By Martin Kelly
A leading No campaigner is facing calls to apologise after posting a foul mouthed outburst against First Minister Alex Salmond.
Mike Dailly, who is a representative of the anti-independence Better Together campaign, tweeted “We have an arsehole as First Minister, let’s be honest …”

The message brought rebukes form senior politicians from the pro-independence Yes campaign.

Keith Brown, the Scottish Government Transport Minister replied: “…perhaps you could make your argument without the personal abuse?”

Scottish Greens co-convenor Patrick Harvie tweeted: “I’m *very* far from being a Salmond fan, but Mike, you can do better than this.”

Mr Dailly has written articles on behalf of the No campaign and has also represented the cross party organisation in debates on independence.

The outburst from Dailly, who is a solicitor with the Govan Law Centre, followed a bizarre series of tweets from the Better Together campaigner in which he claimed to be compiling a list of people who follow pro-Yes site Wings Over Scotland.

“Am working on publishing a list for the national media of who supports @RevStu on social media – here we go.” he said.

Dailly later insisted the list claim had been a joke and posted another puzzling message which said: “Cybernats – I beat you 😉 x”.

The attack on the First Minister by a leading No campaigner comes barely a week after Yes supporters were heavily criticised after apparently posting offensive messages aimed at a mother who was part of the Scottish Labour Shadow cabinet.

Newsnet Scotland asked Better Together to comment on Mr Dailly’s outburst, but we have yet to receive any reply.

[Newsnet Comment – Today Newsnet Scotland features in at least two Sunday newspapers.  The stories relate to the latest Duggy Dug video which looks at a future Scotland after a No vote.  The video is reproduced below.

Newsnet Scotland were not contacted by Scotland on Sunday to comment on the claims by Labour MP Margaret Curran.  A request from the Scottish Mail on Sunday appeared in one of our gmail accounts early this morning – there was no attempt made at contacting us at our ‘contact’ email address.

Yesterday Newsnet Scotland responded to accusations levelled against us by Better Together by publishing an article which was our top story from early yesterday evening up until and beyond midnight.  It highlighted the fact that the phrase which has so vexed Labour and the Better Together officials was actually coined by former Labour Deputy leader John Prescott.  If journalists were interested in our response and the background of the ‘ermine in vermine’ phrase, then it was easy to find.

The claims from Labour, and indeed Better Together, are now par for the course as Unionists seek to demonise all who challenge their views.  What we are witnessing now is an attempt to portray the Yes campaign and others who may challenge the No-campaign narrative, as somehow sexist, myisogynist and anti-female.  It follows descriptions of Alex Salmond as a dictator and attempts by Alistair Darling to link the SNP to Nazism.

Last week Newsnet Scotland published an article which highlighted some appalling online comments from Scottish Labour politicians which never appeared in national newspapers.  We can add to that Labour MP Ian Davidson’s claim that Scots commemorate Bannockburn only because English people were murdered or Anas Sarwar’s description of the Scottish Government as a dictatorship.]


2014-06-22 09:03

Having lost the case for Better Together they are now trying the British Empire’s classic way of dealing with the restless natives.

Cut off the head of the snake, divide and rule, and close down the means by which the natives communicate, are the order of the day.
2014-06-22 09:26

There are 87 days left before the referendum, 12 weeks, and yet Better Together are still setting the agenda, and increasingly the tone, of the debate.

At what point does Unionism answer the McCrone Report?
At what point does Unionism answer for the UK’s antithesis to Europe?
At what point does Unionism answer for the UK’s lack of resolve over renewables?
At what point does Unionism atone for the destruction of Scotland’s industrial capacity and communities?

Be aware people, Better Together will be quite happy for is to be trading tit for tat insults all the way to the vote because it distracts people from the real agenda.

If you want to hurt Better Together, take every opportunity to pin them down on their positive reasons for the Union. Pin them down on Norway’s oil fund. Where is ours? Don’t waffle, don’t prevaricate, don’t duck the issue or change the subject. Just tell me.
They insult us, because they have nothing to say.
2014-06-22 18:56

Agreed. This is starting to bother me. Quite a bit, in fact.

It’s all very well continually responding to BT’s attempts to spread fear, uncertanty and doubt, but unless someone somewhere has one heck of a ‘cunning plan’, we are leaving it late in the day for convincing the undecideds.

2014-06-22 09:37

You can’t help feeling that education is wasted on some people.
2014-06-22 10:40

Slightly O/T but lots of folk enjoying themselves at yesterdays Bannockburn 700 march…/
Lets hope we get 2 or 3 thousand turnout for next Sundays BBC protest at Pacific Quay. Stirling is currently awash with Union jacks on Council signs advertising Armed Forces day.
2014-06-22 13:35

Alistair – That’s (in reality) Tory controlled Lab/Con coalition in Stirling Council for you. Spending up to £500,000 of Stirling Council taxpayer’s money on this ‘free’ event in a blatant political attempt to diminish Bannockburn 700.

One Councillor only made the decision, then presented it as a fait accompli to the rest of the council. You can bet that the independent audit taking place into the decision making process on that one won’t be reporting anytime before the referendum.

2014-06-22 22:48

Here is a prime example:…/…

2014-06-22 10:40

I care not a bean what Mr Daily has said about the FM. The FM is well capable dealing with childish playground nonsense.

I agree with Breeks. Perhaps Mr Daily and the rest of BT can answer some questions on their answer to the social housing problems we face. Or perhaps they would care to discuss the huge democratic deficit existent within the current treaty of union? How about re-vitalising of the industries and manufacturing base their governance and management brought so low? Any plans on how to tackle the shame that is child poverty in Scotland?

These are issues discussed in our parliament and WP right now you know. So any time the opposition feel like bringing out some literature dealing with future vision and real proposals instead of past glories and rapidly fading achievements would be good. In their own time.

The debate is about the future, not the past.
2014-06-22 11:09

“Dailly later insisted the list claim had been a joke”
No doubt he is relying on the “Ian Gray Defence of Darling”
It fails as Jokes are usually finny or at least witty
2014-06-22 11:27

Maybe we should plan something like a Newsnet Scotland Sunday Supplement? Take one defining issue central to the issue of independence and do an in depth article about it.
Take McCrone, but go far beyond what it said, and speculate how different Scotland would be if it had a large oil fund. On what specifically might we have spent the revenues raised? What does Norway enjoy which we make do without?

If we as a nation cannot be aspirational now, then when?

An aspirational blueprint for Scotland’s independent news media could be dynamite.

Who cares if Better Together rubbish every word? That’s what they do. But that’s ALL they do. Boring! Boring!

Maybe hook up with Michael Greenwell or Derek Bateman for their podcast expertise, and perhaps get the Livefeed people to contribute some debate coverage to a Sunday ‘magazine’ NNS.

Get ourselves, all of us, better coordinated for these final furlongs.
2014-06-22 11:43

We shouldn’t forget Wings. Rev Stu was pretty good on TV. Sharp as a knife but came across very well. Maybe invite him to do a column or video diary of the weeks events? Same for Derek Bateman, Blair Jenkins, even the FM himself. Lesley Riddoch, Business for Scotland. Common Weal, RIC, etc..
87 days gives us 12 Sundays. Say we lose 4 to getting co-ordinated, that gives us 8 Sunday Supplements to produce. Is that such a labour of Hercules? Wouldn’t it be worth it supposing it was?

What do people think? Anybody game?
2014-06-22 13:29

I’d like to see him with a spot on Derek Bateman’s broadcasting.…/

Wasn’t quite sure why he had Steven Purcell on, but there you go.

2014-06-22 11:49

Mr Dailly wants to take more water with whatever he has been drinking this weekend. He seems to forget he is a Human Rights Lawyer. I somehow think he may be short of work with this sort of outburst.
2014-06-22 12:14

I am heartily sick of all these attacks whether they be on the FM, or independence supporters. I see people tiptoing around issues now scared to share an opinion for fear of being called a Cybernat, Nazi, Virus or some other ridiculous claim.

I’m also unimpressed with the official Yes campaign which seems to sit meekly in the background allowing Wings, Newnet et al to take up the strain, demolish BT arguments and ask the ‘difficult’ questions.

OK the MSM are biased but the official Yes campaign needs to ‘get the finger out’.
2014-06-22 12:36

Ignore him. It’s not worth worrying about as I’m sure this kind of rubbish will put a few more undecided in our direction.
I agree with Breeks about cooperation between the sites he lists. It would be good to hear the people who we just read speaking on Bateman. I’d also like to hear the headlines of all the pro Indy sites plus the Sunday Herald on a Sunday Bateman. And it would make the money go farther.
2014-06-22 13:16

I find it very sad that some professional people can try to bring the debate down to this low level. I expected better.

I hope Mr Dailly was just having a bad few days and will bring himself up to a sensible debating level soon.
2014-06-22 17:07

I don’t care if he was having a bad few weeks , there is no excuse for such abusive stupidity and certainly not from a person in his position. I might excuse the ignorant and uneducated but assuming this chappie didn’t just buy a degree off the internet he should know better.
No manners , no class .

2014-06-24 20:18

Duggy Dug is great but Vermin in Ermine was very silly and will not bring undecideds to a Yes vote. It’s the same on Wings, people need to modify their language.

I also agree with other comments regarding the Yes campaign, it is uninspiring.

The above Duggy Dug (without the vermin in ermine) would be a great TV ad.

[Admin: The phrase ‘vermin in ermine’ emanated from within the Labour party. It was uttered by former Deputy Leader John Prescott. Its inclusion is satire – Prescott later accepted a peerage.]
2014-06-24 20:54

I know where you’re coming from, but considering the hurdles YES has to overcome in the media, it would have taken immense resources to be heard above the cynical unionist media.
I think YES realised very early on the TV and news media was always going to be an uphill struggle, so threw itself into leafleting, meetings, YES groups and doorstep discussions. I wouldn’t say the Unionist media has damaged YES marketing, but it has most certainly stifled it & dissipated momentum.

But, on the upside, the YES iconography is very strong in my opinion. The branding has evolved but the meaning is legible and concise, and has been so consistently. Just compare it to Better Together UKOK NO Borders NO thanks; one damp squib after another, muddled, and relaunched every other month.

When you sit down and accept that YES cannot rely on TV to reach the people, nor can it rely on newspapers, what would you suggest YES does differently?
2014-06-24 21:31

If you want to check up on YES, check their website for events near you. When I checked forthcoming events within 10 miles of my address, there were 2. Yikes! But, when I changed the radius to 50 miles, there were 165. Not bad considering I’m near the Border with England, so half of that 50 mile radius will naturally be quite barren for YES events.

Better Together for comparison have 25 events within the same 50 mile radius.

That’s just a snapshot, but pretty telling all the same. Better Together also include 2 telephone marketing days as events.

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