Turning back state and economic system to Pancasila and the 1945 Constitution

Salamuddin Daeng
Indonesia Political Economy Association (Asosiasi Ekonomi Politik Indonesia – “AEPI”) Economic Observer

Don’t Forget History

IO – “Jasmerah – don’t ever forget his­tory” Bung Karno said. History is not just a memory of the past, it is not just a series of events, it is the heart of our hearts, it is our mind; it is dia­lectical, dynamic, the path that guides us to the future.

How could someone who forgets history can survive normally? A per­son who forgets history is like an am­nesiac, he has no memories of the past, so he no longer remembers any­thing around him because everything around him comes from the past. As a result, he did not know where he was. The world became strange to him, he did not have any grip to judge right or wrong, good or bad, important or not important. Amnesiacs will never know where they want to go and what they want to achieve.

Likewise a nation or society. There is no way a nation can live normally if it has amnesia. The nation did not know who it was, where it came from, why it existed; it also did not know who was around it, even it did not know where to go. Surely sooner or later it will disperse and perish.

Likewise the nation and state of In­donesia. The existence of Indonesia is not merely a wish of a person or group of people to form a country, not just a brilliant idea that is suddenly pres­ent among a handful of scholars. The formation of the Indonesian nation and state is a historical will, a result of international battles and national struggles.

The Indonesian nation and state will not exist if there is no struggle against the Europeans: the British, Portuguese, Spanish and Dutch co­lonialism. Indonesia will not exist if there is no resistance to imperialism and colonialism. As a result of all the hardest possible struggles against oc­cupations, this spirit and nationalism of Indonesia emerged and material­ized, and the Indonesian state became a reality.

The presence of the state of In­donesia is the will of the Indonesian people to escape from the shackles of colonialism, the result of a universal resistance of the Indonesian people so that their prayers for independence are granted by Allah Subhanahuwata­ala. The noble desire to form the state philosophy and ideology, namely Pancasila and the 1945 Constitu­tion, is likewise truly endowed by Allah Subhanahuwataala.

If the Indonesian people continue to strengthen their historical mem­ories, they will be able to realize the danger of Neocolonialism and Neo Imperialism or Nekolim. As so many times Bung Karno warned against it: the Nekolim or colonialism in new forms that created dependency by new nations.

Pancasila Against Imperialism Pancasila has become the foun­dation of the Republic of Indonesia whose independence was proclaimed on August 17, 1945. Pancasila has also become the philosophy and ideology of the Indonesian people. Pancasila becomes the basis for all laws and regulations that govern all aspects of nation-building and state­hood.

Pancasila is a very original inven­tion, an essence of values that lives in Indonesian society, the result of the history of the Indonesian people up to the present. Pancasila would not exist if the Indonesian people did not feel the misery of being op­pressed by foreign colonialism. Pan­casila would not exist if the Indone­sian people had never felt the greed of capitalism. Pancasila would not exist if the Indonesian nation never felt the cruelty of imperialism. Pan­casila would never have existed if the Indonesian nation had never felt the brutality of colonialism. Pancasila will not exist if the Indonesian people have never felt physical or spiritual suffering due to a nation’s desire to dominate and exploit other nations.

Pancasila is a synthesis of the course of history against capitalism, imperialism, colonialism, and all forms of ambition, the desire of one nation to oppress or colonize other nations. Pancasila is not just a se­quence of precepts, but a historical meaning in the form of philosophy, so that it becomes an ideology that guides the life of the Indonesian peo­ple, the basis in forming the consti­tution as a strategy to realize Pan­casila as a reality of Indonesian life.

Pancasila which is the philosophy of the Indonesian nation becomes a way of life, an analytical knife to see the world and its development. Pan­casila is the core of values that live in the Indonesian nation. The val­ues that have been the spiritual and moral convictions of the Indonesian people which make them feel safe to continue with their lives.

Pancasila as a philosophy is not extracted from the soul of other na­tions but the soul of the Indonesian people themselves, namely an atti­tude and characteristics seen in the life of Indonesian society as a bal­anced and harmonious national uni­ty. A condition that is bestowed by na­ture to the Indonesian people. Nature provides everything. Nature which indeed always reaches its balance and harmony with all its creatures. So Pancasila was born in Indonesia and not in another world.

Harmony will never be born in an individualistic society that is full of an antagonistic spirit of competition and makes the free fight as a strategy to achieve changes by defeating some groups of people or even annihilating them. Such societies have grown in the realm of materialism and their social change is guided by constant contradictions. The state of harmony will only be born in a community of families whose basis of relationships in their lives is to help and achieve progress together and not mutually kill each other. That is what distin­guishes Pancasila from all theories and practices of social change in western societies.

Pancasila is an ideology that places capitalism as an enemy. Capitalism is an ideology rooted in materialism which grew in the environment of western European society, becoming the main driving force of European colonialism and imperialism through­out the world. Pancasila distinguish­es itself from communism, an ideol­ogy that grows from the same roots as capitalism, namely materialism and the same culture as capitalism, namely individualism.

Pancasila is a guide for the Indo­nesian people in looking at the future, becoming an ideal, a political goal that is to be realized by the Republic of Indonesia both in the internal and international environments.

Pancasila is not in the middle of two mainstream ideologies namely capitalism and communism. But Pancasila takes on a more universal domain of values, a feeling, a noble desire of all human beings who want to be free from all forms of colonial­ism.

Freedom from Dependence
If there were no struggle against foreign occupation there would be no Indonesian state, there would be no Pancasila, there would be no 1945 Constitution; the Opening of the 1945 Constitution and the body of the 1945 Constitution would not be like the original 1945 Constitu­tion. Thus, the Declaration of In­dependence on August 17, 1945, Pancasila, the Opening of the 1945 Constitution, the Body of the 1945 Constitution, and the Explanation of the 1945 Constitution, were an inseparable unity. Likewise with the articles governing the form of gov­ernment of the Indonesian state and the branches of government, includ­ing those regulating the Indonesian economy as contained in the original 1945 Constitution, are the imple­mentation of the mandate of the Dec­laration of Independence on August 17, 1945, the mandate of Pancasila, the mandate of the Opening of the 1945 Constitution.

That is why in the 1945 Consti­tution there is Article 33 paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 which regulate social wel­fare, which subsequently becomes the basis of the Indonesian economic system. Article 33 (1) The economy shall be structured as a joint effort based on the principle of kinship. (2) Branches of production which are important for the state and which control the livelihoods of the public are controlled by the state. (3) The earth, water, and the natural re­sources contained therein shall be controlled by the state and used for the greatest prosperity of the people. Furthermore, Article 34 stipulates that the poor and neglected children are cared for by the state.

It is important to explain once again that if the Indonesian nation had never experienced the oppres­sion of capitalism, colonialism, and imperialism, then the article that reg­ulates social welfare would not sound like that. The article on social welfare could contain the principles of a free market economy or neoliberalism so that the state would not need to play a social role; that role would simply be carried out by the “hidden hand” of the free market. However, because the Indonesian people understood so well about the cruelty of colonial­ism and imperialism that Article 33 eventually emphasized the concept of state control.

The purpose of Article 33 of the 1945 Constitution as explained fur­ther is as follows:

“Article 33 regulates the basis for democracy in economic matters, pro­duction is carried out by all for all un­der the leadership or surveillance of members of the community. It is the prosperity of the people that comes first and not that of the individuals. Therefore, the economy is structured as a joint effort based on the princi­ple of kinship. The suitable form is cooperative. “

Furthermore, state control over production branches that are im­portant to the state is explained as follows:

“The economy is based on the principle of democracy, prosperity for all the people. Therefore, the branch­es of production which are important for the state and which govern the livelihoods of many must be con­trolled by the state. If not, production would fall into the hands of powerful agents and many people would be op­pressed. Only companies that do not control the livelihoods of many may be in the hands of individuals. “

Furthermore, the importance of state control over strategic natural resources is explained as follows:

“The earth, water, and the natural resources contained therein are the bulk of people’s prosperity. Because of that it must be controlled by the state and used for the greatest pros­perity of the people.”

That is why since the beginning electricity must be controlled by the state and not by private companies or individuals because if that happens then the people will be oppressed.

The state’s control of electricity is supported by the state’s control of energy sources namely oil, gas and coal, and other energy sources. That is why from the very beginning the 1945 Constitution emphasized that water and natural resources con­tained therein must be controlled by the state because if controlled by in­dividuals it cannot be used as much as possible for the prosperity of the people but will be used to accumu­late personal profits.

Nevertheless, Article 33 is not possible if it is not supported by the implementation of the original 1945 Constitution in the political sphere. In summary, Article 33 will not be possible to be implemented in a liber­al political system based on the spir­it of separation of powers, and the checks and balances system which are the rules in the liberal political systems and the free markets. Article 33 paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 can only be implemented if the original 1945 Constitution is implemented compre­hensively in a consequent manner.

In the spirit of independence, on the basis of Pancasila and the 1945 Constitution, the Indonesian nation can be independent, free from the shackles of dependency, can mutu­ally assist other nations to carry out humanitarian ideals as stated in the preamble of the 1945 Constitution “that colonialism must be abolished, because it is not in accordance with humanity and justice.