BBC Question Time: open thread

by Stephen Tall on February 28, 2008

Nicol Stephen, the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader, is one of the panellists on tonight’s Question Time (broadcast on BBC1 and online from 10.35 pm GMT).

He’ll be alongside the Deputy Scottish Labour leader Cathy Jamieson, the Scottish Conservative leader Annabel Goldie, the Deputy Leader of the Scottish National Party Nicola Sturgeon, and Respect MP for Bethnal Green and Bow George Galloway.

If you’re watching, and want to sound-off, please feel free to use the comments thread.

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It’s going to be Very party political tonight..

by Leo Watkins on February 28, 2008 at 10:04 pm. Reply #

I like Nicol Stephen but he’s being a bit waffley. But we should aim to be very much less waffly – more pointed – we’re the outsiders, we have to take risks. I’ve always thought that Huhne has done a good job in the media in this regard.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 10:51 pm. Reply #

I dislike a lot of Golloways views (obviously…) but i admire his charismatic way of putting his partisan views across. We should learn.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 10:53 pm. Reply #

RE: the dodgy dossier.

Why the hell is this not front page news?? It was a written by a spin doctor. People just don’t care…

We should have been a lot more clear on our reasoning for being anti-war rather than just anti-war. If we had done so perhaps we could be on the front page now shouting, look we were right they were lying – We should have called their bluff – we didn’t.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 10:57 pm. Reply #


Goldie putting the anit-database case across a lot better and clearer than Stephen. I still have faith in him though, he can pull this back.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:07 pm. Reply #

Goldie is the perfect example of an excellent media perfomer who happens to be the leader of a failing political party (not in england though, obivously, unfortunately).

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:09 pm. Reply #

Why do so many Lib Dems waffle?

by David Blake on February 28, 2008 at 11:11 pm. Reply #

Scottish labour just don’t know where they stand do they, ha ha – they’re really rubbish at everything – half of them could easily join the SNP – they have the same policies and I bet they blatently don’t care bout the Union otherwise the wouldn’t have left the horrendous and real WLQ hanging in the balance. It’s been said before but i’ll say it again – that coalition was a mistake.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:13 pm. Reply #

“Why do so many Lib Dems waffle?”

As a general rule we don’t – but we get a lot less media time and we always try to be fair – perfectly admirably. But we need to address this issue.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:14 pm. Reply #

Can’t care too much about the Speaker…

Glad to see i’ve upheld the LDV tradition of only one person engaging in the open QT thread…

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:20 pm. Reply #

Stephen being very fair on the speaker issue…

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:22 pm. Reply #

Audience member makes the same(ish) point as Stephen and gets the biggest cheer of the night…

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:25 pm. Reply #

I’ve said it early, but i’ll say it again – scottish labour are humoursly rubbish as is being proved excellently by that drone on the panel. They need a grinning belief-less loon like Blair perhaps, ha ha.

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:28 pm. Reply #

As a Scot living in England – I think this scottish yet british-wide QT has very easily matched average QT quality (not that difficult…) .

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:38 pm. Reply #

Oooh, is it standard practise to comment on This Week on this open thread? I’ll probably just go to bed anyway…

by Steven Ronald on February 28, 2008 at 11:40 pm. Reply #

Oh dear! Steven R, I’ve only just got back from the pub or I’d have joined you in the great empty echoing chamber that is the QT thread…

by Alix on February 28, 2008 at 11:55 pm. Reply #

Overall, I thought Nicol’s performance tonight was solid but unspectacular, with the exception of the Cuba question, which I’ll come on to. Cathy Jamieson was a joke, Goldie did OK (and I agree put the anti-DNA database answer a bit better than Nicol), Nicola Sturgeon is someone I dislike intensely but overall did pretty well.
I just wish that we would put the boot a bit more into George Galloway on occasions like this. He always comes across very well, but he’s a complete bully and a lot of his statements are outrageous (eg his comments about the Taleban tonight).
And on Cuba, this is the answer Nicol should have given, rather than just wittering on about America, the Kennedys and Barack Obama:
“Fidel Castro has been dictator of a one-party state for more than 50 years. Opposition there is stifled, gays have been targeted and trade unions are banned. The only reason Castro has survived in power for so long is that his state has been bankrolled by the Soviet Union and latterly by Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. We should be glad that he is out of power, but concerned that he is just handing power to his brother in the manner of a medieval monarch. Cuba must become a free country again soon, with full democracy as soon as possible. But that will only happen if the USA also changes its policy towards Cuba and ends the economic blockade, which has proven counter-productive by insulating Castro’s regime from the outside world, allowing it to survive while Communist regimes across the globe have fallen.”

by Bernard Salmon on February 29, 2008 at 12:14 am. Reply #

It was more interesting than for a while, but there are some quite strong characters in Scots politics.

Nicol was ok, though I thought (like Bernard) he wasn’t tough enough on Cuba and that he let Annabel Goldie seem to out-liberal us. George Galloway probably made the most telling point of the night when he pointed out how mixed up politics appears these days – the Tory sounded like a liberal, the Nats sounded like old Labour and the (dismal) Labour woman was a total reactionary …


by john on February 29, 2008 at 1:05 am. Reply #

Last night we saw three of the many faces of Mr George Galloway MP.

First we had Galloway the revolutionary, heaping praise on the homophobic Stalinist tyrant, Fidel Castro.

Then we saw Galloway, the partisan Catholic, honest enough to admit that his support for Speaker Martin was grounded in confessional solidarity.

And finally, we were treated to Galloway, the Islamist fellow traveller, for whom the Taliban is a benign and progressive force.

What we didn’t see (and thank goodness for that) is Galloway the egomaniacal libertine who exposed the outline of his genitals on “Big Brother”.

by Sesenco on February 29, 2008 at 2:24 pm. Reply #

Thought Nicol was kind of odd on Cuba. Though a nice wake up call for lefties who might believe LDs have any anti-imperialist analysis in them. Very waffly in general. Goldie was excellent. SNP Sturgeon pretty strong. Galloway = cabaret but his support for Martin was based not just on faith but also on class and serjeant appointment.

I thought the Labour rep was fine though somethingly out gunned and possibly not getting the rub of the green from DD.

by Chris Paul on February 29, 2008 at 2:35 pm. Reply #

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