This morning a consensus among the London-based newspapers is emerging and it looks like English nationalism. It takes the form of presenting Nicola Sturgeon as a “demon” — not my word but that of a veteran media commentator, Roy Greenslade, in bis blog.
Splash headlines in both the Telegraph and The Times use the word “ransom”. Greendale writes:
Gone is the praise for her TV performances. Now she [Nicola Sturgeon] is the election’s demon figure as far as Fleet Street’s blue newspapers are concerned….
The sudden realisation that the Scottish nationalist tail could end up wagging the Westminster (Labour) dog is the major concern of most of today’s London-based national newspapers.
In a Telegraph column about the SNP today, Boris Johnson, asks:
You wouldn’t get Herod to run a baby farm, would you?
The Guardian, in which Greenslade writes, has a straightforward interview with Sturgeon in which she talks about the SNP being a “constructive participant” at Westminster. Matthew D’Ancona, one of the paper’s columnists concludes:
How can a prime minister who has to run everything past Holyrood be taken seriously? Such an outcome would, of course, be worse for Cameron than Miliband. But only just.
From the papers today and the words of both Cameron and Miliband, I get a sense that they have given up on the United Kingdom and are taking English nationalist positions. There is a reluctance to accept that an English majority is trumped by a UK-wide majority however a government is cobbled together.
Scotland has been effectively ruled by by whoever could muster a majority in England for a very long time. It is a some years ago, but few north of the border are likely to forget the way Margaret Thatcher used Scotland as a colonial guinea pig for her doomed poll tax.
Could it be that the centenary of the UK losing Ireland (except for the gerrymandered six counties) will be marked in 2022 by a majority in Scotland voting for independence?
David Torrance, a columnist in the Glasgow published Herald, get down the fundamentals of the campaigns::
For all its talk of promoting “the good life”, the Conservatives ultimately want a smaller state; for all its promises of fiscal rectitude Labour wants (one would hope) a more socially just society, while for all their non-constitutional policy agendas the SNP and UKIP want independence for Scotland and the UK respectively. Anything parties say and do during an election campaign is but a contrivance to further those central aims.