SNP control

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It’s disappointing that Colin Hamilton (Letters, 12 March) can only see the prospect of erosion of democracy when it relates to the SNP. He gives the game away when he describes the proposal to incorporate the British Transport Police into Police Scotland.

If Mr Hamilton took the trouble to read before writing, he would discover that this is not another SNP plot, but a proposal put forward by the Smith Commission of which all the participating parties were aware.

Cue Hugh Henry MSP to stand up in the Scottish Parliament to express faux outrage. Mr Hamilton would also do well to learn to show some ordinary courtesy and respect and desist from describing the entire membership of the SNP as a mob who do not have the wit or intelligence to divine individually what they will or will not tolerate in terms of policy or strategy.

He seems to forget that this is Scotland we live in.

My earlier letter did refer to people expressing eccentric views. When I discussed these views with people close to me and other SNP activists they were blunt. It was pointed out that some of the views and descriptions put forward were so ludicrously extreme that they were laughable.

The advice I received was to ignore them and laugh at them lest I become as daft and obsessed as the people who wrote them. And with this sound advice in mind, I hope John Cameron and David Allan will forgive me if I do not respond to their points.

Douglas Turner

Derby Street

Edinburgh

The latest SNP move away from democracy towards increasing totalitarianism is its proposed edict to SNP MSPs that they “must accept that no member shall, within or outwith Parliament, publicly criticise a group decision, policy or another member of the group”.

Gets more like Animal Farm every day.

Donald Lewis

Gifford

East Lothian

It is disappointing, but not entirely surprising, that none of the recent comments among those castigating its adherence to party and fiscal discipline include recognition of the significant obstacles confronted by the SNP.

Of course we should all be wary of “creeping state control” of our lives by all tiers of government, but to fail to recognise the genuine need for discipline in a political party that is considerably disadvantaged due to inherent bias, if not hostility, within Britain’s mainstream media as well as due to the financial constraints of a near bankrupt UK economy, is either naïve or deliberately subjective.

The people of Scotland would not have had the opportunity to express their views on independence in a referendum without the discipline of a determined and well-organised SNP.

If rather than looking to find fault with the SNP, Brian Wilson (Perspective, 7 March), Dr Roger Cartwright (Letters, 9 March), Joe Darby, Dr Gordon Cochrane (10 March), Colin Hamilton and Dr John Cameron (12 March) were to question the legitimacy of the House of Lords as a “second chamber”, or the further delay in publishing the Chilcot Inquiry report into the 2003 invasion of Iraq, or the failures in investigating alleged child abuse that apparently reached the highest levels of the British Government, perhaps Scotland’s journey towards independence might be halted.

Instead of attempting to defend a corrupt “Westminster establishment”, failing UK democracy and broken British society these democratically concerned gentlemen should be pondering whether it is laudable for the SNP, unlike the Liberal Democrats, to be denied access to the UK civil service to discuss their election policies while those same policies are partially analysed and publicly disseminated by a UK Treasury reporting to Danny Alexander.

Stan Grodynski

Longniddry

East Lothian

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