I DON'T know what planet Humza Yousaf is living on but it doesn't seem to be the one on which Scotland is located. To say that independence will bring each Scot an extra £10,200 ("Yousaf: Independence could give the average Scot an extra £10k", January 7) seems an extravagant claim which appears at odds with the current economic situation and in particular, the use of devolved powers.

A black hole of £1.5 billion; a transport system which doesn't deliver; an ailing NHS and cutting funding to councils to the bone, are hardly the bedrocks on which to build a prosperous country which would deliver the First Minister's fantasy benefits. Of course, all Scotland's problems supposedly stem from Westminster, a view which I find difficult to grasp given the extra cash from south of the Border through the Barnett Formula and the like.

Surely if the SNP can't handle its own party finances properly, there is little chance of the same individuals achieving Mr Yousaf's dream and it would probably turn into a nightmare if they tried.

Bob MacDougall, Kippen.

• SNP spin is alive and well in Humza Yousaf's latest pronouncement on independence. This is fantasy politics in action.

First, there is the word "could" which, in itself, is a get out of jail free card. Second there is the "average" Scot. Do any of us know one?

If someone gains £10k then, given the state of SNP/Green economics, someone must have lost £10k. Most Scots have long since given up on financial pronouncements from the SNP as there are far too few with much money left and far too many needing it. The party's own finances are in deficit as is Scotland's under Mr Yousaf.

As the SNP's grip on reality and economics fades, so too do its chances of electoral success. It's the economy, stupid.

Dr Gerald Edwards, Glasgow.

Read more: Why do so many Scots keep falling for SNP fantasies?

Alba deserves a chance

I HAD to agree with most of the comments that your correspondents made regarding Ruth Wishart's column on independence ("Up for indy? Then you might as well vote for Rishi over Keir", December 31).

There will no doubt be a backlash against the SNP/Greens in any future elections. They collectively have wasted the momentum since 2014. It gives me no pleasure as a former SNP member to say this. According to polls, there is still a hunger and desire for independence: just not with the present lot.

It seems to me that no exposure has been given to the Alba Party in the Scottish media.This fledgling party has similar small beginnings as the SNP had. It seems that the mere mention of Alex Salmond is like a poisoned chalice to most political commentators. Remember, he was acquitted of all charges in the notorious case brought against him and is now pursuing his accusers in court. I would urge all disappointed and disgruntled independence voters to open their minds to this alternative party, or we’re on a “jam tomorrow" promise from the aptly-nicknamed “Blush Pink” party.

Veronica Nelson, Edinburgh.

Throwback to first Gulf War

JOHN Lloyd (Letters, January 7) seems to like being at war. He makes unsubstantiated allegations that Iran is about to unleash attacks against its adversaries on multiple fronts.

He writes that “Iran is threatening UK citizens”. This reminds me of the run-up to the first Gulf War when claims were made that Iraq could hit UK territory with missiles with 45 minutes' notice. The war happened but the attack on UK territory didn't. This was just one of many fake news stories pushed out just before both gulf wars which seemed to be about getting public support for war.

Mr Lloyd doesn't mention that US and UK intelligence services were instrumental in the overthrow of the legitimate Iranian government in 1953. Perhaps this is what led to a line of despotic rulers in Iran to this day.

He claims that Gen Z in Iran is locked in a war with its rulers. Presumably he has seen a few young Iranian women on TV discussing how they were going out with their hair showing and getting into trouble with the police. This is certainly a small minority of Iranian women. I have visited Turkey as recently as October, and also the UAE. These Islamic countries don't force women to wear headscarves but I saw plenty of young women happily doing so.

Geoff Moore, Alness.

Read more: Why do so many Scots keep falling for SNP fantasies?

UK policies have shades of 1984

NEW rules came into force on January 3, 2024 where a minimum electric car sales target was set for manufacturers that sell cars in the UK. For 2024 the target is 22 per cent and this will go up every year, reaching 80 per cent by 2030. If a manufacturer goes over the yearly allowance for petrol or diesel cars they will be fined £15,000 for each car so 10 cars over would mean a fine of £150,000 and 100 over would be £1.5 million.

Projections indicate that there will be only 31.1 million EVs on the world's roads by 2030 and 73m by 2040. Miniscule. There are already 33.2m petrol/diesel cars in the UK and 1.474 billion in the world so this EV diktat is pointless.

Does any sane person think that a significant number of other countries will ban petrol/diesel cars? Tens of millions of old high-polluting cars have been shipped to the developing world for decades. The UK Government's dictatorial green policies have shades of George Orwell's novel 1984.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow.

The Herald: Sean Connery as James BondSean Connery as James Bond (Image: PA)

A view to a thrill

I BEGAN reading Catriona Stewart’s three-page review of the James Bond movies (“Is James Bond a relic of the past, or a ‘real’ man?”, January 7) with a degree of trepidation. I suspected that this was never going to be a supportive piece and so it turned out.

As a committed and unrepentant Bond fan I find it very difficult to contribute any objective comment which might be taken seriously but what did Ms Stewart tell us that we didn’t already know? And three pages to do it. I think she must have real issues with Mr Bond.

What she failed to add was that our flawed hero saves the world from some very naughty boys in each of his outings. In other words he keeps the British end up, so perhaps a little more appreciation should be shown?

If this is the first in a series of trigger warning reviews, might I suggest that Ms Stewart’s next mission (should she choose to accept it of course) should be to have a squint at the lyrics of some highly revered and critically acclaimed musicals?

There she will find amongst other things that there is “nothing like a dame” in the South Pacific and that Olivia Newton-John is looking for a man to keep her satisfied (to the extent that she forsakes her nice pinafore dress for a spray-on black catsuit. This in turn gives John Travolta “the chills” which apparently multiply to the extent that he feels he is losing control). Ms Newton-John is urging him to “shape up" which may be undermining his self-esteem, leading to performance anxiety and possibly PTSD for Mr Travolta.

Or is it all just a bit of escapist fun and good music and if it is “of its time” we are all smart enough to understand that without patronising trigger warnings from the BFI or other censors?

Keith Swinley, Ayr.

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Waterloo sunset

I WAS looking forward to seeing the new series of Waterloo Road, but the first two episodes have been very disappointing, going from the frivolous to the plain daft.

I think the Waterloo Road school needs a new syllabus to get it sparked up again into an entertaining reflection of modern education.

Dennis Forbes Grattan, Aberdeen.