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Labour social media 'guru' resigns over SNP Downfall parody

MP Tom Harris has quit as Labour's social media chief in Scotland after making a Downfall parody of SNP leader Alex Salmond.

Labour MP Tom Harris has resigned as the party's social media chief in Scotland after making a Downfall parody of Scottish National Party leader Alex Salmond, the BBC reports.

The resignation was not because his online credibility was fatally damaged by coming three years late to a meme, but rather because any mention of Hitler is kryptonite in politics. Think of it as an extreme version of Godwin's Law.

Harris published the video in the middle of a brewing row about a referendum on Scottish independence, which is opposed by the three largest political parties in the UK, including Labour.

"The video I posted has been a well worn joke used to parody a range of public figures," Harris sighed. "However, context is everything and in the context of... [SNP MSP] Joan McAlpine's much more serious statements about all political opponents of the SNP being anti-Scottish, my actions have been an unhelpful distraction for which I apologise."

Re-writing the subtitles on Downfall became a popular Internet joke, or meme, in late 2008, when it was funny roughly three times. The scene, in which Hitler explodes with rage, is given new subtitles to suggest he's angry at everyday news, such as football managers being sacked, the latest gossip from Apple or Scottish plans to dismantle the United Kingdom.

It enjoyed a tedious resurgence in 2010 when the company behind the movie, Constantin Films, started issuing takedown notices to YouTube.

Bruno Ganz's vicious, spitting portrayal of Hitler is widely regarded as one of the greatest ever committed to celluloid -- certainly up there with Michael Sheard in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

The philosophy that dictators should be mocked at every opportunity, shared by Charlie Chaplin and Sacha Baron Cohen, is severely frowned upon in UK politics, where the merest whiff of well-used parody, gentle humour or musty wit results in the end of one's career.

"It is silly, negative nonsense like this that helps explain why Labour are in the doldrums in Scotland," an SNP spokesperson parped to the BBC.