Alex Salmond speaks

The SNP have indulged in spinactivity since being elected – that is the art of making announcements or pronouncements while not actually doing anything.  For example, the Justice Secretary called for legislation banning the consideration of alcohol as a mitigating factor in criminal cases, despite the fact that alcohol has (at least since the early eighteenth century) not been a mitigating factor or relevant to defences in criminal cases.

Latest to join the spinactive fray is Alex Salmond for First Minister, the First Minister, who has today called on broadcasting to be devolved.  Ostensibly a bid to remove Natasha Kaplinsky and Sophie Raworth from our screens to be replaced with Jackie “you don’t want me to sing, surely? Oh you do?  Well, here’s my music” Bird presenting news from a Scottish perspective.  This will additionally lead to an enhanced role for Newsnight Scotland – and the possible ditching of Jeremy Paxman from our screen.  Salmond’s agenda may seem clear.  A cynic may feel that relying on the team of BBC Scotland journos (Glenn “Rhinestone Political Correspondent” Campbell et al) would lower the quality of interviewing and criticism – leaving a free path for Wee Eck, his lieutenant Nicola “head-bobbing” Sturgeon, and the great “Blinky Dick” Richard Lochhead – a man trapped in the headlights any time he’s asked a question by even the gentlest of interviewers, to lead Scotland to freedom from our neighbouring kingdom.  However, the true agenda is clear.

The inexplicable continuing saga of River City – Scotland’s national soap and rest home for actors wary of travelling furth of Glasgow – is one of the few mainstream indigenous drama productions.  Salmond is obviously a huge fan with the intent of River City going to 3, 4, maybe 5 days a week.  The hidden agenda was made clear by Elaine C Smith (“Mary Doll”) during the election campaign.  More episodes of River City means more speaking parts, means work for those refugees from Rab C Nesbitt not gainfully employed elsewhere. 

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About loveandgarbage

I watch the telly and read when not doing law stuff and plugging my decade and a half old unwatched Edinburgh fringe show.
This entry was posted in broadcasting, politics, television, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Alex Salmond speaks

  1. There was a soundbite on 5 Live, AS(FFM) was particularly unimpressive. Whilst one wouldn’t expect the Beeb to show him in his best light, to major on ‘a Scottish 6’ as the big issue does make him look faintly ridiculous. The ‘we are a net exporter of cash to the BBC’ (if it is true) would be a much better angle.
    I had been lead to understand that the SNP deliberately didn’t go on about the BBC as it was felt to be a vote-loser (OMG we might lose Eastenders!!!)

    • I’m not sure Alex is on strong ground here. the Scottish Six is not as popular as they think (outwith BBC Scotland) because people are concerned about the wider implications for the BBC – what will happen to Eastenders, Doctor Who, &c? This is because most Scots do not have a high regard for indigenous programming (the comedies are not great, the dramas virtually non-existent, and documentaries operate at a particular level of parochiality).
      If we are a net export of cash to the Beeb that may be true – but involves subsidising their website (on which Scottish material is well-served), specialist channels for children (would Scotland have its own children’s channel – Scotland’s domestic children’s unit is strong but backed by wider BBc resources?) and drama and documentary production that serves the whole of the Uk (Attenborough & the like), plus radio and the subsidising of national orchestras, concerts, the arts generally (through drama and short stories on Radio 4 &c). The pooling of resources across the Uk serves to maintain the general quality of programming across all services. Uncoupling Scotland from this would risk reducing the quality within Scotland (our domestic news coverage is a joke – and the thought of Jackie Bird reporting from Darfur fills me with fear) – and much programming would require to be bought in (from the Beeeb in many instances) with consequently less money available for indigenous programming – or if they can’t afford to buy stuff in more money available for more time to fill and a glance at the schedules reveals how that works in practice.
      You might guess I’m not in favour 😉

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