IT is quite something when a former Unionist FM, Henry McLeish, is the one to suggest that the Scottish Government bypass Westminster and ask for a Scotland-only extension to EU talks, something Nicola should have done without being prompted to (‘Scotland needs to bypass UK on Brexit’, June 4).
Even if the request is turned down by the EU, which is more than possible for a variety of reasons, it would send a very powerful statement of intent by Scotland that it did not want to leave the EU in the first place and does not agree with the UK/England dragging us out of the EU against our will, with the huge damage to our economy which will follow that of the pandemic.
READ MORE: Henry McLeish: ‘Scotland needs to bypass UK on Brexit’
For that reason, I am appealing to all independence supporters to sign my petition on change.org (it can be found here) asking Nicola to ask the EU for a Scotland-only extension to the trade talks, given the UK Tory government is going to crash out at the end of the month and will not seek an extension, again for various reasons to do with tax evasion by the rich and powerful.
I would also suggest that the SNP also ensure that the 2021 Holyrood election becomes our de facto independence vote given the English government’s refusal to grant us their Section 30 order under any circumstances.
I must say, whilst I along with many others admire Nicola’s conduct in government, I am very concerned that she has painted herself into a corner with this “gold standard” nonsense over a Section 30 order put in place by Westminster to frustrate our legitimate right to self-determination.
READ MORE: Henry McLeish is right when it comes to Dominic Cummings
REALLY excellent letter from L McGregor of Falkirk (June 5) pointing out that the SNP have missed an open goal by allowing their MPs to return to Westminster, failing once again to take any meaningful steps towards independence and failing to comply with, if not the law, then at the very least their own guidance.
For the past five years the SNP leadership have been ploughing their slow and steady furrow, hoping to win over doubters by competent governance (in comparison to Westminster), and that when all the heavenly stars align, independence will become inevitable. Meanwhile in the real world history tells us that this is not only fallacious but politically naive and indeed dangerous, with the UK Government hell-bent on pursuing Brexit at any cost.
Rather than winning the prize of independence, we will be left with the wooden spoon and an empty pot. To misquote the great Che Guevara: “Independence is not a fruit that falls when it is ripe. It needs to be made to fall.”
READ MORE: SNP MPs missed an open goal with their return to Westminster
I AGREE entirely with L McGregor’s letter. These MPs have effectively given in to an unreasonable employer and are breaching the Scottish Government’s requirement to work from home if at all possible.
Their working from home has been proved to be possible over preceding weeks. Giving in to an unreasonable employer gives exactly the wrong message to other employers that it is acceptable to force workers to break the rules.
Had Scotland’s MPs refused to be forced to go back, particularly given the resultant ludicrous scenes at Westminster, many – especially those under undue pressure to return to work – would have supported them. Seeing them having the self-respect to take a stand against an unreasonable and reckless UK Government would have gained them some respect from the public and underlined how little respect the UK Government had for the Scottish Government and Scottish MPs. Many would have realised that we need to get out of that UK Parliament permanently.
L MCGREGOR feels SNP MPs threw away a trump card in attending Westminster for the debate on “future procedures of the House during the pandemic”. I am sure the SNP MPs would have found themselves in the position of damned if you do, damned if you don’t!
The resultant debate in the House was rather heated and the SNP made a very worthwhile contribution, but as L McGregor alluded to, we were totally ignored as usual. But it is the behaviour of the Conservative opposition benches that should have made the headlines, laughing and jeering while SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford MP was on his feet. Quite honestly appalling behaviour and behaviour that exposes the Conservative benches for what they are: an insult to free speech and democracy.
But on the issue being debated – whether to allow MPs to continue to take part in proceedings remotely through the temporary “hybrid” system of proceedings, when all divisions are taken remotely – this system is not all what it seems, because all MPs cannot take part. It only allows for 50 MPs to attend the House, with another 120 able to contribute through Zoom from afar. It does not satisfy true democracy and representation.
It may be worth noting that 10 Conservatives rebelled against the government. I do think the SNP had to make representation on such a crucial issue. After all, Scotland’s voice must be heard.
Catriona C ClarkFalkirk
WHERE is Spitting Image when we need it? There has never been a time when the main party political players were so ready to be satirised. Johnson, Cummings, Rees-Mogg and Trump were made for it. Their political skulduggery and blatant incompetence would throw up many chances for an endless number of TV shows. Today’s cast are tailor-made for the show, where even the faceless ones lend themselves to be caricatured for that reason alone. Please, please bring this show back. Today we all need a laugh!