A UNIVERSITY has launched an inquiry into the behaviour of one of its lecturers after he used his pro-nationalist blog to mount a vicious attack on the Scottish Secretary, Jim Murphy.I’ve had the pleasure of Wardog’s company here on several occasions; one or two of his comments have been genuinely funny, most however were puerile, a couple were abusive enough for me to have to delete*. Given the, let's be polite here, "shakiness" of his arguments though I’d have honestly put him down as a sixteen year-old internat warrior high on adrenalin and quite possibly the Buckfast rather than a fully-fledged grown-up and presumably intelligent lecturer.
Robert Gordon University is investigating the online activities of Bruce Newlands, a lecturer in construction technology at the Aberdeen institution. Newlands, who writes under the alias of Wardog, used his blog to call Labour MP Murphy "a c***"
while complaining that he had "barged in front of other MPs to get his mug shown on TV".
Newlands, 31, is also alleged to have made unfounded claims about Richard Baker, Labour's justice spokesman, and Willie Bain, Labour winner of the Glasgow North East by-election.
Last night, an RGU spokesman said: "Given that we are now investigating this situation, it would be inappropriate to make any further comment."
Having said all that and whilst also acknowledging that libel laws obviously apply as much to the blogosphere as to the MSM, it is still a bit sad to see someone’s career possibly being put on the line because of inconsequential nonsense he’s being pumping online to an audience of, at the very most, hundreds.
The partys’ reaction to the whole storm in a kennel is exactly what you’d expect:
An SNP spokesman said: "All such offensive comments by individuals are to be totally deplored – whether it be this, or indeed the one made by Wendy Alexander's spin doctor when she was Labour leader."
Yeah it’s bad...but, hey, whatabout...
And Labour online, holier than thou?
A Scottish Labour spokesperson said: "We hope other political parties exhort their bloggers and fellow travellers to express their political views in an appropriate way, or else disassociate themselves quickly."
*My better half has just pointed out that Wardog's last contribution on here was a "thank-you" for a post I did alerting folk to a BBC portrait gallery of the soldiers of the Great War. So, not quite the one-dimensional character I've perhaps painted him as here.