This is in response to the letter Economy: Mahathir was right about spending.
I totally disagree. Dr Mahathir Mohamad was definitely wrong about spending. Mahathir's government drastically overspent during his 22 years in power. Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is now struggling to solve the problems that Mahathir left behind. He will need another few years of cutting government spending, reducing the budget deficit and finally balancing the books.
I don't think he's doing enough and I doubt he will be able to restore the economy. He lacks the courage to confront all the vested interests.
Mahathir's biggest mistake was to spend too much, and worse, to spend on the wrong things. Spending for the sake of spending is sheer wastage with little returns on investment. Examples are the Twin Towers, the Commonwealth Games Village, Proton, Perwaja, the F1 circuit.
He should have spent on funding our rubber products industry, the oil palm products industry, the furniture industry, etc. Spend on things that increase our competitiveness and productivity in areas where we have a natural advantage. I hope Pak Lah does not repeat this mistake.
I would also like to respond to Penyokong BN's letter. It's a long letter but I shall just pick out one part. The writer mentioned that we should be proud of the Petronas Twin Towers, signifying one of the achievements of the BN government.
Now, the Petronas Twin Towers was designed by a New York architectural firm, one of its towers was built by a Japanese construction company, and the other tower simultaneously built by a Korean construction company.
The landscape of the KLCC park was designed by a Brazilian. The elevators are supplied by an American company. Most of the workers are Indonesians and other foreigners. Now, what are we supposed to be proud of?
Is Penyokong BN saying that we should be proud of the BN government using Petronas' money to build the towers? Isn't that sheer wastage, considering that, today, we are staring at rising oil prices and reduction of petrol subsidies? Is he still proud?