• February 7, 2016



Anyone who studies the Moulton-Bell weekly interview this week will see immediately that Phil Gawne’s interview broadcast early this week has released an agenda that the CM does not like (link):


Despite the Chief Minister’s attempt to maintain composure he quite clearly is rattled that the independence (or as Gawne put it autonomy) issue has been raised.

The CM also on several occasions bizarrely links Gawne to Corbyn in one can only imagine an attempt to undermine the nature of Gawne’s narrative.

In another attempt to rubbish Gawne he said he (Phil Gawne) had not raised these issues in the last ‘ten years’ yet Gawne is on the record with a quite unequivocal view stated in 2011 in the Daily Telegraph:

“”Our closest neighbours have shown that when the chips are down we cannot rely on their support. It could be reasonably argued that the UK has demonstrated clear ambivalence if not outright hostility to our nation, being much more foe than friend in recent time”

Perhaps the Chief Minister doesn’t read the English newspapers? Well he does because in true underhand fashion at the time his office (not him personally) went on record to rebut Phil Gawne’s views. However 9 months later the Chief Minister was himself stating his nationalist credentials – he can be a contradictory character our Allan! (link):


Certainly when I spoke to Phil Gawne in January at length on these issues centre stage for him was the Isle of Man and its future not some linkage to some irrelevant UK socialist agenda. As spoilers it’s a pretty cheap jibe even by the CMs acerbic standards but I don’t think it will gain traction. Gawne clearly stated he believes in the Manx – not Marx!

This is nationalism you would think Allan would get that after all he used to espouse nationalist values – as indicated above restating them only three years ago.

Some hardy perennials were also churned out in the interview. We have lost £250 million (incidentally the figure is up £50 million from the last time he used it) and ‘the economy is what is important’.

Allan seemed almost irritated that Phil Gawne has had the temerity to talk about being masters in your own house and not having a Governor. Though on that latter point and for the first time the Chief Minister was forced to concede the UK should perhaps pay for his (the Governors) keep. That’s what a lot of people have been saying for sometime Allan but you have not been listening!

Really the Chief Minister can’t have it all ways this £200 million (sorry £250 million) shortfall gets dragged out every time he is in a spot. But on other occasions like magic it disappears.

One day Allan’s narrative is we are enjoying our 30th (or is it 40th) year on consecutive growth, we have one of the fastest growing economies despite the downturn ‘which we have weathered well’ and we have record levels of employment. All is roses and then someone rains on Allan’s parade this time one of his Ministers (don’t think he’s the only one Allan) and the VAT Bogeyman is brought out.

I don’t know whether Gawne’s idea is a goer. I don’t know whether it will gain traction.

What I do know is its better to try to take control of your own destiny rather than sit round taking crap from the UK and shovelling money out of our reserves to every business spiv that comes along.

Five years ago a group of young people went around the Island painting up the names of nations and the year that they were decolonised. As far as I’m aware none are desperately trying to get back under the wing of the United Kingdom

In any case at the end of the day all Gawne is suggesting is a mature debate about our future. Is that such a bad thing? Is debate something that Allan has also decided to proscribe?

The Chief Minister talked about the powers the Island has now and how the Lt Governor has virtually no power. Well I’ll tell you what Allan those powers were not gifted to the Island by the UK they were negotiated by your predecessors as part of an ongoing agenda of change and autonomy that has ceased under your government.

Oh! And I wouldn’t be to flippant about the Lt Governors remaining power Chief Minister I seem to remember he called in one of your predecessors and gave him his ‘cards’!

One thing I think the majority of people on this Island I think can be agreed on whether you support or oppose independence, whether you want greater autonomy or not. This government of Allan Bell’s is one that maintains its grip by ‘control-freakery’ and fear.

It is time for a proper and inclusive debate put the VAT bogeyman away Allan you can cry wolf just once too often!


Issued by: The Celtic News



The Celtic League established in 1961 has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It promotes cooperation between the countries and campaigns on a range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, military activity and socio-economic issues


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