I think all parties agree that this astonishing number of children in the arms, on the backs or on the heels of their mothers and often of their fathers in the present deplorable state of the kingdom is a very great additional sadness; And anyone who could find a fair, cheap and simple way to make these children healthy and useful members of the community would win so well with the public that his statue would be erected for a guardian of the nation. One of the things that made the Irish so poor was their relationship with land ownership. Most Irish farmers did not own the land they owned, but were tenants of landlords. Many of these owners were English, and they lived far from their country. As a result, they did not have to deal with the results of their policies. Irish farmers have hardly taken advantage of their work: they have sold almost all of their annual harvest to pay rent. That`s what Swift means by saying, “Most parents have already devoured.” He satirically expands a very real situation and essentially asks the owners: “You already eat most of their work, so why not eat their children too?” This also suggests a kind of dramatic irony: Swift will discuss something to improve the lives of these beggars. It does, but not as readers might expect. I admit that this meal will be a bit expensive and therefore very good for the owners who, as they have already devoured most parents, seem to have the best title for children. This line is a fine example of the irony of the situation and rhetorical positioning. Readers who take this line literally might expect Swift to offer a modest idea. However, the second sentence, which claims that no one will object, shows the irony of the situation and the proposal it must follow. Many people, including Swift, have tried to solve the problem of Anglo-Irish relations.
None of the solutions have been successful. There has also been a considerable active debate about what to do. Swift has made several proposals. They were all rejected. To claim that no one would object to such a situation is a great reversal of the current situation, a kind of ironic exaggeration. In 1729, when Swift published this essay, he had made for decades more traditional proposals on how to improve the Irish condition. It is a moment of bitterness at his alleged lack of success. In the statement, he is also positioned rhetorically.
This shows that this proposal was not the work of a madman. Instead, excessive frustration prompted Swift to do so. Swift says in essence: “I tried everything else, and nothing worked!” This one long sentence is the whole second paragraph. In this document, Swift establishes common ground with her reader and says that everyone in Ireland agrees that it is serious to have so many poor beggars in the country. Then he follows him with a statement that works as a statement if/then in logic: if someone could find a solution, then that person would be a national hero.