Yn Pabyr Seyr

Issue 27 - January 2003

Yn Pabyr Seyr is published by Mec Vannin, the Manx Nationalist Party. All articles are copyright Mec Vannin unless otherwise stated. Mec Vannin grants permission to reproduce articles from Yn Pabyr Seyr provided that the source is credited. 

Lieutenant Governor - Cringle's call for name-change misguided

The following e-mail has been sent to the President of Tynwald, Mr. Noel Cringle, who has called for the UK's colonial representative to be renamed. The contents are self explanatory.


Dear Mr. Cringle,

We note with interest your recent comments regarding the title of the Lieutenant Governor of the Isle of Man, The English Queen's permanent representative in the UK's colony, the Isle of Man.

Before making further comment, I reproduce for you some of our more recent material on the subject:

Lieutenant Governor (From Yn Pabyr Seyr - January 2001)

In the wake of the appointment of the new Lieutenant Governor, Mec Vannin has written to the Chief Minister asking him to have the situation properly addressed. The text of the letter is reproduced below. Mr Gelling has responded by passing the letter to Tynwald's Constitutional Committee. Since The will of Tynwald was clearly ignored in relation to this matter and the UK Home Office continues to demonstrate its total contempt for our entitlement for self-government, he may as well have passed it straight to the waste paper bin and cut out the middle man. Until the central figures in Manx politics realise what they are supposed to be doing (running a country), Mannin is forever to be consigned to being, in reality, a constitional anomily of English regional government.

Letter to Chief Minister in the wake of Ian MacFadyen's appointment.

Dear Mr Gelling 

The recent controversy surrounding the appointment of the Lieutenant Governor serves yet again to demonstrate that we are, irrespective of any claims to the contrary by any party, a mere colony of the UK which, in turn, increasingly means England. This is a deplorable situation which cannot be accepted by any body claiming the title "government." 

Though understandable on one hand, those who advocate the appointment of a Manx person to the position have essentially missed the point: The Lieutenant Governor is the UK's representative, here at the UK's bidding to do the UK's work. Any quaint nonsense about being the Lord of Mann's representative is just that: Nonsense. This country is ulimately administered by the UK Home Office(*) for the UK's ultimate benefit and any Manx person in the role will be called upon to act in a manner that is a betrayal of their own people and country. The Lieutenant Governor is not simply a titular role and this fact was driven home by the Lieutenant Governor's role in maintaining a matter of national importance (the "Edwards Review") as secret from the Manx government. 

Until such time as this country has reaquired its rightful independence from the colonising power, the concept of democracy incontravertably dictates that we should have a representative of Mannin in Westminster, not a representative of Westminster in Mannin. 

To this end, we call upon you to use your position and influence to properly direct the development the Manx government into a legally recognisable constitutional reality. A logical step would be to have the position of Lieutenant Governor scrapped and replaced by a Manx Envoy to Westminster.

(*) Now the Lord Chamberlain's Office

What did he do wrong? (From "Yn Pabyr Seyr" January 2000)

Jack Corrin thought he had done all the right things in his career and couldn't be passed over on his application for the post of lieutenant governor. There are two huge big dirty blots in his copy book, however, 
that can never be expunged. 

First and foremost, he is Manx. The English administer us as they always have - a colony - and everyone knows that you don't put a native in charge of a colony. 

Secondly, he clapped in the abbey (you know, when they buried the Princess of Essex). People who want to work for Bizzy Lizzy shouldn't applaud politically charged challenges to her authority. 

He may have committed treason in the eyes of the English crown, but at least by not getting the job he will not be called upon to act as a traitor to his own people.


To continue, you will appreciate from the foregoing that we do not regard a Lieutenant Governor under any title as an acceptable entity. You, more than anyone else, are aware that on our most symbolically important day of the year, you must give up your seat for the governor so there must be no confusion or misapprehension as to this man's place or role.

Whereas the functions of the UK's Lieutenant Governor may have been partly delegated to other people, his primary function remains. Consequently, playing around with titles is quite meaningless.

We are sure that you share our desire to see the government in the Isle of Man develop, at some point, into the government of the Isle of Man and, to this end, we would ask that you look more critically at the function rather than the title of the UK's overseer of the Isle of Man. Nor must people be misled about our colonial status vis a vis the UK, particularly in our own country, where a misnomer would mislead people into believing that we are less subject to UK rule than we really are and thus hamper proper constitutional development.

Yours sincerely, etc.

Corkill scared of Freedom of Information

Attempts to uncover the truth behind the dealings that led to a private housing development arising out of what was supposed to have been a tourism based project are currently stalled because the private interests involved are challenging the legal right of the Inquiry, Chaired by an English QC to investigate their accounts and tax affairs.

Despite a self imposed reporting embargo on the affair by the Island's only mass circulation newspaper, it has been impossible to keep the lid on some of the less than commendable actions of the politicians, civil servants and business interests involved. It is not suprising that the Inquiry is enjoying less than whole-hearted support from several quarters and the legal challenge was fairly predictable.

On the political side, Mr. Peter Karran MHK for Onchan, who was successful in having the Inquiry instituted, has since been subject to a campaign of harassment and vilification by certain other members of the government in the Isle of Man. This ultimately resulted in the Speaker of the House of Keys, Mr. Tony Brown, whose own involvement in the Mount Murray planning fiasco has not yet been fully uncovered, unilaterally preparing a "report" into Mr. Karran's asking of questions in the House of Keys. There continues to be conflicting interpretations of the findings of this report and it appears to be little more than a crude attempt at intimidating both Mr. Karran and any other non-establishment 
members of the Island's House of Keys from asking awkward questions.

An attempt to establish a Freedom of Information Act in the Island in the mid 90s failed and, despite the government's penchant for blindly following UK practice when it is convenient to do so, never fails to find an increased sense of independence when its own activities could be hindered or opened to scrutiny. Hence, recent UK legislation that effectively ends the Official Secrets Act as it stood has not even been mentioned by the government in the Isle of Man. Indeed, even those elected to Local Authority (remit: street lighting and dog-fouling) are required to sign up to an Act extended to the Isle of Man that is now effectively defunct in the originating jurisdiction!

Mec Vannin, whose own submission to the Tynwald Committee that investigated the need for Freedom of Information was extensive and commended at the time, has written to Mr. Corkill in the light of comments he made on Manx Radio in relation to Mr. Peter Karran. The letter, sent in November, has not yet been acknowledged. Perhaps he's having difficulty with some aspect of it. The letter is reproduced below:

Dear Mr. Corkill,

In the wake of Mr. Tony Brown's "report" into Mr. Peter Karran's asking questions in the House of Keys, you spoke on Manx 
Radio of a motion you brought attempting to create a more "transparent" media. Unfortunately, it doesn't matter what sort of media we have, it's meaningless until we have a transparent government, as I'm sure you will agree. In the continued absence of any meaningful freedom of information legislation, both media and politicians are utterly dependent upon second-hand information and rumour. As a result, the media is frequently regarded as little more than a government propoganda tool and MHKs maybe forced to ask questions which are similarly based on either second-hand information or rumour, no matter how well-founded it may be.

Similarly, in the absence of any requirement for members of Government to give answers or have the information they supply 
independently scrutinised, there is nothing to give the public confidence that answers given by members of government are open and honest.

In light of your comments on Manx Radio, I look forward to your giving your commitment to having meaningful freedom of 
information legislation introduced. This would mean that the media would be able to report information first-hand, rather than rely on second-hand stories, and people like Mr Karran could get answers to questions without resorting to asking questions in the Keys which invariably meet with the hackneyed bluff of "commercial confidentiality."

Yours, etc.

Planning Review pre-emptive and premature

In September, the Department of Local Government called for public comment and submission into the Planning Process. This was claimed to be the first such reveiw in 20 years although this matter was actually dealt with in some detail in the DLGE "Planning for the Future" consultative document to which Mec Vannin made extensive submission. This review was undertaken during the early 1990s, less than 10 years ago.

Currently, there is an independent inquiry into the planning process and how it led to a private estate being developed in a rural area: The Mount Murray inquiry has revealed gross abuse of the planning system but the newspaper monopoly in the Island is refusing to cover the disturbing revelations of the inquiry.

Mec Vannin felt that the timing of the planning review was singularly inappropriate and expressed this view to the DLGE as detailed in a letter, reproduced below:

Dear Sirs,

We understand that the DLGE intends taking public submission in regard to a potential review of planning procedure.

Unfortunately, the details of this are not available at the government website but, in any case, we feel that such a review is ill-considered in light of the on-going "Mount Murray" inquiry: It is patently obvious from evidence given to date that there have been serious failiures of the system as intended and, until the inquiry is concluded and the 
its findings made public in full, such a review would be made in ignorance of the facts.

Consequently, Mec Vannin calls upon the Department to delay such a review and call for public submission until the inquiry's findings have been fully publicised.

Yours, etc.

The Department refused to wait for the outcome of the Inquiry, and you may draw your own conclusions as to why. Consequently, Mec Vannin did not waste time making submission to an excersise that has no credibility. What is the point in procedures if they are so openly ignored?

The Rabbit's still  on the loose....

As he comes to the end of his first calendar year in office, Richard Corkill might like to reflect on the real meaning of democracy on the Isle of Man.  But then perhaps he wouldn't. Because, from where some of us are standing, democracy on the Island doesn't look too healthy.

Let's take one example that the Corkill administration afforded us within its first few precious weeks in office: The purchase of the Nunnery. And let's ask a very simple question. How many people knew in advance? In those few frantic weeks before the 2001 election, how many people actually knew that the Government intended to secure the purchase of the property the moment that it was safely back in power?

I didn't know. I didn't see it in anyone's manifesto. I would never have suspected that the Government had already undertaken to guarantee a loan for 5 million to purchase a property worth 3 million, using a paper company that had been set up years before for the purpose, which it had conveniently turned into a charity. And I would never have thought that DLGE would then purchase the fields back again through the land bank, regardless of the fact that they already appeared in the balance book as an asset against the original loan.

My suspicion is that nobody knew. Nobody except the Council of  Ministers, the HSBC, and the Truly Reverend Graham Ferguson Lacey. The most obvious conclusion is that the electorate were not meant to know. Had it been public knowledge, then the players would have had to do it properly, going cap in hand to Tynwald for the money, instead of laundering the purchase piecemeal through the Department of Education budget (which is what is currently  happening).

In the United Kingdom, they complain of Stealth Taxes. On the Isle of Man, we could complain about something more wholesale: Stealth Government. The number of Government adventures that have actually had a popular mandate is, I suspect, vanishingly small. Many have gone almost unannounced until the contracts were irreversibly signed.

Very few people who watched the expensive new diesels fire up at Pulrose in  the early 90s could have foreseen that, within less that a decade we would  be taking out a mortgage/bond for stg50 million on an undersea cable link, stg20 million plus on a meandering gas pipeline, and stg80 million on a new CCGT power station that, according to one UK expert, should have cost half of that.

Very few of the people I know wanted the stg250 million Iris scheme, the stg42 million Incinerator, or the Douglas ring road to service them. But then perhaps I mix in the wrong company. everybody I know wanted the money  invested on organic composting, recycling and public transport.

So why is the Isle of Man Government so reluctant to confide in the electorate, or to take into account of the wishes of the Manx people. Why does is choose instead to concuss them into submission with the Council of  Ministers block vote.

Is it just plain arrogance? It could be in some examples. In the case of the Incinerator, the contract with United Waste appears to have been signed 6 months before the Public Inquiry approved the stack; either an extraordinary ability to foresee the outcome, or a yawning disregard for it either way.

Or is it fear of public opinion? The Government has known for years about the Douglas Ring Road. But, apart from some noises about the widening of Vicarage Road, there has been very little public consultation. I have always half expected them to resurrect their drawings for the flyover across Braddan Hills. If they did, I think that we would be the last to know.

Just as business fails when retailers lie about the goods they market, so democracy fails when elected representatives fail to come clean about their intentions. Democracy is about mandates. If you go into government supporting one point of view, then do an about-turn in government just to become a minister, then you have ceased either to honour your own views or to represent those of your constituents. (Before he got into power, you may remember, Mr Corkill opposed incineration.)  When the collective view of the Council of Ministers becomes more important that the views of the electorate, then mandates are worthless.

Democracy is also about public access to public information. Mr Corkill himself can partly take credit for the latest culture in his administration, that of hiding behind commercial confidentiality. In a recent example, Mr Corkill was asked by Mr Karran to name the beneficial owners of certain offshore companies that receive an income from the Government. But he refused to disclose the information, maintaining that it was commercially confidential.

Can the Directors of a Company refuse to disclose the beneficiaries in their accounts to their shareholders? We, as taxpayers, are 
shareholders in Isle of Man PLC. So surely we should be given the same rights. For all we know, the Chief Minister could be happily dishing out half the government contracts to his brother in law and we would be none the wiser. An absurd notion, perhaps, but quite possible in the current climate of confidentiality.

As long as the Isle of Man Government continues to conceal its intentions with regard to such projects as the Nunnery, as long as it continues to treat public opinion as an afterthought to be shrugged off, as long as it continues to hide its dealings behind such devices as commercial confidentiality of the Official Secrets Act, and as long as it continues bludgeon the parliamentary process with its block vote, then democracy on  the Isle of Man will be dead.

Manx Rabbit

Churchill v Christian

Even in the face of detailed evidence as to Illiam Dhone's (William Christian's) actions and intentions from the time he raised the militia against Charlotte de Tremouille up to the time he was murdered by her twisted and ingratious off-spring, there is still a body of people who continue to level the false allegations instituted at the time to blacken his name, or feel somehow compelled to undermine his actions. The notion of having a national hero is regarded as positively dangerous to many English settlers here who have had an easy time in getting collaboration in ensuring that too many Manx people are kept tugging their forelocks and regarding the English as their masters.

Isn't it funny how no such problem exists when talking about their own national figures. Take the recent "greatest Briton" (for which you must read English) nonsense. Who won? A great thinker? An inventor whose ideas furthered humanity? A founder of some great and lasting movement? A person who put their fellow man before themselves? Of course not. They chose Winston Churchill, a lying, untrustworthy, xenophobic, war-mongerer whose only lasting legacy is the partition of Ireland and thousands of deaths of people that the UK claims as its own.

He was an enthusiastic supporter of the campaign against the Boers (when the English saved the Nazis some time by inventing concentration camps for them), he rose to the higher ranks of politics through back-stabbing, manipulation, and double-cross. So shallow an individual was he that he tried to buy-off Michael Collins, a man who stood head and shoulders above him in any positive quality you care to name, by inferring that he would be rewarded with a position of power within the British Empire if he turned traitor. Naturally, Churchill was unsuccesful.

Had it not been for the opportunity offered by the second world war, he would have remained nothing more than a minor historical figure except in Ireland where his and Lloyd-George's names are still remembered with the disgust they deserve. Even his part in Hitler's downfall has been massively over-played and he was no friend to the British troops, who he was perfectly happy to treat as disposable. His bombastic mind-set made him an ally of Arthur Harris's wasteful and unproductive area-bombing campaign and, whilst Stalin was genuinely paranoid, he was right to be wary of Churchill - a double-cross was always a real possibility.

As a military mind, he was lacking in both imagination and tactical expertise. Infact, his only real strength was the ability to carefully construct one-line quotes. In this he had no flair or spontaneity - the famous "never so much..." and "we'll fight them on the beaches..." quotes were, infact, re-works of one-liners already in his repetoir and even then, they were not written in response to an event but written in the hope than they would fit some future event. Self-evidently, had he been so "great," the English people would have returned his party to power when the coalition dissolved simply to have him as prime-minister.

No. His only real achievement was to instigate and aggrevate a bloody civil war in Ireland and assist in creating a statelet founded on bigotry that would result in thousands more deaths up to this day. That, however, is not the history that suits English governments or, indeed, people. The truth is often unpalletable.

Mec Vannin doesn't try to deify Illiam Dhone. We are republicans and he, unlike some of his close relatives, was a royalist. He worked closely and well for the English Lord of Mann but never forgot who and what he was. When faced with a conflict, a deeper loyalty emerged. At his rigged trial, he displayed the contempt it deserved and gave no evidence: Lesser men would have pleaded for their lives. We have no difficulty or moral conflict in remembering this man for the actions that saved our independence. Those who undermine him should question themselves more closely.

Meanwhile, Richard Corkill has revealed how much he would have liked to had Churchill as a Christmas dinner guest. Erm, that's really interesting, Richard.


The following poem was originally in Manx but it's English rendition is worth printing to demonstrate how things have simply got worse.

A rendering into verse of W. J. Cain's literal translation of Kennish's "Dobberan Chengey ny Mayrey" published in 1840.(See A. W. Moore's "Manx Ballads," page 142).

I WALKED on Snaefell all alone
When night's black banner fell unfurled
Across the skies, and floated down
Over the Manx side of the world.

And following darkness came the rest
That God gives man to comfort him
His peace to those of troubled breast,
His sleep to those of wearied limb.

But to my heart no quiet came
Only the darkness brooded there,
To see my country brought to shame
By those who should have cherished her.

And while I pondered Mannin's ills
The change, the strife, the suffering,
Behold! a woman on the hills,
Running towards me through the ling.

Old, old and gray, bowed down with years,
Her tattered garments wet with dew,
Her ancient visage wet with tears,
She rose upon my startled view.

The heart within me shook with grief
To see the hapless creature's plight,
For she had known ('twas my belief,)
More honour than was hers that night.

As thus she came I heard her sigh :
"What woe is mine, what misery!
Despised, abandoned thus to die,
By those who should have cherished me."

Each little bird had found its nest,
Each lamb had found its mother's side;
The sea rose up in dark unrest
Beneath the night-wind's trampling stride.

The sun had set; a shadowy veil
Crept westward over dreem and pairk;
The moon had spread her silver sail,
And drifted glorious up the dark.

On Snaefell's grassy slope we sate,
I and the ancient woman there: "
O Manxman, hear me now relate
Why thus I wander, thus despair.

"I am thy dying Mother-tongue, 
The first speech of this Island race,
Dying, because of the deep wrong
Of their neglect and my disgrace.

" 'Twas I who kept the strangers out,
And kept unspoiled our Island home:
'Tis I could put them still to rout,
And spare my children grief to come.

"But now up every hill and glen,
On Cardle Vooar, in "Tholt-y-will,
Come companies of Englishmen,
Their multitudes increasing still.

"From Jurby southward to the Sound,
Mad as the beasts the croghan stings,
The Manxmen a strange taste have found
For English words and English things"

As never their forefathers used,
Who loved their land and cherished me,
And in their wisdom still refused
The stranger's gold and flattery.

"Ah ! would chat those who yet remain
Of loyal heart and loyal speech
Would rise upon the Saxon strain,
And drive them seaward from the beach;

"And turn again to field and boat
The simpler tasks of former days
From the bewildering world remote,
Contented in their fathers' ways.

"O men of Mannin, trust not those
Who come with gifts but stay to rule;
Their gold is but the bribe of foes,
Their speech a plaything for the fool.

"But I, forgot, must follow this
The dusty pathway to the tomb;
For see, my head how gray it is
With age, and grief, and nearing doom!"


Illiam Dhone Commemoration 2003 - English oration by Roy Kennaugh

Today we commemorate the treacherous death of Illiam Dhone 340 years ago. A true Manxman who recognised the importance of protecting the rights of the Manx people; the right to self-determination and national identity. But after all these years have we achieved a credible position of independence and is our national identity still under threat ?

We cannot stand still and it is inevitable that the way of life on the Island will evolve but it is the pace and direction of change that concerns many people. Part of this change will be influenced by the relatively large number of people that have  migrated to the Island recently. Many of these people have moved here for genuine reasons, for employment and to enjoy the safe and scenic environment. Some will integrate and provide valuable contributions to their new community, making this Island a better place to live. However, there are others who have come here purely for their own self-interests. Some of which are prepared to exploit weak government and weak regulations in order to satisfy their greed for money and it is questionable  of what real benefit these people are to the Island. Unfortunately there are Manxmen who fall into this group, who are prepared to exploit, speculate and sell their souls for thirty pieces of silver.

We have a proliferation of businesses which seem to be prepared to exploit situations in order to maximise profits, with employees becoming slaves to target setting and performance management and we all become victims of the longtail race so evident across the water. People of Mann enjoy full employment while you can but beware of the people who put money before everything else, job security is not high on their agenda. 

I share the  belief of many people  that the relatively safe, friendly and easy-going way of life is threatened. As small communities expand rapidly with a surge of new residents, there is the danger of developing  dormitory towns with diminishing community spirit.

The village way of life where people know each other and have the time to talk to each other is disappearing and this is a quality of life that should not be lost.

An ever-growing population has an impact on the quality of life and the government must decide and justify what would  be an ideal population size for the  Island. Many people believe that the current population is already big enough and that the quality of life has already been compromised. Tynwald has rejected a referendum on the subject of residency control but it should not ignore the wishes of the people who elected them.

To many people the Isle of Mann is just another English county. This mentality is reinforced by practices such as playing  "God save the Queen as the National" Anthem at the Tynwald ceremony, Civic Services and other functions.

The government adopts English legislation with sometimes minor alterations and usually compares its performance in areas such as recycling of waste and school class sizes with standards of England , the ‘dirty man of Europe instead of comparing with and aspiring to much better models. The Department of Education has adopted a slightly modified version of the English National Curriculum which was established for political rather than educational reasons. A curriculum that is prescribed, reducing choice and driven by an obsession for testing. Education of young people should be about providing opportunities for them to achieve their potential and preparing them for life and the world of work. Schools are becoming examination machines, putting unnecessary pressure on both pupils and teachers.There is much more to education than exam results.

We have greater autonomy than the oppressive days of the Derbys, and  the Government must have the courage to shake off the English domination and establish itself in the international arena. But if this is to become a reality it has to demonstrate competence, strength and integrity. Although there are external challenges ahead the Government must look closely at its 
performance on local issues. It has been successful  at increasing income but less astute at spending the money wisely, and to many people it appears that public money has been squandered on extravagant projects. Performance in certain areas are open to question, particularly in the planning system, where there is still no strategic plan and decisions appear inconsistent and sometimes illogical. Its record on waste management  and housing is short-sighted and complacent. Its  stance on Sellafield and the B.B.C. is timid at best; and  when it gives preference to bathing water rather than drinking water quality, its priorities are definitely suspect. The government can set the lead in fiscal policy but ‘drags its feet on social and environmental legislation.

The Human Rights Act, to be implemented this year, is likely to open up a can of worms when applied to residency and work permit policy. It also requires government to be open and transparent and it should aim to  eliminate undemocratic influences.

A sense of identity is vital to a thriving community and although the way of life is naturally evolving it is important that the healthy components are retained to complement the changes. There is a real risk of losing the Manx identity despite the heartening revival of the Manx language. We should encourage our young people to learn about our history and maintain the best of our culture in our changing society. But, perhaps more importantly, is the threat to our relaxed and caring way of life. We should work together to encourage a fair and non-elitist society which puts people before money and provides a safe environment for all to grow up in, without prejudice. We must not jeopardise the quality of life we enjoy for the sake of a higher standard of living. Politicians should note the words of T.E.Brown reported in a letter to the press recently, Be proud of your Island, don't do anything that will injure the character, Manxmen are capable of progress, but let them progress as Manxmen.

Finally, a call for this government to make the 2nd January  a national holiday to highlight the importance of a national martyr and to emphasise that we are a nation in our own right.

Gura mie eu

Laa Cooinaghtyn Illiam Dhone 2003 - Oraid Ghaelgagh liorish Pawl ap Rhosier

Gura mie eu son cheet gys shoh dy chooinaghtyn Manninagh dooie mooar, Illiam y Cristeen, ta er enney dooin ny share myr Illiam Dhone. Ta shin er jeet ry-cheilley ayns cooinaghtyn jeh dooinney ren shassoo seose noi niart as ommidys ny Ben-hairn Charlotte, as ren sauail reiltys as seyrsnys Vannin. 

Ta shin lhiastynagh da son seyrsnys yn Ellan nish. Agh, cre'n fa lhisagh Mannin ve seyr? Shoh yn freggyrt, er-yn-oyr dy vel ee ny hellan er-lheh, ny cheer Cheltiagh as anchasley rish Sostyn as yn Reeriaght Unnaneysit. Agh yn boirey t'ayn jiu, cre cho anchasley rish Sostyn t'ee ec y traa t'ayn?

Ayns lhing Illiam Dhone s'baghtal v'eh dy row Mannin ny cheer er-lheh; va ny Manninee loayrt Gaelg as va ny Sostnee loayrt Baarle. Nish, ta reddyn anchasley. Tra ta mee jeeaghyn mygeayrt-y-moom er yn Ellan cha nel mee fakin sleih loayrt ass y Ghaelg ta mee fakin sleih loayrt ass y Vaarle. Ta mee fakin Baarle screeut mygeayrt yn Ellan, cha nel mee fakin monney Gaelg Vanninagh. C'raad ta'n ellan Cheltiagh va ny laare lettyraght as bardaght sy chennearish?

T'ee foast ayn, agh t'ee follit as she possan feer veg jeh persoonyn ta freayll yn chengey bio. T'ad coontit dy ve beggan corragh as keoie liorish yn chooid smoo dy 'leih agh she adsyn ta dy firrinagh freayll Mannin seyr as t'ad toilliu ny smoo arrym as moylley. Ta ymmodee sleih gra 'oh lhisagh ad freayll yn Ghaelg bio' agh t'ad ro harroogh ny gyn yn yeearree dy ynsaghey yn chengey ad hene. She yn cowrey share jeh Manninaghys ta'n chengey, cha nod oo gra nagh vel yn Ghaelg Manninagh.

Ta traa ry-heet y Ghlare Vanninagh ayns laueyn daa phossan dy 'leih as she yn Reiltys ta'n chied phossan. Ta reddyn foddey ny share na v'ad; ta cowraghyn enmyn straiddey daa-hengagh gaase ny smoo cadjin ooilley yn traa as ta Gaelg ry-gheddyn ayns ny scoillyn, agh cha nel shen agh toshiaght. Lhisagh yn Ghaelg ve ayns dy chooilley nhee as ayns dy chooiley voayl.

Tra ta sleih cheet jeh'n vaatey lhisagh yn Ghaelg ve yn chied red t'ad fakin. Lhisagh dy chooilley troggal theayagh ve daa-hengagh dy bollagh. Lhisagh yn Ghaelg ve ry-akin ooilley mygeayrt-y-mooin. Oddagh yn Reiltys coadey yn chengey liorish cur ayns bree yn treealtys ta gra dy lhisagh gagh rheynn jeh'n Reiltys jannoo ymmyd jeh'n Ghaelg. Ec y traa t'ayn, t'eh croghey er yn sleih ayns y rheynn my vees yn Ghaelg ymmydit ny dyn.

Ta Gaelg goll er ynsaghey sy scoillyn as shen red mie agh cha nel eh agh toshiaght neesht as ta ram reddyn ayns feme jeh caghlaa. Shegin da'n chloan coayl lessoonyn elley my t'ad geearree jannoo Gaelg. Tra t'ad coayl lessoonyn scanshoil ta ny paarantyn gaccan as tayrn ad magh jeh lessoonyn Gaelgagh as tra ta'n chloan coayl lessoonyn s'mie lhieu cha nel ad geearree jannoo Gaelg arragh. T'eh traa dy chaghlaa yn eie ass date jeh cur er gagh paitchey dy ynsaghey Frangish as lhiggey dauesyn coayl traa currigylum my t'ad gynsaghey Gaelg. Nagh vel eh jannoo keeayll dy ynsaghey Frangish ny Gaelg ayns ynnyd jeh prowal dy yannoo yn jees jeu as coayl Maddaght ny Baarle as lessoonyn elley?

Nish ta Gaelscoill er ve currit er bun ta reddyn jeeaghyn ny share. Shen kesmad sy raad kiart. By vie lhiam fakin yn Reiltys deayrtey dy chooilley nhee stiagh sy chooish shoh dy vishaghey ee as jannoo ee speeideilagh. Foddee cloan jeh lughtyn-thie Manninagh ny cummaltee noa gaase seose loayrt yn Ghaelg as goaill ayrn ayns cultoor Vannin gyn smooinaghtyn.  Ta'n chengey foshlit da dy chooilley pheiagh. Cha nee Manninagh mee as cha noddin ve my Vanninagh rieau, agh she Gaelgeyr mish as ta mee gennaghtyn dy vel mee goaill ayrn ayns cultoor Vannin.

She ny Manninee hene yn nah phossan dy 'leih oddagh sauail ny marroo yn chengey oc. Ta sleih feer vieau dy accan noi ocsyn ta smooinaghtyn er Mannin myr caa argidoil, boayl mie son ny sloo keeshyn as ta cheet gys shoh gyn cur geill erbee da cultoor yn Ellan. Ny Juanyn haink noal. Agh dy firrinagh, bee yn sorch shen dy pheiagh ayn dy bragh as cha nodmayd jerkal roosyn dy chaghlaa. Agh tra ta ny Manninee 
hene gaghtey syn un aght ta reddyn jeeaghyn trimshagh. Tra ta ny Manninee treigeil yn chengey oc as craidey mysh yn sleih ta gynsaghey as loayrt yn Ghaelg ta mee goaill yindys. Ta kuse dy 'leih feer arryltagh dy ghra dy vel ad cur dwoaie da Sostyn agh t'ad loayrt ayns yn chengey eck gyn smooinaght er Chengey ny Mayrey Ellan Vannin. T'eh traa son yn foalsaght shoh dy heet gy kione.

Shegin da ny Gaelgeyryn loayrt Gaelg ayns gagh ayrn dy vea dy hoillshaghey magh dy vel yn chengey foast bio, as nagh vel ee agh ny hobbee son sleih corragh. Ta earroo beg dy 'leih gobbyr feer chreoie son yn chengey agh ta kuse dy 'leih ayn ta jannoo veg agh gaccan. Mannagh vel ad jannoo veg dy chooney, cha nel cair oc dy accan mychione yn obbyr vie ta'n sleih elley jannoo. Shegin da lught ny Gaelgey pohldal ny feaillaghyn gollrish Feailley Gaelgagh as taghyrtyn elley dy chur bree ayndaue. Cha bee Gaelg ry-chlashtyn mannagh jed ny Gaelgeyryn as loayrt Gaelg.

Ta ny Manninee feer aighoil dy ve as yn chengey aalin shoh oc. Cha nel ee marroo; cha row traa erbee ayn raad nagh row yn Ghaelg goll er loayrt er yn Ellan. Agh cre mysh yn traa ry-heet? Mannagh vel ny Manninee loayrt ee, yiow yn Ghaelg baase as bee shen baase yn chowrey smoo jeh neuchrogheydys Vannin t'ayn.

Ta ram sleih gra dy vel yn chengey feer scanshoil myr ayrn jeh enney yn Ellan, agh she chengey ta enney yn Ellan. Ta'n keeayllaght jeh cheer Cheltiagh ny heer raad ta chengey Celtiagh goll er loayrt, cha nee cheer raad VA chengey Celtiagh goll er loayrt. V'ad loayrt chengey Celtiagh ayns Sostyn keayrt dy row, agh cre cho mennick ta shiu clashtyn sleih loayrt mychione Sostyn myr cheer Cheltiagh?

Dooyrt Saunders Lewis dy row yn chengey ny smoo scanshoil ny reill thie erbee ayns Bretin, as ta shen kiart ayns Mannin myrgeddin. She yn chengey ta jannoo anchaslys eddyr ny Manninee as cummaltee elley jeh'n theihll, she yn chengey ta soillshaghey magh dy re Gaeil ad, as dy re Celtiee ad. Gyn yn Ghaelg, cha bee yn Ellan veg agh ayrn elley jeh Sostyn gollrish Ellan Eeaght. Ta shin ayns shoh ayns cooinaghtyn jeh Illiam Dhone er-yn-oyr dy ren eh sauail reiltys as seyrsnys Vannin. Ny lhig dooin jarrood dy vel yn chengey ny hayrn feer scanshoil jeh seyrsnys Vannin neesht.

Mec Vannin's submission to the DTI on work-permits

Mec Vannin made an extensive response to the of Trade and Industry in relation to proposed changes to the work permit regulations.

Although the recent cencus claimed a population of 76,000, few people give this any great credibility and the real figure is reckoned by some to be over 80,000. This represents an increase in population of 20,000 in 20 years despite a huge number of young Manx people being forced to emigrate because of inflated housing prices and failiure to recognise our own talent in the field of more specialised employment.

The investigation is still under way but we hold little hope for any positive outcome - the whole review is has been instigated by those who oppose the work permit system and the DTI seems only too keen to accommodate them.

The submission is reproduced in full below:

Work Permit Legislation - Proposed changes

Mec Vannin regard a work permit system as a mere supplement to a citizenship framework. In the absence of such a citizenship framework, the work permit legislation forms (in theory) a crude form of immigration control. It is stressed that this situation is purely theoretical since, as is admitted by the Department of Industry itself, of nearly 13,000 work permits issued in the past two years, a mere 57 have been revoked. It is also readily admitted that the overwhelming majority of work permit applications are made upon the presumption that they will be granted. Indeed, the refusal of a work permit seems to provoke self-righteous indignation in some quarters.

It has long been held by both Mec Vannin and a large number of others in the Island that the work permit system is nothing more than an administrative sop to be ignored or over-ridden for the greater part or, on just a few occassions, used as a punitive measure against individuals or businesses who have incurred the disfavour of someone in government. Coupled with the well known device of tailoring a job application to suit a particular applicant, the system is totally lacking in any credibility and is indeed in need of substantial overhaul. This is where Mec Vannin and the Department under Mr. Downie are, and are likely to remain, diametrically opposed.

The economy of the Isle of Man has been "boom-bust" for as long as there has been work permit legislation and so its presence can be seen to be singularly ineffective in stabilising the economy or employment situation. When there is a boom, work permit criteria are relaxed. This is the very time that the economic upper hand is available to force businesses to train and recognise through promotion and wages the indigenous workforce.  It is also the time that population increase must be discouraged in order to prevent artificially high unemployment figures in the inevitable bust that follows.

Conversely, in times of economic down-turn when natural emigration and disinsentive to imigration renders the work permit system virtually defunct, it is applied more rigorously. This is essentially because time allows it and traditionally, in a most immature piece of reasoning,, the government believe that unemployment figures can be driven down by denying permits to those who were welcomed with open arms a couple of years earlier. The real result is that unemployed Manx workers are frequently driven into jobs beneath their real worth (or risk losing benefit) whilst those requiring a permit may continue to receive state support as long as a permit is denied them.

The consultative document demonstrates the intention of the Department of Industry under Mr. Downie to facilitate the short term and self serving interests of business (and frequently non-Manx business at that) to the detriment of the Manx work-force by formalising what has been the fundamental failiure of the work-permit system for decades. It must also be stressed that the work permit system and its failures are merely one aspect of an ongoing failiure of governments in the Isle of Man to actually represent and provide a future for the Manx people. To look at work-permit regulation in isolation rather than as part of a cohesive policy of economic and social management is virtually meaningless: Of course there will be a demand to import people with skills as long as there is no requirement to train. Of course talent will leave as long as both educational and employment opportunities are not available on our own doorstep. Of course there will be a shortage of workers overall as long as the economy is allowed to run out of control as it is now. The list could go on and on.

Bearing in mind that this matter cannot and must not be viewed in isolation, Mec Vannin submits the following viewpoint and policies for work permit regulation.

Application Principles

Work permits should only ever be regarded as a temporary measure. A work permit should only ever be issued for a fixed term to complete a specific job or to train a Manx worker to the required standard. The issue and re-issue of work permits on an open ended basis until one is no longer required is a farce. The only other circumstance under which work permits should be issued is to those who are undergoing a probationary period with a view to taking up permanent residence in the Island. Such people would have to already have to have met other criteria. Re-issues of work permits should only occur when exceptional circumstances can be demonstrated.

In light of the above, automatic grant of "Isle of Man Worker" status to those who have had a permit for 5 years must cease.

It must be made clear in any and all job adverts carried off-Island that work permit legislation is in force.

All work-permit applications and approvals should be available for public inspection.

All job vacancies should be advertised on the Island BEFORE any off-Island advertising is embarked upon.

The criteria for advertising jobs to the Manx workforce  before entertaining off-Island advertising must be made clear. At the moment, it is difficult to get the same answer twice as to what level of advertising and where is required in the Isle of Man to satisfy work permit legislation.

Manx job applicants must be informed of any non-Manx applicants and any unsuccessful applicant must be informed if the job goes to a non-Manx applicant.

All applications must contain a declaration regarding any criminal past and an authorisation to be positively vetted. Applications from jurisdictions that do not cooperate should not be considered.

Declarations regarding any long-term health problems and / or habituations should be included. Again, an authorisation to confirm from current medical records must be included.

Whereas the current 3 day exemption for sporadic work is reasonable, this exemption must not apply if the visits form part of a regular capacity within the Island e.g. a person who regularly visits the Island for two days each month should require a permit.

There must be no exempt occupations.

Self-employed applicants must demonstrate that the issue of a permit would not be detrimental to a Manx worker.

All applicants must be able to provide references.

II. Reasons for Refusal

Failiure to meet any of the above criteria must result in a refusal.

False declarations must result in an automatic disbar with a potential for legal action.

If positive vetting reveals a problem in keeping with clearly laid out criteria, the permit must not be issued.

If a capable Manx worker is available, then a permit must not be issued.

If a Manx worker can be trained within a reasonable period of time, the permit must not be issued.

Any previous contravention of the regulations should act as an obstacle.

No permits should be issued to any business that has suffered redundancies within the previous 12 months.

No permits should be issued to any business that has announced redundancies.

III The Function and Powers of the Work Permit Committee.

The primary function of the work permit committee must be to determine firstly if a a permit is justifiable and secondly if the applicant is suitable.

In this aspect, the above guidelines must be followed. Although the above is a "bare bones" set of principles, the fleshed out legislation must leave the least possible room for subjective decision making on the part of the committee.

To establish a genuine need, the committee must be sufficiently resourced to consult and acquire independent advice as to the skills, qualifications and experience needed to perform a particular function. The applicants must demonstrate that there is not a reasonable opportunity to train, adapt or promote a Manx worker to a given position.

Similarly, the committee must be sufficiently resourced to properly investigate the declarations and backgrounds of the individuals seeking work-permits.

IV Enforcement

Past experience demonstrates that both work permit applications and subsequent enforcement have been subject to substantial political interference that have left the Manx workforce with no confidence in a system that was already regarded as little more than cosmetic. To have any meaning, the legislation must be seen to be effective in both the administration of work permits and the detection and punishment of offenders.

The posturing of the Moon family, then owners of the Castle Mona Hotel, secured an improperly issued permit for a member of their family. People and businesses who use this tactic do not benefit the Island and its people and should be given every assistance to leave.

The failiure of the Attorney General to prosecute a single instance of the massive abuse uncovered by inspectors at the Ballamona hospital site should itself be subject to a thorough public inquiry since, at the current time, there can be little conclusion drawn other thatn the Attorney General was acting under orders from a political entity.

To ensure the proper enforcement of work permit legislation, NI and tax records should cross reference to work permit status.

If more inspectors are required to carry out work-place investigations, then these must be made available. Further investigation of the function of the DoTI as administrator and policer of the legislation is also required as there is a strong perception that policing is, like the work permit administration, subject to political interference.

V Specific comments on the Department's proposals.

As has been previously stated by Mec Vannin, the proposals represent a betrayal of the Manx people. This is a shining example of a politician elected by the people to represent their interests, acting as a poodle for business interests whose primary objective is short term monetary gain.

Where a capable Manx worker is available for a position, the only question that should ever arise is if there is a better Manx worker available. Any other course is against the best interests of the Manx people.

The notion that the interests of business automatically serve the interests of the Manx people is totally fallacious. Businesses exist to maximise profit for their owners and share-holders. In the area of employment, this means means maximum exploitation for minimum regulation. As long as businesses are permitted to import off-the -shelf candidates in lieu of providing proper training and long-term commitment to our people, the Manx workers will be forever condemened to be treated as second rate and denied the opportunity to fulfil their true potential. The alternative is emigration, a course which many are continuing to follow.

The only aspect of the proposed changes for which we can find support is the proposal to hold hearings in public and, typically, this support is tainted by the fact that the proposal is to satisfy external convention rather than any inherent desire to see just administration. The proposal is further sullied by the proposal to give the Tribunal unilateral power to go into private, carte blanche for abuse if ever there was.


From "A Book of Manx Poetry" published by the Manx Language Society and the World Manx Society, 1913.

THE Scot to mighty Wallace 
And lordly Bruce is leal;
The Irish heart's the palace 
Of Brian and O'Neil;
The Welsh, they laud Llewelyn
With harp and trumpet tone;
But oh! our hero's Illiam, 
Our hero's Illiam Dhone!

For when oppression flourish'd,
And we were slaves, not men,
What voice rebellion nourish'd
And gave us heart again? 
What proud insurgent vassal 
Could shake the tyrant's throne, 
And pluck from him his castle, 
Say, who but Iliiam Dhone? 

Ah ! laurel tree fair risen,
But blasted at a breath, 
O'erpower'd and pent in prison
Tried, doom'd, and led to death! 
His fair ones he is clasping
A flash, a fall, a groan
And in his life's blood, gasping, 
Lies gallant Illiam Dhone!

His foes traduced him living, 
Hiss foes traduced him dead, 
With hatred unforgiving,
Our hand, our heart, our head. 
But when the dead have mounted 
Before the judgment Throne, 
Which shall be righteous counted 
Shall they, or Illiam Dhone? 

Then oh, while great and simple 
Still side by side are set,
In God's own Tynwald temple, 
Let Manxmen ne'er forget, 
That the red seal on a charter 
Of freedom all our own
Is the life-blood of our martyr 
And monarch, Illiam Dhone


Manx Radio Funding

Prior to the debate in Tynwald on the future of Manx Radio, the following statement was sent to the Isle of Man Treasury Minister, Alan Bell, and the Isle of Man's Communications Commission:

In January of 2002, Mec Vannin took  part in the stg400,000 consultation exercise into the future of Manx Radio. The submission opened with the statement that, in essence, the consultation was superfluous in that there would be nothing stated or determined by any party that had not been stated or determined several times previously.

We went on to state (as Mec Vannin has so many times before) that the fundamental problem with Manx Radio was that it was permanently fighting between being a public service station, serving the Manx people, and being a commercial station broadcasting "easy listening" pap interspersed with advertising to gain revenue. In this, it was indistinguishable from any UK commercial station and, as such, was bound to flounder when most of its broadcast area is unpopulated water. Mec Vannin believes that the central ethos should be public service with enhanced and more in-depth news coverage and reporting. If this is to cost more, so be it. The current situation is that the Manx people are not being best served by a station whose ability to provide a live news and information service is so badly undermined by underfunding and commercial interest.

This, in essence, stems form an apparent reluctance on the part of the government in the Isle of Man to provide proper funding for the station (currently a paltry stg230,000 per year) and the station has several political enemies who, for reasons known best only unto themselves, would love to see the station sold off into private hands. The last real attempt at this was when then Chief Minister Miles Walker used his position to attempt to drive through the sale of the station job-lot to a friend and constituent, the late Brian Kreisky. It seems that he has never forgiven the station for not be flogged off at a bargain price. Likewise, former Onchan MHK Geoff Cannell's foray into politics seems to have been based upon a grudge against the station (of which he was a former employee). These are by no means the only ones however.

When the consultation exercise was eventually made public, last month, the opening summary could have been lifted directly from Mec Vannin's submission! The consultation projects a cost of some stg800,000 per year to provide the necessary level of service and a pre-publication leak of this figure was immediately siezed upon by the only other wide circulation news source in the Isle of Man, Isle of Man Newspapers. This company is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Johnston publishing group and publishes three titles compiled by the same staff.

Whearas Mec Vannin has often been critical of aspects of the station's management and will undoubtedly continue to be so, we have no difficulty in endorsing the consultative document. Tynwald voted stg400,000 of tax-payers money to have experts tell them what we have told them many times before. If this professional advice is ignored, Tynwald will be guilty of both wrecklessly wasting taxpayers money and (yet again) doing the people of the Isle of Man a costly dis-service by failing to provide a properly funded national broadcaster.

End of Statement

Happily, the station got its funding. Now the responsibility falls fairly and squarely upon the shoulders of the station management to ensure that we DO get a national service for our money.

Tiers of Mann

It's not its height nor history
Nor its independent ways
Nor not who's there
Nor who is not
Nor anything they says.
It's not the thousand years an' more
An' it's not to save the Queen.
Enough to say the bein' there
An' the sake of bein' seen

An' I've been
An' aye, I've met a Viking
An' I stood beside the pomp an' posh
An' it wasn't to me liking
An' I've bought the bits of plastic
An' I've stood an' took the strain
As I've queued with other Manxmen
For that sprig of Bollan bane

To wear,
Not as a pagan broach
No! No!
More as the mark of the man
An inherent stain of reproach
Yer know
Part o' the last o' the clan
Drained of sap an' sustenance
Even the tramman dries
An' where fairies once danced in circles
A Viking now kneels an' cries.

Vinty Kneale

Smallpox - If a threat exists, we should make proper preparations

Just how real the bio-terror threat is, is a questionable subject in itself, with many believing that it is simply a propoganda exercise to incite anti-Iraq sentiment in the run-up to another war. No matter what, smallpox is re-emerging as a disease and whilst routine pre-emptive vaccination is not advisable, it is only sensible to have sufficient vaccine to treat the population if an outbreak were to occur. In response to an enquiry in late August, Director of Public Health Dr. Ian MacLean declined to discuss details of any planning for "security reasons." 

He was less reticent to an IoM Newspapers enquiry a few weeks later and seemed quite happy to discuss details - including an admission that there would be a selective vaccination programme. When challenged over the disparity between the responses, he replied that "in the light of a UK announcement concerning the proposed immunisation of key personal against smallpox, it is hardly surprising that the two statements differ."

From the information we have gathered, it appears that we will be dependent on UK vaccine stocks which are not themselves sufficient. Let's just suppose that the was a deliberate spread of smallpox - how could it possibly be contained and combatted without the ability to vaccinate the entire population? If there is a genuine possibility of the intentional spread of smallpox, then half-hearted measures are a pointless waste of time and money.  We need to secure an independent supply of vaccine in ample quantity and act on our own, not the UK's initiative. As things stand, we are potentially faced with the uncomfortable concept of a selective vaccination programme based on a judgement of an individual's worth. What criteria would be used?

For services rendered...

It is truly fitting that Fred Kissack,  Chief  Secretary to the Isle of Man's Council of Ministers, is to receive the Order of the British Empire and the misjudgement of Tynwald President Noel Cringle's call for a change in title of the UK's colonial administrator from Lieutenant Governor could not be more clearly highlighted. (See press release of 29-12-02)

It is also particularly fitting that this news be released two days before the annual Illiam Dhone commemoration on the 2nd of January, when people gather at the site of Illiam Dhone's (William Christian's) execution on the orders of the Isle of Man's English Lord in 1663 on a trumped up charge of treason - his "crime" was to actually save the the position of the Lord of Mann (though perhaps inadvertantly) , the independence of the Isle of Man and almost certainly the lives of the future Lord of Mann and his family.

Conversely, Mr. Kissack's honour is reportedly for "services to the Isle of Man government." Not much has changed in the world of politics since the time of Illiam Dhone but the calibre of the participants appears to have fallen somewhat. Mr Kissack occupies the modern day equivalent to the office of William Christian when he raised the Manx Militia against Countess Charlotte de Tremouille (the then Lord of Mann's wife) and her plan to use the Manx people as cannon fodder to secure her own safety and fortune against the English Parliamentarians. Christian, faced with the choice of sending the Manx people for slaughter, inevitable defeat and enslavement as his "duty of office", or raising the militia against the Countess's self-serving intentions, knowingly put his life on the line and sided with the people. His actions secured a treaty with the English Parliamentarians that ensured a safe escape for the Countess and her family, the continuance of the Manx Tynwald, and an undertaking that the Manx people would be left to "enjoy their former rights and liberties."

Consequently, when the English Crown was restored, the Lordship of Man together with its high degree of autonomy was also restored but Illiam Dhone was executed on the instructions of the Countess's son, who somehow held Christian responsible for his own father's execution by the roundheads at Bolton in an entirely seprate incident!

Fred Kissack has never been faced with being shot. Three years ago, however, he was faced with a conflict of loyalties when, in his position as assistant to the Isle of Man's colonial administrator, the Lieutenant Governor (who's position directly parallels that of  Countess Charlotte), he was called upon to maintain as secret from the Council of Ministers a forthcoming investigation into the Isle of Man's financial regulation by a UK appointed investigator. What became known as the "Edwards Review" was revealed to the Council of Ministers by someone who had heard the English Parliament's question time in which the plan to investigate the "off-shore centres" was announced. Fred Kissack, the Council of Ministers' own Secretary, had known about it for a week but kept it secret like a good little Quisling.

Let there be no mistake: Had Fred Kissack did his duty and service to the government (and people) in the Isle of Man, he would have revealed the knowledge. This, however, would have cost him any chance of a "gong" from Westminster. Fred Kissack's OBE is for sevices rendered to the British Empire and against the Manx nation. It is formal recognition of his services to a colonial usurper over and above his duties to his own country and the cynism of this award is self evident. Mr Kissack is also reported to be very pleased with his new three letter appendage. No surprises there, then.

Mr. Kissack's name may not be remembered by anyone in more than three hundred years, most particularly anyone involved in any "British Empire", but Manx nationalists at least will make sure that we have the record straight.

The supposed existence of Ghosts

Do you suppose, we'll ever see
A fairy in a Tramman tree
Or glimpse the Glashin astride a wave
Or Mannanin as he cloaks to save
Will the mighty big Buggane
Ever go to church again

Will the crofters all return
Will salmon leap the Silverburn?
Will Vikings scamper in retreat?
From little patterin' naked feet
Will the Moardy Dhoo, win best of breed
Please keep your Phantoms, on a lead

Will you be there to see the fall?
Last Manxmen, at the roll call
With twenty strangers, on a hill
Can you tell me, which one's Bill?
Can you tell, when he is reading?
Is it me, he's superseding?

The future is a stranger
In a hat that doesn't fit
The past is what we lost
When we tried to shackle it
The present is a daydream
That the air is always free
An' a Fairy's just a squatter
In a first time buyers, tree.

But you voted them in,
The all an' the Glashin,
The Ushtey Bull an' the thief for the thrashin'
The witch an' the whore an' the damned an' insane
The dead an' the deeded, the limp an' the lame

An' they sat them on that hill.
An' we?
Well! We watch em'

Do you suppose we'll ever see?
A fairy!
In the elder tree.

Vinty Kneale

Mec Vannin Archive established

The long and laborious task of establishing a Mec Vannin document archive has begun. With 40 years of material to sift through, mostly as paper originals, much manually typed and some hand-written, this is a long term project and will include earlier issues of Yn Pabyr Seyr being added to the Pabyr Seyr archive.

The archive and Yn Pabyr Seyr archive can be found by following the links from:


The internet newslist can also be subscribed to from this site

Mec Vannin - The Manx Nationalist Party

These pages form part of the Manxman domain.