HOW do we convince people of the case for independence? Marches, street stalls and political blogs are all fine – but what if folk stand and stare, walk by or have never read a political blog in their life?

In an open letter to all of the Yes movement, the Scottish Independence Convention (due to re-launch on St Andrew’s Day) says it is these people we must reach.

There is a lot of talk about crowdfunding. In the case of the Scottish Independence Convention they hope to raise funds to provide toolkits, aiding local groups and the national movement to change the story we hear in the media.

But what if one of the ways to convince the majority that Scotland should be independent is to hit everyone with the story direct? What if crowdfunding were to pay for print information sent out as targeted mailshots, just like marketing campaigns? What if we spoke directly to people through the letter box, explaining our real social, cultural, historical, political and economic position?

The National gets this message across brilliantly. But even its excellent journalism can only dent the resistance from the readers of the Scottish Unionist press.

At around 125,000 members the SNP has a huge base, and we know that 45% of Scotland voted Yes at the last referendum. So at just £5 per person we could probably raise a Printing Fund of £7.5 million!

Years ago, returning from work, I found a postcard-sized mailshot from the SNP. The information convinced me to vote SNP.

During the 2014 referendum masses of excellent information was delivered by activists. But sometimes areas were missed and highly informative stuff was in short supply.

Maybe it’s time to manage the challenge on a really massive national scale, with far more use of direct mailing to offset Unionist media bias.

Sheila Johnston

JIM Sillars was right to point out that the SNP was at a low ebb when the sitting Labour MP Bruce Millan gave up the Govan seat to become European Community Commissioner (The SNP’s 1988 by-election win directly led to the Scottish Parliament ... and the indyref, November 6). The SNP, blamed for precipitating the 1987 election which brought Mrs Thatcher to power, had polled 10.4% of the vote in the election. Labour now held a huge majority of the seats in Scotland. If a Scottish card existed, it had not been played. Mrs Thatcher’s Government had an attitude to Scotland later expressed as there being no such thing as Community was resented.

A few days after the election a Vote Labour poster in Govan had written across it: “We did, so now what?

The Govan constituency branch knew it was going to be a difficult seat to win and that it would need an excellent candidate and massive canvassing effort directed by SNP headquarters. The redoubtable Kenneth Fee checked out opinions on who should be approached as candidate and at the selection meeting the constituency branch chose Jim Sillars.

I can understand Alan McKinney (Letters, November 7) being concerned that the SNP name and logo should appear on every piece of campaign literature. I am only aware of one such featuring The Proclaimers: “No more cap in hand – we can change Scotland for the better”. From the candidate came the message: “the SNP has changed. We have improved our policies, re-defined our aim of independence and now argue sensibly for Scotland to be an independent member of the European Community. Not separate from but part of Europe, with our own government representing our own interests”.

The impact of the SNP win was massive, and again I agree with Mr Sillars about the effect. It brought the belief that if the SNP can win in Govan, it can win any seat in Scotland. It took a wee while to prove that though.

Alastair Glen

WHILST reading David Pratt’s article about Trump’s “amazing victory” in the US mid-terms I was interested to read his comment about how now the US Congress will be able to get stuck in about Trump’s various business and political affairs (More divided than ever, November 8).

What really caused astonishment for me though was David’s claim that the House intelligence committee was one of a number of House committees which will now have the power to subpoena and hence investigate Trump.

I think I can save all those Congressmen and women a lot of time, effort and expense here. It is a well known and certifiable fact that Trump has absolutely no intelligence whatsoever. In fact a discarded pumpkin has scientifically been proven to be more intelligent than Trump.

If anyone doubts this then they need only watch a recently shared video of Trump descending the aircraft steps from Air Force One to his car, waiting right at the bottom of the stairs, only for him to turn right and walk by it, whereupon a secret agent had to stop him and “redirect” him back to his car.

Lesley-Anne McLelland

READING David Pratt’s excellent article (My thoughts are with all victims of all wars, November 9), I was reminded of elements of the argument that are rarely if ever mentioned.

It is not the people who fight a war that creates that war, it is their political, cultural or religious leaders who do so. Therefore while the act of remembrance rightly recognises those who made the sacrifice, it should also serve as a salutary reminder to our politicians that it is their rhetoric and calls to defend the motherland which usually involves attacking other’s motherlands which are the problem. Compounded of course by the military-industrialists who make huge profits from that misery.

Politicians start wars and it is the people who pay the price for ending them. Speaking as an ex-soldier with 15 years of service.

Nick Cole
Meigle, Perthshire