The Scottish media this week has worked itself into an apoplectic rage over Alex Salmond acting (or rather, merely being prepared to act) in defence of thousands of Scottish jobs. It’s been an odd phenomenon to witness, but doubly so given that last week everyone was furious with him over some jobs that were lost.
Despite the fact that unemployment in Scotland (at 8.1%) is again lower than in the UK (8.3%), the situation remains extremely fragile and any government could expect severe criticism if it failed to do everything in its power to protect and create jobs. Yet Alex Salmond appears, on the evidence of the last few days, to be damned by the Scottish media if he does and damned if he doesn’t.
The taxpayer-funded BBC has a far more powerful influence in Scotland than News International, and is frequently portrayed by nationalists as the Union’s propaganda vehicle of choice. The allegations can sometimes be difficult to dispute however objective one would wish to be, and the BBC’s coverage of the Doosan furore last week was an instructive case.