DOUGLAS Alexander has reached a new low in using the anniversary of John Smith’s death to imply that a Yes vote would be against his legacy (“Tributes to Smith 20 years after his death”, News, 11 May). In support for his case he states that for John Smith a devolved parliament “was not an end in itself but a means to end poverty, injustice and inequality”.
Doesn’t Douglas Alexander understand the absurdity of his argument?
Where has he been if he doesn’t know that Scotland is part of a UK which is the fourth most unequal society in the world with burgeoning zero-hour contracts, poverty and food banks – all set to increase under future austerity policies indicated by both main UK parties following the next UK elections?
Had John Smith lived long enough to become prime minister he may well have ensured the devolution settlement was such that the Scottish Government would have sufficient powers and access to resources to “end poverty, injustice and inequality” in Scotland.
Given how far away from these hopes the current situation is, who can say that John Smith may not have been more likely to agree with Canon Kenyon Wright (chairman of the Constitutional Convention, which drew up the blueprint for the Scottish Parliament), who has now concluded that only independence can achieve the hoped-for ends.
Jim Stamper, Rutherglen