Last night there was a party political broadcast on behalf of Boris Johnson presented by Elizabeth Windsor. I didn’t watch it. There was no need, as the speech was already given in advance in assorted soundbites by the BBC’s resident sychophant, Nicholas Witchell. Well, I say ‘speech’, but that’s only because the word is one syllable long and takes considerably less time and effort to say than “a content free run through of mealy mouthed platitudes uttered by a rich and privileged woman who doesn’t see any need to hold her family’s entitlement in check”. Which would be considerably more accurate, although somewhat lacking in brevity.
If you were waiting for something useful from the Queen’s well-I-say-speech, you’d have been wasting your time. She could have given us useful tips on self-isolation, like suggesting that one made sure that one’s servants kept their distance from one’s husband’s servants. At the very end, she quoted Vera Lynn, because that counts as an up to date cultural reference when you’re a royal. The best thing that you could say was that Betty Windsor and the Platitudes would be a good name for a band. We’ll meet again, she said. No we bloody won’t. I’ve been spending my entire life avoiding the Windsors on the telly. Which is quite an achievement when you consider the time and energy that the BBC devotes to shoving the royals down our throats.
Although the rest of us can breathe a sigh of relief that supermarket shelves are getting restocked, there was one family in the UK that never needed to worry about a shortage of toilet paper. That would be the Windsors, who don’t need toilet paper because they have the BBC’s Nicholas Witchell’s tongue firmly lodged up their arses. Nicholas is servile, ingratiating, obsequious, unctuous, sycophantic, and fawning before the figureheads of the British establishment. He gives toadying a bad name. He makes Uriah Heep seem like a doughty campaigner for personal dignity. The brown stain on his nose is permanently ingrained into the very fabric of his soul.
The concept of “difficult question” would never occur to Nicholas. He would never dare to presume to question why Charles Windsor broke government regulations and buggered off to his holiday home, spreading the virus as he went and depriving the people of Grampian of much needed medical staff and equipment. It would not occur to him that Elizabeth Windsor could do considerably more than sitting on her throne while mouthing platitudes and give some of her vast tax free fortune to the NHS so it could purchase much needed personal protection equipment. Nicholas is everything that is wrong with the UK personified in a single individual. His reports come direct from the royal sphincter.
I’m a pacificist. I’ve been a pacifist ever since I was a child. I feel to the very core of my bones that violence is wrong, counterproductive, and immoral. But if there’s an afterlife and a paradise, I want to spend all eternity poking Nicholas Witchell in the arse with a sharp pointy stick. An eternity is how long you’ll need to wait for a British media that will hold this pampered and obscenely wealthy family to account. Instead we get Nicholas, who has built an entire career out of excusing the inexusable and puffing the privileged.
Meanwhile in Scotland, never mind the virus. Never mind important public health information. There’s some SNPbaaad to be done. That’s what counts as essential when you’re a representative of the British media in Scotland. We had a farce of a press conference yesterday, when instead of answering questions about the coronavirus epidemic and the steps that the Scottish government is taking to deal with it, we saw question after question about the idiotic and selfish actions of the Chief Medical Officer Catherine Calderwood who had made two visits to her second home in Fife. Instead of questioning Nicola Sturgeon about the virus, we had instead a series of media hacks asking her the exact same question only phrased very slightly differently. It was like watching a shoal of piranhas which had scented blood. And it was very, very different from the way in which that same British media had responded to Charles Windsor doing the exact same thing – only in his case he had actually spread the virus and deprived local people of much needed medical staff and resources.
Pointing out how the media let Charles off the hook is not to excuse Catherine Calderwood. It is merely yet another illustration of the hypocrisy and double standards that infects the media in Scotland in a virulent form for which there’s no treament or cure. We see that double standard time after time after time. The bad behaviour of an independence support online is the sign of a sickness that lives in the very heart of the independence movement. A prominent anti-independence activist being an actual Holocaust denier has nothing at all to do with mainstream opposition to independence. We see that double standard in the way in which Catherine Calderwood has been hounded, but the visit of two Scottish Conservative MSPs to Ben Vorlich for a country walk – which one of them mentioned in a twitter post which was quickly deleted – passed under the radar of the Scottish media.
However let’s be blunt, the Chief Medical Officer of Scotland had to go. If she’d only visited her holiday home in the Neuk of Fife once it could have been forgiven, but she hadn’t. She’d also visited it the previous weekend, and then before that crucial piece of information came to light someone in the Scottish government released a statement about her actions which we later discovered was misleading. Someone somewhere wasn’t being entirely honest. Yes, it’s true that Catherine Calderwood behaved irresponsibly, but it’s also true that her other work was valuable and worthwhile. Both these things can be true at the same time – a point which the British media in Scotland is keen to overlook. Unfortunately she had undermined her own message and her own credibility, and in the process put the Scottish government in a very embarrassing position which detracted from the crisis at hand.
So to reiterate, it’s important to remember that you’re only allowed out for a very limited set of essential reasons. To go to the supermarket for food and provisions. For medical reasons. To care for someone, human or animal, who depends upon you. For daily exercise within walking distance of your home. To take a drive to Ben Vorlich for a country walk if you’re a Conservative MSP. To travel to your holiday home with your entourage if you’re a member of the royal family. Or, if you’re the Scottish press, to hide behind a beach hut in Fife with a zoom lens trying to get a photie of a chief medical officer.
Stay indoors, stay safe, and try not to let the Scottish media raise your blood pressure to dangerous levels. The NHS is overstretched as it is.
And finally, because we could all do with some cheering up during these difficult times…
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