• I have just watched the nine o'clock news: Ruairi Quinn declared that the great sacrifice has been made, and Labour and Fine Gael have come together once more to save our nation.
Well, I have a story Ruairi, a true story about what is happening in every corner of Ireland as I write this letter. I stood in one of our county towns today and listened to a man tell me that after 40 years in business, he has been forced to close down. His son, who joined him from college over 15 years ago, will be out of a job.
This is a business that survived and grew in every other economic climate.
Padraic and his son, John, are not closing because of competition, as most of the competition has closed already. And they're not closing because they are expensive, as their prices are second to none. They are closing because there is no business, people have no money and austerity policies have destroyed our economy, our people and our country.
Men like Padraic have been the backbone of this economy for decades.
But what reward does he get? No big lump sum, no golden handshake, no big pension, not even the dole – and he will have to wait until next July to draw his old age pension.
Name and address with editor