Letters to the Editor: 'Public service cards make life easy, data fears just paranoia'

I’m 67 and have worked hard all my life. I am in receipt of one of those famous – or now infamous – PSCs (public service cards).

Quite honestly it has made my life so much easier and much simpler. No more having to prove one’s address, no more carrying passports as proof of identity – just slide the card forward. As for accessing transport, it’s simple and amazing.

For once, and for all people of my age, I have to congratulate the Government for producing a perfect and very simple system which makes using the card very easy and seamless.

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Yet some genius has discovered (as far as I can see) a stupid loophole related to data protection – to my mind a phrase up there with “health and safety” that can be used to destroy almost any good and practical idea.

Anybody with half a brain can see the merits of the present system simply because it works. People of my generation find it simple to use. Nobody has died and nobody has gone to prison.

So what’s the big problem? Personally I think a bit of good old common sense would be of great help here, but maybe I’m out of touch and that’s now been deemed unconstitutional as well.

As a doctor, I will admit data protection has its good points. But on the other hand has produced a lot of paranoia, suspicion and division. I think the dreaded in-word now is “major data breach”, akin to a large jail breakout.

God help us all because a new system will cost a multiple of millions – monies we can’t afford to waste.

Dr Aidan Hampson

Artane, Dublin 5 

Regina’s way with words  may come back to haunt her

Defending the roll-out of the public service card as a national ID card without any clear legal basis, Social Protection Minister Regina Doherty said the card was “mandatory but not compulsory”.

Having presided over the PSC debacle, will the same formula now apply to the minister’s resignation?

Dr John Doherty (no relation)

Gaoth Dobhair, Co Dhún na nGall

Cows will need guns to survive neo-liberals’ hot air

If the hysterically precious get their way, cows will become extinct.

No more will the claims of those friendly females and their close family members being responsible for climate change and ozone damage remain the catchcry. Oh, they “fixed” it!

Yeah right.

No, the new source of climate damage will in future come from the rancid farts of the neo-liberals – the “healthy” yet pale, the gentle ones, the vegan/vegetarian gods – who have taken over the world with nary a whimper  from the rest of us humans in the real world.

I’m reminded of the song writer Dana Lyons who, with great foresight, wrote his classic song ‘Cows With Guns’ some time ago.

It tells the story of a cattle uprising to stave off their plight of humble milk-giver.

But in their spirited bid to break free from the human food chain, these bovine dreamers could never have concieved they might become useless on the grassy plains they meander, that they would simply be phased  out as a species, or worse, face a mass cull.

I don’t know what we two-legged hapless humans will be expected to eat when we begin to have failing health from lack of proper food.

There is a line from Dana’s classic which goes:

‘We will fight for bovine freedom

And hold our large heads high

We will run free with the Buffalo – or die,

Cows with guns…”

Good luck with that, dear friends.

Robert Sullivan

Bantry, Co Cork

A Labour leader by any other name

I read this tweet recently: “Unless Jeremy Corbyn is a very stupid man, he understands there is no majority in parliament for a [UK] government, in any circumstances, led by him. Not for a minute, an hour, a day. More cynical games from him. Under another Labour figure, it’s possible.” Why is this writer so riled up?

What is Jeremy Corbyn so cynical about? That he stands up for the poor, the NHS, the working class? That he wants to take on corporate greed?

That his proposal is to bring in a government that taxes business and wealthy individuals enough to deliver proper public services? That he wants to prevent a no-deal Brexit and have a second referendum?

Originally I assumed it must have been posted by a Conservative MP.

But no, Gavin Shuker MP is a former member of the Labour Party who stood down in February this year and became an independent.

Is this is the best that Twitter can do – provide a platform for poorly thought through personalised vitriol?

Game over.

Alison Hackett

Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin

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