Readers' letters: Turn out the lights to enhance wellbeing
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Out of solidarity with all those unable to afford electricity for their home surely Scotland should cease the wasteful illumination of the Forth bridges and consider a national policy of turning off street lights during certain night-time hours to allow the wonder of the night sky to be glimpsed by an increasingly disconnected humanity.
On the few clear skies in the last week the passing Green Comet has been invisible due to serious light pollution throughout the Forth Valley.
Just as the Forth Bridge has stood as symbol of Scottish engineering so ceasing to illuminate these Forth crossings would probably save little but would be a powerful symbol that we are not a wasteful nation and have a government in tune with ordinary people and their energy concerns. Reducing Scottish light pollution by a meaningful dark skies policy would enhance our wellbeing as a nation.
Stewart McKenna, Kirknewton, West Lothian
Conning the public
A BBC study on the impartiality of its journalists’ economics reporting found many to be economically illiterate and too willing to parrot what politicians tell them.
Economists at the Bank of England and Treasury either suffer from the same knowledge deficit or are conning the public. They claim that wages must be suppressed to control inflation, when wages have been falling. It’s asset prices – real estate, stock and bond prices – that have risen.
In other words, wealth, not goods and services, has been inflated. The money the Bank of England has created has not gone into productive investment but into the financial system where it is hoarded and used for speculation, driving up asset prices.
Two other causes economists don’t mention are monopoly pricing and NATO’s sanctions against Russia. Private energy companies raised prices at the outset of the Ukraine war before supplies were disrupted because, as monopolies, they could. We’ve seen the result – bloated profits while people freeze and starve.
But public sector workers are blamed for inflation. The Bank of England is engineering a recession by raising interest rates which will crush consumer spending and increase unemployment, destroying what’s left of the productive base of the economy.
Labour, the only thing most people have to sell, is devalued, but asset prices are kept high to safeguard the wealth of the richest, leading to obscene inequality. The UK Government is engaging in economic class warfare against its own people.
If Scotland is to have a chance at prosperity, it must escape from this rotten system.
Leah Gunn Barrett, Edinburgh
This desperate and wholly ineffective SNP administration continues to blight the daily lives of the Scottish people.
Not content with a list of costly failures as long as one’s arm such as the ferries fiasco, Prestwick Airport, BiFab, failed Supreme Court challenges and massive domestic policy failures, we are greeted with the news of further delays to the implementation of Social Security payments being made in Scotland.
Is there nothing the SNP touches that turns to dust whether it is policy or business? Surely the time for change has come?
Richard Allison, Edinburgh
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