, ipython is aware of a bunch of possible backends, and attempts to dynamically load the one requested by matplotlib.use(...).

Switching backends can happen prior to any plotting command, e.g. matplotlib.pyplot.plot(..).

In [61]: mpl.use('agg')                                                          

In [62]:, y)                                                           

Out[62]: <BarContainer object of 25 artists>

In [63]:                                                              

: UserWarning: Matplotlib is currently using agg, which is a non-GUI 
backend, so cannot show the figure.
  % get_backend())

In [64]: mpl.use('qt5agg')                                                       

In [66]:, y)                                                           

Out[66]: <BarContainer object of 25 artists>

In [67]:                                                              

Interactive Mode

In an interactive shell such as ipython, we want an interactive backend such as Qt5Agg or TkAgg.

TkAgg in particular, was what worked for me on Mac with an Anaconda distribution without installing anything further.

These are image renderer and viewer implementations with controls for interactive use.

When exploring in interactive mode, I was confused why was only taking effect once: calling show() then closing the chart window, and calling show() again does nothing.

Essentially, one needs to reissue a plotting command such as or pyplot.plot(...) to force a draw, and then call show() again.

Of course, simply starting afresh with a new figure also works, since a new figure is a fresh draw.



Non-Interactive Mode

A common use case for non-interactive mode is to produce and serve graphics over the web. The server code will run completely headless and not require any GUI toolkits to be installed where it is deployed.

We will often get user inputs, plot the figure in-memory, then stream it through, encoded as an image to be rendered on the browser, or saved to disk, etc.

The correct backend to use for this is agg.

Essentially, as part of bootstrapping our application, webapp or otherwise, we need to run the following prior to any plotting API calls being made:

import matplotlib
matplotlib.use('Agg') # case-insensitive

In most frameworks, such as Flask, this can be done in the web module’s where we create the application object.

Of course, this configuration appropriately stops show() from working, issuing a UserWarning:

In [61]: mpl.use('agg')                                                      

In [62]:, y)                                                       
Out[62]: <BarContainer object of 25 artists>

In [63]:                                                          
: UserWarning: Matplotlib is currently using agg, which is a non-GUI 
backend, so cannot show the figure.
  % get_backend())

Happy Hacking!