Readers' letters: The UK is becoming a failed state

Liz Truss’s demise has clearly illustrated the weakness of the UK outside the EU and confirmed Brexit as mission impossible.

‘Global Britain’ was unable to set its own fiscal policy simply because the international money markets have zero confidence in its economy.

At a stroke, the Truss / Kwarteng right-wing ideological experiment spooked the international community, destroyed the UK’s longstanding reputation for reliability and invited the ridicule and pity of other developed nations.

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After six years of Brexit self-obsession, British ‘soft power’ is gone. When was the last time we saw international statesmen / women visiting Downing Street? These days key world leaders meet elsewhere.

The UK is fast becoming a failed state, unable to even look after its own vulnerable citizens properly. With the highest inflation and interest rates and lowest economic performance of our neighbours, its citizens are struggling and distressed. UK pensions are the lowest in Western Europe and its GDP a lowly $46,483 per capita. Truss’s successor will not change any of this.

Given our size, skilled population and abundant natural resources, Scotland’s per capita GDP should be at least equivalent to that of our quietly prosperous medium-sized neighbouring countries, like Denmark ($60,230) or Ireland ($93,350).

Instead, we are trapped inside an isolated and declining GB economy, charged a payment towards England’s capital infrastructure programmes and unable to use Scotland’s considerable renewable energy resources for the benefit of our own citizens.

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No country would choose to link its economy or currency to the UK’s. The only route to a successful and prosperous Scotland, that is able to realise the benefits of its own considerable wealth is independence and membership of the EU single market.

Mr D Jamieson, Dunbar.

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Whistleblowers need our support

Having read the recent articles in the Evening News by Bill Cook (17 October) and John McLellan (20 October) regarding the call for a national whistleblowing officer and the safeguarding of children in the city of Edinburgh, I have signed the petition to the Scottish Parliament.

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I have for nearly 20 years followed the twists and turns of the Travers family's ordeals following Mr Travers' disclosures of malpractice by officers in the council to the then Convenor of the Council, Donald Anderson ( who recognised something was very wrong in the Council's handling of the disclosures).

Improper practice was 'covered up' while the council embarked upon a strategy of victimising and persecution of the whistleblower with the aim of ruining his family financially by abusing the public purse with irresponsible actions of legalised cover ups.

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It does appear a broad church of individual politicians (SNP, Labour and Conservative) have tried hard to resolve the issues within the structure of the council but as the Tanner Report acknowledged, 'an old boys (and girls) network' had blocked their actions to bring out truth and justice and probably still does.

Now we clearly see the Travers case was not an isolated one, as scandal after scandal has been exposed and plunged the council into disrepute - Castlebrae, Sean Bell and the failures of safeguarding of children in care or education means the whistleblowing policies of the council are not worth the pen drives they are stored on, and the Scottish Parliament needs to investigate and support the calls for a National Whistleblowing Officer.

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Keith Smith, Edinburgh.

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