Getting to know Emmanuel Macron
Sir, – It was so heartening to see Emmanuel Macron being elected by the French people. Like our own President, he has philosophy running through his veins. We hear very harsh discourse nowadays in politics and the media. It is time that we include words and ideas in our conversations that enrich our societies, give hope and meaning to people and nourish our deepest selves. – Yours, etc,
ANNE MARIE MORAN,
Sir, – The idea that Emmanuel Macron is a “centrist” is spin. Mr Macron is pro-market, globalisation and deregulation, positions of the far right, and the creators of the divisions and disaffection that are manifesting themselves in many jurisdictions. And lest there be any doubt of Mr Macron’s plan to put money first and people second, he confirmed his right-wing credentials with a pledge to “revamp labour laws”. This is code for measures to reduce worker protections and allow a full attack on pay and conditions, the very policy that has led to the disastrous widening of the socio-economic gap here that has brought poverty and misery to thousands.
It is simply not possible to reconcile Mr Macron’s stated views with the pursuit of a fair and just society. After decades of deregulation and allowing the market take precedence over all else, inequity, in all its guises, has flourished and is the most serious issue facing all of Europe.
The hope is that the French electorate is fully aware of the dangers and will ensure that their new president is not given a free hand to pursue his fantasies. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Interesting to note that in a country that values the separation of church and state, the citizens of the French republic have elected Emmanuel Macron as their president.
Emmanuel is Hebrew for “God is with us”. Raised in a non-religious family, Emmanuel Macron was baptised a Roman Catholic at his own request at age 12 and later attended a Jesuit college.
Being a person of faith has not disbarred him from high office in a secular state, apparently, or been a cause of embarrassment for him at the polling booths. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – The majority of EU member state leaders breathed a huge sigh of relief that the French people elected Emmanuel Macron by a sizable margin on Sunday. Messages of congratulations emerged from all western leaders, including Enda Kenny. But perhaps the relief felt by the Taoiseach and the Government might also be combined with a feeling of anxiety.
Mr Macron is a federalist and is an advocate of further integration in the euro zone countries and that could be damaging to Ireland’s corporate tax rate. Tax harmonisation and economic convergence are central policies for Mr Macron, and when asked about Ireland’s corporate tax rate, he highlighted the need for corporate tax policy to be equal across the euro zone.
Mr Macron is set to take a hard-line stance with the British government during the Brexit negotiations, which eliminates any lingering hopes from the Irish Government of a soft Brexit. The British government now faces a powerful adversary in Mr Macron and this could be to the detriment of Irish interests.
These two issues are important to Ireland and the Government will need to create close ties with Mr Macron to ensure that Ireland’s interests are protected during Brexit but also that Irish tax affairs remain in the control of the Irish State. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Dr Stephen J Costello (May 9th) advocates that Fianna Fáil should now embrace centrist pro-European policies. There is a first time for everything. He seems to have missed that there already is a centrist pro-European party that advocates individual liberty and social solidarity. Perhaps instead of advocating a change in policy for his tribe, he could support a party which already espouses his stated values, Fine Gael. – Yours, etc,