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Posted on April 24, 2013 by

Much as we like to mock Scottish Labour for their deep-seated terror of stating a firm policy position on any subject whatsoever (other than “SNP BAD”, of course), we have to give credit where it’s due. Last weekend, Johann Lamont finally comprehensively addressed a subject she’s been ducking since before this website even existed.

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Under the inquisitorial gaze of the BBC’s remorseless Brian Taylor, Lamont bit the bullet and laid out her position once and for all, in simple plain-speaking terms, on Britain’s nuclear deterrent. The BBC website is a little bit flaky with video, so we’ve transcribed the six-minute exchange for you below. Let that be an end to the matter.

————————————————————————————————–

BRIAN TAYLOR: Let me turn you finally to an issue on which we got many, many, many questions, because people seem to be puzzled. Do you support replacing Trident?

JOHANN LAMONT: Well, one of the things I have said – this is obviously a big question that people raise more generally – I’m very interested in the work that’s been done at a UK government level, to look at whether there is an alternative to that, and I think we should look at that report when it comes out. Because nobody, I mean, I can see why people would look at that and say to me ‘Well, you want to test the value of that spend and you want to test the value of that spend but somehow this over here can’t be looked at at all.’

So I apply the same criteria to that. I think that is really important. And I also think that we need to get into the more general debate about how we make sure our world is a safer, a safer place, and I have respect for people on all sides of this debate round Trident, but I do think that that report when it comes through will be a very, will give a very interesting information.

TAYLOR: The point is there, you’re saying the replacement might not be like-for-like for Trident, it might be another one. Do you believe in multilateral nuclear disarmament, or do you believe in scrapping Britain’s nuclear weapons programme?

LAMONT: I believe that what we need to do is, em, I suppose you could now term it as multilateral disarmament, that you work with other countries across the world to create a secure world.

TAYLOR: And meanwhile retain Britain’s nuclear arms?

LAMONT: Well, that is part of that discussion, that part of that debate, and I suppose where people think there may be a change is precisely because you’re then investing in renewal. So I want to look at, y’know, what’s the affordability of that, is there an alternative to that, because that might then aid the debate around multilateral, em, nuclear disarmament.

TAYLOR: But to be really clear, in the absence of any multilateral agreement for the scrapping of nuclear weapons more generally, you believe that Britain should retain a form of nuclear deterrent, whether that is Trident or whether that is a cheaper replacement?

LAMONT: Well, I don’t think these things are, are false, I think it’s almost like a false choice you present there. I think it’s part of a process that, how do you, I suppose the difference is between those who presume that we’ll be there forever, and those who want to move to make the world a safer place. That is the bigger debate.

TAYLOR: But you wouldn’t scrap it unilaterally? You would not scrap Britain’s deterrent unilaterally if you were in a power –  position – to do so?

LAMONT: I don’t think we CAN do that. I think, but what, I think some of this debate is almost like a… there’s a curious debate that by voting for independence you somehow could make that unilateral step. I’m not sure that’s true, you might move the problem, but I also think we need, again, to refresh that debate, which is about, actually where is the energy around, em, disarmament – and I know a lot of people like Des Browne, my colleague, is doing a lot of interesting work around this – is there an energy to recast that debate from the old ones, which I was very engaged in, uh, as a young woman, so, but I think now, actually –

TAYLOR: You would have been marching against Trident, wouldn’t you?

LAMONT: Yes, well –

TAYLOR: So why are you now in the vanguard supporting it?

LAMONT: Oh, I’m not in the vanguard of supporting it, that’s not true. What I’m saying is, you don’t, I suppose what I have learned, and what I consider now, is that you look at where you are now and where you get to where you want to be, and everything that drove me to march for peace was about how to make the world a safer place, and I think that debate can must be framed, not between those who want Trident to go and those who want it to stay, but how do we refresh and re-energise the debate round, multilateral, em, nuclear disarmament shouldn’t just be a place where you go to because you don’t want to deal with the current situation, it has to have active energy, and I think across the world we have leaders who are willing to do that.

TAYLOR: Trident was a policy you and the Labour Party in Scotland strongly opposed, the majority of the Scottish Parliament – including Labour – strongly oppose, and yet [it seems] you’re just saying it would be retained as honest negotiations continue.

LAMONT: Well, I’m, I’m not saying that, I think that it’s, I go back to the same point again, it’s about energy and driving the thing forward and changing the terms of the debate. I don’t think there is, em, anyone in, in Scotland, who, em… would want to close that debate down, we recognise the importance of Faslane to the economy locally, and we have people who are very strongly advocating that.

We understand the importance of feeling secure in the world, but I suppose my, I apply first principles like that, as to everything else, let’s test it against the evidence, and not let’s settle for, some of what the false debate around the independence debate, which would suggest that somehow we can wish Trident away. That is not, uh, the case.

TAYLOR: [Some people say] it ISN’T a false debate, Trident nuclear weapons in Scotland will stay if the ‘Better Together’ campaign wins. By implication reminding us that the SNP policy is to scrap Trident, and send it packing from Scotland’s shores.

LAMONT: Yes, and there is, and I recognise there are people who have come to the independence debate and will vote for Yes precisely for that, and I respect them for that. I think we can also, however, say that it’s not simply what we have now or the alternative through the SNP. How again do we create that change, and that debate, inside the United Kingdom, and that’s about challenging assumptions –

TAYLOR: To be clear, your position is no longer – if it ever was – your position is not one of unilateral nuclear disarmament, you are not there, you are not in that place?

LAMONT: What I think we need to do is have that debate across the world, and we have to, but the bigger challenge for me, where the debate now seems to lie is between those who say ‘Never change that now, it’s not possible’, we need to look at it further.

TAYLOR: But there might have to be some form of replacement for the deterrent that is currently based at Faslane? There might have to be a replacement?

LAMONT: Well, I want to see what the report says, because I think that people are gravely concerned about the cost of it, and I understand that in tough economic times, and I want to look at what that report says about actually how you can address that problem.

————————————————————————————————–

Let’s hear no more talk of evasiveness, readers. Frankly, anyone who’s read the above and still doesn’t have the faintest idea what Johann Lamont and Scottish Labour’s position on the British nuclear deterrent is must be some manner of idiot.

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    1. redcliffe62 says:

      It does sound like she cannot answer a question, and needs Paxman to quiz her so that a yes or no answer might be retrieved fom her orifice. Whichever one is operating at the time based on the above.

    2. Dan777A says:

      they want there to be a debate about it?
      but not a debate about wether we should keep it or not, a debate about wether having it makes the world a safer place by keeping it or not….which would determine wether we keep it or not????
      I’m confused why cant we just get rid of the bloody thing!
       

    3. BlueTiles says:

      For a split second when the post came up on Facebook I thought Labour in Scotland might have actually let a policy stance slip.
       

    4. Doug Daniel says:

      I feel like banging my head off the desk just now. Reading that was almost as painful as listening to her.
       
      “We need a debate, let’s have a debate, I want a debate…” JUST ANSWER THE BLOODY QUESTION!

    5. LeeMacD says:

      It’s like listening to a drain emptying.

    6. Henry Hooper says:

      Fucking hilarious…absolutely brilliant. It’s so funny it surely cant’ be true?

    7. Colin Laing says:

      I see in the NYT that there is suggestions that the USA is hinting to the UK to give up its nukes in favour of a stronger conventional force http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/23/world/europe/europes-shrinking-military-spending-under-scrutiny.html

    8. IainB says:

      reads like she’s on fence between her own old anti nuke feelings & the (UK) Labour policy on Trident — not sure which way to jump!

    9. Adrian B says:

      Im not reading all that crap from the Lamentable one – I would need a three hour walk to get my head straightened out.
       
      Kudos to the Rev though – boy you must need a rest for going through all that.
       
       
       
       

    10. An Duine Gruamach says:

      Every time she calls for debate – Trident, universalism, devolution – it’s on something that’s already been debated for many years.  When do you end the debate and declare that one side has one?

    11. ianbrotherhood says:

       
      Oh, FFS, that is just excruciating.
       
      She used to be a teacher? How did that dogsbody ever manage to teach anyone anything? 
       
      It’s hard not to feel sorry for some of the older Labour supporters, but then again, why aren’t they moving heaven and earth to get shot of these embarrassments and save what’s left of their party?
       
      Some of us thought the Millar/GMS interview last week was as bad as it could get – we were mistaken.

    12. Fergie35 says:

      The Brit media are generally very gentle with her, she is their great hope of ‘union’.
      See the Scotsman’s poll…. would Johann Lamont make a good First Minister? It attracted a 4 to 1 against on Monday, today it is 3 to 2 in favour, obviously a fair bit of interference by the ‘Scotsman’.

    13. amanat2014 says:

      I’ve listened to this a few times, i’ve read the transcript twice, and to honest with you i still don’t understand what the feck she’s talking about.
      Maybe if Brian had asked “If em that in the debate, to er to being there, what erm is the debate to SNP for that time for a debate which is coming to em the Labour party”  
      Then he might have had an answer.

    14. Jiggsbro says:

      Well, I want to see what the report says, because I’m not allowed to have an opinion until Ed tells me what it is.

    15. scotty says:

      emr..seems perfectly,um…clear.i suppose!

    16. muttley79 says:

      Rev Stu’s transcribing of the interview clearly shows that Lamont talks gibberish.  There is no clear structure to her answers.  She appears only to willing to fall back on cliches (such as “let’s have a debate” or “there is a report looking into this.”  I have to say that SLAB appear paralysed in terms of giving any answers to questions on what they actually believe in.  If you take away the inevitable mention of the SNP then you are left with nothing.  There is a massive void in SLAB.  Lamont looks like she is about to start crying in that photo at the top.  I think it is safe to say that the Labour Party in Scotland, and the rest of the UK, are having a massive identity crisis at the moment.     

    17. LeeMacD says:

      If you actually study her torturous use of language you can’t get the feedback loop out of your head. You can just go on and on forever building nonsensical sentences on the foundations of a few key words.
       
      I love how, at one point, she uses the word ‘between’ but only gives one option.
       
      She is a riddle wrapped in misery inside an enema.

    18. Seasick Dave says:

      A world debate eh?
       
      Got a time and venue, Johann?
       

    19. Seasick Dave says:

      Lee
       
      Do you mean enema or enigma? 🙂

    20. LeeMacD says:

      I’m suggesting that we can expect more shite.

    21. pa_broon74 says:

      The woman is talking gibberish, was she even in the same room as Taylor? She sure-as-shit wasn’t answering the questions he seemed to be asking.
       
      I might be jumping to conclusions, but I get the impression Johann prefers to have a debate about the choices as opposed to actually choosing one.

    22. Inbhir Anainn says:

      Call me an idiot then Rev. as i have not an earthly clue what this women is rabbiting on about.

    23. John Lyons says:

      The great thing about the Bitters wanting debate is every time they’re offered one they turn it down. Cameron wont debate with Salmond, McDougal wont debate with Jenkins and so on. The only debate Lamont should be involved in is the one she has every morning with herself on the topic of whether or not she should chuck it.
       
      And she even manages to lose that one!

    24. Bill C says:

      Johann Lamont is a national embarrassment.

    25. Craig M says:

      Doug Daniel
      Do you want a politician to represent you that actually can make a decision or do you want Johann Lamont?
      The trouble with Johann is that she is so completely a London puppet, including the growing nose, that unless London tells her unambiguously what to say, then you’ll get the incoherent ramblings that we have come to expect.
      Come on Labour in Scotland! Just how long are you going to put up with this nonsense. It’s pathetic. It’s embarassing. Your so called leader in Scotland appears to have no solid position on almost any and every subject. You are being made to look fools. You are being tarred with the same brush. Every Labour activist will be either looked on with derision or laughed at. Is that really where you want to be? You do need to start looking at yourselves and asking some very searching questions. Just what do stand for? Whom do you represent? And what is the Big Idea?

    26. John Lyons says:

      And yet, as discussed in another coment with DWM42, she wins no votes simply on the premise that some people are terrified we could vote yes in 2014 and vote Labour in 2016 putting her on the world stage as our representative!
       

    27. Jeannie says:

      I don’t know why Johann Lamont keeps calling for a debate.  Her contributions so far make me wonder what on earth she could possibly bring to a debate.  She claimed that Labour lost the election because people had stopped listening to them.  Has it occurred to her that one of the problems was, that we couldn’t actually understand what on earth she was talking about?  The above interview on Trident is a prime example – I haven’t a clue what she means.
       
      I would suggest that Ms. Lamont, as a former English teacher, take some advice from Mark Twain – “It’s better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt”.  Of course, the problem with this course of action is that Anas Sarwar would have to do the talking for her and………you see where I’m going with that?
       

    28. Doug Daniel says:

      I can only assume Johann Lamont has seen this clip from Knowing Me Knowing You With Alan Partridge episode 5 and thought it was a training video for aspiring politicians, rather than a piss-take.
       
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYWXJEpUIvc
       
      For “we need a debate” and “there’s a report coming out”, replace with “there’s a white paper coming out, which should end all discussion”.
       
      She is an absolute moron.

    29. Training Day says:

      “riverrun, past Eve and Adam’s, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs”

      See that Finnegan’s Wake, Johann?  That’s you, that is. 

    30. Gordon Ross says:

      Bawheid Lamont is unable to speak meaningful words, unless pre-programmed by Milliband. I wonder how this illiterate characature of a wummin ever got to lead llabour. Did she take a wrong turn when looking for a labour and birthing ward? Jeeez!

    31. muttley79 says:

      I’m very interested in the work that’s been done at a UK government level, to look at whether there is an alternative to that, and I think we should at that report when it comes out. 
      I presume she means ‘look’ at that report?
       
      I suppose you could now term it as multilateral disarmament, that you work with other countries across the world to create a secure world.
       
      A leader of a major political party stating the bleeding obvious.  This is George W. Bush stuff.  In fact it is almost all of his type of comment from start to finish.
       
      there’s a curious debate that by voting for independence you somehow could make that unilateral step.
      It would be a unilateral step for Scotland.  It is not a curious debate, it is a curious argument (thinking to much of debates again?).  If there is a Yes vote there will be unilateral nuclear disarmament in Scotland.

    32. YesYesYes says:

      The thing that I find most disturbing of all about this is that, as party ‘leader’, she’s had almost eighteen months to be briefed on this critically important policy issue. Eighteen months of being coached by party aides to field questions from the press on this issue. Eighteen months to rehearse her answers on this issue. Yet here, she provides evidence, for anyone who still needs it, that even if Lamont had eighteen years to think about it, she still couldn’t provide a coherent answer to this question.

    33. Geoff Huijer says:

      I still refuse to believe that this is the leader of ‘Scottish’ Labour.
      They simply cannot be that bad; surely?
      It is obviously just some we wumman out doing her
      shopping (note: not ‘weekly shop’) who has been
      accosted and dragged into the studio.
       

    34. Albert Herring says:

      @Training Day
       
      I’m sure if John cage were alive today he’d jump at the chance of doing one of his mesostics on Johann’s ramblings.

      http://www.themodernword.com/joyce/music/cage_roaratorio.html

    35. Albert Herring says:

      C’mon Rev
      It was bad enough when Ewan McColm was calling us idiots – now you’re doing it too 🙁

    36. muttley79 says:

      @Inbhir
       
      Call me an idiot then Rev. as i have not an earthly clue what this women is rabbiting on about.
       
      I have to agree with that.  It is a rambling, incoherent mess from Lamont.  The only reason I know she is against getting rid of Trident is because the SNP is in favour of scrapping it, and she just does not have the confidence to deviate an inch from the line she gets from London.

    37. YesYesYes says:

      Rev, I think you should send this transcript to ‘Scottish’ Labour’s ‘Truth’ Team. They’d know what to do with it.

    38. Dcanmore says:

      I’ve come to the conclusion that Johann Lamont does NOT aspire to be First Minister of the Scottish Parliament, but rather a co-conspirator in its downfall.

    39. Training Day says:

      You cavillers on here should listen to Siobhan McMahon MSP.. it will end any ‘debate’ without the need for a ‘report’..
       
      http://siobhanmcmahon.org/2011/11/10/why-im-supporting-johann-lamont-for-labour-leader/
       
      A ‘natural communicator’!

    40. alasdair says:

      I got half way through the transcript and thought, “nope, the rev is pulling our collective legs.  No-one who is the ‘leader’ of a major political party can be this verbally illiterate.”  So I went off and listened to the interview directly, and do you know what, it’s worse than is represented here.  The women is utterly hopeless.

    41. heraldnomore says:

      just what Scotland needs – pure quality n’at, pure dead brilliant
       
      Shit, I despair.  And people vote for that.

    42. alasdair says:

      I suppose she can’t support unilateral disarmament since the only way it can be achieved in Scotland is via a YES vote … that would leave her on a sticky wicket, so-to-speak.

    43. annie says:

      You can bet the Labour supporters are all telling each other how good she was in that interview – how do you get through to people like that.

    44. Michael Cooper says:

      That was tough going trying to read that, I must be an “idiot”, I did not understand a word she said, I don’t normally anyway. It’s time she went back to school to learn how to speak English clearly.

    45. Rolf says:

      Surely this can’t be real? Oh, wait, it is. The woman is beyond satire. She has a brass neck to spend her whole time demanding answers of the SNP/Yes and being so comprehensively unable to provide any of her own. She’s barely fit to be an MSP let alone FM.

    46. JuanBonnets says:

      Hat off to you Rev Stu, transcribing that exchange must have been exceedingly painful. After reading it again I’m still not convinced that it wasn’t actually a BBC Scotlandshire article – and that’s having watched the original video. Surely there is no way she is a serious political leader who actually believes she has some credibility as a potential First Minister, it all has to be an elaborate practical joke. I despair at the mockery Lamont (and Davidson and Rennie) are making of our Parliament, and our democracy.

    47. Jiggsbro says:

      Shit, I despair.  And people vote for that.
       
      I voted for her to lead the party. And I’m very pleased with the result.

    48. Dauvit says:

      Frankly, anyone who’s read the above and still doesn’t have the faintest idea what Johann Lamont and Scottish Labour’s position on the British nuclear deterrent is must be some manner of idiot.
       
      I have stopped laughing now, and confess to being some manner of idiot – a giggling one at that.
       
      Can’t wait for the report, and if she’s consistent in this policy area as with others, her line will be to kick it in to the long grass with a “commission” tag to further inform the internal Scottish Labour debate. 
       
       

    49. Ron Burgundy says:

      Can you imagine the reaction of Reporting Scotland, the Scotsman, Brewer and Magnus Gardham if Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon, Dennis Canavan or Blair Jenkins came out with an interview like that  —  they would be butchered.
      Shameful, incoherent, embarassing ramblings caused by the stress of a troubled conscience. Lamont knows that she is selling her soul to support a London Labour policy on Trident which is morally wicked and economically ruinous in the eyes of almost all Scots.
      This kind of stuff that must eat away at the character of any human being when they feel they have to say things which they know in their heart to be wrong.
      I wonder if Lamont has many 4 o’clock in the morning moments waking up, cannot sleep, switching on the PC, looking at Wings ( you never know ) to see what the cybernats are doing and reading that transcription by the Rev. I would feel utterly humiliated and reduced. That by my connection to SLAB, my election as SLAB leader had forced me into a position where I had to make that pig’s breakfast of a set of statements. The poor woman is a national laughing stock.

    50. scaredycat says:

      O/T. I don’t understand a lot of this and I have no wish to start subscribing to moneyweek magazine (or to persuade anyone else to do so). I cannot vouch for its’ accuracy, but it scared the bejeezus out of me, and provides another very good reason to vote Yes in 2014. Just hope it doesn’t all go to hell before then!
      http://info.moneyweek.com/urgent-bulletins/the-end-of-britain?
       

    51. muttley79 says:

      This is the speech that Training Day was referring to:
       
      ‘On Monday I attended the official launch of Johann Lamont MSP’s campaign to be elected as the next leader of Labour in Scotland.
      I am delighted to say that the launch, held at Stirling University, was a great success: Johann spoke with passion and eloquence, and her speech was well received by the many MSPs, MPs, Union officials and party members who turned out to support her.
      During her speech and the question and answer session that followed, Johann outlined her vision for Labour over the next few years and, whilst she did not shirk the many challenges that face us, both as a party and as a country, her message was one of hope; hope of what we can achieve if we unite in our commitment to make Scotland a fairer and more equal society:
      “I believe we must change as a party if we are to once more earn the right to serve Scotland.
      We must listen and learn, show humility and seek again to talk for and to people’s ambitions and concerns.
      We must rediscover our story of a party created out of a vision for a fair society, sustained by our aspiration to serve all of Scotland.
      In that way, in embracing change, we seek the opportunity to represent the people of Scotland, refreshed and renewed and ready to serve.”
      Having known Johann for several years, I can testify to her passion for politics and her commitment to social justice. Since becoming an MSP she has worked tirelessly in service of the causes she believes in, and she has the knowledge, the strength and the talent to achieve her aims.
      Johann spent many more years as a teacher than she has as an MSP, and this experiennce has and will continue to serve her well. She is well known as a champion of single parents and carers, and is a natural communicator with a gift for empathy and understanding.’
       

    52. dmw42 says:

      So it’s true, Brian Taylor has stolen Arthur Dent’s babel fish.
       
      It’s the only explanation I can come up with for him carrying on with the ‘interview’.
       
      Of course, I didn’t watch it so I guess she could’ve been ‘signing’, but for the blind, obviously.

    53. panda paws says:

      Well let me add my stupidity to Muttleys and Inbhirs because I’ve not a clue what she’s on about either. She used to be a teacher, do any of her former students read this blog? (I could be unkind and ask if any of her former students can read but that is a bit harsh!) If so, what was she like as a teacher? Because we know what she is like a politican…..

    54. Jeannie says:

      @alasdair
      I suppose she can’t support unilateral disarmament since the only way it can be achieved in Scotland is via a YES vote … that would leave her on a sticky wicket, so-to-speak.
       
      How right you are, Alasdair.  Since Labour UK wants to keep Trident, she’d have to be agreeing, not only with independence but with SNP policy and we all know she’s not allowed to do that.
       
       

    55. GP Walrus says:

      I actually feel very sorry for Johann Lamont. She is so completely afraid to make any policy commitment on anything lest she antagonise one faction or another on her own side. On an issue like Trident, which she campaigned against in her early career, here she is now, “leading her party” and unable to make any coherent policy commitment to do anything about it, because she’s not allowed to by London.
      How deeply deeply sad. It must be soul destroying. No-one should have to keep this up.

    56. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      Johann Lamont makes G W Bush look like an intellectual.
       
      Embarrassing example of Scottish education, pupil and teacher.

    57. Jim Mitchell says:

      Eh! I bet that none of those folk who go on TV to sign for the deaf would have liked to have been handling this one!

    58. Cyborg-nat says:

      “The clear blue waters of the Clyde.”
      Rev, that was more like ,”Roamin in the gloamin”

    59. southernscot says:

      is Tattie Scones missing from the list?
       http://tattie-scones.blogspot.co.uk/

    60. YesYesYes says:

      On the morning of September 19th, after a Yes vote, we should have a whip round to raise funds to build a commemorative urinal in honour of Johann Lamont. That would be a fitting monument to Johann’s brief, piss-taking tenure as ‘leader’ of the ‘Scottish’ Labour Party.

    61. Cyborg-nat says:

      Jim Mitchell, I am profoundly deaf use an implant (hence the Cyborg) and  had I tried to listen to her , I would have been contacting Crosshouse telling them my implant was malfunctioning.
      (or having a debate about it or asking for a report from Crosshouse so we could have a debate about it.)
       

    62. southernscot says:

      oops wrong thread too many tabs open.

    63. benarmine says:

      gasps, shakes head

    64. douglas clark says:

      That is pretty poor stuff. I fear that Johann Lamont is in the next to impossible position of having been promoted well above her competency level. She looks – to me at least – increasingly ill at ease with representing policies she clearly is either clueless about or are contrary to her beliefs. She demeans herself by pretending otherwise.
       
      Her clear desire to push everything away, via committees, shows us a hollow and useless politician. She’ll not have a view on anything unless it it is endorsed by Milliband’s think tanks. Just out of curiosity, have they come up with anything whatsoever?
       
      Maybe retain the bedroom tax, Trident, ATOS, PFI and other contrary things. If a committee recommends that then Johann Lamont will find it in her soul to argue night is day and black is white. Quite a cypher, not a person with their own beliefs.
       
      Totally sad, really. Reminds me somewhat of Malcolm Rifkind, another politician who would argue till the cows came home and who completely lacked any obvious principles.

      We don’t need people like that in politics.

    65. Heather McLean says:

      hahahaha! I thought for a moment I was reading something from BBC Scotlandshire but that is actually a real transcript of Johann Lamonts response in an interview! I never cease to be amazed at her ability to say so many words and yet somehow manage to say absolutely NOTHING! All credit to the Rev, who obviously listened to the interview in full in order to spare us listening to her drone on. You deserve a medal!

    66. Westie7 says:

      Yeah-But, No-But, Yeah-But, No-But, Yeah-But
      This should drive over the Labour core vote then reverse over it again… but for some reason it won’t. 

    67. benarmine says:

      Here, what happened to Johann Lamont that commented on here? I miss her.

    68. LeeMacD says:

      I preferred the interview with Lamont last Thursday(?) where she appeared to be stroking a tiny, invisible white cat. If the working group reports back and her plan becomes clearer, perhaps, we should be afraid. Mwahahahaahhaha.

    69. Craig M says:

      Ron Burgundy
      And by association all labour activists are now a laughing stock. I wonder what Malcolm Chisholm thinks of this? We should ask him.

    70. Iain More says:

      Comical!

    71. robbie says:

       
      YesYesYes.
      She,s only taking the piss out of her few remaining supporters, most folk have realized what an utterly clueless bitter little selfseeking london puppet she is.
      Labour are scrapping under the barrel if this wee thicko is the best they can find to lead their Northern branch sheep.
       
      To think this thing was once employed educating Scots children as a teacher is frightening.

    72. muttley79 says:

      There is no doubt that Lamont is an atrocity of a leader.  An Apocalypse Now one at that.

    73. fizzinghumanbomb says:

      ron burgundy, there’s a name for the psychological condition you describe; cognitive dissonance. the strain of holding two conflicting beliefs is highly damaging, and can lead to total shutdown. reading the above, i reckon johann lamont is due to blow at 9.15am next tuesday.

    74. mealer says:

      Och,come on now.You’re intelligent guys on here.Read it again.And again.Then pen through all the incoherence and gibberish.You’re left with “I dont know”.And I think that is her public position on Trident.She used to be committed to unilateral disarmament,but now that her party has adopted Tory policy she has changed her public position to fit in.But she’s struggling with herself.She DOESNT KNOW whether to follow her moral compass or to follow the leader of the London Tories.SAD.

    75. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

       Her interview translates as, ah believe in whatever I’m telt tae say by London. 

    76. handclapping says:

      The body language is – do not trust the words that are going to come from my mouth -. A deeply unhappy lady.
      @LeeMacD Shurely if its an enema its a widdle?

    77. patronsaintofcats says:

      That must have been absolute torture to transcribe.  Thanks for doing it though, no way I could watch that video without serious effect on my blood pressure and I’m under orders to take it easy!

    78. velofello says:

      Rev Stu, a glossary of Labour key words might help. Mags Curran, Lamont, Sarwar, Murphy, all use them, plus of course the three finger sincerity – thumb, index and middle- pose.
      Advice to Lamont; pack it in. You just don’t cut it honey.
      @ Doug Daniel, where on earth did you find the Partridge clip? Mega amusing.
       

    79. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I presume she means ‘look’ at that report?”

      Sorry, that one’s my fault. Picking through Johann’s inarticulate gibberish is so painful, having to type out sentences you know make no sense in English, that sometimes your brain just fritzes out.

    80. YesYesYes says:

      For those who haven’t had enough, more gibberish here:
       
      http://www.bettertogether.net/blog/entry/scots-on-what-separation-could-mean-for-your-savings-pension-and-mortgage
       
      In this video, ‘Stephen from Edinburgh’ bears an uncanny resemblance to this guy (spooky):
       
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2lSL_3mUCg

    81. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “In this video, ‘Stephen from Edinburgh’ bears an uncanny resemblance to this guy (spooky):”

      Not as much resemblance as he bears to this guy:

      https://twitter.com/PoorgeoisSteve

    82. Amanayeman says:

      So, Professor Unwin lives on in the body (OOer I didn’t like writing that) of er, um, as it were in a… look many… um, want… you know a..  debate, oh aye,  Lament or do I mean dirge
      Anurra eejit

    83. Embradon says:

      Who could possibly say JoLa is not fit to be FM after reading such an erudite and concise exposition of policy?

    84. YesYesYes says:

      Rev, I hope the ‘Truth’ Team is going to spring into action on this. This won’t do. Better Together trying to pass off Labour Party members as ordinary punters. Surely not.
       
      By the way, have you listened to the Better Together video? It looks as if Johann Lamont’s incoherent ramblings are becoming contagious in ‘Scottish’ Labour. This is what Alasdair Darling says on the video:
       
      “We want to hear from people around the country. And here we are people concerned about their mortgages about their savings, about their pensions”.
       
      Maybe they both use the same speech therapist? 

    85. James Westland says:

      “Do you support replacing Trident?”  A 5 word question.
      Her answer – 180 words,  when a simple “yes” or “no” would have done.
      Talk about talkin’ pish – Her urethra is clearly plumbed straight to her larynx…..

    86. Seasick Dave says:

      Alasdair also sez:
       
      We might have to have our own currency, or something mad like that.
       
      WTF?
       
      BTW, what has he done to his coupon? It looks like he has been too close to the fire.
       
       

    87. YesYesYes says:

      Oops. Alistair Darling.

    88. creag an tuirc says:

      @Seasick Dave
      Aye, all those independent countries that done a runner from the British Empire are mad to use their own currencies, mad I tells ye.

    89. Tinyzeitgeist says:

      Lamont states “….there’s a curious debate that by voting for independence you somehow could make that unilateral step. I’m not sure that’s true, you might move the problem….”
       
      As far as I can see this is the only utterance she makes that is actually correct, Yes we can move the problem, move it out of Scotland!

    90. YesYesYes says:

      My 15 year-old son has just explained to me what ‘Rick-rolling’ is. Apologies to everyone. Middle-aged ignorance and all that.

    91. Dee says:

      Rev,.. Could you organise an artist to put together sketches of Lamont and Co, in a re make of “The Steamie” If put together with the right script ,I think we could be onto a winner.  West End , Broadway, who knows …you could make it a weekly series.  

    92. scotty says:

      @Dee you should see if the crankies would be interested,i hear they are bloody great at pantomime!

    93. Boorach says:

      o/t but the bitterthegither mob are going to be on Tain High St on Saturday from 10:30. Anyone fancy coming along to ask them
       how they feel about being funded by blood money?
      Why it’s acceptable to accept donations of over £500.00 from doners not resident in Scotland?
      how they feel about being funded by tories in the SE of England?
      their views on censorship (myths debunked)?
       
      other questions gratefully received!

    94. Castle Rock says:

      Never, ever, have I read so much complete and utter shite.
       
      My head now hurts big time.
       
      I’ll never forgive you Stuart for making me read that.
       

    95. McHaggis says:

       
      words completely fail me how anyone so cataclysmically stupid is a leader of a political party in Scotland. She has no grasp of the English language at all and her delivery is just stuttering mumblings, interjected with occassional buzzwords her advisors obviously have to keep drumming in to her. She is totally and utterly inept.

    96. cynicalHighlander says:

      I am convinced that the question confused her.
       
      http://www.peelengineering.co.uk/images/trident_01.png

    97. Jimbo says:

      Isn’t there some kind of law about blatantly lying to voters?
       
      Just received this Email from Better Together:
       
      Dear James,
      This week there has been more confusion from the nationalists on the details of what independence would actually mean.
       
      In all the chaos it can be difficult to follow what the policy of the SNP actually is. So, what have we learned this week?
      First, no nationalist can guarantee that Scotland would keep the pound if we leave the UK.
      Why? Because creating new complex Eurozone-style arrangements isn’t just a decision for an independent Scotland. The rest of the UK, a country we would just have walked away from, would have to agree to create a complicated new Eurozone system just so that we could use a currency they already had.  Yesterday, the UK Chancellor said that he thought it was unlikely that the rest of the UK would agree to do that.
      Second, Scotland cannot just use the pound without agreement of the rest of the UK. Why? Because this would leave Scots left without the protection of a central bank: no insurance for our mortgages, our savings, or our pensions.
      So, the only options left open to the nationalists is to join the Euro or set up a separate currency.  Options that make little sense in the middle of a Eurozone and international banking crisis.
      Watch what Scots have to say about the huge gamble Alex Salmond wants us to take with our money.
      Keeping the pound is important for jobs, for keeping interest rates low. The pound offers Scots security in an uncertain world. But the only way to guarantee that Scotland keeps the UK pound is to vote to stay in the UK.
      What is keeping the pound worth to you?
      Our campaign relies on the donations of from people like you who support Scotland staying as part of the UK. Over ten thousand supporters like you have contributed small donations to the campaign. Will you join them?
      Click here to make a secure online donation to the Better Together campaign.
      Anything you can afford to give, however small, will help us to win the referendum.
      Best wishes,
      Alistair Darling
      Rt Hon Alistair Darling MPChair, Better Together
      P.S. every weekend hundreds of activists are out on the streets campaigning for Better Together. Will you join us? You can find events near you here

    98. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “interjected with occassional buzzwords her advisors obviously have to keep drumming in to her”

      I love the idea that Johann’s normal conversation features phrases like “re-energise the debate”.

    99. CameronB says:

      Well done Rev., that’s a lot of hot air to transcribe to eventually, in a round about sort of manner, you know, get around to saying absolutely nothing. Possibly.

      Johann is making it increasingly obvious that she is stuck between a rock and a hard place. Those being her principles and her pragmatic ambition. Either that or she is truly lamentable and totally unsuited to a managerial role, let alone become Scotland’s FM.
       
      Given Johann’s ambition to become FM, I thought this blast from the past might give you a giggle . I know Johann only aspires to rum a Scottish Parliament with the powers and responsibilities of a local council come tax collector, but I still think it might be kind of relevant. Think about it, Lamentable is a functionary of the British state’s Loyal opposition. For those in a hurry, the opposition must remain loyal to the source of the government’s power, and that ain’t here folks. Form Yes Minster 1984 Christmas Special.
       

       
      Vote Yes in 2014.

    100. Arbroath1320 says:

      Thanks for all the hard work you put in to this piece Stu. I think you deserve a long rest to recover, I’d suggest the DARKENED room myself but then again I’m biased! 😆
       
      Having read her answers, can I really call them answers I’m not entirely convinced yet. I can now say without any shadow of doubt that Lamont’s stance on Trident/nuclear missiles is…..erm…….maybe;s AYE……maybe’s NAW! 😆
       
      Glad she was able to clear this question up for us all. 😆
       
       

    101. YesYesYes says:

      I love the way that, in Better Together’s new video, Darling spits out the word ‘Eurozone’ as some kind of pejorative term. Anyone would think that the Labour Party was a model of consistency on Europe and the euro. Either that, or Labour is assuming that we’re all so dumb that we don’t remember how typical the following article was on Labour’s position little more than a decade ago:
       
       http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/1701014.stm

    102. CameronB says:

      Sorry, just meant to post the link, which I had forgotten to include and almost ran out of time, and so got myself in a right  fankle. Anyway, there is a longer version of the clip, which doesn’t cut before the punch line.

    103. douglas clark says:

      Cameron B,
       
      Thanks for that!
      It reminds me when Tom Leher gave up satire after Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. When reality is that screwed up…….

    104. EdinScot says:

      Not had time to read all the comments so apologies if already been said.  Im actually finding this gobbledegook type speak from Lamont really quite scary.  I mean she has had goodness knows how long as leader, one and a half years i think and she still cant spit out an answer or give us a coherent sensible policy.  She and her slab counterparts are that beholden to London that they’d rather tie theirselves in knots in full public view than rescue any semblance of credibilty left. Its really embarrasing and cringeworthy stuff and by no ones stretch of the imagination does this further her claim to be FM material no matter  the SOS managements’ attempts to manufacture their poll in favour of her.  She should give up the ghost.
       

    105. Morag says:

      Jeez Louise, I lost the will to live about half way through that.

      Johann, it’s OK to change your mind.  A straightforward statement that you’ve grown up a lot and reconsidered your position since you were a wee lassie is nothing to be ashamed of.  A simple explanation of why you now believe that unilateral nuclear disarmament is not the best option for Britain or Scotland would be courageous and might get you Brownie points.  This waffle is intolerable.  Who did you used to teach and are they out of rehab yet?

      One bright spot in all this is that all Alex Salmond has to do is come on TV and deliver a couple of sentences, and the brain starts offering up prayers of thanks for its sanity.  Come to think of it, he’s not on TV much.  He’s FM.  Why the hell isn’t he?

    106. TYRAN says:

      Waltz with me D-D-D-Darling Darling Darling. Does the man walk around in a nappy?

    107. CameronB says:

      There is a cure for heroin addiction use in Thailand, that involves a period of ingesting toxic substances and copious vomiting. Perhaps Johann is our version of this style of aversion therapy? Have Yes really got agents of influence everywhere? 🙂

    108. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Isn’t there some kind of law about blatantly lying to voters?”

      No.

      http://wingsoverscotland.com/how-politicians-are-licenced-to-lie/

    109. tartanpigsy says:

      Stuart,
       Without reading all the posts can I just say what a heartless sort you must be, can you not be prosecuted under the “cruelty to complete fuckwits” legislation that must surely exist to protect people like Johann Lamont, I mean alright putting the video up but a transcript ! where everyone can dissect the total mince spouted is TOO cruel and renders you open to allegations of psychological abuse of the ‘lesser thoughtout unionist’
      Attention grabbed ? Glasgow, 12:30, 18th May, Second Illuminate the Debate rally.
      Be there, or get someone to march in your place. Lets hold the MSM to account. Lets make it big http://www.bard2014.com

    110. mealer says:

      Ms Lamont has lost any credibility she ever had.What about her dignity ? Where are her family and friends ? What about her colleagues ? In the interests of common decency,will someone please stop this ?

    111. Seasick Dave says:

      The BBC are like a life support system for the poor woman.

    112. muttley79 says:

      @Morag
       
      One bright spot in all this is that all Alex Salmond has to do is come on TV and deliver a couple of sentences, and the brain starts offering up prayers of thanks for its sanity.  Come to think of it, he’s not on TV much.  He’s FM.  Why the hell isn’t he?
       
      Pravada and the other MSM.  Salmond is very rarely on BBC Scotland, apart from his conferences speeches.  Sometimes he does an interview with Sunday politics the day after his conference speech.  Other than that he is rarely on TV, either doing interviews, or responding to the media.  FMQs is on the radio, but is not live on BBC TV.  The answer why he is not on TV a lot is because they know he is a major asset to the independence campaign.       
       

    113. scottish_skier says:

      Labour getting stressed over their poor polling.
      http://www.ipsos-mori.com/newsevents/latestnews/1379/Accusations-by-Labour-List.aspx
      MORI not happy with Labour accusing them of bias.
       

    114. Gayle says:

      She would make a great drinking game. Every time she says “debate” you have a shot. 

    115. Vambomarbeleye says:

      She should be sat in a corner with her knickers on her head, a pencil up each nostril mumbeling. Wibel wibel.

    116. scottish_skier says:

      Interest in YesScotland continues to run at ~1.8x that for BT according to Facebook. Very consistent.

    117. Morag says:

      Muttley 79:
      He got a couple of sentences in yesterday.  Literally, I gasped in relief.  A politician capable of speaking in joined-up sentences.  Someone with affability and charisma and credibility – despite his rather unprepossessing appearance.

      After too much exposure to blog comments about Dear Leader and Jowly Eck and Salmond being smug, smarmy, wily, and so on, about fascism and a one-party state, I was reminded of what the man is actually like.  I think you’re right.  He comes over well, and giving him the exposure the FM should normally get would take all the heat out of the online “demonise Salmond” campaign.

    118. Morag says:

      Scottish Skier said:
      Labour getting stressed over their poor polling.
      http://www.ipsos-mori.com/newsevents/latestnews/1379/Accusations-by-Labour-List.aspx
      MORI not happy with Labour accusing them of bias.
       
      Ouch.  That will leave a mark.

    119. muttley79 says:

      @Morag
       
      I never really paid close attention to Scottish politics until the last few years, although I have been interested in it for ages.  What I have found most noticeable in the last few years is the evident links and self interest between BBC Scotland and the Labour Party in Scotland.  I suppose since the 1980s the Tories have been toxic in Scotland, so there is less reason for ties between it and BBC Scotland.  I think one of the features of Scottish politics is the role the BBC plays in it.  I now believe they have played a major part in the conditioning process, whereby the electorate here are ‘encouraged’ to view Scotland’s political affairs being largely controlled by another Parliament as normal, whereas in European terms it is of course the exact opposite.     

    120. Yesitis says:

      Scottish_Skier
      “Interest in YesScotland continues to run at ~1.8x that for BT according to Facebook. Very consistent.”
       
      Indeed. In fact Yes Scotland were about to pull out in front and open up a more-than-decent, slow and steady 5,000 ‘Likes’ lead over Better Together, until Sunday (which just happened to correspond with the end of a very dismal Labour Party Conference in Inverness), when the ‘Likes’ started to appear like midgies on the Better Together Facebook page at more than a thousand a day.
      The result of those abnormally high 5000 or so ‘Likes’ since Sunday, means BT only 1000 behind now.
      Strange. Probably manipulated in some way. Certainly odd.

    121. Tamson says:

      The Labour Party should start bagging up that stuff and flogging it around allotments. I’ve got a cabbage patch that could do with some top-quality bull***t.

    122. scottish_skier says:

      @Yesitis
      Likes can be manipulated with ease if you have the money/time (both ‘legitimately’ and illegally by facebook rules, i.e. buying likes). Stats show with little doubt this is being done by one side of the campaign. I’ll let you work out which. Suffice to say that a normal minimum baseline of 50 likes/day is crap when your competitor’s minimum is ~250.
      ‘People talking about this page’ – a far better measure of interest – is effectively impossible to manipulate (look it up and you’ll see why). On average 64% of those ‘talking’ on FB about the two campaigns are talking about Yes.

    123. Albert Herring says:

      @Yesitis
       
      It’s very easy to buy Facebook likes, not that such a popular campaign as Better Together would need to stoop so low.

    124. Daisy says:

      Fucking clueless
       
      Clearly the best bit of her ran down the crack of her mother’s arse.

    125. Yesitis says:

      Scottish_Skier
      I`ll be upfront with you and say that I do not have a Facebook account, and never have. I peaked with MySpace back in 2006 🙂
      But you know how easy it is to just peruse a Facebook main page, especially if you are just checking out ‘Likes’ or, as you mentioned, the ‘Talking’ numbers.
      I was aware of Better Together (especially in the week before the Labour conference) ‘Likes’ trickling in at around 12 to a (not common) maximum of 200 a day. So, to find nearly 5000 over a course of less than four days is strange, very strange.
       
      Outside of the main Yes Scotland/ Better Together pages, a more accurate picture can be gained by the alternative Facebook pages “Yes to an independent Scotland” and “Vote No to Scottish independence and protect the union”, respectively at 30, 738 and 23, 899.
       
      Albert Herring
      Yes, I`ve heard you can buy Facebook Likes. Surely not, though. Surely?
       

    126. CameronB says:

      Just in case there is someone out there being driven mad looking for a clip with the punch line, that was it. My WIFI can be flaky sometimes.

    127. Morag says:

      Oh well, it’s RevStu’s blog, but I don’t think that’s helpful.

      (That was aimed at Daisy, in case anyone is confused.)

    128. Marian says:

      Once again Johann Lamont would win a Gold medal at the “talking but not saying anything Olympics” (if there was one).

    129. robbie says:

      I hope she doesn’t resort to the tactics of Luis Suarez.
      Crocodile Lamont from the swamp, will get ,ya.

    130. scottish_skier says:

      Yestitis. I`ll be upfront with you and say that I do not have a Facebook
      Kudos
      I use Mrs SS’s if I need an account for something.
      😉

    131. CM says:

      O/T, but — proof indeed the London-centric BBC see Scotland as a “county”.
      http://i38.tinypic.com/iz8dox.jpg
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-22288676

    132. annie says:

      Boorach: can’t beleve BT are within reach at Tain this week and  am back working for next five nights. 

    133. Soulcat says:

      First comment! Hey all. Been a fan of site since the start, checking in every day and promoting it when I can. Thanks Stu for some of the best blogs I’ve read and forever grateful for the work you put in. 
      I was unfortunate enough to suffer the Lamentable One as my Higher English teacher. The transcript above shows just why I and many others failed our exams! In the class her language skills were as good as they are in interviews now. Spewing incoherent garbage every time she opens her gob! How she got to the position shes in now is beyond me. 
       

    134. Dramfineday says:

      I think a modified Olsen Johnson speech from Blazing Saddles just about covers it:
      “Now who can argue with that? I think we’re all indebted to Johann for clearly stating what needed to be said. I’m particulary glad that these lovely children were here today to hear that speech. Not only was it authentic  new labour gibberish, it expressed a courage little seen in this day and age.”
       
       

    135. Bobby Mckail says:

      So this is what i took from that gibberish and gobbledegook.
      She is for Multilateral disarmament. Which means She is for Nuclear weapons on the Clyde (Obviously). She worried about Jobs losses. Futhermore she want’s to have lots of debates around the world with Governments who are also for multilateral disarmament.  Who knew eh!
       
      Only in your head Johann.

    136. Jim Mitchell says:

      dmw42 thank you for trying to make sense of all that for me, sadly i don’t thing the appropriate sign was included with the official ones. lol

    137. creag an tuirc says:

      OT: Just to continue with a theme I’ve posted about in the past. Osbore comes to Scotland. The next day, another Old Firm story.

    138. Morag says:

      Ah, but if we can’t rid the entire world of the things then it would be the height of hypocrisy for us to do anything at all.  How can you possibly pretend otherwise?

      Salmond is nothing but a hypocrite for implying that it would be a good thing to get Trident out of Scotland and at the very least force Westminster to think about what the hell to do next.  He can’t make all the nuclear weapons in the world go away, and he can’t even force Westminster to scrap Trident rather than relocate it, no matter what he tries to tell you.  So vote No, because this hypocrite wants to do something when we all know that when you can’t do everything the only honest thing to do is nothing.

      Or something like that.

    139. albaman says:

      ! weivietni tnaillirb a saw ti thguoht, ylleK laehciM 

    140. Jim Mitchell says:

      I thought that all major political parties provided their Hi heid yins with media training?
      If that’s her after it, what must she have been like before it?
      The BBC really should have put out one of those warnings prior to showing it, you know what i mean, there are some scenes in the next program that some viewers might find distressing!
      Or even one of those they put out after a program such as, if you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this program then please contact……….. well anybody you think can help!   

    141. muttley79 says:

      @Jim Mitchell
       
       
      I thought that all major political parties provided their Hi heid yins with media training?
       
      It is not just political parties that do it these days.  Top football players are given media training.  You can tell that they are told not to say anything that would give their opponents motivation, or something to use against them.   

    142. Morag says:

      The really disturbing thing is that you can see Johann has had the training.  The part she’s missing is having actual coherent content to what she says.

    143. Peter Mirtitsch says:

      I am sorry. I just read some of that to my wife, and she agrees; that is fecking gibberish!!! WTF was Johann on, and can she tell us where she gets it. How fecked up do you have to be to be elected party leader for that lot???

    144. Morag says:

      Hmmm, OT.  Herald headline for tomorrow is a suggestion apparently emanating from the C of S that we should have a proper (re) coronation of Lizzie as Queen of Scots after a Yes vote.

      I’m basically republican at heart, so why do I feel attracted to that idea?

    145. Hetty says:

      so many comments on this one so keeping it short.
      Lamont’s incompetence and incoherence shines through here. I would not feel one tiny bit sorry for her as some people have indicated they do a bit.
      It’s very worrying that someone so hugely lacking, even in conversational skills, would be in any way involved in making any kind of decisions about important matters, let alone nuclear weapons! She is obviously a self seeking turn coat, to what/whoever is in her own interest and this is bad bad politics, if politics is what you could call it!  Pretty insulting to the electorate and disgusting lack of respect, she needs to think about her role for the sake of decency.

    146. molly says:

      Hi Soulcat,you make a good point .How did she get the position ? Anyone from the unions who backed her feel able to explain ?

    147. The Man in the Jar says:

      Not a lot that I can say that hasn’t already been said. Apart from my opinion that Lamont can’t go on like this for long. Either she will implode and step down as leader on health grounds or she will be pushed out. I can’t believe that Labour are not aware of what a liability she is. Thing is, who would replace her? Whoever it is will get it in the neck when there is a Yes vote in 2014.

    148. Keef says:

      Rev is it possible to put a picture of thon Krankie women who plays the kid next to this picture?
      Are they the same person? The Krankie makes more sense.

    149. molly says:

      I see according to the ‘Office of Stuart Long’ (via Guido ) that some MPs have been a bit tardy in paying their £35 fee to register with the Information Commissioners Office,allowing them to handle their constituents information. Apparently ‘it’s a straight forward area of law’,in fact ” a criminal offence “,not to do it.
      I know some MPs are very busy, BBC Scotland Interviews,BBC Radio Scotland Interviews and more eh BBC Interviews but you’d think they’d’ flipping’ well notice these things !

    150. Luigi says:

      The successful deployment of a WMD (weapon of mass deception) requires a highly skilled, articulate vocal delivery system. JL was clearly not up to the task.

    151. Doug Daniel says:

      Hmmm, having only just checked the clip from Knowing Me Knowing You With Alan Partridge that I linked to earlier, I see it was taken from the TV version, and not the DVD one, which has extra bits. This is the precise bit I was talking about, with the reference to the government taking out a white paper and “ending all discussion”:
       

    152. G H Graham says:

      These are rambling, incoherent mutterings from a woman who is clearly in the wrong job. While drunk. Or under the influence of powerful medicinal drugs. Or by someone who is simply stupid.
       
      I’m making frivolous suggestions of course. The reason for such unintelligable language is due to the fact that she is actually rather thick.
       
      She has been given a role that carries a level of responsibility that she is unable to fulfill. It is a sad indictment of the party that she represents yet I feel no remorse or sadness. She is a product of a bygone era and has found herself in charge of a party that actually is in charge of nothing. Just as well, because I would not give her the job of defrosting my fridge.
       
      Her incompetence & inability to articulate anything meaningful is shocking & disappointing but it is at the same time a huge benefit to those arguing for independence to have somone so stupid leading the opposition.
       
      How embarassing for the Labour Party to have someone represent them who is incapable of articulating anything meaningful despite having a friendly print media to help them conjure up a decent soundbite or catchphrase.
       
      Lamont is so typical though of that hard core of working class from Glasgow who think that by getting a cheap haircut, buying a pale blue, nylon simmit from Top Shop & avoiding the word ‘fuck’ or “jobby” or “wee shite” during an interview makes one First Minister material.
       
      I hope the Labour Party keeps her because she is simultaneously their greatest liability & an independent seeking Scotland’s gift.
       
       

    153. ianbrotherhood says:

       
      It’s only Thursday – already this week we’ve had:
       
       
      …well-‘ard Osborne ‘avin a giraffe, coming up here giving it all-that…
       
      …Alistair Darling having a canary…
       
      …’news’ that the Orange Order supports a ‘No’ vote…
       
      …the usual pot-pourri of Old-Firm-related cobblers.
       
      Now they’re on about a possible re-crowning of Lizzie?
       
      What next? They’re going to use Scottish jobseekers and pensioners to rebuild Hadrian’s Wall, then send us the bill?
       
      Is this what ‘trolling’ at the national level looks like? Certainly feels as if BT have fired all their arrows and have resorted to flinging unmentionables.
       
      Could it possibly have anything to do with this?:
       
      http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-news/7262-cameron-challenged-to-return-vitol-chief-donation-after-mp-lists-arkan-crimes
       

    154. Boorach says:

      Surely worth an hour of lost sleep to bait the better mob Annie!

    155. Vronsky says:

      Labour want to replace Trident but are balking at the cost.  They have set up an enquiry in the hope of finding an alternative – a cheap ‘n’ cheery nuke.   The enquiry has yet to report.  Brian Taylor knows all this and is clearly frustrated by Lamont’s inability to describe the position.  He prompts her  helpfully several times with lines like “The point is there, you’re saying the replacement might not be like-for-like for Trident” and  “you believe that Britain should retain a form of nuclear deterrent, whether that is Trident or whether that is a cheaper replacement?”  but still she can’t spit it out. 

      I agree with those suggesting that Lamont is under serious stress, continuously having to avoid questions or give them answers which (if  not actually lies) conflict with her own personal view.  She must hate it and it can’t last, but she’s trapped – Labour in Scotland surely can’t shed another leader.  I almost feel sorry for her.

      Labour’s position on Trident is described here.  It’s not that complicated, though it’s probably procrastination rather than policy.

      http://www.defencemanagement.com/news_story.asp?id=22454

    156. Patrick Roden says:

      Johann Lamont isn’t daft, but she’s been shoed in to a leadership position by the Union barons, that isn’t working.
      Once she was voted in by the barons Johann was under huge pressure, as she was well aware that the rank and file Labour members had voted overwhelmingly for Ken McIntosh and were not happy about the union stitch up. Many questions were asked of how the Labour Party chose leaders and the power of the unions block vote.
       
      This put Johann Lamont under pressure from day one as a crytical eye was being cast over her from her own members and this is why she was ‘protected’ from any hostile media interviews and Anas Sarwar was wheeled out instead.
      All we saw of Johann was carefully scripted First Ministers Questions, or pre-prepared newspaper releases with her picture and name attached.
      The Labour party spin doctors must have thought she was now ready to do ‘unscripted’ interviews and must have felt that the Labour conference would be a good time to show the people (especialy their own activists/members) that Johann was now the leader that would lead the Labour Party’s recovery, (she made this claim during her speach to the conference even though labours polling results have fallen by 2% since she became leader)
      As we have all seen the interviews were a disaster for Johann and she is now under  pressure from her own rank and file, most of whom did not want her to lead them.
      PS the Herald is fantastic again today with a fresh revelation about Ian Taylors company from Robin Dunwoodie and a huge fight between Ed Milliband and the Unite union, who is having a pop at Jim Murphy and Douglas Alexander.
      It’s all good 😉
       

    157. Fergie35 says:

      The Brit media will now realise that they cannot put this lady in a live debate.
      It will be interesting to see who they will put in, probably Darling, as David Cameron would not lower himself to deal with separatists.
      If the debate on Scottish Independence follows the usual party lines, 3 unionist and 1 Nationalist, then they need to present Johann.
      She is embarrassing, and Labour seem to be keeping their talent down and using the sooks and egotists.
       

    158. Captain Caveman says:

      “Labour seem to be keeping their talent down”
       
      Man alive, ain’t that the truth. “Labour talent” is more elusive than the fucking Higgs Boson, both north and south of the border.

    159. Morag says:

      Cast your minds back to 2007-08, oh my beloved, and the short and ignominious reign of Bendy Wendy.

      At the time, as I recall, the blogosphere was full of criticism of her woeful performance despite her alleged possession of a “brain the size of a planet” and being Gordon Brown’s blue-eyed little girl and all that.  Some urged her resignation, but wiser heads advised that the last thing the SNP wanted was for Wendy to go as she was a stellar asset for them.

      Compare and contrast.  Whatever Wendy’s faults and failings, she really does come over as “brain the size of a planet” in comparison to Johann.  Johann must be a significant asset to the SNP, and I don’t see how Labour can get rid of her at this stage.

    160. Iain says:

      Off topic, UK economy grew 0.3% in first quarter, triple-dip recession avoided. Another policy-free prop knocked out from under the Miliband for PM project.

    161. Captain Caveman says:

      “Off topic, UK economy grew 0.3% in first quarter. Another policy-free prop knocked out from under the Miliband for PM project.”
       
      It’s nowt to write home about for sure, but it’s a damn sight better than it could have been (and vastly better than great swathes of the Eurozone; Spain @ 27% unemployment and still rising; even France on 11%, compared to the UK’s 7-8% etc.)
       
      There’s much to criticise about the Coalition but at least they’re making SOME kind of fist of it, in unquestionably very, very difficult circumstances. By contrast, Labour – in 3 years of (largely self appointed) Opposition following the disaster that was their own 13 year stint – have yet to formulate any firm policy details/strategy. But what else are we to expect from such a vapid, convictionless, failed collective?
       
      I certainly criticise the SNP for their flip-flopping, floundering and lack of nous over membership status within the EU (and the true extent of Scots sovereignty from the EU as a newly formed small State in the event of independence), an Indy Scotland’s proposed monetary policy and all the rest; to me they seem to be making it up as they’re going along. But at least they’re doing a half decent job of the day to day, ongoing running of Scotland and have some direction (and true conviction in spades), unlike Labour.

    162. scotchwoman says:

      Lamont is next in a growing line of Labour in Scotland leaders who are simply unsuited to the role. She’ll feel the same relief as Ian Gray did when she steps aside after defeat next year. I guess many of her supporters recognise her conflicted position but haven’t yet got the confidence to change their stance.
      It’s sad really. She needs a hug.  

    163. Morag says:

      Hug?  Not until 19th September 2014.  No way.

    164. Robert Louis says:

      The problem for Lamont and her ‘front bench’ coterie of the talentless, is that they know that the policies they are being forced by London to adopt are NOT what people in Scotland want.  More importantly, they know those policies are not what potential Labour voters in Scotland want.
       
      Consider, in almost every policy area, including independence, they fudge and avoid the issue.
       
      Tuition fees – the ACTUAL policy of Labour is to merely lower the upper limit from 9k per year to 6K per year.  They have zero intention of abolishing tuition fees in England, and would also introduce them in Scotland, given the chance.  However, when they are questioned, they will mumble and state ‘Labour is opposed to all upfront tuition fees’.  Some people fall for that, but it is actually no different to current Tory policy.  The clue is in the word ‘upfront’.  No students pay UPFRONT tuition fees at present, even in England, they are paid after graduation.  Labour wilfully obfuscate the matter, to avoid spelling out the truth to Scottish voters, that Labour does NOT oppose the tuition fees currently in place in England.  Indeed, they often try to hide the fact, that it was a LABOUR prime minister, Tony Blair who introduced tuition fees for the first time in the UK.
      Health – simple really, despite all their blustering, they would carry on with current Tory policy in England, of privatising services, a process started by those ‘heavywieghts of socialism, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
       
      Trident- they want to keep it.  However, the nonsense above by Lamont, is because she has been told, under no circumstances to state Labour policy, as it would literally destroy Labour and be a gift to the independence campaign.
       
      Independence – they notionally oppose independence, but suggest continually they would seek further devolution of powers.  That is such a fudge, including the return of powers to London, and the removal of powers from the Scottish parliament, and handing it to Labour controlled councils.  Labour in Scotland are the ultimate ‘jam tomorrow’ bullshitters, bar none.
      Bedroom Tax – some of their MP’s including Darling and the chairchoob, despite all their bluster, didn’t even bother turning up in Westminster to vote against it.  In fact, Labour have point blank refused to commit to repealing the bedroom tax.  Oh, and let’s not forget, that it was LABOUR who introduced the bedroom tax (for private rented accomodation) in the first place.  The bedroom tax IS a Labour idea.
       
      Free prescriptions – Labour would remove them.  
       
      So, this is why Lamont talks gibberish, because she knows that were she to actually spell out Labour policies on ANY subject, people in Scotland would realise that Labour are just red tories, petending to be ‘socialists’.
       

    165. Amanayeman says:

      @Captain Caveman 9.35
      At least there is some evidence that the Higgs Boson particle exists.

    166. MajorBloodnok says:

      Johann was at Glasgow University was she not?  Was she therefore a member of the GU Dialectic society (instituted in 1861, and proving ground for many aspiring Scottish politicians), or is that debatable?  If she was they must have disowned her by now, that’s all I’m saying.

    167. Erchie says:

      Captain Caveman
       
      The SNP’s position is consistent, the attacks on that position are deranged in various manner, including three member state politicians being misrepresented by the BBC and complaining.
      The SNP states their position that Scotland is part of the EU now, it would continue as one after Independence and the EU has no mechanism for throwing a state out if the Union dissolves.
      As to money. I can understand going with Sterling for avoiding complications after Indy, then transitioning to a stable Euro (unlikely in the short term) or it’s own currency. Actually I like Ian Bell’s idea of going to the Norwegian krone.
      The thing is, the SNP have been consistent, agree or disagree, the presentation of them in the press is to try and describe it as not. In fact the quite frankly barking attacks, where Darling, for example, seems to suggest that the World cannot cope with more than one currency, or we see that oil is terrible but oil is great depending where you live. The fact these are treated seriously should shw you how skewed the reporting is

    168. CameronB says:

      Captain Caveman
      To support the point just made by Erchie, and to link this post with the one concerning the MOD’s pronouncement on the nuclear threat to he UK, just look at how the PM’s recent away-day north of the border was covered on TV. Clearly he “jumped the sub”, but you wouldn’t have gotten that impression if you only get you news from the BBC.

    169. Now, every time I see Lamont, I can’t get the image of ‘Mrs Merton’ proclaiming ‘Let’s have a ‘Heated Debate!’ out of my head.

    170. ianbrotherhood says:

      Lamont’s running out of possible lines of attack – one of these days she’s going to get up at FMQs and say ‘Please miss, can I go to the toilet?’

    171. The Man in the Jar says:

      @Horacesaysyes
      Every time I see Lamont it is “Wee Jimmy Crankie” that comes to mind an image that I have tried to delete from memory numerous times without success. Fandabydozy!

    172. Max Solanis says:

      OK, so I fall into the category of “Idiot”. Is it even possible for her to give a straight answer? No wonder Labour in Scotland is in such a shoddy shape. When your leader is more concerned with political point scoring than actually having any form of policy, which isn’t first looked into by a commission, and then you will “See what the report says”, how can you even be perceived as being a strong candidate to lead? 

      In recent years we have seen Ian Gray, and Johann Lamont take the reigns. Both of which must make their party members cringe every time they open their mouths. 

      God help them in the event of a Yes vote. Labour is in disarray, and MUST get their house in order and actually listen to the people of Scotland if they wish to retain ANY seats in the coming years. Socialism is in Scotlands nature, Moving away from those principles is political suicide. Something which Johann should remember.  

    173. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      I genuinely have no idea why Martin Kettle pops up to write about Scotland from time to time in the Guardian. I’m not sure he’s ever even been there, and he certainly knows sod-all about it. Can only assume he’s clickbait.

    174. Training Day says:

      That Grauniad piece is utterly unsubstantiated drivel, but is a typical product of metropolitan bubble-ites who haven’t the remotest idea what’s happening in Scotland, and who care even less.  There is going to be an interesting reaction from the London media when the referendum finally does get on to their radar (probably at teatime on the 17th September 2014) and they realise that things have run away from their ‘default assumptions’..

    175. ianbrotherhood says:

       
      @Rev –
       
      re Martin Kettle.
       
      Maybe he just wants to let off steam.

    176. Yesitis says:

      NorthBrit
      You’re all wrong, unionism is enjoying a “sudden buoyancy”.
       
      The sudden buoyancy of a bloated, gas-filled, floating cadaver, surfacing towards the light on the surface of a strange, new ocean, before sinking to the depths in the darkness of economic despair.
       
      Thanks for the link, NorthBrit. Who really, I mean, really believes such gibbering unionist drivel?

    177. muttley79 says:

      @Training Day
       
       
      That Grauniad piece is utterly unsubstantiated drivel, but is a typical product of metropolitan bubble-ites who haven’t the remotest idea what’s happening in Scotland, and who care even less.  There is going to be an interesting reaction from the London media when the referendum finally does get on to their radar (probably at teatime on the 17th September 2014) and they realise that things have run away from their ‘default assumptions’..
       
      Most of the MSM in the UK view Scotland as a possession.  In general, the MSM in Scotland, and Scottish Unionists are happy to go along with this as it advances their careers.  They offer no positive reasons for Scotland staying in the Union, but then act as though a No vote is assured.    

    178. NorthBrit says:

      @Yesitis
      Go on, stop holding back and say what you really think.

      Surreal article.  One wonders what SLab would have to do for Mr Kettle to consider they’d had a sub-optimal week.

      I also doubt that creating false hope is an especially good tactic from a Blither Together perspective.  

    179. Training Day says:

      @Muttley
      ‘Most of the MSM in the UK view Scotland as a possession’
       
      Aye Muttley, that thought struck me forcibly the other night when watching Sky News ‘Press preview’.  A supposedly ‘liberal’ (but bubble-ite) commentator like Bonnie Greer expressed astonishment at Salmond ‘walking into Osborne’s trap’ around currency, as did the former table tennis player Matthew Syed (who clearly knew nowt about Scotland).  From the reactions of both, you would be forgiven for thinking Salmond was the only person in Scotland in favour of independence.
       
      The ‘default assumption’ on left and right within the bubble is that Scotland surely wouldn’t be so ungrateful to vote Yes.

    180. CameronB says:

      Just posted a rather long winded reply to Kettle’s steam. I did end with P.S. Apologies if my points have already been covered, but I was just so angry I couldn’t wait until I had read through the comments and P.P.S. Perhaps you might get some help from SLabour’s new ‘Truth Team’, Mr. Kettle. (hahahahahahahhaha :))

    181. HandandShrimp says:

      Mr Kettle is unlikely to seek advice from the Truth Tellers. I think he burnt his boats with Labour when he wrote a rather disturbingly awful paean in praise of Cameron at Chequers, comparing his delighful aristocratic grace to the awful boorishness of Brown. I think Martin is batting on the Coalition side and thinks Osborne has set us all to rights (rather than set all our teeth on edge).

    182. HandandShrimp says:

      PS if Johann has any political soul at all she will have nightmares about that interview for years.

    183. Vronsky says:

      Fantasise. Lamont says: fuck this fur a gemme o’ sojers – ah’m away tae Labour Fur Independence. 
       
      Come on, Johann – you know you want to.

    184. wannebescot says:

      And here I thought “George-Bush-Speak” was unique to America!



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