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Our dysfunctional political system is stopping me returning to Ireland

The letter written by Thomas Roddy (Irish Examiner, November 4) regarding the protest against water charges was published recently and is an excellent synopsis of why Ireland’s economic and general outlook is one of negativity and pessimism.

This is not a personal attack on the writer and merely an attempt to highlight a fundamental flaw in the Irish mentality. The person in question is far too busy finding the negative in a situation and wording clever eloquent witticisms regarding the purchase of water bottles and mobile phones to appreciate that it is the democratic right of the people to protest irrespective of his or my views on the validity of water charges or the erection of masts. I will not judge others right to protest; it is this freedom of speech and expression of opinion that democracy is founded upon. Ironically, the writer has taken his democratic right to articulate his disdain for people protesting and well done to him.

However, my main problem is that this attitude, whilst in some cases funny, serves as nothing more than an enabling mechanism for unhelpful, under-qualified, underachieving, underwhelming politicians such as Michael Noonan, enabling him to address important issues with pointless comments such as “We would never turn the immersion off if we had free electricity”. How someone can treat a sensitive issue with such disregard really highlights the sense of entitlement in the upper echelons of the Irish political system.

I am one of the many young Irish people who has left the country, not so much by economic misfortune but by a lack of patience and faith in the political system in Ireland and its inability to govern with any sense of fairness, any sense of accountability and any sense of understanding that the needs and wants of the people they serve are not being met.

The Irish Water debacle is nothing more than the straw that broke the camel’s back and a vehicle for people to voice their general discontent at Noonan, Enda Kenny, etc., and their continued attitude of treating people with self-righteous discourtesy and a vulgar egotism. Thankfully this latest scandalsfinally appears to have awoken up the masses.

Yes, I want to return to Ireland and raise my family in a country that has boundless potential, but it will take an enormous change in the make up of the Dáil for me to return – and I mean change on both sides of the house.

Until that transformation occurs I believe that the boundless potential of our people will remain bound up. I hope the spirit of the current revolt will not be gagged.

Donal Buckley


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