23 July 2011

Scottish politics

We have our own Parliament in Edinburgh, at a place called Holyrood, which, for information, is just north of Brigadoon. If you haven't been there and want to paint a mental picture for yourself, think of the glamour of Hollywood - then think of the exact opposite. With kilts.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me set the scene. The main political parties in Scotland are the SNP, Labour, and The Proclaimers. In addition to the main parties, a number of smaller parties have had some success, because we in Scotland have a system of proportional representation. 'What is this fictional form of voting,' I hear you cry, 'Is it something J.K. Rowling wrote of in the marvellous Harry Potter books?' No, it's real! You may have heard that PR is a concept that's as likely to work as Europe, but it does. As a result there are representatives at Holyrood from minority parties, such as the Greens... and the Conservatives. I should clarify that the situation for the Tories in Scotland is very different to that down south. In Scotland you're as likely to see a Tory as you are fruit. The majority party is the Scottish National Party, headed up by First Minister Alec Salmond. He's a tremendous orator, but he's got the unfortunate tendency, when he becomes passionate, to sound increasingly like a Dalek. 'Westminster must bow to the wishes of the Scottish people. Exterminate!'

- Susan Calman, The Now Show, Radio 4, 1 July 2011.

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