The debate for Scotland gets ugly

With less than three weeks to go until polling day, the climate around Scotland’s referendum on independence has taken an ugly turn.

With less than three weeks to go until polling day, the climate around Scotland’s referendum on independence has taken an ugly turn.

Amidst fears of voter intimidation at polling stations, it is being reported that the Better Together campaign leader, Alistair Darling will this week hold talks with Police Scotland to seek assurances on the safety of voters amidst his “increasing concerns about the temperature of the debate.”

This talks come just days after the Shadow International Development Secretary, Jim Murphy was forced to suspend his 100 towns and 100 days tour of Scotland after speaking in Kirkcaldy on Thursday.

Video footage has shown Murphy being pelted with Eggs with members of the public clearly heard jeering him, some of whom accused him of being a “traitor”, “parasite”, “terrorist” and “quisling”.

Speaking to Sky News’ “Murnaghan” programme yesterday, the Murphy said of the sorry affair:

“I don’t mind heckles and, d’you know what, I don’t even mind people throwing eggs – that’s just a dry cleaning bill.

“But what happened after the first televised debate between Alistair Darling and Alex Salmond is that things took a sinister turn.

“Instead of turning up in crowds of people on all sides there was an organised mob of Yes supporters, facilitated through Yes Scotland and local organisations through websites, Facebook and other social media.”

He continued:

“I’m not suggesting Mr Salmond has orchestrated this, of course I’m not, but Yes Scotland at a local level have made that happen.”

Responding however, Alex Salmond seemed to indicate that Murphy was over-reacting to the event and should keep quiet. Speaking on the same programme he explained:

“I condemn any egg throwing or any intimidation from any side. Somebody was convicted, of course, of online threats against me. Somebody thought his car should be a political weapon. There was a woman, a Yes campaigner, assaulted on the streets of Glasgow.

“I don’t hold press conferences accusing Murphy of orchestrating these events, because I know that would be ridiculous to do so.

“So let me be absolutely clear to people watching, if Murphy comes balling and shouting in a street corner near you any time soon keep doing your shopping, keep doing what you were doing.

“He’s just like the guy with The End Is Nigh round his neck – he’ll go away soon.”

The temperature north of the border will have been raised still further following news that UKIP intends to hold a rally in support of the Union in Glasgow on the 12th September at which Nigel Farage will be present. Last time he visited in May he was forced to take refuge in a pub after being accused by some of being “racist Nazi scum”.

Writing in the Scotsman, Brian Monteith has accused Alex Salmond of failing to condemn such incidents, leading to a mood within the Better Together campaign at the grassroots that such intimidation can continue.

Monteith wrote yesterday:

“The blame for this bitter and ugly mood goes right to the top, beyond the Yes campaign staff, to the First Minister – not because he is organising it or knows any of the people behind it – but because, when this mobbing and threatening behaviour first began in May last year with the visit of Nigel Farage to Edinburgh, he failed to condemn it in the strongest possible terms.”

He continued:

“Ever since that day the dark side of nationalism has believed it has free rein and will be tolerated by the Yes campaign leadership when it tips over street stalls, defaces posters, screams insults and menacingly huddles round No supporters or innocent bystanders. Making light of the Farage incident gave carte blanche for more visceral insults and behaviour to be let loose, and we are now seeing the result.”


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20 Responses to “The debate for Scotland gets ugly”

  1. Kryten2k35

    It’s over. Someone at Yes Scotland organised this:

    “UKIP intends to hold a rally in support of the Union in Glasgow on the 12th September at which Nigel Farage will be present. ”

    It’s done. Scotland will leave the Union.

  2. JoeDM

    Nationalism always has its nasty facist side.

  3. Leon Wolfeson

    Oh, how are you vote rigging?

    Exactly. Off the high horse. Off.

  4. Kryten2k35

    It was a joke. The implication is that Nigel Farage’s involvement in advertising the union would probably be the nail in the coffin for the union.

  5. TheJudge

    Presumably, then, we can expect Darling, Brown, Murphy, Blair McDougal and all the other Nawbies to come right out and condemn:

    “Yes Campaigners Attacked By Mob Outsde Tynecastle”:

    “Arrest After Confrontation Between Yes And No Supporters”:

    (The ‘alleged’ assailant is a well-known BNP member, apparently. Which side do you think he was ‘campaigning’ on?)

    “Twitter Troll Guilty Of Salmond Assassination Jibe”:

    And – not reported in the corporate media for some inexplicable reason – the ‘alleged’ arson attack on a ‘Yes’ campaign office in Glasgow last Saturday night.

    Puts one egg and a bit of shouting into perspective, doesn’t it?

    You Unionist self-styled ‘left’ are a sick joke, you know. There are the people of Scotland, with the one chance they will ever have to get of the clutches of the Westminster/Whitehall/City Austerity Glee Club, and you want them to stay and suffer out a twisted sense of what the word ‘solidarity’ actually means. What you really want them to do is to put themselves and their children up as hostages for your own serial failure to do anything of any value to present a genuine alternative.

  6. Selohesra

    Leon doesn’t do jokes

  7. Kryten2k35

    I noticed :/

    No reply and no apology, either.

  8. Guest

    Yes yes, those you don’t like are a sick joke. You keep on fighting against the left, who don’t want barriers and tarrifs and think workers do better united.

    You keep projecting your right wing views, as you confuse the left and Labour… (and indeed the left and the SNP…)

  9. Leon Wolfeson

    Joke? I hear that stuff said dead seriously, hence what I said about rigging. It’s (entirely deliberately) ridiculous, but so was what you posted!

    Encouraging tabloid headlines is not something I think much of.

    And replying here is a low priority, downtime thing for me.
    (Also, disqus seems not to be displaying replies today so I manually checked the thread)

  10. Leon Wolfeson

    It’s almost like there are serious issues involved, or something.

  11. Guest

    “Replying here is low priority, downtime thing for me.”

    This coming from a guy who’s made 2371 posts, is on this site almost every day, and often posts more than 20 messages a day at the weekends.

  12. Leon Wolfeson

    Exactly, LordBlagger. Unlike you I don’t make 300+ posts a day.

  13. TheJudge

    “You keep on fighting against the left…”

    No, I keep on fighting against the fake ‘left’

    “…who don’t want barriers…”

    So, presumably, you would be utterly, vociferously in favour of dismantling the so-called ‘United Kingdom’ and creating…well, what exactly? A World Government, perhaps? Or does your notion of ‘solidarity’ not really stretch that far?

    Because in order to be remotely consistent, you would have to show the same concern for the well-being of the downtrodden in Bratislava and Barcelona, Torino and Tallinn, Athlone and Athens, as you claim to show for those in Stonehaven and Stockport. Wouldn’t that mean that you deprecate the existence of your sacred ‘UK’, and would welcome its being subsumed in some larger entity? Purely out of ‘concern’ and ‘solidarity’, of course?

    “You keep projecting your right wing views…”

    I’m further to the left than you seem to be. I believe in the self-determination of ALL peoples, not just the romantically far-away ones which enable you to get off on holding ‘solidarity’ demos outside the embassies of their occupying power.

    “…you confuse the left and Labour”

    I don’t think anyone could anymore make such a fundamental error.

  14. Kryten2k35

    You post here all the time, way more than I do.

    And still no apology for jumping down my throat.

  15. Guest

    Right, anyone on the actual left is “fake” to you, etc.

    And no, I favour federalism. Moreover, I am concerned with workers, and went to reduce, not increase, barriers for them.

    You have said barriers are leftist. I disagree.

  16. Leon Wolfeson

    I make no apologies for an entirely genuine reaction to something you posted. You used anti-democratic language and got on a high horse, so…right.

  17. uglyfatbloke

    Interesting that when Darling talked about ‘carnage’ at the polling stations he was immediately rebuked by the police force for inflammatory language. of course there’s idiots on both sides…what did we expect? If you have a loads of people involved in a passionate debate there will always be nutters, but on the whole the referendum debate has been remarkably good-natured. On Friday night I saw a bunch of BT supporters and Yessers going to the pub together; not something you’d see with opposing supporters during a general election.

  18. Kryten2k35

    Lol, you really do read whatever you want to read and not what is written. I didn’t use “anti-democratic” language.

    I made a joke. You overreacted, got shitty, and refuse to apologise.

  19. Jim Anderson

    lol this ‘carnage’ and scare nonsense was a load of crap from BT. Never panned out, I’d dare any politician to go to 100 towns anywhere in UK and not get some kind of abuse.

  20. Jim Anderson

    the BNP, SDL, EDL and UKIP Prove that so do some nationalist scots but hey people only point it out when it isn’t part of what they believe in..

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