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150430manipulation1

It’s blatant, even for The Sun.

Perhaps Murdoch’s monkeys thought they could get away with it because nobody in Scotland reads the English papers, and nobody in England reads the Scottish version of their rag, right?

Wrong.

Twitter has been having lots of fun with it. One of the earlier tweets was from Calum S, as follows: “The Sun in England: ‘Stop the SNP running the country’. The Sun in Scotland: ‘Vote SNP!’ I wonder who that could help.”

The Conservative Party, according to the Murdoch minds. They reckon that, with this pluralism, they can encourage enough Sun readers to vote Tory in England and Wales, while the Scots have been primed to vote SNP already – locking Labour out of office and putting Cameron back into Downing Street.

Rupert is banking on Labour sticking to its refusal to work with the SNP, leaving the way open for another Conservative-led Coalition government. That way, we can all look forward to another “It’s the Sun what won it!” headline in the south, and a “Never mind!” sop to the Scots, who’ll be locked into the union but with no say in anything that happens – because they voted for nationalism.

Voters in Scotland may find it hard to square the right-wing rag’s support for the SNP with that party’s own claim to be left-of-centre – but then, the SNP has found it impossible to square its claim that voters should avoid voting Labour in Scotland so the SNP can do a deal with Labour after the election, or to justify its refusal to ask voters south of the border to vote Labour (John Swinney refused to do so – what – seven times on a TV news report). The reason is that the SNP needs a strong Tory performance in England and Wales, otherwise Labour won’t need to make a deal with anyone. It’s a completely contradictory position that Nicola Sturgeon and her gang have glossed over with repeated – and often false – attacks on Labour.

The Sun – or rather its proprietor, Rupert Murdoch – is acting on the assumption that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”, supporting the SNP in Scotland because it will undermine Labour there. This puts the SNP in the uncomfortable position of seeming to be allied with the Conservative Party to lock Labour out of Downing Street – precisely the opposite of what Nicola Sturgeon has been claiming – in a close parallel to the Labour/Tory marriage-of-convenience that was Better Together.

The Sun‘s declaration – both north and south of the border – is an arrogant gesture, and a clumsy attempt to manipulate the public.

Will it work?

Only if you let it.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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