Politics and patronage


Sir, – Fintan O’Toole is being haughty and condescending toward the electorate by comparing them to “poodles who, if they perform the right tricks in the polling booths, will be rewarded with special treats, just for them” (“Will Election 2020 be another story of cynical politics and patronage?”, Opinion, January 14th).

On the contrary, many potential voters are deeply concerned about national rather than personal or local issues, such as homelessness, housing and access to healthcare. The seeming inability of our elected representatives to sort out these chronic problems can lead to voter despair and apathy, rather than the desire to have our tummies tickled by conniving TDs looking for easy votes. – Yours, etc,



Co Westmeath.

Sir, – Fintan O’Toole seems to be suggesting that all politics is local.

Who knew! – Yours, etc,



Dublin 6.