Give our Government the credit it deserves
Published 28/09/2015 | 02:30
This letter is addressed to the citizens of Ireland and the non-stop whingeing that is going on about the present Government. Take the blinkers off please and answer the following questions.
We want to help the homeless but we don't want to pay the Universal Social Charge. We want better schools but don't want to pay income tax.
We want better social welfare. We don't want to pay water charges and yet we want clean water. If we want all these changes we have to pay for them in some way.
We whinge about Government ministers going abroad on St Patrick's Day but we don't see the benefits that accrue from these trips. Look at all the foreign investment in this country - that did not come about with ministers sitting at home; rather, they were with Enterprise Ireland and other entrepreneurs showing a big commitment to Ireland Inc.
This Government has got us out of the worst financial crisis we have ever been in. Clare Daly, Shane Ross, Mick Wallace, Paul Murphy did not.
This Government has shown courage, determination and a commitment to the big picture of getting us out of the mess we were in, so let them finish the job.
While not everyone is feeling the benefits of an uplifting economy yet, the figures are showing that the worst of it is over - unemployment is down, exports are up, car and retail sales are up and the Government is looking to bring back our immigrants.
If I had told you four-and-a-half years ago how the economy would be in 2015, you would not have believed it.
Things are by no means perfect, and we still need things to improve, but don't change the team in the next general election. A government dependent on Independents is a recipe for disaster.
Jackie Healy Rae and Tony Gregory did alright for Kerry and Dublin's north inner city, but the rest of the country did not benefit. Imagine if we had 20 Independents in government? How would the country be run?
Kilmacud, Dublin 14
Put more gardai on the street
On what is now a run-up to a General Election, the Government is desperately searching for the big headline to encourage that feel-good factor, particularly associated with job creation, in an effort to secure those much-needed votes.
Unfortunately, in doing so, they have once again failed to see the obvious. With one stroke of a pen, the Government could put more garda on the streets and take at least 500 of the live register - now there's a headline for you!
As far back as 2003, Michael McDowell TD proposed that non-garda personnel should be drafted in to assist the garda - particularly where the processing of paperwork was concerned.
Unfortunately, the progress has been painfully slow.
Making changes now would immediately ensure hundreds more garda on the streets - helping, in particular, rural communities who are under siege from marauding gangs.
It would also see hundreds more employed in the processing of the paperwork necessary to prosecute criminals quickly. Surely our TDs could put their re-election concerns on hold and do something positive and constructive - which would have that much sought after 'feel-good effect' on communities.
Bishop Birch Place, Kilkenny
Why can't Revenue link up?
For years, we have been told that the Children's Allowance cannot be taxed without a massive effort to link the Social Welfare and Revenue computer systems.
Yet, for the payment of a relatively paltry sum of the €100 Water Conservation Grant per household, Social Welfare has implemented a comprehensive nationwide collection of data.
Why can't such an effort be expanded to link up with the Revenue system, especially as all PPS numbers have been gathered in this latest exercise?
Booterstown, Co Dublin
Just call Enda's 'taxi hire'
Whenever he steps out of line for the slightest infraction, it makes headlines. I refer to An Taoiseach.
Yet, within the last week, he created 10,388 new jobs - each earning over €500 a week - and not a word about it. No, you're not misreading that figure!
The new set-up is called Enda's Taxi Hire Services. If you happen to break down and need a lift, just dial 999.
Tell them Enda said you are to be brought wherever it is you want to go, the driver will be dressed in a navy uniform with his number clearly shown, he will also have a security guard with him for your safety.
About time we started to appreciate how hard An Taoiseach is working for us all!
Glenville, Dublin 15
ASTI school report not so good
Following the protracted negotiations that have taken place between the Dept of Education and ASTI, it is disappointing to see that the proposed Junior Cycle changes have been once again rejected.
How frustrating this has become for students and parents alike.
Year in, year out the same old nonsense continues. The issues are further compounded by the failure of 62pc of ASTI members to vote. Where does the blame lie for such complacency? Perhaps, it is time for the leadership of ASTI to look at their leadership and motivational methods, to examine their core structures in successfully managing to negotiate, agree and implement changes like other responsible trade unions.
Re-organisation is inevitable, but how long do the parents and students that are being affected have to wait for ASTI to implement change?
A school report on the matter might suggest that 'more effort is required'.
Fortfield, Raheen, Limerick