26th April 2019
LKY was only a half-baked leader till 1968 when he spent time at Harvard to learn many new things
This extract from LKY’s book, From Third World to First, is very interesting:
After I had settled policies to counter the loss of British military spending, in the autumn of 1968, I took a short sabbatical at Harvard. I had been in office for nine years and needed to recharge my batteries, get some fresh ideas and reflect on the future. The Kennedy School of Government made me an honorary fellow and arranged breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and seminars for me to meet a host of distinguished scholars. During the exchanges, they sparked off many useful and interesting ideas. I learned much about American society and economy by reading and talking to Harvard Business School professors such as Professor Ray Vernon. Vernon gave me a valuable lesson on the ever-changing nature of technology, industry, and markets, and how costs, especially wages in labor-intensive industries, determined profits. That was how Hong Kong entrepreneurs were able co build up such a successful textile and garments industry. They had been nimble, changing their produce lines, patterns, and designs with changing fashions. It was a never-ending competition against ocher equally agile and lower-cost producers in Taiwan and South Korea. And their sales promoters were frequently flying to consult their buyers in New York and ocher big cities. He dispelled my previous belief that industries changed gradually and seldom moved from an advanced country to a less-developed one. Reliable and cheap air and sea transport made it possible co move industries into new countries, provided their people were disciplined and trained co work the machines, and there was a stable and efficient government co facilitate the process for foreign entrepreneurs.
If only ANYONE OF INDIA’S LEADERS had studied seriously in their life. TOTAL DUNCES, these Indian leaders. No wonder Singapore did so brilliantly well and India is a total mess.