First up, the Darling of the Noes:
Darling's only hope of matching his opponent (he will never better him) during this exchange and the second one to follow lies in disrupting the flow of debate. The former chancellor is a thoroughly insipid public speaker who engenders no passion or belief in what he is saying. His answers seem learned by rote and his continual blinking as he's delivering them makes him look unconvincing, like an understudy who's just been acquainted with the script owing to the leading man being incapacitated.Is he really that bad?
Then there is the bold Alex:
Salmond's main challenge during this debate will not come from any deft touch or rapier thrust from his opponent. Rather, the biggest obstacle he must overcome is his own self-confidence and sense of self-satisfaction. If he does begin to eviscerate Darling early in the proceedings, he must avoid any showboating or mock-exasperation or that smirking thing that he does like the swot who knows the answer but lets the class bampots make eejits of themselves trying to answer first.
It's not difficult to descend from intellectually robust to mere rodomontade and sometimes Salmond does it, especially when he dismisses sentiments he doesn't like as "bluff and bluster".