So the Republic of Ireland, given the extraordinary financial crisis it finds itself in, would not exist as a functioning entity if it were not for our European colleagues together with the IMF bailing the State out.
One thus has to ask, if the Republic had never joined the European Monetary Union (EMU) would the mess be as big? You would have to strongly think not. Yes, the entry into the EU and then the EMU provided us with enormous benefits -- financial, infrastructural, even social. But we are now seeing the true price of joining the EU 'party'. Was the 'high' worth it?
If only we had been as wise as some of the Nordic countries or, whisper it, our nearest neighbour to the east.
Belfast, Co Antrim