Wednesday 20 February 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'Children’s Hospital scandal isn’t big enough to sink FG'

Health Minister Simon Harris
Health Minister Simon Harris
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Fianna Fáil is ramping up pressure on Health Minister Simon Harris by personally targeting his age and “lack of life experience” as the hospital controversy escalates.

However, Fianna Fáil will not force Leo Varadkar to sack Mr Harris as it believes it can inflict more damage on the Government while he is still in the Cabinet.

Fianna Fáil is now playing the waiting game knowing Fine Gael is too far ahead in the polls. Pulling the chain on the Government over a few hundred million of taxpayers’ money will not bridge this gap. To regain power, it must wait for a much bigger scandal.

In the meantime, the taxpayer will continue to pick up the tab for this very expensive political waiting game!

Seamus McLoughlin,

Keshcarrigan, Co Leitrim

 

Nuclear energy holds the key for us to kill carbon emissions

I am glad Ivan Yates is flagging the impending substantial penalties for Ireland’s lack of progress in reducing emissions once we reach 2020 (‘Wind energy can provide a silver-bullet solution to €600m EU climate fines’, Irish Independent, February 9).

However, I disagree with him entirely about wind being the panacea he claims. Surely the fact we are a world leader in wind power while at the same time being “climate laggards” should tell him something. I don’t think he is doing the maths, which for a former bookie is a bit surprising.

What is his vision exactly? Is it 100pc intermittent renewables (wind/solar) or is it an intermittent renewables/natural gas mix which looks like the preferred option at present for our Government, with plans for LNG terminals being developed for Cork Port and Ballylongford, Co Kerry.

Either of these options is problematic. The first because it is technically almost impossible to achieve. More wind turbines, even if offshore, just increase the spikes of supply while leaving fossil fuels to keep the lights on 70pc of the time. As Robert Kennedy Jr said in 2010: “The wind and solar plants we are building are gas plants.”

Germany and California have borne out the veracity of this statement with increasing reliance on fracked gas in the US and Germany building more coal plants and planning the Nord Stream 2 pipeline to bring in more Russian gas.

There is a third way. It is a mix of renewables and nuclear and it is proven to work. France, Sweden and Ontario in Canada have fully decarbonised electric grids with this approach.

Dr Pat Morrissey,

Adare, Co Limerick

 

‘Garryowen’ keeps rugby teams alive and kicking

There are two popular kicks used in rugby: one is the “box kick”, which appears to be used most often to give the ball to the opposing side either directly or via the side line throw-in. The other is the “Garryowen” which is accurately fashioned, as by the English, to enable the kicker’s side to have a 50/50 chance of winning it.

Ted O’Keeffe,

Ranelagh, Dublin 6

 

Ireland gave Finney fine film stage to shine in the cinema

The obituaries on Albert Finney fail to acknowledge that he starred in three films which were shot in Ireland.

Two of the movies – ‘The Playboys’ in 1992, and ‘The Run of the Country’ (1995) – were filmed in Redhills in Co Cavan.

The other film, ‘A Man of No Importance’ (1994) was shot in Dublin, in which Finney played a bus conductor in the 1960s whose real passion is producing amateur theatre productions of Oscar Wilde plays. All three were a testament to Finney’s acting ability.

Jim Griffiths,

Clonsilla, Dublin 15

 

Litany of woe spells out deserved fate for Brexiteers

Leo F Sharkey suggests that what Donald Tusk said was that there was a special place in Hull, rather than Hell, for those who promoted Brexit without a plan (Irish Independent, January 2). The 17th century “Beggars Litany” saw no difference: “From Hull, Hell, and Halifax, may the good Lord deliver us.”

Seán Donnelly,

Ballyfermot, Dublin 10

 

Animal or vegetable – ‘The Bible’ has wisdom of ages

Regarding the controversy between vegans and carnivores, ‘The Bible’, which must be regarded with some authority on the subject, says at Genesis ch 9 v 3-4: “Every moving animal that is alive may serve as food for you.” As in the case of green vegetation: “I do give it all to you.”

Richard Ryan,

Pallasgreen, Co Limerick

Irish Independent

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