Friday, October 7, 2011

Cameron a liability in the independence referendum? Don't be fooled - he can pronounce 'feartie'.

I was grateful to Stuart Dickson yesterday for forwarding me an article from behind the paywall, detailing the dismissal of the Scottish Tories' Head of Media for "systematic party bias" in favour of Ruth Davidson during the leadership election. The only surprise to me is that he got the chop for it - isn't systematic party bias in favour of Ruth Davidson the official Cameroon position?

The rest of the article concerns the opposition parties' scathing attacks on David Cameron for failing to mention Scotland or the upcoming independence referendum during his leader's address to conference. Jeez, these guys are impossible to please. They should follow the shining example of Alan Cochrane over at Tory Hoose, who is more than content to conclude that Cameron has his finger right on the Scottish pulse and will be a "formidable asset" in the referendum campaign simply on the basis that...he used the word "feartie" and pronounced it correctly.


In fact, Cochrane's musings on the matter are strikingly reminiscent of breathless BBC royal correspondents down the years marvelling at the success of assorted princes and princesses in mastering fiendishly complicated tasks such as opening curtains or posting a letter -

"However, as well as having the hacks scratching their heads about who could have taught this old Etonian a word like “feartie” – he even pronounced it properly..."

If the possibility that Cameron might have had a Scot around to ask about such matters hasn't even occurred to Cochrane, that tells us all we need to know about the Prime Minister's inner circle. And Old Etonian Tory leaders may not be renowned for having much of an attention-span for things outside their normal range of experience, but just how long does it take to rehearse the correct pronunciation of a single word?

But, admittedly, if Ed Miliband's attempt at "Lamont" is the standard to beat, the boy done good.

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