"Because of the list system, Scotland’s version of proportional representation whereby seats can be won on second preferences with very few votes, virtually anybody can get themselves elected."
Actually, even under the list system, in order to be elected, you need to attract a certain amount of votes. Ms Hjul may wish to note that this is usually described as democracy.
"Imagine if, say, the Greens (seven at present) and two or so Independents and the pensioners’ MSP and a few other disaffected single-issue loons who may enter the parliament in May all decided to unite beneath a Sheridan banner.
It is not such an unlikely scenario. He persuaded seven jurors to believe him in the face of a large body of evidence against him. If he was able to do that he should be able to convince Holyrood’s waifs and strays, mostly politically inexperienced, that he is on their side.
If he once cajoled members of the famously fractious hard left to follow him, a handful of ambitious Greens would be child’s play. In a parliament with no overall majority and no parties inclined to form coalitions with each other, this rump could exercise a control way beyond its capabilities.
You only have to listen to the arguments of the Green MSP Patrick Harvie, who believes the Scottish parliament’s role is to bring America to its knees, to appreciate how debilitating this would be for devolution."
Contrary to Ms Hjul's opinion, this seems a wildly unlikely scenario. Why would the greens (or independents like the blessed Margo) agree to defer to Mr Sheridan? There has never been an overall majority in the Scottish Parliament. If the greens have chosen up to now to pursue their own path, why would they change? Especially when more influential alliances with the SNP or the LibDems beckon.
"An anti-Bush, anti-Blair, anti-war, ban the bomb, pro-Hezbollah, pro-bicycling tendency, eager to feed the world and express its global citizenship, would be very bad news indeed for the vast majority of Scots who once believed devolution was a good idea."
And would a pro-Bush, pro-Blair, pro-war, pro-nuclear arms, pro-Israeli, pro-car, selfish, protectionist tendency be better news?