NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
(A personal view from the Celtic League DOI)
All in all it’s been a curious two weeks for people on the Isle of Man certainly if you follow what’s reported in the Manx media.
First the Chief Minister emphasised on several occasions the need for the Island to get ‘up close and friendly’ with British politicians. After trundling off some weeks ago to the Labour conference he visited the Conservatives last week. Of course there’s nothing wrong with ‘networking’ but when you bear in mind the newly appointed Labour leader has at the top of his ‘to do list’ shutting the Isle of Man down it would seem a wasted exercise.
Similarly the Conservatives would seem to be a strange group to engage with as they seem, given their conference is surrounded by a police cordon complete with snipers, to have difficulty relating to their own people.
Still I suppose Allan Bell MHK (Manx Chief Minister) and the COMIN ‘odds and sods’ who accompanied him will have had an enjoyable holiday at tax payers expense.
Back in the Isle of Man the Industry Minister, Laurence Skelly MHK, was waxing lyrical about the new £50 million Economic Development Fund which he has to hand out to businesses. Apparently this is to stimulate business and make the Island better off.
It is confusing however that Manx businesses need to be given ‘bribes’ to stimulate their activity whereas at the other end of the scale the unemployed have to be sanctioned and their benefit levels cut as happened last week.
Also to put this £50 million give-away from the IOM Reserves in a more sobering light the Manx Utilities political head, Alfred Cannan MHK, reminded Manx people that the MU (which looks after Electicity, Gas and Water services still owes a whopping half a billion pounds). The MU did sweeten the pill somewhat by saying they had generated a surplus but to be honest this was only because earlier this year they hiked prices up.
The private sector untitilty area was no better with the Gas supplier Manx Gas performing the most amazing feat of fiscal gymnastics by lowering prices but raising standing charges end result 7000 consumers worse of.
Nothing that has happened during this ten days a ‘news chaos’ on the Island has been seriously challenged least of all by Mann’s toothless and worthless media.
Politically as well as MHKs get out their new shoes and satchels for the first term of the political years after their four month vacation it’s back to business.
As we reported earlier for CL News one of the first items on next weeks agenda is a meeting of its Social Policy Review Committee (link)
The Policy Review Committee given its agenda is to ‘review a range of topics’ certainly doesn’t seem to be going to hit the ground running. Reviewing ‘a range of topics’ hardly sounds a riveting event! Perhaps for a future meeting of the SPRC could discuss ‘SOCIAL DISINTEGRATION ON THE ISLE OF MAN’. With the government effectively holidaying around UK political conferences, with money being expended handed to business from the reserves when the Island has a half billion debt. With energy prices on the increase an food bank usage on the rise social chaos can’t be far away.
Issued by: The Celtic News
THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE
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