What a difference a week makes…

Hello there everyone! Kirsteen here from Debate is Free; doing my first Scottish Round up, please be gentle and don’t aim for the head the bruises will show.

It’s been a funny old week with the fallout of the Icelandic ash cloud still dominating much of the headlines when it wasn’t vying for space against the new phenomenon of: SuperNick!

Whereas last weeks debate was largely called in favour of the Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg, this week was a bit more of a mixed bag with the debate emerging without a winner or depending on what media outlet you prefer anyone of the three could have won it. Don’t you just love inconsistency? There were fewer anecdotes thankfully but still so sign of any killer blows from the three leaders.

Jeff thought that both Brown and Clegg shone on the night while Cameron squandered his second chance in the limelight. Jeff also comments on the leaflet controversy that has come to light both north and south of the Border with the SNP and Tories being accused by Labour of threatening to cut services.

Dispatches from Paisley is beginning to feel rather underwhelmed by the lack of gravitas shown so far in the debates. While Will takes on Trident an issue that bubbled up in last weeks debate but came to the fore in this weeks where Brown told Nick Clegg to “get real” with some unexpected support from David Cameron.

Gerry Hassan comments on this election being about change but that none of the three leaders seem able to claim the much coveted mantle of change though its not for lack of trying.

Jamie Livingstone has been excelling himself during this election with accurate and insightful election coverage. Here he comments on why it’s understandable as to why the SNP and other parties are angry at being left out the debates given the boost in the polls the Lib Dems have enjoyed.  And why the Scottish Debate on Sky News this morning is a key moment for the SNP if they are to make any head-way with their campaign.

Elsewhere Caron takes down the Tories plans for a tax break on a marriage. Caron also gets points for managing to use the word “pish”, which says it all really.

Now if any of you have been concerned about the noise you can rest assured it’s only the war drums beating at both SNP and Plaid Cymru’s respective HQ’s after the BBC’s decision to reject their appeal. Subrosa thinks its time for the BBC to be held to account for ignoring the party in government in Scotland as the SNP take the Beeb to court.

Yousuf has an intriguing guest post from a fellow Labour activist: Gavin Lingiah, on the virtues of the Human Rights Act. Lingiah fears for the future of civil liberties if Cameron makes it into 10 Downing Street. Lallands Peat Worrier also has some scepticism about the Tories and their plans for the Human Rights Act considering they are trying to paint themselves as the last hope of civil liberties and they have used the Act themselves in the past.

Aside from the seriousness of the debates and other election news the campaigns seemed to err from the outraged to the down right ludicrous with Jess the Dog overcome by the sight of Labour’s Elvis impersonator who was serenading Labour activists at a press conference this week. Cringe-worthy stuff.

The Shooglypeg is most displeased with the Scottish debates being hidden away on Sky news in comparison to the UK wide debates which are impossible to escape from.

And finally to close off on the subject of the General Election Jacq Kelly has a very interesting post about a ladies night hustings held for the Edinburgh South constituency where all the candidates on the ballot are male. Here Kelly expresses her disappointment that three out of five of the candidates decided to send a woman in their stead. It would seem that no-one has sat down and explained to some of the candidates that you can be a man AND a feminist as the same time.  Or that if they cannot empathise with 50% of their constituent’s one may be tempted to ask why they are fighting for office at all.

Joan McAlpine says to forget about Nick Clegg its actually Billy Bragg who is the greatest Englishman alive today and muses on the fear many of our friends south of the border have about being proud of their English identity. Coincidentally Bragg is also one of the nicest and most upfront people you could ever hope to interview so I am inclined to agree with Joan on her assessment of Mr Bragg.

And to end Rantin Rab vents his spleen about the lack of aviation experience of most of the CAA board, who made the decision to shut down the UK’s airways after the ash cloud from Iceland.

That’s it for this week’s Scottish Round-up, don’t forget to send in your blog nominations so they can be featured in the coming weeks.

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