Right, here we go the Scottish leaders’ debate, or more precisely the five faces of the main parties. That’s one each for the Most Dangerous Wummin in Britain, Wee Wullie Rennie and the Action Krankie, and two for Jim Murphy BA Politics (failed). I’m hoping Jim makes an utter tit out of himself, so if you’re looking for balanced coverage, go elsewhere. And at this juncture I’d also like to add that it’s pure vegetarian mince that Patrick Harvie wasn’t invited.
We’re getting contributions from the audience, so far we’ve had one each from supporters of each of the parties. Even the Lib Dems, no really. STV searched far and wide and actually managed to find one who wasn’t too embarrassed to appear in public.
Jim is getting asked about why it is that Labour is pure rubbish. How come no one wants to vote for the party any more. Jim’s doing that quiet voice thing again. And already I want to throw something at the telly screen. He was upset because a constituent came to him and even though she’s got two jobs she still can’t afford new shoes for her daughters. According to Jim this is all the fault of the Tories. Jim’s got two jobs too. He can afford all sorts of things. His answer to the crying woman is that Labour is going to raise the minimum wage to £8 per hour by 2020. Whoop de doo.
Nicla’s turn, and she’s laying into both the Tories and Labour. What’s the point of a Labour government if all it does is to implement Tory policies? Jim’s looking shifty. The camera cuts to a man in the audience picking his nose.
Ruth and Wullie waffled a bit. I couldn’t be bothered taking notes. I mean really, what’s the point? Sometimes your mind wanders and you find yourself thinking about more productive and useful things, like when did I last defrost the freezer? There’s probably a Lib Dem past its sell by date in there somewhere.
Why does Jim Murphy look like a turtle? Oooh he mentioned 1924 as the last time the government was formed by a party that wasn’t the largest. Get that biggest party lie in early Jim! Nicla tells him that he needs her help to get Ed Miliband into number 10. I’m still hoping that Jim’s going to tell us about someone he met on a train, I like hearing about his fantasy life.
Wullie’s getting awfie flustered. He thinks it’s wrong that a party that wants to break up Britain should have any say over the UK government. He’s not entirely clear why they shouldn’t. It’s just wrong. He’s looking really worried, like he’s wondering what time the last bus to Fife is.
Jim mentions football! Yeah! My Jim Murphy bingo scorecard is rapidly filling up. He’s still banging on with his biggest party lie, and he mentions 1924 again. It doesn’t seem to occur to Jim that he’s actually undermining his own point every time he says 1924. The British constitution hasn’t changed since 1924.
Thank god, an advert break. So far this debate is really boring. They come back and it’s Ruthie taking questions from the audience. I’ve lost the will to live already. Dear god this audience is dull. Where did STV find these people? We need a heckler in an afghan coat to liven things up. But wait! The cameras cut to a guy with a hat and an obviously fake moustache. Who is fake moustache man? It’s the most interesting question of the debate so far. Actually no, it’s the only interesting question of the debate so far. He’s probably phoned in sick and should be at his work.
Here comes creepy Jim now. Can you tell I’m biased? Good. I wouldn’t want anyone to be labouring under any false impressions, unlike Jim. He’s staring at the camera like a demented turtle and promising to increase the minimum wage to £8.50 per hour. Oh it’s £8.50 an hour that the minimum wage is going to be increased to? When did that happen Jim? You can never be sure with Jim, he just makes up policies as he goes along. Jim is now telling us the polls are “tight”. This is a novel interpretation of “the polls say Labour is going to be crushed into dust.” Jim gets asked why a small country needs to have nuclear weapons. Jim gives his usual multilateral dodging and doesn’t mention the Henry Jackson Society even once.
I still demand to know the identity of fake moustache man. It’s far more interesting than anything Jim has to say. The dog has started to bark at the telly. Must be Jim’s dog whistles. God this is dull. I think I’ll grow a moustache. Do we have to hear from Nicla and Wee Wullie?
Right Nicla is telling us that the SNP will stand up for Scotland’s interests and deliver progressive change, an end to austerity and the bedroom tax, protecting public services. All very good and worthy stuff, but all I can think about is Fake Moustache Guy.
A very dull question from a very dull audience member who is clearly a Tory. He thinks it’s insane not to reduce the national debt and wants to know why Nicla isn’t in favour of cutting all public spending and imposing a tax on false moustaches. Except of course when the false moustache is worn by a high earner, because they’re wealth creators and oh god I want to die now. This guy sounds like the sort of person you get stuck beside on the train and he insists on telling you all about adventures in accountancy for six bloody hours. He needs a false moustache to give him an air of mystery.
She gets asked by a thin lipped guy who really needs a moustache about a second referendum. There’s an ooooooh from the “hand picked by STV” audience as she says that there may, or may not, be a commitment to another referendum in 2016. Nicla retorts that the point is that it’s up to the people of Scotland to decide, not politicians. Independence supporting politician supports independence shocker.
Another question about Trident. Nicla says that very few countries have nuclear weapons and they’re weapons that can never be used because of the devastation they would cause. She points out that renewing Trident is incompatible with a commitment to multilateral disarmament.
Wee Wullie Rennie is up now. I think it’s time to go and make tea, and possibly bake scones and grow a moustache. Seriously, who gives a toss what Wullie has to say? Is there anyone left in the entire country who’s going to vote Lib Dem?
Asked why MPs are useless overpaid gits, Wullie says that in four years as an MP he helped 10,000 people with problems. Did he ever attend Parliament? Or was he spending all his days “helping people with problems”? Did any of those problems involve false moustaches? Enquiring minds want to know. False Moustache Guy is polling higher than the Lib Dems.
Where is False Moustache Guy? The cameras must be avoiding him. I miss him. He’s the most entertaining thing about this debate so far. He’s the only entertaining thing about this debate. If Jim Murphy thought that his performance on this programme was going to turn buoy up the sinking fortunes of the Labour party he’s sadly mistaken. He should have worn a false moustache, although admittedly his eyebrows have taken on a life of their own.
That’s it. I can’t take any more. I’ve lost the will to live.
Right, we’re on the final section now. Thank god it’s almost over. This format is dire. It’s more dull questions from the dull audience. Sorry audience, but we expect more entertainment from you. More false moustaches and afghan coated heckling please. Jim Murphy seems to contradict what Ed Miliband said last week in his debate, when Ed said that Labour would have to make cuts. Jim says no. Oh god who to believe? Staring eyed Ed or the mad eyebrows of Jim? Nicla nailed him on that point, but trying nail Jim on anything is like trying to stick a blancmange to the wall with a six inch nail.
Jim’s promising lots of free things. All sort of free things that he was opposed to just a few short weeks ago. He’s promised everything will be free except for false moustaches. He tells a barefaced lie about Labour abolishing tuition fees. Oh Wullie Rennie is still there too. Who realised? Who cares? Jim’s conflating devolved and reserved issues again.
This is rubbish STV. Epic fail. I very much doubt whether anyone will have had their mind changed by this debate, or whether anyone will have learned anything that they didn’t know already. Those of us who went into the debate thinking Jim was a duplicitous creepy liar will still think he’s a duplicitous creepy liar, and those of us who thought that the three Unionist parties would gang up against Nicla Sturgeon were confirmed in our belief.
Jim won’t answer Nicla’s question – will he vote with the SNP to vote down a Tory Queens Speech if Labour and the SNP combined have more seats than the Tories. Jim refuses to answer, his eyebrows are in overdrive.
Wullie Rennie says, “These are immature games.” And on that note, when Wullie Rennie becomes the voice of reason, I’m giving up.
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