Letters: They can change the name . . but they’ll still be Tories

Have your say

Deputy leader Murdo Fraser’s proposal to abolish the name of the Scottish Conservative party and replace its policies in an attempt to appeal to a centre-right movement surely must have brought on palpitations to the twin set-wearing, blue-rinse Mrs Hyacinth Bucket brigade of Glasgow’s Kelvinside and Edinburgh’s Morningside.

I can’t see these proud Tories ever contemplating doing away with the title Conservative without a fight; it would dilute their image and status from their mainstream English compatriots.

Tony Blair did this in the late 90s with New Labour, in an attempt to move away from Socialism and appeal more to the Liberal voter or perhaps the left-wing Tory (if there is such a category).

Yes, by doing this he had a landslide victory in 1997, but as his influence over change gathered momentum, he moved the old Labour Party so far right it became difficult to distinguish it from political parties on the right, thus losing the support of the traditional socialist that had started many decades before, with a strong trade union movement, which had had strong representation in parliament in that time.

Margaret Thatcher also made it easy for Tony Blair and paved a path for him in the 80s by neutering the trade unions, making it easier to make radical changes to his party.

We all know what happened to him and why Labour is in such a mess today – they lost touch with the grassroot supporter.

Like Thatcher in a way, Tony Blair paved the way for the posh university academics to take over the party; now we have Ed Miliband and his ilk, who never utter the words New Labour but are still undecided on how to identify the party or the direction it should be taking.

While New Labour was successful in getting power and holding on to it in excess of 13 years, I cannot see the Scottish Conservatives emulating this.

No matter what they would eventually call themselves, the Conservative have been thought of as pariahs for many years now.

Substituting the name will not erase this image and neither will a minor dilution of policy.

Frank Ferri, Newhaven Main Street

Trams project will finally flourish

At last common sense has prevailed over the future of the Edinburgh tram project.

It takes courage and foresight to bring about iconic projects that will be a great benefit to future generations and the communities in Edinburgh and beyond. Far from “short-changing” the citizens of Edinburgh, the trams will be a dedicated foundation for Edinburgh’s integrated public transport system for generations to come.

But let’s take things step by step, planning with care and attention to the costs and careful detailing for the tram network, which will eventually go far beyond St Andrew Square.

Chas Dennis, Niddrie Marischal Road, Edinburgh

City people have been ignored

Edinburgh city councillors have ridden roughshod over the people of Edinburgh with regards to their determination that the trams will be, no matter at what cost.

Democratically elected bodies are expected to do things for the people by the will of the majority of their constituents, which they have failed to do.

I am extremely disappointed that the SNP voted with the Lib Dems on this issue.

Rhoda Glanville, Rathbone Place, Portobello

Council shouldn’t have eyes on prize

Does Edinburgh City Council chief executive Sue Bruce think that Edinburgh should have been on the shortlist for Council of the Year?

What about the staff who are on suspension? Does this come into the equation?

Have the other councils got warts as big as this?

And when will we, the council tax payers, be made aware of the state of play regarding these council workers? How long is it going to take to sweep it under the carpet?

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