IN the Western world today, lies have replaced truth in service of the plutocracy. The UK Government is actively rubbishing its own Brexit forecasts. The Brexit Minster even went as far as to accuse his own civil servants of being engaged in a conspiracy to undermine Brexit.

The US Government is at war with itself, with sections of the US Congress undermining the FBI investigation into Trump.

Perhaps the most remarkable feature of this nauseating spectacle is the inability of the Westminster and Washington governments to deal seriously with any of the myriad crises engulfing the world economy.

The Tory head-bangers’ post-Brexit plan is a fantasy festival of reaction and political filth. All they have is hate-filled invectives filled with paeans to the empire, and military, fascistic attacks on immigrants, and invocations of religion, royals and the Union flag.

The Brexit process is a hollow ritual, whose essential emptiness is an expression of the crisis and decay of the UK’s position internationally.

In this new Orwellian world, reality itself has become the enemy. If reality contradicts propaganda it must be denied. There is an unspoken strategy by UK Government departments, tax-exempt think tanks funded by the ruling interests, and media acting in behalf of a war and police state agenda, to shape perceived reality as it is described in George Orwell’s book, 1984.

This embarrassing spectacle has even infected Holyrood. Feather-brained Unionist politicians demand things from the SNP government that are then delivered. Those same Unionists then vote against the things they demanded. Even better, they then ask the Holyrood government to deliver things they are not legislatively responsible for.
Alan Hinnrichs

SOME 150 years ago my house was built using timbers taken from our colonies, at about the same time that we were at war with the Chinese over their refusal to accept the import of opium from our Indian possessions.

How history flies past us. Now our Prime Minister, while severing our alliances with Continental Europe, engages in trade talks with China and, just possibly, wonders why she does not receive the kow-towing due to Her Majesty’s principal officer of state.

Is it possible that those who believe in the continuity of our union of four equal partner nations might have misunderstood the events of the last century? Might they believe the developing world has time for an offshore island which has wilfully destroyed its strong manufacturing industries, participated in the global financial collapse, and is in the process of isolating itself from one of the world’s most significant markets?

There is time yet to save ourselves from the folly of imperial nostalgia and its associated xenophobia. The sorry spectacle of Teresa May hand-bagging her tawdry goods around markets decent folk might avoid is not what we voted for in 2014, 2015, 2016 or 2017.

It is time now for the parliamentarians elected last May to prove their worth by respecting the elective will of the people of Scotland to stay united with our European friends, with whom we hold ties over many, many centuries. I will not hold my breath, but if they have self-respect rather than seek Westminster laurels they may heed my words.
KM Campbell

HAVING been a regular reader since the inception of The National it has been great to to see the variety of subjects covered. Many thanks to Greg Russell for his interesting article on the famous Hall Russel shipyard in Aberdeen which closed in 1992 (Hall Russell: Famous Aberdeen yard’s final ship sets sail, The National, January 26). Although the Clyde was most associated with shipbuilding in Scotland, there were many other yards: Dundee, Leith, Burntisland, Troon, Ardrossan, Campbeltown.
John Macleod

WERE we forewarned? A good while ago, in an early Sunday morning news bulletin, BBC Radio 2 announced that the proposed Great Repeal Bill would incorporate EU legislation into English law. Later bulletins were altered, and I thought that it had just been the usual “English equals British” attitude prevalent in London. But now I have to wonder.
Jim Clark