Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Stability tops democracy, ex-Singapore leader says
"Stability for investors in Singapore is more important than the "democracy" promoted by Western media, the city-state's influential founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew was quoted as saying Monday.Lee told a meeting that the Western media "want me to listen to them, have more democracy, more protests like Taiwan -- that's a democracy," The Straits Times reported."But you calculate yourself, do you want us to make them happy or to have the investors have confidence in us? Which is good for us?" he was quoted as saying."Where do they put their money? If they think Singapore is a... chaotic country, we won't have such investments."The city-state is Southeast Asia's most advanced economy and one of the most politically stable countries in the region. Thousands of foreign firms have made Singapore their base of operations.The country's leaders say its tough laws against dissent and other political activity are necessary to ensure the stability which has helped it achieve economic success.Singapore's leaders maintain that Western-style liberal democracy is not suitable for the tiny, multi-racial nation."