• March 15, 2016


Events just seem to derail Allan Bell and COMIN in their attempts to tell us that the Island is on the verge of a GREAT LEAP FORWARD akin to the move by Mao back in the 1960s to rescue the failing Chinese economy.

Last week DED Minister, Laurence Skelly, announced that some firm no one had ever heard of before had been appointed to handle the GREAT EDF GIVE-AWAY. Laurence averred that it was important the people giving our money away were not the same (political) ones who had voted to give it away. I’m still trying to get my head around that?

It seems that Laurence believes that people will be more reassured if politicians and civil servants aren’t involved which kind of plays to a narrative that the public have that those groups can’t be trusted. It seems a bizarre philosophy but then nothing is simple up at DED.

As part of Mao’s ‘Great Leap Forward’ people were energised by being fed false information about the economy and about living standards. They were told they were not poor and hungry and if they were suffering that was so the plan would eventually work.

Similarly here sections of the media were enlisted last week to tell us although there is fuel poverty we are actually better of than some other places that have ‘really bad’ fuel poverty so the 3,500 households that are enduring fuel poverty can participate in Allan’s ‘Great Leap Forward’ and not feel left out. They may be cold but they’ll be on message the government’s mouthpiece will see to that.

Then to start this ‘good news week’ after last weeks ‘good news week’ Laurence Skelly told us the fact the unemployment figures had dropped slightly meant there would be a construction boom. Now Laurence’s basis for saying this was questionable but no one was going to challenge him as we all need to focus on the ‘Great Leap Forward’.

But then suddenly and unexpectedly something happened that showed the ‘Great Leap Forward’ wasn’t likely to be as successful as we have all been led to believe.

In a resounding ‘vote of confidence’ in Allan and his COMIN colleagues a Minister jumped overboard. He wasn’t just any Minister he was the Minister for Policy and Reform (John Shimmin). John was brought back by the Chief Minister, Allan Bell, after a brief spell in the wilderness post Sefton to replace the previous Minister for Policy and reform who also jumped ship. Indeed at the same time some members including Ministers were also taking to the Legco electoral lifeboat but this is different this is a key player in the team saying ‘come September’ just as the ‘Great Leap Forward’ is in full swing ‘I’m of’!

You can’t underestimate the significance of this although no doubt the spin machine will do so. This is the equivalent of Mao’s trusty lieutenant Chou En-lai defecting during the ‘Great Leap Forward’.

I don’t care how much positive spin ‘Mr Positive’ (aka Laurene Skelly) puts on it I’m decidedly worried about our £50 million because if all the architects of this plan jump ship or are kicked out who will be left to carry the can? You guessed it – us!

By the way just as an historical footnote after Mao’s ‘Great Leap Forward’ there was a famine!


Issued by: The Mannin Branch Celtic League



The Celtic League established in 1961 has branches in the six Celtic Countries including our own Mannin branch. 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

The link for the main web pages is below:


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