Wednesday, August 14, 2013

McDougall veracity-watch

Has someone had a quiet word in the ear of Blair McDougall, and suggested to him that even the Campaign Director of an outfit as cynical as 'Better Together' needs occasionally to look like an actual, grown-up Campaign Director rather than an internet troll? Whatever the reason, Blair was behaving in a suspiciously un-McDougall-like fashion last night on Scotland Tonight, appearing to be the voice of sweetness and reason. You won't be surprised to hear there were still a few points he needs to be picked up on, though -

1) After Blair Jenkins pointed out that the voters who consider themselves to be well-informed are split 50/50 on independence (thus giving hope for what will happen once the rest of the electorate become better-informed, as will inevitably happen as the campaign progresses), McDougall jumped in and said something like "we have to be very careful about blaming voters for being ignorant, if they don't have enough information it's the fault of the campaigns". This was clearly (albeit deniably) intended to imply that Jenkins was saying to voters "you're ignorant and it's all your own fault" - which bears about as much resemblance to what Jenkins was actually saying as a giraffe does to a game of Stratego.

2) After being challenged about the potential adverse effect on his campaign of an impending Tory general election victory, McDougall claimed that public opinion on independence had been "remarkably stable" over the years, irrespective of the party in power at Westminster. The truth of course could hardly be more different - there was a sustained spell a few years back when established pollsters such as YouGov and ICM were showing pro-independence pluralities. Counter-intuitively, that spell coincided with a Labour rather than Tory government at Westminster, although my guess is that it probably had more to do with the public's despair at the feebleness of the Lib/Lab government at Holyrood.

3) McDougall tried to have his cake and eat it by claiming that the referendum isn't about political parties and politicians, but is nevertheless somehow all about Alex Salmond and his nefarious deeds anyway. Small hint, Blair - if a Yes vote is about Alex Salmond, then a No vote is about David Cameron, and keeping him and his ilk in 10 Downing Street. The referendum is about both leaders, or it's about neither. It can't be about one of them and not the other.


  1. I think the last point has validity.
    The choice is between a Scottish election winner such as Salmond if he wins, or a British election winner such as Cameron who is in until 2015 and polling well with his liberal partners for a party in government.

  2. I picked up on the last point too, bit of a two-faced argument.

    This is a constitutional vote, not a party political one. To suggest it is, is disingenuous and a misrepresentation.

    Other than that, McDougall was rather even handed. I did think Blair J held his ground better than normal too.

  3. A hired traitor who should be described as such in every interview he does. Vile, revolting maggot of a pretend man.

    Who wants to live in a country where the likes of him are in charge?

  4. I think that Blair McDougall is a disgusting individual. I can accept believing passionately in the United Kingdowm and wanting to defend that and convince others, but to lie and spread fear against your own people denying them the truth is not right.