Wednesday, April 7, 2021

VIDEO: Scot Goes Popcast interview with Alex Salmond

You've already heard it, and now you can watch it in glorious technicolor. Here is the video version of Episode 6 of the Scot Goes Popcast, in which I speak with Alex Salmond, leader of the Alba Party and former First Minister of Scotland. If you have any trouble with the embedded player below, the direct link is HERE.

I've written quite a few constituency profiles for The National since I last mentioned them: Clydesdale, Hamilton, Larkhall & Stonehouse, Mid-Fife & Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy, Highlands & Islands (regional list), Falkirk West, Falkirk East, Glasgow Anniesland and Glasgow Provan.  


  1. In relation to your piece on the Highlands Regional List James.

    Well if Andy Wightman does stop the Greens winning a list seat then it is their own fault. Hell mend them. It is the price for not reining in their poisonous Wokists, the very people that drove him from the Greens.

    I think their is a message in their for the SNP as well. I will miss Andy because he was a champion for much needed land reform but the Greens are obviously not interested in that.

    The SNP have put a wokist top of their List so they wont be getting my vote.

    I am descendant of people who survived the brutal Highland clearances. It is still fresh in the memory for some of us. Some things are not forgiven even yet. The SNP would do well to remember that.

    1. Calling yes voters names will not further the cause of independence, nor attract them to Alba.

    2. I too am a descendant of Clearance victims. Likewise I'm a descendant of Irish Famine refugees. What the hell has that got to do with 21st century Scottish politics, if I may ask?

    3. A lot if your relatives suffered

  2. Oh my god! I managed to watch that from start to finish. I don't think I've ever been able to do that before with a single politician talking for more than a few seconds. It's like Alex Salmond is a human being instead of a politician.

  3. James, nice that you have this interview on the devastating day when the British/Scottish National Television Broadcasters fully disgraced themselves and their public service responsibilities.

    So far, this is the fairest grilling given to the new Alba party leader in this critical election campaign.

    You have that historical first. And I hope you get many visitors to your blog as a consequence.

    But my disdain for our Britnat TV politico-chumocracy is not likely to recover from these decisions of the BBC and STV and the silence of our big-hitter political journalists... Other than Iain McWhirter.

    I still think we will achieve the supermajority.


  4. Well done James in getting this interview with AS. I rarely watch this type of political interview, but you've just changed my viewing habits from now onwards.

    I felt Alex Salmond came over as genuine and enthusiastic about moving Scotland forward. He stated quite clearly that no-one in either Westminster or Holyrood has any real plans for the massive downturn we are facing in the very near future. This vote should be about getting us our independence and taking Scotland and its people in the right direction.

    So, thank-you for all the hard work you do, it is very much appreciated.

  5. Fantastic - well done James. Your questions were tough but fair, and handled brilliantly by AS, a real statesman. AS has always been a Marmite politician but surely most people will see him, after all he has been through, remain polite, straight to the point and tackle very difficult, personal questions without flinching. No bullshitting, no evasion, just as it is. As the big man says himself, surely fair-minded people will move on and listen to what he has to say.

    SNP 1 Alba 2 for me. :)

  6. Have not had a chance to watch yet James, but shall do.

    The main problem with Salmond is that while he is sufficiently popular among solid Yes voters (just like Sturgeon is) to potentially make a return to Holyrood, that's not of any real use in furthering the indy cause.

    To do that, you need to be popular with soft Nos and don't knows, i.e. the wider public. And there, like it or not, Salmond is very unpopular (way worse than Johnson), but Sturgeon shines. This appears to be in a very large part due to his attacks on Sturgeon and the SNP, rather than the allegations he was cleared of, according to polling.

    So the very worst thing he could do if he appears back on the scene is to 'Hold Sturgeon's feet to the fire' and by doing so, 'hold soft Nos and DKs feet to the fire'. That could kill any hope of a strong Yes vote.

    Ergo, if he wants to further the cause, he must not attack Sturgeon at all, nor force her hand, but gently help her and the SNP take Scotland forward constructively. Most importantly, he should condemn the 'pro-indy' ahem people that constantly attack the SNP/Sturgeon and so indirectly, the large section of the Yes voting electorate that voted for them.

    I personally think while a few Alba MSPs representing their true support would be good and proper, I think them holding the balance of power would not be so, not with a leader who remains so unpopular with the wider public (no matter people's personal opinions). Them and the Greens both holding the balance might be good, as then nobody can hold Scottish voters feet to the fire. The way forward would have to be consensus, which is the only way to maintain unity.

    So my favoured outcome remains the SNP with a slither of a majority, e.g. 1 (stand up Joan McAlpine), the Greens picking up some more seats, and Alba getting their fair share too. But no feet being held to the fire other than English Tory MP feet.

    1. There is no such thing as a soft no. Anyone still opposed to independence is beyond hope.

      Interesting that you say Alex Salmond shouldn't be involved in politics because the disgusting smears and false accusations from the murrell's have had an effect.

      That is a perfect example of victim blaming and also giving in to evil. You be a slave to the cult if you want. Nobody believes anything you say anymore. Your sockpuppetry has outlived any usefulness.

    2. Sorry, but that's rubbish. How can Yes vary in polls from 50% to 55% if everyone has made up their minds and won't change?

      If we are stuck on 50/50, then things don't look good.

    3. Alex has just spent from 2nd April 2018 to roughly the end of February 2021 'gently helping' Nicola Sturgeon!

      Ye can lead a horse to water, but ye cannae mak' it drink.

      I feel she has been rather less assiduous than him, in avoiding 'attacks on' fellow pro-independence politicians.

    4. Och come on, 'she clearly breached the ministerial code (which requires resignation)' when anyone with any sense and no axe to grind (including the impartial Hamilton) could see that wasn't the case, was not exactly friendly.

      If Salmond hadn't done that, you might have got me tempted by Alba, but I was flummoxed as to why he was saying that in chorus with unionists when I could see not an ounce of evidence for it. Then Along came Alba :-(....

    5. Scottish skier you should know full well how polls vary it depends on who you ask when you ask what you ask and how you ask plus of course pollsters keep records of past polls so they know they can get the result they want by simply consulting their past records and asking the question of the right people who they know will give the answer they are looking for.
      Polling is corrupt just like westminster , british newspapers , british radio , BBC , SKY , STV , in fscr most of these control the polling companies.

    6. So far IMO it's been fairly incoherent comfort-zone stuff from Salmond. But since the mood music is right, the more hardline yessers that he's aiming for are absolutely purring in adoration. "Start negotiations on day one" he says, knowing that will impress the true believers, but when asked what it means by a journalist he says "could mean talking to Westminster about a Section 30". Whit?

      When Salmond now says it doesn't make sense to blurt out your plans that's now the perfect thing to say, as opposed to previously when the same people who are now cooing would have been screaming at the SNP for a Plan B.

      Still not keen on voting SNP on the list due to their selection process, but I look at Alba and just feel like these folk are not serious enough to deserve a place in the parliament.

  7. I haven't seen this yet but I watched the Alba declaration and thought Salmond handled the questions from the journalists well. Talking to friends in my local SNP branch I have little doubt that Alba will pick up list votes and half a dozen seats or more may be within grasp.

    Pity the trolls have slowed the exchange of ideas down here, it is a time when the place should be buzzing. Trying to silence people is what they are all about so I suppose it is no surprise that they up their efforts during an election.

  8. James, The Mori poll has been released.

    1. The toxic Mad Mental Harvie party on 12%? Not a chance.

      Speaking of which, isn't denying fair coverage to nationwide parties the very definition of gaming the system?

  9. Excellent interview. AS is smart to do this sort of gigs.
    James, you should have asked him a thing or two about proper lighting and video background. It looks to me as if the guys at Alba know what they're doing.

    1. That just wasn't really an issue - it was being recorded for audio, but they asked me at the last minute if I'd like to have a video recording as well for social media, and I said yes. If it had been planned as a video recording, I'd have had the curtains open, for example. The webcam was exactly the same one I used for Yes Corner on Monday night, so the difference in picture quality is probably related to the Zoom connection.

  10. I noticed you asked about Alba's constitution.

    I haven't been able to find it yet on their website or the electoral commission website. Do you know where I can read it?

    I've joined up anyway, but that's a leap of faith from me, as I've been horrified by the 2018 changes to the SNP constitution.

    I generally read the constitution before joining ANYTHING. (As seems logical for a citizen of a country hobbled by the urgent need of a better constitution.)

  11. Good to see Alex getting a fair hearing at last.

    He's perhaps finally getting past the heartbreak of the last few years. Acknowledging justified anger towards Nicola's holier-than-thou attitude and lack of preparation for independence.

  12. Salmond isn't going to define what a 'supermajority' is, so that's meaningless guff.

    Salmond isn't going to define what he would want when a referendum S.30 is refused, apart from forming a committee. So, that's guff too.

    I think that's all their policies. Unimpressive.

    The 'look at me! I'm Alexander Salmondson!' party? When you are the most unpopular politician in the whole of the UK, that's not a good punt.