Friday 20 September 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'UK must work with Irish friends to build a society fit for all, not the elite'

Poisoned promise: Former British prime minister David Cameron’s referendum
Poisoned promise: Former British prime minister David Cameron’s referendum
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

On Tuesday (November 27), two letters were published by the Irish Independent on Brexit.

One, from Paul Connolly, address withheld, argues against the view that Britain is being bullied by the EU and, in effect, that with reference to Lloyd George's aggressive demands to the Irish delegation in 1921, the UK has now been hoist by its own petard.

The second, from Len Gurrie, from London, argues the opposite, in as far as if the UK leaves the European Union without an agreement, it will be the fault of the EU.

As a UK national, I must say that whatever befalls the UK, it is of its own making.

My own view is that the most important element of the EU confederacy is economic.

And I firmly believe that the people of most of the countries in the EU would rather that it did not follow the path of centralised political power and administration, especially under the auspices of appointed but unelected short-term, also-ran presidents who have no interests in the future of the organisation after they have served their self-serving term.

What the UK ought to have done was to object to the politicisation of the EU, while still being a member. I would have loved to have been a part of such a policy and I am certain that we could have achieved this.

Unfortunately, as we all know to our detriment, those whom we vote into power in our so-called democracies discard us and our well being as soon as their positions, and those of their class, are threatened.

In the case of the UK, it was the decrepit David Cameron who hoped against hope that his promise of a referendum would keep him in power, but instead has led to a potential economic crisis of enormous proportions, both to the UK but also to Ireland. After all is said and done, in times of imminent disaster, it is the ordinary people of our nations who suffer most.

We live in hope, nothing is written in stone. But we need to work with our friends in the EU, and in particular in Ireland, to forestall a potential disaster and unite to create a society for us to prosper; not for the benefit of the commercial and political sections of our countries, but for ourselves, ordinary people without economic or political power, trying to do our best to survive.

Harry Charalambou

London, UK

McDonald: Varadkar arrogant and ignorant

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar's demand that Sinn Féin MPs should resign shows breathtaking arrogance, political ignorance and a worrying level of anti-democratic sentiment.

This ludicrous and anti-democratic proposition is endorsed by the Irish Independent (November 27) which describes the Taoiseach's logic as "flawless".

Those who have turned their backs on Northern nationalists for generations and who themselves abstain from Northern elections demand that we renege on our democratic mandate, swear allegiance to a foreign power and sit in a foreign parliament.

The truth is that the Taoiseach's position is driven by political point-scoring. His analysis is threadbare and really shoddy for the head of Government.

Ireland's interests have never and will never be advanced by Westminster. Historical records and Brexit amplify this point.

Those looking at this through a crude mathematical lens fail to calculate what the political implications would be if Irish Republicans entered the House of Commons to try to dictate what sort of Brexit will take place.

It will not happen, but it would not work anyway.

Partition is against Irish national interests. Brexit dramatically demonstrates this reality.

I find it absolutely shocking that a serving Taoiseach would advocate that Irish politicians, representing Irish people on the island of Ireland, should swear allegiance to a foreign monarch.

Sinn Féin is a national organisation with a national leadership and decision-making structures. How could we as a party of the Oireachtas swear allegiance to a foreign monarch?

How could the Taoiseach or other parties in Government entertain the notion of swearing allegiance to a foreign power? They know that this is not a realistic proposition.

Sinn Féin has worked constructively with the Government and other parties on the issue of Brexit and we will continue to do so. But the political point scoring needs to stop and Sinn Féin's mandate must be respected.

This issue is too serious to be used as a political football.

Mary Lou McDonald TD

Leinster House

Fine Gael must reveal if it will govern with Sinn Féin

As Leo Varadkar is in phony election zone, perhaps Fine Gael will be straight with the electorate: Will it deal with Sinn Féin in forming a coalition, or minority government, after the election?

The vital question then has to be asked: If Sinn Féin doesn't get its way in forming any future coalition government, will it be obstructionist in Dublin, as the party has been in Stormont?

After all, a party that has seats in Westminster and steadfastly refuses to participate in the Brexit debate there can hardly be in touch with anyone outside its own vacuum; a vacuum discarded long, long ago by the majority in the Irish Republic.

With the odds on an international financial depression shortening, the last thing the Republic of Ireland wants or needs in power is a conflicted government.

Declan Foley

Berwick, Australia

Theresa May should stick to principles of Brexit

With reference to Theresa May's protracted and orchestrated EU negotiations, may I suggest the following quotation as regards the above, with particular reference to the backstop?

"Pragmatism is a practice of politics whereby principles are parked, often permanently, never to be reclaimed."

Leave means leave.

Colin McNamee

Somerset, UK

Irish Independent

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