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READERS’ LETTERS: Greek tragedy on cards as SNP face deficit

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Madam, – Alex Orr implicitly concedes that the GERS figures are fairly accurate, and that an independent Scotland would face a deficit of around 7% of GDP, by failing to answer them in his letter (Fiscal straitjacket ditched in indy Scotland, Courier, August 27).

When he states that major economic levers required to stimulate economic growth are reserved to Westminster, he carefully avoids answering the currency question.

Without its own currency an independent Scotland would still not control those economic levers.

Assuming they did manage to set up a new currency, they could print money, which is inflationary, and borrow money, increasing Scotland’s national debt.

Neither strategy would solve the Scottish Government’s deficit.

Nor would harsh tax rises, which ignore the economic reality embodied in the Laffer Curve.

The truth is that the SNP has no answer to the deficit issue revealed in the GERS figure.

The government of an independent Scotland would be forced into austerity of Greek proportions and that is why they bluff and obfuscate rather than come up with plausible numbers.

Otto Inglis.

6 Inveralmond Grove,



UK’s future as a tax haven

Madam, – Boris Johnson, like his predecessors David Cameron and Theresa May, went cap in hand to Berlin and Paris begging for a bone to throw to the Brexiteers.

Johnson was given nothing. The Eurocrats have been clear and unyielding from day one. If the UK leaves the EU it will be on no-deal terms or on those dictated by Brussels.

Johnson was humiliated. Neither Merkel nor Macron nor the Eurocrats said anything differently.

His humiliation was compounded at the G7 by President Trump appearing to cast doubt on any post-Brexit trade deal. Now Johnson and his clique are suspending Parliament to force through no-deal.

That such an anti-democratic stance has even been considered is a testament to the terminal rot at the heart of the British state.

If a no-deal scenario does occur, a likely scenario would be that the pro-Brexit politicians would turn Britain into a new Monaco. A floating offshore tax haven.

Alan Hinnrichs.

2 Gillespie Terrace,



The world will be starving

Madam, – Professor McVicar’s letter (Population growth is great problem of age, Courier, August 23) highlighted the problem of human numbers.

When I was born the population of the world was less than two billion.

It had taken mankind 100,000 years to reach that point. Now it is eight billion and rising and a major population explosion in Africa is forecast. The pundits of the 20th Century held such a number to be impossible and far beyond the resources of Earth to feed. Science has come to the rescue with the development of GM foods and improved farming methods, but the tipping point is near.

In spite of the theories of man-made climate change, nothing has happened that would not have happened were mankind not to exist.

The climate cycle has produced a warm period approximately every thousand years and we are in one now.

The previous two warm periods were followed by little ice ages when the annual growing period was shortened by two months.

Were this to happen there will be mass starvation. We, as a country dependent on the surpluses of others for our food supplies, would suffer.

Bill McKenzie.

48 Fintry Place,

Broughty Ferry.


Outdoing the Tory Party

Madam, – While it is sad the pro-Union parties are so far behind in the polls it is hard to have any sympathy with them, especially as someone who voted for Scottish independence.

They made choices for which there are consequences.

In 2014 the pro-Union parties made the decision to insult everyone who voted for Scottish independence by suggesting that we were “conned” by the SNP.

The Liberal Democrats want to stop Brexit, unless it means Scottish independence or working with Jeremy Corbyn. Why not call themselves Tory Lite?

The Labour Party cannot decide their position on the EU or the constitution and the Conservative and Unionist Party probably care more about the needs of Northern Ireland than Scotland.

All three cannot help droning on about how apparently divisive another referendum will be and the two non-Tory parties are determined to out Tory the Tories on how unionist they are.

After five years you would think they would have learned that nationalists can vote.

Peter Ovenstone.

6 Orchard Grove,



Alarmism over Amazon fires

Madam, – Events in Brazil have encouraged “green” celebs to share dramatic photos of fires – most of which weren’t the fires in question and many weren’t even of the Amazon.

Europe’s virtue-waver in chief, French president Macron, accused Brazilian president Bolsonaro of destroying the world’s largest rainforest, which he claimed produces 20% of the planet’s oxygen and is the “lungs of the world”.

As with most climate alarmism, this is pseudo-scientific nonsense.

The Amazon produces a lot of oxygen but it uses the same amount of oxygen in respiration.

Plants use respiration to convert nutrients from the soil into energy.

As Western greens rage against Brazil for daring to use its resources as it sees fit and suggest sending in military forces to take charge of the Amazon, we once again see the mindset that drives so much of their thinking.

Dr John Cameron.

10 Howard Place,

St Andrews.


Plastic use not fantastic at gig

Madam, – Re Scott Milne’s article relating to the bad experience at the DunDee 80s. The show itself was excellent but the lack of toilet facilities was a problem.

Also as stated, the screens were used during the day for advertising and were only utilised for the final two acts. But my main concern was the wasted use of plastic.

The plastic entrance bands served no useful purpose that I can see, as you were not permitted to leave the venue at any time. Paper would have been better.

Angie Rodger.

60 Provost Road,



More activity for elderly needed

Madam, – Physical inactivity in later life is one of our country’s greatest health challenges. Physical activity can reduce the risk of dementia by 30% so we urgently need solutions that encourage exercise suited to older people, to improve their mental and physical wellbeing.

Encouragingly, Anchor Hanover’s research shows 76% of older people wish they were more physically active. That’s why new initiatives like 10 Today are so welcome.

10 Today is a new programme to increase physical activity among older people through short 10-minute exercise routines that can be done almost anywhere and at any time, and are broadcast free on the radio and online.

Jane Ashcroft.

Chief Executive,

Anchor Hanover.