Dublin: 11 °C Monday 17 June, 2024
Think on, Bertie: Commenters had strong words for Mr Ahern after the publication of this week's report from the Mahon Tribunal. Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland
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Top 10 readers' comments of the week

Here’s our round-up of the wittiest, most thought-provoking and original comments you lot made this week. Did you make it in?

EVERY WEEK HERE, we take a look back at all the comments left on the site during the week and pick out the ones that most grabbed our attention.

It’s our way of highlighting the strongest, funniest and most-thought provoking things that you lot have said over the past few days.

This week, the publication of the final report from the Mahon Tribunal has obviously exercised a lot of you – as did the death of an Irishman in Venezuela, the demise of face-to-face communication between teens, the household charge and… did St Patrick rid Ireland of ancient crocodiles?

In no particular order, here are the standout comments from the week…

The household charge is still enraging people but Christy Nolan had an interesting note on how it might split Labour. Who could this “new boy” be?

The April Labour Party Conference will do away with the household charge. The rank and file Labour members are up in arms over it and some of the backbenchers are very unhappy. How can Gilmore sell FG policies to the Labour delegates and voters. A stormy conference is predicted with a new leftwinger running for the chairmanship/president. The new boy is gaining support from councillors from various parts of the country and the top brass are trying to stop him. Watch this space.

After the head of Relationships Ireland told that technology can pose a threat to interpersonal relationships, we asked if you agreed. protOtype agreed (slightly abridged comment):

I think it all depends on what you’ve grown up with. As a kid for me, social networks weren’t a big thing. Kids didn’t own mobile phones and if you wanted to chat to your friends, you either called them or embraced the wilderness and met face to face.

I think today, this has changed for the worse. It seems today that teens all have mobile phones. They all use social networks. Texting is a massive part of teenage life. Kids today would rather chat to their mates on FB or through text than meet with them.

I feel that if this continues, we’re going to see future generations that are more comfortable behind a screen than chatting to someone’s face. It may not seem a huge problem at first but things like job interviews could completely throw future generations. Self confidence in physical meetings could prove a drain as the only self confidence these kids will have is through a screen.

Kemberlee Shortland, however, felt technology had served to improve her contact with friends (with a warning note at the end!):

I don’t think technology has made communicating worse, but I think it’s down to perspective. As an American expat, I think Skype is the greatest invention next to air travel. I can see and chat with family anywhere in the world. I’ve also hooked up with long lost friends through media sites and eventually use Skype to take the next step in regaining communications. In fact, I’m giving a course on Wednesday via Skype because I can’t make it to the university to talk in person. So technology has great scores on that count.

But for those without a backbone, breaking up with a partner via text is beyond socially acceptable words.

Mr Nedmund couldn’t resist a pun on reports of egg prices going up because of an EU-wide egg shortage. A pun en francais, if you don’t mind.

I dunno, seems fair an-oeuf.

And Gerard Murphy wanted to know:

Sorry, how much will we have to shell out for eggs now?

While the contents of the Mahon Tribunal report provoked much anger, Jill Keogh Murphy (on’s Facebook page) focused on the 15 years it took the inquiry to get from inception to publication:

I have graduated, got married, bought two houses, had three kids, six different cars, 3 cats, 23 goldfish, redecorated my kitchen twice. What the hell were they doing?

Peter Nolan regretted the delay in the publication too but wrote:

To be fair, we do only know about the extent of Ahern’s financial oddities *because* of the tribunal. If only the tribunal had worked a little faster so he wouldn’t have been able to pull his ‘I’ll explain later, it’ll all make sense, promise’ wool over the electorate’s eyes in the election before last, Ireland would have been better off.

Yes, there are better ways to do it — the primary failing being the inability to hold anyone to account in any way more meaningful that public shaming — but uncovering this information has still been a great service.

And it seemed Bertie Ahern’s travails occupied a good deal of the chat about the report. Arch Stanton quipped:

Now if any of that money was used to buy garlic, WE’VE GOT HIM!

Our Twitter followers were in flying one-liner form too. In resp0nse to our story about the crocodiles who inhabited Ireland in ancient times – and for the week that was in it – Peter Nelson @_peterdn tweeted:

@thejournal_ie proving St Patrick was even more badass than we all thought!

And we wonder what you think of this last comment. The death of an Irishman in Venezuela, as a result of what is suspected to have been an attempt to smuggle drugs in his body, prompted some less-than-sympathetic remarks from some readers. This was Adrian De Cleir‘s response to those comments:

People post alot of nonsense here that goes far beyond an opinion. When people speak here they say stuff that they would never say publicly to a crowd, they talk as if they are talking to a bunch of mates in private. Alot of the stuff said in alot of comments, people wouldnt dare ring up a radio show and say the same thing. For 2 reasons, 1. they probably don’t even mean it half the time, and 2: anonymity…..Keyboard Warriors

They dont realize that what they say is being published just like a newspaper, or is being broadcast in an equivalent way as it would be on the radio or TV. 1000s of people read the articles, including family of people in said articles, and there’s nothing more annoying than sifting through trolls and people that dont really care what they are saying.

Basically , when you post something, you’re not talking to your mates, you are publishing it to the public.

What do you think? Do you agree with Adrian?

Spot a comment which you think should make the list next week? Mail it to

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