24 Hours in Politics 97

This post, and particularly the last paragraph, was not predicated on the YouGove poll predicting a hung parliament – I continue to have no faith in the integrity of that company. I started writing this yesterday based on my own feeling that we could be heading into hung parliament territory. I was however motivated to return to and update this draft by the YouGove poll.

I yesterday watched Michael Gove shouting (literally) about Jeremy Corbyn supporting the IRA and Hamas on The Daily Politics, looking like an agitated tomato in spectacles. Because the mainstream media and political class live in the same utterly unrepresentative bubble, they do not realise that the large majority of ordinary people do not share their detestation of the Palestinians.

Subsequently we had Theresa May spouting utter rubbish about Corbyn going “alone and naked into the negotiating chamber”. 99% of the actual negotiating is done by teams of civil servants. Neither May nor Corbyn would be alone, they would have the same civil servants. Plus Corbyn would of course have Keir Starmer QC.

May’s jibe was supposed to echo Aneurin Bevan but it failed entirely, as the possession or otherwise of a nuclear weapon is irrelevant to the EU negotiations. The entirely spurious “alone” was not in Bevan’s quote and I can find no rational explanation of what it was supposed to mean. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the whole irrelevant jibe was designed just to set up the titter at the image of Jeremy Corbyn naked. This really has been the most appalling Tory campaign imaginable, aimed at nobody but the nastiest kind of UKIP voter.

For the BBC to lead all its news bulletins on Corbyn’s inability instantly to recall the figure on childcare costs was puerile bias. Anyone can forget a figure. Politics is not a memory test. The attempt to reduce it to such is of course made heinous by differential application. When Tories have the same, perfectly natural problem of instant recall – as when the Chancellor was £20 billion out on the cost of HS2 – it gets nothing like the media coverage given to Corbyn and Abbott.

On which point, my last posting was about the SNP’s excellent manifesto. It was perfectly possible to sit here in Edinburgh yesterday, paying a great deal of attention to the BBC, and have no idea whatsoever of the SNP manifesto’s actual contents. Equally mystifying was the Daily Politics’ attack line against the SNP. How dare they have policies for the UK when they cannot form a government at Westminster? Angus Robertson replied politely that these were the policies their MPs would advocate at Westminster, and potentially support the implementation of, depending on the electoral arithmetic. The BBC reporter flared at this and seemed outraged that the SNP have the temerity to stand for election at all. It was truly bizarre television.

We are seeing more truly bizarre television every day as the mainstream media are puzzled and disconcerted that the plebs are simply refusing to ignore their obviously correct preference for the Tory party, instead having this mad desire to think for themselves. The media remind me of the puzzled look on Ceaucescu’s face as the crowd started chanting against him. The utterly talentless Tory hack Anne McElvoy was on BBC Breakfast today oozing contempt for Corbyn and explaining why his forgetting a number on Radio 4 proved he could not govern. She appeared completely divorced from reality.

And finally, it is remarkable that the Mays’ appearance on the One programme last week was featured again and again on BBC Breakfast and even on Sky News the next morning, with BBC vox pops “showing how impressed the public were with her” and Tory commentators speaking about how lovely and ordinary she was. Last night Jeremy Corbyn was on the One Show, and by the starkest of contrasts I have found no coverage of it at all this morning.

As the polls continue to shift, there is one distinct possibility for the result of this General Election looming. The Tories might be the largest party but with no overall majority. In which case they would form either a formal or a de facto alliance with their friends in the Northern Irish unionist parties. This would either force the unionists to take ownership of hard Brexit and the consequent imposition of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic, or force Theresa May to abandon hard Brexit and outrage her supporters. I suspect the former is more likely, and the consequences of unionist enabled hard Brexit for Northern Ireland would be immense.

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97 thoughts on “24 Hours in Politics

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  • The Flying Dutchman

    “The Tories might be the largest party but with no overall majority. In which case they would form either a formal or a de facto alliance with their friends in the Northern Irish unionist parties. This would either force the unionists to take ownership of hard Brexit and the consequent imposition of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic…”

    I think it’s much more likely the Unionists would force the Tories into a soft Brexit as a pre-condition of the alliance.

    • Jo

      Yet the hard Brexiteers may not wear a soft border so determined are they to have “control” over who gets in. The thought of any dastardly migrant sneaking on to the UK mainland via a soft Irish border may very well have them frothing at the mouth.

  • Dave

    The wild attacks on Corbyn are I assume intended to hurt him, but if those doing it had any notion of the native culture of fair play they would know it has the opposite effect in practice, particularly over trivial matters, which means those doing it are either not British or they are trying to help him!

    • craig Post author

      Well, Crosby is Australian of course and a lot of Americans in May’s spin team. But unsure how it would go down in those cultures.

      • Shatnersrug

        Crosby’s technique which sadly seems to work is to amp up hate so much on the week before election that those loons that would never normally vote suddenly go out and vote Tory – it requires complete capture of all or most available media. Directly after polling day there is a deliberate change in message – he seems to think that this deactivates the extremist voter after the election but it doesn’t.

        He is not paying for large majorities he only need to push it JUST over the line. Many techniques he uses are unlawful in this country however as we’ve seen he is protected.

        I hoped that his style of Nazi baiting wouldn’t cut the mustard here but it seems to have worked – we as British do tend to get bored of such things so maybe he’s had his day.

        I certainly don’t trust any poll favourable to the left or not.

        • Ishmael

          Yea, I amplify the notion that the few are the many myself. But I actually think most have some self respect and use there own head. You’ve really got to be blinkered nowadays to not see this stuff..

          And the notion of fair play.

          And I agree these media tactics are more what id expect in the US. Have people really become that dumbed down? Not that I know save a few morons.

          • Jo

            Yes but blinkered seems to be the common mindset Ishmael especially when it came to the EU vote.

      • Ishmael

        Americans, I’m sure a few of them got pissed me making comments on twitter during their election. I really didn’t care.


        There, that should do it.

      • lysias

        The obvious bias against Trump of the U.S. media before last year’s election helped him with the U.S. electorate.

        • Jo

          What do you mean before? They’ve not let up since. If anything it’s ten times worse to the point where they’re publishing anything whether substantiated or not. That is surely cause for deep concern. I am no Trump fan but I am even more opposed to a dishonest and reckless media……especially when they have people from intelligence agencies leaking presumably classified info to them.

      • Habbabkuk

        “Well, Crosby is Australian of course and a lot of Americans in May’s spin team.”

        Yes indeed – bloody foreigners (and not even EU foreigners) !

        Mr Julian Assange is a foreigner – an Australian, I’m told.

        • James Dickenson

          How about ‘foreigners’ helping ‘terrorists’?

          “I****l quite openly backing al-Qaeda in Syria. Interview with former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy.”

  • Aim Here

    Current polling suggests the Tories will be about 15 or 16 seats short of an actual majority. That puts them just out of reach of your scenario of an anti-Brexit coalition. The DUP – the only pro-Brexit party representing NI in Parliament – only had 8 seats, and there were 3 other unionists – who happen to be on the side of sanity as regards Brexit – with one of those, Fermanagh and South Tyrone – likely to lose to Sinn Fein this time around.

    If the Tories don’t even have enough seats for a coalition, then we’re into odd territory indeed. Minority government under Corbyn or some-Tory-who-isn’t-Theresa-May followed by another snap election?

    • Shatnersrug

      Ignore the polls they exist to manipulate opinion not to predict it. Showing Labour closing in on the Tories is a standard trick to create complacency in the labour voter and panic in the Tory. We seen it at every election and yet it’s trotted out again and again and still we fall for it. There is NO polling company that works for a labour supporter and no polling company owned by a labour supporter and yet people still listen to them.

      • Jiusito

        That’s true, but of course it might backfire if it gives Labour voters hope that they might actually win after all. So much, too, depends on the defeatist / cynical / indifferent / lazy young – if they can be persuaded that their vote *can* make a difference and they turn out in numbers, who knows what might happen?

      • Johnny boy

        Project fear seems to be backfiring as a whole. Even if your conspiracy theory is correct it will still give hope to Labour supporters and show Corbyn as a real contender. How many Labour voters/campaigners are going to be complacent after 2015?

    • nevermind

      Current polling is mere speculation and complacency must not titulate the last few days when the Voting is the most important step.
      Please mark your cross in ball pen, not pencil. A note to the agents, watch the postal votes like Hawks, it will take more than one person.
      If they look untouched as if ironed, reject the votes and ask them to search/scan for the same signatures, if double postal voting occurs both votes should be thrown out, as the real vote can’t be verified.
      I wonder whether a camera team could cover Blackburn and Darwen this time, film the surrounding of polling stations and the people surrounding it, footage guaranteed. I would advise a team that understands Urdu and Bengali, so they actually can understand the serious ‘banter’ that is exchanged at some polling stations.
      Make sure your sons and daughters will vote, this time it really matters.

  • Ishmael

    “explaining why his forgetting a number” is noway near akin to forgetting consequences of there own utter incompetence, cruel malice, greed, that costs lives in so many areas. ? Id guess not.

    How do they do it. It is a true feat of mental and moral gymnastics, executed with perfectly farcical (and horrifying) precision.

    The case of our own Lucy Allan sums it all up fine. Handing a leaflet to her own minion posing as a resident in a photo.

  • nevermind

    What will these BBC pundits and media specialist say after the election, when they have failed in their task to bombard us with lies falsehood and sheer utter ignorance of important issues such as the current lack of mental health provisions and funding, their lack of plans with regards to the Wreckxit aftermath, their lack of plans for leaving the customs union etc. etc, their wants are not defined and a secret negotiation agenda is the reason they say. I believe it was a mistake to not let the public know the guist of what will be discussed, it has not provided them with more clout in negotiations, it resulted in more uncertainty and splits within the Conservative party, the Michael Fallon/BoJo disaster made that clear.

    How can cabinet ministers not Know what a fellow Conservative said and quoted?

    • James Coleman

      You doth credit politicians with an intellect and an attention to detail which they do not possess. Soundbites are all they know about.

  • Martinned

    That’s the beauty of having a reputation for fiscal reliability: it allows you to get away with all sorts of things.

    The Tories get to have a whole manifesto without any costings in it, while Labour get attacked when they get one number wrong. (It’s the same with national security, and probably with Brexit.)

    It’s related to the old saw that only Nixon could go to China. Only Theresa May can get rid of austerity or Brexit. Unfortunately she shows no interest in getting rid of either…

  • fred

    Wouldn’t it be ironic if the seats taken by the Conservatives from the SNP in Scotland were to give them a slight majority.

    • defo

      Your getting ahead of yersel freddo. If they take 3 seats, they will be doing well. FPTP mind.
      And wouldn’t it be absolutely fabulous if SNP BAD were to hold the difference between TM & JC walking into No.10.
      Rape clause Ruths angry face might furrow so much it implodes, & eats itself.

  • defo

    I’m still tempted to think they want to lose, and let someone else try to clean up the Brexit mess, blame the resulting economic depression on them, and be back in power next time.
    May has been exposed, despite Crosbys best efforts, as incompetent and a bit dim. Slightly more competent Cameron took his chance to skedaddle, at the earliest opportunity.
    Someone else to take the flak for the break up of the UK too. As a bonus.

    • K Crosby

      Never trust someone called Crosby, it always ends in tears….

      Keith Crosby.

    • Shatnersrug

      Well Cameron wanted to lose, he really didn’t think that this referendum thing was going to happen. Don’t underestimate the Tory voter – they lie about who they support and they carry a resentment to the grave.

    • Pyewacket

      I said something similar Defo, about not wanting to win it, and was accused on here of talking “codswallop”. I am still of that view. How on earth, can someone think that the Tory Manifesto complete with Dementia Tax and potential cuts affecting Pensioners is a sure vote winner is quite beyond me. All bit too like the Mel Brooks film “The Producers” complete with the song “Springtime for Hitler and Germany”.

      • J

        “Springtime for Hitler and Germany,” exactly what occurred to me in recent weeks. If the Tories don’t know what to do, the Left must step in. I’m thinking primarily of massive investment in the full range of renewable energy strategies. Britain should and could have been a world leader in research and development decades ago. It’s a win, win.

        • Ba'al Zevul

          massive investment in the full range of renewable energy strategies.

          Dream on. We’re talking bankers and politicians here, not people interested in solutions.

    • Johnny boy

      I don’t think either their egos or intellect are capable of it. It reminds me of similar ideas about Trump in his election, just a reflection of the left’s view of his competance I think.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    One of your best postings – I will always now think of Michael Gove as an agitated tomato in spectacles…hysterical.

    But I have to sit down and have a serious think about the phrase: “the mainstream media are puzzled and disconcerted that the plebs are simply refusing to ignore their obviously correct preference for the Tory party, instead having this mad desire to think for themselves.” I am not 100% sure it says what you mean it to say. Are you? J

    • K Crosby

      At least he doesn’t look like a child-molester, like he did in contact-lenses.

    • James Coleman

      Irony my friend irony. If you know it, the phrase is perfectly understandable.

      • John Spencer-Davis

        Seems to me that “refusing to accept” would make better sense. J

    • Paris

      John Spencer-Davis

      I might have written your exact comments, if you hadn’t gotten there first …agitated tomato…! ☺️ I’m happy to share that I also found myself inordinately pleased with someone’s description of Jeremy Paxman as a “deranged lunatic” in the comments section of one of Craig’s articles a day or two ago.

      And p.s. I had to read that sentence two or three times as welll …I’ve now (fairly much) convinced myself it says what Craig meant it to say …I er, think.

  • K Crosby

    I commend your disdain for the bent polling racket and note that the possibility of an election upset is always bruited in the last fortnight as in the Scotland vote (the one that the rest of Britain was gerrymandered out of). I suspect that the motives are to make a small hedge bet, to try to get wavering abstainers to vote for fear of losing and to flog more newspapers.

    • Shatnersrug

      Labour voters tend to find getting to polls more difficult that Tory voters, the news of a possible unlikely win quite often encourages them to stay home. It’s happened in every election I’ve participated from, with the exception of the Blair 97 when they tried to play down the labour support. I must admit this is the first campaign I’ve been on when I’ve felt that desire for change since 1997 but I’m very sceptical about polling – it’s just there to feed the “narrative” and create some false excitement

  • Maggie Tedd

    Thankyou for this analysis which I fully agree with. I would add that The role of the MSM particularly the BBC is increasingly worrying as evidenced also by the appalling Women’s Hour interview yesterday. The Electoral system we currently have is being corrupted minute by minute throughout this election as exemplified by the very examples of media behaviours you’ve cited.
    This is bad for Democracy.
    After this election I believe there is a need for some sort of commission, led by some very fine Academics, to examine all Communication, media platforms with regards to this GE and the EU Referendum specifically. I would want the development of a sturdy framework in which reporting etc. during election periods comes into operation- Specifically the role of the BBC especially as it is a Public Sector organisation. Any existing guidelines are clearly not fit for purpose.
    I would also like to tie this into a total reform of the Electoral system… but that’s another matter.

    • Janet Marks

      I agree that the behaviour of the media during the Labour Party leadership elections, the run up to the Referendum and this GE should be carefully examined by a commission of Academics and independent journalists. It was noticeable that the reports published by Birkbeck College and the LSE on how Corbyn has been mistreated during the Referendum were ignored by the MSM. This is yet another thing that will only be sorted out if the Conservatives lose this election.

    • Jo

      For starters I would want the BBC looked at on its own as it has a clear obligation to show impartiality yet it is even worse than the press! That just isn’t on. It is scandalous. I would love to see a campaign to bring it to a head. A campaign to persuade those concerned to withhold the licence fee would perhaps get attention as repeated complaints seem to be basically ignored. That too is scandalous. It is accountable to no one.

      • Geejay

        I agree. Both it and the press are beyond control and without effective enforcement. That’s not healthy. And does anyone seriously think that the press aren’t still up to dirty tricks to get information – “phone hacking by other means”?

  • Peter Beswick

    I liked this;
    “Pound slumps to six-week low after poll shows risk of hung UK parliament,”


    6 weeks ago the Tories were polling their biggest lead over Labour (over 20% points)

    Therefore the markets are telling us that a Tory landslide would be as welcome as a hung parliament.


    • Loony

      Maybe, but why would that be?

      Delusion seems to be the new religion for the British. In common with most other states the UK is insolvent. Liquidity cannot solve an insolvency crisis – and everything is being held together by a tissue of lies spanning the entire globe. The UK election could well mark the end of the era where lies have reigned supreme.

      If the Conservatives win big then they will be in a position to stand up to EU pressure – this could force people to recognize the truth with regard to the EU, and trigger an EU wide crisis, which in turn will trigger a global crisis. British pressure on the EU will be re-enforced by the US who are already moving against German mercantilism.

      If there were to be a minority government then the EU will be able to put pressure on the UK. The hope will be to trigger a crisis in the UK that can be contained within the UK. The aim will be to ramp up the misery to a point where the UK pleads with the EU to let it stay, or let it back in. Counter pressure will come from the US and hence the UK could be squeezed from both sides.

      This is an extraordinarily high risk strategy as the UK is much bigger than it looks when to comes to all things financial. It is probably impossible to inflict the necessary pain on the British racists/xenophobes/idiots without triggering a much wider crisis. No-one knows for certain.

      The British destroyed the last vestiges of their economy in an attempt to rescue their banking system. Not so for the Europeans, and so today you have the gigantic rotting carcass that is Deutsche Bank replete with its $46 trillion derivatives book. If you increase the pressure too much then you may well explode Deutsche Bank before you explode the UK. Again no-one knows what an explosion of $46 trillion of bogus money will look like – but it wont be pretty.

      That is how you know that all politicians are liars and idiots. They couldn’t care less about the welfare of the general population. If they did then they would never have allowed banks to grow so large. And if they had of done then they would now be seeking to dismantle the economic time bomb with the utmost care. That they are not doing so tells you all you need to know about any of them.

  • Andrew Fowler

    The problem with bias in the media, IMHO is that there are very few working class journalists. Most journalists have a privileged view of the the world, which is why we get the reporting we get.

    • Shatnersrug

      That’s the complete problem with the media in every aspect and all of the arts and entertainment

    • J

      If you haven’t already you might like to read A Century of Spin by David Miller and William Dinan.

      Exhaustively researched, entirely from the public record they take the reader through nothing less than the creation of our entire world view, and it is shocking how reliably the techniques they describe have been effective, from the early days of propaganda to the modern era of ‘public relations.’ As the authors point out, until fairly recently relatively little was written about these influence men who have been a powerful invisible hand, as they prefer. They have been the first to downplay their own effectiveness. Looking toward tomorrow, consider that of the billions currently being spent on Artificial Intelligence, the vast majority comes from the financial industry.

      If the enemy within has been our own mediated mind, the good news is the legion and diversity of antidote such as Craig. We no longer have to fight on their battle ground, I hope commentators will continue to remember this.

  • labougie

    Something’s happening for sure – I took a punt on ‘no overall majority’ 3 weeks ago at 17/1 – today I see the same bet at 4/1.

  • Muscleguy

    That outraged reporter re Angus Robertson is explainable. It is all to do with EVEL. Despite the fact that Barnett consequentials and a lot of bills containing finance elements have severely limited the application of EVEL at Westminster the perception amongst the public and obviously BBC journalists who have not been paying attention is that EVEL precludes the SNP taking ANY role at Westminster.

    Though it is hard to see, if the SNP are illegitimate in that way, how the DUP and UUP will be any different.

  • Pyewacket

    Another thing that arouses some suspicion with me regarding timing, is the proposed “Benefit Concert” given by Pop Music’s great & good in memory of the Manchester victims. Even some of their families are reported as saying that they think it too soon after the tragedy to host such an event, but clearly it appears they haven’t been heard or even consulted on the matter. The gig has been given wide coverage on BBC News both last night and today, a list of performing Artistes announced, and an assurance from the Chief Constable that all will be ok and his force can manage security, although attendees are requested not to take bags! This concert is scheduled to take place on the 4th June, rather convenient me thinks to milk this tragedy a little bit further for all its political worth.

    • nevermind

      I think that Corbyn should attend the concert and invite Mrs. evil eyes to join him.
      It would be the best policed concert ever, we would not have to listen to the Chief constable professing that all is safe.
      I could imagine that Manchesters people would want to put an end to it, by putting three fingers up to terrorists, just as with the Bataclan theatre.

      here is a little hilarity you can take part in.
      What could you envisage that would cheer up voters at the polling station on the 8th. June?, I mean, watching armed police fondling their weapon doesn’t really do it for me….
      innovative ideas for election day
      1) park your car as near as possible, dock your Iphone, or cut a CD for the CD player, then play this song, ideally in a loop. This can also work using a Rinky Dink bicycle with a battery.

      • Sharp Ears

        Nevermind. I think that song has had a massive impact on voting intentions.

        A few days ago, the number of viewings was in the 20k range, then up to + 70k and now 1,026,311 views.

        From personal experience I know that Google YT’s figures are understated so the true figure is probably much higher. This is the first election where the younger generation have got involved and they will mostly vote Labour.

      • Johnny boy

        Good idea, doesn’t really go with the 70’s outfit I was planning though..

    • Jo

      I too think this is a terrible idea and far too early. There are still people in hospital for goodness sake and families who lost someone will still be raw from the pain of that loss.

  • Robert Dyson

    I saw Theresa May do a solo party political broadcast yesterday evening. She was just missing a crown to become the pretender to the throne. It was fantasy, like a Disney movie. Even the Queen in her Christmas message looks more like us than this Mrs May.

    I had not read the 22nd May posting until now but was myself telling people we desperately need Corbyn as the person nominally responsible for Brexit negotiations otherwise we will have disaster. He just has to set the friendly tone that we want a win-win result.

    In a way you are confirming my impression of media representations. For example, why has May not been badgered over immigration for the 7 years she has been in charge not being reduced to 100,000 even for non-EU migration – the only honest answer would be that without current levels our economy, already struggling under austerity, would crash.

    What is the real agenda?

    • Shatnersrug

      Well, there is a strain of thought that the Tory being the natural political wing of the city of London are at odds with the Brexit crowd, May is tasked with the job of making sure Brexit doesn’t happen, she can only do this if the Tories aren’t leaking votes to the right – now the problem for her was that Brexit falls very close to the next election any attempts to kill it would see a huge rise in ukip support by triggering a snap election now she either gives herself five clear years to cancel Brexit and kick it into the dust or If she loses then it’s labour’s problem.

      It’s not my theory btw, it’s an interesting idea and it seems odd that the Tories would allow so many city companies to lose so much money from a problem that should be politically managed.

  • Ishmael

    Was just thinking, I do hope the Russians are interfering in our elections, balance and all that.

      • Ishmael

        Was thinking more of the Americans working directly on this campaign, myself imagine the Russians feel left out…

        Come on Russia, just a bit of “hacking” would do us a good turn.

    • Shatnersrug

      One of those daft derailing questions. Hopefully a deletion will remedy

    • K Crosby

      Hardly cowardly, he didn’t drop a cylinder bomb from 30,000 sitting on his arse, like May’s brave boys in her RAF.

    • Johnny boy

      Perhaps they got it as wrong as May did calling the election in the first place.

  • James Coleman

    Bravo Craig. You tell it like it is not as the MSM (and Tories) wish it were. Corbyn quite clearly has a widespread appeal and is a very strong campaigner among ordinary people in England. I suppose that should have been expected bearing in mind his successes during the Labour Leadership elections when the UK Media were constantly baying for his blood and putting him down, along with half of his own Labour Party, By the way, haven’t heard much from those traitors now that it looks very much that he CAN beat the Tories.

    The cutting of May’s majority is a tremendous feat and a strong kick up the arse of the fools amongst the MSM commentariat who are certainly now realising they don’t have the power any more. It has shifted to the people on Social Media.

  • Jo

    Andrew Neil just announcing how poor Emma Barnett suffered abuse on social media yesterday because she is Of a particular faith and is putting out various tweets to air the old Labour anti Semitic thing again.

    • James Coleman

      I’ve read an account of the “abuse” she suffered. It was no more than strong criticism of the way she sandbagged Corbyn. Sad that these reporters jump to the “abuse” claim at the first sign of their tender little views and feelings being attacked.

    • John Spencer-Davis

      Neil quotes James Kirkup in the Spectator that people are abusing Barnett on line because of her religion, reproducing specific examples.

      I was not aware that Zionism was a religion. My understanding was that it was an ideological and political position. I am astonished at Kirkup’s automatic assumption that criticism of someone because they are a Zionist is identical to criticising them because of their religion. I find that exceedingly distasteful. J

      • Shatnersrug

        I don’t think the charge of antisemitism as a political weapon has any traction at all outside of the media bubble, especially if someone isn’t being antisemitic. They should try ‘racist’.

        I do feel like this election is being conducted by people who are attempting to apply American issues to British ones.

        • J

          The public discourse has for decades been dominated by American issues, as such. There is a certain irony in having been so successfully and willingly colonised by the culture of our colonising ancestors.

  • mike

    On the 8am Radio Four news this morning, security correspondent Frank Gardner said: “ISIS arose in north east Syria because of how the regime was treating its own people.”

    I kid you not. He actually said that.

    ISIS came to the rescue, and the people were so grateful they asked to be beheaded or sold as sex slaves.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    …the consequences of unionist enabled hard Brexit for Northern Ireland would be immense.

    What an intriguing thought. But it’s not going to be a hard Brexit, as you know, deep down and unacknowledgeably. It’s going to be a dog’s Brexit; a mishmash of compromises, accommodations, nasty little deals, procrastination and backscratching, for all the rhetoric on both sides. Neither side wants cataclysmic changes to the status quo. That being a given, the unpoliceable NI border will remain porous, as it always has been. And I have no doubt that the Irish victims beneficiaries of EU membership will be unhindered in their search for gainful employment in the United Kingdom. As they pretty much always have been. While the Northern Prods remain in the 17th century.

  • Anon1

    “Last night Jeremy Corbyn was on the One Show, and by the starkest of contrasts I have found no coverage of it at all this morning.”

    Clips were being shown of it all morning on BBC Breakfast.

  • Big Tam

    Forgive the comment if it has been raised already, but is this YouGov poll not similar in nature to the one just prior to the 2014 referendum in which it gave Yes a significant lead…. that was meant to presumably frightened the horses and led to the undecided voting no. That poll was a bit of a rogue as seems to be this, so perhaps the intention is to have the same sort of impact on any wavering voter…. Or is this one conspiracy theory too many. Perhaps I should get out more.

  • Salford Lad

    Propaganda by Edward L. Bernays

    “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. …We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. …In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”
    ― Edward L. Bernays, Propaganda

  • Jo

    The Herald is saying Sturgeon’s approval rating has collapsed from +14 in September to -4 according to Ipsos Mori poll.

  • @scotzineguides

    The End of Propaganda.

    There’s a fine line between propaganda and healthy politics in a democracy; so fine that some think the distinction is imagined and I wouldn’t argue. But with Trump, Brexit, and now this election, it looks like ordinary people are somehow managing to rise above the incessant spin and lies; in this they’re defying the laws of liberal-democratic gravity.

    For the British State, Corbyn is simply not an option. They have invested a lot over the last 2 years in undermining him and my guess is they will not allow the possibility of a hung parliament (or, needless to say, a Corbyn victory) crystallise.

    Thus we have two opposing forces that are set to clash on election day.

    My expectation is that there will be some vow-like proclamation made that will deceive ordinary voters and help them — or at least enough of them — to get back with the program. I won’t be surprised if some sort of dirty trick or stunt is pulled either, something big.

    • @scotzineguides


      What an unfortunate turn of events. Should we expect this latest dreadful terrorist attack to impact on the campaigns, or even result in postponement, just as the polls showed they were neck and neck?

      Game over.

  • Johnny boy

    Still 8 days to go.

    I saw a clip of may at the end of some european gig, she was ignored just as surely as a UKIP leader at the end of a debate. This is where the alone comes from no doubt; in denial of her own experience and projecting it onto Corbyn.

  • Fearchar

    Your thought processes are not sinister enough to follow Theresa May’s: what kind of chamber does one go into naked? Truly, a frightening woman if she dreams up ideas like that.

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