RUTH Marr (Letters, April 6) tells us that everything is rosy within the area of training in Scotland. But in December 2019 John Swinney admitted that 4 youngsters out of 10 from Scotland’s poorest areas are leaving main college with out reaching anticipated literacy ranges. Which means that they’re going into secondary college with one hand tied behind their backs. Is it then not surprising that additionally they underperform in secondary?
Within the Programme for Worldwide Pupil Evaluation (PISA) Scotland’s report within the topics of studying, maths and the sciences has plummeted to pre-2012 ranges. Within the Scottish Parliament, these figures have been described as shameful, appalling, and damming. Mr Swinney has been a catastrophe for Scotland’s training system and actually ought to be contemplating his place. We used to have the very best universities on the earth, however now we solely have one on the earth high 30.
Independence, for the sake of it, will do nothing to enhance the lives of the folks of Scotland. If I have been chief of the SNP I’d be concentrating on telling us how the social gathering will enhance our lives. The way it will enhance the economic system of Scotland and inform us its industrial technique to make Scotland nice once more, taking into account that we’re already out of the EU and after independence could be out of the UK, buying and selling with the world on WTO phrases. Not liking like Boris Johnson is inadequate motive to destroy Scotland for our grandchildren.
Lastly, I’d prefer to ask the SNP what foreign money Scotland will use, the way it will float in world cash markets, how a lot will it’s price in opposition to the pound and the euro for once we go on vacation, for these that may afford to, and the way the excessive rates of interest it is going to trigger will have an effect on our mortgages?
I’ve requested the SNP repeatedly for this data however hit a brick wall. Do its leaders not know, or haven’t they thought that far forward?
Tom Wylie, Elderslie.
* RUTH Marr contends that the SNP Authorities has delivered for its residents with all of the companies it dispenses “free”. Who does she assume pays for all of this?
In a inhabitants of roughly 4.5 million adults,solely 2.5 million pay earnings tax. Nearly 45 per cent of all Scottish adults, round two million, don’t pay earnings tax, due to this fact roughly 55% are subsidising this bounty – so not “free” for all, and prone to value much more as, inevitably, taxes will rise.
Isobel Hunter, Lenzie.
LABOUR AND TORIES AS BAD AS EACH OTHER
AT the time of the Smith Fee deliberations on extra powers for Holyrood, the Labour Get together argued in opposition to growing powers. Since that point the Tory Authorities, which had earlier proclaimed English votes for English legal guidelines, has at each alternative sought to undermine devolution and switch powers over issues instantly affecting Scotland to Westminster. Each the Labour and the Tory events argued in opposition to Brexit, but now each assist an settlement which denies Scotland entry to the EU single market and the Customs Union regardless of Scotland’s expressed want to stay within the EU with entry to each.
There was a time when the Labour Get together would have campaigned in opposition to nuclear proliferation however now it stays silent because the Tory Authorities units in movement plans to extend the potential devastation of Scotland’s largest metropolis, together with a lot of the Central Belt, whereas the actual decision-makers blissfully get pleasure from the advantages of controlling a lot of the UK’s wealth from their insulated London bubble. (If there are not any issues about potential catastrophic implications for the native inhabitants why are not any influential entrepreneurs selling Boris Johnson’s previously-proposed web site for “London Britannia Airport” on the Isle of Grain, within the Thames Estuary, in its place assist facility location for the UK’s nuclear submarines that are undesirable in Scotland?)
These voters who previously have supported both Labour or the Tories ought to assume once more if they really want for his or her youngsters to profit from comparable requirements set by our European neighbours. This isn’t merely a want to restore the highly-valued Erasmus programme however an argument geared toward all who genuinely want to construct a extra egalitarian in addition to a extra affluent society in Scotland. The one viable route is through independence and never through London-based Labour or Tory events that can inevitably work collectively to disclaim youngsters born in Scotland, and wishing to reside in Scotland, democratically free and impressive futures.
Stan Grodynski, Longniddry.
‘UNION 2’ WOULD NOT WORK
I NOTE an attention-grabbing historic perspective from Dr Allan Kennedy (“The Union might have been so completely different – and right here’s how”, The Herald, April 6). It’s to be famous that, aside from Cromwell’s interregnum, the connection between England and Scotland was regulated by negotiators. At a degree the place many in Scotland really feel the Union not works for them, and England has reverted to their historic disinterest (not least Tory Get together members), there are not any negotiators to “provide an answer to the constitutional wrangles of the 21st century”.
No actual shock: the Union parliament is topped by a Cupboard govt which poorly represents the 4 nations of the Union, and whose important operate is the governance of England. Led by an English nationalist who lamented a Scot changing into Prime Minister (which beneath English Votes for English Legal guidelines is not possible), however who surrounds himself with large Union flags at English coronavirus briefings, it appears unlikely the Union, as is, could be “saved” by a Union 2.
A confederation (or buying and selling Union) may work if Eire have been included, however, once more, English sentiment beneath this populist regime could be opposed. The performer often called “Boris” is adored in England (not least by the media) however he’s a roadblock to any sovereignty-sharing answer. Maybe Unionists might have a fundraiser to purchase him a villa in Tuscany or Mustique the place he might retire to, and write his tell-all memoirs.
GR Weir, Ochiltree.
* I BELIEVE that two important components which ultimately prevailed from the Scottish perspective in getting settlement to the winding-up of the Scottish Parliament in 1707, however the numerous opposition inside and out of doors Parliament, have been pretty simple. First, the peace of mind of money from England for a lot of the members, mirrored within the phrases of the track “We’re purchased and offered for English gold/Such a parcel of rogues in a nation”.
Secondly, there was the load of the easy argument, which proved persuasive to many in Parliament on the time, that they need to contemplate the numerous materials advantages to come back from such an alliance with England. Throughout nowadays of residing via a pandemic, one can nonetheless see the power of that argument, the effectiveness of which can little question be put to the check on the Holyrood elections subsequent month.
Ian W Thomson, Lenzie.
RENEWABLES CANNOT RUN THE GRID
SCOTTISH Renewables, the promotional physique funded by firms which generate renewable electrical energy lately issued a news launch declaring “97.4% of Scotland’s electrical energy consumption [was] met by renewables in 2020”. It wasn’t.
It was truly met all year long in very vital half by electrical energy from our nuclear energy stations – principally Torness operating continuously, supported partially by Hunterston and Peterhead gas-powered station.
These stations present important synchronous technology assist to grid stability more and more threatened by the rise in renewables technology. The 2 nuclear stations shall be retired this decade and Scotland has no plans to exchange them.
They’re essential in offering rotational inertia which acts as a system shock absorber throughout grid disturbances to maintain the frequency steady and localised wattless, reactive energy, important to preserving voltage steady as grid load traits fluctuate via the day.
With out them and enormous imports from Europe and England, which contribution Scottish Renewables appear to have wittingly missed in its faulty declare, throughout a number of lengthy calm durations of the yr when wind provided no output in any respect we’d have been sitting at midnight .
Moreover the £1bn DC interconnector from the Hunterston space to Wales in assist of exports commonly fails and we the invoice payers have to fulfill tens of millions of kilos yearly in constraint funds to the wind farm house owners to close down.
Scotland’s complete renewables technology could, arithmetically, have equalled this proportion of our complete annual utilization however we can’t use it to run our grid on the claimed stage because of the heightened stability threat and threat of near-instant collapse for a number of days at a time. Irrespective of what number of extra wind generators we construct this is not going to change.
So we’re left with an faulty sound chunk which can possible wrongly affect folks residing in Scotland, together with our flesh pressers, to imagine we will stably produce all of our electrical energy by wind alone with no important electrical assist from further synchronous sources.
DB Watson, Cumbernauld.
Learn extra: I am fed up listening to those that decry Scotland and its training system
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