Sir -- Ireland's white collar criminals, the CPBDs (corrupt politicians, bankers and developers) have created devastation. They may claim they have killed no one.
I grew up in the west of Ireland in the 1950s and most of my male friends were forced to emigrate. Many have died of alcoholism and hardships due to the failures of previous Fianna Fail governments. Emigration and its consequences are now being repeated due to renewed Fianna Fail government failures. Even during the Celtic Tiger years, hospital patients died needlessly and waiting queues lengthened. Due to the economic disaster inflicted by these same CPBDs the death toll from deteriorating health services will far outstrip the death toll inflicted by ODC (ordinary decent criminals) types. Of course these deaths by a thousand cuts will not be counted -- they will be just collateral damage -- we don't do death counts, our health service generals will say.
We are also told by these same CPBD criminals that there are no solutions to this economic and social disaster, except to accept the rack-rent terms on the obscene loans that have been foisted on the Irish people. There are alternatives and solutions. One solution is to ensure accountability at all levels, and to strip all concerned of any ill-gotten gains. Another is for the Irish people to reject these so-called bailout loans and default on any debts that we the Irish people did not authorise. The first step will be to oust the present Fianna Fail/Green government. The next step should be to seek and negotiate separate loans to ensure that vital public services can be provided. If the IMF and the EU/ECB fail to provide these at minimum interest rates, the Irish people should approach China and other newly developed or developing economies and ask them to provide loans, which could be guaranteed with food exports that many of these countries will urgently need.
A prosperous new year is not beyond the creative capacity of the Irish people, provided we target the real criminals and find out who our real friends are.
Dr Edward Horgan,
Drugs exposure in public interest
Sir -- May I commend the Sunday Independent for your exposure of drug use within our national broadcaster. Whilst the revelations are, sadly, not surprising, they are, nevertheless, hugely in the public interest. Please keep up the good work.
John B. Reid,
Monkstown, Co Dublin