AS the full impact of the Budget sinks in, it is becoming clear that behind the battery of statistics and promises of billions the hard reality is that this is the Chancellor who has withdrawn £20 a week from the hardest-pressed families in the country – removing £1,040 a year from their household budgets.

Sleekit Sunak took away the Universal Credit uplift from six million people and restored it to two million people. What about the remaining four million people? He is giving away with one hand and taking it back with two. Millions of people will look at the claimed success of this cheapskate Chancellor and wonder why their pockets have been picked just when they are up against it. Where is the support for families facing energy price hikes? Where is the help for small businesses struggling to survive after Covid? Where is the fiscal stimulus to create the tens of thousands of new green jobs our economy needs?

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The Chancellor has the cheek to claim it is a Budget for the whole UK, and boast about funding projects in Scotland, just one week after sinking hopes of Scotland leading the carbon capture revolution and all that it means to Scotland’s green industrial future. He then sinks more millions into offshore wind development in Teeside. Not for the first time, a Tory Chancellor intends that the benefits of Scotland’s offshore energy resources will go south.

Sleekit Sunak ransacks Scottish resources and then asks us to be grateful for crumbs from the Westminster table. Only independence will unlock Scotland’s wealth for Scotland’s people.

Neale Hanvey MP
ALBA Westminster Leader

ENOUGH is enough.

Whether Scotland chooses to rejoin the EU or not, we cannot allow this band of Tory bandits we did not elect to continue manipulating our politics, impoverishing our people, and misleading our country.

Nicola, please name the day for indyref 2, or if you are not in a position to do that just yet, at least name the date early next year when you will “name the date”.

Scotland needs to know it can and will choose to be a free nation, deciding its own destiny and policies. We need to electrify politics in the way the 2012 announcement of an indyref electrified politics.

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And if the Tories refuse, and block the clearly mandated will of the Scottish people?

Then let them know loud and clear that the first following national election – whether a Westminster General Election or the next Scottish Holyrood election – will be used as a plebiscite election where ALL indy parties standing do so on a clear manifesto commitment to an immediate independent Scotland, such that a simple majority vote for those parties will constitute a democratic decision by the Scottish people to become independent

Right now, it’s too easy for Boris Johnson to dismiss us with an airy wave of his arrogant, patrician hand.

Let’s change that.

Steve Arnott

WOW! Wow! Wow! was my reaction to reading this week’s Sunday National. On Saturday I composed a letter in my head to you, saying: “If all those thousands of delegates to Glasgow’s COP truly cared about the planet, then they would just decide to commit (not just make unkept promises, as has happened in the past) to what could save the planet. Without their adding to global warming, a huge example would be there of what needs to be done. End of story.”

WATCH: Nicola Sturgeon interviewed on major CNN show as COP26 shines spotlight on Scotland

But did I send it? No. Why not? Because having worked before I retired last century in environment education, and even since then found almost no-one taking it seriously, I have long since become jaded. But reading all those informative articles in this Sunday’s National has lifted my spirits. Surely THIS time the world is waking up enough to take the steps which must be urgently acted on?

For several years now I’ve reckoned it’s already too late. How I’d love to find my despondency could be changed: congratulations to all the young people making efforts in Glasgow this week. And most of all we should be grateful to Greta Thunberg.

Catriona de Voil

THERE are simple answers to both letters that appeared in the Long Letter section last Wednesday (A new kind of British Isles Federation could be just what we need, Oct 27).

One, the fact that £50 billion of Scottish £85bn exports are to rUK proves that they NEED these goods. No-one buys things just to keep the seller happy, so these would either still be needed from us, or rUK would have to set about finding another source.

The renewable power we currently PAY to send them, but which is classed as our export, is a case in point. After independence, they would have to pay US, or find another source PDQ to keep their lights on!

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Perhaps the reason they are currently laying cables to source electricity, without charging, from Europe is because they have realised independence is coming and they might lose this cash cow, as well as power.

Two, if we rejoin the EU, not only will we immediately have opportunities for new markets, as Ireland has done, but we will trade with rUK on whatever terms rUK have agreed with the EU.

P Davidson

I HAVE thoroughly enjoyed your recent publication of the Yessays from a variety of participants. They have been uplifting and full of hope as to what can be achieved in a future independent Scotland.

Despite covering many of the serious issues we face, I even had a few “laugh out loud” moments when reading George Anderson’s “Don’t mean to be Rev IM Jolly ... but this is serious” contribution (Oct 27)!

Thanks are also due to the judging panel of Alan Riach, Lesley Riddoch, Roxanne Sorooshian and Callum Baird for all their time involved.

John Macleod