Scottish politics coverage to have even worse coverage. 

8 January 2004 report bizarrely celebrating less political regionalism in the kingdom

Perhaps, after all, we can now see how come regionalism, that noble goal of broadcasting in this country since 1922, has gone quietly unto the dark.

Here, The Scotsman – a Scottish paper for Scottish idiots and, therefore, a paper that should know better and deserves getting its collective hands slapped – is busy trumpeting the fact that the previously separate political programmes from the Grampian and STV regions are to be merged.

If we are to celebrate this, as The Scotsman would suggest, we must also celebrate a new fact. Apparently, a once diverse and culturally distinct nation made up of several peoples with different outlooks is now a great homogeneous mass, and crofters near Aberdeen or Inverness now have something deeply in common with redundant steelworkers in Glasgow, besides happening to have been born in the same country.

Voters in the north – a Liberal heartland for years – don’t want to hear about Liberalism. Voters in mid-Scotland – a Labour/SNP battleground – are fed up with plain old Socialism and want some stiff northern radicalism. Well, how convenient for all concerned.

So SMG, who own both franchises and run the northern one from Glasgow, have saved money. Wow! Wonderful! A reason to celebrate and rejoice! Democracy is diluted, local opinion is ignored, but at least a loss-making company teetering on the edge of bankruptcy has had the chance to make people redundant in the name of progress! Gawd bless ya, SMG!

Of course, The Scotsman could just be reprinting verbatim a press release from SMG without even considering the outcome, let alone the ramifications. But I’d hesitate to accuse a newspaper of seizing on cheap PR rather than thinking about real news.

If that were true, Scotland hasn’t so much betrayed devolution, more failed to deserve it.

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Liverpool, Friday 9 June 2023