If there is one big casualty in the financial mess / bailout it's Ireland's love affair with Europe, the EU. That's over. People have had the wool removed from their eyes.
Even the nation's most committed Europhiles no longer refer to 'our partners in Europe'. Partners! That was the word used by everyone in the main parties for the past two decades or more. Partners.
Partners don't do to a partner what's being done to Ireland, unless they're going through an acrimonious split. That's what this feels like only we're not splitting but being forced to eat dirt and say "Please sir may I have some more" after each whack of the stick across our national back.
We have no "partners" in Europe. Quite clearly we're on our own. On our own to pay off the debts incurred in Ireland by private banks across the EU. We're being punished for not regulating what the ECB also spectacularly failed to regulate. This is not how partners behave.
We have no partners. We had competitors, but they're gradually morphing into enemies. Every politician who calls to my door will have the same question put to him/her: Do we have partners in Europe? Anyone who says yes, will NOT get my vote.