THE strident refusal by Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer to consider any putative Labour/SNP agreement after the next Westminster elections in order to lock out the Tories is as stupid as it is unfathomable (Starmer says UK ‘better together’ as he rules out pact with SNP, Jan 5).

It is stupid because the people of Scotland should not have to bear the brunt of yet more Tory attacks on the poor and vulnerable if the Westminster arithmetic throws up a potential anti-Tory coalition.

It is unfathomable because Welsh Labour is in a coalition with Plaid Cymru and the Irish Labour Party in the Republic of Ireland has been in coalition with other parties over many decades. Therefore, the Starmer veto is not based on some longstanding Labour tenet of faith but on simply his personal right-of-centre prejudices.

READ MORE: Lesley Riddoch: Keir Starmer’s inherent conservatism is just too much for Scots

But the re-modelling of UK Labour into a “patriotic party” a la New Labour by Team Starmer does raise serious questions of what is the true nature of the British Labour Party. Whilst all parties are broad churches, I have to apologise to my friends on the Labour left and conclude that the left perspective is a minority school of thought and that red, white and blue Labour is the dominant voice of UK Labour. The evidence for this lies in political history and whilst Tony Blair was the father of New Labour, the grandfather of New Labour was undoubtedly Ramsay MacDonald’s National Labour, which backed the Tory-dominated National Government in the 1930s.

Consider also that by the late 1940s many National Labour luminaries were back in the Labour Party and it was Labour governments which enthusiastically joined Nato in 1949, sent British troops into various colonial forays in the 1960s, and disgracefully upgraded the Polaris missile programme in the late 1970s behind the backs of parliamentarians. The Union Jack flew over the Labour Party long before the Blairite ascendency, and independence supporters should not be slow to remind the Scottish electorate of that fact come the next Westminster elections.

Cllr Andy Doig
Scotia Future

IN this brave new world we must never underestimate the power of British or English nationalism. In the 1980s the dogmatic force of Margaret Thatcher prepared the way for a devolved Scottish Parliament. In the 2020s the corrupt chaos of Boris Johnson will pave the way for an independent Scotland; probably also for Wales, along with a united Ireland.

In modern times, with plummeting personal polls, Boris is possibly the worst Prime Minister ever. However, like Maggie he is a positive catalyst for Scottish independence!

Tory party leaders remain opposed to devolution and continue to undermine it, even as Boris talks up his “precious” four nations. The fact is, English nationalism now controls the Tory and Labour parties as the disaster of Brexit continues to create havoc throughout the UK.

Grant Frazer

READ MORE: Here’s how a distinctly Scottish, democratic honours system could work

FOLLOWING the public outcry anent his knighthood, and the news that neither the Queen nor the Cabinet is able to stop this unbelievable honour, if Tony Blair had a shred of decency he would take the initiative and decline the honour.

This is obviously too much to expect from one of those who only wish to feather their own nest. I have great admiration for those who refuse such “honours”.

Edith Davidson
via email

OF course SIR Keir has come riding to the defence of SIR Tony. Twa cheeks o’ the same arse!

Thom Muir

LABOUR party for the working classes? It’s a joke! And they still don’t know why they are losing voters every day of the week.

George Mitchell