Żgur li naqbel ma’ kull inizjattiva siewja li tittieħed biex f’Għawdex jinżammu ħidmiet li jkattru l-attività f’dik il-gżira. Żgur m’iniex nimpressjona ruħi bil-kritika tal-Oppożizzjoni dwar problemi fil-qasam tas-saħħa. Naf tajjeb kif matul snin sħaħ, il-mexxejja tal-PN ħadu deċiżjonijiet – minn San Raffaele, sa Mater Dei, sal-qasam primarju ta’ kura – li kompla jgħabbi l-kriżijiet fuq s-settur tas-saħħa.

Biss ma nafx kemm tagħmel sens li l-kolonoskopiji kollha qed isiru Għawdex. Għalihom trid issum minn nofs il-jum ta’ qabel u tieħu porga porgun. Dan it-trattament imantrek sew sal-għada filgħodu. Naf għax għaddejt mill-esperjenza kemm-il darba.

Li mmantar kif tkun, l-għada filgħodu kmieni trid tmur bil-karozza ta’ xi ħadd jew bl-ambulanza minn Malta sal-isptar ta’ Għawdex biex tagħmel l-intervent, naraha tbatija żejda u bla sens.

Imma jekk l-interventi jsiru Malta, għall-Għawdxin mhux l-istess ħaġa tiġri? Hu daqstant problematiku li l-kolonoskopiji jsiru kemm f’Malta, kemm f’Għawdex?

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Ġenna fiskali?

Fid-diskussoni li għadha sejra fl-Ewropa dwar it-tassazzjoni u kif se tiġi kkontrollata l-evażjoni, argument li dejjem jitqajjem hu dwar it-“tax havens”, dawk il-pajiżi li jservu ta’ “ġenna” fiskali għal min jagħmel minn kollox biex iħallas l-anqas taxxa possibbli. Kulħadd jinkazza kontra tagħhom għax iservu ta’ rifuġju għall-midinbin u fl-istess ħin, b’din l-attività, jmorru tajjeb huma.

Mhux kulħadd juża l-istess definizzjoni ta’ x’jikkostitwixxi ġenna fiskali. L-OECD, l-għaqda ta’ koperazzjoni u żvilupp ekonomiku bejn l-aktar pajjiżi sinjuri, għandha l-proċedura tagħha kif tikklassifika min hu “ġenna” u min le. Pajjiż bħal Malta mhux mitqies ta’ hekk. Imma awtoritajiet u esperti fiskali oħra ma jaqblux mal-OECD.

Issa donnha qed tiżviluppa l-proposta li l-Unjoni Ewropea nnifisha tgħaqqad id-definizzjoni tagħha. Min qed jippromwovi dal-ħsieb, qed jinsisti li l-kriterji mħaddma mill-UE jridu jkunu ħafna aktar severi minn tal-OECD.

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Jekk…

Waqt li l-korp tal-ħarsien ċivili tellaq eżerċizzju ta’ tħejjija għall-każ li jinqala’ terrimot, fil-midja dehru stejjer dwar x’jiġri jekk iqum tsunami fil-Mediterran. Mir-rendikonti mogħtija, tsunami jkun ifisser it-tmiem ta’ Malta.

Dan fakkarni f’mappa li rajt m’ilux ħafna, mibnija bil-kompjuter, li bassret kif il-Mediterran x’aktarx jidher sa mitejn elf sena mil-lum. Mhux biss Malta tkun telqet, imma l-Italja kważi kollha, kif ukoll il-peninżola tal-Balkani, inkluża l-Greċja.

Sa dak iż-żmien ħadd minna mhu se jkun hawn biex jivverfifika jekk il-kompjuter ħax żball għax kollox ikun baqa’ bħal-lum.

Biss jekk il-kompjuter ħa żball mhux dwar kif se jispiċċa l-Mediterran, imma dwar meta se sseħħ il-bidla…?

 

English Version – Colonoscopy in Gozo

For sure, one cannot but agree with all worthwhile initiatives undertaken to generate new activity in Gozo. Meanwhile, one certainly cannot be impressed by the Opposition’s criticism regarding problems in the health sector. For long years,PN leaders took decisions that heaped crisis upon crisis over the health sector, from San Raffaelle to Mater Dei to the provision of primary care.

Still it is difficult to understand why all colonoscopies are now being held in Gozo. Prior to undergoing a colonoscopy, you must fast from noon of the previous day, while consuming some very powerful purgatives. By dawn of the day of the intervention, this treatment leaves you quite weak. I know from personal experience having gone through the intervention a number of times.

In order to get it done, weak as you are, early in the morning you now have to leave Malta and travel to Gozo’s general hospitalin a friend’s car or by ambulance. This all amounts to the infliction of needless and senseless trouble and anxiety.

However if interventions are carried out in Malta, would not the same problem affect Gozitans?

Would it be so problematic if colonoscopies were carried out in both Malta and Gozo?

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Tax haven?

In the discussion that is still proceeding in Europe about taxation and the control of tax evasion, a perennial argument revolves around tax havens – those countries which provide a fiscal refuge for firms and people prepared to do anything in order to pay as little tax as possible. Such countries are lambasted from all points of the compass for serving as a refuge for sinners, but meanwhile, they do quite well for themselves from this activity.

A definition that is universally accepted of what constitutes a fiscal paradise does not exist. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which brings all the richer countries together, has its own procedure by which to classify tax havens. Malta is one country which falls outside this classification. However, other authorities and tax experts disagree with the OECD.

Now it seems that a new proposal is firming up for the European Union to formulate its own defintion. Those who are promoting this idea insist that the criteria which should be adopted by the EU must be much more stringent than those of the OECD.

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If…

As the civil protection corps was launching an exercise to simulate what should be done if an earthquake struck, stories were published in the media regarding what would happen if a tsunami arose in the Mediterranean. According to the reports, a tsunami would mean the end of Malta.

This reminded me of a map developed not so long ago by a computer programme which forecast how the Mediterranean would shape up two hundred thousand years from today. Not only will Malta have vanished, but so would Italy as a whole, as well as Greece and the whole Balkan peninsula.

If everything remains like it is today, nobody now alive would be able to note that the computer had made a mistake.

Still the computer might also have gotten it wrong not with regard to the Mediterranean’s eventual “shape”, but about when it will happen.