Don’t expect a fairer future with Labour

Surprise, surprise, Dr Scott Arthur (Letters 17 August), like his apparent idol Gordon Brown, wishes to have socialist aims pursued by an economically responsible Labour government, ignoring, like Mr Brown, the repeated failures of past Labour governments that won previous elections through naively or duplicitously promoting the same “ideal”.

While Labour activists and politicians have peddled this mirage over decades, the reality has been that the gulf between the poor and the rich across the UK has continued to spiral while often those who argued most strongly against appointments of unelected peers themselves hypocritically accepted memberships of this privileged gravy train.

When pictures of devastation were beamed around the world and questions raised last week as to why such hazardous chemicals were stored close to a residential area in Tianjin, China, none of our “principled” Labour Party politicians in Scotland, including then leadership contenders Kezia Dugdale and Ken Macintosh, publicly questioned why infinitely more destructive nuclear materials are located adjacent to Scotland’s most populous region.

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This “politically pragmatic” posture typifies Labour’s hypocrisy of turning a blind eye to the potentially catastrophic consequences of renewing Trident for the people they represent in order to sustain the desire of the electorate in the southern half of mainland Britain that the UK remain a “global military power” (read “The Empire is not dead”).

Keir Hardie’s vision lives on but cannot be realised by a “Scottish branch” of a 
morally corrupt and economically irresponsible UK Labour Party.

The way forward for those sincere about successfully delivering home rule for Scotland is to support the SNP or to help build a new party that is not only autonomous and financially independent of “London Labour”, 
but promotes the belief that Scotland, like our Scandinavian neighbours and 
many other countries around the world, can proudly take responsibility for its own 

Stan Grodynski


East Lothian

LeslEy Riddoch (Perspective, 17 August) argued every which way as usual in her full page extolling Jeremy Corbyn’s virtues because he is so close to being a closet SNP supporter, but she failed to state that the SNP’s reasons for any actions are to advance independence, which Corbyn does not go for.

Unfortunately, much of what she wrote is likewise plain flawed.

Starting at the end, she likes an opposition as “vigorous and adventurous” as our first minister, but Nicola Sturgeon is the SNP MPs’ 
remote controller from 
Holyrood and is herself not at Westminster, and her record at home is just not awe-inspiring as many have commented in relation, for example, to education, health and the police.

She has said that voting for the SNP would end austerity in 24 hours – even Mr Corbyn in his recent Edinburgh presentation made it clear that the improvements in social justice he wanted could not be achieved unless the UK’s annual deficits were slashed and the accumulated debt paid down.

EU and Nato membership is allowed by Holyrood, nuclear weapons and all, but it seems that Mr Corbyn wants to abandon such international responsibilities.

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Quite a gap, irrespective of wanting to scrap Trident, which many of us want but accept as best being linked to global multilateral disarmament.

He is just not a “viable English alternative” using the “terrier-like tactics” at Westminster of the SNP MPs which again are aimed at destabilising the UK Tory government to get nearer to being able to declare UDI (now, that would be adventurous).

Her whole article is full of these inconsistencies, but at least she did not go on again about the ill-defined “common weal”, whatever it means.

Perhaps she could address serious issues like funding the needed national early-years’ pre-school development programme, and saying how equal opportunity for all could be enhanced by merging the fee-paying school sector with the state system.

Then we want to know whose incomes and assets are going to be redistributed to help the needy, again necessary to move to reduce inequality, noting that the UK gap between UK chief executives’ pay and that for the average worker has widened yet again.

Joe Darby