Sir, – We should all be extremely concerned over the current state of our NHS.
Something seriously has been going askew over the period of tenure of this government. It is reported that an ever increasing use is being made of agency nurses to paper over gaps in service delivery, and at highly inflated rates.
Everyone, but the latter, seem to realise the need for an extension of training courses for nurses and doctors, with the influx of immigration and the demands of an aging population.
So local authorities have had to bite the bullet and expend monies from ever dwindling resources to fill the gaps; in a sense robbing Peter to pay Paul. Given the job stresses and long work hours endured by medical staff it is small wonder that many are seduced by more amenable working conditions and far superior rates of pay to join the private sector.
The eye has been taken off the ball for too long to sate the all encompassing thirst for independence.
The prime needs of Scotland surely far outstrip this.
Thus a focus on day-to-day requirements and changes in direction deserves top priority in the current pecking order that we might stave off a complete collapse of services.
David L Thomson.
24 Laurence Park,
More drugs is not the answer
Sir, – To combat the growing number of drugs-related deaths, the Scottish Drugs Forum wants Valium to be handed out to addicts (Prescribing valium could save lives, Courier, November 18).
Rather than address the drugs problem at source, which is the sheer availability of drugs, the Forum are going to give more drugs to people already addicted to drugs!
You couldn’t make it up. Still, the distribution involved should mean the employment of even more people in the growth industry of forums, committees and career opportunities for those nursing the drug addiction problem along.
51 Airlie Street,
Perth council has its reasons
Sir, – It is not surprising that Perth and Kinross Council do not wish to declare a formal climate emergency (Climate issue is not being ignored, Courier, November 18).
Their own predictions for the extra traffic that will be stimulated by their proposed Cross Tay Link Road show an increase of 17% in traffic coming from Broxden direction towards the Inveralmond Roundabout in the opening year (even higher in later years).
When they promoted the out-of-town development opportunities – at the cost of city centre vitality – the council did not advertise the increased congestion at Broxden.
The planned road will, like the Edinburgh bypass did, encourage more traffic-growth and is therefore incompatible with claiming to care about congestion or climate change.
Perth and Kinross Council also propose that the road won’t even have a foot/bike pavement on the north side.
This isn’t the decision of an administration that truly cares about climate change.
Perhaps “climate-dissonance” explains Cllr Lyle’s lack of desire to “declare a climate emergency”.
No need to be afraid of indy
Sir, – Can I take this opportunity to thank Nick Dekker on his excellent letter (Scotland’s £350m untapped opportunity, Courier, November 18).
In it he lays out some of the reasons why our country should re-elect the SNP on December 12.
A few weeks ago I read a letter mentioning the late John Jappy, who worked in the general accountancy division of the civil service.
After looking him up I found he had produced two videos titled “Hiding the Truth” and “Scotland’s Oil”.
There is also a third entitled “Politicians Quotes” with Gavin McCrone which is interesting.
What these videos do is give a glimpse into why successive Westminster governments have been desperate to keep under wraps where the income from oil went and, even now if we were to go it alone, we need not have any doubts it is an affordable option and we should not be in any way afraid of independence.
Better uses for carrier cash
Sir, – Referring to HMS Prince of Wales (Milestone as Rosyth built Royal Navy carrier sails to home port, Courier, November 18) in an age of increasingly sophisticated drones, large ships are surely sitting ducks as one drone in a thousand will get through.
Instead of blowing thousands of millions of pounds on two carriers for foreign adventures, including the coming war on Russia-backed Iran, the government should have been building more coastal patrol vessels to secure our borders and catch illegal immigrants, as well as more fisheries protection ships for our 200-mile exclusive zone after a clean Brexit.
And with plenty of cash left over, we could have helped revive the now critically ill NHS.
29 Hudson Road,
Schools are not inclusive
Sir, – We were sad, if not surprised, to read startling statistics from a Glasgow University professor’s research about the sectarian attitudes of boys, even the non-religiously practising ones, at Scotland’s Catholic schools.
It seems fewer than a third thought Protestants did a lot of good in the world; more than a third felt they had no Protestant friends; and horrifyingly, almost a half would not be happy if a close relative married someone from another denomination.
Continuing claims by Catholic leaders that these sequestered schools teach inclusiveness are absurd.
Edinburgh Secular Society.
Sir, – This week marks the 10th anniversary of Climategate, when thousands of emails were hacked from University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit.
These emails show skulduggery and insatiable appetites for multi-million-pound research grants, but also environmental statements which are the opposite to that said in public.
For example climate alarmists tell us that the number of storms is increasing.
However an email dated September 1999 says “the trends in intense Atlantic hurricanes are indeed downward”.
Alarmists also tell us that the sun is not driving climatic changes.
However an email dated July 2001 says “there is a growing number of striking coincidences between climate changes and the occurrence of abrupt changes in solar activity such as grand minima.”
They also tell us that the earth is at its hottest in 120,000 years.
However an email dated October 2000 says “summer temperatures for both these series which extend back to 1756 and about 1740 show warmer conditions than today during many summers from 1750 to 1850”.
There are hundreds more.
Shouldn’t the huge sums spent combating this dubious man-made warming theory be spent instead on health and education?