Sir, I was very disappointed to hear about the behaviour of Labour’s candidate for Angus for the general election next year, Kathy Wiles (comparing the children of Yes Scotland campaigners to Hitler Youth and calling for Jeremy Clarkson to be shot). It is welcome that she has resigned as candidate and apologised for her comments.
Angus Labour and the Scottish Labour Party need to be open about how Kathy Wiles was selected as their Westminster candidate, what vetting process was in place and whether they had made even some basic checks on her opinions and behaviour. It seems they have had little regard or respect for Angus voters by selecting someone with such nasty views.
We have seen similar unacceptable behaviour by the notorious CyberNats, such as the horrendous treatment of J K Rowling since her decision to back the Better Together Campaign, and the heckling of Willie Rennie MSP at a debate in Dunfermline.
The tone of the independence debate has plunged in recent weeks. Better Together and Yes Scotland should both strongly condemn any personal attacks on supporters of the other side of the debate.
It is time we stopped the nastiness towards our neighbours and accept that we are all trying to find what is best for Scotland. We may have a big difference of opinion on whether that is to stand united or “split up the family”, but we are all striving for what we feel is the best outcome.
Angus voters deserve a better level of discussion from both sides of the independence debate and they deserve Westminster candidates who will respect all sides of the political argument.
Sanjay Samani. Viewpark, Meethill Road, Alyth.
Tax contribution underestimated
Sir, I have read many articles both in the press and in Better Together campaign material with regard to Scotland’s tax “contribution” to the UK.
Can I highlight that the tax contribution currently provided by Scotland to the UK is vastly underestimated?
As the tax sales point is registered at the business head office address, goods and services supplied from Scotland (predominantly from the whisky and energy sectors) are classed as English for the purposes of tax generation.
It is estimated that the additional tax revenue generated but not accounted for in Scotland is in excess of £1billion per annum.
This figure would be more than sufficient to pay for the various “Scottish” governmental departments needed in an independent Scotland.
Iain Stewart. Powmill.
Sir, As I am unemployed at the moment and desperately seeking work unsuccessfully I decided to try my hand at volunteering.
I have found it increasingly frustrating that charities wish to have two references and expect volunteers to fill out lengthy questionnaires and forms. My referees are being bombarded with requests for paid employment and it takes them time to fill them out without bureaucratic charities approaching them for paperwork.
Everyone agrees that voluntary work is an excellent way to fill in your time however potential volunteers are being put off by needless red tape. It can be exceptionally difficult for someone to provide two references if that person has not worked for several years.
One charity even told me that they were doing a “recruitment selection” day and they would get back to me if I was succesful for my second interview.
Charities seem to forget that they are not businesses and they receive generous rebates so they should act accordingly.
Gordon Kennedy. 117 Simpson Square, Perth.
Concerns about wind farm
Sir, Following the public meeting in Birnam on June 30, I write to express concern and opposition to the proposal to construct a 17-turbine wind farm at Dulater off the Butterstone/Blairgowrie road (A923).
If planning consent is granted by the Scottish Government this project will be extremely intrusive visually over a large area especially from Dunkeld and the Loch of the Lowes, Murthly and Coupar Angus in an area of special beauty and wildlife conservation.
The work and transport access involved in the building and long-term servicing of the wind farm would be extremely disruptive to residents, farmers and foresters all along A923 and the road from Rotmell to Dunkeld, and this at a time which would overlap with the proposed dualling project on the A9.
Worst of all it was clear at the meeting that if this project is allowed, others (up to eight in the pipeline!) are likely to follow.
Almost all the questions and comments made at the well-attended meeting were critical of the proposal and the Ecotricity personnel who fielded the questions were distinctly evasive when probed about the implications and who will benefit financially.
I urge as many readers as possible to find out what they can from the web and to express their concerns in writing to the Scottish Government during the planning application period that is over the next couple of months.
Rev William Hogg. Craigwood, Brae Street, Dunkeld.