Blaming Scotland for Westminster’s shortcomings

Yesterday BBC Scotland broadcast a report about a study which found that if Scotland had gone into lockdown two weeks earlier than it did we would have suffered only a small fraction of the deaths that we’ve actually seen. It could have been possible that we’d only have had 20% of the currently recorded deaths. The report was widely criticised on social media by independence supporters who saw it as yet another attack upon Thatessempee by the state broadcaster. The science behind the report appears to be impeccable, the disagreements were about the way in which it was presented by the BBC, and its implicit politicisation.

The report was presented by the BBC as a study of Scotland in isolation. The impression was given that the Scottish Government could have entered lockdown two weeks earlier, and its failure to do so meant that hundreds of people had died who might otherwise still be with us. There was no consideration of the wider UK context in which Scotland finds itself as a part of the UK. This is what made the report unfair and misleading.

There are certainly ways in which the Scottish Government could have responded better in the early stages of this crisis. Large public gatherings could have been banned earlier. Schools could have been closed earlier. The Scottish Government could have demonstrated a bolder approach in its willingness to adopt a different strategy from Westminster. But we cannot overlook the wider UK picture, which is precisely where the BBC Scotland report failed.

We must not forget that the Scottish Government operates under constraints which are not experienced by the governments of – say – Ireland or Denmark. Holyrood does not have the full range of financial or legal powers at its disposal to introduce a full lockdown. For example the Scottish Government does not have the power to introduce the job retention scheme or the financial support for self-employed people brought in by the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer. The Scottish Government does not have the legal powers to impose checks on the borders or to prohibit entry into Scotland for travellers coming from abroad.

Any attempt by the Scottish Government to introduce a strict lockdown which was not backed by Westminster would have opened the Scottish Government up to the accusation that it was depriving workers of their livelihoods. And the BBC in Scotland would have been leading that charge. Scotland could have requested the powers to do so from Westminster, but as we all know, this is not a British Government which has displayed the slightest willingness to extend any further powers to the Scottish Government. Indeed it’s sought to claw power back. Boris Johnson’s administration would not have consented to any request from Nicola Sturgeon for even a temporary extension of Holyrood’s powers in order for Scotland to follow a distinctly different strategy in dealing with the virus.

Most damningly of all for those who seek to lay the blame at the door of Holyrood, Scotland’s scientific advisors were not allowed to participate fully in the UK Government’s SAGE meetings. Questions from the Chief Medical Officers and scientific advisors to the devolved governments had to be submitted in advance for consideration. They were reduced to the status of passive observers at meetings in which Dominic Cummings participated fully. It appears clear that the attitude of Westminster was to bully and intimidate the devolved nations into slavishly following the Conservative government’s line. Even in the scientific advice, the view of the Johnson administration was to reinforce an unequal relationship between Westminster and Holyrood. A fair report from BBC Scotland would have examined the consequences of this.

However, perhaps even more importantly, Scotland does not have a domestically controlled media of its own. The Scottish media, and BBC Scotland is the most obvious example, is controlled by and answerable to governing bodies outwith Scotland. That media has been sharp in its criticisms of any attempt by the Scottish Government to diverge from the policies of Westminster. Had Scotland attempted to introduce a strict lockdown weeks before the UK Government followed suit, again BBC Scotland would have been amongst those leading the charge against the Scottish Government. Holyrood would have been accused of undermining the UK strategy, of attempting to politicise the epidemic, and of scaremongering. When Nicola Sturgeon announced that she was banning large public gatherings before the British Government appeared willing to do so, she was subject to a torrent of abuse from British nationalist commentators in the media.

The effect of this upon the Scottish public is to reinforce the prejudices of British nationalists in Scotland who are not disposed at the best of times to heed advice from a Scottish Government controlled by Thatessempee. Those who felt that they could defy the advice of the Scottish Government because different advice was being given by the British Government would have felt validated and empowered to do so. This would have undermined any efforts from the Scottish Government to introduce stricter measures without the support of Westminster. This is an issue which nations like Ireland or Denmark simply do not have to consider. The media in any country is not merely a reporter on this epidemic, it is also an actor in the response to it.

We are seeing the exact same thing right now as the British Government is mired in confused and mixed messages about coming out of lockdown, while the Scottish Government’s advice remains to stay at home. On social media and anecdotally there are many reports of people who are politically opposed to independence and to the Scottish Government declaring that they will not be dictated to by Thatessempee. Such people are validated and emboldened by a British nationalist media which strives to undermine the Scottish Government politically, because fending off the threat of Scottish independence is their first priority. Lives are being put at risk.

BBC Scotland was right to highlight this report, but what this report really proves is that the UK as a whole needed to enter lockdown much earlier. It is a condemnation of the British Government first and foremost, because within the UK it’s only the British Government which disposes of the full panoply of powers and authority to introduce a complete response to the epidemic. The British Government failed dismally to do so, and the Scottish Government has been left playing catch up with both hands tied behind its back and having to contend with a hostile media which attacks it for any divergence from the British Government. Scotland cannot be blamed for Boris Johnson’s negligence. BBC Scotland and the British nationalist media in Scotland seek to lay the blame at Holyrood’s door for the shortcomings and failures of the British state.

And finally, because we could all do with some cheering up during these difficult times…

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49 thoughts on “Blaming Scotland for Westminster’s shortcomings

  1. At today’s covid19 update the FM was asked a shed load of questions regarding last nights bbc Scotland broadcast. It was hard to watch. But at no time did she mention the Tory uk govt and the part they played. Instead she shouldered accusation after accusation on the ineptness of her govt. I don’t know why our snp govt wants to protect a rotten useless Tory uk govt. Its time she started to show them up for what they are, especially in situations like this. Her restraint is serving no one and angering many.

    • I don’t agree with that last conclusion. Sounds almost like victim-blaming to me. Adding insult to existing injury.

      Shuffling the blame on to others, even when it is their fault, isn’t a good look. See Trump as a prime example. (And in his case, it is all his fault.) Finger-pointing during a crisis makes you look defensive even when it’s justified. Rather than co-operating in a distraction by whinging and reminding everyone just how powerless we may be, far more convincing is to demonstrate competent and positive autonomous action. Which is what Nicola Sturgeon is doing, and doing very effectively. (And why the BBC clearly don’t like it.)

      • I agree – in fact I believe that Nicola Sturgeon has been pretty clever in her responses. Hopefully this will stand the YES campaign in good stead when normal politics resumes – sometime soon I hope.

  2. Is the BBC British nationalist or English nationalist? Given its anti-Scottish, pro-London bias, I’d argue its the latter.

    • Reporting Scotland tonight showed him asking his question…didn’t show the answer though. What a surprise!

  3. Excellent summary of the situation, Paul. How any programme could present Scotland in isolation like that when it is transparently clear that had the Scottish Government acted sooner, that self-same organisation would have been among the first to condemn it as “playing politics with people’s lives and livelihoods”.

    If the BBC had been assiduous over the last few months in pursuing the science as it impinged on all of the UK instead of acting like a toadying mouthpiece for an incompetent and distracted London regime obsessed with Brexit, this programme would have been fair enough. The BBC has however clearly been rattled by the calmness and competence shown by Nicola Sturgeon during this unprecedented health crisis, and by the popular esteem that she has rightly earned, and consequently decided that “something must be done”.

    This naked attempt at character-assassination-by-proxy is thoroughly contemptible. Just when you couldn’t believe it possible, the BBC sink to a new low.

    There will be a right time to look back over all that has happened and draw suitable conclusions with the great benefit of hindsight, but now is not that time. And when the time does come, one of the most obvious conclusions will undoubtedly be one that the BBC will find acutely uncomfortable, which is that it is high time for Scotland to run all of its own affairs as an independent country. And do so without the presence of a malevolent and servile broadcasting service controlled from elsewhere to serve others’ interests.

  4. BBC has lost the plot. People are not daft. The mess at Westminster is all over the world. Matt Hancock is ridiculous. The world knows he is ridiculous. Anyone in Scotland still falling for BBC nonsense is out of step with the rest of the world. Lives have been lost because these idiots wouldn’t listen. No amount of propaganda will change that. Nemesis is coming- also to the BBC- and I hope to the Daily Express, Sun – and similar rubbish.

  5. On the powers to introduce a ‘lockdown’ available to the Scottish Government and when:

    Headline: ’The Lockdown is Lawful’ – published by UK CONSTITUTIONAL LAW ASSOCIATION


    “The recently adopted Coronavirus Act 2020 DOES NOT CONFER NEW POWERS on UK and Welsh ministers to impose a lockdown on the people of England and Wales. It DOES CONFER such powers on Northern Ireland (specifically, the Northern Ireland Department of Health) in Schedule 18; and on Scottish ministers in Schedule 19.  NEITHER NORTHERN IRELAND NOR SCOTLAND HAD THEM PREVIOUSLY.” (my emphasis)

    So according to this article, the SG did not possess the same powers as Westminster already possessed for England and Wales to allow it to establish a lockdown such as the one we have experienced: the SG was dependent on new powers being granted by Westminster.

    The Coronavirus Act 2020 was introduced by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, on 19 March 2020, and passed all remaining stages of consideration in the House of Commons on 23 March without a vote. It received all stages of consideration in the House of Lords on 25 March, and subsequently received royal assent on 25 March 2020. (Source: Wikipedia) The PM announced the ‘lockdown’ on Monday 23 March. The FM announced the same measures for Scotland immediately afterwards as I recall.

    The Scotsman on 1 April had this headline:

    ‘’Early lockdown’ means Scottish death rate will be lower: Scotland will have a lower death rate from coronavirus than the rest of the UK due to lockdown being introduced at an earlier stage of the country’s ‘epidemic curve’ experts have said.’

    This is based on the view at the time of Professor Mark Woolhouse, chair of infectious disease epidemiology at Edinburgh University’s Deanery of Population Health Sciences. He noted that the UK-wide lockdown had been established when the spread of the virus in London was already about a week ahead of the epidemic in Scotland.


    But now the charge is that it was the SG that initiated lockdown too late – even if it lacked powers prior Royal Assent on 25 March – not the Westminster government! If I and others here can research and provide such important context why not BBC Scotland?

    • Thanks for that Stewartb, I was about to post something similar. Nicola did announce certain restrictions on the 23rd/24th March which she termed ‘ almost lockdown’, obviously in anticipation of the Coronavirus bill being passed.
      The fact remains though that Nicola prior to the 25th of March had no authority to impose lockdown, nor did she have the authority to close the border between Scotland and England. Westminster retained the right over UK territorial borders including seaports and airports despite repeated attempts by both the SG and MP’s to have them either closed or testing and isolation carried out on arrivals.

    • Tsk, tsk, injecting mere demonstrable facts into this will not help Aunty throw sand into our eyes or the private sector sell us sand removal and eye care kits.

  6. If BBC Scotland is recklessly putting people’s lives at risk in order to score political points, surely they should investigated by the police.

    • Oh, the BBC are nothing if not subtle and very careful. I haven’t seen the offending programme, but I have no doubt it is clinically correct in terms of the facts and the science. So no complaint there. That’s not the point, though. As Paul indicates, it’s not what they say, it’s what they omit, and the skewed context in which they present their partial view. Which not coincidentally makes it very hard to formally hold them to account for it.

      Some of us have long since been urging the FM to act, James Kelly most notably in public, but we don’t have to carry the responsibility for taking difficult decisions within a UK political system which actively conspires to make important decisions unnaturally difficult. And we are already living in unnaturally-difficult times.

    • If BBC [*insert country of choice] is recklessly putting people’s lives at risk in order to score political points, surely they should investigated by the police.


      Note this, Andrew:

      BBC accused of ‘fake news’ as correspondent says no one will police travel in Wales
      11th May 2020


      And my response:

      And here we have the archetypal Home Counties ignorance and arrogance on full display. Only a few weeks back there was a story of some Luxembourgois being fined for ‘inadvertently straying’ into France and no-one should have been surprised ( The law is the law is the law of the country in which you find yourself – and ignorance thereof is no excuse.

      Yet, here we are not talking about ‘inadvertent strayers’. We are talking about wilful and intentional people crossing over from a zone where one law applies to another zone where a different set of legal criteria apply. In crossing from that frontier Zone A inhabitants put the health of Zone B inhabitants at risk. The primary task of the government of Zone B (or *any* government) is the well-being and health of its citizenry. To that end, I commend them and the police force in ensuring the protection and integrity of the Welsh-English border.

      Too often an anglo-centric news coverage and political agenda has polluted our airwaves and disseminated incorrect or piss-poor reporting of Cymru, y Gymraeg and her people. It is telling that (although Scots have good cause to lambast their own media and BBC Shortbread/Jockland) that this correspondent would never, ever have contemplated a news story coupled with the expression that the authorities would not police travellers between Carlisle and Gretna as it was ‘ridiculous’. Yet a similar appraisal of traffic between Chester and Chirk would be considered preposterous (recte. ‘unfair’) vis-a-vis those crossing *that* border.

      What it amounts to is that we constantly told (and fed) by Big White Chiefs and other bwanas in the House of Commons, in the media and the state propaganda mouthpiece that we are not *really* a country, not *really* important – just a subsidy-sucking entity attached to the west of England. This further feeds into those ‘who-should-know-better’ as well as those ‘who-should-know-better-but-wilfully-connive-in-not-doing-so.’

      Take two examples I know from personal experience. Firstly, the woman who is otherwise intelligent (Oxbridge education*, ditto parents and two siblings) recalls her childhood and how she posed for a photo with one foot in England and the other in Scotland for a family photo. Did she do the same when the family came on holiday to Cymru? (I think you all know the answer.)

      Again, this time an Oxford don** of many years’ standing who was unaware that Scotland and Wales were not ‘regions’ of England and had their separate histories.

      So is it any surprise if those of a similar mindset present such factually inaccurate guff for the consumption of a stultified public? But why should we put up with it? Do as many Scots do: refuse to pay the licence (aka BBC poll tax), bin the telly and get proper, decent, unbiased, correct news from trusted social media sources. God knows, we desperately need a few Welsh Ginger Dugs to bite at the arses of the British state and its lackeys.

      * Yes, I know I am using an outdated cliche. After all, we know that having an Oxbridge education is no guarantee of being one of the greatest tossers in the country. (Some might say, it’s almost a prerequisite, now)

      ** One could partly excuse this one, as they (cliche time again) are known for their ‘apart-ness’ and of residing amongst the ivory and dreaming spires of Rhydychen.

      • Your post suggests to me that you could become a Welsh Ginger Dug yersel. Don’t wait for others to act. Paul didn’t sit back on his laurels or just take the dug for a stroll. Ditto Slugger O’Toole in NI.

        • Thank you for the compliment, Muscleguy.

          I have already had published a book of parables for independence (available on Amazon), don’t forget – some 56 in all as well as 20 song-parodies with the same aim.

          However, I don’t know what the situation is with regard to my fellow-Duggers, but I am still in gainful (self-)employment as a Welsh-French-English translator and editor, so my time to actually assume the mantle of a Welsh Ginger Dug is fairly limited. (For more details on me – just click on the brown name tag I have here.)

          What I can do is to post on here to keep those interested as informed as possible of what is happening ‘back home’ (remember, I live in England) and the national parties (plural – of which I belong). You may still visit and contribute to, of course.

          I trust in any case that you find what I contribute of interest – and will continue to do so, with the approval of the original Wee Ginger Dug, whose paws I have had the pleasure of shaking.

  7. On the positive side, the BBC has simply highlighted yet another reason why Scotland needs to be independent and make its own decisions!
    If Scotland was independent the the Scottish government could have introduced a lockdown weeks before Westminster even got their backsides in gear!
    This needs to be pointed out when next we get on the campaign trail and make the case for independence.

    • Amen to that, Heather.

      “What goes around, comes around.” Karma will definitely be on our side when independence comes back into focus. As it will, and soon enough.

    • And closed our border with England and looked at ferries to NI and closed our airspace or made all incomers quarantine and rolled out test and trace. It can’t police our borders the way NZ for eg can but it could tighten them a lot more.

      Oh and we could all have a UBI to fall back on with all the benefits the Finnish trial has shown.

  8. Paul,
    Thanks for this.

    The Broadcast and Press media in Scotland are now completely under the control of the English Establishment.

    It is indeed very frightening to realise that we live in a colony in the dark, our only source of information in the hands of Sally Magnuson and Nigel Farage.
    They are actively sabotaging the Scottish Government’s efforts to fight the virus.
    They are killing people.
    As for the Brit Nats who are defying the lock down in Scotland? Are we on the brink of civil war?
    Obey Scots laws or face the consequences.
    Fines, licences endorsed, imprisonment.
    Or better still fuck off to the Mother Ship, and kneel at the feet of His Loyal Loftiness Boris the Turd.
    Roll on Indyref2.
    Nicola, close the borders, by setting up Police check points on our roads airports and ports.
    The law’s the law; break it and face the consequences.
    Riddle me this; on last night’s Kill Sturgeon dirge, the former Chief Scientific Advisor revealed that she flew to Bologna (a wee skiing trip?) in mid February as Italy was being ravaged by the virus, and was shocked, shocked I tell you, that she was not checked for Covid 19 at the airport, and upon her return to Glasgow , she was shocked, shocked I tell you, that she was not checked upon return from a Plague Zone.
    Is this woman a complete idiot, or just one of the usual ‘superior intellects’ who thinks that she is above all this ‘herd’ nonsense?
    Who in their right mind would deliberately put themselves, their family, and their fellow Scots at risk like this?

    This nasty wee BBC Gotcha Sturgeon Disclosure was a put up job from start to finish.

    Are we on the brink of civil disobedience by the Brit Nat Brown Shirts, Better Together’s Bovver Boys?

  9. I’m not even convinced the Scotgov had the financial muscle to close the schools earlier, who was going to compensate the parents that couldn’t go to work and what protection would they have had from their employers as employment law is not devolved. Also if they had cancelled events would they have been sued by the organisers for any infringement that is not devolved, I don’t know the answer to this one but I see it as a possibility.

    It was an abysmal programme by the BBC, claiming to be in depth but conveniently missing so many issues those on the internet spotted within minutes.

    • As I mentioned on a previous thread, it won’t be long before we Scots, the Welsh and the N. Irish (although Ms Foster has already made the point being an arch unionist) are reminded how lucky we all are to have been able to lean on the broad shoulders of ‘the UK’ (England) and the generosity of our taxpaying neighbours (England) and their Bank of ‘England’ during the crisis.

      Expect the word ‘subsidies’ to dominate the airwaves and media sooner rather than later, led by the usual suspect Scots who seem to enjoy wallowing in their own inferiority. How come so many are journalists? Is it a qualification for the job?

      • BBC Scotland has already stated the chancellor was handing out gifts. There are no gifts from the government, they have no money, it will all need repaid sometime down the line. They are probably already salivating about the next GERS.

  10. Not having seen the programme but the trailer for it, I was not thereby surprised by the general stooshie it caused… With legislation not enabled two weeks earlier than it could have been it was a monumental SG blunder, BBC Scotland’s own Twilight Zone….
    Having read talkingupscotlandtwo’s piece on it and the comments, there is little doubt Pacifier Quay have scored a new low after the VE-day fiasco, joined as ever by the Jackass, Sky, etc., as orchestrated a SNP-bad choir as it gets…
    What these propagandists fail to realise is that the world is watching, shaking it’s head in disbelief at what is happening in the UK, and praying Scotland gets the hell out of it…

  11. Any bets that the first 5 words of the ‘headlines’ on Distorting Scotland tonight are ‘Nicola Sturgeon Denies Cover Up’?
    The Scotsman and Herald must be within days of entering liquidation, surely?
    Surely an occasion for a Two Metter Stretch Street party?

    • Damn, they went with ‘Nicola Sturgeon dismisses cover up’.
      Then Neil Findlay on his feet booming that Edinburgh waiters and such had not been traced and checked.
      On his feet in parliament two weeks in a row.
      Worth every penny of his £1200 a week plus expenses. eh?

      He’ll be lying down in a darkened room for a wee nap after all that exertion.
      Imagine this roly poly Socialist in Sturgeon’s shoes right now?
      It is just too ridiculous for words.

  12. There is a hill called Westminster that the BBC, the “Scottish Media” and the Westminster sub branch parties are prepared to fight and die on.

    “The SNP are not Scotland” is the usual refrain from the usual suspects.

    Perhaps…perhaps not. But what the SNP will never do is take a shit on Scotland to spare Boris Johnson’s blushes.

    Did I ever tell you that I quite the license and stopped reading British media? Best decision I ever made. made a saving on antacids.

  13. I was abroad at the time of this issue. Returning to Heathrow- -no direct flights to Scotland, there were no checks on anyone as to the health status. This was the U.K. responsibility. I suppose we should look at the names of the producer, director etc and see if they have form.

  14. As I mentioned yesterday I think the Scottish Government Should reduce the number of press questions- they are not interested in the dying or ill just the click bait opportunity of claiming SNP bad. How may times has Johnson allowed the National to ask a question of the English…… sorry U.K. PM.

    Make them work for the scraps. We are into a new phase – damage the SNP

    Calling to account is fair and necessary but the news media also have an obligation (in theory) to be impartial and fair.

    It is clear certain individuals are not.

  15. A big thank you to all Scots who came out in support of Cymru re: the Daniel Sandford Affair (see above).

    Obviously, the ‘journalist’ in question is out-of-his-depth when detailed with ‘Home Affairs’. He should be relieved of his post as soon as possible – but being in the employ of the state broadcaster of the state machine, I’m not holding my breath.

    I don’t tweet, but I can follow certain tweets and responses to them and note the strong unity of purpose in supporting each other there is between our two proud nations and reactions to any slights on them, respectively.

    Diolch yn fawr iawn / Thank you very much.

  16. I didn’t see the programme but I watched Nicola today and she dealt with the politicised attacks very well. She was unwavering in her stance. She did come close to pointing out the obvious about the English care home figures – that they have been massaged. I don’t doubt she gave herself a mental ticking off for rising to the bait.

    Nicola’s supposedly pro independence detractors are apparently blind to her deftness in making the very best of an almost impossible situation. Her Brit detractors, on the other hand, are well aware of her abilities and determined to destroy her. Neither will succeed.

    Lest anyone should think that I am an uncritical acolyte, I always start from the assumption that no human being is perfect and Nicola is no exception. She is simply superb.

    • No thanks, i don’t subscribe to the BBC, and would not give them clickbait…but do feel free to maybe quote some of here…for balance because we know the BBC and other Britnat media is all very balanced…

    • I don’t have a telly and don’t pay the license fee so I cannot login to watch BBC stuff and they require a login and check for your license status. If someone were to put excerpts on YouTube or equivalent we could view them, antacids at the ready.

  17. Watching channel elderly people passing away.
    With the coronavirus.
    absolutely (.THOUSANDS.) dying in England but channel 4.just
    happens to choose an old folks home from the Glasgow.area.and
    again that Ever reliable channel 4.reporter none other than that Ciarian
    Jenkins.more than willing to Report SNPBAAAAD with the help
    Of hand picked and no doubt true Britnat unionists. quite willing to
    Speak out and Decry the SNPBAAAAD handling of the Coronavirus.
    When in actual fact Scotland is handling it better than any.what do
    You do with people like this.An absolute shower of disgusting human
    Beings.words fail me for what I Think of them.
    Roll on independence the sooner the better.

  18. Nicola Sturgeon can fight, but she also knows when to fight, and now’s not the time to give the media ammunition over a skirmish to turn into a war with the UK which is exactly what they would like, the FM will keep going and hold this thing together for as long as it takes

    Once it’s over all bets will be off

  19. Great article Paul. The BBC are scum imo though, I would give them credit for nothing at all, and certainly not for spouting SNP bad with regard to this crisis, two faced, scheming lying jobsworths who are paid massive sums to twist anything related to the Scottish SNP government.

    We all know how gleeful the BBC and other Britnat media would be if Scotland was in an even worse situation than it is now. They already dine out on every death from CV19 in Scotland. Scotland, strangled by the Britnat government, and the BBC, stifled, held back, and stolen from. It’s a nightmare situation for Scotland being shackled to a nasty colonial minded, narrow minded arrogant self important destructive neighbour.

    Nicola Sturgeon is a clever cookie, and the BBC hate her for that, they despise her in fact and attempt to undermine her at every opportunity, they stick the knife in to try reduce her confidence. It must really have them apoplectic that the FM is made of sterner stuff, and I certainly will support her all the way given the double edged sword of dealing with a pandemic, while having the dysfunctional EngGov to deal with at the same time. Who’d have her job? Not many could or would, not in a million bloody years.

  20. Those people in Scotland who wish to follow the advice of England’s government (the one which is responsible for health in England) should be shipped south of the border fir treatment when they get sick.

  21. The SG can’t win either way. Doing something different now is being condemned and they’re being told they should be marching in step with westminster. Yet they’re also being told that they were wrong not to do their own thing back in march when, as pointed out by others, they didn’t actually have the powers to do their own thing. If these so called journalists are going to have a go at our government they could at least TRY to be consistent.

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