Pots and kettles

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Faux outrage, offence and deeply damaged sensibilities abound. Get the sharpened pitchforks out of the shed and light the torches. By jove, there’s an agitator stalking the countryside, stirring up the peasantry, and frightening the horses.

As we are now all aware, to the point of overkill (there are lost tribes in the Amazon jungle who have just had David Mundell make a speech to them about it) Alex Salmond, the Lenin of Lithgae, has accepted an offer to host his own show, produced by his own production company, on the Russian tv channel RT, which is seen as a media outlet for Russian state propaganda.

Oh my goodness, gnash those teeth, wail like a Bob Marley tribute show, how could he do such a thing? How could an ex-First Minister of Scotland engage in such dastardly behaviour?

They’ve turned him, Putin’s henchman have bedazzled him, he’ll corrupt us, and before you know it there will be thousands singing songs about tractor quotas and crop yields in George Square, accompanied by bands of roving balalaika players looking for a gig.

Imagine that eh, a politician daring to host a TV show on a channel known for political propaganda.

Let’s not then talk about the BBC, or the fact that up until 2014 it was not licence payers who funded the extensive World Service part of the broadcaster’s service but the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. This fact has no bearing whatsoever on the channel’s output, production decisions or reporting, no, not at all.

Fair and impartial they are. Squeaky clean and as shiny as a freshly polished turd. They pride themselves on it. They are so committed to their fairness and impartiality that they need to keep telling us about it, in the hope that some eejit somewhere actually believes that they are genuinely fair and impartial.

Just look at the BBC’s reporting of the situation in Catalonia. If you fancy a game of state protectionist bingo you’ll easily find the words and phrases “separatists” “ex-Prime Minister” “Deposed leader” “illegal referendum” “charged with sedition” “only 43% turnout” (and the old classic we all remember from 2014, which only really means technically moving a nameplate for risk management purposes, not jobs, not workforces, but sounds convincing in a Project Fear sense) “businesses leaving the state in their droves” spoken or written by the score. Fair? Impartial? Not a chance.

It’s almost as if those poor people who took severe blows to their heads and bodies a few weeks ago, whilst exercising their democratic rights, from the truncheons of anonymous dark-suited and helmeted militia, never actually existed. We must have just dreamt that.

Maybe, once the Alex Salmond show gets up and running, Nick Robinson could come on as one of the guests, or better still, be commissioned to write a weekly review of the content and guests. If this was anything like his fair and impartial reporting during the late summer of three years ago it would be bound to be worth reading, it would be pure bollox, but worth reading.

I think we’re all more than capable of watching the show, and deciding for ourselves whether we think Salmond appears to have been influenced by Russian oligarchs or whether he remains firmly just a Rabbie Burns man (the Russians like him too). If the Russians do have any designs on influencing the content of his show I don’t fancy their chances much. Good luck with that.

I think many of us will find it refreshing to hear, for a change, a bit of candid discussion on the politics of Scotland, and the wider UK, in a forum not able to be manipulated or influenced by the British state, which, I suspect is one of the major reasons they are getting their union-flagged Y- fronts in such a fankle about Salmond’s new project in the first place.

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