Jimmy Savile, the YouTube tribute

Showaddywaddy, jingle jangle, Jim'll Fix It, Top of the Pops, Clunk Click.

Showaddywaddy, jingle jangle, Jim'll Fix It, Top of the Pops, Clunk Click.{C}

The former DJ and TV presenter Jimmy Savile died at his home in Leeds earlier today, aged 84.

Savile was the first host of Top of the Pops in 1964 but for a certain generation of TV viewer he will be remembered for presenting Jim'll Fix It on a Saturday night.

In the era of three channel television the viewing figures were huge and the postbag, according to this tribute on the BBC website, hit 20,000 letters a week at the height of the programme's popularity.

In a terribly 2011 way, a quick browse on YouTube provides a telling potted history of a career.

Indeed put "Jimmy Savile" (or the more-frequently misspelled "Jimmy Saville") into the video sharing search engine and the auto-complete function does a rather good job of capturing a lifetime in the public eye:

showaddywaddy; jingle jangle; top of the pops; louis theroux; impression; now then now then; jim'll fix it; wrestling; have I got news for you; clunk click.

No mention of his marathon running but not a bad summary. If you're not sure of the references, look them up.

 

Rather than a Jim'll Fix It video, here's a Public Information Film from the same era that has taken on a similarly iconic status. Remember: "Clunk Click, Every Trip":

 

 

Jimmy Savile, 31 October 1926 -- 29 October 2011.

 

Jon Bernstein, former deputy editor of New Statesman, is a digital strategist and editor. He tweets @Jon_Bernstein. 

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Scottish Labour's defeat to the Tories confirms a political transformation

The defining divide is no longer between left and right but between unionist and nationalist.

It was Scotland where Labour's recovery was supposed to begin. Jeremy Corbyn's allies predicted that his brand of left-wing, anti-austerity politics would dent the SNP's hegemony. After becoming leader, Corbyn pledged that winning north of the border would be one of his greatest priorities. 

But in the first major elections of his leadership, it has proved to be Labour's greatest failure. A result that was long thought unthinkable has come to pass: the Conservatives have finished second (winning 31 seats). For the first time since the 1910 election, Labour has finished third (winning 24). Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale stood on a left-wing platform, outflanking the SNP on tax (pledging to raise the top rate to 50p and increase the basic rate by 1p), promising to spend more on public services and opposing the renewal of Trident. But rather than advancing, the party merely retreated.

Its fate confirms how Scottish politics has been realigned. The defining divide is no longer between left and right but between unionist and nationalist. With the SNP as the only major pro-independence party, the Tories, led by the pugnacious Ruth Davidson, framed themselves as the pro-UK alternative - and prospered. In contrast, Dugdale refused to rule out supporting a second referendum and suggested that MPs and MSPs would be free to campaign for secession. The result was that Scottish Labour was left looking dangerously irrelevant. "Identity politics. Labour doesn't get it," a shadow minister told me. Its socialist pitch counted for little in a country that remains ideologically closer to England than thought. The SNP has lost its majority (denying it a mandate for a second referendum) - an outcome that the electoral system was always designed to make impossible. But its rule remains unthreatened. 

Corbyn's critics will seek to pin the baleful result on him. "We turned left and followed Jeremy's politics in Scotland, which far from solving our problems, pushed us into third," a senior opponent told me. But others will contend that a still more left-wing leader, such as Neil Findlay, is needed. Dugdale is personally supportive of Trident and was critical of Corbyn before his election. Should she be displaced, the party will be forced to elect its sixth leader in less than five years. But no one is so short-sighted as to believe that one person can revive the party's fortunes. Some Corbyn critics believe that a UK-wide recovery is a precondition of recovery north of the border. At this juncture, they say, SNP defectors would look anew at the party as they contemplate the role that Scottish MPs could play in a Westminster government. But under Corbyn, having become the first opposition to lose local election seats since 1985, it is yet further from power. 

In Scotland, the question now haunting Labour is not merely how it recovers - but whether it ever can. 

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.