Wednesday, April 08, 2009


A nice post in a Young Economists' Talk@ Starbucks as it tried to relate free coffee promotion by starbucks with 'not using my vote' preference (in Indonesian language commonly called "Golput" - Golongan Putih or Non-Color Group).
The Starbucks free coffee promotion is one classic example on how incentives works. During non-working day due to general election, they try to attract customers attention by inviting them to Starbucks. The same situation also apply with the general election (April 9, 2009), where most of the candidates also tried to attract voters' attention and wish to get vote as much as possible. The main problem with the candidates is that they not clearly offered the incentives to the voters to vote them. In my opinion, I am not getting any idea on why I have to vote them. You may take a look the reasons why I am not preferred any of the candidates at all here and here.

Regarding the picture above, it should be very clear for many of you that not using my vote is my right. In fact, by not using my vote I am creating a constructive incentives for political actors to be better. Why? Because if I consciously using my preferences then I should expect the best candidates will appears and not only the "free-riders" type of candidates. Thus, this year I will let the "nonsense" candidates playing in the political arena but I will not vote for them. Rather, I might be going to the Starbucks to enjoy the free coffee as it is more beneficial for me definitely. I will enjoy my coffee while I am waiting for potential candidates and better election systems in Indonesia to be working well together. Finger cross!

Happy vote my fellow Indonesian!

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