INTERESTING article from Kevin McKenna (Many of us on the left have forgotten what it was we didn’t like about the EU, The National, February 28). He recaps and summarises the socialist concerns with the EU. I agree with most of Mr McKenna’s points, however I disagree with his suggestion that not voting in the 2016 EU referendum was the “only honest option for an authentic socialist”.

I suggest that spoiling the ballot paper is a more appropriate response. Not turning out to vote suggests disinterest. I have spoiled my ballot paper in every European election or referendum since I was eligible to vote. I think European politics is important but I want to protest that the EU has become a self-serving, elitist and undemocratic corporate bureaucracy.

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I wish more socialist Scots had done the same in 2016.

Coinneach Wright
Inbhir Nis

I THINK the snide tone of Tom Crozier’s response to my letter (Letters, March 1) is an example of what stops indy2 supporters who are critical of the EU from expressing their views. If the only response to those who hold an alternative view to the mainstream one is to insult them, then the argument is a weak one.

I noted that Mr Crozier did not respond to Kevin McKenna’s criticisms of the EU, and they are many. Anyone who watched last night’s Channel 4 coverage of the rise of fascism in parts of Italy will have been shocked by its blatancy, but it is their response to the EU’s autocratic decisions imposed on their country. Opposition to the EU on the same grounds is widespread, but so far has been ignored by its leaders.

To turn a deaf ear to these protests is unwise. To delude ourselves that the EU is a democratic association in which every member state has an equal voice is unrealistic.

I have never claimed that we should have no relations with the EU: I just don’t want to be governed by it. In an earlier letter I suggested that an independent Scotland might be like Iceland – trading with the EU but, for instance, controlling our banks.

As one of the 38 per cent of Scots who voted leave, I am frustrated by the blanket support for membership of the EU at the expense of any exploration of an alternative future for an independent Scotland, and that is not because there isn’t one. It feels like propaganda.

What we should be doing is welcoming intelligent discussion of a range of possible futures. In any negotiation, whilst proposing plan A, successful negotiators have a well-thought-out plan B and even a C.

Let us recognise the need for this, explore options B and C without rancour, proving that Scottish people take freedom of speech seriously and stop pretending that membership of the EU is the only game in town.

Lovina Roe

LOVINA Roe raised the dilemma about a future Scotland being in the EU (Letters, February 28). As she sees it, the choice between being “governed from Brussels or Westminster”.

First of all the EU-union is a different union in structure, process and constitution from the UK incorporating Union of 1707, which has no written constitution. The word Union is applied to the UK, but all that happened was the Scotland was effectively incorporated into a Greater, Expanded England!

In the EU, Scotland would have a separate seat alongside the other members and have full voting and veto rights. The UK does not recognise the rights of the separate nations at Westminster to leave voluntarily. The Greater “English” block, which sees itself as British, holds sway at Westminster.

One difference between the EU and the Westminster set-up suffices to indicate the different scenario Scotland would be in as an EU member. It would not need to ask, beg or threaten the EU or the EU Parliament for permission to leave the EU-union!

Perhaps that can help to show that Scotland could from within the EU can still exercise ultimate independence by leaving.

John Edgar

HOW the Unionists must hate Norway. It consistently shows what a competently managed independent country of only four million people can achieve.

Yesterday’s report from its Sovereign Wealth Fund (the fund created by investing some of its oil revenues) announced that its income on investments for the last year was an amazing $131 billion. Four times Scotland’s entire annual budget, and that is only the income. The actual fund is $1.1 trillion.

The usual Unionist comments about Norway’s success are to the effect that a pint of beer costs £7 and they pay high taxes. They never mention that Norwegians have salaries on average twice those in the UK and pensions three times higher.

By every measure they are much better off than us, and their fund will last for the foreseeable future. We, of course, have no oil fund at all, as Westminster spent the lot.

James Duncan

FOR how much longer is the abysmal Boris Johnson going to be allowed to embarrass Britain nationally and internationally before the Tory party get rid of him? Surely even the craven, mediocre misfits in the current sixth-form common room of the Conservative party cannot be entirely inured to that fact that one of their own is single-handedly and repeatedly dragging Britain’s badly tarnished reputation further and deeper into the slurry.

Amanda Baker