THIS column was filed ahead of the first election results, yet it is possible to say even at this early stage that the big winner is constitutional change.

Why? Because it is the issue that all the parties talked about.

In the case of Unionists, this election was entirely about preventing constitutional change.

Of course, the constitution for them may only be changed by Westminster, for Westminster.

Whatever. It is a major strategic mistake in warfare and in politics to fight on ground chosen by your opponents.

Appeals to “fight indyref2” speak eloquently to this gross misjudgement. As Sun Tzu said in the Art of War: “Those skilled at making the enemy move do so by creating a situation to which he must conform; they entice him with something he is certain to take, and with lures of ostensible profit they await him in strength.”

Even to use indyref terminology concedes the argument.

To compound the issue, it is plainly nuts to promote your opponent in your own leaflets and propaganda.

Nicola Sturgeon must have been delighted to get more coverage from her opposition than she did in the mass media.

Please do not misunderstand me, I am not saying negative campaigning does not work. It does.

Indeed, I am of the view that the SNP does not do nearly enough of it.

But, and it is a big but, it works best in shoring up the base vote. So, in tight races it can make a real difference.

However, when it is used to excess and to the detriment of all else it also says of its proponents: “We have nothing to offer except negativity.”

Elections won on heavily negative propaganda tend to produce short-term success. Over time, supporters tend to drift away because they yearn for positivity.

The result is that negative campaigners are increasingly reliant on the mass media to keep voters.

They may also find themselves facing another election within a fairly short time.

Change to the constitution is now front and central in both UK and Scottish politics, and this is unlikely to change any time soon.

Expect to see serious efforts made to bring about major constitutional change advanced by Westminster.

Commissions will be formed, and a great many words will be expended. It is likely that none of this great effort will produce anything that does not militate against the wishes of the common good.

Westminster is beyond reform.

Here is a quick test that anyone can use to decide if constitutional reform at Westminster is genuine. Is the first past the post (FPTP) electoral system changing?

If not, then nothing much will be achieved.

FPTP keeps the so-called two major parties together. People who loath and detest each other are forced to co-habit because the system militates against any real opposition within parties.

In a fair electoral system, the two main parties would split into four or more, thereby offering real choice to the voters.

And at the end of the day progressive UK constitutional reform will be too little, too late.

However, this election has shown that amongst some middle-class Scots there are signs of a sea change in attitudes.

THERE is growing evidence in the public prints and in private conversations that some, perhaps with more to follow, have crossed the Rubicon to an acceptance that the UK is a failed state.

They may not immediately warm to independence, at least in the short term, but many increasingly accept it is now a binary choice. And this matters.

Remember the old adage: “Revolutions do not happen when the poor march, but when the lawyers do.”

For them, and others of like mind who are swithering, a Scottish constitution that spells out their rights and protections in a new Scottish state is a must.

When the expected constitutional machinations are underway at Westminster, rest assured, this Column will be your guide and guardian.

We will alert you to what Westminster is up to and how it will affect you.

If constitutional change won the election, who lost?

The BBC did. Big time.

Its trust ratings amongst half the voters in Scotland must be approaching sub-zero levels. Its senior political editors have lost any lustre they may have enjoyed in pandering to Boris Johnson.

From dodgy debates to tweets based on lies and premature ejaculation of postal votes, the BBC has revealed itself in its true colours. It is a state broadcaster.

It very much looks like it shows what the state wants, without demur.

Ironically, even all of this egregious kowtowing has not worked.

Both Labour and the Tories now say the BBC has failed.

The specious BBC logic that if both sides are upset then we are fine, has proved to be vacuous.

The election was “won” by the constitution change and lost by the BBC. And nothing will ever be the same again.

This column welcomes questions from readers