AMIDST all the deal or No Deal of Brexit, it was interesting to hear Scottish independence and the prospect of indyref2 hitting the headlines.

But interesting and welcoming as this was, the source makes the prospects quite unlikely! The source being shadow chancellor John McDonnell MP informing voters in Scotland that a future Labour government would not oppose a future independence referendum.

READ MORE: John McDonnell says UK Labour won't block indyref2

Unlikely, because the prospect of a Labour government returning to power dwindles by the day. In making this announcement the shadow chancellor has recognised that support for Scottish independence has reached heights in excess of 50%. But internally for his own party in Scotland, John McDonnell has merely sent Scottish Labour into yet another crisis of identity, setting their sights and efforts on the fall-out of this announcement, taking their eye off the ball of Boris Johnson and his pro-Brexit Cabinet racing towards a No-Deal.

But was it any wonder shadow chancellor John McDonnell raised the profile of indyref2 as Scotland teeters on the cliff-edge of a No-Deal Brexit, a No Deal which will plunge many hard working individuals and families into economic crisis, threaten thousands of jobs and put medical supplies at risk. The Labour Party’s U-turn on indyref2 is very welcome and begs the question, will Scottish Labour support their shadow chancellor's vision for Scotland’s future?

Catriona C Clark

IN Andrew Learmonth’s article about Labour at war over indyref2 (Labour at war over indyref2 as McDonnell promises not to block a new referendum, August 7), Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell is quoted as referring to Westminster as “the English parliament itself”.

READ MORE: McDonnell: indyref2 plans will be submitted to 'English parliament'

Revealing language indeed, and clearly indicative of the real underlying attitude of so many Unionist politicians of whichever party.

In reality it has never been anything other than an English parliament serving English interests. Is Scottish Labour finally waking up to this? I have my doubts. Anyway, I look forward to the day when Ian Blackford leads our SNP MPs out of the place for the last time ... and home to an independent Scotland.

Billy Scobie

VERY interesting summation by Kevin McKenna of Scottish Labour’s death throes (Labour is dying slowly in Scotland ... what’s the worst that could happen if they backed independence?, August 7) in which he traced its difficulty to its loss of politicians who had some serious political nous and ability.

READ MORE: Labour is dying in Scotland ... time to consider backing independence

My reading of these events can more easily be summarised by suggesting, latterly – from Scottish Labour’s point of view – its political structure simply became a “gravy train” for Labour activists to follow regardless of their actual ability. It became something akin to “its muggin’s turn”.

But I have little interest in that – my major concern, looking to the future, is its counter weight, namely the leadership from within the SNP.

In the past, all its leaders were – and some still are – people who “cut their teeth” in politics when, campaigning on the doorstep the SNP, irrespective of its message, was a considered a joke.

The real and very serious challenge facing the SNP is to ensure, with the passage of time, it simply does not supplant Scottish Labour and provide that same “gravy train” structure for the “muggins”.

Alan McKinney
Via email

RUTH Davidson is quoted in yesterday’s National apparently expressing empathy for those struggling financially in the face of impending Brexit (Fracture in Davidson’s fragile truce with PM, August 7).

READ MORE: Ruth Davidson's fragile truce with Boris Johnson fractured over Brexit

Her class-consciousness, however, flounders rapidly on the rock of revealed insight.

The millions who live every month on their overdraft are certainly suffering, but where is Ms Davidson’s compassion and concern for those who couldn’t get an overdraft from a bank with a striped jersey, a mask and a gun? What does she propose to do for those dependent on food banks, pay day shysters and loan sharks and the welfare system which her party, with her wholehearted support, has comprehensively trashed?

The reek of hypocrisy clings to her every utterance.

Les Hunter

I AM raging for another year. I speak as a retired secondary and primary qualified teacher of many years.

I have taught in various stages, including all areas of special needs, over a period of 20-plus years. The idea that standards can continue to rise is ludicrous. Every year brings different kids to an exam situation, these kids are individuals, not necessarily exam material.

Every child comes from a different background – some where books are common, others not. To expect every teaching establishment to make ground every year is nonsense. We are talking silk purses and sow’s ears here. I and any other educator can only work with those pupils in front of us. The notion that every passing year will bring huge improvement is ridiculous, in 50 years everyone will be a genius!

Let’s look at a more holistic programme, where results are not calculated in A results in Highers, let’s look at where students can pursue their callings, vocational or academic. Let’s actually value where students' strengths are. Not everyone has to go to uni, this was a myth promoted by Blair. It does not hold.

We need gas engineers, plumbers etc, people who make the world go round. My advice to the ever ready critics of this SNP government, shut up and face the front, as was thought in many a classroom in my day. There is no one-size-fits-all in a realistic education service. I have spoken!

Wendy Wilson