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code99

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code99 last won the day on August 21 2021

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  1. Following the initial report of the Tribunal, one cannot help but to conclude that H Ewart (in Will Greenhow’s department) is either lazy or incompetent or both. I remember from the earlier days in the pandemic how dismissive she was of Dr Glover’s expertise, possibly because she herself did not have nous to properly evaluate/ understand Dr Glover’s scientifically based contributions. The only thing HE was seemingly good at was parroting the Public Health of England’s advice. If we have learnt anything from the Covid-pandemic, it is that when it comes to a public health crisis, the Island is going to follow the UK. If the UK did not purchase vaccines the IOM would not have vaccinated its population, etc. If this is really the case, then why do we need a highly paid, but for all practical purposes, symbolic role of ‘IOM Public Health Director’? It seems to me that all we need is a liason officer with PHE, who could be working within Manx Care and could be paid a fraction of HE’s annual salary. Over time, many services to the Island’s residents have declined, including those services that make the IOM ‘a nice place to live’, from a quality-of-life perspective. E.g., most school kids’ morning swimming sessions at the NSC have been cancelled (apparently the Department for Education can no longer afford these basics!), and the funding for the Wildlife Park is under threat. At the same time, the IOMG persists with daft projects that have only limited support in the community – the most obvious case being the horse trams on Douglas Prom. Allegedly, people are leaving the Island due to our sub-standard medical services. Soon, I suspect some parents will be leaving due to our sub-standard education. As much as Will Greenhow’s departure looks like a positive move, overall, we cannot hold unelected CS/PS to account. It is the IOMG’s responsibility to get a grip on things and to lead/ manage a public service that provides residents with the services they need. Our current political system does not provide any meaningful means of holding the government to account and/or to scrutinise its policies. It is clear that there is no public appetite on the Island for the party-based political system. Hence, other alternatives must be considered, such as backbenchers forming a ‘shadow government’ with their own leader and spokespersons. Admittedly, the coalition of independent backbenchers would not be nearly as strong and reliable as a formal ‘opposition’, but anything is better than what we have now. For the (future) good of us all, holding public PAC hearings is helpful, but something much more substantial needs to be done.
  2. Will the UK follow? https://www.theguardian.com/media/2022/may/21/canada-announces-sanctions-on-alexander-lebedev-russia-ukraine-report
  3. They're desperate. Department for Extraneous.
  4. Of course, DA should resign; both as a Treasury Minister and as an MHK. But he won’t (he should’ve immediately resigned following the revelations about the appalling IOMG ‘sanctioned’ treatment that Dr Glover had to endure). The inconvenient truth that he, along with a few others, is that they should have never been elected to the HoKs in the first place. At some point the Island must have an honest debate about our political system and the methods of governance, but until then our politicians will carry on with what even Abraham Lincoln did not think was possible – to keep trying to fool all of the people all of the time.
  5. The self-serving malicious venal behaviour of the people in positions of power in the former DHSC, who were entrusted with the responsibility of managing public health, has finally been exposed. Hurrah for that! However, this sickening episode is much more than the despicable behaviour of a couple of ‘rogue’ individuals - it was the systemic chronically deficient behaviour of an appalling administration. Yesterday (all) IOM residents, who followed this story, buried their last remaining illusions that the Island had a competent accountable government, which operated professionally in accordance with the rule of law. The comparison made with how Russian politics functions must send shivers down the spine of any reasonable and decent person. AC will be making a statement next week. I expect him to say ‘’Lessons will be learnt, and that the culture of government must improve etc, blah blah blah…”, as if the government was a bunch of school children who needed to learn a few crucial lessons about life so that they could behave as functioning adults when entered the world of work. What I don’t expect is for him to address either the insidious failures that occurred not just with the senior administrators, but also their incompetent political masters. Surely, AC must question the competence of the then Health Minister who was, in theory, politically responsible for this entire fiasco. How is it that the same minister is allowed to be in charge of Treasury at a time when the government’s finances are under unprecedented pressures - pressure that will only increase over the next 12 months? I also do not expect AC to announce any specific measures, which would result in tangible improvements in either the ethos or culture of government. So, what is to be done to remedy these 'cultural deficiencies'? IMHO, a complete overhaul of every aspect of IOMG/PS/CS, and an independent investigation into the roles of HQ/DA in this sordid saga must be launched with an immediate effect. As confidence in Island’s political system and public institutions has been so dreadfully shattered by what has gone on here, I am also partial to an emergency IOM GE to be called by spring next year at the latest. This time the only candidate that will be guaranteed my vote is those who will demand nothing less than absolute transparency from the IOMG, once they are elected. I understand that some people will view my ‘solutions’ as another gigantic waste of time and taxpayers’ money, but without drastic reforms ‘to save ourselves from ourselves’ we might need to be managed by Westminster officials. If that dosen’t cut out the rot, then we may need to be absorbed into the UK. Sadly, I cannot see any other meaningful way forward.
  6. Great news at last. TBH, I don't even care who 'claims credit for it'.
  7. In the meantime: "Russian forces shoot and kill 10 people standing in line for bread, US Embassy in Kyiv says." Utterly despicable beneath contempt Putin and his henchmen - The Hague is coming for you!
  8. There is an interesting article on the CNN website that kind of intimates where Putin's head is (other than in his ass). It seems that Putin's verve for the Russian homophobic Orthodox Church, and that Church's upset over the decision in 2018 by parts of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to sever ties with the Russian Orthodox Church, could be partially responsible for his barbaric invasion of Ukraine. This all harks back to reestablishing the 'greatness of Russia' during medieval times. Sounds familiar? If I had to choose one thing that I agree with Karl Marx, it would be religion is the 'opium of the masses', and now apparently religion has become the opium of the Kremlin. https://edition.cnn.com/2022/03/14/europe/patriarch-kirill-putin-spiritual-battle-intl-cmd/index.html
  9. According to Sergey Lavrov they want Ukraine, Alaska and California. Pity they don't want Trump.
  10. It is my understanding that only UK residents and taxpayers can be Members of the House of Lords. I therefore infer that the Baroness is not technically an IOM resident, so why does our media keep fawning over her all the time? As it has been pointed out, the Island does not need any more bad press. If she is an IOM resident for tax purposes i.e. spends more than 6 months per year here, then surely she cannot sit in the House of Lords.
  11. https://www.theguardian.com/media/2022/mar/13/michael-gove-defends-evgeny-lebedev-new-questions-raised-about-peerage Lebedev Sr. bestowed his wealth on his son (a friend of BoJo). Don’t all rich people bestow wealth on their offspring? Lebedev Jr. says that he is not “some agent of Russia”. I believe him. (Just like I believe Philby when he says he is not a Soviet spy – what has the world become if one cannot trust the word of a gentleman?) As Lebedev Sr. is a billionaire, I find it fascinating how lucrative it must be working for KGB. Who knew? I assume most former KGB employees are either billionaires or dead. (I am now convinced “Killing Eve” is a true story). I therefore hazard a guess that our spooks are envious that they are not getting the same financial rewards slogging away for the British security services (other than ‘paltry’ old-age pensions); and their so-called ‘security concerns’ regarding Lebedev(s) such as that Lebedev Sr. “was in KGB as far back as 2013” whilst being a part-proprietor of the Evening Standard from 21 January 2009 is just spiteful hogwash, IMHO. https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/sep/09/hunt-the-banker-confessions-of-a-russian-ex-oligarch-alexander-lebedev-review But even if it was true, what harm could it have possibly done? Many people these days work two jobs just to make ends meet – that Italian castle where British glitterati like to party (including Victoria Coren Mitchell presumably with her left-leaning husband David, or is he?) won’t manage itself.
  12. I went on the protest marches against the war in Iraq. I condemn the Russian military bombing of Ukrainian hospitals now as much as I condemned the Russian military bombing hospitals in Syria. Wars waged against innocent civilians are unforgivable. What’s happening in Ukraine is not a picnic - the only way Ukrainians can defend their country is to kill Russian soldiers. Unfortunately, as long as the Russians keep attacking, Ukrainians have no other option. They could of course surrender and become a Russian puppet state like Belarus (no doubt some cynics in the West would welcome this solution so that their beloved oligarchs can rise like Lazarus from the ‘financial death’ to quickly be ‘back to business as usual’), but this option, at least for now, seems deeply unpopular among Ukrainians. I predict that even if the Ukrainian army/ government decided to lay down their weapons, there would potentially be ongoing fierce resistance from the Ukrainian people (circa 40 million), who, in the main, understandably feel nothing but hatred for their Russian invaders. This conflict could go on for many years. Should that happen then there will also be no peace in the rest of Europe either.
  13. Yeap. I stand by my 'Putin is a war criminal' assertion.
  14. I really like this thread. Everyone is free to express their opinions without fear or favour. If only they could do that in Russia e.g. calling this barbaric invasion a war without the risk of being imprisoned for 15 years. I suppose Russians are used to this - they have come to accept that Russian opposition leaders are customarily either get bumped off or get incarcerated.
  15. Russia’s foreign ministry has confirmed the use of the TOS-1A weapon system in Ukraine - these are thermobaric weapons. Thermobaric weapons are diabolical. There is a serious concern that Russia could deploy chemical weapons in Kyiv. Putin is a war criminal. When this war is finally over, he and his henchmen must face the ICJ. The West cannot allow him and his executioners to crawl back into our societies as if nothing has ever happened. Western democracies must wean ourselves off dirty Russian roubles permanently!
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