Political parties go ‘barrel-scraping’ in the social media

The social media – Facebook, Twitter, even blogs like this – are going to play a much larger part in this election than any before it, but it seems some people are already watching like hawks for behaviour that can rightly be dubbed silly.

So congratulations are due to the gentleman who described as “scraping the barrel” yesterday’s story about the UKIP follower who accused Ed Miliband of being a Muslim who wants to impose Sharia Law on the UK.

Here’s his tweet:


Mr Smith is quite correct – from a certain point of view.

What a shame he wasn’t around when Robert James McNeill, who described himself as a member of Labour’s Scottish Policy Forum and vice-chair of East Lothian Constituency Labour Party (but is not, now, in either position) tweeted the following:


It’s a call for people to vote tactically in order to stop the SNP taking seats in the general election and, in fairness, almost nobody took it seriously. It wasn’t Labour policy (because that is for people to vote Labour) and it was put out by a single ‘loose cannon’ acting on his own.

The SNP took it seriously, though – even going as far as to put out a press release demanding that Labour’s leader in Scotland, Jim Murphy, make a statement about it.

What’s that again, Mr Smith? “One guy says something on Twitter and it’s a story? Talk about scraping the barrel”?

Quite correct.

Thank you for lending some much-needed perspective to the behaviour of these hysterics.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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  1. Steve Kind March 9, 2015 at 10:15 am - Reply

    Seeing as you deleted that image when I posted it as an illustration of a point in response to one of your previous posts Mike, I’m glad you’ve now decided to acknowledge it ;) – But it’s not just a lone voice any more calling for an accommodation with the Tories is it? Don’t you think it’s about time that you admitted that this “Grand Coalition” thinking is a very real element in both Labour and Conservative ? I accept fully that it is far from the majority view in the Labour Party – I know many of my Labour activist friends are absolutely horrified by it – but it’s no good being in denial about it. The Blairite element of the leadership and Parliamentary Party are a very real force and co-operation with the Tories is not as unthinkable to them as it is to you. You said in a previous post that this element would not split the party if it cost the Party power – but how can you be so confident of that – the Gang of Four did it in 1981, why would the Labour right not do it again?

    • Mike Sivier March 9, 2015 at 10:28 am - Reply

      If you posted that image, then you must be admitting you are one of the hysterics the article lambasts.
      I acknowledged it as a piece of silliness, nothing more.
      Of course it was a lone voice. The fact that another person has mentioned the ‘grand coalition’ idea – in a passing comment – is neither here nor there; they weren’t working together on it as a project, they didn’t have Labour Party support for what they were saying… it’s a ridiculous claim by the SNP and its supporters.
      You need to understand that the SNP and its followers are the only people talking about Labour working with the Tories – and we all know that they are doing it for their own political gain.

    • Florence March 9, 2015 at 12:45 pm - Reply

      Of course a Lab-Tory coalition is ridiculous. Those trying to hype it into a political story are a tiny minority creating an alternate universe, to try & discredit Labour, also with their stupid #redtories. Why are they not “selling” this narrative to discredit the Tories? When are those with the political instincts of an empty tin can going to start the #bluesocialists, eh? Ooops, shouldn’t give them ideas! They obviously want people to vote Tory, and smells like Lynton Crosby.

      There does seem to be a very vocal SNP-supporter group on all comments & blogs and BTL comment in papers with this coalition fantasy. On one BTL yesterday a SNP supporter told a disabled person (in response to posting about DWP deaths) that a majority Labour govt “would be [your] worst nightmare”. This is beginning to become sinister.

  2. Steve Kind March 9, 2015 at 12:23 pm - Reply

    Good link, thanks! Seems to me that it shows that people recognise that the Grand Coalition is a real idea that we need to be wary of. I have no doubt at all that the majority of labour members and activists think it’s nuts – but then the Party hardly has a democratic structure these days does it?

    • Mike Sivier March 9, 2015 at 1:38 pm - Reply

      The ‘grand coalition’ is not a real idea. It’s a made-up fairy tale that certain malcontents have decided to blow out of proportion in order to waste everybody’s time.

  3. Steve Kind March 9, 2015 at 12:26 pm - Reply

    Oh – and Mike – the last time someone told me what I “need to understand” was in the 1970’s when a member of the WRP told me that I “need to understand that some lies are historically true” :p

    • Mike Sivier March 9, 2015 at 1:38 pm - Reply

      That’s very funny, and completely irrelevant to anything being said now.

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