I DON’T envy Angela Rayner’s job as deputy to Starmer. The FT reported that Labour will water down workers’ rights, which Rayner denies. But the evidence suggests the FT is spot-on.

Labour has abandoned its commitments to both full-time and gig economy workers. It ignored striking public-sector workers and fired Rayner’s partner, shadow transport minister Sam Tarry, for joining them on the picket line. At the party’s national policy forum last month it rowed back a pledge to protect contract workers.

Defending the working class extends beyond workers’ rights to social policies that protect the most vulnerable. On that score, too, Labour falls short of its founding ideals. For evidence look no further than its planned retention of the cruel Tory two-child benefit cap and bedroom tax and Starmer’s refusal to commit to free hot meals for primary school kids.

READ MORE: Ex-Scottish Labour official says UK party 'betraying' devolution

Meanwhile, shadow chancellor Reeves attends private meetings with Tory donors to reassure them that nothing will change under a Labour regime. In exchange, they are flooding Labour’s campaign coffers with money.

Labour has gone full neoliberal with its nonsensical pledge to “address the root causes of poverty while keeping a tight grip on finances” – code for austerity. It tolerates corporate monopoly power but attacks workers and unions who dare to seek a larger piece of the pie.

It’s a shame Labour’s branch office in Glasgow lacks the courage to break from its English masters.

Leah Gunn Barrett

WHEN Anas Sarwar reiterates his opposition to independence, when no reminder is needed, and then goes on to say that “doesn’t mean you don’t have the right to support independence, or the right to wish a referendum at some point in the future”, my flabber is totally gasted!

He may as well have said those who support independence have the right to breathe.

Yes, Anas Sarwar is full of meaningless guff. But do listen out for strings of double negatives that are intended to make the practically meaningless just that wee bit less intelligible. Or, wait a minute, could this just be an Anas way of saying (anaspeak) that those who support independence have absolutely no right to a referendum now or at any time in the near future?

READ MORE: Anas Sarwar says Scots have the right to wish for a second referendum

Well, help ma boab. Who would have guessed?

I hasten to add that all this disnae mean that Anas is in anyway inclined to support those who widnae grant independence voters the right to breathe. Let’s be clear aboot that, at least until the next dose of anaspeak.

When he says “I’m not hostile to anyone” (when allegedly the SNP have claimed he is hostile to independence supporters), I think I can hear a cacophony of disbelief from rape clause and bedroom tax victims, as well as asylum-seekers. Actually, in this case, it’s tempting to think that he just forgot to throw in a double negative.

Anyway, next time you hear some anaspeak, with plenty to come in Rutherglen, just grab a megaphone and shout “Whit’s that got to dae wi’ the price o’ bread?”, and at least you will always be relevant.

Alan Adair

HAS the Labour Party been discussing whether or not we should have the right to support independence? Although Anas Sarwar has ruled out a referendum for the present, perhaps he could tell us the Scottish Labour Party’s opinion on the gaps that it feels there should be between periods when we are allowed to wish for an independence referendum.

John Jamieson
South Queensferry

IN an era of five-point political strategies, First Minister Humza Yousaf might consider the following suggestions in his goal of leading Scotland to independence within the next five years:

1. Reaffirm the SNP’s commitment to independence by exploiting appropriate elements of proposals by Believe in Scotland, Salvo and other pro-independence groups with a clear strategy based on a “double-majority mandate” from the next General Election backed by a pledge from all successful SNP candidates not to stand for re-election unless either mandate is enacted and also backed by a declaration from SNP MSPs to bring about an early Holyrood election if the government at Westminster frustrates MPs from carrying out their mandate even after scheduled follow-up actions.

2. Bolster your leadership of the party by earnestly soliciting the presentation of views from across the membership of the SNP at the October conference, by promptly implementing all necessary “best practice” internal party reforms and by building a broadly stronger Scottish Government team, perhaps with Kate Forbes re-invited to take a significant ministerial role.

3. Unite the “Yes movement” in backing the SNP through MSPs and MPs positively engaging with all independence-supporting parties and openly and respectfully sharing platforms with their representatives at public gatherings, marches and debates.

4. Encourage Labour supporters of the past to back the democratic expression of the people of Scotland through self-determination by voting SNP in the next General Election, thus progressing Scotland towards a more socially-just future while thwarting the reincarnation of Tony Blair.

5. Undertake necessary actions that will challenge the UK Government to demonstrate that Scotland is not effectively an “English colony” through devolving broadcasting to the Scottish Government, and in the meantime take every opportunity to challenge the media with a view to impartially achieving professional political balance in taxpayer-funded programming and at least some objective context in political reporting across mainstream media serious in eliminating “fake news”.

Stan Grodynski
Longniddry, East Lothian