Your recent excellent editorial – ‘People voted for change, not squabbling politicians’ (Irish Independent, February 25) – raises some solid concerns that merit heeding.
It sketches what radical change might look like: no homeless children dining on hotel bedroom floors, none of the highest mortgage rates in the EU.
However, perhaps the oddest omission was the enormous “elephant in the room”: how to commence nationally managing unrestricted mass migration inflows from all 200 countries in the world and the various vast continents.
Another major challenge entails the strengthening of Ireland’s long held tradition of military neutrality, ie non-alignment.
Finally, a good past precedent to be guided by in the current complicated context – political and parliamentary – is the grand complex coalition, ie the inter-party administration of the late 1940s led by Fine Gael’s John A Costello supported by the Clann na Poblachta state’s leader, Seán McBride.
Possibly a lot could be learned?
Ireland a cash cow for Brussels bureaucracy
In an article ‘Ireland risks paying more but getting less in EU budget now we’re out of poor camp’ (Irish Independent, February 24), it was stated: “In the last year for which figures are available, it is clear the balance has finally shifted and Ireland has paid in more than €200m a year than it took back.” Interesting opinion, but the facts are different.
The Department of Finance Budgetary Statistics 2018 published on November 14, 2019 shows Ireland has been a net contributor to the EU budget since 2013, and the last year for which figures are available, 2018, Ireland was a net contributor of €720m.
In an ‘Agriland’ article of the same day, Simon Coveney says the EU Commission is currently looking for a gross national contribution from Ireland of about €3.4bn.
This would mean Ireland’s net contribution will be doubling by 2021 to roughly €1.5bn per year.
This is a lot of money which could buy a properly priced children’s hospital every year, and certainly help dig us out of the housing and health crises we are currently experiencing.
Perhaps putting Irish interests first rather than acting as a cash cow for an over-bloated bureaucracy in Brussels, which helps to make and impose EU laws upon us, would be a better plan of action for the country as whole.
As it stands in matters of EU competence, EU law is superior to Irish law, the Irish Constitution and Supreme Court – what a scandal. Since 1973 we are no longer an independent sovereign republic.
In my opinion, it’s time to weigh up and debate the contemporary pros and cons of EU membership.
Irish Freedom Party, Fairview Strand, Dublin 3
Coronavirus starving all other issues of oxygen
“Starve a fever, feed a cold,” is the old advice.
When it comes to the coronavirus it seems to be starve all other issues of oxygen and feed the public nothing but Covid-19.
The Church has nothing to fear from its role in WWII
Some commentators are making much of the opening of the Vatican WWII archives.
From a Catholic perspective there’s nothing to worry about.
Two distinguished/eminent Jewish historians have written in very complimentary terms about the positive role of the Catholic Church – and the Pope in particular – during this horrific period.
Martin Gilbert in his work ‘The Righteous: The Unsung Heroes of the Holocaust’ recounts the achievements of the extraordinary Catholics who, under the leadership of Pope Pius XII, rescued Jews at great peril to themselves and the Church in Nazi occupied Europe.
For example, 75pc of Rome’s Jewish population was sheltered in Catholic institutions, including the Vatican.
Mr Gilbert also makes the pertinent point that after Jews, Catholics were the main victims of the Nazis’ genocide.
Rabbi David Dalin (‘The Myth of Hitler’s Pope’) endorses Gilbert’s scholarship.
He describes Pope Pius XII as “a protector and friend of the Jewish people at a moment in history when it mattered most”.
The corollary of the above, of course, is that National Socialism (Nazism) was first and foremost a secular ideology.
It was simply a right-wing version of International Socialism. Both had their origins in virulently anti-religious ideologues.
Navan, Co Meath