PEOPLE thinking of voting Labour or for alternative parties to the SNP at the General Election risk a future where Scotland’s voice is no longer heard at Westminster.

You can already see with the Speaker debacle that they think we are a fly to be swatted from their presence because we challenge the orthodoxy of English supremacy, their way or no way.

The fact is we have a voice and that is hugely problematic for them, so much so that they seek every possible method to silence Scotland.

Instead of supporting their electorate, Labour wannabes take every opportunity to actively run Scotland down, challenging Scottish Government decisions at Westminster at every possible opportunity in debates about England and the rest of the nations. What Labour want is for Scotland to replicate England.

I share this link to “Delivering progress: 100 top achievements of the SNP in government” for those interested in the specifics of what you will be losing by failing to support the SNP –

Can you imagine watching PMQ’s at Westminster, where the Government goes unchallenged by your representatives, as currently happens with the SNP MPs, and only hearing questions relating to the whole UK, with Scotland rarely being mentioned the norm?

That will be the result of voting for Labour. Don’t expect any challenge to UK-specific – and by that I mean England and Wales – decisions to be of interest to the Labour government. It will decide, as is currently the situation with the Tory government, on what is best for England and no-one will speak up for Scotland’s interests. The SNP being the third-largest party at Westminster gives them a much larger voice and privileges as a result, and failing to support them means ultimately your voice will be greatly diluted and your vote become worthless.

If you believe Labour will support you and that you will be transported to a utopia which has the interests of Scotland at heart, think again. The recent addition to Westminster from Scotland has had a swift conversion to mainstream Unionist tropes where Scotland exists only to feed wealth to the rUK and should be seen and not heard.

Christine Smith


SADLY, the last few weeks in politics have highlighted the growth of a consistent trend of verbal abuse, aggression, and use of accusatory language in both the UK and Scottish parliaments.

Westminster has always been a dreadful panto with the braying donkeys displaying schoolboy/girl raucous, juvenile antics. This fiasco has always been an awful reflection of the calibre of MPs we are saddled with. In Westminster it’s all about the toffs, their inherited wealth and titles, their private schools – all far removed from the lives that their constituents lead.

I had hoped Scotland would do it differently and a lot better. That’s not working out! The vicious vitriol of Messrs Ross and Sarwar, not forgetting the Dame, is just as bad as the Westminster panto. Braying and nodding donkeys, rolling their eyes and banging on desks are all now part and parcel of FMQs.

When our Parliament was restored I had such hope that we would see all parties co-operate and collaborate on bringing forward decent policies for all, using the knowledge and expertise of our MSPs to develop and drive forward quality decisions that would improve the lives of folks in Scotland. Forget party politics and focus on consensus politics that brings us together. This is not to be at the moment, as a toxic vibe engulfs the chamber.

The media fuel this division and exploit the point-scoring mantra that has invaded our country.

The panto and the fiasco that are the two parliaments worryingly will not encourage our future generations to consider politics as a career. Treating people the way you would want to be treated would be a decent start.

Jan Ferrie

South Ayrshire

I HAVE been back in Scotland for more than three years now and I just have to say this. Some aspects of living here have changed but what hasn’t changed is my conviction that Scotland has the resources and abilities to govern itself without being overlorded by Westminster.

Over many decades, even centuries, Scots have emigrated around the world as inventors and politicians. American presidents and Canadian prime ministers have been Scots. Scottish engineering feats that still stand today in other countries are world-renowned. Why then would anyone believe that they could not run their own country?

Why anyone in Scotland would vote for a Unionist party today is beyond my understanding. I can only think that too many of those who have never lived anywhere outside of Scotland still suffer from the cultural cringe that has come from centuries of English rule leading many to believe they are less capable than they are of running their own affairs.

I might not see independence in my lifetime but I will support it with my last breath and pray that those still sitting on the fence will think long and hard before handing the country back to Westminster at the next election.

Sheila Wilson Le Mottee

via email

LISTENING to Labour MP Michael Shanks on Thursday morning I nearly fell off my breakfast bar stool sadly laughing at his naive comments. He provided an analogy on the Budget by using pennies, rather than big money terms. It went like this ...

The UK Government is taking 10p from us then giving us back 5p, so it’s hardly something we Scots should be happy about. However, when asked what Labour would do to rectify this situation, he said that a UK Labour government would get the economy moving, so that the increased activity would generate additional tax incomes, but crucially he didn’t say how.

This seems to follow the mantra from the senior Labour team, don’t tell or promise anything until we get into power.

So the Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP is telling us Scots that the UK Government is extracting cash from us and giving us dross back. Tells us something we don’t know!

Alistair Ballantyne


SO while Scotland’s oil, gas, renewable energy and exports prop up the UK economy it has been revealed that Scotland’s share of UK Government spending, via the so-called “block grant”, has fallen to only 3.5% for 2023/24, the lowest level since devolution. At less than half of our population-share the claims that Scotland is effectively “subsidized” by our more populous neighbour ring extremely hollow in spite of boasts made around partial GERS figures and higher spending-per-head than other parts of the UK.

Of course, many who support self-determination saw beyond the smoke and mirrors long ago. Increasingly those who didn’t vote for independence in 2014 are coming to the realisation that in effect Scotland is a “colony” fuelling the spiral of wealth in England. This tragic predicament of the ‘non-constitutional status quo’ has been exacerbated by Brexit which is why the self-proclaimed “mother of parliaments” (with support for independence consistently around 50% even without a second referendum campaign), now denies the people of Scotland their democratic right.

Stan Grodynski

Longniddry, East Lothian

POST UK election, we will be under either the current Tories surviving in power by skin of their teeth, which I have to admit is currently a remote possibility, or an incoming Labour Government who have publicly stated they will not make any promises to voters before seeing ‘the books’.

Rachael Reeves the chess playing(and champion at 14) future chancellor, came through the recent political elite route through, Oxford with Philosophy, Politics and Economics then onto London School of Economics (LSE) for an MSc, on to Bank of England (BoE) and Halifax / Bank of Scotland (HBOS).

Should we, the Scottish public expect radical monetary policy changes, that supports the ‘Many not the Few’, just to remind Labour voters of their reason for being.

I doubt it, as Starmer and Reeves are wedded to saying not much other than apparently performing a Theresa May’s ‘Strong and Stable’ dance. I can predict that within the month of taking power the Starmer Party will go on TV and tell us all that there really is no money left, and we will have to keep our belt tightened for another few months or possibly years.

Many folks will not make it due to the effect of ‘Trunk Strangulation’, caused by extended austerity.

The Starmer Party had to be dragged into speak about the Gaza conflict, for fear of undoing all of the membership surgery he has undertaken since taken over his party by risking threats of being Anti-Semitic himself.

If the Starmer party is feart to condemn two significant events, the atrocious attack by Hamas on the Israeli music festival and the unjustifiable retribution of the IDF and Israeli Government, is it likely we as voters will get any detailed plan on the economy that we can judge their direction and competence.

Unlikely, they won’t want to scare the horses by saying five more years of austerity.

Alistair Ballantyne