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BBC Scotland phone-in hands Labour councillor platform to attack SNP – Towards Indyref2…

BBC Scotland phone-in hands Labour councillor platform to attack SNP

A Scottish Labour councillor was handed a platform by BBC Scotland in order to mount unchallenged attacks on the SNP.

Edinburgh councillor Scott Arthur appeared on a Radio Scotland phone-in programme on Friday morning.  The programme had been discussing the issue of pot-holes on Scottish roads.

Given the opportunity to speak on the show, Arthur was allowed to mount a series of unchallenged attacks on the SNP led Scottish government and an SNP MSP.

Listeners heard the Labour councillor accuse the Scottish government of cutting local authority budgets and leaving them with less cash than they had ten years ago.

He said: “People have to remember that council budgets have been cut every year.

“Edinburgh now has less money than it did around ten years ago, which is unbelievable.

“This year although the Scottish government’s funding from the UK parliament increased, and has tax raising powers, Edinburgh’s looking at around thirty eight million cuts it has to make.”

Arthur also attacked SNP MSP Stuart McMillan, adding: “He is part of the Scottish government, he voted for the cuts to council budgets that results in the roads being the state they are. That needs to be remembered.”


The attacks went unchallenged by the programme presenter who also failed to point out Arthur was a Labour councillor.

Earlier this year Arthur was at the centre of a row after the BBC targeted a pro-independence blogger’s Youtube account.  Videos posted by the Wings Over Scotland accound were removed from Youtube after the BBC claimed copyright infringements.  It emerged the videos had been drawn to the broadcaster’s attention by the Scottish Labour councillor.


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12 thoughts on “BBC Scotland phone-in hands Labour councillor platform to attack SNP

  1. Davy

    I heard this particular show, and it occurred to me listening to it, here is a perfect example of a Xmas tradition.

    It was a perfect represention by councillor Scott Arthur of a ” Xmas Dick ” .

    And you would have to be a dick yersel to believe any of Arthur’s pronunciations, and well-done to the BBC for promoting Xmas bullshit.

  2. Alan Johnson

    That is all very well – but the SNP is missing a trick if it does not take the opportunity to publicly refute these (and any other similar) false accusations at the earliest opportunity. Season of goodwill notwithstanding, they need to go on the defensive and fight their corner!

  3. Jim Draper

    Just a point on Scott Arthur. He delights in calling himself “Professor” as he believes this gives him gravitas. If you check his academic record you’ll find he’s an expert on sewerage and drainage systems …. So he’s good at talking a load of ….

  4. D E BLAIR

    Arthur is given a free reign by the “independent” BBC, again. As for the SNP going on the defence I beg to differ. They should go on the attack.

  5. John M Rudkin

    the snp are guilty of inaction, in letting the bbc carry on regardless, they will keep putting the snp and scotland down, time for a change of leader at the top of the snp hierarchy, this husband and wifey double act is not good for independence, they are far too comfortable sitting in charge without upsetting the apple cart .

    1. Robert Graham

      Aye that’s a winner, change leadership when the winning post is in sight , forgive me if you’re very good suggestion isn’t taken seriously, nice try but no Cigar.

    2. Richard Dido

      I am getting sick of the SNP’s inaction over the continuing BBC bias. It’s played out continuously, and with contempt, and the SNP do nothing about it!!

  6. Robert Graham

    I really do believe the BBC in Scotland presume their target audience is totally dumb and thick

    This particular clip would have their listeners believe austerity is only and has only happened outside Scotland , and the benevolent Westminster Tory government are showering Scotland with money and its this SNP lot that are making people suffer ,give us a bloody break do they really believe people are that stupid ,a rhetorical question ,

    As for this Labour clown whos party saddled us with a parliament building 10 times the estimated cost and 2 years late ,a tram fiasco costing now over 1 billion pounds ,PFI contracts that have to be serviced before a penny is sent on essential services the brass neck of Labour demanding the SNP fix the problems they caused is truly breathtaking ,

    I really wish Nicola Sturgeon would stop giving long detailed answers to questions the opposition fire every week at FMQs , they dont want answers just a wee dig , just hold up a card with PFI on it thats where the money is going courtesy of past Tory & Labour administrations , half of Scots are in the dark as to where the money is going let them know

  7. Fraser

    It would be a full time job for several people at SNP HQ to challenge every mis representation by Unionists. As the BBC won’t challenge untruths then pro indy supporters need to step up to the mark.

    I have challenged Dr Scott on several ocassions over his selective figures and claims of five year cuts to Edinburgh’s council budget which don’t compare like with like.

    Most voters don’t realise that prior to the formation of Police Scotland, Edinburgh used to contribute £46million a year towards policing whereas last year it was only £2.6million.

    While the SNP needs to be more proactive in getting such facts out to members, we all need to be more pro active in challenging false claims by yoons in UKOK press and radio shows in 2019.

  8. gregor

    Does permanent BBC Scotland fixture: Labour councillor Scott Arthur, reflect BBC’s Editorial Guidelines on Impartiality:

    4.4.1: Breadth and Diversity of Opinion

    Across our output as a whole, we must be inclusive, reflecting a breadth and diversity of opinion.  We must be fair and open-minded when examining the evidence and weighing material facts.  We must give due weight to the many and diverse areas of an argument.

    4.4.4: Impartiality and Audiences

    Listening to and engaging with audiences is central to the BBC’s output, from radio phone-ins to user generated content online.  But responses should not be given a wider significance than they merit and we should take care not to misrepresent the relative weight of opinions expressed.  We should also be prepared to apply appropriate scrutiny to audience opinions and ensure that the debate does not appear closed to members of the audience who support a minority view when they have not already made contact.


    Does BBC’s omission of fundamental context, with regards to Arthur’s status as Labour counciler, reflect BBC’s principles on accuracy:

    Accuracy: Principles

    3.2.1: We must do all we can to ensure due accuracy in all our output.

    3.2.2: All BBC output, as appropriate to its subject and nature, must be well sourced, based on sound evidence, thoroughly tested and presented in clear, precise language.  We should be honest and open about what we don’t know and avoid unfounded speculation.  Claims, allegations, material facts and other content that cannot be corroborated should normally be attributed.

    3.2.3: The BBC must not knowingly and materially mislead its audiences.  We should not distort known facts, present invented material as fact or otherwise undermine our audiences’ trust in our content.


  9. JohnW

    I would like to know where Keith Brown and his team are , don’t they see this kind of BBC prejudice is very damaging to the SNP government , people listening believe what they hear , after all it’s coming from the BBC so it must be true according to a lot of people , time the SNP woke up ! .

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