I READ with interest your editorial on Brexit (“Danger of turning hard right on EU", The Herald, January 16). Although a well-reasoned piece, there was not a lot a "soft" Remainer (like myself) who has "moved on" could agree with - especially the idea we should abandon our control on migration as it would mean sacrificing membership of the single market regardless of the fact that it was one of the main reasons people voted for Brexit.

You suggest that the UK Government should compromise in its negotiations lest we all end up paying the price. This would sound a sensible approach under normal circumstances, but in the absence of any movement by the EU on any of the fundamental aims of Brexit it makes it impossible for the UK Government to make any progress without compromising the result of the UK-wide referendum.

Clearly the EU feels it holds all the cards and thinks it is only a matter of time before the UK caves in and will go cap in hand to the negotiation table once Theresa May triggers Article 50 in March. However that could prove to be a very dangerous assumption by the EU, the "hard" Remainers and the Scottish Government, who have harnessed themselves to a soft Brexit deal.

First, the Trump factor cannot be underestimated, whereby the President-elect has made it abundantly clear in an interview by Michael Gove that the US will support Brexit by prioritising a "fair" trade deal as quickly as possible with the UK whilst at the same time casting doubt about the foundering EU-US trade talks and indeed the very future of the EU. Furthermore the Chancellor has told the EU that if there cannot be a "clean" Brexit then the UK would not hesitate to change our economic model to represent a more "Singapore approach" to business which would mean lower corporation tax and deregulation in order to restore competitiveness.

In summary there should be no doubt the US endorsement of Brexit has huge implications and will act as a game changer by not only placing us on the front foot in negotiations with the EU but will also encourage other countries to do bilateral trade deals with the UK.

Perhaps rather than Nicola Sturgeon being wrong-footed (yet again) she should have listened to some of her former big hitters in the SNP who admitted they voted for Brexit.

Ian Lakin,

Pinelands, Murtle Den Road, Milltimber, Aberdeen.

OUR Westminster political leaders have started to talk about where we are in the negotiations on Brexit. On the basis of these statements, the pound crashed again in the currency markets today (January 16). At the time of writing, it is down more than 20 per cent on the dollar and more than 13 per cent on the euro since the time when everyone thought we would vote to stay in. The stock market booms, as most of the big companies are mostly based on the dollar, and the Brexiters crow in the short term. Very shortly we will see the real effect on the real economy, on the value of the pound in your pocket that you spend in the shops. Harold Wilson dismissed the effect of devaluation in these words back in the day but we reaped the inflationary whirlwind with mortgage interest rates at 15 per cent soon after. It can never happen again, can it?

More likely will be that we have a rapid continuation in the descent into a low wage, mechanised economy where the poorest in our society will carry the heaviest burden. Our local supermarket starts a refurbishment next week that will see checkout staff replaced by self-service tills and this is being replicated in every industry. In my bank I am now directed to a row of machines that will count coins, will read and accept cheques and will dispense cash.

I note your report that the richest eight people on the planet own more than half of the world’s population put together (“Eight billionaires are rich as half world’s population, says charity”, The Herald, January 16) and this trend is set to be reinforced by the probable policies of our UK Government and the leaders of multi-national corporations. Those at the bottom are being cast adrift by those wielding the levers of power in self-interested greed.

We must never forget that there is another option.

DS Blackwood,

1 Douglas Drive East, Helensburgh.

IT is profoundly depressing to note the constitutional ignorance of the Prime Minister, who seems not to understand the difference between a nation and a state.

In her expected speech she will declare that the UK is “one nation”; this is, of course, nonsense. What she might say is that the UK is one state, composed of several nations, of which England is just one.

Her failure to recognise this is leading her, and us, into enormous difficulties, not least when she impudently lectures us about respecting the results of the EU referendum. Will she recognise that Scotland, a constituent nation of the state (and a founder-member of the UK), voted overwhelmingly to stay in the EU, and respect that result? Somehow, I don't think so, and Scotland should probably seek its own future without Mrs May.

Donald R Buchanan,

75 Antonine Road, Bearsden.