Brexit talks – deal or no deal?


Sir, – Despite the absence of bowler hats, Friday’s front-page image (October 11th) of a lean Taoiseach, hands in pockets, towering over a portly Boris Johnson, hands on hips, both in suits, seemed to demand the headline, “Another fine mess you’ve gotten me into”. – Yours, etc,



Co Cork.

A chara, – Using a wedding venue, Thornton Manor, for divorce talks? That’s novel. – Is mise,



Inis Corthaidh,

Co Loch Garman.

Sir, – My eight-year-old son Adam asked a question last night after hearing the news on the radio. “Dad, is Brexit not over yet? It’s been going on since I was five!” – Yours, etc,


Lucan, Co Dublin.

Sir, – Surely innovative solutions can be found by the UK, Ireland and the EU in order for the people of Northern Ireland to show their consent to a particular “backstop” solution, in addition to, or instead of, the Northern Ireland Assembly having a vote.

We should look to the exemplar of direct democracy, Switzerland. Not only do Swiss citizens regularly vote in mandatory and optional referendums on constitutional changes and acts of parliament, the people themselves can launch policy initiatives to amend the federal constitution, where 100,000 signatures from eligible voters are gathered, and where certain other conditions are met. Cantonal popular initiatives have a wider scope to propose new laws, not just constitutional amendments. The federal parliament and the federal council (the government of Switzerland) can then propose a counter-proposal to a popular initiative.

The vibrant and forward-thinking tradition of direct democracy in the Swiss Confederation has much to teach us. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 3.

Sir, – More talk and yet more photo-opportunities. We’re not out of the woods yet. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 8.

Sir, – How fortuitous Wrightbus has been saved just in time for the DUP to be thrown under one of its products. – Yours, etc,


Mount Brown,

Dublin 8.

Sir, – How come with all the coverage of Brexit, I have not seen many column inches concerning Eurovision? Who can forget such UK entries as ”Are You Sure?”(1961), “Boom Bang A Bang” (1969), “Making Your Mind Up” (1981), “Why Do I Always Get It Wrong?” (1989), “Better the Devil You Know” (1993), “Flying the Flag” (2007) not to mention “Puppet on a String” (1967) or “Come Back” (2002)? Personally I will miss the British if they do leave, and I’m off now to listen to some Butch Moore. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 16.

A chara,– As we approach closing time for Brexit and we edge closer to a deal, it’s as if someone has shouted “last orders”. Who will drive the UK home? – Is mise,



Co Dublin.