I ONLY wish Linda Horsburgh’s plan for countering a hostile Unionist media could work, but I can’t hold out much hope (Letters, January 9).

Yes, control of our broadcasting service would help in delivering a balanced view of Scottish politics, but we’d still be bombarded with BBC bias and misinformation from London. The airwaves don’t stop at borders and we couldn’t force “British” Scots to watch home-produced news and programmes.

Yes, it would be agreeable to have more pro-independence newspapers, choice is always desirable, but how many No voters read The National? People buy print media out of habit, and because the editorial content panders to their own prejudices.

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Ignoring the mainstream media, therefore, seems reasonable advice on the part of Angus Robertson.

Our salvation, I believe, will be social media: it was a valuable tool during the referendum campaign and, with planning, can be used to even greater effect in Indy2.

So, ignore the Unionist media, yes, but never let repeated propaganda go unchallenged.

“Is that true, or did you hear it on the BBC?” is usually sufficient.
Pauline Taylor
Elgin

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EU opposition is based on valid critique, not class

THANK goodness I’m not the only independence supporter to see the danger of linking a second independence referendum to continued membership of the EU. Even though I have wanted Scottish independence since my childhood, I would have to consider, very carefully, whether I wanted it enough to vote in favour of remaining in the EU.

Why? Not because I am xenophobic but because the EU is a run by a cabal of bankers and multinational companies in their own self-interest.

Also, despite George Kerevan’s assertion that “the SNP Government is in a prime position to help mobilise pan-EU support among progressive forces to oppose such austerity”, I have seen no evidence of this (Time to inspire, not play it safe: what kind of society could we create?, The National, January 9). Sadly, Nicola Sturgeon, although politely received by leaders of the EU, has not been successful in persuading them to allow Scotland to remain in the EU after the UK leaves it. Nor have I seen any sign that the big hitters in the EU, like Germany and France, can be influenced by the voices of small countries.

Mr Kerevan continues by stating: “And we will defend our society from the ravages of consumerism, populism, racism, and the neo-liberal imperative to turn everything valuable in our culture into a market proposition”, ignoring the fact it is these very ideas which are inherent in the EU and from which I, and many of those who voted Leave, hate and want to get rid of.

And Mr Kerevan repeats his offensive claim that “indyref2 could lose working-class voters to Brexit as fast as it gains middle-class Edinburgh pro-Remainers”. What makes him think that the class of those who voted for Brexit is significant? There’s more than a whiff of condescension in his thinking, and I think he should be ashamed of himself for writing it. Perhaps these “working-class voters” are the ones he regards as populists, ie those who believe in democracy. If so, I am proud to be included in their number.

To answer his question: “What kind of society could we create?” Well, a true democracy would be my ideal: a society which listens and responds to the wishes and needs of the people of the country. Not one run by bankers, multinational companies and dictatorial and patronising MPs.
Lovina Roe
Perth

IAN O Bayne (Letters, January 9) makes a valid point on the issue of securing the support not just of Remain voters but also those who voted Leave when it comes to indyref2.

Until we have the full powers of a normal nation and are able to make our own decisions, not just on the EU but also on the monarchy, Nato and a whole host of other issues, then Scotland will simply be a bystander in the continuing political (and economic) mess the UK finds itself in.

To win the next indyref we need as much support as possible, and that includes those who want to stay in the EU as well as those who want to leave. Using the political fallout of the UK Government’s inability to deal with Brexit provides an opportunity to highlight how we could do things differently in Scotland, if only we had the powers to do so.

The focus should be on how we can achieve victory in indyref2 rather than getting too absorbed in any particular issue – such as the EU – when we currently have a diminished voice within the UK.
Councillor Kenny MacLaren
Paisley

GREATER Self-Determination (GSD1) would perhaps have been a more appropriate title than indyref1. It could be argued that earlier massive SNP electoral successes were effectively unofficial referenda.

The campaign was dominated not by what all could not agree on – ie keep the pound, keep the monarchy, keep the single energy market, keep the Bank of England, remain in the EU, remain in Nato, etc – but a party-based fight, mainly the Bad SNP versus the Tories’ “coalition of the willing”

These GSD1 arguments were not only about whether Scotland should have the right to make a choice, but also whether it could still function having made a choice. Potentially, the key stumbling blocks were in approaches to nuclear defence, and/or whether to target the poor via austerity protocols. In respect of the first, the anti-SNP coalition parties wanted to either update the nuclear deterrent or kick any decision beyond the next generation. In respect of targeting the poor, they were either in favour, or unwilling, to commit to the poor by reversing austerity.

The biggest key difference, ie the potential for nuclear Armageddon, is a much bigger and a quite different decision to be made than for either greater self-determination or protecting the poor from the Tories, and in my opinion requires a commitment (stronger than a Vow) to a further separate referendum should Yes be successful. Run-of-the-mill powers to increase renewables, protect human rights, protect our environment and food security into the future etc are all essentials within the greater self-determination debates in the immediate future, though the agreed basics of currency need to be addressed again in due course as/when national divergence demands.

Greater self-determination without extreme violence should not be regarded as anything other than exceptional, and will require the continuous and repeated approval of the people of Scotland. GSD2 should not be regarded as the final hurdle, but merely the next step in the process.
Stephen Tingle
Greater Glasgow