Scottish independence, plus jokes.

Wings Over Scotland


As others see us

Posted on May 01, 2012 by

Apologies for the tinny sound, but this clip from English-language channel Russia Today is worth a watch, particularly the middle section:

News stations, of course, have their own agendas, but it’s always interesting to see an outsider’s viewpoint on how Britain’s national broadcaster handles certain issues. We’re huge fans of the BBC on a UK-wide level, and have no problem with the idea or level of the licence fee, but we find it a little surprising that anyone would even expect it to be impartial on the subject of Scottish independence.

Far from being a neutral observer, the BBC has a direct and entirely tangible vested interest when it comes to the matter of whether Scotland stays in the UK or not. Scottish licence fees provide the Corporation with around £300m a year in revenue (about 9% of the total), but it only spends around 6% of its money in Scotland.

Even that proportion is a result of some substantial recent increases – just a few years ago the figure was as low as 3.7%, or considerably less than half what Scotland contributed to the BBC coffers, so the accumulated net “profit” the Corporation has made from Scottish viewers and listeners over the years is measured in billions.

Of that £300m, approximately a third is actually spent on BBC Scotland to make programmes of specifically Scottish interest and another third on Scotland-based production of UK-wide shows, with the final third used to subsidise the BBC’s UK-wide operations. With the Corporation’s funding under attack from the coalition government (leading to a planned reduction in BBC Scotland’s budget to £86m by 2016/17), the potential loss of approximately £100m of net revenue every year from Scottish licence-fee payers should the country vote for independence is one it can ill afford.

So regardless of the bias or otherwise of individual journalists, the bigger picture is in pin-sharp high definition: Scottish independence is directly, measurably and substantially contrary to the interests of the BBC. It’s a fact worth keeping in mind.

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78 to “As others see us”

  1. Morag says:

    The BBC being virulently pro-Labour and pro-Union would be less of an issue if there was reasonably balanced presentation in the rest of the media.  But STV is much the same as the BBC, in fact they seem like Tweedledum and Tweedledee, and the press is even worse, with the constant barrage of “SNP accused” headlines and “we’d all be doomed!” scare stories.

    Of course newspapers have their own political biases, but the balance should be present across the spectrum.  It isn’t there.  No matter which quality newspaper you pick up, it’s the same editorial line.  To wee, too poor, too stupid, and besides we won’t let you (and Alex Salmond is smug and fat and a dictator so there).

    Against this backdrop, if Salmond did see political benefit from being supportive of Murdoch’s bid for BSkyB, as well as believing it to be beneficial for Scottish employment opportunities, I wouldn’t blame him.  But it seems it’s OK for Labour and the Tories to have newspapers that cosy up to them and present these parties’ line, but if it looks as if the SNP might be about to get a newspaper onside, suddenly it’s smear and sleaze and “Salmond accused”.

    Ideally, one of our two main quality newspapers would be presenting the case for independence.  I for one am tired of the unremitting diet of gloom and terror.  The BBC is just a part of this, but when there’s no balance anywhere else, of course it’s going to be an issue.

  2. Longshanker says:

    “…the bigger picture is in pin-sharp high definition: Scottish independence is directly, measurably contrary to the interests of the BBC. It’s a fact worth keeping in mind.”

    Particularly given Sun King Alex of Salmond’s bitter attacks on the BBC. In hindsight, the Sun King’s attacks could be viewed as something much more sinister. Murdoch’s outlets keep a relatively low key but consistent attack on the BBC; osmotic corrosion if you like.

    Seeing as Salmond is prepared to do clandestine work for Murdoch, could his BBC ‘dossier’ be part of a wider Murdoch strategy? I think we should be told.

    EXPERIMENTALLY EDITED BY REVSTU, JUST FOR LAUGHS. HIGHLIGHT BLANK AREA TO READ.

  3. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    Just a wee tip for future reference:

    “Particularly given Sun King Alex”

    That’s where everyone stopped reading.

  4. Tonia Wight says:

    One thing that bugs me a bit when people talk about spending of the BBC (and by the way the BBC P*** me off something chronic to the point I’ve stopped watching most of their news now), but receiving 9% of its income from Scotland but only spending 6% here isn’t necessarily terrible. It would be terrible if this money was spent purely in England, but my understanding is that it doesn’t. The BBC makes a lot of its ‘products’ abroad, so some of its funding necessarily gets spent elsewhere which I have no problem with. Having lived in Hong Kong one of the best things was being able to listen to BBC World. Certainly one of the reasons the BBC and China have such a bad relationship is because the BBC constantly provides a questioning stance available to China (unfortunately currently blocked to its residents) on China’s human rights. So in that sense I don’t mind only 6% of its revenue being spent here. If however all that money is being spent down south then yes, I have a big big problem.

    What I have a massive problem with is the terrible reporting up here. It strikes me that if the Scottish newsroom has to leave Glasgow then the world might end, or if they actually have to do some real journalism rather than being spoon fed by press releases (hence why every single crime is reported and not much else). Maybe this is too kind, as it suggests negligence rather than malice.

  5. Doug Daniel says:

    Longshanker, Stu is right – as soon as I read the words “Sun King” in reference to Salmond, I moved onto the next comment. You might as well just write “Generic anti-Alex Salmond comment” and save yourself a bit of typing.

  6. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “The BBC makes a lot of its ‘products’ abroad, so some of its funding necessarily gets spent elsewhere which I have no problem with.”

    Yes, clearly there’s nothing wrong with that. The point is that the BBC would have £100m less a year to spend anywhere if Scotland was independent (it would lose £300m in income and only save £200m in Scottish spending), so it shouldn’t be expected to be neutral on the subject.

  7. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @Doug Daniel

    Technically Sun-King is shorter than “Generic anti-Alex Salmond comment” so maybe hes already doing that…

    Of course he could just stick to A.S instead.

  8. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “You might as well just write “Generic anti-Alex Salmond comment” and save yourself a bit of typing.”

    If it wasn’t against my anti-censorship policy, I’d just delete anything that came after those words. Maybe I should edit them to white-on-white so you have to highlight them to read them..?

  9. Doug Daniel says:

    I must say, I love RT’s take on UK matters. When the BBC does a straw poll of people to figure out how they feel about independence in Scotland, they always manage to get more anti- than pro-indy, but the RT report around the time of the consultation launch found loads of pro-indy voices on the street in Edinburgh. I sometimes wonder if we should try and get RT to be our national broadcaster – they seem to do a better job of representing our views than the BBC!

    Now, which one is more accurate is obviously another matter altogether, but people tend to shape their opinions around the views of others they see expressing theirs…

    Oh, and noticed a few of the Scottish Independence Twitterati on that report! 

  10. Macart says:

    Yep, that’s a beauty from RT and no mistake. Do you guys reckon the beeb actually believes that nobody outside of these isles pays attention?

  11. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @RevStu – I think you need to leave the instructions on how to see Longshankers post visible.

  12. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    I generally take RT with a pinch of salt but at least it does give an alternative perspective on World major news issues and I find that refreshing form the droning support group for whatever London wants, aka the BBC.
     
    In particular I find Max Keiser light years beyond the BBC’s Robert Peston ( FFSake! ).
     
    In fact often Al Jazeera provides a more balanced view on news in the Middle East than the BBC.
     
    The fact that RT gives it to the BBC is, for me, an irony of ironies given the super left wing infiltration of the Scottish BBC and their anti SNP bias.

  13. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “I think you need to leave the instructions on how to see Longshankers post visible.”

    They are, aren’t they? It says “HIGHLIGHT BLANK AREA TO READ”.

  14. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “In fact often Al Jazeera provides a more balanced view on news in the Middle East than the BBC.”

    It is indeed a strange world where Al Jazeera, Russia Today and even the Iranian-backed Press TV often provide a fairer and more complete picture of Scottish affairs than the UK’s national broadcaster.

  15. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @RevStu – They are, aren’t they? It says “HIGHLIGHT BLANK AREA TO READ”.

    No, thats in white writing too.

  16. Colin Dunn says:

    Longshanker says:
    “Particularly given Sun King Alex . . ”
    Sorry Longshanker, but though I generally find your comments an interesting read this constant childishness is tiresome. And I say that as someone who is not an SNP member nor a huge fan of Alex Salmond. Cut it out, please.

  17. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “No, thats in white writing too.”

    Not for me it isn’t:

    http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=24l7mfq&s=6

    Just checked in a different browser where it wouldn’t be cached and it was fine there too.

  18. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @RevStu – OK… It’s showing up now.

  19. pa_broon says:

    Sometimes its hard to know why certain facets of the press are so anti independence, with the BBC its fairly clear though; with independence they face a decimation in terms of funding, what’s left of the UK does as well in terms of GDP.

    Its not just about the TV licence, its also about government subsidies, the BBC is basically underwritten by the UK government. I read somewhere that due to the accounting practices no one can say what kind of debt the BBC has hidden about the place. Rest assured, as with the banks what ever it is, it’ll be socialised.

    In terms of Murdoch, he’s being used as a focus point for all of this, I mean he’s no innocent, far from it but lets be honest, you have main stream political leaders, (i’m giving Salmond the benefit of the doubt & not including him in this group, I still think he’s different) big business, the banks and the press all engaged in a massive circle-jerk, i imagine you can guess who gets it in the eye when the fun reaches its peak.

  20. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    450 WingsLand Kudos Points are yours for that true rarity – an accurate usage of the word “decimation”.

    :D

  21. Longshanker says:

    EXPERIMENTALLY EDITED BY REVSTU, JUST FOR LAUGHS. HIGHLIGHT BLANK AREA TO READ.

    Yes. Clever stuff. Actions do indeed speak louder than words. 

    RevStu the self-righteous redacter.

    Well done. Ghandi would be proud of how clever you’ve been.

    Personally, I’m in stitches, surprisingly though, not at the actual joke. 

    One question.
     
    Which blank area do I highlight to get the ‘incontrovertible evidence’ I challenged you to provide from your Severin Carrol piece?

    This is the third time of asking, I’m still waiting and you’re still playing subterranean.  What have you got to hide other than your shameless hypocrisy?  

    @Doug Daniel

    Fair enough Doug, seeing as it’s you, I’ll refer to Salmond as FM from now on.    

    “I love RT’s take on UK matters”  

    The Keiser Report should be compulsive viewing for everyone.   I actually bought a Kilo of silver around Sep 2010 due to Keiser’s advice. I’m still up on the deal.

  22. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Which blank area do I highlight to get the ‘incontrovertible evidence’ I challenged you to provide from your Severin Carrol piece?”

    Just because you challenge me to provide something I never at any point claimed to possess doesn’t mean I have to do what you want, dear. That does not constitute “hypocrisy”, shameless or otherwise, nor has any part of any post of yours been “redacted” – it’s still fully visible if highlighted. I’m just seeking to encourage less juvenile standards of discussion without imposing actual censorship.

    “Ghandi would be proud of how clever you’ve been.”

    He’d have been pissed off at how you spelled his name, though.

  23. peter says:

    “Ghandi would be proud of how clever you’ve been.”
    “He’d have been pissed off at how you spelled his name, though.”
     
    that made me laugh!
     

  24. Seasick Dave says:

    I like Longshanker; the wee nod to the baddy from history, the contrarian viewpoints and, best of all, the rhyming slang moniker.

    I’ll bet he’s a short arse though :)

  25. Richard McHarg says:

    Irrespective of any opinions expressed on any posts on any blog, newspaper or FB page, none of it makes Scotland unviable as an independent nation.
    If you have a positive mentality, with vision, talent, and ambition, you’ll make anything work. 
    Fortunately, we have a party in government with these attributes, while those that ‘canny’ are in the opposition seats.
    I’d rather have Salmond on good terms with Murdoch than Cameron, Clegg or Miliband using his papers to keep us in the Union.  I want independence, and I’d cut cards with the devil to achieve it, rather than see my children grow up in a bankrupt Britain.

  26. Dál Riata says:

    @Longshanker

    You’ve got a Blogroll on your ‘idiosyncratic’ blogsite. You list this site we’re on now as being called “Wings Over Mad-dog Cybernats”. Any reason for that?

    When you move a cursor over that site’s ‘name’ a text block appears which says, “Media indigestion peppered with political fervor and zealotry”. Any reason for that?

    You have the Bella Caledonia blog listed (with its correct name, surprisingly). When you place a cursor on that a text block appears which says, “Measured and varied Independence issues interspersed with pretentious blowhards”. Any reason for that?

    Why do you need to do so much abusive name-calling? Is that the only way you can express yourself?

    Another example of your abuse is calling Nicola Sturgeon “Deputy First Prostitute Auld Nick Sturgeon”.  
    There are ways to be ‘ironic’ and ‘satirical’- you ought to learn how as it doesn’t come naturally to you, unfortunately. 

    You don’t have any commenters on your blog, unsurprisingly. Though, I suppose you don’t care, as that is not your raison d’etre. I mention this as I don’t know how the owner of this blog can be bothered with your offensive trolling on his blog. However, as the blog owner commendably says, he doesn’t want to censor anyone’s views. (If you were to ever try to dirty a blog of mine with your abuse, you’d be put on the Comments Blacklist without a moment’s hesitation. Then, well, if you think you can hide behind a WordPress blog and not be ‘outed’ you’re mistaken. There are plenty of ways to ‘seek you out’ online …)

    Now answer the five questions you’ve been given on here.  Send them back to us, then go and do your homework and go to your bed. There’s school tomorrow!

  27. Captain Caveman says:

    Hang on, the guy’s been prodded, provoked, bullied and subjected to a near continuous general, low grade campaign of abuse, before finally being actively trolled and deliberately curtailed in this very thread, with the hilarious ‘let’s blank out his text’ gag, amusingly passed off as ‘an effort to ‘encourage less juvenile standards of discussion’…? Wow, way to go with the Double Standards; I can’t think of anything offhand that’s more juvenile.

    Incidentally, and for what, exactly? Referring to your hero and man-god Salmond as ‘The Sun King’? Oooh, your poor little tender sensibilities towards mainstream policians in public life, with broad shoulders! I’ve heard the author of this very blog wishing death itself – quite literally and in absolute, clarified terms – upon Messrs. Blair, Brown and Thatcher, not to mention referring to them in vastly more derogatory terms than ‘Sun King’, whatever the f**k that’s supposed to mean anyway? Oh, and I’d love to have seen his furious, self-righteous offence and response at the prospect of anyone else ‘hilariously’ blanking out or in any way tampering with his precious posts. Longshanker’s eventual response seems positively moderate by comparison? For me at least, the hypocrisy of it all is quite simply breathtaking.

    As I’ve said, honest debate is clearly not wanted here. Offhand, Longshanker and I are the only two people to shove our heads above the sorry parapet and look what’s transpired. As for taking the debate elsewhere, I understand from here that this blog has been blocked at source from multiple sites(?), so the answer to the question ‘as others see us’ seems only too apparent.

    I’m not tarring everyone with the same brush; Scott Minto seems to have a distinctly more collegiate approach and has interesting ideas that to me at least, are worthy of exploration and discussion. It’s just not going to happen though, as you’d have to be a masochist to try to prevail against the backdrop here, as has surely been clearly demonstrated.   

          

      

  28. Morag says:

    Caveman, if you and Longshanker could manage anything even vaguely resembling honest debate, without sneering, ham-fisted attempts at wit, and repeated accusations that your host is “morally repugnant”, you might get a better reception.
     
    If I went on a Labour blog to comment, I certainly wouldn’t refer to Johann as “The Lamentable One” in every post, or call my hosts insulting names.  I’d try to engage with the Labour posters in reasoned, polite terms.  I’d save the wisecracks for conversation with those who share my opinions.  Otherwise I’d expect to be banned.
     
    You could try the same approach and see how you get on.  If either of you are capable of civility or reasoned debate that is – so far it hasn’t been in evidence from your camp.

  29. Captain Caveman says:

    Oh please. That moral high ground you seek turned into a fetid, stinking swamp a good while back.

    As for me, I’m all for honest debate, whatever you try to claim, but there has demonstrably been none here, has there? Why is that do you suppose?  On a blog that has hundreds of thousands of monthly page-views, every single one agrees with you, do they? Whatever.

  30. Siôn Eurfyl Jones says:

    Who let the children in? 

  31. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    I’ve never been more convinced that Cavey and Longshanker are the same person.

  32. Dál Riata says:

    The behaviour of Captain Caveman/Longshanker is so typical of many of those who defend the Union in the present debate on Scotland’s hopes for independence:
     
    Come charging on to a forum, which is obviously pro-independence in its content, as someone who is anti-independence, or, in the guise of a ‘lapsed’ independence supporter …
     
    Post ever more insulting and offensive posts re the theme of the forum …
     
    Get called out by other posters and the blog owner for their misbehaviour …
     
    Result – Respond with the “honest debate is clearly not wanted here.” schtick. ‘See! See! Those rabid “Nats”…! This is what they’re like..! They won’t allow anyone from outside their clique to have a different opinion.. ‘ This, that and the next thing… Blah! Blah! Blah!.. ad nauseum.
     
    Classic victim-blaming reverse psychology. Abuser blames the recipient of the abuse. (Other classical abuser signs: irrational jealousy; threat of, or actual physical violence; minimizing and diminishing; criticizing; blaming.)
     
    It is terribly unfortunate for those who wish to maintain the Union and do have things to say which are worth listening to that they are continually being represented online by the impoliteness, sneering and, often downright lies that passes for discourse from their representatives. However, with that said, for one who is pro-independence like myself, I say long may it continue!
     
    Those with nothing to say and who are being ignored shout the loudest.

  33. Jimbo says:

    Perhaps Longshanker and Capt Caveman should go here .  Where their sage like words would be welcome amongst like minded souls

    https://www.facebook.com/BritishUnity 

  34. Captain Caveman says:

    “I’ve never been more convinced that Cavey and Longshanker are the same person.”

    You absolutely know – for an indisputable fact – that this isn’t the case. You know who I am, and have done for many years.

    But anyway, I was thinking last night that actually, I’d welcome the opportunity of curtailing all this crap and actually writing an essay as regards my own thoughts on the matter of Scots independence, even though by my own, ready admission, I confess I am ill-informed in this regard. I’m under no illusion that it’ll be shot down in flames, but there again, if nothing else, it would possibly give some of your readers here an insight into the lay-perspective of perhaps a fair number of ordinary English people on this subject.

    You know I am not a troll regardless, but you’d have my word that I would not abuse such an opportunity with deliberate trolling or somesuch. So c’mon Stu, what say you? Heck, you might even have an actual debate on your hands. :)

    Cavey         

      

  35. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “You absolutely know – for an indisputable fact – that this isn’t the case. You know who I am, and have done for many years.”

    Perhaps, but I have no idea who Longshanker is, and both pieces of knowledge are necessary to determine that you aren’t the same person. I can’t imagine I have many readers who buy kilos of silver.

    And of course, your much-broken pledge to refrain from posting here was qualified by “reserving the right” to respond to other people attacking you personally, yet here you are wading in when nobody but Longshanker was being addressed.

    However, despite everything, and in the spirit that everyone deserves a fortieth or fiftieth chance, feel free to submit an article. It will be judged on its merits, like all submissions, without prejudice. You, of all people, don’t get a blank cheque.

  36. Captain Caveman says:

    “And of course, your much-broken pledge to refrain from posting here was qualified by “reserving the right” to respond to other people attacking you personally, yet here you are wading in when nobody but Longshanker was being addressed.”

    It’s a fair point, of course. Genuinely however, I can’t stand to sit back and watch whilst someone is, to my mind at least, being bullied? We’ve had our disputes over the last decade, most certainly, but one thing I’ve always (immensely) respected you for is your moral code of ethics if you will. I absolutely genuinely feel that your emotions were/are getting the better of you here? But whatever, moving on etc.

    “However, despite everything, and in the spirit that everyone deserves a fortieth or fiftieth chance, feel free to submit an article. It will be judged on its merits, like all submissions, without prejudice. You, of all people, don’t get a blank cheque.”

    Thank you for that Stu, can’t say fairer than that. I, of all people, and most especially here, am not expecting “special treatment” or kid gloves. And as I’ve said, my expectation is that, despite my earnest efforts, such a piece will be flawed at best and lamentable at worst; my knowledge in this area is, by my own ready admission, seriously wanting, as I’ve already said. It won’t be a troll piece though, that I can personally guarantee.

    How did you want me to submit it?     

      

  37. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    You can use the contact form at the top of the page.

  38. Longshanker says:

    @RevStu

    “Just because you challenge me to provide something I never at any point claimed to possess doesn’t mean I have to do what you want, dear.”

    So you’ll retract the accusation which, by your own admission, is without foundation?

    Ghandi would be proud of how clever you’ve been.”
    He’d have been pissed off at how you spelled his name, though.    

    I had never heard of trolling till I visited your site – pretty ignorant eh? – but I now know that your reply is a standard trolling practice when you’re losing an argument. Well done, you expose your hypocrisy at just about every turn.

    I’ve never been more convinced that Cavey and Longshanker are the same person.
           

    You actually expose your total, utterly risible, disingenuous, hypocrisy with this statement. It’s the classic tactic of the low level fascist to demonise perceived enemies. I genuinely feel sorry for Scott Minto that he’s chosen to associate himself with such a misanthropic narcissistic solipsist. It’s only a matter of time before he finds you out.

    “Perhaps, but I have no idea who Longshanker is, and both pieces of knowledge are necessary to determine that you aren’t the same person.”
       
     So how do you know that all the posters here aren’t the same person? How do Captain Caveman and I know that all the posters aren’t, in fact, you?    I think we should be told

  39. Tonia Wight says:

    My goodness… this is like a lot of squabbling children! I’m all up for debate but this isn’t debate its pathetic. Please can we have interesting discussions about politics rather than name calling? You know you are loosing when you deteriorate into calling people by long-winded offensive adjectives and nouns.

  40. Tonia Wight says:

    Oh dear I just made the mistake of clicking on Longshanker’s blog. That’s not very nice stuff.

  41. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “So you’ll retract the accusation which, by your own admission, is without foundation?”

    I’m not sure a 13-word sentence has ever contained so many separate inaccuracies and untruths in all of human history. Well done!

  42. Longshanker says:

    @Dál Riata says:

    You’ve got a Blogroll on your ‘idiosyncratic’ blogsite. You list this site we’re on now as being called “Wings Over Mad-dog Cybernats”. Any reason for that?
    When you move a cursor over that site’s ‘name’ a text block appears which says, “Media indigestion peppered with political fervor and zealotry”. Any reason for that?

    Yes. It’s called fair comment based on opinion. Anyone who can use the headline:

    “The Scots are Cringing Pitiful Scum” 

    as RevStu did, on this very site or refer to being made feel like a ‘dog’ by Westminster political oppression (paraphrasing), or attempt to whip up anti-English sentiment based on an obviously satirical piece in the Telegraph is nothing other than a mad dog Cybernat zealot. And a hypocritical one at that. 

    RevStu also referred to Northern Irish voters who vote for Sinn Fein as “spectacularly retarded.” As far as I am concerned, that is out and out misanthropic hatred. If you choose to defend such a stance, that’s your outlook and problem.

    Personally, the headlines and arguments made in the piece must be over my head. The final conclusive statement by RevStu:

    The only plausible answer is that we’re all complete fucking morons.

    Only highlights my belief that he is a misanthropic narcissist. I voted in the 2010 election. I don’t think I’m a ‘complete fucking moron’.  I was disappointed with the outcome, but who wasn’t. We’re all paying the price now.
               

    Go on. Defend RevStu for being the victim of   “abusive name-calling” as stated by you.

    I don’t partake in abusive name calling. If I call anyone anything, then it’s always justified. That’s an important distinction between myself and RevStu who deigned to call me a “hate blinded idiot” because I consider the 1979 vote where the SNP voted with Thatcher as ‘treachery’.

    Disagreeing with that belief is fine. Calling someone a ‘hate blinded idiot’ because they believe it  is abuse. So don’t try and take the high ground with me when you’re standing on such precarious ground yourself.  

  43. Tonia Wight says:

    Erm… I’m sorry, but I just have to say something. Pot… kettle… black longshanker?
    “I don’t partake in abusive name calling. If I call anyone anything, then it’s always justified.”
    “misanthropic narcissistic solipsist.”
    “Sun King Alex”
    Just to pick on two cases of name calling that particularly stood out… so if you decide to call someone something its justified but for RevStu its not? Now I don’t agree with everything RevStu says, but it is bloody obvious to me that his pieces “Cringing Pitiful Scum” are satire… Like I said. Pot. Kettle.

    I would truly like decent political discussion but this NOT that. This is the worst form of discussion its like listening to children bullying each other.

  44. Longshanker says:


    @RevStu

    I’m not sure a 13-word sentence has ever contained so many separate inaccuracies and untruths in all of human history. Well done!

    Interesting sense of perspective you have there. 

    Yet, notably, still no retraction of a, so far, unjustified accusation made by you. Still looking like a hypocrite under your very own ‘ethical code’. You must be proud.

  45. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    I might add “fascist” to “Sun King” on the sanctions list.

    And the only thing I’m proud of is wasting the bare minimum of time on your absurd lies.

  46. Longshanker says:

    @Tonia Wight

      “I don’t partake in abusive name calling. If I call anyone anything, then it’s always justified.”
    “misanthropic narcissistic solipsist.”  “Sun King Alex”

    “Sun King Alex” is easy: ‘Watson’s Windup’ always refers to Alex Salmond as King Alex for humorous effect. The FM endorsed the first Sunday Sun which also ran with the date of the referendum. The cringeworthy eulogising and anointing of the FM by Nicola Sturgeon at the SNP party conference was reverential in tone. The historical Sun King was Louis XIV – he fought the Wars of Devolution – therefore it seems like an apt name to administer regarding the FM. A lot of followers have a blind faith in him which I genuinely find worrying and deal with through mockery. You can get all upset about it if you like, but at least it’s justified.

     “misanthropic narcissistic solipsist.”

    Again, you don’t have to agree with it or like it. But I mostly only post when I think RevStu oversteps the mark with his chip on the shooder assertions regarding Scotland being picked on where it isn’t. He plainly finds it difficult to make the distinction between the SNP, Alex Salmond and Scotland. Possibly understandable because he doesn’t live in Scotland and hasn’t done so for a while, apparently.

    Why you choose to call the piece by RevStu where the headline: “Everyone in Britain is a Moron” satirical, escapes me. Much like the Telegraph’s ‘Modest Proposal’ appeared to escape RevStu – though I’m more inclined to believe Captain Caveman’s argument there.

    One of my friends who is Pro-SNP and pro-independence told me he thought RevStu’s “Everyone in Britain is a Moron”  piece was tongue in cheek, and I took his reasons for that on board.

    But how you can justify this sentence: “… voting for someone who tells you in advance that they’re not even going to TRY to represent you is just spectacularly retarded.”  as satire, escapes me.
       
    The lack of perception, or historical perspective, whether willful or not, justifiies to me the assertion that RevStu is a   “misanthropic narcissistic solipsist.”.  I’m not saying it to be abusive, I’m saying it because I believe it to be the case.

    Someone with his obvious writing talent should do better than engage in low level stereotypical Nationalist diatribe. That he chooses not to, considering the number of readers he appears to be attracting, verges on the criminal. 

  47. Longshanker says:

    “And the only thing I’m proud of is wasting the bare minimum of time on your absurd lies.”

    Another accusation without justification. You excel yourself.   

  48. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    I’m quite obviously a misanthrope, as are all sane people in possession of a TV set. “Narcissistic solipsist” is so ridiculous as to be only explicable as trolling.

    As if to illustrate the point, I’m getting extremely weary of countless threads being derailed to become about your personal opinions of me, irrespective of the topic of the post in question. As you may have noticed, I’m not especially interested in getting bogged down in refuting groundless allegations and gratuitous abuse – I have a life to lead. In future if you persist in derailing threads with such attacks I may move them all to a post of their own, just to keep things tidy.

    In fact, here you go:

    http://wingsland.podgamer.com/discussions-of-rev-stus-personality/

    Feel free to post in it whenever you like. Comments there will show up the same as in any other thread.

  49. Dál Riata says:

    “Doctor, have you come to any conclusions about the symptoms being showed by this person who has named themselves Longshanker?”

    “Hhmm …  Well, he, or she, though most likely to be a male, could be suffering from APD (Antisocial Personality Disorder), or DWE (Disorder of Written Expression), or ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) or even ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder)…”

    “So … as yet inconclusive, then?”

    “Yes, I’m afraid so. It’s a difficult case.”

  50. Cuphook says:

    I’ve been reading Wings Over Scotland from it’s early days and I’ve never commented before, because I’ve never needed to, but now I have to speak out. Ban Longshanker for deliberate trolling. He adds nothing to debates and his pointless interjections seem to be nothing more than an attempt to disrupt discussion. It’s getting tiresome and affecting the quality of your blog. I’m all for disagreement but Longshanker is just disagreeable.

    I learnt to ignore his comments a long time ago as I assumed that his purpose was to publicise his own (crimes against humour) blog, but comment threads now seem to be taken up with responses to his logorrhea.

    Please ban him. I know, like me, that you’re not a fan of censorship so perhaps it could be classed as an intervention and, in return, if there is a charity which collects for people with his condition you could post a link and I would gladly give.

    He also makes me uncomfortable.

  51. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Please ban him.”

    As I’ve already said, further intentionally-disruptive and off-topic posts will be shifted to a separate thread in which they’re relevant. Hopefully the result will be that he cuts out the abuse and the playground bollocks and debates on the issues, but if he’d rather just rant away in his own wee corner about how I’m a fascist, that can be accommodated too.

  52. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    RevStu,
     
    You are too kind, far too kind.
     
     

  53. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Was there not another trolling blogger fro Aberdeen somewhere, who would post articulate but nonsensical posts non stop on the Herald and possibly the Scotsman.
     
    He disappeared and I just assumed he had been sectioned.
     
    Something tells me he is back in some Care in The Community project.

  54. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @Cuphook – Welcome to the debate. You have taken the first step by posting. It would be nice to see you join in more often.

  55. Tonia Wight says:

    Cuphook: here here. And welcome. I didn’t comment for ages but now I can’t help myself (although recently it has been because I’ve been so incensed by other people behaving badly)! So please do join in!

  56. Cuphook says:

    @Scott Minto (Aka) Sneekyboy
    @Tonia Wight
     
    I do comment occasionally elsewhere if I feel it’s necessary, but usually it’s not as there are a lot of people arguing the independence case online and, more often than not, winning – Scott’s Sneekyboy persona being one of the more articulate and better organised.
     
    I did try a new angle on political blogging a couple of years ago by trying to approach the subject in the manner of short story telling, but, unfortunately, I was only able to make two entries due to time constraints. It still haunts the net but I think only one person might have read it. Actually, I have no proof that she read it but she was my only follower.
     
    I’m happy to follow the development of issues raised by Revstu and Scott but Longshanker is spoiling my reading. I actually collect strange, funny or bizarre comments (everyone has a hobby) but Longshanker’s don’t even make the grade in that respect. He just spoils my day and makes me uneasy like finding a chicken in your boiled egg, or a priest smiling at you.

  57. Longshanker says:

    With the Corporation’s funding under attack from the coalition government (leading to a planned reduction in BBC Scotland’s budget to £86m by 2016/17), the potential loss of approximately £100m of net revenue every year from Scottish licence-fee payers should the country vote for independence is one it can ill afford.


    You realise of course that this was due to Jeremy Hunt doing his best to be Rupert Murdoch’s pal. Part of a sustained attack on the BBC which the Murdochs hate. It makes the previous argument you made on another thread about Murdoch’s business perogatives, ‘nothing to do with us’ look highly suspect given that it’s resulting in a loss of revenue.
     

  58. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “You realise of course that this was due to Jeremy Hunt doing his best to be Rupert Murdoch’s pal. Part of a sustained attack on the BBC which the Murdochs hate.”

    Yes, I do realise that. What’s your point, since your subsequent sentence makes little sense?

  59. Longshanker says:

     
    Seeing as Hunt is doing Murdoch’s bidding to undermine the BBC. And seeing as Salmond considers it perfectly above board to lobby Hunt on Murdoch’s behalf. Then by proxy Salmond is undermining the BBC for his own political gain – even if it is ‘exclusively’ for jobs and Scotland. So where does that leave his stance, if any, on BBC funding?



    Is it any wonder that the BBC is so readily willing to expose Salmond’s hypocrisy and telling silences (Doosan) when they know he’s such a willing proponent of corporate monopolsing and consolidation of power.
    Iain McWhirter was right when he said that Salmond had made a real error of judgement being this intimate with the Murdoch’s. He’s unforgivably antagonised the non-Murdoch media. That will cost Salmond more than it’s cost the BBC.

  60. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @Longshanker

    Backing a private company bid to take over another private entity does not undermine a State funded national broadcaster.

    I know you are aware that all broadcasting is “RESERVED” to Westminster so that they can prevent any outbreaks of positive news about the Scottish Government.

    Salmond had NO INFLUENCE on the bid other than saying the he thought it was a good idea.

    He tried to phone Hunt to let him know he though it was a good idea and Hunt wouldnt even pick up the phone. So much for having a voice in the Union!

    But lets not forget that at that time, the Milly Dowler revelations had not hit, BSkyB was undergoing reogranisation and 6000 jobs were at risk in some of the poorest areas in Scotland.

    Should the FM not fight to keep jobs, especially in a worse recession than the Great Depression?

    Now the result has been a new call centre of 900, an increase in the current centres capacities by 100 further jobs and the saving of the 6000 existing jobs. Not bad for only having to share an opinion with the Westminster politician in charge of any decision.

  61. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    As the article above explores, the BBC (and the rest of the Scottish media) is already pretty virulently anti-SNP (or more to the point, anti-independence). Salmond has played nicely with it for years, to no avail. Maybe this is his idea of fighting back – it’s certainly hard to see how the BBC could get any more hostile than it already is, so what does he have to lose?

    More likely, of course, is that the whole business is exactly what it appears to be – Salmond acting to preserve and attract Scottish jobs, which is what he’s there for, and happily accepting the support of the nation’s best-selling newspaper along the way, as so many other before him have done.

    Salmond’s enemies can exhaust themselves screaming about it if they like, but the more they go on about it the more I suspect the Scottish people will get sick of them, not him. To most people, there are about a thousand things they give more of a shit about than whether anyone listened to Calum Best’s answerphone or not, and they will tire rapidly of the opposition wanking on forever about Murdoch instead, if they haven’t already.

  62. Jimbo says:

    Out of interest I visited Longshanks website.  What a vile, vile collection of racist, sexist and vulgar content.  If it’s satire it is not satire as I define it.  Longshanker you are in a dark and vile place.

  63. Jimbo says:

    ‘opposition wanking on forever about Murdoch instead, if they haven’t already.’  Please Rev Stu that’s an image too far :)  

  64. Longshanker says:


    @Scott Minto

     Backing a private company bid to take over another private entity does not undermine a State funded national broadcaster.

    Not immediately, but it would have due to the nature of the ‘unprecedented’ deal.  So far, Murdoch cannot, even with a controlling stake of 39%, control editorial policy in Sky news in the manner he has with say the Times, the Sun or the News of the World. That’s why Sky news is relatively sound as news  broadcasting goes.

    Under the proposed deal which Salmond was prepared to lobby for, the funding for SKY news would have been controlled by NewsCorps which would arguably have  given  NewsCorps almost total control over output rather than the ten years of alleged independent operation.

    Full control of BSkyB would have allowed Murdoch to consolidate and synchronise attacks/influence on the BBC/incumbent government/competitors to the degree that his company’s interests could be further achieved with even less opposition than they had in the past.

    The unique danger of Murdoch – whom you accused me of sounding like a toady about remember – is that politicians paid court to him and accommodated his business interests in key areas.  Interests, some of which, were most definitely not in the public interest.

    First in the line of NewsCorps attacks would have been broadcasting ‘impartiality’ and a systematic corrosive attack on the BBC and licence fee as an anachronistic tax (which I do see the argument in incidentally).

    Some of James Murdoch’s whining in the McTaggart lectures does make sense. I’m no apologist for the BBC. And I genuinely believe it’s a jewel worth fighting for.

    Why Salmond would think that this was a good idea escapes me, just as it appears to have escaped the majority of non-Murdoch media types, and a sizable number of SNP types who, disappointingly, prefer to remain quiet about it.

      Not bad for only having to share an opinion with the Westminster politician in charge of any decision.

    The crux of the matter for Salmond apologists is that they HAVE to believe it was about jobs.

    I think the jobs explanation is in keeping with just about any snake oil politician with something to hide (does saying that get me redacted?).
    If it had been about jobs and jobs only – which is feasible without being credible – why was it not revealed to parliament that Salmond was prepared to lobby for Murdoch’s deal in the name of jobs?

    That it wasn’t speaks volumes. A true case of not what you say but what you don’t say that really tells the story.
      

    Unanswered questions include:
     
    Why did it take a previously undisclosed email to expose this deal if it was about jobs?
    Why did Salmond deny it at first before he finally admitted it?
    And why would he be willing to lobby for alleged extra jobs when, even now, he can’t come up with any numbers for the number of jobs which would allegedly have been created?  

    The fact that no one from the SNP could appear on Newsnight on 24th April told the casual observer all they need to know. Standard evasive government procedure when there’s something fishy to hide.

  65. Longshanker says:

    @Jimbo

    Longshanker you are in a dark and vile place.

    Alex Salmond was in here first. And he’s still here.  

  66. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Some of James Murdoch’s whining in the McTaggart lectures does make sense. I’m no apologist for the BBC. And I genuinely believe it’s a jewel worth fighting for. Why Salmond would think that this was a good idea escapes me”

    Despite all the times we’ve patiently explained it to you, including in the article above? Is there a set number of times we have to repeat it before you hear? The BBC is no friend of the SNP, and never will be. Murdoch is at least changeable.

    “Why did it take a previously undisclosed email to expose this deal if it was about jobs?”

    This one got trotted out for the Nth time on Newsnight tonight, and it doesn’t get any less stupid. Salmond didn’t publicise the fact that he was talking with Murdoch to save jobs because look what happens when people find out he’s been talking to Murdoch.

  67. douglas clark says:

    RevStu,
     
    It is pretty obvious that you sometimes see Longshanker as an issue for you.
    Have you considered this?
     

    This site sucks, you (and your dog) suck too. I’m going to go eat paper, bye!

    … into this!:

    Ths st scks, y (nd yr dg) sck t. ‘m gng t g t ppr by!

    Apparently it is known as disemvoweling.

  68. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    I’m happy with the measures currently in place to promote civility and maturity.

  69. Longshanker says:

    Despite all the times we’ve patiently explained it to you…
    The BBC is no friend of the SNP, and never will be. Murdoch is at least changeable.
     
    The BBC is no friend of anyone according to Mr Murdoch. And long may it continue. With friends like the Murdochs you don’t need enemies.
    How many times do you have to hear it to understand; BBC bias – of the type you maintain – is in the eye of the beholder. To argue otherways is to look as smart and progressive as King Canute and his innovative policies on wave and tidal power.
    Did the irony escape you that one of the complainers in the video embedded here was the Labour party? Are you saying that you’re on their side when it comes to the BBC?
    Incidentally, how’s the BBC monitoring getting on? Seems to have died a death. Any updates? Could lend credence to your argument.



    This one got trotted out for the Nth time on Newsnight tonight, and it doesn’t get any less stupid. Salmond didn’t publicise the fact that he was talking with Murdoch to save jobs because look what happens when people find out he’s been talking to Murdoch.
     
    So you’re implying that Hassan and McWhirter are stupid? Wow!

    Whether it gets trotted out or not, everyone but apologists are smart enough to see it for the underhanded evasion and contempt of parliament and the people of Scotland that it really was. Even members of the SNP are expressing similar sentiments in hushed tones lest they be considered to be dissenting.

    Oh! Word of advice (should it not get redacted) think about the ‘Nth time’ tone of dismissal used by you in your civil reply above; think about it every time you use the phrase “too wee, too poor, too stupid”.
    As I’m sure you’ll agree, repetition is sometimes the only way to get things through thick skulls. For everyone else it’s as tediously dull as listening to the harpies going on about anti-SNP BBC bias.
     
     

  70. Scott Minto (Aka Sneekyboy) says:

    @ Longshanker

    It would not matter what I, or anyone else for that matter, were to say to you regarding the SNP as you are too blinded by your hatred for the SNP and the Independence movement. What is it that makes you act like a jilted lover, irrational, confrontational and emotional. Slinging accusations and insults in every post?

    I have read your latest “article” on the SNP as a Cult based on living deity worship rather than a Political party and I have to say you come across as bitter and angry. There is nothing anyone could say that would break this delusional world you have built up around yourself. We all suffer from its aftereffects in the form of agressive and abusive posts. 

    Im afraid that your blog is nothing more than ATL Trolling (Above the Line), as can be seen from these excerpts:

    The group is focused on a living leader to whom members seem to display excessively zealous, unquestioning commitment.

    The group is preoccupied with bringing in new members – Membership of the SNP has grown by over 30,000 in the last few months. Due to reliance on other traits of the cult, this membership is steadily growing.

    The group is preoccupied with making money – Every cult needs money in order to ‘get the message out’. SNP donors include SNP cult members themselves, rich individuals with potentially sinister agendas and naive lottery winners.

    Mind-numbing techniques (such as meditation, chanting, speaking in tongues, denunciation sessions, debilitating work routines) are used to suppress doubts about the group and its leader. 

    Now this may have been good enough to illustrate my point but then you added this abusive diatribe:

    Take a look at the Wings over Scotland blog to see what happens to dissenting voices;  redaction of posts, censorship, mockery, group bullying, hypocrisy, obfuscation, name calling, ad hominems, sophistry, evasion, double standards, misanthropy, narcissism, solipsism, alleged moral code etc etc etc.

    Anyone with any sense of plurality or free thinking ability, should steer clear of the party and its drone supporters until some semblance of sanity returns post-referendum when the Sun King is much less likely to maintain his iron grip on his cult followers.

    This was of course in the same vein as your “Moan McVulpine – Scotchlands Intolerantly Foxy Xenophobe” article with accompanying photoshopped poster. As satire goes it wasnt very funny, just bitter, and I’m pretty sure Joan McAlpine wouldnt appreciate you calling her Foxy.

    You are not in a happy place and really need to reassess the world around you as if you continue in this manner you will end up as a lonely, bitter and angry man. Lighten up a bit, look at the possibilities life brings and work towards a goal of your own. You already took the first step with this addition at the bottom of your page. I salute your optimism:

    Like this: Like – Be the first to like this post.

    Now I have to go and talk in tongues with the 30,000 new SNP members while trying to fleece naive lottery winners for money!

    Slainte :D

  71. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “BBC bias – of the type you maintain – is in the eye of the beholder.”

    No, it isn’t. The feature is about an empirical, real vested financial interest of the BBC in Scotland remaining in the UK. The £100m of Scottish licence-payers’ money diverted out of Scotland every year is not a matter of opinion, it’s a matter of undisputed fact.

    “Incidentally, how’s the BBC monitoring getting on? Seems to have died a death.”

    I’m not aware of doing any “BBC monitoring”.

    “So you’re implying that Hassan and McWhirter are stupid?”

    I’m implying that on the subject of Murdoch these professional journalists not employed by Murdoch are blinded to reason by their extremely evident hatred of him, as demonstrated by Macwhirter’s extraordinary and uncharacteristic hysterical behaviour on Good Morning Scotland last week.

  72. Longshanker says:

    @RevStu

      The £100m of Scottish licence-payers’ money diverted out of Scotland every year is not a matter of opinion, it’s a matter of undisputed fact.

    Not denying that for a minute. And I agree with you that the money could be better spent and shared. However it doesn’t for a minute actually reinforce any deliberate bias against the SNP, because other than anecdotal opinion you’ve provided no real credible instances of bias against the SNP by the BBC. 

    I’m not aware of doing any “BBC monitoring”.

    My mistake. Apologies. I thought your call to twitter followers to report back on appearances by politicians on Radio Scotland etc was you indulging in a process of monitoring. Reliable figures based on doing so would however give your ‘bias’ claims more credence than relying on a budget shortfall and a short clip from Russia Today. If you can prove the claim based on empirical evidence you’ve got a case.

    During one of the American presidency run ins, Fox news was proven to have a ratio of around 65: 5 mentions/appearances of Republicans to Democrats. Fairly indisputable bias in anyone’s eyes.  I wish I could remember the site – I’d link to it for you (assuming it wasn’t redacted). I presume you would welcome a similar form of media plurality if it was in favour of the SNP.

    …demonstrated by Macwhirter’s extraordinary and uncharacteristic hysterical behaviour..

    Yeah, McWhirter was uncharacteristically hysterical. I think it was probably more down to him having a real appreciation of just how serious the First Minister being prepared to lobby for a corporate media monopoly really was. Like you, I agree that most people don’t give much of a s**t or appreciate how corrosively right wing such a monopolistic media business would be in action.  

            

  73. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “My mistake. Apologies. I thought your call to twitter followers to report back on appearances by politicians on Radio Scotland etc was you indulging in a process of monitoring.”

    It is. Just not exclusively of the BBC. The log records appearances on STV too, and anything else anyone sends in. I can’t sit listening to every radio channel and watching every TV channel all day every day. And the log is less aimed at detecting over-representation of any party or parties than chiefly at noting WHICH representatives of each party appear the most, as the summary articles clearly demonstrate.

    “I’d link to it for you (assuming it wasn’t redacted)”

    I’ve quite clearly stated that only links to YOUR blog are banned, as there’s already a link to it in your username. Link to anything else you like.

  74. Longshanker says:


    @Scott Minto  

    you are too blinded by your hatred for the SNP

    Take a look at the bannerhead. Top marks for mis-observation. What else are you incapable of understanding?

    Im afraid that your blog is nothing more than ATL Trolling (Above the Line), as can be seen from these excerpts:
      
     I’m afraid that this comment is nothing less than BC Trolling (Beneath Contempt) and is being treated as such.    

    I’m pretty sure Joan McAlpine wouldnt appreciate you calling her Foxy.  

    Who’s Joan McAlpine? I thought it was Moan McVulpine who was ‘Foxy’.

    Lighten up a bit, look at the possibilities life brings and work towards a goal of your own.   

    My God! You’re right. An epiphany! I have seen the light! Life now seems different and full of infinite possibilities! Thankyou!

    Thankyou for the patronisingly embarrassing attempt at saving me oh righteous one. Truly you belong to the SNP Blairite cult of the drones. Forgive me for failing to make the grade (thank god) of a’right-thinking’ Scot. I prefer to think for myself.  Though it does seem hypocritical to comment on AhDinnaeKen with such condescending piffle here rather than on the blog which you claim to have read. 

    Any reason for that other than gutlessness and safety of the ‘cult’ herd?  I think I should be told.
        

         
      

  75. Cameron says:

     
    I have been chuckling away to myself following this thread, not least given the leading article’s headline, “as others see us”. An article about perception and perspective.
     
    I am reasonably new to WOS, and do not have prior knowledge of the position or history of other posters. The only way I can come to my own “opinion” regarding any WOS article or discussion, is through “rational” analysis of the information presented. Hopefully this will allow me to come to a “reasoned” conclusion or judgment, based on my understanding of the empirical “facts” presented, if any, and my own real life experience. As such, my “opinion” remains just that, an opinion. There is no guarantee that my judgement will be “sound”, or that my rational conclusions will correspond to the rational conclusion of others.
     
    Although I tend not to support censorship under any circumstance, hate speech is hate speech, no matter who is expressing it. It should not be tolerated under any circumstances. Likewise the irrational dismissal of empirical “facts” that contradict a “view” being expressed. Maintaining dialectical rigor is essential if we hope to develop our intellectual understanding of the complex issues that are discussed hear. Name calling gets us no where, though it can be quite funny some times.
     
    I like the idea of a quarantine thread, but what about a “sin bin”, along with accompanying yellow and red card system?
     
     

  76. Keef says:

     
    “You take the highlight…”
     
    This particular thread helps to highlight a situation that seems endemic to pro-Independence blogs and websites.
     
    From the outset I will concede that I have no empirical evidence to justify my claims of this, it is based solely on my over arching feelings and observations from reading countless hours of articles/posts on these sites.
     
    To me it seems that most sites ‘content’ are driven by the need to repudiate the latest lies inaccuracy, smears and disingenuous comments/sound bites that are fed almost daily to the anti-Independence media by the ‘Better Together’ campaigners and the various Lords, MP’s and anyone else who has a vested interest in seeing Scotland’s bid for autonomy fail . These comments range from mere bias to the just plain stupid. However, regardless of the severity of the negative information, they are nonetheless ‘highlighted’ by the more observant of the pro-Independence fraternity and shown up for what they are worth.
     
    As a consequence, matters that deserved no further comment should have died on the lips of the speaker, or in that small timeframe of TV coverage – reached the bare minimum of the populace are instead further propagated. As the Nazi propagandist Goebbels said “if you repeat a lie often enough it becomes the truth”. Readers should note he said nothing about who should be repeating the lie. So there is a danger that in highlighting these absurdities the Yes campaign is promulgating the ideas and dis-information that the no campaign wish to disseminate. Furthermore, a vast amount of time and resources are wasted on researching these inaccuracies- time that would be better spent on promoting the positive benefits of an autonomous Scotland.
     
    Moreover, an autonomous Scotland will need to meet the aspirations of the people who voted for it. These aspirations and goals require someone to define them and in defining them – debate the merits of them. Who better than the people who populate these sites and what better time than now?  For us to spend precious time arguing with ‘trolls’ about “he said/she said” nonsense must be so counter-productive, not to mention demoralising. What’s more, it plays directly into their hands. I have to admire some of their tactics. They are, after all just doing their ‘bit’ for their respective campaigns. They understand their ‘National” newspapers have all but lost their mass appeal. So now have changed tack and began to print headlines and articles that blogs like these will pick up on and carry back to the Yes campaign (much like the Trojan horse). They must be tickled pink when they see the amount of times that posts on pro-Independence sites ‘link’ to some ‘outrageous’ article in their broadsheets. It means they get readers accessing their sites that would ordinarily never go there.
     
    Speaking of newspapers, I came across a curious fact just the other day. A startling fact that left me feeling cold, confused and slightly ashamed. For well over a year I have read posts by readers who are at their wits end with regards the ‘pulp’ that is being fed to the populace via the MSM and how they wished there was an ‘Independent’ newspaper to counter this. The feeling was almost palpable from some of the comments as they ‘beseeched’ someone to do something about it. Perhaps Alex Salmond has read these comments and taken note. For on the 3rd Jan. whilst leading a tribute to Jimmy Halliday the First Minister mentioned that Jimmy was (amongst other things) the chair of the longest Newspaper still in print in Scotland – namely the Scots Independent. After doing a little research I found that this paper is printed weekly and has been in publication since 1926. It is also online albeit in a very limited fashion. However, what I found most disturbing is that this paper is not widely publicised amongst the pro-Independence sites. There are no links to it, no ‘free’ advertising of it, in fact it seems to be left to ‘blow in the wind’ (pun intended).
     
    So where is the innovation in Scotland? Where are the mass of volunteers rushing to ramp this paper’s circulation up? Where are the movers and shakers who wish to see a pro-Independence broadsheet on the newsstands daily? Surely to God there must be at least a couple of good men and women who could ‘make’ this into a daily paper for the mass population to read. Please don’t tell me there is not enough will power to see this paper flourish and outsell the rest of the ‘crap’ that is being fed to the people of Scotland at present. This is an asset of such huge potential that it should be made a major priority. Seeing this paper on the newsstands will go a long way to galvanising the people of Scotland in the run in to next year’s Yes vote.
     
    Finally, readers who expect to read any sort of poll showing the Yes campaign in front in the MSM or BBC are verging on the delusional. The people behind these outlets can barely lie straight in bed never mind print the facts untouched. They will grudgingly show a slight increase in the Yes vote towards the middle of the year to engender a bit of credibility. But Folks – that’s as good as it gets with this shower.
     

  77. G H Graham says:

    I regret that this will be my last visit to this site.

    The language, tone & name calling in some of the the posts as well as the responses no longer add sufficient value, interest or enjoyment. Good luck nevertheless.

    For the record, I’ll be voting YES next year and while I hope that we will overcome the challenges to succeed in returning our country to full, sovereign independence it is a concern that it may not happen because of the type of debates taking place here. It’s unattractive & disengaging and that we cannot afford. 

       

     

  78. Keef says:

    Why leave then? If you have regrets would it not be better to air your concerns as you just did and encourage a more positive debate?

    Most of the ‘rubbish’ deposited here is a deliberate act by trolls to do exactly what you are considering in doing – namely cease meaningful participation.

    In the words of the Great Mahatma “be the change you want to see in this world”. By articulating your concerns you help raise the standards of debate. By leaving the site and saying nothing you simply disenfranchise yourself.  



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