A Terrible Waste of Money?
Call me old, call me old fashioned, call me anything you like. However, if you happened to be in Bali or happen to follow any news from Indonesia you will know that the G20 is happening here. Yes, you will know all about the whole world attending this massive conference as the world emerges from the pandemic.
Even though COVID is on the rise in both Canada and Indonesia, it’s best to live with it rather than shutting down businesses. The point here is not the pandemic but the G20.
Indonesia is no longer considered a third-world country. A term that is lesser used now. Indonesia is a developing nation. That by all accounts is very true. The massive changes are clear. Indonesia is a very different country from twenty years ago.
To put this into perspective, the average person makes between $150 and $400 a month. The well paid or better paid individuals will make up to $1000/month CAD. Anything north of that you are making good coin here.
So, to check in on the G20…
I do not have exact figures, I will only go by what I have seen, witnessed, and spoken about the money that was and is being pissed away.
First, the roads. The main roads in Bali are adequate, not great, and not totally terrible. Let’s say at least 20 – 30 kilometers of roads and about 60 km of sidewalks were redone.
The sidewalks are all interlocking stones and they were raised about 5 cm. I am assuming to deal with the flooding that happens each rainy season. Then the roads were raised to match the curbs and the lips they created.
The sidewalks are so high that certain vehicles will beach themselves and scrape the bottom. I have done it in a Toyota Yaris. This is what everyone can see with the naked eye. Then the months of inconvenience that went with it for all the businesses and individuals is a whole other matter.
An area known as Nusa Dua is on virtual lockdown. Nearly 300 electric cars were bought to be used as transportation for the delegates and diplomats.
All the small shops that were killed off by the pandemic have been filled with happy new tenants in the area… All for show and to impress other nations who do not give a shit. Are you telling me that the Russian delegate will care about the little shop that is propped up for Bali and Indonesia to look good?
It’s all smoke and mirrors while the war is going on. Fix that, you pile of Mother F#*@ers. That is the real problem here… Not for you to all attend and piss away billions of dollars. Probably making Indonesia pay for it.
Call me narrow or simple minded but the money and effort for this is too much. How about the G 20 spelled out in seaweed over the toll road? Yes, so people can see as they fly in. Or the hundreds of trees planted along the roads for the show?
The above scratches the surface. How about the battleships in the ocean? Scattered about ready to do battle… That all must be free right?
The thousands upon thousands of security officers and army spread out all over Bali must be a paid task force as well. The snipers and helicopters flew into the strictly electrified zone of Nusa Dua. Oh, but the Beast that Biden rides in was allowed to be gas powered. It is all smoke and mirrors. Agreements will be made along with promises and handshakes. Yet no one will ever see the billions spent on the G20. A pile of local contractors made a load of money along the way.
Every contractor and politician involved in the organization made a few million dollars in kickbacks and bribes. But hey it’s all for the good of Indonesia and global recognition for a few days of fame.
The Point is?
This is all for show and yes there will be the talk of Indonesia on the world stage. However, I am sure the several billion dollars pissed away would buy billions of ads on social media and probably would have been better spent creating real and sustainable differences in the local economy and for the locals.
While many Indonesians are still without jobs, one can only hope that this show translates into something much more substantial than what it appears to be. With the amount of money spent, I hope that there will be a benefit in the long run. Much like most Olympics, this performance of dignitaries better is record-shattering since the world is in a mess.
Indonesia put on a good show. Nusa Dua is the poster child of what all of Bali should look like. As with most things in politics, no one gives a shit. So, let’s revisit this in a few weeks when the smoke and the show of force by snipers, warplanes, and destroyers clear off the coast.