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About Galen

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  1. No matter which option is gone for we the motorists will pick up the tab, but for all we know the insurance industry might offer to do it for considerably less than 10% at no cost at all :-)
  2. Why no move to getting the insurers to collect car tax? Insurers know the vehicle and engine size, can find out its emissions easily enough and the IOM Govt can provide the emission banding charges. With this information insurers just put the road tax cost onto the vehicle's insurance. Many people pay their insurance monthly anyway, so depending on the vehicle it could be just a few pounds more per month. For the gas guzzlers, their insurance will not be cheap anyway so it is a direct consequence of having a large vehicle ie more expensive insurance and road tax. Insurers then issue IOM residents with a disc that verifies holder has insurance and paid their road tax, and if someone drives without disc then they can be done on 2 counts and thus face bigger fines. This might encourage those who currently feel they are exempt from paying to start complying. At year end, insurers pay IOM Govt the road tax they have collected less say 10% for admin, issuing disc etc, but can offer other services eg. discounted house insurance to reduce overall insurance costs to IOM residents to help keep costs down. This could make it worth insurance companies participating in such an approach as they may attract additional business. Those companies not interested lose business to those that are willing. IOM Govt is relieved of all the transactional costs, can make saving in manpower and admin, and still get more or less the same income less the 10% (or whatever) they have paid the insurers to provide the service. Not having a car tax disc on display has cost the UK Govt £m and caused all sorts of confusion to car owners. So why not keep it on show to immediately identify vehicles are paying their road tax and are insured? I accept it would take a bit of initial organising but is not beyond the wit of 'Mann' surely?
  3. In the last year I have raised it with 3 politicians including the CM and they not interested in the slightest in regulating the "God squad" - 'a step too far and not required'. They are not even prepared to require that the religious people carry visible ID. Nevertheless, our politicians are happy for charities to have to get a licence (and carry ID) to go door knocking, and delighted to ban cold callers as long as they are not from religious groups, or themselves when electioneering. IOM ICO, an arms length agency of the Cabinet Office (and therefore not truly independent of the politicos, unlike the UK) does not appear, so far, to wish to use GDPR to ensure that our data is being properly managed by those of us who tell the religious door knockers to get lost. The political hypocrisy on this and a number of other issues is incredible. But regretfully we get what we deserve - after all we voted them in!
  4. I am a little surprised our local Information Commissioner has not been vocal about a degree of regulation of the doorstep religious groups must comply with thanks to GDPR https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/07/15/jehovahs-witnesses-must-ask-permission-collecting-personal-data/ https://gdpr.report/news/2018/07/12/jehovahs-witnesses-suffer-smite-via-the-wrath-of-european-privacy-laws/ This also makes interesting reading https://avoidjw.org/en/policies-procedures/general-data-protection-regulation/ GDPR is a step in the right direction, but classing religious groups as cold callers in a similar way to those attempting to sell other services on the doorstep would be a good way forward. Perhaps JW could comment on the legality of such groups arriving unannounced and uninvited on the doorstep vis a vis a private householders right to privacy under the Human Rights Act.?
  5. Bringing the family to the door is perhaps intended to show that the particular religious group is all inclusive and family friendly - or it could be because the parents can't get baby sitters while they do their religious endeavours? In fairness it was a Saturday morning when 'they called'. The kids though were only toddlers. I felt really sorry for them, but perhaps that is the parent's ploy to reign you in!
  6. Equally sickening is when you get the whole family at the door, father, mother and 2 kids as I had a few months ago. I am not anti-religion, each to their own. But I do object when religious people come uninvited to my front door and I have no legal mechanism to stop them. Yet, according to Mr Perkins MHK, if they offer to clean my gutters (and this is not an euphemism), this would be deemed cold calling and I would have a legal remedy. The politicians aren't interested in legislating to regulate them for fear of upsetting other religious groups, and the Police are understandably too busy dealing with criminal activity. However, posing as a JW or other group, and wandering around estates going up to people's doors and having a look around to see if anyone is in, gives criminals the ability to to 'case a joint' without raising too much suspicion and in the knowledge that most people will just see them as religious zealots. Perhaps the spate of burglaries we had a few years ago was carried out with the assistance of religion and who those who committed the crimes were 'spirited away'?
  7. Agree, but in at least in public you have the choice of whether to approach them or not. When they are banging on your door and you don't know its them until you open your door, it is a different thing, A couple of my elderly neighbours find them frightening, A mate of mine has started getting their phone camera out when these religious bods appear and starts photographing them and their cars. Apparently, they don't like that as it means they can be identified. But at least it gives evidence to show the police of potential harassment.
  8. So religious groups and politicians can cold call but no one else (https://www.manxradio.com/news/isle-of-man-news/oft-police-work-together-to-stop-cold-callers/ ). So does that mean charities (Red Cross etc) are also banned from door knocking? Unlike the religious groups at least the charities provide their supporters with ID which they wear /produce on request as do the statutory authorities (Gas, Electricity, Water etc). As religion is arguably a 'service surely if for some god forsaken reason they can breeze up to your door uninvited and unannounced 'selling their wares' they should at least be required to carry ID? No, that is a step too far for our lily-livered politicians. The fact that some religious groups arrive in areas in a fleet of expensive cars, then go round in pairs, during the working day knocking on doors and 'preying' on the elderly, single parents, etc and then 'hover' around when is asked to leave if on finding someone who opens to the door to them, is OK as far as the politicians are concerned. Try ringing the police about strange people wandering up people's drives, looking in windows, ringing door bells, as though they were 'casing prospective premises' and they will tell you its ok, it is probably religious groups and just ignore them! This whole cold calling debacle is similar to the cleaning up of dog mess (which I agree owners should always do). On one hand our politicians will legislate to make it illegal / impose fines etc if a dog owner does not clean up after their dog, but will allow the 'horsey brigade's 'beasts of burden' to shit everywhere without any recourse.
  9. For the second year running my local insurance company has rung a few days before the expiry date of my policy and told me I won't be covered if I don't pay immediately. When I not pointed out that I had not received any reminder / renwal notice I was told they sent it by email 3 weeks earlier. When I said that I had not got any electronic reminder they then blamed the ISP. So I asked them to send the original email again there and then. They didn't, and instead sent a general one, which I thought was suspicious, but it appeared in my inbox within a few seconds. After pointing the ISP did not put their emails into Spam, the company then admitted some other customers had mentioned not getting a reminder before their due date. Talking to some acquaintances this seems to be quite a common occurrence with this particular insurer of no contact up until a few days before a policy expires then they descend with what I feel is harassing scare tactics. One young lady told me she told them she would shop around for comparative quotes and so they rang her every day asking if she had made her mind up. When I did decided to pay and rang them back they asked if I would be using the same card as last year and quoted its number - something I have not given them permission to hold. (They did ask for the CVV number but no doubt they are holding that too and were just pretending they didn't know!) Are these isolated cases or are others experiencing similar antics? (And before any highly organised posters state that I should make a note of when my insurance is due etc. etc. yes I probably should, but I wear my underwear under my clothes, do not wear a "S" on my chest, and can stand next to krypton without any adverse effects. I also expect responsible companies to act responsibly!) :-) Others experiences would be interesting to hear.
  10. Welcome Neil, got a civil servant to do it for me as I was busy with colouring in my pictures :-)
  11. IMHO it is the Chief Officers Group (aka COG) who hold the most power in respect of running the Island. They meet regularly with the Chief Sec who is part of their annual appraisal system and agree on a range of topics, guided by the Chief Sec who is in turn 'advised' by the Chief Minister. As with any public body the key to any decision that involves cost, (and arguably most do) the power lies with Treasury as to the affordability or not, and if not, where the money is to come from. While the Civil Service (CS) is technically non-political and is intended to serve the government of the day, irrespective or their colour or otherwise, the issue in the IOM is that as the political divisions do not exist in such a formal way as in the UK, the CS is trying to meet a wide range of political objections of individuals and frequently the politician who shouts the loudest or who is going to get the most 'brownie points' for their latest whim 'wins the day'.
  12. The issues this report will face, I fear, will be the same as many other reports and initiatives in the past, which mainly come down to encroachment on selected medical fiefdoms, that prevent them doing 'what they want to do' rather than what should be done. That is not to tarnish all the medical profession, but historically some clinicians, have not been prepared to embrace change if it has not assisted their private work. Another hurdle will be getting certain of our politicians to understand what is actually involved. While well-meaning, some of the implications of this report will, I believe, be beyond their comprehension and could be a possible threat to their re-election if the electorate is going to be inconvenienced or charged more - as, for example, proposed historical increases in prescription charges showed a few years ago. However, we are where we are, and the Report, for those that read it all, shines a light into a dark corner of what many of the dedicated staff in the DHSC have been trying to change, but have been prevented from doing so, from above. The odds the full implementation of this report I would put at pretty slim, with those that are implemented being the ones that (as often is the case) get the 'brownie points' for certain individuals.
  13. Is this why Manx health services are so poor? 'it appears to us that the Department has been wrestling with aspects of job planning and the ability to link that with performance management for at least five years and under former management some consultants have been able to negotiate very favourable remuneration packages with little performance assurance. When compared to England and Wales we would appear to be in the unenviable position of having some of the highest paid consultants responsible for some of the longest waiting lists, in a Hospital which is only operating at an average of 65% of its full capacity;' source : 3rd bullet on p54 of http://www.tynwald.org.im/business/opqp/sittings/20182021/2019-PP-0032.pdf
  14. Putting everything on social media is fine for those who are connected. But what about those, such as the elderly who are not. What are they supposed to do other than sit like lemmings waiting for the lights to come back on. A dedicated and updated landline number when there are power cuts / outages which has relevant information, would not be beyond a company that cared. Added to that one of the local radio stations could, as a public service provider, provide hourly updates with relevant news on the outage for those with non-mains connected radios. I witnessed another example of the wonders of MUA this afternoon in the area where I live. They had put all the street lights on and had a van going round seeing which ones where on or not. Apparently this is how they now check them! What happened to people ringing in to say their street lights were out? Or MUA driving around when it is dark to not only see when the street lights are out, but where there are areas that need lighting which only become evident when it is dark. As at this time of year we have shortened daylight, you would think they could do it without incurring overtime! The world seems to have gone mad! Sorry I forgot, its the Isle of Man where apparently you can!
  15. She is another "import" from across (in this case from north of the English border along with the estuarial dulcet tones that Billy Connolly fans will be familiar with), who "knows it all" and was always wanting to show us locals how it should be done!
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