Love, hate or fear Brexit?


Sir, – A Leavy states “in terms of European co-operation, Brexit is indefensible” (Letters, February 20th).

One could also argue that in terms of national sovereignty and democracy, the EU is indefensible.

The love affair Ireland has with the EU is nauseating at best. I would argue that if the EU legalised cannibalism Ireland would still have no political party that would be against EU membership.

Germany is entering recession and the French people have had enough of president Macron. The EU is failing. Yet if you read the letters in this newspaper one would think the EU was the land of milk and honey.

The EU has massive structural and political problems which, if not fixed, will ensure that the UK will not be the last country to leave it. – Yours, etc, 


Causeway Bay,

Hong Kong.

Sir, – I find Eoin Drea’s article (Opinion, February 20th) in support of Brexit full of broad statements but short on detail.

He ignores the fact that most of our exports either go to, or through, England with consequential customs barriers. Our opposition to tax changes has nothing to do with England and everything to do with FDI. The pro-Atlanticist vision he sets out sounds great, but what changes can we make to the existing situation without EU approval?

Most the jobs coming to Ireland probably would be in the financial and professional services area which already appear to have a shortage of skilled labour. These would be of little benefit for the wider economy. Ignoring the security situation, I hope Brexit does not happen. – Yours, etc,


Dundalk, Co Louth.

Sir, – Fintan O’Toole’s rich irony (“The English Love of eccentricity has turned sour”, Opinion, February 19th) would not have been lost on Lewis Carroll, the poet laureate of satire as self-mockery.

In the prophetic character of the Bellman in The Hunting of the Snark he portrayed the dysfunctional leader of a hilariously chaotic crew bent on a voyage of (managed?) self-destruction. His most solemn injunction to his witless team was this: “What I tell you three times is true.”

Would you believe “Brexit is Brexit is Brexit”? – Yours, etc,


Stillorgan, Co Dublin.

Sir, – Many of us are agog at the British approach to Brexit since the referendum in 2016; and March 29th is almost upon us. The following insight may explain why the British appear to have very little fear of the uncertainty that Brexit might bring.

Geert Hofstede’s Insights research shows that the dimension “uncertainty avoidance” has to do with the way that a society deals with the fact that the future can never be known; should we try to control the future or just let it happen? The uncertainty avoidance index is defined as a society’s tolerance for ambiguity, in which people embrace or avert an event of something unexpected, unknown, or away from the status quo. Societies that score a high degree in this index opt for stiff codes of behaviour, guidelines, laws, and generally rely on absolute truth, or the belief that one lone truth dictates everything and people know what it is.

A lower degree in this index shows more acceptances of differing thoughts or ideas. At 35 the UK has a low score on uncertainty avoidance which means that as a nation they are quite happy to wake up not knowing what the day brings and they are happy to “make it up as they go along”, changing plans as new information comes to light. The British are comfortable in ambiguous situations – the term “muddling through” is a very British way of expressing this. – Yours, etc,