THERE are times when I despair of our SNP MSPs’ behaviour at Holyrood. If there is a motion put to the Scottish Parliament that all our elected members should back, it is one which reminds us all of the damage Margaret Thatcher brought to Scotland with her draconian social and economic policies.

READ MORE: Eight SNP MSPs back Alba motion condemning Keir Starmer’s praise of Margaret Thatcher

I am very disappointed that only eight SNP MSPs have supported the Alba motion lodged in the Scottish Parliament condemning Keir Starmer’s praise of Margaret Thatcher. Well done and thank you to the eight MSPs involved, but what are the rest of you thinking about?

It worries me greatly that if the independence-supporting parties at Holyrood cannot agree on support for this motion, where does that leave us in our bigger fight to win independence?

David Coll
Isle of Bute

IN his recent speech, English Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer referenced Clement Atlee’s call to “build a new Jerusalem”, implying that’s what New Labour will do for the failing UK. Nothing could be further from the truth. After heaping praise on Thatcher’s reign of destruction, we can expect a Starmer government to slash public spending and privatise what remains of the post-war welfare state created by Atlee’s Labour government.

Starmer is no Atlee. He doesn’t comprehend that a government must increase public spending to generate growth, particularly during an economic slump. His invented “iron-clad fiscal rules” mean more austerity that will drag the UK further down into its fiscal hole.

READ MORE: Holyrood officials refuse to say if Alex Cole-Hamilton could face probe over pub row

After the war, Atlee’s government achieved the seemingly impossible – full employment and an economic boom. It created the NHS, nationalised energy and the railroads and invested in improving them, expanded education, built new social housing and paid back its war-time debts. GDP rose, inflation was low and people prospered.

This programme of public investment was so successful that other countries copied it. The US-led Marshall Plan which rebuilt Europe followed it. So did the Nordic countries, and they maintained it, which explains their economic prosperity today.

Starmer’s Labour Party has morphed into a neoliberal monolith that worships private profit maximisation at the expense of public investment in infrastructure, industry and people. That’s why the UK is failing so spectacularly and why Scotland needs to make a quick exit if it is to survive.

Leah Gunn Barrett

AMAZINGLY, I find myself in agreement with Starmer! Margaret Thatcher did indeed change the UK. She destroyed all our industry and turned the UK economy into one almost entirely dedicated to making money from money, especially for the already rich, and the devil take the hindmost.

L McGregor

I WAS glad to see Neil Findlay lose the Scottish Labour leadership contest to Jim Murphy in December 2014, as I knew it would lead to a decline in support for Unionism. In the last leadership contest, Monica Lennon was also unsuccessful.

READ MORE: Scottish Labour silent as Keir Starmer praises Margaret Thatcher

The reaction of Lennon and Findlay to Lord Starmer’s latest insulting epistle shows that they are the people who should consider setting up an Independent Scottish Labour Party.

Otherwise the “branch office” will become a continuous panto with Prince Anas and Dame Jackie treading the boards!

Sandy Coghill
Isle of Skye

I GREW up in the PRP (People’s Republic of Partick), where we were represented and cared for by a political party that was interested in the welfare, health, education, and more, of the electorate who placed in them our confidence that they would not only continue to so do but always raise their game. Sadly that party no longer exists in that format.

It was called the Labour Party.

M Ross

I REMAIN fascinated by writers looking for a “legitimate way” out of the Treaty of Union through varied appeals to the UN, EU to force Westminster into “allowing” a referendum on Scottish independence.

We have tried the “legitimate way” and been told by the UK legal authorities it is up to the UK Parliament whether there is a second referendum.

READ MORE: SNP launch WhatsApp channel for 'news, research and rebuttal'

The UK Union (aka England) simply can not afford to let Scotland go, especially as the next, more punitive phase of Brexit unfolds. A quick look at the fiscal position of the UK makes it obvious the UK Union needs Scotland for all sorts of reasons be they financial, exports or for energy security.

The chances of any change to the current anti-democratic stance of the UK Union leadership, in refusing the people of Scotland’s democratic wish for a referendum, amount to zero.

To achieve a referendum we need to change the game plan, as playing by the “rules” is not going to work.

It is going to take a Gandhi-style of approach of peaceful, mass civil disobedience but I do not think enough Scots or Scots politicians have the stomach to risk jail to make it happen.

Peter Thomson
via email

IT is hardly surprising that Alister Union Jack has been awarded a Best Scot Award by Westminster, or what else is the Anti-Scottish Office in Dover House, London, England for? Dover Hoose and its Saint Andrew’s outhouse convenience in Edinburgh are as much use as tribal rain dancers in Scotland.

Donald Anderson