Poor argument

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I recorded the independence debate for convenience, but the few snippets I saw on news broadcasts led me to delete it, and I certainly won’t watch the “return leg”.

I don’t care whether Scotland becomes independent or not: our dogma-driven politicians will bungle everything as 
before.

What does concern me is the quality of argument deployed, in which respect I was appalled by Alistair Darling’s new “tough guy” performance.

Personalising an argument is one of the weakest and most dishonest forms of debating.

When Alex Salmond mentioned Scotland getting governments it didn’t vote for, Darling replied that he didn’t vote for “him”, but he was stuck with “him” (not the SNP government). He then belittled the First Minister on the subject of currency by comparing him negatively with an eight-year-old child, who, he claimed, could rattle off the flag description, capital city and currency of foreign countries.

Really? Well, Brazil recently had long-term publicity through the football World Cup. How many readers of this paper, let alone enthusiastic eight-year-old fans, could supply these three details of Brazil?

It may well be that Alex 
Salmond was equally guilty of substandard argument; either way, I take this attitude as an 
insult.

Robert Dow

Ormiston Road

Tranent, East Lothian