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I hardly slept a wink on Thursday night. I suffer from Shadenfreude. It’s caused by “taking pleasure in the misfortunes of others” and the only cure is irony tablets.

It came on as I watched Nicola Sturgeon get taken apart by the panel on BBC Question Time.

Even the audience were in on it and, unbelievably, applauded when a working-class Scottish woman living in England said that if Nicola got rid of Trident she would gladly have the missiles in her back garden as it made her feel safe from Vladimir Putin.

Then Michael Heseltine ridiculed her for saying she wanted £180bn more public spending so we could be like Greece, and Duncan Bannatyne agreed that young unemployed people should get work experience in exchange for benefits.

What right do these people have to say kind of thing this to Nicola?

The rest was too shocking for your readers. Thankfully, nobody mentioned the collapse in the oil price, the pound, the disastrous wind farm policy or the Scottish housing, NHS and education crises.

I prayed that our local politicians don’t take their cue from this debacle and realise that there is a huge swathe of voters who lap this kind of drivel up. It would be disastrous for the SNP’s plans to get 50 seats in the general election and break up the UK. I wept.

Allan Sutherland

Willow Row

Stonehaven

It took Nicola Sturgeon just seconds to get into her anti-
Trident harangue as an opener to Thursday night’s BBC Question Time.

At least Ms Sturgeon did admit that the £100 billion projected cost for Trident is over a period of 35 years but then marred this, until corrected by Michael Heseltine, by claiming a figure of £4bn per year.

Ms Sturgeon appears to be of the faction that prefers a substantial increase in “conventional” defence spending to replace Trident so that its £3 billion share could be spent on more socially acceptable projects.

Now I thought our total defence budget was about £42bn. I am at a loss to work out how a substantial increase on £39bn could be considered materially less than the £3bn claimed potential saving on Trident.

At least the other panel members and the audience seemed to be largely of the opinion that at £50 per head per annum Trident is a pretty good insurance policy in these troubled times.

(Dr) A McCormick

Kirkland Road

Terregles, Dumfries

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