THE latest line of Tory propaganda in the saga of their chaotic party manoeuvres and contrived distractions from catastrophic governance is that Nicola Sturgeon became First Minister without being elected to that position by the public, so there is no question over the democratic legitimacy of Tory Party members effectively selecting as many different Prime Ministers as they desire even if those PMs totally abandon policies contained in the manifesto on which they were elected to parliament.

Of course, following the lead of the chairman of the so-called Scottish Conservatives, Craig Hoy, others have been prepared to defend the seemingly indefensible by falsely claiming that “this is what all political parties do” while others have passed verbal or written comments (as per Paul Teenan's letter, October 25) in apparently desperate attempts to draw false equivalence. Who in Scotland did not know that Nicola Sturgeon was Alex Salmond’s deputy in the SNP (for more than 10 years and through successive election campaigns) and who did not think it was logical for the person who was also Deputy First Minister (for more than seven years) to take over following Mr Salmond’s sudden resignation? Perhaps those who would argue otherwise can tell us the names of the Tory Party deputies of David Cameron, Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, and now, Rishi Sunak?

The fact that there is no public outcry, never mind a General Election, as the Tory Party still arrogantly continues to flout its "election mandate" in such a cavalier manner without any reform of their internal leadership processes, or reform of the process of changing Prime Minister, simply confirms the bleak reality that while the party may not yet be completely over for the Tories, without major constitutional change UK democracy is as dead as the Monty Python stuffed parrot.
Stan Grodynski, Longniddry

Will Sturgeon learn humility?

THE new Conservative Party leader and incoming Prime Minister in his address to the nation on October 24 stated that he would serve the country with "integrity and humility". I wish him well with that aspiration ("What next for Scotland and the Union as Sunak takes over as PM", The Herald, October 25). Nicola Sturgeon, never likely to show much of the second quality referred to by Rishi Sunak, is predictably quick to offer him advice, which he should take because it is based upon what she perceives to be her exceptional knowledge, experience and wisdom.

The relationship would have a better chance of being successful if the Scottish end of it were a bit less convinced of its infallibility when telling others how to do it. Is this not the person who has been First Minister when Scotland has an unacceptable number of drug deaths; failed to reduce the attainment gap in education; a health service that is struggling to cope; has experienced the waste of taxpayers’ funds on Calmac ferries and Prestwick Airport, and much more?

Perhaps if the First Minister approached discussions with the new Prime Minister with a preparedness to acknowledge that life has been somewhat less than utopian in Scotland under her watch there would be a better chance of such discussions being productive and beneficial.
Ian W Thomson, Lenzie

• IN Rishi Sunak's first statement since becoming the incoming Prime Minister ("New PM’S ‘profound’ economic warning", The Herald October 25), he pledged to bring the "party and country together". The order of precedence of these two priorities betray which is the more important to him, as it was to his predecessors (although "self" was obviously even more important to them than either "party" or "country".
Brian Johnston, Torrance

It's game on once more

SIR Keir Starmer and Nicola Sturgeon's calls for a General Election will fall on deaf ears. Rishi Sunak must be given at least a chance. Sir Keir is not as well equipped to deal with the immediate economic storm and Ms Sturgeon is not even able to make a vaguely credible economic case for independence.

Mr Sunak is the right man at the right time. If anyone can turn around the fortunes of the Conservative Party it is he. The next General Election may well not be the "jog in the park" that Labour had anticipated and the SNP is looking very jaded indeed and well past its best.

A week is, once again, a long time in politics. It is game on.
Dr Gerald Edwards, Glasgow

Why do we let this happen?

ALTHOUGH it appears to be generally accepted that the surge in food inflation and the increasing cost of heating and cooking will have the greatest impact on the poorest in society, it also seems to be tacitly taken for granted that many will suffer hardship and there will be an increase in the number of unnecessary deaths over the coming winter. I find that situation appalling.

While Armageddon looms for many at the bottom of the social scale the media and the cognoscenti fret over the Westminster pantomime where a multi-millionaire who came second best to the worst Prime Minister in recent times (and that is saying a lot) in a previous run-off now is considered to be the new messiah by his fellow MPs who rejected him last time round.

If things weren’t so bad it would be laughable. What kind of democracy do we have when government accepts that citizens will suffer and die while absolutely nobody in the executive or those who keep them in power is at any risk?

The bottom line is that the distribution of wealth in the UK is so skewed that that the bottom 50% of society have a meagre 10% of the national wealth. They are the group who will suffer and die unnecessarily over the coming months and Westminster and the Establishment that keeps it in power will sit back and let it happen.
David J Crawford, Glasgow

• DAVID Bol writes that no Prime Minister has served a second spell in Downing Street since Winston Churchill ("Johnson comeback bid shows just how hungry for power ex-PM was", The Herald, October 25). Actually, Harold Wilson did it in the 1960s and 70s.
David Gray, Glasgow

Paying price of Brexit lies

I ALWAYS enjoy Lesley Riddoch’s column without necessarily agreeing with it, but the words "that Brexit has been an abject, economy-destroying failure" in this week's column ("What this crisis tells us about the real Conservative Party", The Herald, October 24) deserve a wider airing.

The economic, social and environmental impacts of Brexit are coming home to roost and play a large part in the divisiveness in our Government and society. The current poor governance of the country largely stems from the lies told during the Brexit campaign and the populism it encouraged.

And has our standing in the world ever been lower?
Willie Towers, Alford

Tie currency to the Euro

SEVERAL letters and numerous articles in The Herald have argued for the immediate post-independence introduction of a Scottish currency. There are dangers. International money markets, currency traders and hedge funds can with impunity attack the new currency, devaluing its worth.

The way forward is to tie/link the new Scottish pound to an established currency like the euro (as Denmark does). With a tie to the euro there will be market confidence and ease of international transactions. There will also be a direct line to accepting the euro on joining the EU.

Trying to establish a new fiat, stand-alone currency is the wrong choice for Scotland.
Thom Cross, Carluke

The ideal solution

IT'S encouraging to note that Robin Mather (Letters, October 25) appreciates William Muir's proposal (Letters, October 21) to limit independence referenda to once per decade and require a 60% winner's threshold. Maybe the idea is catching on.

The point of compromise is to break the deadlock and move forward, which is why this idea should appeal to both sides of the debate.

Independence supporters would get their referendum but would only succeed if they gain 60% of the vote, being significant backing of the population. Union supporters would have the comfort of knowing the result could be overturned after 10 years, providing they too won 60%. Whichever side won, the rest of us could get on with our lives in between.

One caveat: how many newly-independent countries have applied to return to their previous status?
David Bruce, Troon

Read more letters: There is no point in pinning any of our hopes on Labour


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