The debate format seemed modelled on the Jeremy Kyle show, and pitched to the same intellectual level.
Stripping out pollsters’ unionist weighting, Yes just went from ahead to further ahead.
Poll before debate 58 – 42. Who won poll after debate 56-44. Yet media claim Yes went backwards!
The 2010 debates were much better than this in terms at least of allowing for sustained passages of thought. Whether the thoughts were any good is a different question.
I was imagining myself as a participant in tonight’s debate and the impossibility of developing any coherent arguments within the fractured format. Which of course helps those simply stating a negative rather than building a positive.
Well, that really was pretty awful. At no stage did either Salmond or Darling get given the space or opportunity to string a decent series of thoughts together. The selected questioners from the audience were overwhelmingly unionist to a degree that was absolutely ludicrous. The presenter constantly displayed aggressive body language towards Alex Salmond.
STV’s political correspondent said that the questions showed that pensions and currency were the dominant issues – given that STV chose the questioners and questions, it only shows that STV want those to be the issues.
Alex Salmond did get across the need to get rid of nuclear weapons, despite the questioning being organised to keep away from that subject.
I don’t imagine any genuine floating voter learned a lot. But the entire format and context was designed to make sure they didn’t learn a lot
Alistair Darling’s closing statement came over as though he didn’t actually believe it at all
The very next question comes from a No voter. Haven’t seen a question in twenty minutes from a Yes voter.
Four straight pro-unionist (and extremely ill-informed) questions from members of the audience obviously pre-selected by the chairman. Salmond given no chance to reply and then a pat question put to Darling.
I am truly astonished by the debate format, designed to leave no time at for consideration – or considered answers – on any of the questions and to ramp up the speed and sheer hysteria of the programme. The cutting aside to the “spin room” and that really horrible shoutey New Labour numptie woman. Also a very strange absence of the Tories, who are financing the Better Together campaign, and the other unionist elements.
In a format which seems designed to make sure nobody ever gets more than ten uninterrupted thought to develop a reasoned line of argument, and of which the express purpose appears to be simply to make people believe that the independence referendum is just a high volume slanging match between unreasonable people, it is Alex Salmond who comes over as calm and more thoughtful (not to mention polite) and Darling who comes over as the impassioned and rather snide one – contrary to advance billing.