Scottish Newspapers Take Another Hammering
The half-year newspaper figures show nearly every Scottish “regional” newspaper, tabloid or broadsheet, fell in circulation yet again, proving that the more you tell people they’re poor and meek, and they should thank Westminster rule for it, the more they wise up.
Fewer folk reading paper print can’t be blamed on the disappearance of bees, or being out of Europe. It can only have something to do with the austerity inflicted masses realising newspapers are only good for stuffing in your shoes to keep out the rain.
I had a friend who said he was a friend, a Tory journalist and Murdoch man. He had a way of telling me I was wrong in everything I tackled, same as the ‘liberal’ press tells Scotland it’s too weak to survive in a big bad world. He boasted a lot about how he put employees in their place. He’s retired now, like the Scotsman. That newspaper took a whopping hit of 25% drop in its sales. It backed a ‘No’ vote in the Referendum. It might as well have hammered a large nail into its forehead.
The loss of a newspaper is not a pleasant prospect. They’re institutions woven into the fabric of democracy. Even the worst can change owners, editor, and political stance, but when collectively they have their agenda set hard against progress and honesty in the age of Scotland’s New Enlightenment, does anybody give a damn? Refresh the page! New and better will arise in time. They cannot be any worse.
My staple reading on the train to London was a good newspaper and an automobile or an architecture magazine. I take a book these days. Everybody else has an iPad, iPhone, or Kindle. When Kindle is dug up by an archaeologist in eons to come it won’t have anything to read on it, just like our unionist newspapers now.
Brillo Pad Troll
On the subject of bullying editors, Andrew ‘Brillo’ Neil – ‘Brillo’ on account of his head hair – is back using Twitter to bag supporters of self-determination. (Brillo – Private Eye©) Should any dismiss his frenetic antagonism he blocks them. It’s a real mystery why a BBC political presenter should play around with his impartiality in a public place.He barks questions at guests, loud as a seal demanding another fish. And his sense of humour has the precise delicacy of a runaway wrecking ball.
He thinks the word ‘authoritative’, as in “GERS figures are the authoritative guide to Scotland’s finances”, (White Paper 2014) to mean only one thing, that the Scottish government calculate, compose, and endorse them, a falsehood he’s happy to promote.
GERS figures are conjecture based entirely on the principle Scotland stays within the UK. Remove Scotland from UK governance and exploitation, and the economic picture transforms radically to something greatly in its favour. The Scottish Government uses GERS because it has no option. The UK Treasury is the Fort Knox that holds the secret of how the figures are conceived.
The creator of GERS, the former Scottish Secretary of State, lean and lanky Ian Lang, came up with the idea to bamboozle “our adversaries, particularly the SNP”. Obfuscation was his goal. In that he succeeded wonderfully. GERS is more interesting for what it leaves out than what it contains. Neil is oblivious of those nuances. Scotland’s road to dignity is pot holed with attempts to bomb transparency and accountability.
Parsing is one of Neil’s hallmarks, chairman of a group of Tory publications, and technically boss of the feckless Fraser Nelson, editor of the wobbly Spectator.
Neil has grown to look an over-ripe melon permanently stuck in an armchair one size too small for him. At times it seems he fronts every political programme except Andrew Marr’s Sunday jaunt. It’s Scotland’s bad luck it has two Scots dominating BBC political output, both pillars of the British establishment. They’re craven, of course. They know where their pay packet comes from. As Nelson has his boss to keep happy, so has Neil. Neil is just better at giving the impression he’s his own boss.
News is all drama, sensationalism, celebrity punditry, and too much hospitality booze in the green room. Because so much of our news is right-wing owned and shaped, any honest report still attracts scepticism or derision. The reason for this is, they are paid by capitalists. They are told what to do and say. We only praise achievement that issues from spontaneous fee will. Free will is the basis of a liberal democracy.
Of Neil’s hobby using Twitter as a cybernat shooting alley, you begin to understand how obnoxious BBC staff manage to survive for so long, escapades uninterrupted. BBC executives are too scared to discipline or sanction any contracted presenter who earns big bucks and has pals in high places.
We can only hope Neil thumps his producer on the nose for supplying him with a tube of Brylcreme and not a packet of scouring pads. That way gets him sacked so he can be offered millions by a commercial channel to berate a troupe of captive baboons, but we won’t have to pay for his shenanigans through the license fee. Everybody’s happy.
BBC Plays hide and Seek With Truth
BBC Scotland transmitted a documentary about new secondary schools in Edinburgh and beyond that have walls fall down without warning. The schools were built under the Private Finance Investment schemes, (PFI) the schemes in which rich capitalists put up the cash to build schools, skim a large percentage of the building costs off the top as their up-front fee, and tell the construction company to use what’s left.
Once the construction company banks its profit margin it realises it has exactly two pounds and Euro coin someone slipped them left to pay for the actual building, and so resort to using toilet rolls and sticky backed plastic as building material.
With unfaltering partiality the BBC forgot to mention every school was signed off by Scotland’s then Labour government, leaving uninformed viewers to assume its all the fault of the current nasty, evil SNP administration.
Meanwhile usury rip-off interest rates will hobble Scotland’s income and expenditure until volcanoes reappear in Edinburgh and solidify the place permanently like Pompeii. Had Scotland been independent it could have introduced legislation clipping investor’s profits, or jail them and the MSP’s who negotiated the profiteering deals.
That’s the kind of society we all want, the one the rich and powerful say is Utopia.
A Welshman is an Englishman with a leek in his buttonhole, goes the cynic’s line. A Welshman called Smith is doing his best to prove that epigram accurate, and not only by his surname. Owen Smith dreams of daffodil strewn dales, and his portrait on the stairs of Number 10 Downing Street, all others removed, expect Lloyd George’s, and Tony Blair.
Smith is dashing around England, jacket off, shirt sleeves rolled up in the manner of an accountant who doesn’t like ink on his cuffs, attempting to convince Labour voters he’s the man to lead them to power and glory, amen. He’s the kind of person to light candles in his local chapel for Tony Blair.
Owen is so far removed from Scottish political realities that, to justified jeers and laughter of his audience, he praised Labour’s perpetual ingénue Kezia Dugdale. She is the branch manager in Scotland. According to Smith she is “doing a brilliant job”. That tiny incident in British political history marks the moment both were sewn up in a Union Jack, ready for burial at sea.
With English votes for English laws, and the UK torn out of Europe by proto-fascists, a Welshman might find himself disqualified from getting anointed UK prime minister.
Smith’s opponent in the leadership contest, Jeremy Corbyn, is the other candidate who think Scotland is North Britain. Corbyn backs Dugdale as branch manager. Dugdale backs Owen despite the latter having unproven support from Labour’s membership, while the former enjoys a few hundred thousand supporters who help disguise his chronic inability to be decisive.
As I have said so often, judgement poor, the mediocre always try to promote the mediocre. It makes them comfortable surrounded by people no smarter than themselves.
SNP Beaten By Labour Shock
The election of a local Labour councillor in the ancient kingdom of Fife has been trailed everywhere as a triumph for Labour, embellished as evidence the Tory party’s official crutch is on its way back to power in Scotland. The only problem with this interpretation is the trenchant revelation she’s a dyed in the Saltire independence supporter.
She is resolved to do her best to return Scotland civil rights to their rightful owners, the population. She stood down as chairperson of the Co-operative Party when her allegiance to democracy became evident, displaying integrity not seen since Sydney Carton sacrificed his life for in A Tale of Two Cities.
Here is an extract, (which littered) from her Road to Damascus moment:
“I remember the trades union legislation which Margaret Thatcher introduced, which Labour failed to repeal [when in power] which kept workers divided. I pondered a labour party which had failed to highlight the bedroom tax at earlier stages of the Welfare Reform Bill, a Labour government which had pledged to renew a redundant nuclear deterrent. And I went to sleep wondering if the Labour party socialism, by which part of my identity is defined, was beyond redemption. On the 20 March I awoke with a sense of hope and a new resolve. A resolve to vote Yes in the Referendum for independence. It won’t deliver Utopia. But it will deliver the chance for socialists to help shape a Scotland which reflects the identity of its people.”
A brave lass. Aside of the SNP more than doubling its share of the vote to 38%, (on a poor turnout) the other problem Labour’s back patters have is, Mary Lockhart wants rid of Trident, a firmly entrenched SNP policy. She will, of course, get cold shouldered and probably ostracized by Labour colleagues who think she betrays the cause, a cause that once upon a time advocated Home Rule for Scotland.
People forget that when idealist and pragmatist Keir Hardie founded the Labour party he named it The Independent Labour Party.
Irony is everywhere.