WON’T someone think of the D-list celebrities? All those vaguely recognisable souls whose acting, singing or sporting careers have dried up must have been sitting by the phone these past few months, praying for a call-up to the Australian jungle.

Then along comes Kezia Dugdale to pinch a coveted place in the camp alongside the likes of boxer Amir Khan, footballer’s wife Rebekah Vardy and Hollyoaks actor Jamie Lomas. Whatever next? Will she be jetting straight from the jungle on to the set of Alex Salmond’s new chat show? Or is this whole thing just a wind-up created by Russian bots to distract from the news that Russian bots are now in charge, filling the eyes and ears of gullible adults with fake news while sneaking Peppa Pig snuff movies on to YouTube to troll innocent children?

Perhaps by the time you read this she’ll already be up to her ears in witchetty grubs, but the jungle drums suggest she’ll be a late arrival in the camp. If she’s not yet been spotted at the airport, she might still be sitting at home filling out her SNP membership application.

Judging by some of the comments she’s made since quitting as Scottish Labour leader and going rogue, being trapped in a confined space with a load of creepy crawlies might not be very different from hanging out at Holyrood. And since she apparently did little to address slimy goings-on when she was in her party's top job, maybe she deserves to be buried alive in a coffin full of spiders – at least until such a time as she’s earned Boris Johnson’s old man his dinner.

Naturally, many were quick to suggest Dugdale’s apparent choice to jet half way around the world was a bit of an over-reaction to the appointment of Corbynite Richard Leonard as her successor. The news certainly overshadowed his victory over her New Labour chum Anas Sarwar, and he now has an almighty mess to clear up during his first week in the job. However, against considerable odds he managed to yank the media spotlight back on to himself at the weekend by snapping a few selfies with BiFab workers and erroneously suggesting he had something to do with the rescue negotiated on their behalf by the Scottish Government. Who cares that he now looks like a complete clown? Column inches are column inches, even if they just state “Richard Leonard is a clown” over and over again.

Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn has weighed in to suggest Dugdale shouldn’t be suspended from the party just because she’s bunking off for three weeks to make an arse of herself. It’s worth noting that Nadine Dorries made the same move back in 2012 – but given that the Tory MP has made repeated attempts to restrict abortion access, fought against an imaginary campaign to ban high heels in the workplace and attacked disabled people for tweeting too much, “Nadine Dorries did it” really isn’t the most watertight defence for anything.

Perhaps the bearded one’s intervention is a double bluff, and part of a cunning plan to prove Leonard is his own man rather than a mere branch-office manager following the boss’s orders. Taking power and instantly suspending his predecessor wouldn’t be a good look, but neither was Dugdale amending her register of interests so that she’s no longer committed to donating all of her outside earnings to charity. A source told the Sunday Herald “tax liability arrangements” were the reason for this move. That sound you can hear is old-Labour socialists repeatedly banging their heads off a wall.

So is money the key motivator for Dudgale heading down under, or attention? It’s becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish between our elected representatives and the fame-hungry empty vessels who populate “simulated reality” shows on TV.

On The Only Way is Holyrood they show up once a week or so to deliver some semi-scripted dialogue and argue with each other for the cameras, and in between times they’re off posing for pictures and lining up side gigs. What message does it send about the importance of our parliament that key players seem willing to shout “get me out of here!” at the slightest sniff of an opportunity to bag a seat at the Loose Women table, or to bake a Great British cake and audition for the role of Prime Minister? Shouldn’t they be getting on with their day jobs rather than nakedly chasing UK-wide fame?

It’s enough to make you nostalgic for the innocent days of 2006, when a purring George Galloway pretended to sup milk from hands of Rula Lenska, donned an off-the-shoulder lycra bodysuit and was zapped with electric shocks by Big Brother. If Dugdale is now so scunnered with Scottish politics that she’ll trade her dignity for a few gold stars, surely it’s a sign that something has gone very badly wrong behind the scenes.