KEITH Howell (Letters, March 13) complains about the SNP "seeing nothing good in any plan the UK proposes", but there were plenty in Theresa May's own party, as well as in all the other political parties, who saw nothing good in the proposed plan, and voted accordingly. Mr Howell's contention that an independent Scotland could find itself out of the EU is just another strand of Project Fear; politicians in several EU countries, including Spain and Ireland, have already made encouraging noises, and it seems highly unlikely that the EU would turn down a major oil-producing nation such as Scotland, especially as the strong vote to remain indicates that Scotland would be a constructive member of the EU.

The very fact that the elected First Minister of Scotland has to ask permission to hold a second independence referendum says everything about Scotland's position within the UK. So much for all the promises made in 2014 of Scotland being not only an equal partner in the UK, but Scotland "leading the UK". David Cameron did not need to seek permission from the EU to call his Brexit referendum; given that voters in Scotland elected the SNP on a manifesto which stated "there would be no second independence referendum unless there was a significant and material change of circumstance, such as Scotland being taken out of the EU against our will" that in itself should stand as the mandate to give Scottish voters the right to choose their future.

Ruth Marr,

99 Grampian Road, Stirling.

PG Wodehouse’s dictum, "it has never been difficult to distinguish between a Scotsman with a grievance and a ray of sunshine", has never been truer than in the age of SNP ascendancy. What is evident now is that if a Scottish nationalist cannot identify a genuine grievance, he or she will invent one. Thus it is with Michael Russell, MSP, a former education minister with a disastrous track record. Mr Russell claims that, at a meeting in Downing Street, Nicola Sturgeon was told that she "simply wasn’t bright enough" to understand the Prime Minister’s ill-starred Brexit deal. This has become headline news, simply because Mr Russell claimed it ("Russell accuses UK Government of ‘behaving like a dictator’ and calls for equality between home nations", The Herald, March 13). A spokesman for No 10 said that his claim was "ridiculous", but an unverified claim can be halfway round the newsrooms before a rebuttal has its boots on. Apparently, there is nothing objectionable about Ms Sturgeon telling Mrs May that she is "running scared" of another separation referendum.

We know that the SNP leadership is waging a constant campaign to vilify and discredit the Government, and indeed the system, at Westminster, but its incessant opposition for the sake of opposition is becoming extremely tedious.

Jill Stephenson,

Glenlockhart Valley, Edinburgh.

I NOTE that the SNP is trying to talk up the idea of holding another independence referendum. One might ask the question: when is it not? Presumably this will entail Scotland having a separate economy and currency from the rest of the UK. This might well just be described as a pipe-dream on the part of what is obviously now a minority administration.

As is now obvious to the majority of Scotland's electorate, there is simply no viable economic argument or rationale for the SNP's narrow political ambition. It certainly does not have an answer to what currency an independent Scotland would use; or how Scotland would cope without a Central Bank. This may well sound like cauld kale het up, but it poses a major problem which simply is not going to disappear.

Then there is the claim by the SNP spin doctors that Scotland would continue to be a member of the EU, but it is the UK which is currently a member of that body. And, as a prospective new member of Europe, is Scotland's economic deficit likely to make it attractive to the EU? I am sure they have had enough problems with the Greek economy.

In the real world how will the SNP seriously ever hope to persuade the Scottish electorate to consider voting for independence when it is highly likely to put at risk their pensions, investments, mortgages and other finances – indeed in some instances even their sources of welfare?

Not that such obvious economic problems are likely to have much influence or effect on the more zealous members of the independence movement. In a flurry of patriotic obstinacy some would certainly defy all logic, and cling to a potential 'sinking ship'.

I am sure that the UK will emerge from its changing relationship with the EU stronger, both politically and economically.

Robert IG Scott,

Northfield, Ceres, Fife.