Sauce for the goose ...
I have been unble to resist a wry smile at the bitter complaints by Wendy Alexander, who has just resigned as Labour leader on the Scottish Assembly, and other Labour spokespersons, accusing the SNP of a campaign of personal abuse and vilification against her.
Insofar as there is any truth in the Labour complaints that the SNP have seized any opportunity to portray their opponents as corrupt, the SNP have simply copied this practice straight out of the New Labour tactics manual.
The tactic which Labour is now complaining bitterly about when they find themselves on the receiving end from the SNP is precisely the tactic which New Labour deployed in the 1990's to shred the reputation of everyone in the then government. It is the same tactic which New Labour has continued to employ in office against anyone who disagrees with them, from nonagarian pensioners who express concern about the NHS to academics who express concern about the workability of ID cards to rail crash survivors/families who are investigated for anything which can be used against them politically. New Labour has never lost an opportunity to launch a personal attack on their opponents rather than engage with the issues.
We now have a political culture in which denoucing the integrity of your political opponents is a routine political tactic. What is worse is that with so much mud flying around, some of it sticks even to the innocent. However, since New Labour were the primary instigators of this culture it is a bit rich for them to squeal like a stuck pig when it is deployed against them. Particularly since a number of the Labour politicians who have come to grief did so by breaking rules which the present Labour government itself enacted and has boasted about.
The only way to deal with this situation is for all parties to work harder to comply with the rules, especially the ones they passed themselves. And MPs, MSPs, and all other politicians must expected to be treated the same as people in any other walk of life would be.