I have long since formed my views on nuclear weapons. Every day I set out on the road of late I see the effects of the latest huffing and puffing, with pump prices on the rise in the wake of the ending of oil supplies from Iran, which was a direct response to Westminster on comments about nuclear development.
Closer to home I read earlier this week of a very real threat from our own nuclear arsenal. It is a subject largely ignored by our media. The Herald seem to have been alone in drawing such matters to our attention. Should we be surprised that The Scotsman and the BBC have overlooked this one? I guess not, for bucking against The Establishment just will not do.
It is good to see some hints at a change in direction from The Herald. Perhaps the fall in circulation and in advertising revenue is beginning to hurt and they are beginning to explore what may be partially behind that. And whilst on the subject of the MSM I see that Murdoch is going back into the Sunday tabloid market, no surprise there then, with the launch this weekend of the Sunday Sun. I’m not sure if a few short months are enough to dispel the toxicity left behind by the News of the World, especially as Leveson continues, arrests are still being made, even within The Empire of the Sun, and there is much more to come to light yet.
Murdoch though may have his eyes on a greater prize. I have no doubt that his Sunday red-top will become an instant topseller, and what a sad indictment that is of our society. In advance of the launch he has been extolling the skills of our First Minister, or encouraging us to set out on that road to Freedom. He uses Twitter and it gets instant publicity. Eight short words and there’s a few hundred thousand papers sold.
He may be many things but Murdoch is no fool. He sees the way the land is lying and has set out his stall. The greater prize is likely to be broadcasting rights and not newspaper sales. For 2014 may well be the start of a negotiation between Holyrood and Westminster and broadcasting in Scotland is very much on the agenda. Interesting times indeed, though I’d like to think that we will not have any chance of a McFox News thrust upon us, match as I loathe our present state-funded arrangement.
Also up for grabs, when the time comes, is what I set out to blether about – Nuclear, weapons of that ilk, WMDs. Currently they rest within peddaling distance of Grasshopper Towers (OK, that’s a stretch of the imagination but a younger and fitter me could do it). I started with a warning over leaks and safety, investment and timing. Aside from all that there’s the sheer scale of the cost of renewal, measured against our current level of impoverishment. So it is timely that I started my reading today with a reminder of the need for us to have these WMDs.
Times have changed, and are changing yet, quickly, and not just in these shores. I have many friends who remain of the view that they like the ‘comfort’ of hosting a deterrent. An independent Scotland will be no threat to anyone and will participate in no-one’s illegal wars. Now where are these submarines and warheads to go next? I don’t really mind, but I know with absolute certainty where I do not want them to be. Do you?