Sir, – On Monday night at Westminster Prime Minister Theresa May accepted four amendments to the Trade Bill in the continuing Monty Python-esque Brexit “negotiations”.
Besides that the EU will not accept this latest move, what does this mean for Scotland?
Although 60% voted to Remain, Scotland’s voice was again seen as an irrelevance by a government turning further to the right daily.
So much for the empty rhetoric of the “Lead don’t Leave” plea at the 2014 Independence Referendum.
This vote, however, has severe implications for Scotland.
We know the soft fruit industry is under threat due to a drop in seasonal labour from Europe, and all agriculture and the fishing industry is under threat as never before.
The SNP are fighting against almost insurmountable odds due to Labour taking the Government’s position.
So what of the 13 Scottish Tory MPs at Westminster? They all voted for the amendments, although Ruth Davidson is on record as saying she would use her authority to ask all MPs to “champion the Scottish national interest” at Westminster, including fighting for greater Scottish powers and spending on agriculture and fishing.
Enough is enough. Scotland is being treated abysmally and the time to call another referendum for Scottish independence is surely fast approaching.
We are way beyond the “significant and material change” needed to call a referendum, and as the UK heads towards an increasingly likely “no deal” Brexit result, the time for Scotland to become independent is now.
Surely we couldn’t do any worse than what is unfolding at Westminster.
Time for a second chance
Sir, – Westminster is in absolute chaos, the people nominally in charge of the country are impotent in the face of the Brexit fanatics, and it seems that there is no way that our departure from Europe can be achieved other than by a no deal Brexit, which every business and economics expert warns will be disastrous for the country.
The official opposition are swinging in the wind, waiting for events to unfold in whatever way they will.
Businesses are now taking action to protect their interests, basically moving out of the UK, taking jobs and investment with them.
Europe is united in astonishment and despair at the farce unfolding in the UK, with no solution imminent.
The “leave” campaign was notable more for heat than light, guilty of misinformation, in many cases blatant lies and proven financial irregularities and, even now, is unable to offer any clarity on how Brexit will ultimately unfold.
Surely now the time has come for the “will of the people”, hopefully better informed, to be tested again in a re-run of the referendum?
It’s not a particularly welcome prospect, but in the face of the reality of years of chaos and decline to come, surely it’s the least worst option?
5 Carmichael Gardens, Dundee.
Tribalism at work
Sir, – It was interesting to see how tribalism works within the Westminster charade of democracy.
An SNP motion had already been agreed but when it went to the customary vote in the chamber, the Speaker called for a vote to which the SNP gave a yes the unionists gave a no.
A division was called, and it was pointed out to the mainly Conservative unionists they had already passed the motion by prior agreement so the vote had to taken again.
This time it passed.
Honestly you couldn’t make this up.
It goes to show that Scottish representation will never be treated with respect in a Westminster system that is fast becoming the laughing stock of not only Europe, but the world.
The huge EU-Japan trade deal
Sir, – As the Brexit divisions are laid bare in the House of Commons, with the Conservative Party split apart, there was more than a little irony that the EU and Japan signed a huge trade deal this week that cuts or eliminates tariffs on nearly all goods.
The agreement covers 600 million people and almost a third of the global economy.
It will remove tariffs on European exports such as cheese and wine, and Japanese automakers and electronics firms will face fewer barriers in the European Union.
While the UK prepares to leave the EU, the world’s second largest economy, representing 500 million people, we will also have to re-negotiate around the 80 trade agreements either in place or partly in place which we currently enjoy through being members of the EU.
This includes the agreement with Japan, which if we want to protect thousands of jobs at car companies like Nissan and Honda, the UK will have to replicate. If not, we could clearly see investment flowing to those countries in the single market.
The UK exiting the EU means not only removing ourselves from the largest single market in the world, with the economic benefits this brings, but we will also have to begin the lengthy negotiations to strike bilateral trade agreements with those very same countries the EU already has links with and which we currently benefit from.
77 Leamington Tce,
The Tay Bridge traffic problem
Sir, – People trying to jump off the Tay Road Bridge seems to be an increasing problem.
Recently my wife and I were driving to an appointment in Dundee but the bridge was blocked because somebody tried to jump off it.
We waited for ages, then had to cancel our appointment, and got home via St Michael’s. This is the second time recently the bridge has been closed for this reason.
Can the relevant authorities please inform us what they are doing to help alleviate this unfortunate situation?
It affects hundreds of drivers and passengers.
31 Hamilton Avenue,
Stop the fear and hate
Sir, – I was brought up in the Catholic faith, went to church confessional as a child and made up stuff to please the adult hiding in the wee box because I couldn’t remember doing anything bad.
I had my doubts at a very early age.
During a Religious Knowledge class led by a music teacher, we were told “If God had intended Man to fly, he’d have given us wings.”
Genuinely puzzled, I asked why God then gave us the intelligence to build aeroplanes. I was labelled a troublemaker.
It seems anyone who speaks out against religious dogma is a “troublemaker”, but the problem is that there are not enough of us.
I’m writing this because I’ve just read yet another example of fear and hate vocalised by a Father in the Catholic Church condemning ordinary people for their sexual orientation and had to confront, and then comfort, the mother of an LGBT child because she was worried that PRIDE Scotland weren’t doing enough to distance themselves from paedophilia.
Being Scottish I’m also sick of these hate marches in the name of historic religious grievances that we have to put up with every summer and the hate chanting that goes hand in glove with certain football teams.
So many bad things are done in the name of religion, including killing innocent people, and although I know there is good too, I ask you, who is the truly moral person?
The one who behaves in a decent and compassionate manner, or the one who does it for fear of eternal damnation, but keeps a get-out-of-jail-free card in the form of the confessional?
22 Fitzroy Street,