Readers' Letters: Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid will regret their treachery

Congratulations to Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid – enjoy your few months as Prime Minister and Chancellor incumbent as you get your hearts’ desire.

May it bring you comfort in the long decade in the electoral wilderness to come, having de facto handed the keys to No.10 to Sir Keir Starmer's Labour Party, with all the woke lunacy run rampant it will entail.

If you think the British electorate will accept a return to the austerity politics your Diet Thatcherite backers Jeremy Hunt and failed prime minister Theresa May wish, you're in for a rude shock at the ballot box.

Mark Boyle, Johnstone, Renfrewshire

Former health secretary Sajid Javid delivers a personal statement to the House of Commons yesterday following his resignation from the cabinetFormer health secretary Sajid Javid delivers a personal statement to the House of Commons yesterday following his resignation from the cabinet
Former health secretary Sajid Javid delivers a personal statement to the House of Commons yesterday following his resignation from the cabinet
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Interesting times

We are living in increasingly “interesting” times as the Chinese curse says. The basic reason is that we Brits in general, and we Scots in particular, are in the unfortunate situation of being “heroes led by asses”.

That this happens in a notional democracy is simply because we the people do not choose our rulers, as is the intention. Instead, we support a political party but have to cope with whatever wannabe candidate that party places on our ballot papers; holding our noses with one hand whilst we place our Xs with the other – if we bother to vote at all. As long as that persists proper democracy is stymied – with the results we suffer daily.

The solution that appeals to me is to replace parties and ballots with something very akin to the way juries are selected – by chance, but with safeguards.

That way we can all benefit from the services of those who otherwise wouldn't care to take part in today's political shambles. Let's open up democracy to the people – to the many, not the few!

Tim Flinn, Garvald, East Lothian

On the ropes

Controversy over what the PM knew over allegations surrounding former deputy chief whip Chris Pincher has forced him to apologise yet again for another indiscretion whereby the PM played fast and lose with the British people.

It tends to be the weak that lie as they try to hide their shortcomings and those ardent Johnson supporters led by Jacob Rees-Mogg will no doubt be concocting another odious defence to cover his inadequacies.

Sajid Javid and Rishi Sunak have looked distinctly uncomfortable at PMQs in recent weeks and it is no surprise they have quit. Having had enough of their leader’s lies they are no longer willing to cover up for his misdemeanours.

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Their move could be a catalyst to another cabinet walk-out similar to the night of the long knives Mrs Thatcher endured in 1990 as one by one her ministers quit.

They both have leadership ambitions of their own and if their cabinet colleagues don’t follow they will expect their closest allies to quit office themselves and fracture the Government down the middle.

In either circumstance the way forward will be opening the way to allow the rules to be altered for another no confidence vote, one that Johnson will surely lose.

A Starmer-led Labour Party will find it much harder to win against a Sunak- or Javid-led Conservative Party. It will also go some way to resetting the party from Johnson -induced failings over Covid mismanagement, Brexit implementation, sleaze and the cost of living. It all adds up to a fascinating run-in to the next election.

Neil Anderson, Edinburgh

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Nuclear option

The political shenanigans surrounding the survival of Boris Johnson are akin to the storyline in a horror movie with each new revelation more gruesome than the last.

One wonders how long this state of affairs can continue with increasing uncertainty creating more instability within government at a time when the economy and other crucial issues require resolute action.

The Prime Minister is obviously intent on clinging to power come what may, a trait seemingly shared by other politicians more closer to home. He is bolstered by the views of many voters who think that leaders with knighthoods don't necessarily bring a guarantee of credibility and competence.

With his back against the wall, it may well be that Boris Johnson will eventually go for the nuclear option and call an early general election plunging the country into further chaos.

Bob MacDougall, Kippen, Stirling

Writing on the wall

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The Bible describes an ancient ruler with an array of wives and concubines, who is startled when a supernatural hand terrifyingly appears at a banquet and writes four words – mene, mene, tekel, parsin – on a wall. A prophet interprets the words and reveals how the leader has been "weighed on the scales and found wanting” so that his reign is doomed.

Good riddance to Boris Johnson. Financial or sexual sleaze are part of worldly life but have they been elevated to an art form by the current Tory Party.

JT Hardy, Belfast, Northern Ireland

First rule

Way back in the 1960s when I studied politics I remember reading that the First Commandment for politicians was "don't get caught”.

Now in the 21st century nothing has apparently changed. Instead of “lies” we have sophistry and numerous smooth-talking spokespersons. Their aim is to confound and confuse, not elucidate.

Their First Commandment is: “Protect the PM at all or any cost.”

Robert M. Dunn, Edinburgh

Sturgeon’s view

Nicola Sturgeon has reiterated that she longs for Boris Johnson to be ousted but, as this possibility edges closer, is this what she really wants? Ending a 300-plus years union is of course about much more than the prime minister du jour yet Sturgeon often focuses on Johnson's style and lack of popularity in Scotland – more than suggesting his personality is a compelling reason for voters to back her UK break-up dreams.

Following repeated scandals surrounding Johnson, it's likely Tories will replace him with a less polarising leader unlikely to be as unpopular here as Johnson.

If he goes, Sturgeon will inevitably demand an early general election. In this though, she would rightly be accused of double standards. Remember that when Alex Salmond resigned after his defeat in the 2014 referendum, Sturgeon simply took over as First Minister with no Holyrood election until 2016. Whatever Sturgeon may claim, I suspect she won't regard a Johnson departure as helpful to her secessionist cause.

Martin Redfern, Melrose, Scottish Borders

Pointless exercise

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The Scotsman's award-winning reporter, Conor Matchett, doggedly fought a 13-month transparency battle with the SNP over the release of legal advice on an independence referendum. The SNP doggedly refused to comply to his Freedom of Information request, claiming it was “not in the public interest”.

Unsurprisingly the Scottish Information Commissioner ruled that the information requested is indeed in the public interest and ordered its release by 10 June. Still the SNP fudged. Now (Scotsman, July 6) Scotland's Lord Advocate tells us: "The people of Scotland… ought to have clarity on the scope of the relevant reservations on this issue of fundamental constitutional importance.” Could anyone but the SNP ever have argued otherwise?

She explains that the Lord Advocate would need to have “confidence” in the competence of the Scottish Parliament to legislate on the issue and “does not have the necessary degree of confidence”.

The only astonishing aspect of this whole sorry saga is the lengths to which the SNP will go in order to prevent the Scottish people from hearing the truth when it is damaging to their crusade. They even prevented the Lord Advocate of Scotland from appearing before the Scottish Parliament because they feared she would let the cat out of the bag!

Well now the cat is out there and it makes clear what anyone but the most blinkered nationalist diehard could see from the outset. The legal advice is clear that Nicola Sturgeon's latest ploy is nothing other than a political stunt doomed to fail. It is a desperate attempt to divert the Scottish people's attention away from the catastrophic failures of her governance evident in our schools, our hospitals and surgeries, our streets or wherever we care to look. And even this ruse has resulted in failure. The attention of the Scottish people is now focused on a costly pointless exercise as well as the culture of secrecy at the heart of this SNP government.

Colin Hamilton, Edinburgh

Silly season

On achieving four score years this month I received a letter from the Pension Service informing me that the milestone is marked by an increase in my State Pension of 25p per week. A rough calculation suggests it has probably cost the service between three and four weeks of my increase to pass on the information by snail mail.

At a time of double-digit inflation this generous increase amounts to about 0.13 per cent. What a financial farce. The silly season has come early for me this year!

Dr SR Wild, Edinburgh

Bus blow

I read with dismay that the Dumfries-Biggar-Edinburgh bus service is to end on 14 August.

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Thereafter it would appear that residents of South Lanarkshire seeking to access Edinburgh Waverley or Edinburgh Airport by public transport will face a tortuous journey via Glasgow involving use of the increasingly permanent temporary train services.

Clearly the prospect of a working fully integrated public transport system remains a pipe dream. Time to get the high emission turbo diesel out of the garage.

David Edgar, Biggar, South Lanarkshire

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