Iain Gray, leader of Scottish Labour, at First Minister’s Questions in March 2011:
A few weeks later, Gray had resigned after just barely holding onto his own seat by around 150 votes as Alex Salmond led the SNP to a historic landslide victory.
Luckily, Gray’s successor learned from his embarrassing hubris, for if there’s one thing Scottish Labour ensure us they’re really good at, it’s learning lessons.
Our undercover agent inside Labour (whose identity we can’t reveal, other than their codename “Nasa Warsar”) just leaked us this internal security-camera footage from both the Scottish and UK party HQs at the time of Johann Lamont’s resignation.
We’re sure readers can work out who’s who.
We have many faults, but we try our hardest to ensure that hypocrisy isn’t one of them, so we’re not about to turn round and pay tribute to Johann Lamont just because she’s quit her job. We’re sure she’s a nice person in real life, but for three years the Scottish Labour “leader” has lived a lie, railing bitterly against London control while doing everything she could to impose that very fate on the people of Scotland.
(And ultimately succeeding, in so far as one could say that the mainly-absent Lamont could claim to have played any meaningful part in the referendum campaign.)
She leaves her party in the same abject state she found it, its position in the polls if anything slightly worse than it was after the SNP’s historic landslide victory in 2011. Her only achievement was to give Scottish Labour’s bitter, spiteful, tribal hatred of the Nats an accurate-looking corporeal manifestation, her face invariably contorted at First Minister’s Questions into a snarl of naked loathing for an opponent who’d done nothing other than successfully co-opt what used to be considered traditional “Labour values” after Labour abandoned them in pursuit of Middle England votes.
But we will say one thing for her – she went out with a bang.
The Daily Record last month:
But that’s not even the funny bit.
It’s been a very slow news day today and it’s chucking it down outside, so we found ourselves stuck for entertainment. Earlier this afternoon alert readers will have noticed us tweeting about breaking through 35,000 Twitter followers, and while we were comparing that to various other entities for our own amusement (eg it’s over 10,000 more followers than Scottish Labour, the Scottish Conservatives and the Scottish Lib Dems put together), we stumbled across this feature from 16 months ago.
And because – as readers of our Panelbase polling features will know – there’s nothing we like more than the occasional wallow in some stats, we got to work.
It’s the beaten side who are supposed to lose their minds. But we couldn’t resist sharing with you two articles by Labour activists today whose authors have studied the last decade of Scottish politics and arrived at the conclusion that the salvation of Scottish Labour lies in… ramping up the arrogance and hating the SNP more.
Oh, you’re going to love these.
From today’s Media Guardian:
The BBC faced intense criticism of bias in its coverage of the referendum from pro-independence supporters, with a demonstration outside the corporation’s Glasgow headquarters and participants unfurling a banner calling for political editor Nick Robinson to be sacked.”
It’s worth taking just a few lines to examine those stats more closely.
Today’s Herald carries a report from the initial meeting of the Smith Commission on “enhanced devolution” for the Scottish Parliament. The paper quotes from what seems to be a press release issued by the Commission, in which it explains that it thinks the people of Scotland are idiotic, drooling simpletons who’ll swallow anything.
The Labour-friendly elements of the press made much play yesterday of an Ipsos MORI poll which showed an unusually high level of support in the UK for remaining in the EU (while ignoring one by YouGov that showed a majority in favour of leaving).
But a piece in today’s Times throws the reality into sharp relief, and illustrates why the Yes movement hasn’t simply lain down and died after losing the referendum.
Johann Lamont, Scottish Labour conference, March 2014:
And here’s what that means seven months later, in terms of the submissions of the five Holyrood parties to the Smith Commission on devolved powers:
Imagine if they WEREN’T the party of devolution, eh readers?