STEPHEN DAISLEY: Being dead for 700 years is no barrier for Alba
STEPHEN DAISLEY: Being dead for 700 years is no barrier to supporting the Alba Party
Few things are more coveted at election time than a thumbs- up from stars of stage and screen.
Mrs Thatcher secured the pivotal backing of Bob Monkhouse and Jimmy Tarbuck.
Tony Blair won over old Lefty Noel Gallagher and ex-Thatcherite Geri Halliwell. Gordon Brown had to settle for Ross Kemp, aka Grant Mitchell off EastEnders, which explains Labour’s 2010 result.
Alex Salmond has trumped them all with the ultimate celebrity endorsement: Robert the Bruce. Having been dead for almost 700 years is no barrier to supporting Alba.
If anything, it probably helps.
Salmond’s last drain-circling attempt to cling to relevance released a video ahead of its manifesto launch yesterday in which the former King of Scots rather surprisingly backed Salmond’s list vote campaign.
William Wallace is understood to support tactical voting in constituencies, while John Comyn remains undecided.
Alex Salmond has trumped them all with the ultimate celebrity endorsement: Robert the Bruce
The narration was provided by actor Angus Macfadyen, who played Bruce in Braveheart and ‘Operating Assistant (uncredited)’ in the 1989 horror classic Body Organ Replacement Network.
Macfadyen, an Asda Price Gerard Butler, has portrayed the Mormaer of Carrick in a number of projects and there is a chance he has come to believe he actually is the 14th century monarch.
Over drone shots of flag-waving throngs, Angus the Bruce supplied a summary of Bannockburn. Given Alba’s target voters never left 1314, this seemed superfluous. ‘People power by the small folk of Scotland,’ he intoned, ‘was the straw which broke the spine of English superiority.
‘I should know,’ he declared. ‘I was there. I am the Bruce.’ I am the walrus, goo goo g’joob.
Separatists demand to be recognised as ‘civic nationalists’ but all their heroes are medieval aristos best known for killing lots of English people.
Scottish nationalism is like one long episode of Fawlty Towers except the wars they can’t stop mentioning all took place before the invention of the printing press.
The tone of the production fell somewhere between McGlashan and McUkip, a pitch to the sort of Scot who gets their history from ‘Wha’s Like Us?’ tea towels and believes in welcoming folk from all countries that don’t begin in ‘Eng’, end in ‘land’ and have our whisky revenue hidden in their treasury. ‘Alba will unite the Clans,’ Angus Braveheart foretold. I assume it was being spelled with a ‘C’.
Scottish nationalism is like one long episode of classic 1970s comedy Fawlty Towers
Later in the afternoon, Salmond posed for photographers on Calton Hill holding a giant ‘ALBA’ placard beside one of his candidates, who brandished a saltire twice his size.
In the background, a random bloke stood on the National Monument, peering at this scene, perhaps wondering whether the figures in the distance were very small or their patriotism just really, really big.
Scotland’s Folly was a fitting backdrop for the latest wheeze to bring about independence. A hubristic endeavour left in ruins after the money ran out.
Sounds about right.
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