Brown bottles and bad media institutions

Hello there! Roundup time again. The big talking point is still the non General Election.

Reactionary Snob has perhaps the most colourful post on the events. That colour is mostly Brown, mind you.

Gavin Yates got the reaction from Lochaline. Meanwhile, Kezia Dugdale felt a bit stood up!

With an alternative take on events, the ever-thoughtful Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting has some reasons why the SNP should be breathing a sigh of relief now that Gordon Brown has called off any autumn election.

In the wake of El Gordo’s U-turn, a petition was set up on Downing Street’s own website. Mark McDonald noted the petition’s intriguing choice of words. Richard Havers pointed out Mr Brown’s gloating that the petition had only been signed by 23 people. Never mind, it’s reached 13,176 now.

That ties in to the idea of negative credibility. Gordon Brown pointed out how little support an early election had — then people signed the petition in their droves. Cabalamat had a good post, expanding on Chris Dillow’s excellent post on negative credibility.

Meanwhile, Ewan Watt wonders why it took Mr Brown so long to make the decision. Amid the brouhaha, Grant Thoms reckons it’s time for fixed terms to be introduced to Westminster.

Bad luck to Rob Davidson, who has lost money on this. The cannier Councillor Andrew Burns is glad he didn’t place any bets on there being an election. He also wonders about the volatile nature of opinion polls.

Speaking of opinion polls, Fitaloon at Microshaft notes the massive deficit that Labour faces. Apparently the Conservative Party’s lead is the biggest it’s been since before Black Wednesday (although this seems to happen all the time).

Meanwhile, Neil Craig is more concerned with the Lib Dems’ decline in opinion polls.

Mr Eugenides lays in to the shamelessness of Alistair Darling.

Back to Gordon Brown, and Shuggy reckons the PM’s Scottishness is a problem. But it’s not the fact that he’s Scottish, but the fact that he’s Scottish Labour. I find lots to agree with in his analysis.

North to Leith has a look at The Scotsman‘s reporting of ministerial car trips. As the adverts say, they’ve gone up as well as down. I do wonder about The Scotsman sometimes. Their attacks on the SNP sometimes look stupid when it gets to the levels of obfuscation that North to Leith has pointed out. More controversial stuff from The Scotsman comes courtesy of The Scottish Patient.

Another bad newspaper is the Daily Mail. I suppose somebody has to keep an eye on it, so I suppose it’s just as well we have Bookdrunk to do the dirty work for us — this time looking at the lack of a link between breast cancer and abortion.

Another controversial media figure is Kelvin MacKenzie, who opened his big gob during this week’s edition of Question Time. Scottish Tory Boy described his anti-Scottish rant as racist. Meanwhile, Iain at Anything Caron Can Do pointed out that his views on Scottish entrepreneurship are a bit misguided. On the other hand, David McDonald thinks he might have been telling the truth.

Speaking of which, can Scotland’s economy be the Celtic Lion that Alex Salmond envisages? Richard Havers is not so sure.

A Scandal & A Disgrace looks at some of the job vacancies at Holyrood.

Osama Saeed comes out against Inheritance Tax. But Julie Hepburn seems to find the debate a little bit distasteful in parts. Another view on inheritance tax comes from Elizabeth Maginnis.

Elsewhere in the world of tax, Kenny Sheerin has a question that nationalists have so far been unable to answer, apparently.

I like your idea for scrapping the Council Tax. But I want to know what happens when you transfer the jobs from the Local Authority to the Inland Revenue. Do the staff members at the local authority get fired?

I’ve never been too keen on the idea of keeping bad policies because it keeps a lot of people in work. This isn’t the Soviet Union. You wouldn’t keep concentration camps on that kind of basis.

You might be aware of the internet campaign to get the Government offer asylum to Iraqi employees of the British Armed Forces — people who are at a heightened risk of death because of the work they have done for Britain’s Armed Forces. The Prime Minister has announced that asylum may be granted to existing employees who have worked for Britain for longer than twelve months. Robert Sharp points out that Gordon Brown is playing a numbers game with people whose lives are at risk.

Another big internet campaign trundles along. Cabalamat has invented a new verb — to usmanov.

What is it about football that attracts dodgy people? In addition to Alisher Usmanov, it’s full of shady creatures like Roman Abramovich, Silvio Berlusconi and Thaksin Sinawatra. Michael Greenwell reckons the new chairman of Celtic Football Club will fit into the scene nicely.

Despite the shadowy figures though, Scottish football is riding the crest of a wave at the moment. Craig asks if Scotland is the new Brazil, which is the cue for us to lose 6–0 to Georgia.

While there have been the continuing rumblings over whether or not an independent Scotland would have to apply to join the European Union, Scotland’s role in another international organisation is in question as well. Would an independent Scotland have to re-apply to join the Commonwealth? David Farrer doesn’t find it feasible — nor do I.

Mr Smith is worried about the relationship between the UK Government and the Scottish Government.

There has been lots of talk in the blogosphere about this, but most of it is predicable. I will just offer two opposing views on Al Gore being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Adam Smith was a Socialist; Angry Steve.

Anastasia Beaumont-Bott has six reasons why David Cameron is a hottie. I’m not sure I’m convinced…

On the slightly more X-rated end of the love spectrum, here is On the outside looking in and his take on casual sex.

Mike Power has views on a different kind of horn. He takes a look at the car crash that killed Diana and dismisses the conspiracy theories.

I liked this post from Brian Taylor about tartan on tour.

Never mind all of that politics nonsense though. The biggest event of the week has been of course the release of Radiohead’s new album, In Rainbows. Gordon McLean had these thoughts on it.

Besides that, there was not much reaction from the Scottish blogosphere. But perhaps that is just as well as Inquisitor points out about the bloke on the BBC News website who thinks that Radiohead’s best album is Pablo Honey.

As for me, I will post my thoughts on the album in due course (I would have done already, if I had the time). But in brief, Radiohead are just too far into their comfort zone for me in In Rainbows.

Sarah at Whoopdedoo points out one reason why she would prefer to be male. We’re allowed to have short hair. Woohoo!

This week, 2,000 chickens made a bid for freedom on the motorway near Cumbernauld. Clairwill would have let them take over. But that would leave Cumbernauld covered in chicken poo. Well, maybe it is a good idea then…

In the wake of Tartan Hero’s ranking of Scottish blogs (as discussed here a couple of weeks ago), Holyrood Watcher has looked at an alternative way of ranking them. But don’t take it too seriously!

I’ve spent this week being hypnotised by a magical girl, who is the modern equivalent of Magic Eye puzzles. I think I want to go out with her — she has this amazing ability to turn both clockwise and anti-clockwise at the same time. What do you think?

That’s all for this week. There were a lot of good posts this week. I could have posted more on so many topics, but I was trying once again to limit myself to one per blog.

Next week’s roundup will be a bit of a special I am led to believe, and it will be hosted by Anne McLaughlin of IndyGal. In the meantime though, please remember to get your nominations in via the formy-doo-dah-ringalinga-ding-dong on the right, or by email to

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