Letters: Germans right to say auf wiedersehen to market

German Market at The Mound. Picture: Ian Georgeson
German Market at The Mound. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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Who can blame German stall holders for deciding not to attend this year’s Christmas market (News, October 15)?

Over the years the Christmas Festival has become increasingly commercial with the emphasis on fairground attractions.

Although this might be great for kids and families, not to mention the Capital’s coffers, if the commercial and tacky element to the festivities is allowed to take over, it might not be just stall holders who stay away but also visitors.

Tourism is vital to the economy of Edinburgh and in this highly competitive age everything that can be done should be done to ensure that Edinburgh remains an attractive city to visit.

Angus McGregor, Albion Road, Edinburgh

Callous disregard is almost beyond belief

Now we know that a quarter of the shares in the Post Office privatisation changed hands within one day as buyers took their profit and ran.

It means, in effect, that anyone wealthy enough to buy £750 worth of shares has been given an immediate gift of another £350 by HM Government.

If the shares had been correctly priced, that money could have been used to ease the plight of our poor, old, unemployed or sick – but no, the politicians would prefer to give even more to those who have, rather than support those who haven’t.

Their callous disregard for any group except their paymasters is almost beyond belief. Anyone who votes for the Westminster mafia ever again needs their head examining.

David Fiddimore, Nether Craigwell, Calton Road, Edinburgh

Bring on debate with Cameron

Many would dispute Mike Sander’s assertion (Letters October 16) that David Cameron should not debate with Alex Salmond on the referendum as he doesn’t have a vote.

Alistair Darling is merely an opposition back bencher and chairman of the “No” campaign whose counterpart is former Labour MP Dennis Canavan, chairman of the “Yes” campaign.

As the majority of the “No” side funding has come from Tories living south of the Border and David Cameron’s UK government has spent thousands of pounds on producing papers attacking Scottish independence, it is right and proper that the contest between Scotland and Westminster should be debated between the UK Prime Minister and the First Minister of Scotland. As the BBC is now obsessed with personalities and ratings, it should be taking the lead and asking Cameron and Salmond to have the main TV debate.

Mary Thomas, Watson Crescent,

Edinburgh

Labour is no longer the people’s party

I HOPE the people of Dunfermline elect the SNP candidate. The Scottish Government has put the Scottish people first with the freeze in council tax, free education, free prescriptions, free bus passes and the aboltion of rates for small businesses.

Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont, pictured, has said no more freebies for Scotland – under Labour the council tax freeze would go, and there would be no free bus passes or prescriptions. We can’t let this happen.

Under the SNP, we have more police on the beat, and crime and unemployment are down.

And now the Scottish Government is making 
£20 million available to help people affected by the bedroom tax. Labour is no longer the people’s party.

J Hill, Stenhouse Avenue, Edinburgh

Leader uses his Ed to come up with ideas

THE leader of the Labour party, Ed Miliband, has come up with a brilliant idea to freeze fuel prices when the party returns to government. This has no doubt ruffled a few feathers among the Tories and the energy industry.

But the question is, why does the price of fuel rise every year without let-up? Why not cut back on tariffs and VAT – this would save the customer about £100 a year on their bills and would certainly help many low income families, especially elderly and disabled people.

Fuel poverty is becoming a very real danger for many families.

Ed Miliband and the Labour Party should be given praise for what is a humanitarian effort to help the needy.

Chas Dennis, Niddrie Marischal Road, Edinburgh

It’s time for the PM to show his mettle

The House of Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee discussed the report Energy Prices, Profits and Poverty, which warned of large increases in electricity bills as a consequence of climate change policies.

Green taxes currently account for around 11 per cent (£59) of average annual electricity bills and six per cent (£49) of gas bills, a total of £108.

This is bad enough but the report continues that “green” policies will add 33 per cent to electricity bills by 2020 and 41 per cent by 2030.

Ed Davey, the Energy Secretary, is devious when he says politicians can do nothing about energy bills rising.

It’s the green subsidies, stupid!

David Cameron has ordered a review into whether green taxes could be watered down, delayed or scrapped but the Lib Dems have vowed to block any attempt to reduce green taxes.

Time for Cameron to show his mettle and tell them to toe the line or he will call a snap election and consign the Libs to the political wilderness.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow