Price of ‘fairness’

EDDIE Barnes (your report, 10 December) quotes an STV poll as showing that “posh” voters apparently largely are still thinking No, while the hard-up are thinking Yes for the separation referendum.

It is no surprise that those who, for no fault of their own, are badly off want the extra financial support seemingly offered by the Yes campaigners to the “needy”.

Indeed, it is a disgrace for the UK as a whole that poverty is increasing for so many.

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In trying to minimise the number of those who adopt living off benefits as a lifestyle for themselves and their families, too many hard-working and just plain unfortunate folk are penalised.

Rectifying this is proving hard in the face of unrepentant right-wingers! In referendum terms, it is hard to see how the intention by Holyrood to develop a “fairer” Scottish society can be achieved starting from the existing fiscal deficit, unless the better-off have their assets redistributed.

Nowhere do any Yes publication or public relations person seem to say how this is proposed to be done. A sizeable increase in minimum wage would be a good start, coupled with real support for a huge increase in the affordable rented housing stock. What these would cost is then able to be estimated, and fiscal policies adjusted. Wishful thinking?

But that is what the white paper Scotland’s Future gives us: prospects without financial estimates. Nine months remain to rectify this.

Joe Darby

Dingwall

Ross-shire