Union blues

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IT WOULD appear that this week’s “save the Union” scaremongering story is about mobile phones and Royal Mail and how an independent Scotland would lose out.

The problem with all these attempts to influence the debate is that they can be easily countered. The threat that a call between Duns and Berwick would suddenly become an international call ignores the fact that the European Union has voted to remove international rates and, more importantly, communication companies are businesses who want to attract customers. It would take only one company to offer cheap rates for the others to follow suit.

As for the Royal Mail, if it cannot deliver in remote areas, then there are many others who can. Every weekday up to seven parcel companies ignore the sign at Inverness saying “this is the end of the known world” and drive the 70 miles to the remote outpost of Wester Ross. While the internet has reduced the letter traffic (but not unfortunately junk mail), it has increased the parcel traffic.

It is amazing that countries such as the Republic of Ireland, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Austria and Switzerland manage to exist with such small populations – perhaps fortunately they have never listened to the Westminster government.

I am looking forward to a report from the Department for the Environment stating that, after independence, the sun is no longer going to shine or the wind blow in Scotland, so foiling the renewable energy plans.

Bruce D Skivington

Pairc a Ghliob, Strath

Gairloch, Wester Ross

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