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Bowed and cowed

The most sickening aspect of this once proud sovereign nation as it continues to spiral ever downwards is the voluntary castration of our political leadership.

It is quite clear that Fine Gael and Labour, having clung for so long to the flimsy coat tails of ''some day our turn will come'' have fallen into the classic trap of ''going native'' within a wet week of donning the mantle of power.

This administration has flip-flopped from the hollow, populist rhetoric that got them elected to cowing down to the same senior civil servants who always call the shots. This is the same coterie of civil servants who are so imbued with the very flawed notion of a United States of Europe that they insist we blindly follow whatever diktat emanates from the mouths of eurocrats.

It is galling to listen to Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney trot out blatant nonsense about the consequences of us not paying out on the bets to the punters who have acquired, at a huge discount, the unsecured bondholder paper in Anglo.

It is grossly offensive to our intelligence to hear the Government spinning last week's bond swaps as a triumph when the reality is that this is nothing more than an ECB-orchestrated stunt to support this week's fiscal compact sign-off.

There is no point in having a voice if we do not use it when all of our sensibilities are telling us that we are being led by muppets who lack the vision and courage to stand up and fight for their people and stop warning us that our image abroad is more important than doing the best they can for us.

Patrick Byrne

Goatstown, Dublin 14

Irish Independent