LETTERS: Murray and Dugdale are wrong to insult Corbyn

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Ian Murray’s insulting remarks about Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn being a pensioner and, therefore, unsuitable to be a Labour leader, merely show that he has no principles whatsoever.

Many believe that Mr Murray only held on to his Edinburgh South seat after he and his acolytes relentlessly attacked his main political rival over three-year-old tweets that never even mentioned pensioners or the elderly.

I assume that Mr Murray will resign as shadow secretary of state for Scotland if Corbyn wins.

Meanwhile, Scottish Labour leadership candidate Kezia Dugdale, who also trashed Corbyn, proves she is completely out of touch with reality by proposing that the soon to be 1000 members of the House of Lords should sit in Glasgow rather than be abolished as an antiquated relic of the British establishment and privileged entitlement.

No doubt Ms Dugdale will also step down if Corbyn is selected by Labour Party members.

Mrs Janice Thompson, Walter Scott Avenue, Edinburgh

Lord Sewel deserves our understanding!

maybe some of us are being a bit harsh in judging Lord Sewel as an over-inflated national sponge, with his £30,000-a-year housing allowance, £85,000 for being a chairman of a committee, £300 every day he went into the Lords to enjoy subsidised food and beverage.

Add his state pension for being a former MP and former government minister, an exemption from congestion charges that hit many far less well-off Londoners, together with all sort of other financial benefits that get quietly paid. There must have been times when he was waiting for his winter fuel allowance to buy Christmas presents.

Give the guy a break, it can’t be easy riding along on the gravy train.

Colin Cookson, Stenton, Glenrothes

Better labelling will help partially sighted

I’m partially sighted and wish cordial makers would clearly state ‘Dilute to Taste’ on the front label in big letters so that I wouldn’t keep burning the back of my throat after accidentally drinking it concentrated.

It happened again today; I then got a magnifying glass and found in the almost-invisible smallprint on the back label ‘dilute to taste’.

I wonder how many mums are mistakenly burning their children’s throats because they don’t know it’s supposed to be diluted with water?

Spike Taylor, New St, Edinburgh

Well done Winchburgh railway engineers

Network Rail and their contractors should be congratulated on completing the lowering of the rock floor and installation of a fixed concrete track system at Winchburgh tunnel on the Edinburgh/Glasgow main line to programme and, most importantly, safely.

The work was essential to provide clearance for the installation of an overhead supply for the soon to come electric train services.

This was an extremely challenging job and experienced railway civil engineers will not need reminding that similar operations in modern times resulted in collapse at West Street and Penmanshiel tunnels; the latter sadly with the loss of two lives.

Duncan Sooman BSc CEng FICE, Dumbrock Road, Milngavie

Education takes a positive stance on EU

LAST week saw the launch of Universities for Europe, a coalition of the UK’s higher education institutions, campaigning for our continued membership of the European Union.

Including 16 Scottish universities, the higher education sector is to be applauded in standing up to be counted in backing the case for our continued membership of the European Union.

EU membership has an overwhelmingly positive impact on Scotland’s higher education institutions, benefiting individuals, the economy and society as a whole.

More than 19,200 students from the rest of the EU attend Scottish universities and these institutions have won over £400 million in EU funding between 2007-14 – almost 
1.3 per cent of the research funding programme for the whole of the EU.

This has boosted the quality of research, benefited the economy and helped Scottish academics to tap into a continent-wide pool of knowledge, cementing the strong global reputation of Scotland’s universities

The case for staying in the EU is about ensuring the future prosperity of Scotland, about maximising the chances of new discoveries that enhance the society in which we live, about increasing Scotland’s global profile, about Scottish jobs and about greater opportunities for people in Scotland now and in the future.

Derek Hammersley, The European Movement in Scotland, Cumberland Street SE Lane, Edinburgh

Alex misses his timing on new referendum

You have to hand it to Alex Salmond. He chose to threaten the Scottish people with another referendum on the day that the oil price collapsed to $53 a barrel – less than half what it was last year.

If anyone was ever in any doubt that the SNP support independence at any price, then this was the day to dispel that notion.

Michelle Smythe, Dalry Road, Edinburgh