Positive Action Group - Possan Jantys Jarrooagh

Open, accountable government, rigorous control of public finances, and a fairer society for all.

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Party Politics Debate

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One of the aims of the Junior Chamber of Commerce (JCC) in the Isle of Man is 'to identify and address topical issues affecting members and the IOM". To that end the JCC staged a debat on Party Politics in the Isle of Man on 30th October 2015.

Liberal Vannin Leader Kate Beecroft MHK spoke in favour and was opposed by Chris Robertshaw MHK. Both speakers gave their kind permission to publish their speeches here.

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 November 2015 13:39

Smaller, Smarter Government

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small-governmentIn a recent series of articles for the Isle of Man Examiner, Chris Robertshaw presented his case for what he refers to 'Smaller, Smarter' Government.

The views are of course his own.

These are all available for download below and we would most welcome comment.

If you'd like to contribute to our 'opinion' strand, please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2015 22:54

Learning from Mistakes: Black Box thinking

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Observe-Interpret-Intervene-CycleSince becoming Chief Minister, Allan Bell has regularly stated that government must be prepared to take risks. This sentiment has also been supported by Minister for Policy and Reform, John Shimmin and DED Minister, Laurence Skelly. In preparing the ground for the adoption of a £50 million Economic Development package, all three warned that there could well be some failures within the various projects supported under the scheme.

The converse of this argument is for those in power also need to recognise when they have goofed and what's more to learn from the experience. 

Times columnist Mathew Syed succinctly makes the case for a positive attitude to failure in the "Soap Box" feature on BBC 2's Daily Politicson 28.10.15:

Last Updated on Thursday, 12 November 2015 22:50

Another User Agreement? Under no circumstances!

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steampacketcrashMany people amazingly do not appear to appreciate fully the vital importance of our sea link.

It was this fact that prompted me some twenty five or thirty years ago to propose that the IoM Government should purchase the Company. A proposal that many other people have also suggested over the years.

This could still be done to-day for the IOMSPCo Ltd does not appear to have much collateral value.

Last Updated on Thursday, 12 November 2015 22:38

Voting and Digital Inclusion

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Online-votingIf it is determined that the public should be involved in the election of the Legislative Council then the opportunity to move to on line voting should be seized.  It is a stated objective of Tynwald that the future should include more use of IT facilities to enhance communication and lower cost.  Of course not everybody is either willing or capable of using a computer for voting so any introduction must cater for what is assuredly now a minority in the Island.
There are many well developed on-line voting systems available and the wheel has very much been invented so it would be the task of ITD to select the best after detailed and destructive security testing.  There would be a natural leaning towards the London based Electoral Reform Society but their prominent position attracts very significant fees and there are several other systems with equally strong experience and high security.  For example examine the facilities available in the BigPulse.com application which cover the dissemination of manifestos, postal voting STV etc.  The cost for 50,000 electors (current 48000+ say 2000 commissioners et al missed off) is only £7,000 for all elections held within 12 months.
Last Updated on Sunday, 18 October 2015 18:57

Two tier Planning System - Rich pickings for some!

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richer poorer

I've written before about the emergence, in the last few years, of a two tier planning system - one for the very rich and one for the rest of us.

Never was that more apparent than with a recent decision by CoMin to reject an independent planning inspector's recommendation to refuse PA 15/00124 at Meary Voar, Santon.

Last Updated on Saturday, 17 October 2015 19:25

Submission to the Select Committee Reviewing the Committee System

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Please find our Submission to the Select Committee Reviewing the Committee System April 2015 attached.


PAG public meeting: Towards Smaller, Smarter Government

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PAG Public Meeting

'Towards Smaller, Smarter Government'

A talk by

Chris Robertshaw MHK

7.30pm Monday 28th September 2015

Manx Legion Club. Market Hill, Douglas



Last Updated on Thursday, 17 September 2015 13:13

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