Tory attacks on the Euro in the wake of the Irish bail-out display a scary concoction of goldfish memory and totemic dogma.
The recent bail-out for the Irish Republic, in which the EU and the IMF will lend 90bn euros (£77bn) and the UK about £7bn, has triggered a textbook case of rampant ideological poison.
Instead of focusing on the blatant Tory faux-pas of hailing last year's savage cuts in the Republic (look at this gem here, absolutely priceless), the rampant ideologues are now clinging on to a convenient red herring: the Euro -- that is to say, one of their top ideological pet hates.
Enter uber-Tories like eurosceptic fundamentalist Dan Hannan MEP, whose blog on the Telegraph website oozes more totemic certainty than a North Korean ideological textbook. Apparently, Ireland is in a rut simply because of the Euro (here) and supporters of the Euro should apologise (here).
Now, this blog here is not particularly keen on the Euro either.
But it's ridiculous, nothing less, that some people can cling on to such levels of ideological blindness without even remotely pretending to be looking at the facts.
Suddenly it's as though the crash that sent shockwaves across the planet had never started in the US (currency: the Dollar) and never required a bailout that cost well into the trillions.
It's as if the UK (currency: Pound Sterling) did not need a mammoth £850bn to hold off the most devastating domino effect in history in the wake of a fat bubble that lasted until 2008.
It's as if Dubai (currency: the UAE dirham) did not see its property bubble burst last year, and Iceland (currency: Icelandic Krona) did not experience patterns familiar to the Irish -- unprecendented expansion followed by near bankruptcy.
Robert Peston made the point on the BBC website that what happened across the Irish sea wasn't miles away from Britain's problem. Literally.
It's a fact that some of the biggest casualties of the crisis were not part of the Eurozone, while others where (Greece, Ireland). Similarly, some of the countries that best weathered the storm were in the Eurozone (look at Germany and France) and some weren't (Denmark, Sweden).
No pattern was related to either currency or scale of the economy. Like Philippe Legraine wrote in the Financial Times, the only thing all the major victims have in common is a background of predatory lending which fuelled unsustainable levels of financial and property speculation.