Readers' letters: Labour let us down on council alliances

The deals the Labour party have made with other parties in local government in Scotland reflect their behaviour more generally.

The Labour party has made a deal with the Tories and Liberal Democrats, in Edinburgh Council, despite Anas Sarwar saying he would not make deals and the lack of electoral support for the Tories.

Labour is giving the Tories senior positions in Edinburgh, also in Stirling, Fife and West Lothian Councils. In Edinburgh the Tories have influence over policy in Planning, Licensing and Airbnb.

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Labour has ignored the needs of Scotland and democracy before and voted with the Tories for a hard Brexit.

Ian Murray, the sole Labour MP in Scotland, voted with Mr Johnson’s party on Brexit. Labour has not opposed the Internal Market Act or protected the devolution settlement which they had a hand in creating.

Westminster can spend and legislate in devolved areas undermining Holyrood. Labour also does not want an independence referendum which the Scottish people desire.

Scotland can do far better with a constitution and democratic independent state, away from the failing and flailing Westminster government and opposition.

Pol Yates, Edinburgh.

Murray fails to grasp devolution workings

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Ian Murray doesn’t seem to understand how devolution works (News, 2 June).

Any Scottish government would face impossible budget choices when high UK inflation, caused by disastrous Westminster policies on Brexit, Covid and energy supply, means a much-reduced block grant in real terms.

The reliance on income tax as the only alternative source to plug the shortfall is undermined if the UK decides to reduce income tax rather than spend its way out of austerity.

The Scottish Government has to balance its books every year and cannot print money or run up a national debt of £2700 billion, or £43,000 per head as in the UK. The OBR has forecast Scotland’s North Sea will produce £12bn in taxes this year for the UK Treasury and that’s before the £5bn windfall.

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Scotland outperforms the rest of the UK and Europe in attracting foreign investment that created 10,000 jobs in the last year, highlighting Scotland’s strength in high-value, high-growth industries like digital, clean technology and life sciences as an attractive location with a highly educated workforce thanks to good business networks and Scottish Government agencies’ support.

Without the normal fiscal powers of independence to unleash Scotland’s vast potential, we will be held back and can’t maintain the best public services in the UK we have come to enjoy or mitigate the devastating UK government austerity that has caused lower life expectancy.

Mary Thomas, Edinburgh.

Steer clear of buying Corgis as pets

As Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee arrives, Corgi-themed merchandise is flying off the shelves and internet searches for the dogs are skyrocketing.

But PETA cautions the public not to get caught up in the fad by buying these pedigree dogs on impulse. Corgis are deliberately bred to have legs too short for their bodies, causing painful spine and hip ailments, and they are prone to other serious health problems.

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Animals bought on a whim often end up abandoned once the novelty wears off and the vet bills add up. Anyone looking to expand their family – and who has the time, love, and resources to offer a dog a home for life – should visit their local shelter.

Elisa Allen, PETA UK, London N1

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