I'M talking rubbish. But please stay with me.

Your front page picture of overflowing litter bins in Edinburgh ("Messy capital", The Herald, August 22) was depressing. But don't blame the council workers and cleansing staff who are fighting for a living wage. Blame those people who continue to throw their fast food boxes, bottles and cans into bins which are already full. It doesn't matter whether there's a strike on or not, that just doesn't make sense. Maybe they just have very small brains and to consider taking their rubbish elsewhere or even home is too much.

Of course the council, knowing a strike was looming, could have temporarily installed more bins in an attempt to meet demand. But no. Any brains in the council chambers may have left the city to escape the Festival.

It's too late now but perhaps this slogan could have been added to every litter bin: Bin it when it won't fit, you're a dimwit.

Andy Stenton, Glasgow.


LIZ Truss's statement that our catastrophic times are caused by a lack of "graft" ("Rees-Mogg defends ‘more graft’ comment", The Herald, August 22) is not just the attitude of the Tories, but rather just a crass way of stating a broader prejudice.

The fetishisation of “hard work” across the political spectrum, with all parties reflexively using such thought-terminating clichés as “hard-working people” and “hard-working families” reduces people to commodities. Why should work be hard? Why should we make life harder than it has to be?

Rather than praise hard work, we should use our resources and skills to make work, and life, easier. Hard work should be seen as a problem to be solved.

Greum Maol Stevenson, Glasgow.


I’M puzzled by Isobel Lindsay’s reasons for opposing nuclear power generation (Letters, August 19). For example, she says that “one of those killed in the January 2021 storming of the US Capitol was an employee of a nuclear plant.” So?

Ms Lindsay also claims that “we are not short of low-risk methods for the radical reduction in carbon emissions”, but doesn’t tell us what those are. Wind, solar and hydro are all reliant on our variable, erratic climate; there are no viable technologies that can store electricity in the quantities needed to get us through periods when renewables aren’t producing; and carbon capture and storage may turn out to be a pipe dream, given the quantities involved and the energy needed to run the system.

James Lovelock, who died last month, was a trailblazing environmentalist who developed the Gaia hypothesis, which suggests the entire Earth is a self-regulating system. He was also a staunch supporter of nuclear energy, as the only carbon-free method of generating electricity in the quantities we need. We are in a climate emergency, and the anti-nuclear lobby has simply ensured the unnecessary production of huge amounts of carbon dioxide and that the pockets of the fossil fuel companies remain well lined.

Doug Maughan, Dunblane.


YOU review "Six affordable electric cars" (Herald Magazine, August 20). As a Fiat 500cc is priced at £29,435, some may question the definition of "affordable".

Malcolm Allan, Bishopbriggs.


I UNDERSTAND why prices are rocketing across the board, but does anyone else think that some supermarkets are laying it on a bit thick? A tub of well-known single cream substitute with 45% less fat was 90p two weeks ago in my local store; yesterday I paid £1.45 for it. That’s an increase of about 60%. Can that be justified?

Ian Balloch, Grangemouth.


I AM rather pleased (and flattered) to see that my Herald Picture of the Day of a jackdaw (first printed on August 15) has prompted letters on four separate days (August 16, 17, 20 & 22), and wonder if this is what fame feels like . A big shout-out to Gordon Hardie and Kevin Crowe for educating me on ornithological matters, Rhona Godfrey for her clever and entertaining poem, and Gilbert Mackay for keeping the story going.

Jacki Gordon, Glasgow.


AN abiding memory of Jeremy Paxman chairing University Challenge ("Broadcaster Amol Rajan appointed new host of University Challenge after Paxman leaves", The Herald, August 19, and Letters, August 22) is an episode when the contest involved alumni of universities, including Val McDermid. One of the questions related to comic strips and the answer was "Oor Wullie". Surely Val must have fallen off her chair laughing (though not filmed) as I did, when Paxman pronounced it "Our Woolie".

Mary Duncan, East Kilbride.


I CANNOT believe the pun joke about pasta won the best joke at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe ("Graham laughing as he wins funniest joke award – again". The Herald , August 22). I appreciate we live in woke times, but it’s just a bit too Edinburgh genteel for those of us who live in another city that’s not restricted to being cultural for only one month in the year.

Now, I appreciate Glasgow has a different reputation and it’s true Glaswegians are prepared to have a fight about anything. In fact it’s the only city in the world where a Jehovah’s Witness comes to the door and tells you to **** off.

Cameron Munro, Glasgow.

• NO doubt you will receive many suggestions from readers of their favourite jokes to add to the list you published of those voted as the best of this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, some of which seem to my mind a bit too contrived. One old favourite of mine, which rather than laugh out loud brings a rueful smile, is the comment that “nostalgia ain’t what it used to be".

Alan Fitzpatrick, Dunlop.

• I’M sure that being a comedian is no laughing matter, and good luck to the winner of the funniest joke award at the Edinburgh Fringe, but anent it and “the other best jokes” I suggest contestants could do worse that pinch material from The Diary any day of the week.

Plagiarism rules, Ok, Ok.

Oscar Wilde: “I wish I had said that”. “You will, Oscar, You will”, Whistler.

R Russell Smith, Largs.