Panelist puts much-needed spark back into Question Time

Just when I was beginning to lose interest in Question Time and its dreary, predictable liberalism, along comes a panelist who says what he feels, and in doing so blows away the cobwebs of a show that has been dying on its feet of late.

Writer Will Self may be seen by most as a thoroughly obnoxious piece of work, but his latest performance was something to behold, as he nailed every issue from terrorism in Kenya to the reaction from the energy companies to being capped, and whole lot more beside.

The reaction to Self’s on the button assessments was quite mind blowing in itself, not least for the toe-curling sanctimony from Michael Gove, supplemented by Douglas Alexander who came across as a liberal facist and nothing like a future foreign secretary.

Throw in a pathetic member of UKIP and a sad reactionary woman journalist, and but for Self’s cynical, but straight forward common sense you would have had another wasted late night in front of the TV.

Depressingly, all the others were hell-bent on playing the British card when what we really need are some genuine internationalists who can think outside the cosy little box of the UK and all its narrowness, as portrayed by David Dimbleby’s little chums, Will Self excepted.

Encouragingly for those who actually like our panelists to tell it as it is, the Uxbridge audience far from rounding on Self, seemed happy for the writer to expose the cracks in the system, perpetuated by Messrs Gove and Alexander who were I am sad to say both educated in schools in Scotland, though I wouldn’t read too much into that facile observation.

Finally and far away from the limited world of the BBC, it looks like the season of mellow fruitfulness is upon us, bringing a little edge to the mornings, followed no doubt by autumn rain, and probably worse.

All of which is bad news for commuters to Aberdeen who rely on buses to take them into the city and back.

In particular I feel heart sorry for those of you who have to catch a bus into the centre of Ellon before catching a bus bound for Aberdeen. Nothing could be worse than hanging about the town centre waiting for a city-bound bus early on a winter morning.

The failure of Stagecoach to sycronise services in an extended summer was almost acceptable, but less so on cold, chilly mornings.

In fairness to the bus providers it is not easy to please every customer, though in the end of the day, it is shareholders who seem to come first. It was ever thus.