Stand up for accountability

I’ve written today to the broadcasters and the Newspaper Society which includes all the main daily titles in Scotland, asking them to join together to make a combined approach to the Prime Minister urging him to take part in a televised debate with the First Minister. I enclose a copy of the letter.

I don’t think we should meekly accept the situation and I am astonished at the lack of a lion’s roar from all Scots that this is the Prime Minister’s duty. It is a snub to all Scotland, Unionist and Nationalist, and if our media truly speak for us all, I think they should at the very least be telling the PM that this is a slight which does him no favours. I can’t imagine his heroes, Mrs Thatcher or Churchill, turning down the chance to argue for Britain against a Scottish Nationalist. In fact, I don’t think John Major would have turned it down either. Our media executives should be demanding the appropriate level of importance to a defining moment in the history of Scotland and Britain. If Mr Cameron has his own political reasons for demurring, that only emphasises the poor state of the UK. But that cannot be permitted as an excuse for ducking his responsibilities. I’ll let you know what I hear in due course. (Probably a letter asking: Who are YOU?)

Dear Editor


I am writing to ask if you think there is a case for a concerted initiative by editors to ask the Prime Minister to reconsider his decision not to participate in a televised head-to-head debate with the First Minister ahead of the referendum next September.

We all have our political views but when the existence of the United Kingdom is at stake, it appears to be a striking omission for the elected head of the British Government to decline an invitation to present himself before the Scottish public in debate with his opposite number.

I suspect even Unionists will consider this a snub to the Scots as it gives the impression the PM does not attach due importance to Scotland’s role in the Union if he relinquishes his obvious duty of leading for the UK in what will be a key moment. Does not his reluctance diminish Scotland’s standing? Editors have influence and collectively might be able to persuade him of the value of taking on Mr Salmond.

A head-to-head television debate would also be a major media event of benefit to all platforms in Scotland and would be of global significance projecting this important part of our national debate worldwide.

I am sending this to the Scottish Newspapers Society, the BBC and STV.


Kind regards


Derek W Bateman


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0 thoughts on “Stand up for accountability

  1. Murray McCallum

    John Major did have direct talks with Sinn Fein and the Provisional IRA to kick start the NI peace process. I personally think that took courage.

    I can’t see how Cameron can ever be held in any regard if he is not prepared to visibly defend what he says he values. Otherwise it’s all just empty rhetoric.

  2. Breaking News UKPM union party leader won’t debate as Nats do Tory hatchet job for them.

  3. Nats are busting up the people.
    “The union is finished!” they say, “we don’t need them down south”, no good to us, holding us back, and we never vote Tory – the bogey that is cause of all our problems. And we’re much better Europeans….”

    Nats are busting up the people.
    “Look! Britain won’t come out for us”, they say “the party of the union won’t speak up for us, they don’t seem to give a toss ‘turning down the chance to argue for Britain against a Scottish Nationalist….at this key moment’”.

    Breaking News UKPM union pty leader won’t debate as Nats do Tory hatchet job for them.

    More Breaking News EU bureaucrats will be using their toothpicks on the pips of Scottish ‘independence’ before brunch.

    • Who are you exactly? unionlovebug someone of substance or a Labour member/associate? Never mind, it’ll all come out in the wash….won’t it?

      Thanks Derek, another good one.

  4. George Campbell

    Whilst I am in favour of a head to head between Salmond and Cameron ( where I know the latter would be thrashed), I feel we should be emphasising the refusal as more than a snub to Scotland. You Derek, described Salmond as Cameron’s opposite number, but that’s not true. The UK is the recognised authority in the eyes of the world ( much as I hope that ends), whereas Scotland has all the status of a Federal region. Cameron’s refusal is therefore based on the grounds that they are NOT equal in status, and as Scots we should be proclaiming his assumed superior position from the rooftops!

    • Very subtle, George. You’re far too bright for this blog. I don’t think you’ll get Mr C to admit he’s superior, but wouldn’t that be grand? D

      Sent from my iPad


      • Roibert a Briuis

        Well since the ultra bright Nicholarse C made Coward Dave look like an out of touch numpty the last time they had a head to head debate, can you seriously believe Coward Dave would ever contemplate walking into the Scottish Lions Den with Alex Salmond? He would get eaten alive very very quickly and this would be watched by millions…in an instant the Bitter Together lot would be blown out of the water and the YES campaign given the air time and the exposure it is being denied at the moment.


        I have no time for Coward Dave but even if he is that stupid to want to take on Alex his advisers would explain that he was going to be mauled alive……..tis just like his promise of a referendum in the EU……………no chance of him allowing that until he knows he will get the answer that he wants.

    • Roibert a Briuis

      POSTED elsewhere

      I was watching Pravda (2) ooops SKY News, the clone version of the Badly Biased Corporation at lunchtime and Coward Dave accepted an invitation to do a televised debate with the other party leaders pre the next general election explaining how IMPORTANT televised debates were and how he was looking forward to taking part.

      David Cameron has told Sky News he is ready to take part in TV debates ahead of the next general election but wants them to happen earlier. – Mr Cameron said there would be “negotiation” about how the debates would be organised but said that he was committed to being involved. – “I felt that while they were very good, and full credit to Sky for championing them” .

      The Prime Minister earlier indicated to Sky News he would not be happy for UKIP leader Nigel Farage to be involved in the clashes, despite the party’s popularity. “These debates should be about people who have a prospect of being prime minister – that is what people really want to see: what would the Government do,” he said.

      OOOOPS forgot what you said last week Coward Dave – big surprise not.

      How seriously worrying is it that we need to watch RT and Al Jazeera to get any real balanced reporting and news without any distorting spin……I watched RT the other week with Sophie Shevardnadze interviewing Hans Blix and it was like night and day, one question one answer no interrupting and when Sophie slipped up and asked two questions Hans quietly and politely said please just one question at a time and Sophie apologised and continues without any issues…….Paxo and ALL the BBC starstruck excuses for interviewers eat your heart out – or watch and learn how properly interview people and not to be a propagandist that Paul Joseph Goebbels would have been proud of ……………….IF ONLY

  5. The replies I await

  6. If David Cameron only wants to debate with “..people who have a prospect of being prime (ie first) minister then what’s his problem?

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