Bertie’s people

On Bertie Ahern’s appearance at the Mahon Tribunal on Planning and Payments, what is it with the mass media’s obsession with hearing the ‘voice of the people’ at Dublin Castle? Almost every report on the radio that I’ve heard in the last 24 hours has been about talking to Joe and Jo Soap to find out their reaction to his appearance. Is that there’s nothing else to report perhaps because many of the journo hacks were too lazy to take some time to understand the arguments inside?

I’ve also noticed that the accents in these reports give a lot more away than the listener might be aware: tabloid readers love Bertie, broadsheet readers are confused by procedure. Sorry, that should read working class people think he’s great, middle class people don’t know what to make of all of this. Quite apart from the insular nature of much of this discussion – including mine – there is one more thing about this. For every working class person you hear lauding Bertie and that he’s a man being hounded by the press, there are thousands more who are sick of the lies and half-truths told by the man both inside and outside the Tribunal rooms. Can we have some broader representation of the facts please?

Last night I also saw Twenty Major’s name as a contributor to the new edition of Dubliner magazine on a poster near Harcourt Street. Rather than bah humbug, good luck to him, hope it’s a good gig. Just don’t expect me to turn up in Mongrel just like John Ryan’s brother, Larry.