Why is Jeremy Corbyn backing a hard Brexit? – Kieran, Edinburgh

JEREMY Corbyn adopting a Tory-like, hard-line approach to leaving the European Union is truly mindboggling, and it has serious ramifications for not only his own electability but Scottish independence as well.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon recently shelved plans for indyref2 in order to pursue a soft Brexit. She likely thought this project could be worked on jointly with Labour, given their Scottish branch office’s alleged commitment to the single market. Indeed, a united left-wing, led by Corbyn and Sturgeon, strongly opposing the Conservatives' hard Brexit plans, seemed like the logical fallout from the General Election. However, for whatever reason, Jeremy Corbyn has nuked this option, meaning he is now allied with the Nasty Party on the most prevalent political issue of our time.

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Corbyn, in one move, has arguably nullified his own anti-Tory momentum and swiftly put indyref2 back on the agenda. Scotland voted Remain, we do not wish to leave the EU, and if we absolutely have to, we do not want the hard Brexit version.

Thus, having the two main Westminster parties unified on a hard Brexit simply underscores the need for a second Scottish independence referendum. Big Jez has ostensibly gone from being the saviour of Britain to guaranteeing its implosion with a single policy decision.

Worse yet, Corbyn has opted to punish members of his own party for arguing against his hard Brexit strategy. This seems like a step too far for a man who has frequently been at odds with Labour leadership throughout his career. Frankly, to make questioning a hard Brexit a sackable offence is like outlawing intelligence. It must surely raise a number of unpleasant questions for Corbyn’s diehard supporters. For example, if Jeremy is willing to shutdown democracy within his party, why pick this issue? Why not take this approach to those in favour of renewing Britain’s nuclear weapons programme as well?

Overall, it seems Corbyn has forgotten that he is leader of the opposition. In this role, Jez should be reflecting Labour’s original pro-Remain stance, or, at the very least, pushing for a soft Brexit. He should be aspiring to be the opposite of Theresa’s terrible government, not backing them on the main issue of the day. In Corbyn’s mind, the electorate were wrong to elect the Tories in the first place, so it should be possible for him to admit that voters were wrong to back Brexit too. After all, many who voted to leave the EU now wish they’d voted to stay! Jeremy might think that shacking up with Brexiters makes him more electable, but I believe that the exact opposite is true. I suspect only a tiny minority of Brexiters are Corbyn fans, while a significant chunk of Remainers make up his support in England.

Jez’s hard Brexit agenda risks turning his own followers against him, and this would be a tragic end for someone who offered a beacon of hope for UK politics. As ever, Labour are their own worst enemy, and this latest calamity simply strengthens the argument for indyref2. Being stuck in the UK means that you are now guaranteed the hard Brexit scenario. The only way to escape it is with Scottish independence!

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Colonel Davidson deserves all the flak she gets

What do you make of Ruth Davidson being made an honorary colonel? – Brian, Glasgow

I HAVE noticed an increasing trend in very dishonourable people being given honorary positions in society.

We have witnessed the Tories slashing the budgets of the armed forces and education, and yet Ruth Davidson has been made an honorary colonel and George Osborne is now an honorary professor of economics. To quote Worf from Star Trek: “They are without honour!”

Bluntly, making George Osborne an economics professor is like giving New Jersey Governor Chris Christie a doctorate in physical fitness. Meanwhile, promoting Ruth Davidson to the rank of colonel is akin to making an iceberg the captain of the Titanic. I certainly don’t imagine many reservists or full-time soldiers will enjoy the prospect of having to salute an active member of the Conservative Party when its main contribution to the armed forces has been reducing financial support and increasing involvement in dubious overseas conflicts.

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Furthermore, I cannot think of a worse way to encourage young people to join the military than making a Tory politician a colonel.

A politician would have been bad enough, but a Tory politician? The last thing the armed forces need is to be directly associated with Brexit, the rape clause and a repulsive partnership with the DUP. Ruth might claim that the army reserve gave her the tools to make it in politics, but given the governmental ranks she’s chosen to march with, I imagine many military officers are wishing she’d remained within their chain of command. Colonel Davidson the army signaller is a far less chilling image than Colonel Davidson the careerist politician.