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Last night in Madland

Posted on August 23, 2013 by

We were struck by a curious vision when watching Thursday’s edition of Scotland Tonight. The show bizarrely chose to focus its attention on the manufactured outrage about Elliot Bulmer’s article for the Herald, with the alleged serious criminal offence which led to the “revelation” reduced to a minor incidental footnote.

ronadougall

And we found ourselves wondering what would have happened if the producers had gotten their scripts mixed up, and treated the other big news story of the day – the conviction of MSP Bill Walker for a string of domestic assaults on family members between 1967 and 1995 – the way it handled the Yes Scotland hacking story.

We think it might have gone a bit like this.

RONA DOUGALL: So, you’re one of Bill Walker’s ex-wives. I gather that he violently assaulted you on a number of occasions?

FORMER MRS WALKER: Yes. But as he hasn’t been sentenced, it’s still an ongoing criminal matter and I can’t go into too many details.

RD: I see. So did you deserve it?

FMW: Sorry, what?

RD: Were you asking for it? I mean, were you annoying? Did you nag him a lot? Was the house a mess? Did you not have his dinner ready when he could have reasonably expected it?

FMW: I beg your pardon? I don’t think – 

RD: Look, it’s fair for a man to get his dinner on the table after a hard day at work, surely? Don’t you think he had a right to expect that?

FMW: That’s ridiculous! This is the 21st century, and – 

RD: Look, just answer the question! People need to eat, don’t they? Did you want him to starve to death?

FMW: With respect, I hardly think that’s the issue at – 

RD: DO PEOPLE NEED TO EAT FOOD OR DON’T THEY?

FMW: Well, I suppose so, but it’s really not the – 

RD: Good, so you’ve admitted that you should have had his dinner ready. Now, some people on the internet, who normally oppose domestic violence, have been saying that in this particular case you pretty much asked for it. So if even they’re speaking out against you, it must be at least understandable that you got beaten up a bit?

FMW: I really don’t think this is the important aspect of – 

RD: Will you ever fail to have a man’s dinner on the table again in future? I mean, do you WANT to get violently assaulted? Is that it?

FMW: No, of course, I don’t. But I – 

RD: Good, so I’m glad you’ve conceded that you were guilty of provocation and that you’ll make sure this sort of thing won’t be happening again. Now we’ve got some guests coming on to discuss whether you needed a bit of a slap to knock some sense into you. Back to the studio.

We wish we were exaggerating. But Blair Jenkins, whose organisation appears to have been subjected to a serious crime which raises extremely worrying concerns about both democracy and the conduct of the press, was without a shadow of dispute treated on last night’s programme as the guilty party.

The show led with, and spent the vast bulk of its time on, not the alleged crime but a perfectly legal and transparent transaction between Yes Scotland and the Herald. The paper knew perfectly well that it was running an article commissioned and supplied by Yes Scotland, but chose – entirely legitimately – not to inform its readers of the fact. If anyone ought to be questioned on the subject, it’s the Herald.

Blair Jenkins was harangued and interrupted so relentlessly by Dougall that he was forced onto the defensive, and a sensible point he perhaps naively attempted to make, about not putting any future authors through a similar media witch-hunt, was turned into an admission of guilt.

(Jenkins was able to actually make the point properly a few minutes later on the BBC’s Newsnight Scotland, whose Raymond Buchanan gave Ms Dougall an object lesson in their professional art when he actually allowed people – during the whole show, not just his interview with Blair Jenkins – to answer his questions without constantly butting in after three words. But by that time the damage was done, social media alive with Unionists seizing on Jenkins’ apparent concession of wrongdoing.)

Victim-blaming isn’t pretty whenever it happens. But sadly, it seems to be an increasingly common feature of the Scottish media’s coverage of the Yes campaign. Last night’s Scotland Tonight was a disgrace to broadcasting. The independence debate is rapidly descending into insanity.

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    307 to “Last night in Madland”

    1. heraldnomore says:

      When is it we get FMQs back?
       
      The silly season has just been far too long.

    2. Cath says:

      Ooh Rev, you’ll have the unionists quoting chunks of that as proof of your misogyny you know 😉

    3. Sneddon says:

      Don’t forget the homophobia  as well Cath 🙂

    4. john king says:

      In my veiw Blair Jenkins showed he was not up to the job as he was bullied and harangued into a tacit admission of guilt, it was almost like the  stories we hear of people being coerced into admitting guilt where there is none just to stop the constant pressure from the interrogators 

    5. Craig says:

      I just got back to Aberdeen last night to visit the family and this just happened to be the first thing I saw on the telly. So frustrating to watch I was nearly shouting at the TV. I hope your average punter can see through the terrible interviewing and are not sucked in by it…

    6. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “In my veiw Blair Jenkins showed he was not up to the job as he was bullied and harangued into a tacit admission of guilt”

      He was doing fine until then. But he should have been smart enough to realise that the way Dougall was steamrollering him he had no chance of getting across the legitimate point he was trying to make, and abandoned it.

    7. Keef says:

      Stu you’re very kind and perhaps a tad naïve when you say “the independence debate is rapidly descending into insanity”

      Benefit of the doubt and all that, but this point was reached a few weeks ago with the bizarre claim of Westminster contemplating ‘partitioning Faslane”. Since then the MSM and the anti-sanity coalition has descended into utter farce.

    8. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Ooh Rev, you’ll have the unionists quoting chunks of that as proof of your misogyny you know ;-)”

      Aye, I know. Someone already said something on Twitter (in fairness, a warning akin to yours rather than a complaint). My view is that anyone prepared to deliberately misinterpret that wholly legitimate use of analogy, whichever side they’re on, is the sort of idiot I need as far away from my brainspace as possible, so if it weeds out a few thickos then all well and good.

    9. heraldnomore says:

      I see the Herald have published something about their side of things.  But I can’t read it, ain’t linking to it, and am certainly not registering.  I can but assume it to be the truth.  No doubt someone will put me right, if required.

    10. Kendomacaroonbar says:

      …and so the establishment delivers a severed horses head arse on Yes Scotlands bed…

    11. Sneddon says:

      John King- I think Blair did ok when it dawned on him that speaking to that reporter was like explaining electricity to a cat.  No matter what he said the reporter was going with the programme editiorial.  One reason the Revs’ analogy in the article was quite good  it showed basically the abject wreck of a reporter on a mission from the mothership.(this information was not obtained illegally) 🙂

    12. Kendomacaroonbar says:

      should have been a strike through on the word ‘head’..:-(

    13. bunter says:

      Sorry O/T The Herald I think is breaking ranks and published an article on Dr Bulmers and clarifies some facts and suggests the furore is a distraction. What do you think.

    14. Rod Mac says:

      The bottom line in all this is that The British State using its allies in BT or an outside ,or internal organisation is stealing Scotland’s democracy.
      This hacking  is a crime and is simil.ar in nature to Watergate.
      The fall out from Watergate eventually ended in Nixon being forced to resign .
      Others went to jail , however Nixon still won the election and after he was disgraced and forced to resign another Republican president took over.
      I have to say if i feel I am cheated out of my democracy i will not quietly go away and wait till the next plebiscite.
      The corrupt British state never learns, history is littered with the blood of Westminster’s opposition to democracy and Self determination.
      I implore hte Scottish government today to beg the EU to send in observers .
      We can no longer allow the corrupt and illegal British MSM and Government to ride roughshod over Scotland’s democracy.
      No more Mr Nice guy Mr Salmond, take off the gloves and let us fight back against these vile criminals.

    15. Doug Daniel says:

      The Herald article says they undertake to show whenever an article was offered by a political organisation. I’m assuming they mean “from this point onwards”, because they didn’t say anything on the original article about it being from Yes Scotland.
       
      But hey, let’s blame Blair Jenkins for not having control over what the Herald writes instead.

    16. Keef says:

      When one has to turn to the English podcasts from Russian TV for a balanced opinion on Independence, something is seriously wrong in the ‘democratic’ state of Britain.

    17. Gordon Bain says:

      For what it’s worth I’m with Rod Mac 100%

    18. Alistair Sheehy Hutton says:

      It’s pretty simple.  As your own survey shows newspaper journalists are despised.  Someone who writes and article for money for a newspaper is clearly a journalist. Ergo, all this hoopla.

    19. Brotyboy says:

      @heraldnomore
      No need to register.  Using Google Chrome, I simply ‘clear browsing data’ from the customise menu top right (3 horizontal bars) and then ‘tools’ and have another 3 free articles.  I don’t pay them a penny.

    20. molly says:

      No John King, if it is a choice between listening to and having someone like Blair Jenkins represent Yes or a Johann Lamont /Ian Davidson type I know who I prefer.
      If Blair Jenkins suddenly turned into a rottweiler with the journalists, he would still not be allowed to get his message across and basically if we sell our souls to the cabal that call themselves the Scottish media we become Better Together Campaign mark 2. 
      Maybe BJ ,should have just said “you’ll need to ask the Herald”, but then again ,he’s in the position of  needing their services so he can’t afford to alienate them either but imagine if there had been someone on the programme who works for the Herald-oh wait ,there was in fact 2 people and Rona still did not ask their opinion.

    21. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “should have been a strike through on the word ‘head’..:-(“

      THERE CLEARLY IS. ARE YOU MAD?

    22. HandandShrimp says:

      It is par for the course, ridiculous look a squirrel faux outrage, incredible amount of mileage in the press reported as fact, slow release of actual facts showing the original story is not in fact true/correcly explained/understood, very quiet correction so no one can say it wasn’t corrected, public left with false impression. No trolls plague articles and message boards still touting the original squirrel story and refusing to believe there was “smoke without a fire”.
       
      Pretty much classic propaganda techniques. We just have to roll our sleeves up, correct the trolls and have the corrections to hand so that we can undermine their nonsense. It is hard work and tedious at times but the message does start to get through that these people are liars and that the press is totally unreliable. Thank god for the internet because it is used far more than television news and newspapers and one can counter there crap immediately. It is why so many of is are banned from Better Together. However, there are a lot more indy sites than No sites and they have a lot more variety and traffic than the No sites too.  

    23. Webcraft says:

       “My view is that anyone prepared to deliberately misinterpret that wholly legitimate use of analogy, whichever side they’re on, is the sort of idiot I need as far away from my brainspace as possible, so if it weeds out a few thickos then all well and good”
       
      Rev, I loved the irony and thought it made the point cleverly and clearly. However, I predict that twisted idiots will selectively quote chunks of it regularly for the thirteen months – often in places with a very much  less sophisticated audience than the Wings crowd. If they are prepared to selectively quote off the cuff and very obvious  irony from a gaming blog comment thread six years ago then this is a glaringly obvious ‘copy and keep’ snippet for their arsenal.
      One lesson we can surely all take from this debacle is that anything we say is likely be twisted and manipulated beyond all recognition. Best IMO to avoid providing any obvious ammunition, galling though that might be. 

    24. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I see the Herald have published something about their side of things. But I can’t read it, ain’t linking to it, and am certainly not registering. I can but assume it to be the truth. No doubt someone will put me right, if required.”

      Come on folks, keep up. We’ve given you the solution to this problem. Help us out.

      http://archive.is/BFESr

    25. Dcanmore says:

      If anything it was probably a wake up call for Blair Jenkins and how he sees the media in Scotland and his relationship with it. I’m sure the whole point of the exercise is to try and bully a non-politician (ie a soft target) into resigning from YES Scotland. Of course it remains a distraction from the actual serious crime of phone hacking and the lack of media attention to this.

      It is insanity, the MSM is not even trying to be coherent about the referendum anymore. I said this yesterday, we are now in a war where the other side’s battle will be to maintain the Union at all costs even if it means slash and burning any notion we have of democracy, freedom of speech and journalistic integrity, those will be the casualties. The spoiling tactics are to encourage apathy, indifference and a low turnout. Why are they doing this? Because the unionists in the media and Better Together are afraid. Why are they afraid? Because they know, at this time, they are losing.
       
      The only time desperation kicks in any situation, is because the desperate see themselves in a losing situation that needs to be changed quickly. The self belief that Better Together are far ahead in the polls and heading for a comfortable win is an illusion that is not working any more.

    26. Kendomacaroonbar says:

      Oi Stu,
      Don’t do a Rona on me… 🙁  it wasn’t displaying as struck through on my screen nor the edit box when I attempted to remedy the problem.   I’m off in the huff now
       

    27. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “However, I predict that twisted idiots will selectively quote chunks of it regularly for the thirteen months”

      Thing is, as I’ve said before, there’s basically no way to stop people misquoting you out of context. If you try hard enough, you can pull something out of ANYTHING someone says. There really isn’t any way of stopping it, so there’s no point worrying about it. If people are stupid and lazy, they’ll believe whatever anyone says about you even if it’s totally made up. If they’re not, they’ll check it out for themselves and see that you’ve been misrepresented, and that’ll backfire on the would-be smearer.

    28. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I’m off in the huff now”

      Blimey, Kendo, you’ve had 71 comments approved, surely you’ve been here long enough by now to recognise the CAPITAL LETTERS CORRECTION JOKE when you see it? 😀

    29. Lanarkist says:

      Sadly I managed to catch BBC News at ten’s Scottish News Section, STV’s Scotland Tonight and Newsnight. It struck me that a cartel culture has been embedded, shockingly similar in content and approach to subject focus, although I have to agree with you on levels of professionalism portrayed on STV. Same faces and statements appearing to reinforce the desired deflection. I can’ t help feeling that someone from the Herald should have been present to answer some questions, mainly, why they hadn’t properly accredited the source of the story.
      Change.org now have a petition asking for European observers to be asked to monitor Media coverage regards Indy Ref.
      Also noticed that company advising Better Together’s online campaign advisors based in USA as URL  will attest. The campaign is now officially internationally orchestrated. Funny, former rebellious colony with many Scots involved in founding principles now assisting in preventing Scotland from even discussing and disseminating possibly useful information to the debate.
      Lanarkist.
       
       

    30. Bobby McKail says:

      I didn’t see Scotland Tonight, but I did watch Newsnicht and Blair in this one sentence ‘I accept that people will form their own judgements of the events of the last few days’ in my opinion they certainly will. The surreal and twisted way it the incident has been presented, with the hacking apparently demoted to ‘nothing happening here, move along file’ and the underhand way in which a certain blogger jumped on the bandwagon to condemn Yes Scotland is truly staggering. One would think she’s been promised a peerage with her Labour like tactics of deceit and her evidently increasing desire to reach celebrity status. The one thing that no-one seems to be connecting is the 2 other ‘leaked’ papers handed to the bbc from better together along with this latest ‘incident’, maybe the Police in their investigations will do just that.

    31. Macart says:

      Blair is the right man for the job. He’s honest, articulate and smart, but just like everyone else is prone to getting ambushed. He’s only human.
       
      This episode of the past couple of days has proven one thing above all else media wise. Its weeded out those titles willing to step on democracy big time. This has not been the media’s finest hour and will only enhance people’s perception of their corruption. All in all its worked out quite well. Its a bloody disgrace though that messrs Jenkins and Bulmer  had to be dragged through this to make the point. The media at almost any level is not to be trusted on this of all issues. They’re going to have to work a bit to earn that, they certainly don’t deserve it right now.

    32. Mosstrooper says:

      Kendomacaroonbar,
      don’t rush, take a minute and a huff ( with thanks to Groucho Marx)

    33. Training Day says:

      The MSM beginning for real its co-ordinated assault on the campaign for self-determination seems to have woken a few on our side from their complacency.  There are no Queensbury rules here, we will not be given a fair hearing, we will be subjected to vicious lies and propagandist smears, and to look for sops of comfort on a Sunday in the form of the Herald is the definition of futility (witness the behaviour – again – of its political editor on Twitter).  The less said about Scotland Tonight the better.
       
      These are scorched earth tactics by No Scotland and the MSM.  If the union is maintained then the rest of us can go hang.  This is about Scottish independence, yes, but it’s also about resisting the encroachment of a corporate fascism with the mainstream media as its cheerleader.

    34. heraldnomore says:

      Thanks Stu.  It’s an interesting statement from The Herald.  Now let’s wait and see who hacked what from where.

    35. Paula Rose says:

      Am I right in thinking that the Yes campaign asked an expert to write an article for potential publication, he agreed and asked for a small fee to cover his time etc, the article was published and now some people are saying that the payment was wrong? This is silly.

    36. Webcraft says:

      <I>If people are stupid and lazy, they’ll believe whatever anyone says about you even if it’s totally made up. If they’re not, they’ll check it out for themselves and see that you’ve been misrepresented, and that’ll backfire on the would-be smearer.</I>
      OK, point taken. Can we afford to write off the stupid vote AND the lazy vote though?
       

    37. HandandShrimp says:

      Trust must be earned and it’s vital it is not undermined or squandered by needless distractions from the real issues. The row over Yes Scotland’s modest payment to Dr Bulmer is an unfortunate but timely reminder of that.
       
      As the summary to the Herald article I would read that as a call for McDougall to get a grip. The Herald is also clear that they knew that Yes Scotland supplied the piece from Dr Bulmer, in which case why would it matter if Yes Scotland paid a modest fee. Is McDougall really suggesting intellectual integrity comes at the price of £100? His may very well, but I doubt he will find many academics are quite so wanton.

    38. Cath says:

      I don’t pay them a penny.
       
      I used to feel bad about that but now I know they expect their content for free from writers, fuck em.

    39. Geoff Huijer says:

      I’m afraid I don’t buy the ‘better watch what we say coz they’ll twist it’ theory.
      Point is, they will twist it no matter what it is.
      This has been proven over and over in the last year.
       
      If we start minding our Ps and Qs because we’re afraid it will be twisted
      we will be doing exactly what No Scotland want.
       
      They want to and are suppressing free speech.
       
      The wife beating analogy sums the current situation up perfectly;
      no doubt it wil be ‘twisted’ and quoted out of context but any other
      article or analogy would be too.

    40. Chic McGregor says:

      Just the Rev’s dry sense of humour Kendo.

    41. David Halliday says:

      Last night’s programme was not its finest but I thought that that was largely the result of the choice of guest (leaving aside entirely Kate Higgins’ actual contribution): Blair Jenkins and three Yes supporters (again, accepting Kate Higgins’ self-description at face value) left the presenter maybe over-compensating.
      To be fair too, they did lead with the hacking. Generally, I think Scotland Tonight has been the proverbial breath of fresh air and you wonder how much worse Newsnight Scotland’s standards would be would be if it didn’t have a competitor. From what I know, both the SNP and Yes Scotland are generally happy with the reception they get from Scotland Tonight. Maybe that general feeling explains the particular disappointment at last night’s programme.

    42. HandandShrimp says:

      Webcraft
       
      The lazy vote isn’t a worry they never qute manage to make it to the polling booth…the voters who have difficulty understanding the issues are more of a worry.

    43. Murray McCallum says:

      I saw Blair McDougall’s defence of his [transparent] publications on a news website.  His name appears as a link which then goes to show the biased platform he is coming from – should readers actually click on it.
      Based on my experience of visiting sites using different browsers I wonder if such links work for all browsers.  His “defence” of the link giving his details may not be universally watertight. Kendomacaroonbar‘s  “strike through” experience reminded me of that.
      I also hope someone can explain what that latest Herald View piece actually says!

    44. mealer says:

      I agree that the media portrayal of the debate is descending to exactly where NO SCOTLAND want it to be.
      But the real debate will take place on the doorstep,in the workplace,in the pubs and clubs,in the streets,in the butchers,on top of mountains.Face to face.And that debate is about how much we are wasting on Trident,how much better life can be for ordinary folk if we spread the wealth a bit more evenly,how prosperous Scotland can be if we have the guts to move forward like other similar countries do.
      As our recent poll showed,the fear and smear campaign is wearing a bit thin with folk.Theres only two ways we can vote.YES or NO.And only one of these offers hope of a brighter future.

    45. john king says:

      For a period of, oh I dont know, about 15 minutes when Blair Jenkins was anointed head of the YES  campaign, I saw an opportunity in the person of Mr Jenkins for a mature and adult debate in the period up to the referendum,
      when he was interviewed for the first time by the BBC he came across as a real gentleman (which I’m sure all yes or no campaigners would agree with,
      he made it clear (at least from the YES campaigns perspective) there would be no, biting, kicking, punching below the belt, hair pulling, no bevvying ahem)
      can anyone here think of a single day when the Better Together campaign have not employed all of these obscene trick (and many more besides)  
      is it really possible to behave like gentlemen and not get our white suits dirty, I personally feel like I’ll never be clean again no matter how many showers I take, 
      I think its time to take the jackets off and get into the mud with these people,
       there is no persuading this crowd that this can be done in a adult and courteous fashion, these people are fighting to the death and saying, oh I say old chap that’s a bit stiff dontcha think is not going to moderate their behavior while they are gripping the testicles (figuratively speaking) of the YES campaign and pulling enthusiastically, 
      If, (as they are fully aware is the case), they will not be held to account by the media, they, because of the YES campaigns self imposed restriction to behave in a manner which will reflect well on them in the months and years to come, feel quite able to take as filthy tactics as they wish because we are not landing any body blows in return (that wouldnt be cricket) 
        We need to take this to the next level (which is tragic) because this will only get worse and while the the blows themselves are just light taps the cumulative effect (in as far as the public is concerned) is a points win for the bad guys. 
      I remember when I was a kid watching wrestling on the telly on a Saturday afternoon and yelling for the good guys but every time they looked like they were getting the better of the bay guys their tag partner would jump into the ring and bite the good guys ear or something, and the end result was they got their ass handed to them on a plate, 
      Lets be clear about this, this is an existential struggle, if it takes getting down and dirty ,then its time we did it before its too late, 
      the very future of our country depends on this and having a footnote in history to remember us as very nice people just wont wash with future generations who will ask 
      didn’t they believe enough to fight for us?

    46. Webcraft says:

      OK, I’m convinced. You are right, the Ukoks are engaged in attempting to supress free speech.
      Consider my earlier comments made in a moment of weakness, a ‘Higgins’ moment if you will. I stand (or actually sit) corrected.
      We will still need a percentage of the ‘lazy and stupid’ vote though. (Whoops – bet that last  sentence gets quoted out of context)

    47. Chic McGregor says:

      @Webcraft
      Good point.  Current rate of exchange, 1 vote of the intelligent and self-informed = 1 vote of the lazy and stupid.
       
       

    48. Murray McCallum says:

      When is a link not a link on a website?  Is it always crystal clear – underlined, different colour, different text.  Is it always clear to the reader regardless of how they are accessing the information?
       
      Blair McDougall needs to start clearly stating his position on the face of all his web articles.

    49. Kendomacaroonbar says:

      Stu,
      I was just having a jolly jape too ! 🙂  but I find text messaging doesn’t capture the nuances of the tone or tenor without the smiley thingee….  ach I know what I mean…  For the record I’m off the huff now. smiley thingee

    50. Sneddon says:

      Webcraft-   It will drive you insane trying to account for other people’s understanding of events and issues and you’ll end up a puddle on the floor to be honest if you try to second guess them.  The facts are on our side and that’s what will win through.  Most people aren’t ‘stupid’ or ‘lazy’ when the poo hits the fan.  People with agendas often pretend to be stupid.  The truth will win out.  Nil desperatum  (apologies to my latin teacher)

    51. Erchie says:

      Re the Rev and quoting him

      “Qu’on me donne six lignes écrites de la main du plus honnête homme, j’y trouverai de quoi le faire pendre”
      If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him


      Attributed to the Cardinal Richelieu
       

    52. HandandShrimp says:

      Murray
       
      The Herald is saying they knew the article came from Yes Scotland but they thought it was a good piece that helped informed the debate. They didn’t pay for it nor could they know that a modest fee had been paid for the article. They note No Scotland has gone totally overboard despite the fact the information may well have been obtained illegally and more may well come of that later. All this highlights that there are serious issues in this debate and it would be a shame to waste one’s credibility making a fuss about a trivial one. (But they have anyway)
       
      All in, a fair comment and as someone said, rather takes one of the table legs away from the Better Together argument that there was any dishonesty regarding the source of the document. In short McDougall is playing the blusterhorn (again).

    53. les wilson says:

      Having watched “STV” becoming more vindictive and more and openly bias than normal over the last few days in particular, and the false furor of the MSM across the board I no longer (if I really ever did ) consider the station has any  relevance to a truthful coverage of the Independence debate.
      So I now consider them another of the “Unionist ” conspiracy against any thought of Scottish Independence. They as others should hang their head in shame.
      Therefore let us consider “Scottish Television ” as what they undoubtedly are ” NBTV” – North British Television ”
      You would think that there is a point at which the will descend no further but I fear they have further to fall, as decency has no part of their agenda,which is Westminster driven, thinking people must see that.

    54. Tony Little says:

      @John
       
      I sympathise, but as the saying goes, when you wrestle with a pig, you both get dirty, but the pig enjoys it.
       
      I think that’s EXACTLY why the No-better mob have been baiting the YES side, throwing out wild “accused …” headlines, ramping up nothing into something to bring us down to their level.  It’s the “Look, we’re all SO BAD you can’t trust us to run a country.  Vote No to be ‘safe’ with Westminster.  After all they’ve been doing this for us for over 300 years”
       
      We don’t need to get covered in pig sh*t, we don’t need to be more aggressive, but we can be more assertive.  IMHO Blair is TOO much the gentleman, and a rather more self-assertive approach would be an improvement.  Be CONFIDENT Blair, you know you are in the right, say so and stick with it.  Don’t answer distracting questions, keep to your line and keep repeating it.  
       
      I find it bizarre I am even typing this, wasn’t Blair head of politics at the BBC in Scotland.  This SHOULD be bread and butter stuff to him.

    55. john king says:

      that point in time I alluded to in my previous post is emblazoned on my memory for ever more, when BJ  was asked (to my mind) in a very pointed and menacing manner if he thought that the BBC was biased, over the next several minutes BJ seemed to avoid a direct answer but the (interrogator) would not let him away with it until he gave a clear answer,the unspked threat seemed to me to be he had better gicve the right answer or his life wont be worth living, when BJ said no he did not think the BBC  was biased, my heart sank because at that moment I know he didnt have what it takes to tackle these people, at that point in time I think his time at the BBC  was still too fresh in his memory and the feeling was blood is thicker than water, I believe he was telling the truth (as he saw it) in much the same way as a person suffering from Stockholm syndrome believes in their captors propaganda

    56. MajorBloodnok says:

      @Paula Rose
       
      Yes.
       
      What is illuminating is the attempt by BT to try to sustain the preconception that no-one in their right mind would freely support independence (we’re all suposed to be Braveheart nutters, right?  Well, personally, I’ve never seen Braveheart); and therefore if someone does appear to support independence in such a way as to make it appear normal, humane and rational, then the ‘obvious’ explanation is that they have been bribed to do so.  Works best on the hard of thinking.

    57. Murray McCallum says:

      You are a very reasonable and balanced person Mr HandandShrimp
      Would have been good though to see the Herald View words in a clearly separate paragraph and maybe in bold text:
       
      Details of the payment emerged from allegedly hacked private Yes Scotland emails. The organisation has contacted the police and the complaint is the subject of a criminal investigation.
       
      When it comes to blatant illegal activity, views have to be strong and clear.

    58. Cath says:

      “Can we afford to write off the stupid vote AND the lazy vote though?”
       
      The problem with relying on the stupid and lazy vote is that, powerful though the media are, this will be won or lost at grassroots levels. On streets, in pubs, in communities, in workplaces. The lazy won’t get off their arses to do anything so are useless to a boots on the ground campaign, and they’ll only ever parrot what they hear in the press so won’t be much use making the argument either. And they might not even bother voting.
       
      The stupid might be very active, but then they’re…well…stupid. In many ways they can do more damage to a campaign than help, they don’t understand the arguments, and they likely only know one side. So as soon as they come up against anyone who isn’t so stupid, they’re stumped and have only bluster or anger. Or even better realise they’ve been taken for an idiot and switch sides.
       
      In treating everyone like idiots and assuming the referendum can be won just by going for the lazy and stupid vote, BT will end up with only idiots in their campaign. Led by very intelligent people, obviously, but people who are politicians and journalists, and who are lying to those following them and treating them like idiots. That won’t make for a good grassroots campaign. Which is why they’re so desperate to close down any and every avenue for debate and for Yes campaigners to get their message out.
       
      I actually feel quite sorry for people who are intelligent and genuinely pro-union in a positive way. They’re being let down as badly as the rest of us by their own campaign and they  must be becoming increasingly frustrated as well.

    59. les wilson says:

      Tried  to make a complaint to STV over this but their “feedback” link at the bottom of their “Referendum ” page is disabled. However the whole of the debate in question is still available for repeat……
      There must be flack over this, and as usual with ALL of the “Unionist” media , they refuse comments. Democracy in Scotland is dead folks. We need to adapt to this and see it for what it really is, shameful!

    60. Cath says:

      That said, those who are intelligent and genuinely pro-union also must surely be starting to feel at least a bit conflicted, because the NO campaign is doing an extremely good job at destroying any last lingering sense there’s anything positive about the union. If they’re decent, they should be starting to ask themselves why they’re on the side they are, and whether they really want to be.

    61. MajorBloodnok says:

      I noticed this from the Herald comment:
       
      For our part The Herald undertakes to show clearly when an article has been offered by any political campaign group. We trust other newspapers and broadcasters will do the same.
       
      If only.

    62. Rod Mac says:

      Let me ask you all this question , does anyone honestly believe The British  would  have agreed to power sharing in Northern Ireland without the violence?
      would they have invited Martin MacGuiness and Gerry Adams to the White House  if they had made all their moves through the ballot box?
      Indeed would the USA be an Independent state today if they had not brought out the gun?
      Perhaps someone can tell us of the 50 odd now independent nations in the world that are e London controlled ,how many did not  need the resort to violence to rid themselves of corrupt Westminster?
      While MacGuinness and Adams have been lauded at White house ,how many democratic non violent SNP people have had such treatment?
      I am fed up with BBC , STV , MSM and the distortion of the Independence Movement.
      My patience and democratic nature are being pushed to the limit.

    63. David Halliday says:

      “Down and dirty”? Who would you rather have leading a campaign to persuade the public to come over to your cause: McDougall or Jenkins? Remember the results of the poll. Who is the least believed? 
      Looks to me like some people just have had it in for Blair from day one. I think his obvious lack of political side when being interviewed is an asset as regards the public.
      “Down and dirty” will feel good at the time and maybe spike the guns of the likes of Euan McColm and Kate Higgins but it isn’t what will win. Appearing sane and decent will help.

    64. Big Jock says:

      Like I said we need to get an international and neutral body in to oversee the Scottish Media. This can’t be allowed to continue. What comes out of the criminal investigation might actually be a wake up call depending on who the guilty party is.

    65. theycan'tbeserious says:

      Yet another storm in a tea cup. The people of Scotland will see through this smoke and mirrors. The police will investigate, make arrests and those guilty will do time. This will send shockwaves through the MSM in Scotland. The truth will out and the truth will set us free!

    66. Linda's Back says:

      Blair Jenkins and Dr Elliot Bulmer come across as very honest straightforward decent individuals who should be not subjected to the smears and bully boy tactics of the NO campaign and Unionist supporting journalists,
      Of course their views and actions should be scrutinised but they should be treated with common decency.  
      I have never seen anyone of the NO Scotland side being treated in such a fashion by anyone in the YES campaign or by any journalist or reporter.

    67. MajorBloodnok says:

      @Rod Mac
      Dinnae fash yersel an keep the heid (to translate something into the vernacular).

    68. Chic McGregor says:

      “I actually feel quite sorry for people who are intelligent and genuinely pro-union in a positive way. They’re being let down as badly as the rest of us by their own campaign and they  must be becoming increasingly frustrated as well.”
       
      And they live too far apart to share a taxi.

    69. NorthBrit says:

      @Cath
      Re pro-union.  Where I started but gave up long ago.  No-one with any self respect could align themselves with the ghastly people and repulsive behaviour of the “Better Together” side.  

      I think the problem for most of us is the Britain we believed in was the “spirit of ’45” version, not the current US satellite.

    70. john king says:

      “and the underhand way in which a certain blogger jumped on the bandwagon to condemn Yes Scotland is truly staggering.”

      gain yersel Bobby, thats how its done, deprive the clowns of oxygen

    71. john king says:

      “and so the establishment delivers a severed horses head arse on Yes Scotlands bed…”

      I seem to remember using a similar analogy over a year ago when I suggested you would’nt get another horses ass in Alan Cocrane’s bad as there would’nt be enough room for two of them

    72. Sneddon says:

      Major – this message got sent to me ‘accidently’  I think it’s for you.
      ‘Dinnae fash yersel an keep the heid’ 
       GCHQ here.   We’d  would rather you didn’t speak scotchlandish, stick to the queens english old boy, there’s a good chap
      thank you muchly
       
      Agent Higgins

    73. Thomas William Dunlop says:

      Never underestimate the intelligence of the Scottish voter. They will see right through this charade and decide unionism is wrotten to the core.
       
      Anyway the hacking issue will run for longer- the police are investigating at the moment, not much to say. However one only needs to keep in mind how long Watergate took to unfold to remind us that this is a long term game we are playing

    74. Chic McGregor says:

      I’ve defended STV in the past, or at least pointed out they were not as Pravda-esque as the BBC, however, things have obviously changed – they have been got at.
       
      Makes it a simpler task.   The only media defender of democracy left in Scotland are the on-line outlets.  Those will of course, come under all out attack.  Vilification, smearing, abuse of the judicial system, intimidation, denial of service attacks, complaints to web site providers, legislation to control it and anything else they can think of.
       
      We must all do whatever we can to ensure that the electorate are made as aware of their existence as possible.

    75. les wilson says:

      Lanarkist
      I  agree with what you posted,  I have long said this is a no holds barred CONSPIRACY, against a free Scotland.  We have a right to stop being used and abused, it is our democratic right, we need strong resolve.
      There is a similarity with Quebec here, when the people went for their referendum they were subject the abuse and misinformation, it went on, and on.
      However,there came a point where people took no heed of all this stuff,  being Royally fed up with the negativity,they just let it go over their head and paid no more attention to it.
      This lead to a very close vote,they were defeated by 1%. The point is though, it was not their opponents that defeated them.
      So what did?, they made the very big mistake of only directing their vote gathering attention to the section of society that they thought would vote for them. So they excluded potential votes by not paying attention nor even trying to get the disenchanted voters from a cross party basis.
      Scotland has learned from this, hence our campaign is aimed successfully at all peoples in Scotland, no matter what party they belong to.
      So as the negativity piles up from the “Unionist” side, more disenchanted cross party voters will have enough of  all this rubbish,and  swap camps, if only for the referendum.
      What we need to do is keep the positive message and continue to convert at every level. This I am convinced, is our hope of winning.

    76. Chic McGregor says:

      “They will see right through this charade and decide unionism is wrotten to the core.”
      I’ll correct that typo for  you 🙂
      “They will see right through this charade and decide unionism is written by the press core.”

    77. heraldnomore says:

      Any sightings of You-Know-Who yet?

    78. john king says:

      “McDougall is playing the blusterhorn (again).”
      ha ha ha ha ha like it, 
      apparently he is an aficionado on it as well, 
      wonder of he can give us the flight of the bumblebee on it?
        

    79. Cath says:

      “No-one with any self respect could align themselves with the ghastly people and repulsive behaviour of the “Better Together” side. “
       
      No, and increasingly I hope anyone with any shred of decency and intelligence will see this. Hence Better Together will be left with dross. That might already be happening and would explain the increasing desperation.

    80. Tony Little says:

      @theycan’tbeserious
       
      The police will investigate, make arrests and those guilty will do time. 
       
      Sorry, completely disagree.  There WILL be an investigation, but due to the “complexity of the situation, and the difficulty in working across a number of different jurisdictions, we [Scottish Police] can only confirm that attempts at illegal access to YES Scotland computers took place from location(s) outwith Scotland. We have been unable to identify the person or persons guilty of this ‘hacking’ attack.”  Dated 14th August 2014

       
      Do not expect the police to do anything of note.  That way you won’t be disappointed.

    81. Kendomacaroonbar says:

      Re BT’s vocal onslaught….The reveal scene in the Wizard of Oz comes to mind.

    82. Albalha says:

      @TonyLittle
      Re Blair Jenkins and media savvy. Not only was he head of News and Current Affairs at BBC Scotland but he also did a stint at STV as their Director of Broadcasting.

    83. john king says:

      major bloodknock says
      I’ve never seen Braveheart); ”
      well that’s a couple of hours of your life you still have, be grateful

    84. Tony Little says:

      @Albalha
       
      I thought it was something like that.  He couldn’t be doing it on purpose, could he!! [Oh no, slipped into conspiracy mode – Morag will hang me!]

    85. Caroline Corfield says:

      The moral high ground is too good a strategic advantage to simply abandon. The shield wall surrounding the principles of our argument should hold fast and not break ranks, running down the hill to engage with an enemy apparently on the run. Get yourself a copy of The Art of War, read and absorb it. History is littered with battles that should have been won that weren’t because of bad strategy. Both physical and political. 

    86. Tony Little says:

      @john
       
      Oh, come on, Braveheart is a good film.  Just treat it as a medieval action film and ignore all the historical inaccuracies.  Good fun!

    87. muttley79 says:

      @Rod Mac

      Do you really think your last post is helpful?

    88. HandandShrimp says:

      I have had a look at Severin’s piece in the Herald. Did sopomeone say it was the tird draft? It is still misleading. The final statement
      In a statement the Herald’s owners, the Herald & Times Group, said: “We were offered an article for our opinion pages by a constitutional expert, which we accepted in good faith as a valid contribution to the referendum debate.
      “We declined a request for payment and the author’s background was made clear to our readers.”
       
      makes it sound like it was Dr Bulmer that offered the piece when the Herald has confrmed that it was Yes Scotland that offered the article. Of course you could argue that Severin doesn’t actually say who offered the piece and it is just poor writing…but is Severin really so inarticulate? I don’t think so.

    89. Tony Little says:

      Caroline, including 1066 [and all that!] 😉

    90. john king says:

      “The problem with relying on the stupid and lazy vote is that, powerful though the media are, this will be won or lost at grassroots levels. On streets, in pubs, in communities, in workplaces. The lazy won’t get off their arses to do anything so are useless to a boots on the ground campaign, and they’ll only ever parrot what they hear in the press so won’t be much use making the argument either. And they might not even bother voting.”
      The problem with that assertion is the the stupid are not so stupid as to see they have been stupid, 
      have you ever spoken to John McIntyre OBE wan kinobe?
      I unfortunately have and it was not an experience I would care to repeat 
      his brainless bluster beggars believe
      say that five times fast 🙂 

    91. Albalha says:

      @TonyLittle
      I watched both TV interviews last night and was willing him to repeat the Herald knew all about it again and again. As has been pointed out Raymond B was the better interviewer but I suppose being a media manager does not necessarily prepare you for appearing in front of the cameras.
      Like many folk he may not find it easy, it isn’t but let’s hope if and when the hacking details are revealed there will be a loud, robust series of interviews from YES Scotland.

    92. john king says:

      “My patience and democratic nature are being pushed to the limit.”

      Well if a very big spotlight wasnt shining on this site before rod
      it sure as hell is now, 
      way to go banana heels 

    93. Albalha says:

      @HandandShrimp
      Guessing you mean the Guardian? The first article vanished and a new one with some changes now in its place. He then wrote another update overnight, so technically three articles, two are there, if that makes sense.
       

    94. Murray McCallum says:

      Sorry O/T but I see flipper Darling has changed his mind over HS2 despite being Chancellor when HS2 first approved in principle.  He should have known his stuff as he was a Transport Secretary.  He should have ensured due diligence around costings and business case from the get go.
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-23808993
      Is he after a Shadow Minister job?  Do you get more pay for that?

    95. john king says:

      linda’sback says
      “Blair Jenkins and Dr Elliot Bulmer come across as very honest straightforward decent individuals who should be not subjected to the smears and bully boy tactics of the NO campaign and Unionist supporting journalists,”
      no they’ll just portray them as Tim nice but dim characters 
      time we dug our heels in and said NO MORE

    96. Lanarkist says:

      When I originally started dipping my toe into the world of on-line forums, BTL comments, public contributions I was pleasantly surprised by how polite, patient, temperate, congenial and helpful pro-independence contributors were often under extreme provocation. After all I had heard/ read about “frothing” cybernats I found that it was completely the opposite camp that mostly indulged in these contributions. I think that BJ presenting himself as an honourable individual is a selling point to voters in Scotland and will help to engage more undecided voters than the tactics employed by those arguing against Independence. Their tactics have changed now that they realise that no one likes the taste of their poison. The individual members employed by the media are in a difficult position, vis a vis, voice disapproval at current tactics employed by organisation employing them-instant dismissal/ demotion or follow instructions and face isolation and long term unemployment further down the line.
      Time for some discussion on what will constitute news and media in a new future landscape once the slash and burn tactic has been extinguished by the very vacuum it has created.

    97. Cath says:

      “have you ever spoken to John McIntyre OBE wan kinobe?”
       
      He’s responded to a post of mine just this morning as it happens 😀

    98. john king says:

      Not so much the film I dislike Tony. 
      its the stupid assertions that we only exist due its existence,
      it makes me so angry that I want to paint my face blue and take my long johns off,
       and it gets draughty in the trossachs 😉

    99. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “My patience and democratic nature are being pushed to the limit.”

      Your point about Ireland is essentially valid, Rod, but you’re really not doing us any favours with that last line. Let’s NOT be going around implying that we might start blowing up pubs or kneecapping folk if we don’t get a fairer deal from the media, eh?

    100. john king says:

      “He’s responded to a post of mine just this morning as it happens” 
      And your still smiling? you have my undying admiration Cath 🙂

    101. Rod Mac says:

       
      Caroline Corfield says:
      23 August, 2013 at 12:09 pm

      The moral high ground is too good a strategic advantage to simply abandon. The shield wall surrounding the principles of our argument should hold fast and not break ranks, running down the hill to engage with an enemy apparently on the run. Get yourself a copy of The Art of War, read and absorb it. History is littered with battles that should have been won that weren’t because of bad strategy. Both physical and politics
      ==========================================================
      indeed if in 1745 Bonnie Prince Charlie had not bottled it at Derby  he would have taken the throne back and who knows what might have happened.
      Faint heart never won fair lady.
      time to remove the gloves is now upon us.

    102. Rod Mac says:

       
      muttley79 says:
      23 August, 2013 at 12:09 pm

      @Rod Mac
      Do you really think your last post is helpful?
      Yes ,next question

    103. beachthistle says:

      I think that the message that this story is a spurious one that should not get the media attention it is getting is exactly the narrative that the No campaign want to give to the wider public, and in particular to everybody in academia, political parties, think tanks, etc. Up until now all of us at WoS have been the No campaign’s unwitting accomplices.

      Can you imagine that if the No campaign has, as is being reported, access to a substantial amount of Yes’ emails that the £100 payment is, on the face of it, the most damaging item/story? No, neither do I. But we have to take into account the mindset and m.o. of the journalist at the centre of  this, and of the LFI witch-hunt…

      Bear in mind that the main thing that BT are clinging onto, with a year to go, is the notion that it is the minority of voters who are minded to vote Yes. Without that perception, their entire ‘Project Fear’ strategy quickly loses its potency – they need a critical mass of Yes-incllned people feeling that they are the ‘other’, and then on the back of that to feed into any lack of self confidence and comfort-to-be-‘different’ that a large number of Scots have (ironically these insecure feelings being by-products of being the junior partner in the Union).

      The No campaign must, at any costs, using any tactic, keep up the pretence/perception that it is ‘normal’/default to be ‘No’. So given that this isn’t true, and the number of Yesses are growing, the No campaign has to both suppress the data that shows that, and stifle the processes by/through which people will gain confidence as well as information.

      A way to do the latter is to let academics, professional experts and Labour and Tory politicians know that if they go public with their Yes views they will be open-season media-wise – and the key point is that the MSM will run with these stories, will pillory those who stick their head above the parapet for Yes, whether they deserve it or not! I.e the MSM is in the pocket of No and will run with non-stories like the £100 payment squirrel and the doctored LFI photos and you will get publicly shat upon.

      It is, in my view, primarily  a “pour encourager les autres” dirty-trick propaganda tactic – and we have fallen for it, are sustaining it, and helping to make it effective, as much as the MSM…

    104. Lanarkist says:

      We are really all engaged in something quite new and unique in as much as we are trying to break out of the corporate mould when they thought we were well and truly locked in. We cannot be allowed to figure out an escape route then advertise directions. I think the fight wili intensify and the tactics employed will be far dirtier. I don’t think it is just BT that we are taking on here. Safety harnesses on, engage brain.
      Lanarkist.

    105. Morag says:

      I thought it was something like that.  He couldn’t be doing it on purpose, could he!! [Oh no, slipped into conspiracy mode – Morag will hang me!]
       
      No I really won’t.  I’ve silently wondered ever since I heard of his appointment.  I’d never heard of him before, but the background rang all sorts of subliminal alarm bells.  This is probably baseless concern, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to be aware of the possibility.
       
      I get a bit impatient with people banging on about ridiculous conspiracy theories that have been well and truly debunked to death.  That doesn’t mean there has never been an actual conspiracy.

    106. Albalha says:

      @beachthistle
      I’m not getting the ‘accomplices’ reference, do you mean by talking about this story it helps NO? I think re academics and others, after this carry on, they may well be more inclined to speak out given the level of faux outrage this non story has generated.
       

    107. Brian Powell says:

      Would any journalists who may be here like to enlighten us on the process in the meeting discussing what is to be the tone of an article, or in the newsroom to make a TV item.
      The BBC etc and most newspapers rushed to concoct a negative story, would there be discussions on the ethics for example, or who would decide the acceptability of the tone?
      It was so consistently negative and the same focus, who would be influencing the direction for so many media sources?

    108. heraldnomore says:

      Gardham on the Big Debate right now.  I think I’ll go back to the cricket.

    109. muttley79 says:

      @Rod Mac

      Do you really think your last post is helpful?

      ‘Yes,next question.’

      I am really not sure what you are trying to prove here? Your last few comments are not good at all for the aims we are attempting to achieve, which is the gaining of a democratic, peaceful Yes vote in the referendum. You are playing into our opponents’ hands with your rhetoric.

    110. Rod Mac says:

      ev. Stuart Campbell says:
      23 August, 2013 at 12:26 pm

      “My patience and democratic nature are being pushed to the limit.”
      Your point about Ireland is essentially valid, Rod, but you’re really not doing us any favours with that last line. Let’s NOT be going around implying that we might start blowing up pubs or kneecapping folk if we don’t get a fairer deal from the media, eh?
      ===================================================
      Wow Rev, a little bit Scottish MSM  there I think if we check what I said there was no mention of kneecapping  or blowing up pubs.
      However I will say this Alex Salmond has suggested EU ,monarchy , currency union , NATO membership ,business as usual all to appease the public and not scare the horses.
      Well that does not seem to be working so far.
      On sites like this and others everyone is “don’t say anything whatsoever  that could be construed as controversial in case we upset the Better Together Mob who might use it against us.
      Let them say and do anything they want we will take the moral high ground,whatever you do ,do not fight back, and keep at 33-34% saying YES.
      When I was a kid my old man told me there was only one way to stop a bully ,and that was to boot him right in the family jewels and smack him on the nose.
      It worked ,nobody ever bullied you again after that.
      I will leave turning the other cheek to the bible bashers and the tree hugging ,sandal wearing liberal  beardies.
      I have had enough of keeping my powder dry and my tongue in my cheek.
      Last night was the final straw for me ,time to metaphorically smack this lot in the nose.
      I repeat i am not advocating violence .
      What I do advocate is after last night’s debacle on STV  to get your ITV fix on another channel.
      We cannot stop the BBC getting licence money ,but we sure can affect STV viewing numbers,and thereby their advertising money.
      That is the kind of the punch on the nose I am talking about .
       

    111. Albalha says:

      @BrianPowell
      I’ll give you the example of R4’s World At One. The meeting would be led by the output Editor of that day sitting in a room of all staff whether working directly on the programme or not. The day Editor would lay out the stories they were thinking of covering and then discussions would take place. Queries raised, angles agreed, interviewees suggested. Of course issues of balance, fairness etc would be integral to these discussions.

      After the meeting the core production team would get on with putting the programme together, and in the case of World At One the three best stories, in the days of a half hour programme, would make it, often it could start with 6 or 7 options. 

    112. Murray McCallum says:

      CameronB
      Awesome Washington Post squirrel-speak article. Can’t wait to try it out.

    113. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Wow Rev, a little bit Scottish MSM there I think if we check what I said there was no mention of kneecapping or blowing up pubs.”

      That’s what the word “implying” means, Rod.

    114. beachthistle says:

      @Albalha

      I’m not getting the ‘accomplices’ reference, do you mean by talking about this story it helps NO? I think re academics and others, after this carry on, they may well be more inclined to speak out given the level of faux outrage this non story has generated.

      My point is that while some academics, experts, etc. may react to this story with a ‘positive, I’m going to take them on’ attitude, I reckon that there will be others who will think, ‘bloody hell, that could be me, and it happened, the media ran with it, despite there being no basis for it’. – which is the reaction the No campaign will be hoping for, in my view the main reason they have done it (i.e. deliberately selected a weak story, to impress on others how much they control the MSM agenda) – and I doubt that the academics and experts are the main targets of this defacto intimidation strategy: the ones the No campaign are most worried about, and who have probably been given the most food-for-thought by this,  are Yes-inclined Labour politicians.

    115. Training Day says:

      @Albalha
       
      “Of course issues of balance, fairness etc would be integral to these discussions.”
       
      I knew there was a bit the ‘Scottish’ broadcast media had missed.

    116. Tony Little says:

      Morag, on a more serious note.  [I have removed my tin hat] there still seems to be an “Alice in Wonderland” feeling about the campaigns so far.  
       
      The totally negative approach by NO can’t just be because they have a US political manipulator who thinks the same tactics for a US Presidential election will work on an Independence referendum in the UK?  
       
      The opinion polls that show little move up or down (within statistical variance) despite the “Union jamboree” last year, and all the faux-outrages in the last few months.
       
      Every time the NO vote looks more promising the Westminster government announces something absurdly bad for Scots etc. etc.
       
      I really am beginning to believe that there are behind the scenes manoeuvres going on.  
       
      I enjoy reading a good conspiracy story, to be honest.  Sometime they DO make me think about the context in other situations.  I will not link this to Lockerbie per se, but there are so many features of the campaigns that i am sure I am missing because I am too close to the situation (virtually – as I am living 3000 kilometres away).
       
      Maybe time to take a reflective step back?

    117. Albalha says:

      @BrianPowell
      Should have added in broadcasting a lot of the direction is taken from the day’s newspapers, and/or in the case of the World At One developing points made on the Today programme.
      There’s no doubt the UK media feeds off itself, they all have access to the same news wires which dictate as well. Of course, invariably, they make similar choices about which news wires to ignore, you can compare coverage in other nations, say the Middle East. Choice is vital and that comes down to what an individual Editor or Editorial team deems is ‘newsworthy’.
       

    118. HeatherMcLean says:

      “Change.org now have a petition asking for European observers to be asked to monitor Media coverage regards Indy Ref.”
      Can someone please post a link to this as I want to sign it!
      Thanks!

    119. scottish_skier says:

      Rev: Thing is, as I’ve said before, there’s basically no way to stop people misquoting you out of context…. people are stupid and lazy…

      That kind of attitude isn’t going to win people over to Yes now is it.

      (completely agree on smears backfiring).
       

    120. Richard McHarg says:

      Calm everyone!
       
      This campaign has a long way to run yet. Clan MacCannae will run out of steam and will get more and more hysterical as a consequence.
       
      We keep going with the current level of grass-roots campaigning, ramping it up as we get nearer the referendum.  Most people don’t watch these programmes or read the papers, but they do go shopping and they do live in their houses.  These are the places where we engage with them.
       
      Personally, I do think it sensible that Blair Jenkins is the face of Yes Scotland.  He isn’t a politician, and he’ll get better. When it comes to the serious debates next year, the people will start to tune in, as the political big hitters are rolled out to give the MacCannaes a good political thrashing.

    121. Cath says:

      “Can you imagine that if the No campaign has, as is being reported, access to a substantial amount of Yes’ emails that the £100 payment is, on the face of it, the most damaging item/story?”
       
      I suspect what could be far more damaging is that Yes have probably been building up a fairly large list of people who are pro-yes but have so far been keeping quiet about it, so that they can be used as and when required.
       
      This whole thing now demonstrates several things to anyone who is pro-yes: one is that while the press might give some space to pro-yes views as a fig leaf to cover their bias, they won’t pay for these pieces. If Yes pay, your reputation will be dragged through the mud; if Yes don’t pay your reputation will be dragged through the mud as you’ll be accused of doing things for them for free. Essentially, you’ll have to accept your reputation will be dragged through the mud.
       
      Plus they’ll know who those people are and be able to approach them with far better offers, threats, possibly put halts on careers, drag skeletons out of closets etc, etc.
       
      I honestly don’t think there’s anything they won’t stoop to, and there is a tipping point of professional and “leaders” opinion they’ll want to stop happening too.
       
      Whether that will have a stifling effect, as they hope, or whether it’ll encourage people to be more vocal, it’s hard to tell. I certainly hope the latter. I can’t see intelligent people wanting to allow a situation where dirty tricks and smear campaigns silence people from giving their honest opinions on a huge democratic decision.
       

    122. Bubbles says:

      I’ve just listened to Brian Taylor’s Big Debate (someone has to) and yet again what should have been a relatively balanced panel was skewed in favour of the No brigade by a woman from Women for Independence! What gives?

    123. Ghengis says:

      The Scottish Government: Approach the OSCE and request an election monitoring mission.
       
      The link: https://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/the-scottish-government-approach-the-osce-and-request-an-election-monitoring-mission

    124. Nkosi says:

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/scottish-politics/10260796/Charity-regulator-urged-to-investigate-Yes-Scotland-payment-to-academic.html 
       
      Seem snake in the grass Crumb is pushing the Britnat agenda, unfortunately the little scum bag brooks no comment on his articles and it seems holier than thou Mcdougall wants the charities commission to investigate Yes Scotland for paying the good Doctor

    125. Morag says:

      Tony, you’re talking about Scottish Skier’s little theory that the No campaign are being deliberately sabotaged from Westminster?  I’m a wee bit sceptical about that, probably because I see it as wish-fulfilment fantasy to some extent.  I hope he’s right but I’m not banking on it.
       
      If Lockerbie tells us anything, or tells me anything I suppose, it is that it doesn’t necessarily require a conspiracy for something to be completely FUBARed.  People are quite capable of accomplishing that on their own, even when their basic intentions are unimpeachable.
       
      Blair Jenkins?  I haven’t made up my mind yet.  It would be one hell of a wheeze to get an undercover unionist in such a high position in the Yes campaign.  I expect that at some point in the next year he’ll do something so damned impressive that I’ll castigate myself for ever having had any doubts.  But until then I reserve the right to keep a small window of “I wonder” in the back of my mind.

    126. ScottyC1314 says:

      Rev, any chance you can move Scotland Tonight into Zany Comedy Relief after last nights showing. Dont think they have earned pride of place in the Scottish Politics section do you?

    127. Neil MacGillivray says:

      The No campaign will stop at nothing to maintain the UK intact with the oil and renewables keeping the economy afloat . But above all they need to keep Trident and that is why all manner of dirty tricks will be employed to prevent a YES vote. I fear there is worse to come aided and abetted by MSM and other more sinister interest.

    128. MajorBloodnok says:

      @Bubbles
       
      Was it Kate who?

    129. Bill C says:

      @Bubbles – Who was the woman? Was it Jeane Freeman by any chance?

    130. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Rev, any chance you can move Scotland Tonight into Zany Comedy Relief after last nights showing. Dont think they have earned pride of place in the Scottish Politics section do you?”

      Funnily enough I was pondering their continued inclusion only this morning. Might be a vacancy coming up.

    131. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      Bill: Yes, it was Jeane Freeman.

    132. Albalha says:

      @TrainingDay
      Yes I can see why you think that! I’ll repeat my unpopular views, however. Undoubtedly there’s an overall establishment bias at BBC Scotland, with Reporting Scotland imo the worst offender. (My personal view is that TV news is inferior by a long way to Radio news). There are pockets of decent programming on BBC Radio Scotland. But in addition to the inherent bias there really is a dearth of experience and people in the teams putting together the programmes.
      I’d reckon the Today programme has 3/4 times the staffing of GMS, with many more senior posts as part of their overall team. (Naughtie is in for a shock).
      So instead of beefing up the day to day teams they’re spending a shed load of money on a special referendum team made up of rookies on short term contracts, words fail.
      I mean if we take the perception of Raymond Buchanan he’s gone from inside Unionist mole cos he has an in law who is a prominent NO man to being a good and fair interviewer.
      I simply don’t think you should judge people on their relatives.
      However the case of the current Head of News and Current Affairs, John Boothman, is quite a different case and he should not be in that role, imo.
       

    133. Murray McCallum says:

      Charities Commission urged to investigate.  Yet another non story.
      Yes Scotland would have to have breached its own articles of association. It is ridiculous to think that paying a recognised and qualified academic £100 to write an article relevant to its cause would be a breach.

    134. Tony Little says:

      @Albalha
       
      there really is a dearth of experience and people in the teams putting together the programmes
       
      And on the referendum its about to get worse with the employment of 15 ‘graduates’ who know nothing about anything.  The most critical decision in the history of the UK and the BBC in Scotland insult us with bringing in a Unionist mouthpiece to lead a bunch of “ignorant” graduates.  (Ignorant in that they will have no experience of TV, no experience of politics, no experience of reporting, no experience in … well, fill in the rest)
       
      Words can not describe the loathing I have developed for TASS in Scotland

    135. Sonas says:

      @David Halliday
      “Down and dirty”? Who would you rather have leading a campaign to persuade the public to come over to your cause: McDougall or Jenkins? Remember the results of the poll. Who is the least believed? 

      Looks to me like some people just have had it in for Blair from day one. I think his obvious lack of political side when being interviewed is an asset as regards the public.
       
      Agreed 100%.  Blair J doesn’t talk like a politician and he doesn’t try to evade questions. That might lead to him being “ambushed” in interviews as someone said but actually think he is playing the long game – overall strategy more important than tactics. I don’t think it matters if points are scored in a TV interview. We know that most people distrust politicians and the media. I think it’s really positive that BJ is NOT playing them at their own game. IMO it’s this straightforward approach coupled with boots on the ground campaigning that will win this.
       
      I get a bus through Govan as part of my work commute. Sitting on the bus this morning reading Twitter the thought struck me that I was quite possibly the only person on the crowded bus who was even aware of this storm in a teacup. Most of the other passengers looked like they had more pressing matters on their minds. The message needs to get to them and this distraction matters not a f**k in the grand scheme of things.

    136. Bill C says:

      @The Rev- Thanks Stu, the reason I ask is that she was on Kate Higgin’s  website last night praising her stance for criticising Blair Jenkins and the YES team.  It appears that Women for Indy are not all that they seem? Or is that just another conspiracy theory? Whatever, Ms Higgin’s intent of sowing dissent seems to be working.

    137. molly says:

      Slightly O/T but on the subject of the press. As people have already said, this is no ordinary campaign.Already, we have crowd funded a survey , there is a radio channel dedicated to Indy, there are more websites commenting on Scottish Independence than there is hours in the day to read them . So would it be impossible for someone with the skills to contact YES Scotland and line up a list of interviews ,discussing Independence from the great and the good to Mrs so and so  or relevant topics of the day and fire it on utube daily? Apart from giving information, it would allow people to make up their own mind ,especially if it is not politicians doing all the talking.
      For a wee while, Ive been thinking by the end of the campaign, I think all the YESSERS will be pretty much connected by facebook anyway ,so there is an ideal way to show the interviews.
      NNS were doing it for a wee while and it was fascinating listening to ordinary people give their view. Pro Independence sites dominate ,well lets start using what we’ve got.
      If you want 5 versions of stovies I’m your woman but computer stuff I don’t have the skills, but one of us does.

    138. Sonas says:

      I suspect what could be far more damaging is that Yes have probably been building up a fairly large list of people who are pro-yes but have so far been keeping quiet about it, so that they can be used as and when required.
       
      Cath – I know that Yes Scotland have been talking a lot behind the scenes in this way and trying to persuade various respected folk to “come out” as pro-yes. Some, I am sure, will have said they will not out themselves, others will be considering it. Others will be keeping their powder dry and will come into the debate at the right point.
       
      So you have a very good point.

    139. Bubbles says:

      Sorry I couldn’t respond with a name. Work gets in the way I’m afraid. But yes, Stu has it right. I can’t understand what’s going on over at Burdz’R’Us.

    140. Albalha says:

      O/T ish Mr I Rankin has decided Rebus is a NO voter, Siobhan a YES and himself? In the don’t know camp.
       

    141. beachthistle says:

      @Albalha
      However the case of the current Head of News and Current Affairs, John Boothman, is quite a different case and he should not be in that role, imo.
      And in mine too, 100%. I can imagine why the Yes campaign and SNP don’t name/mention him (i..e not playing the dirty personalisation game that No are playing re Salmond, Jenkins, etc.), as I suspect they are intimidated, perceive that Boothman has a Murdochian grip on the Scottish MSM agenda, and a (if not the) major player in the Scottish media omerta. 
      But I don’t understand why Yesses outside the official campaign, such as us on WoS, are not making a bigger deal about the position and power Boothman has within the BBC, his Labour background, etc.  – i.e.  letting as many people as possible know/become aware about him.
      Any plans for a ‘just-saying-style’ profile-type article about Boothman, Rev Stuart?
       

    142. Albalha says:

      @beachthistle
      The people they should be taking it up with is the BBC Trust, but you know Scotland is a small place and politicians on all sides will know Boothman personally so probably not keen to make a fuss.
      He probably has a lot more input on the TV side, don’t think he cares too much about radio, hence the savage cuts in that area.

    143. HandandShrimp says:

      Murray
       
      It has got nothing to do with whether there was a breach. All Bitter (and by God they are bitter) Together want is the headline “Yes Scotland Reported”. It doesn’t matter a toss that the Charities Commission throw the accusation in the bin as utterly without foundation in three months time. All they want is the headline, which their media loyalists will supply at the drop of a hat. There is no honesty in this process, it is corrupt and rotten to its very core. It is called black propaganda. It is the essence of negative campaigning. However, it can only work really effectively if there is no recourse to counter such accusations. Facebook, blogs and alternative media outlets like Wings, allows us to counter-attack. This is 1984 where the Winstons can kick back. Trust in journalists, and television news is at an all time low. They are not in an impregnable position, their coat is on a shoogly peg (to mix metaphors a tad although castles can have shoogly pegs in the cloakroom). We just have to be remorseless in exposing their scams, lies and tricks. That is why they hate cybernats so much (that and we are quite dashing and ubiquitous)  🙂

    144. scottish_skier says:

      We’ve been through so many of these ‘Will destroy the SNP / indy’ stories before I fail to understand why people get worried about them.
       
      A cause / party can only bring itself down; no amount of attacks/smears from the opposition will do it. The party/cause has to do something really clearly and obviously bad for the electorate to turn against it. The £100 for an article will not make the slightest difference to anything. The hacking story in contrast will have caused interest however and is a blow to No.
       
      Best thing about the last few days is the publicity YesScotland has got. Should be known to many more people now who hadn’t being paying much attention.

    145. Macart says:

      (that and we are quite dashing and ubiquitous)
       
      We do resemble that remark. 😀

    146. Indy_Scot says:

       
      I am not sure if this has been mentioned before, but maybe it might be an idea to try and get a snap shot of the publics opinion of the trustworthiness of the TV media along the lines of,
       
      Do you think that BBC Scotland in particular Reporting Scotland presents news stories in a way that is biased towards the union?

    147. CameronB says:

      Five kinds molly, wow,. Your not just chucking in different curry powders? 😉
       
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ul8K60BHPXM

    148. MajorBloodnok says:

      HandandShrimp says: (that and we are quite dashing and ubiquitous).
       
      I say!

    149. Albalha says:

      @indyscot
      I think that’s a good idea, of course it could be even more explicit ….. Do you think it is appropriate that the Head of News and Current Affairs is closely associated with the Labour Party and is the partner of a former Labour Minister at Holyrood.
      I have said it before this would not happen at BBC HQ. Clearly folks who live together don’t always share the same views (of course in this case we know), but they should not risk the accusation being made of someone in such a senior role.
       

    150. Cath says:

      “Blair Jenkins?  I haven’t made up my mind yet.  It would be one hell of a wheeze to get an undercover unionist in such a high position in the Yes campaign.”
       
      Guys, that kind of talk, and saying women for indy is s front is playing right into the unionists hands. And it’s a way in which madness lies. Equally some on Twitter – often women – are saying Rev Stu will lose us the referendum.
       
      Please let’s not go down that route. If someone says they’re pro-indy, and is working for or with a pro-indy organisation, don’t accuse them of being some kind of fifth columnist just because they have a different view, or different debating style to you. There’s a whole country to be won over and people will come to it through different arguments, styles and all the rest. Trust is vital.
       
      Of course the no side will have tactics that involve infiltration (the yes side probably do too). Unless or until someone is patently doing something to undermine the campaign, don’t waste time and energy looking for suspects. All that will achieve is everyone suspecting everyone else, which will self-destruct any campaign – actually Scottish Labour look like they’re already self-destructing that way.
       
      The yes campaign is a very positive one with a message that’s positive, hopeful and truthful. The no one is just lies, smears and fear. Watch out for people in our camp who are overly extreme, or actually out-and-out undermining the campaign and avoid them. That’s all.

    151. Red squirrel says:

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-23809443 
      £31M investment in new accommodation at Faslane. Have MOD not noticed they are on notice to pack their toys and go?

    152. Hetty says:

      O/T
       I watched the first interview with Alex Salmond on Russian Tv. Very balanced and good questioning and well thought out answers. It’s on youtube,  search;
      ‘R T Interviews Alex Salmond on Scottish Independence’ Haven’t had time to watch the 2nd part yet.
      This is the sort of coverage we should be seeing and more, in a democratic country, but not so in the uk in it’s present form.

    153. Brian Powell says:

      Albalha.
      Thanks for the info. I was interested because I was trying to work through the chain of responsibility for how a piece of ‘news’ would be distorted or fabricated and still be put out.
      e.g. it would seem a whole team would have to know that the Lucinda Creighton rebuttal of what she was reported to say was being suppressed; that the BBC Scotland report of the Luxemburg offical’s statement on Scotland in the EU had been changed to distort the implications.
      The team would know rather than the individual reporter pushing an agenda.
      One would think that common sense bells would be ringing if news coming from a feed did not fit with the normal behaviour of the person or organisation the news was about, and someone would say check this.
      It is extraordinary that BBC, STV, most Scottish newspapers and Menzies Campbell would all come out with the same lines. I don’t expect you to know, but it would be interesting to find out how all could be directed so easily.
      (Sad that the LibDems, who once could have fronted someone of the calibre of David Owen, now have Willie Rennie and Menzies Campbell behaving as trained monkeys dancing for the organ grinder, whoever that is at the moment.)

    154. Cath says:

      “It is extraordinary that BBC, STV, most Scottish newspapers and Menzies Campbell would all come out with the same lines.”
       
      The co-ordination of propaganda between the no camp, UK government and media is indeed extraordinary. And sinister.

    155. Albalha says:

      @BrianPowell
      Now the reporter out and about is different in some ways. In that case a reporter and at least a producer would be out in the field, do the interviews, decide on the angles to go with themselves BUT there could be a senior editor overseeing it, guiding it, back at base. In the case of Raymond B’s series my guess is someone was overseeing it, usually the case with a ‘series’.
      This doesn’t have the same wide ranging discussion as the day to day programmes do. ( Due to the savage cuts in radio even these editorial meetings won’t be as rigorous).
      And really the relentless nature of news programming means a lot of checks and research that would have been done in years gone by, simply no longer take place.
      Speaking from a Radio 4 perspective we would have time to discuss, analyse such a report, indeed, at one time I was Head of the Planning department and the group of reporters, we could spend hours, days debating accuracy, angles etc.
      We had regular planning meetings that others would come too and chip in their thoughts.
       
       

    156. Morag says:

      Cath – yes, yes, I know.  It’s just something that I wondered about, and haven’t said anything about until now.  It’s probably pure paranoid fantasy.  I expect he’ll come out all guns blazing and pull off a few awsome stunts that will put the most sceptical mind at rest.

    157. Albalha says:

      Self correction ….oops come ‘to’ not ‘too’

    158. Hetty says:

      For some comedy if you are feeling a bit downhearted today, watch ‘Rising Damp’ on youtube, it’s got to be episode 7, ‘Stand up and be Counted’ and there are 3 parts to it.I was in stitches when the liberal candidate came on, and there’s something about why women don’t get so involved in politics and vote! The Miss Jones character is a ‘don’t know’, it’s hilarious, really is.  Except for the then accepted 1970’s jibes at black people which certainly are verging on racism, it’s worth a watch.
       

    159. CameronB says:

      The fact that the No Scotland MSM is so blatant, makes it all the more sinister, IMO.

    160. Archie [not Erchie] says:

      @ Hetty – It was a great interview by Sopie from RT.com. I have to confess I sent her a tweet thanking her for her professionalism and respectful questioning of AS. I ended the tweet with these words ‘Please come back we need you’ Did I get a reply?
      Oh Yes I Did 🙂
       

    161. Juteman says:

      I’m quite relaxed about the hacking. The British State was always going to do anything required, and I expect the Yes campaign know this. At least I hope they do.
      Major strategy discussions are hopefully only being done face to face.

    162. Cath says:

      “I expect he’ll come out all guns blazing and pull off a few awsome stunts that will put the most sceptical mind at rest.”
       
      I’m not sure awesome stunts are the way we’ll win to be honest – certainly not awesome stunts by men in suits. In fact I’d say that’s probably why the Yes campaign looks like it isn’t doing much – because it’s doing a lot of behind the scenes, gradual building groundwork. It faces a massively uphill task against a uniformly hostile media, a British state ranged against independence, smears, attacks, a public that isn’t interested unless its spoon-fed by the media.
       
      We can’t know what’s going on, and I imagine a lot of it will be quite sensitive, which is why this hacking thing is worrying – though if they were sensible they’d be assuming everything was being read anyway. But then that’s still only the HQ of Yes – the actual Yes campaign is on the ground.

    163. molly says:

      CameronB , I brought them up thinking the best bits were the burnt bits stuck to the bottom of the pot , the other 4 varieties just seem different  because the chisel can get through the tatties 

    164. G H Graham says:

      Up against a cute looking but lightweight interviewer last night, Blair failed. Maybe he couldn’t keep his mind away from trying to look up Ms. Dougall’s skirt ?
      He could have clarified for the hard of thinking that The Herald retains full editorial control of its content & that anyone submitting copy to them know that the paper is at liberty to edit, chop & attach whatever headlines they think appropriate. he could have explained that one can also demand that conditions be met but it is the paper that will decide whether to meet them or not, including the one that reveals who the author is, who commissioned the copy or indeed if the author was rewarded for the article.
      Blair gave the impression that it was he who was responsible for making those decisions when it was obviously not & never will be. That impression, false though it is, is the one that many viewers will be contemplating & using to judge Blair, the YES campaign & inevitably the SNP. And Salmond. And Salmond’s ties. And his haircut. And the brand of betting shop he visits etc etc.
      Ms. Dougall should be very pleased with her performance because she got the admission she saught while mostly avoiding the alleged criminal activity regarding the hacking of YES campaign’s computers.
      It’s time for Blair to start sprinkling a few nasty pills in his porridge in the morning or consider having someone else join him in a good guy/bad guy duo. Leaving his post now would be very damaging indeed.

    165. dmw42 says:

      My apologies for going O/T here but I’ve just seen a report on the state broadcaster’s website that “The government says its Coastal Communities Fund is being extended to 2014-15, due to rising marine revenue” with Danny Alexander stating the fund was “giving our seaside towns and villages a real chance to grow as the nation benefits from our marine resources“.
       
      Wait, what?
       
      The money behind the Coastal Community Fund comes from the Crown Estates revenues from  the rights to fish-farms, wind farms, ports and marinas, much of this revenue being generated in Scotland.
       
      The last record I have of revenues earned was £47.4 million and, although Scotland has 59.26% of the mainland coastline (11,550 miles), Scotland only received £4 million (8.4%)  of these revenues.
       
      And yet, the article indicates that the majority of the fund (if not all) will be going to England’s ‘deprived seaside areas’.
       
      What the feck is going on?
       
      (For info,England has 6,261 miles of coastline (32.12%), Wales has 1,680 miles of coastline (8.62%))
       
      NOTE: For the record, I support Scottish independence and have waived my fee of £13.76 for this article*
      *calculated on the basis that Professor Bulmer received 8p per word for his 1200 word article in the Herald.

    166. Shinty says:

      Best thing about the last few days is the publicity YesScotland has got. Should be known to many more people now who hadn’t being paying much attention.

      Couldn’t agree more SS, I’ve come across quite a few folk who know nothing of YES Scotland, even although they intend to vote Yes.
      Not everyone is glued to the TV/keyboard/twitter/facebook etc (strange as that may seem to some)
       

    167. dmw42 says:

      edit, Scottish coastline includes islands.

    168. Tony Little says:

      @Cath
       
      I agree let’s not look for problems, but this should not prevent us from pointing out to supporters that dubious “anger” at the YES campaign will be picked up and exaggerated by the hostile MSM and may well dissuade some wavering voters.  Everything we all do and say will be scrutinised for weakness by the NBT side.  
       
      Kate Higgins had an open goal last night to squash any criticism of YES, instead she raised even higher the question of Blair Jenkins’ suitability to do his job, and by extension the credibility and “honesty” of YES Scotland.  If that is not playing into the enemy’s hands, I don’t know what is.  And it’s not the first time.  
       
      By all means let’s think about how to do the job better, but the frothing blog she wrote followed by her TV appearance (why do you think she was asked?) was a gift to No Better Together.

    169. Gordon Bain says:

      @ Hetty
       
      Rising Damp was not racist, quite the reverse actually. It was, and still is, bloody brilliant though.

    170. creigs1707repeal says:

      PFI – ‘Pandas for Indy’.  Well – we have just about everything else.
       
      YES Scotland.

    171. ianbrotherhood says:

      The stage is now nicely set for ‘Calmanballs 2’.

    172. a supporter says:

      I think most of you need to calm down and get what has happened into proper perspective. It is a storm in a teacup contrived and reported on by the media because that sells newspapers, which IS their business. However your man in the street isn’t interested in claptrap like that and dismisses it as just politicians and journalists yapping like dogs doing what they always do.
      The media are not much interested in the hacking for some very simple reasons. Firstly hacking allegations are old hat in news terms. There is an article every day in some newspaper somewhere about a person or organisation being hacked. Also because the police are involved now they are restricted in their comments on the hacking. The media WILL be very interested in the hacking when/if someone is arrested and charged for it.
      Meanwhile they have the perfectly good story (to them) which claims that the YES campaign has been breaking the campaign rules. And enhancing that story no end is the NO mob baying with the media against the YES campaign, plus a few cringing YES ‘supporters’ doing collateral damage. All of which has helped the story run longer than it should have done.

    173. Cath says:

      “The British State was always going to do anything required, and I expect the Yes campaign know this. At least I hope they do.”
       
      I did wonder yesterday whether that was where some of the out-and-out rubbish the MSM have been spouting might have come from? If Yes were sensible, their strategy would be based on assuming everything would be read.

      “Hey, Nic. Hope the new job at Yes is going well. Can you make sure when you speak to Mickey Moore you get devo-max on the ballot paper? To be honest I’m feart as fuck of independence AND feart of losing too. If that fallback isn’t on the paper I’ll cry and call off the whole referendum. But please, please don’t tell anyone cos it’s a right riddie after banging on about it all this time. And it would be terrible if  Alan Cochrance or Ian Smart got to know about it. Cheers, Alex”

       
      “Naw, don’t worry about a second question and devo-max at all Blair. It won’t be there.”

    174. CameronB says:

      @ dmw42
      I am not disputing your point, which would appear to be standard practice when it comes to milking Scotland. However, I believe the most deprived town in Britain, is on the south east coast. It would help if I could remember its name, but…

    175. Murray McCallum says:

      dmw42
      I remember watching “Coast” on the BBC.  The coast of Scotland is apparently the 2nd bendiest coastline in the World behind Norway.
      Now wait for this … … mathematically it is so bendy that its length is “infinite”!  That’s what some Professor of bendy coastlines said.  The length of the Scottish coastline goes in and out so much it is impossible to measure and varies significantly depending on the scale of the measuring device you use – the smaller the scale of measure / device the longer the length of coastline.
      You therefore need to factor in the infinite length of the Scottish coastline into your calculations.

    176. G H Graham says:

      The most miserable town on the south east coast of England is London.

    177. Sneddon says:

      CameronB  I think you mean Hastings.  I remember that report as well.  A real dump.

    178. Boorach says:

      IMPORTANT NOTE
      You may have seen in the media that the personal account of a Yes Scotland employee was subjected to an attack by a hacker. While this is annoying and potentially damaging to democracy, Yes Scotland’s own systems were not affected in any way and are completely secure. Let me reassure you that your personal details are completely safe: you can make donations, buy merchandise, volunteer and contact us in complete confidence.
       

      Above is extract from YesScotland’s weekly newsletter

    179. Murray McCallum says:

      Apologies all. In maters coastline and shape thereof, the Technical term is “wiggliness” and not “bendiness”.
      http://www.cartography.org.uk/default.asp?contentID=749
      This article explains better than me.

    180. Jimbo says:

      When, oh when will the pro Indy guests on Newsnight/Scotland Tonight etc. learn to deal with the badgering they must know they are about to receive?
       
      All Blair Jenkins had to do was stop Rona Dougall in her tracks by saying ‘Please allow me to finish answering the question – without badgering or rudely butting in with another’. Or, ‘What is the point of asking me a question if you are not prepared to let me to answer it?’. Or, ‘You keep talking over me, don’t you want the viewers to hear the answer to the question?’.
       
      Show them up for the poor quality interviewers that they are.

    181. CameronB says:

      @ Murray McCallum
      I’m way out of my depth here, but I believe the ‘infinite length’ is arrived at by taking account of fractal theory. Apparently natural patterns self-repeat,. so the closer you look at the ‘wrinkles’ the more you find.

       
      I think this was one of the concepts that got the financial sector believing in infinite profit, at no risk. Look where that got us.
       

    182. MajorBloodnok says:

      @Murray McCallum
       
      Slartibartfart has a lot to answer for.

    183. X_Sticks says:

      Albalha says:

      “However the case of the current Head of News and Current Affairs, John Boothman, is quite a different case and he should not be in that role, imo.”
      Couldn’t agree more Albalha.
      I suspect that Daniel maxwell is still hiding somewhere in Broadcasting Better Together. His name has mysteriously disappeared (he used to edit Newnicht) since he closed the blogs. My last correspondence with him at the time:
      From: daniel.maxwell@bbc.co.uk
      To: newsonline.complaints@bbc.co.uk
      Dear Mr ____,
      Thanks for getting in touch. I’ve decided to close the comments on the
      Brian and Douglas blogs as a rule of thumb. Instead I am opening up
      comments across all our content more regularly – that way I am giving
      people the opportunity to comment on a wider range of subject areas –
      recent examples being minimum pricing and high speed rail.
      That’s my reasoning. I obviously disagree with the assertion that I’ve
      done it to stop unsubstantiated propoganda as you describe it.
      If you’re not satisfied then you have already indicated the
      opportunities available to take this further.
      All the very best,

      Daniel Maxwell
      Editor
      Newsnight Scotland & News Online
      BBC Pacific Quay
      ——————-
       
      Have you had an opportunity to comment on a wider range of subject areas? Anyone?
       
      No, me either.
       
      The cosy little labour nest in PQ needs to be outed.

    184. Sneddon says:

      “indeed if in 1745 Bonnie Prince Charlie had not bottled it at Derby  he would have taken the throne back and who knows what might have happened.”
      There still would have been a UK and British Empire  for a start.  The referendum campaign is no place for speculative rubbish ‘what if’ etc’ Let’s just deal with the here and now. and not waste energy.  Your phrase “time to remove gloves’  What do you mean Rod?  Take a chill pill  or we’ll be suspecting you’re a fellow traveller with Agent Higgins

    185. morgan mkeown says:

      Yeah the whole thing is a smoke screen. I don`t really care about the who paid who for what piece of “Yes”journalistic licence dressed up as a peer reviewed journal.(be open and transparent about it). Or somebody hacking into their account(wrong-bring to book). I`m more interested in Bill Walker elected as an SNP MSP and his misogyny and assaultive behaviour…alleged to have been rumoured back in 2008 to the SNP hierarchy yet still selected in 2011.
      All being fair and equitable:
      Using the much lauded UKIP analogy of press/ blog vilification for even farting in the wind the wrong way. This must be representative of the party and the Yes campaign as a whole. Or do the same standards of Tarring a whole party with the same brush not apply? Just asking…..         

    186. Albalha says:

      @X_Sticks
      I think he is now in charge of Reporting Scotland!

    187. dmw42 says:

      Thanks all, I’m off to write an oped with Slartibartfast on ‘wiggly coastlines’.
       
      So long, and thanks for all the fish

    188. Cath says:

      “alleged to have been rumoured”
       
      Well there you go then…

    189. Murray McCallum says:

      I’ve taken dmw42’s figures, added some complex mathematical models and did some quick recalculations.  I’ll run them past Menzies Campbell tonight.
      Length of UK coastlines: 
      England 6,500 miles
      Wales 2,000 miles
      Scotland 137,000,000 miles
       
      When it comes to the negotiations for sharing any income / assets to do with coastline we need the facts.  I have a different calculation for costs / liabilities btw.

    190. CameronB says:

      @ Murray McCallum
      Scotland 137,000,000 miles
       
      Is that at high or low tide? 🙂

    191. Albalha says:

      @X_Sticks
      Looking at the last post I realise it may come over as a joke, but he really is the Editor now of Reporting Scotland.

    192. The Rough Bounds says:

      I really do wish that people like Blair Jenkins when being interviewed on the TV would remember the Latin phrase: Castigat Ridendo Mores.
       
      It means, laughter succeeds where lecturing won’t; the point being that ridicule is the technique that exposes the folly of mankind.
       
      Mr. Jenkins rose to Ms. Dougall’s bait like a fish. He had to take the issue seriously of course, but should have taken the opportunity to burst out laughing at the ridiculous accusations being thrown at him by that silly woman.
       
      Something like, ‘Och, dinna be sae daft woman; that’s just baloney’ would have taken the wind right out of her sails, and he could have returned to the much more serious aspect of the interview that was the hacking of Yes Scotland’s emails.
      What was wrong with her anyway? She had a face like fizz from the very beginning.
      Is it wise to ask?

    193. Marker Post says:

      @Boorach
       
      Not sure what “completely secure” means nowadays, when reportedly GCHQ has a pair of crocodile clips on every subsea cable going into and out of UK.
       

    194. Weedeochandorris says:

      “People that are thin skinned and have a soft heart, when attempting to make their dreams a reality, always concern themselves with the appraisals of others.”  Dont remember where I got that one from but it’s good to remember while we battle through this.   Here’s another few nuggets from Sun Tzu about the art of war.  We’re in one and the other side are employing all sorts of tactics.  Bit premature if you ask me and AS is playing a blinder!
      “All warfare is based on deception. Thus, when able to attack, we must seem unable. Hold out bait to entice the enemy. Feign disorder, and crush him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is quick to anger, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.”

    195. Morag says:

      It means, laughter succeeds where lecturing won’t; the point being that ridicule is the technique that exposes the folly of mankind.
       
      Salmond does that a lot.  I think that technique is a big part of why some people call him smug, to be honest.  I think he smiles and looks complacent because otherwise he’d be ripping Paxman’s head off and stuffing it down his windpipe.

    196. Gordon Bain says:

      @ dmw42
       
      i expect you’ve already factored in the fundamental interconnectedness of all things?

    197. G H Graham says:

      Rev,
      Just for fun, you might ask in your next poll if any of the people asked have ever heard of the following Unionist trolls ..
      Euan McColm
      John McIntyre OBE
      Fraser Nelson (2012 Paid Troll of The Year)
      Magnus Gardham
      Michael Kelly
      Alan Cochrane
      And anyone else who is barking mad enough to make the list.

    198. dmw42 says:

      Gordon Bain, I had a feeling in my water you were going to say that 🙂

    199. Weedeochandorris says:

      Spot on Morag!

    200. Boorach says:

      @ Marker Post
       
      no need for crocodile clips when you pass laws requiring ISPs to store all info passing through them for access by employees of Cheltenham Ladies College

    201. Brian milligan says:

      BT can only cry wolf so often,Then it has no effect, ah it is a sheep in wolfs clothing and it seems breeding with lemmings. Oops this cliff  I made it myself. see ya ba ba ba .
       

    202. Morag says:

      Dragging this back to some early criticism in this thread, I can’t see how it could pooibly be construed as misogynistic unless that’s because the evil interrogator (sory interviewer) happens to be a woman.  And isn’t that part of equality, ladies?  We get to have these sorts of jobs to and we can out-Paxman Paxman too, so there?
       
      The hapless, bullied victim is portrayed sympathetically, as an abused victim.  The last thing Stu is trying to indicate is that she really does bear responsibility for what has happened to her.  That’s the whole point and it’s perfectly done.  That everyone reading that can see that the real victim is being victimised all over again by the interview.
       
      Sorry, but anyone who thinks that is misogynistic is seriously messed up.

    203. starlaw says:

      don’t think this fiasco has done any harm whatsoever , the publicity has been well worth it , with Yes Scotland emerging as the honest brokers , and the opposition, newsnicht and all as the evil bullying baddies        

    204. Murray McCallum says:

      out-Paxman Paxman
      I really dislike the cult of news presenter. They are not the news or the show.  It’s amazing how a job that basically involves reading an autocue +90% of the time needs people with such big egos.

    205. Morag says:

      It’s a skill to present stuff on the broadcast media, and not everyone has it.  Why do we see a lot of Sue Barker and almost nothing of Virginia Wade?  However, it’s not that big a deal.

    206. HandandShrimp says:

      The Rough Bounds
       
      That is true but laughter is an art, some people just come across as rude when they try something like that (Cameron and his “Calm down dear” for example).
       
      Salmond when asked on QT if his legal move over the leaders debates was just a cheap gimmick replied “Certainly not!…..It was actually quite an expensive gimmick” That got a lot of laughs for speed of response and honesty. The number of people that can do that well are few though.   

    207. Morag says:

      Something else that struck me while I was reading Severin Carrell’s article.  He described Elliott Bulmer as a “PhD student”.  I don’t know exactly what his position is, but he published a fairly major book on constitutional reform in 2011, and he has a senior role in that constitutional research group.  Nobody let me play in that sort of league while I was doing my PhD, that’s for sure.  And all the media are pretty unanimous in addressing him as “Dr. Bulmer”, which sure suggests to me that his thesis was accepted some time ago.
       
      More unjustified belittling of an independence supporter from our Severin?

    208. Cath says:

      “Sorry, but anyone who thinks that is misogynistic is seriously messed up.”
       
      I don’t think anyone on here seriously suggested that. It’s just the tedious unionist trolls are very predictable 🙂

    209. Paula Rose says:

      Rev can we have something new to get our teeth into – please, pretty please?

    210. orpheuslyre says:

      Morag – he completed in 2012. PhD from Galsgow Uni. Title – A Free Scotland? An Analysis of the SNP’s 2002 Draft Constitution for Scotland

    211. Morag says:

      Well there you go.  “PhD student” my eye.  Severin wrong again.

    212. Albalha says:

      @Morag
      And here is his linkthing profile, didn’t realise he’d been a military man and fluent in Arabic, interesting
      http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/w-elliot-bulmer/71/ba/878

    213. AnneDon says:

      Given the difficulty of getting a fair hearing on MSM, I’ve just suggested to Yes Scotland on Twitter that they crowdfund buying pages from newspapers and publish their own articles on them. What do people think?
       
      We’ve seen that crowdfunding can be successful on this very website;  we also have no expectation of getting an equal hearing on newspaper pages. This way, we could put an unedited story in front of the people of Scotland when required, with no possibility of being accused of being sleekit. Of course, I have no idea how much a page in The Metro would actually cost!
       
      I remember Dexys Midnight Runners did it in the 1980s when they didn’t trust the music press to write about them without making them look daft.

    214. Morag says:

      Thanks, Alison.  Not exactly your typical PhD student even before he submitted, either.  And now you mention it, someone else mentioned that he’d been in the navy and if it got down and dirty they’d back him against Brewer – or Paxman – any day.
       
      I met him briefly at the SNP conference in 2011, when he was trying to sell me his book.  I should probably have bought it.  He wasn’t totally concealing the fact that he was a card-carrying SNP member, either.

    215. Albalha says:

      @Morag
      Yes I found it interesting too, hadn’t realised. He’s come over rather well in the post teacup storm interviews, imo.
      Re Severin I think he thought he’d found a sleepy outpost and now his every utterance is scrutinised, ha, serves him right. Doubt he shares his nickname with Morse’s first as it were.

    216. Morag says:

      Having heard him speak and participate in a panel discussion at the 2011 conference, I was well aware that he was no push-over.  The beard is new though, as far as I remember.

    217. rabb says:

      O/T
      Just completed a panelbase poll centred around Scottish Independence. Anyone else had it?

      There was no mention of space monsters 🙂
       
       

    218. Jamie Arriere says:

      Catching the tail end of this thread – I was thinking of sending an email to STV of my reaction to last night’s programme but I suspect there’s more eloquent and less sweary people than me to do so.
       
      I did think that after all the events of the last few years with illegal hacking of communications, the trial & conviction of people doing so, the demise of NoW, the Leveson Inquiry and all, there would be no more of this kind of activity and if there were, the media would be all over it like a rash to prevent any prospect of media regulation. Last night proved me completely wrong! If this disappears into a police hush-up and a media blackout, all the utterances of outrage at Leveson over infringements of people’s rights & dignity will be shown to be hypocritical horseshit of the highest order!
       
      Oh, and another phrase that bugs me refers to “private emails” – I’ve yet to hear of any public email addresses open to anyone to come and have a look at its contents. Private seems to imply that there’s something to hide. All emails are private as far as I know, only intended to be read by senders & receivers. Someone correct me if I’m wrong
       

    219. Albalha says:

      @AnneDon
      Editorial adverts, you mean? Some group or other did that recently, can’t remember, it may return to me. I’m a fan of billboards, myself. Buy out the space for months and keep changing the billboard, make it a talking point, striking visuals stick in the memory.
      Better still if done with a hint of humour. As I posted on the site a week or so ago the costs are relatively modest. And won’t put the cash in the pockets of the MSM.

    220. Thepnr says:

      @Morag
      Coincidentally I bought Dr. Bulmers book from amazon just last week, it is a bit dry to my taste but has many thought provoking paragraphs. Will need to be read more than once though just to “get it”. 

    221. Albalha says:

      @Rabb
      What did they ask? Are you allowed to tell?

    222. Albalha says:

      @Morag
      Beards seem to be de rigueur these days. Boys and fashion.

    223. Thepnr says:

      @rabb
      See there you are, you had almost given up too but now your opinion matters.
      As it always did!

    224. Juteman says:

      Billboards.
      Yes.

    225. dmw42 says:

      AnneDon et al
       
      For those seeking a genuine pro independence newspaper, try a subscription to The Scots Independent http://www.scotsindependent.org/
       
      Go on, ‘Fly the Flag’.

    226. Jimbo says:

      Perhaps the press don’t want to focus on the hacking incident as it will remind people of the MSM’s unprincipled hacking activities?

    227. rabb says:

      Albaha
       
      It was quite simple.
       
      1. Who did I vote for in 2011 SGE
      2. Asked the indy question (Should Scotland be blah blah)
      3. How strongly I feel 1-10
      4. How likely to vote 1-10
      5. If tories looked like winning 2015 GE would it make me more likely to vote Yes
      6. If Labour looked like winning would it change my mind.
      7. How happy was I with Salmond, Cameron, Milliband & Clegg.
       
      It then told me I was a nationalist cockbag and it hoped I would die of gonorrhoea.
       
      OK, I made the last bit up 🙂

    228. Albalha says:

      @Jimbo
      They’ve clearly chosen to hype up the £100 red herring angle but the hacking is still being investigated so difficult to report in detail at this stage. Time will tell if it is fully reported if/when details are released.

    229. Albalha says:

      @Rabb
      Thanks for that, sound quite similar to the questions asked on the WoS poll. Now gonorrhea, how very Royal, had me going there!

    230. gordoz says:

      Apolgolies, Aplologies, Appleologies ……..
      Och ….Sorry – Rev
      Its just that Kate Higgins … did ma’ nut in last night on the box.
      What a stoater .. she is (She’s on the YES side ???? // You were absolutely right about her – ‘The cow that said bahhhh & all that’

    231. scottish_skier says:

      Albaha
       
      It was quite simple.
       
      Sounds like Panelbase for The Times.

    232. Murray McCallum says:

      rabb
      OK, I made the last bit up
       
      Impeccable standards of reporting rabb.  No career for you in the meeja.

    233. Albalha says:

      @ScottishSkier
      Are these new questions for them? It just struck me the how you voted, what happens if Labour/Tory wins etc was what the site’s poll was aiming at. Of course maybe the Times has asked them before?

    234. gordoz says:

      STV last night : What is it with all our media at the moment in a frenzy to avoid the story and go for the loyalist line. Bill Walker ?? / Bulmer Payment.
      Jenkins should have told that Rona to shut up and let him make his point, (was it just me or did she come across like a rabid school teacher)
      Lets just buy in all our TV from abroad after 2014 …. we’ll see these guys on the tills at Asda eventually. (Or the scottish version)
      Did anyoone hear Marcus Gardham on B Taylor show ? What a weasel ……….
      Said there was no deception going on,
      but he didn’t think Yes should pay for stories.
      What he wouldn’t answer was a query of how the ‘hacker’ new to go in and look for the very specific email account where the Bulmer payment was discussed at YES headquarters, as he said it was for his employers to comment on that.
      The hint is in that they new Prof Bulmer liked getting ‘costs paid’ for his stories but they weren’t prepared to pay. So 2+2 (Bulmer & YES), who then hinted to the kacking community that this might be something worth unearthing ?? Oh now thats stetching it. (Is it)

    235. Morag says:

      I wonder what you say if you’re a 100% Yes supporter, when they then ask you if the prospect of the Tories getting in would it make you more likely to vote Yes.  I mean, you can’t get any more likely to vote Yes than I am already.  I’ve been waiting for this for 50 years, dammit.

    236. Albalha says:

      You know Blair Jenkins said they were first alerted to the hacking a week past Wednesday, it’s only 4 days ago or so that the Herald ran the Play Doh consultant, financial problems story. I can’t remember if that story was officially sourced or not.
       

    237. rabb says:

      Morag,
      If I was anymore eager to vote yes I would bleed from every orifice and my head would burst!

      It wasn’t an option on the form though!

    238. scottish_skier says:

      what happens [in terms of indy vote] if Labour/Tory wins etc was what the site’s poll was aiming at.

      They don’t ask that every time, but have asked that before. Tory win boosted Yes to likely considerable majority. Labour win boosted yes too but more to fairly close result.

    239. Murray McCallum says:

      Morag
      I wonder what you say if you’re a 100% Yes supporter, when they then ask you if the prospect of the Tories getting in would it make you more likely to vote Yes.
       
      Could be a cunning unionist ploy to may you think about putting 2 “X”s on the referendum ballot paper beside the Yes box thereby spoiling it? These people know no depths – they are playing mind games with us now!

    240. Colin Dunn says:

      @ les wilson
      “Having watched “STV” becoming more vindictive and more and openly bias than normal . . ”

      ‘biased’ not ‘bias’.

      Hey Morag. Isn’t this your job? Where’re the grammar and syntax police when you need them.

      ;0)

    241. Juteman says:

      I’ve probably been almost polled.
      Anytime the someone on the phone says “Hello, i’m from…..” the phone gets put down.

    242. Albalha says:

      BBC online now has an updated story on Walker. Last night Raymond Buchanan referred to Rob Armstrong being a member of a different party and asked was that behind his decision to speak now, he said no. Anyway do we know what party he’s a member of?
      FYI here’s the BBC story.
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-23804575

    243. Juteman says:

      @Morag.
      What site in Dundee would you think was good for a Yes billboard?

    244. Albalha says:

      @juteman
      I suggested billboards. Trying to visualise the most visible in Dundee, somewhere central preferably driving up from the railway station, the roundabout where you can turn up towards the Perth Road or continue on to Lochee Road, maybe?
      Somewhere to reach drivers and pedestrians.

    245. Albalha says:

      @juteman
      Or Stannergate, lots of options.

    246. Morag says:

      I have never set foot in Dundee in my life.  A pleasure yet to come, I imagine.

    247. handclapping says:

      Half the pedestrians are looking at their smartphones and winnae see it. Better get onto the Council and get the roadworks traffic swivel boards painted red with No the one side and green with Yes the other.

    248. Juteman says:

      The reason I ask, is that I think the ‘normal’ situation for a billboard doesn’t apply for this referendum.
      Polling data seems to show that the more informed folk are, the more likely they are to vote Yes. Commuters are probably more informed that folk stuck in council housing schemes.
      Wouldn’t a billboard in more socially deprived areas have more effect? I don’t mean to be patronising to the good folk of Dundee, but wouldn’t a billboard outside Greggs on Lochee High Street, or Whitfield Shopping Centre, be more likely to be read by the folk we need to get involved?

    249. Marian says:

      We are now seeing a new phase in the Project Fear campaign where they target and pick off individual websites and groups in order to eliminate them and the threat they pose to Project Fear in the hope that only the SNP will be left as an opponent.
      Labour for Indy and National Collective and WoS and now the YES  team have already had some of the treatment. You can be sure that others are in the pipeline too.
      WoS must be be very high on their list of targets and it may be just a matter of time before it is brought down by a concerted attack by Project Fear and its MSM acolytes.

    250. Juteman says:

      My apologies Morag, I meant Albalha. 🙂

    251. Albalha says:

      @juteman
      They’d certainly be cheaper, you could have more than one. Different areas, you get block discounts. And I wouldn’t assume too much about how aware any commuter, or Dundonian is.

    252. Albalha says:

      Apologies to the non Dundonians but @juteman how about Dens Road? Anyway whether anyone else is interested I think it’s worth doing all over Scotland.

    253. scottish_skier says:

      Wouldn’t a billboard in more socially deprived areas have more effect?
      You already have your yes vote in these areas. It’s people in more middle class to well off areas that need persuading they’re not going to lose what they have. Those in socially deprived areas are not feart.

    254. Morag says:

      You know, it’s got to the point that I was actually relieved and almost please when the latest “SNP accused” story turned out to be actually justified.  Of course the claims that the party was warned about Walker in 2008 should be followed up.  At last, something that isn’t trumped-up flummery.
       
      I believe the worst anyone has been guilty of is complacency and lack of diligence, but that is still open to criticism and the press are quite right to have a go.  But isn’t it daft that I’m actually relieved that the story is genuine for a change?

    255. handclapping says:

      If you want to know whats in the papers the ones to ask are the ones who think they think for themselves.

    256. Jamie Arriere says:

      Something strange at Newsnet. Latest story on North Lanarkshire councillor haranguing disabled bedroom tax victim on her doorstep is being blocked with “You are not authorised to view this page” despite access to any other page!
       
      http://www.newsnetscotland.com/index.php/back-end/article-test/7908-demands-for-resignation-and-apology-after-labour-councillor-harangues-bedroom-tax-victim

    257. Juteman says:

      You already have your yes vote in these areas
       
      Even those not on the electoral roll?

    258. molly says:

      Albahala ,I’m in , I really think bus stops as well are good for folk idling away 10 mins. 

    259. IainGraysSubwayLament says:

      Rob Armstrong also took his allegations to John Smith house and labour and they turned him back at reception.
       
      Oddly enough labour and their tame pundits don’t seem to be too keen to highlight that information.

    260. Jamie Arriere says:

      Aha, page can now be viewed.

    261. Albalha says:

      @molly
      Good point. And as they’re smaller they’re cheaper, you can buy them in multiples much like the similar ones in ‘High Streets’, also the underground in Glasgow. Wouldn’t it be great to have a bus stop, High Street, underground etc takeover. Would be difficult for the media to avoid and the international media could be alerted and would probably cover it, particularly with well designed engaging visuals.

    262. Jason says:

      Johann Lamont and Ed Miliband have just done a Q&A session with supporters (and press) in Edinburgh.
       
      Lamont answered a question about a report which said independence might help improve education in Scotland. She answered by saying people in England are poor as well as people in Glasgow (interesting how it’s always Glasgow that Labour talk about when talking about poor people – at least they seem to notice).
       
      Lamont also said she had no problem with people in Labour supporting independence, and that if they persuaded the party, then so be it. 
       

    263. scottish_skier says:

      The Bill Walker story will have no effect on anything.
       
      It’s not as if the SNP said ‘So, he’s a proven wife beater, well we’ll still let him in and cover it all up / pay off his accusers’ or something. There were some rumours spread at lower party levels and it was word against word. He’d no formal charges or anything so was ‘innocent’ when he stood as an MSP.
       
      As soon as things did come fully to light they chucked him out. Now calling for him to resign even though it puts a seat at risk.
       
      No effect on anything. None. Zip. Zilch. Sweet FA. Zero…
       
      People vote based on competence of a party in government and that’s it. Bad eggs will always pop up from time to time in every party. So long as it is dealt with properly, the electorate will not change their VI. Even things were a right mess (which they are not in this case), someone is not going to change from e.g. SNP to Tory or not vote for indy. That’s plain fucking ridiculous to suggest; hence the No campaign use it.

    264. Albalha says:

      @scottishskier
      Have you ever thought of going on a country wide tour and doing a series of Q and A sessions? People would engage. As we approach the darker nights there’s very little to do in the more remote parts of our fine country.
      WoS readers on tour, lots of differnt types of folks on here, all backgrounds etc. We could have a hit on our hands.
      Couldn’t be worse than the first musical Wings on Tour, not a fan myself.

    265. Morag says:

      It’s not as if the SNP said ‘So, he’s a proven wife beater, well we’ll still let him in and cover it all up / pay off his accusers’ or something.

      Indeed.  It seems there was some evidence of past misbehaviour, but hindsight is a wonderful thing and he seems to have been both highly plausible and highly manipulative.

      Do I also hear that the person now agitating that the SNP was warned and should have known is a Labour party activist?  Sorry, that might not be true, I’m asking because I thought I heard that but I’m not sure.

      There is no way on God’s green earth that man would have got through vetting if anyone had had any idea what he was like.  However, it’s always possible to level an accusation of lack of proper diligence.

    266. Thepnr says:

      @juteman
      Clepington Road corner near mains Loan. Probably the most visible in Dundee and also a commuter route for those avoiding the Kingsway.

    267. Albalha says:

      @Morag
      Buchanan last night did make reference to his being a member of another party but didn’t say which one, so you could well be right.

    268. scottish_skier says:

      Even those not on the electoral roll?
       
      Sorry, I meant in terms of voting intention. Your point about lower turnout is important.

    269. Juteman says:

      I personally know lots of folk that are not on the electoral roll. Not all of them have chaotic lifestyles. Speaking to them, they are Yes voters. I do my bit, but a campaign to get them to vote could prove vital.

    270. cynicalHighlander says:

      @ Jamie Arriere
       
      It will still be in editing mode it often happens.

    271. Albalha says:

      @juteman
      A first billboard campaign, large and small ones, could be all about getting people to register, it’d be interesting to know the total number of people not on any electoral roll in Scotland. Clearly the largest number is here in Glasgow.
      You know maybe that could be a campaign all on its own. I don’t know if the YES campaign focus on it or not.
       

    272. AnneDon says:

      @Juteman Billboards a great idea too. I was just thinking of older people who are not online, getting info from MSM. Also, people read pages on newspapers in a way they don’t online.
       
      NB Our Yes group is canvassing in our local area. People are not apathetic – they’re disillusioned, and very willing to vote Yes. We’re taking registration forms with us when canvassing.

    273. Norrie says:

      o/t but
      dhothersall 11:58am via Web
      The @YesScotland account really has been hacked! It’s now posting that dividing UK means closer ties between Scotland and England! #indyref
      I am so tempted to cut the last part of this and repost but it would be like cropping a photograph and taking it out of context.

    274. cath says:

      “Lamont also said she had no problem with people in Labour supporting independence, and that if they persuaded the party, then so be it. ”
       
      Interesting.
       
      “You know maybe that could be a campaign all on its own. I don’t know if the YES campaign focus on it or not.”
       
      I think RIC are doing this.

    275. Albalha says:

      Thanks for the information @cath, I’ll check with the local group.

    276. Marcia says:

      Juteman
       
      Good places for poster sites in Dundee would be Victoria Road, Lochee by-pass, Dens Road, Clepington Road. Corner of Strathmore Avenue at the Five Ways Circle.

    277. jimimac says:

      Aye. Its gloves off time !

    278. john king says:

      ” is on the south east coast. It would help if I could remember its name, but…”
      I think its skegness, not so much south east but north east
        

    279. Tony Little says:

      @Albalhae
       
      I think a road show would be a great idea.  Some time from Spring 2014 onwards, after the White paper has been released and endlessly attacked by the MSM.  Then take the truth to the people.
       
       

    280. john king says:

      “Slartibartfart has a lot to answer for.”
      I know I know, 
      its 42 🙂
        

    281. CameronB says:

      IMO, billboards are in your face 24/7 and for as long as you pay for the space. They communicate the message over and over again.
       
      Better get planning and booking spots, as am am not sure how far in advance you would need to this. I’d suggest the Glasgow Subway. Lots of potential readers and it is where the fight needs to be won.

      @ John King
      Sorry I can’t remember what the town is called but it is definitely on the south cost.

    282. Morag says:

      Hastings is the pits, or reputedly so.  Which might be another way of saying that it offers a great property investment opportunity.

    283. Albalha says:

      @CameronB
      Yes posted the costs of the Glasgow underground a couple of weeks ago, not at all expensive, and you can buy out as many on each train as you like. Anyway I don’t hold the purse strings.
      @TonyLittle
      Thanks for the feedback on the road tour, so you’d be up for at least one leg? Depending on where you live of course.

    284. john king says:

      handclapping says
      “Half the pedestrians are looking at their smartphones and winnae see it.”
      So are half the bloody drivers, 
      my wife points and scowls at them 
      you don’t want my wife pointing and scowling at you,
       feels like judgement day 🙁
       

    285. CameronB says:

      OK, Jaywick’s not quite on the south coast, but its further south than myself. 🙂

    286. john king says:

      “Cheltenham Ladies College”
      is that what they call it now? 
        

    287. Albalha says:

      Meanwhile looks like three dead in the CHC helicopter crash off Shetland. I’m sure a few on here will have views on why helicopter safety is so bad.

    288. john king says:

      “@ John KingSorry I can’t remember what the town is called but it is definitely on the south cost.”
       
      I was listening to a report on radio two yesterday about poverty and deprivation in coastal towns and the  place highlighted was Skegness, 
      whether it is the most deprived I don’t know

        

    289. molly says:

      Albahala ,honestly I’m not picking on you but obviously having read your post about costs etc , would anyone else be interested in looking into this further ?

    290. Colin Duffy says:

      Most of the don`t knows I speak to want details of how we will function as an independent country, the white paper has to be a game changer. Yes the media will be overwhelmingly negative about it but the message will get through on the main part and that`s where the grass roots campaign comes into it`s own.
      We just have to remind folk that better together have the media onside, including the BBC. The British media are not to be trusted and the McCrone Report which most have not heard about is just proof

    291. CameronB says:

      molly
      I’d be up for a few quid, if that’s not stepping on Stu’s toes.

    292. Barontorc says:

      This crowd-funding concept is a real gamechanger. In your face billboarding and adverts on the buses and the underground and draped over buildings plus radio and tv adverts are all available – but, at what cost, when and how? If the MSM and BBC are totally hostile we need to get round them by other means. I’m certain there are very prominent actors, performers and communicators who would do work like this for free we just need some blue-sky thinking to get it going.

    293. Albalha says:

      @molly
      No problem I’ve been going on about it for a couple of weeks so happy if others are up for it to. I certainly am, happy to do it as I’ve looked into the costs, logistics.
      I will e mail Stuart and see what he thinks re doing it via this site if not I’m sure something else can be set up. Molly where are you geographically? Cameron B you’re in Dundee?

    294. Lanarkist says:

      Regards billboards, some cities are more or less wrapped up by Clearwater?(sp), a large multi national, especially the street light and bus stop signage.
      How about the network of local commercial and community radio stations, (Radio Clyde, Radio Forth, TayAm, Fm, Wave 102, Kingdom Fm, etc? Sponsor a local charity event and get a name check every time it is broadcast mentioning local events where Yes stands will be present. Lots of options.
      Lanarkist.

    295. Albalha says:

      @Lanarkist
      Absolutely though are YES Scotland not already doing that? ….. odd if they’re not, seems a perfect vehicle for a grassroots campaign.
      And radio advertising, even if you had to pay for it, is cheap.
      Anyway I am going to look into the options, costs etc. Stuart has kindly said he would happily publicise any initiative. Though anyone who’s keen to help out, particularly, at the early stage re website design etc let me know.
      E mail contact balharry1@yahoo.com
       
       

    296. CameronB says:

      @ Albalha
      I’m from Dundee but have lived in Edinburgh for a good while. I hardly recognise the place now when I visit my folks. Lots of change, mostly for the better (not that I considered it worse than any other place that I knew of at that time).
       
      Re. posters. I think a sustained “crowd funded” campaign is more than achievable, in terms of funding anyway.  Now, where are we going to come up with appropriate material? 🙂

      P.S. I assume you know what you are doing posting an e-mail address?

    297. Albalha says:

      @CameronB
      Thanks for the interest, I’ll keep you updated. What’s the e mail point? Is it that seriously unadvisable?

    298. CameronB says:

      I don’t know myself really, aren’t you kind of inviting the world to get in touch.
       
      I’d be keen for you to keep me informed, probably in Quarantine would be easiest. If things develop though, we’ll need to be sure of the e-mail host’s security. 😉

    299. Albalha says:

      @CameronB
      I posted the details in quarantine too. I’m thinking first of all of getting a domain name and so e mail accounts. I have a small business so can get the same hoster of that website to do it.
      My first thought is to do the Glasgow underground, and see. It’s not prohibitive for two weeks, the minimum you can do.
       
       

    300. CameronB says:

      Plenty of material to run a rolling fortnightly campaign with. Might even get a discount if were lucky or plan things properly. That’s if the boss is OK with it. 🙂

    301. Albalha says:

      @CameronB
      To be fair the fund raiser would have to be on a different site, though Stuart has said he’d let folk know about it, publicise it.
      There’s no doubt the more you buy the less the units cost is. Anyway I’ll price something up, look into domain names etc.
      Re advertising my e mail address I’m not being flooded so far!!



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