Political Parties and the Power of Money in Indonesia and Beyond
TRANS-TRANS-REGIONAL AND -NATIONAL STUDIES OF SOUTHEAST ASIA | CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS | Published : 2015
Political parties in Indonesia and in other parts of Southeast Asia have become vitally dependent on the financial support of individuals or conglomerates with large private fortunes. A remarkable new development is that some of the billionaires who have long sponsored political parties have decided to out themselves as political leaders, and thus to adopt the style of oligarchs. I define an oligarchy as a society featuring systematic conflation of political and economic power within the same individuals or within small, elite groups of such individuals in a manner that is visible, tolerated and hence legitimated. The gradual shift from clandestine money politics to open oligarchy is a signi..View full abstract
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Research for this article was carried out with funding from the Australian Research Council. I am grateful to the reviewers and editors for their helpful comments.