Robertshaw’s ‘income apartheid’

SO it’s official, the Isle of Man government is embarking down the dark and dangerous roads of social cleansing.

The Uriah Heap of Manx politics Chris Robertshaw proudly announces his policy to bully people out of their homes.

Big Brother comes to our little island in the guise of an Iain Duncan-Smith tribute act – pathetic.

Mr Robertshaw, you are out of your depth, your rancid housing policy will set social cohesion back a hundred years.

Do we really want to price people out of their home, to force some to take on the biggest debt in their lives, i.e. a mortgage, in such dire economic times?

No, we really want estates where only the poor can live, fearful of earning a few extra pounds in case they are asked to vacate their house by the thought police. And do we really want to spy on one section of the community while adapting a laissez faire attitude to the island’s more affluent citizens?

Can we afford to introduce income apartheid? It’s crazy.

Talk about the rich man in his castle the poor man at his gate – it’s wrong and nasty.

If anybody needs evidence of how insane this policy is then apply its social criterion to other government departments.

Let’s use education as an example.

I gladly pay taxes to help fund our excellent state education system.

It’s of such a standard that the children of business people, lawyers, doctors, investment bankers and daresay MHKs, attend these schools; and that’s a good social cohesion is something to be proud of.

But apply Mr Robertshaw system should these well off parents be forced to pay a little more towards their children’s primary and secondary. Indeed should MHKs be encouraged to educate their children in private schools.

It sounds barmy, no one in their right mind would suggest it, but that’s exactly the system our government is advocating for its housing tenants.

It’s nasty, it’s sinister, worthy of a police state.

It’s easy to be a critic, I realise that, but in an effort to help, may I suggest a few ways to ease these financial burdens.

Why not sell your largest social house, where the residents pay no rent?

How many millions could you save by flogging Government House?

This government is keen to privatise anything that’s not bolted down. Why not Government House and its duties?

Let the Sefton Group have the franchise. They need the money.

What about some control over private rents? Let’s stop subsidising private landlords. Let’s see rent caps in the private sector. But most of all let’s have the guts to share the economic woes proportionally.

Those who prospered through the dodgy and reckless banking years should contribute most, not social housing residents.

There is something rotten at the heart of Manx public life.

Political apathy has allowed (with notable exceptions) a right living clique to dominate the political agenda.

What we need is a creditable opposition to challenge the new liberal poison our government is dishing out.

Tony-clones spouting Daily Mail clichés is not the answer.

R Cowley



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