Alan Cochrane: My part in his downfall
Taking the title of your new book from the classic, Adolph Hitler: My Part In His Downfall is a brave move. However, judging by the excerpts published in the Telegraph this week, Alan Cochrane has actually managed to produce a work of literature that is more absurd than the Spike Milligan original. It is a particularly devilish satirical move to replace the words Aldolph Hitler with Alex Salmond, a person who hasn’t actually suffered a downfall. A tactic I have borrowed for this blog. Admittedly, the lack of downfall experienced by Alan Cochrane is because the only thing ever elevated about him is his ego, and possibly his blood pressure.
Hitler, a sad and defeated figure, shot himself in his Berlin bunker as the world he tried to create crumbled around him. And, as Milligan suggests in his book, humour may have been a big factor in keeping the allied spirits up and may have contributed a small part to the costly victory. Salmond, on the other hand has not shot himself as far as I am aware. He has voluntarily moved aside to let his younger lieutenant take over. He handed over the leadership of the party to Sturgeon at the time it is the strongest it has ever been. It now has over 100,000 members. The polls suggest it is on course to win the next Scottish Election. And it is predicted that the SNP are going to decimate Scottish Labour in May and could hold the balance of power at Westminster in the next term. Salmond will be there leading that group. Polls also suggest that people wanted more from the Smith Commission and that a majority would now vote for independence. A majority are also open to a second referendum. The demographics are bad for the Union. The No vote was older and was more likely to receive news via the traditional way – a broken and corrupt media in cahoots with a broken and corrupt kleptocrasy. A media that Cochrane represents. It is the coming downfall of those systems that Cochrane has failed to witness.
Salmond lost the battle of the first referendum although from reading Cochrane’s diary excerpts it is difficult to see what part he played in this. His main contribution in bringing down Salmond was having lunch, albeit with various members of the ruling classes. That’s where most of his revelations come from. One of the most profound is that Cochrane himself can’t handle a curry with John Reid early in the day. Well, that’s understandable, Reid does give me gastroenteritis and I only ever see him on television. However, if you are going to eat your way to victory you have to take indigestion in your stride. He reports no such ill effects after gorging on Maggie Darling’s fish lasagne. The superlatives he uses to describe her culinary skills are overshadowed only by the ones used to convey his sycophantic love for David Cameron. I wouldn’t be surprised if DC, as AC refers to him, didn’t have to order a protection officer to prise the besotted hack from his teat.
At the John Reid curry session we are treated to the revelation that the Bulldog had in the past pushed Gordon Brown up against a wall and threatened to punch him unless The Great Clunking Fist stopped talking about conspiracies. That’s the tried and tested way to reassure someone. Kinda sums up BetterTogether though. If you can’t reassure them, threaten them.
Eating isn’t the only weapon in Cochrane’s defence of the realm armoury. In what would have come as a surprise to Pliny The Elder, who was referring to Britian two thousand years ago, Cochrane states:
“I’m delighted that separation was comprehensively defeated and that my family and I are to be allowed to remain British”
I guess the Better Together victory was conclusive in the same way that my 2:2 honours degree was conclusive. Although to be fair, I didn’t put any effort into that and the UK establishment threw the kitchen sink at this Phyrric victory. What is conclusive is that Cochrane doesn’t know what Britain is. Or maybe he thought that post Independence the Scottish government had plans to detach the northern chunk of Britain and tow it to Scandinavia. That said, he was worried about some of his family becoming foreigners. A conflict of interest for anyone who works for the Telegraph.
He also, and somewhat worryingly for a man who has a passing resemblance to Peter Sutcliffe, suggests that Brian Cox was not a good person to be working for the Yes campaign due to his frightening portrayal of Hannibal Lecter. This failure to separate reality from fiction is evident in almost every word that he has ever penned.
When Cochrane speaks of Salmond’s downfall what he really means is that No won the referendum. However, as Salmond has already stated, many No votes were just deferred Yes votes. The Union is now on its last chance. And given the paucity of The Vow, the reverting of the state to 1930’s levels and the spectre of leaving the EU, it doesn’t seem to be taking this chance very seriously.
Maybe because he is too busy defeating Salmond by the medium of lunch he fails to see that it is his side who are about to suffer a downfall. His old corrupt media ways are slowly dying. Conniving with politicians is not the job of a journalist. The job of The Third Estate is to scrutinise them. If history does remember Cochrane, which it won’t, it will remember him as someone who failed in his duty as a journalist. Who collaborated with power to produce nonsense articles designed to scare the Scottish people into making a decision that was to their detriment. A man who had a minute roll in delaying Independence. A son of Dundee, a city of Yes, who sided with the Old Etonians. A man who held the world-view of those who have presided over our current woes above the positive vision supported by his native city. A man who has benefited by being a tool of power as opposed to being an auditor of it.
The days when the mainstream media can skew elections are numbered. The Yes movement is rising. We have learnt from our mistakes. The demographics are changing. As time progresses, the power of all of the traditional media will continue to diminish. And new media will continue to rise. There will be a second referendum. And when this happens, many of the older people who were influenced by Cochrane’s ilk will no longer be with us. Many more still, who changed to No at the last minute due to the bile printed in the mainstream rags will not be fooled again. And there will be many younger voters, who were not eligible to vote in the first referendum and they will be getting their information from different sources. I cannot wait for this victory. Although, he didn’t have far to descend, it is great to be contributing to Alan Cochrane’s downfall. He’ll probably be too busy having lunch with his Imperial Masters to notice.
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