When left-wing and independent TDanna and councillors are being lifted off the streets or taken from their homes and constituency-offices by the Garda Síochána, when criminal prosecutions on the flimsiest of charges or offences are being vigorously pursued by the state through the courts against those same politicians, when some are being imprisoned in a manner clearly designed to intimidate and cower, and all under the aegis of a right-wing coalition government whose members are both terrified and appalled by an electorate they deem unworthy of judging them, then we are truly in one of the worse periods in the history of modern Irish politics. To add insult to injury, today’s events, deeply detrimental to our democratic way of life, come in the wake of revelations of wide-scale fraud and corruption by local government councillors, most of whom seem to be existing or former members of the main conservative political parties in the country, and none of whom have so far faced any legal censure or are likely to do so.
We once lived under the draconian authority of the so-called Irish Free State or Saorstát Éireann. Now, thanks to the machinations of Fine Gael and Labour, we are faced with a new Unfree State – a Daorstát Éireann. Let us use the ballot box early next year to send it and all those who have erected it into the electoral oblivion they so richly deserve.