Saturday, 11 May 2013

Where to now for The Hootsmon and Better Together?

We've had the lame attempt to smear the SNP as Nazis at the beginning of April, with an even lamer attempt to resuscitate that stoosie in May, followed by the laughably contrived attempt to turn a few unappreciative crits of a third-rate comic into a Cybernat lynch mob panic at the beginning May.

It's difficult to see where Tom 'Julius Streicher' Peterkin can go after that? Perhaps he shot the Nazi and Klan bolts a bit too early.  But is it just possible that Better Together have a limited strategic sense where The Hoostmon has none at all? 

While The Hootsmon may have prematurely ejaculated its 'big guns'  in smearing your opponent terms, it seems Better Together may be coming to realise they are not going to be able to keep racking up the fear factor all the way to 18 September 2014. Perhaps that's why Better Together's big 500 Days To Go stunt was to issue 507 Questions (but bizarrely call it 500 Questions) for the Yes campaign to answer before the referendum.  

At first, I thought it was just a laughable failure of editing that questions like "What will be the cost of a 1st Class Stamp in an independent Scotland?" and "Who will head an Advertising Standards Agency in an independent Scotland?" (and many similar) hadn't been left out at least to pare the list down to the advertised 500.  Though it was refreshing to see them overestimate a number for once.  Their reporting of attendances at Better Together gatherings are often way over the top.

I'm feeling generous today and am prepared to see an inkling of a strategic sense coming to the fore in Better Together. Perhaps Ian Taylor won't be asking for his dirty money back after seeing their latest stunt universally lampooned with questions like (rather aptly) "Will Daleks be able to go upstairs in an independent Scotland?" 

Having tried to convince us that we would be nuked by North Korea if we stepped out from under the UK Nuclear Umbrella, there was nowhere for them to go, so they've had to step back from the brink.  They now want to start us off with wee questions that might wrinkle a brow or two, like the future cost of a stamp, (what will be the cost of a UK stamp in 2016? - See, even my brow is furrowing!) so they can work their back up to terrorising us with being nuked by North Korea ... in time for the referendum.

Will The Hootsmon too step back from the brink?  Is there anywhere to go after you've tried both the Nazi and KKK smears?  How will they get the nation to Carry on Screaming all the way to the referendum? Alex Salmond-Accused as Oddbod?

With the now respectable loonies, fruitcakes and closet racists coming to the fore down South, the Men in Grey Suits grooming Boris for a Eurosceptic, right wing coup in the Tory Party, and Labour itself coming to the realisation that it is unelectable, Nazis and Racists are the last thing The Hootsmon should be bringing to the public consciousness if they want a No vote. At least, that's the first 16 of Better Together's questions blown out of the water.

The Hootsmon's Daily Mailisation Death Spiral that had them recategorising the paper as Regional (following The Herald) to stave off reporting circulation for 6 months means that it is likely to get even more sensationalist than painting a chat with the Jannie as a briefing by MI5.  Hence it will lose more readers with anything over two synapses that can fire simultaneously and it will be very lucky even to survive until September 2014.  Top Tips: If we wanted the Daily Mail, we'd buy it.

On the plus side of dumbing down, even after more than a few pints of the exceptionally fine Deuchars in Sandy Bell's, a friend and I were able to finish the cryptic crossword in record time.  In years gone by The Hootsmon has run a Haggis Hunt to drum up sales, it seems this year a Cybernat Hunt is deemed more fun.  Hopefully June's thrilling installment of the Cybernat Terror story will have us hunting rather more than the Phantom Raspberry Blower of Auld Glesca Toon.