JUST watched the official launch of the SNP-inspired Labour manifesto in Bradford. Personally I agreed with many of Jeremy’s points. I thought Jeremy Corbyn came over very well. With the no SNP presence in England I do hope they begin to be more effective against Tory dominance south of the Border. However, what caught my eye was Kezia’s performance. She was sitting quite prominently on stage right, the seat no doubt reserved for the person in charge of the sub-office, quietly clapping when appropriate. At the end of the manifesto launch she appeared to be invited on the stage for a photo opportunity with Jeremy by Sarah Champion, the shadow secretary for women and inequalities. Jeremy also turned around and ushered her to join him. Now on the main stage an uncomfortable looking Kezia instead made a quick stage left exit! Now what will be interesting is if the media comment on this or if it’s quietly swept under the carpet.

The ongoing difficulties between Kezia and her leader don’t appear to be abating, that’s for sure!

Robin Maclean
Fort Augustus


HOW can Labour be trusted?

Having gone on record to say that Scots had a right to hold another referendum on independence, Jeremy Corbyn has now U-turned in Labour’s manifesto to claim the vote is “unwarranted and unnecessary”; clearly he has experienced a spectacular “Damascene” moment.

It seems that while Corbyn disagrees with the EU and would Brexit to leave it — although he allegedly “campaigned” to Remain — he refuses to apply the same standard for Scots who wish to leave the UK Union. How can anyone with such double standards be trusted?

Doesn’t it seem that Corbyn has fallen under the spell of the increasingly irrelevant Kezia Dugdale, whose anti-referendum obsession is clearly driven by the loss of Labour voters to the Tories and others. Perhaps her real problem is why Labour voters should vote for her version of the Tory anti-independence diatribe when they can vote for the real Tory deal itself.

Isn’t it the utmost hypocrisy for Corbyn to support self-determination for Hamas, yet deny the very same to we Scots?

Doesn’t this demonstrate that election manifestos have more to do with placating as many groups of the electorate in order to harvest their votes, at the expense of fundamental principles, of which the right to self-determination has to be prime?

I just wonder whether Jeremy Corbyn, and Labour generally, would welcome anyone dictating to them how to manage their own family affairs. Why should we Scots not have the same autonomy to determine for ourselves how we want our affairs to be managed?

Jim Taylor


I HAVE just read the actual Labour manifesto (Labour beef up their manifesto promise to oppose ScotRef, The National, May 16). Although they will campaign tirelessly to ensure Scotland remains part of the UK, their other commitments are a bit vague.

A Labour government will “seek to” put powers returned from the EU as close to communities as possible — as opposed to the Tories who will “look to”.

Scotland will receive a huge funding increase from Labour policies — the cost of which will no doubt will be added to the GERS deficit. Massive numbers of Scots will benefit from Labour plans in areas reserved to Westminster — so Westminster still knows best.

Establishing a Scottish Investment Bank, with £20 billion of funds available to local projects and Scotland’s small businesses, creating work and stimulating the economy — investing in Scotland but not trusting the Scottish Government to do it.

They will set up an inquiry into blacklisting and urge the Scottish Government to set up one on police conduct during the miners’ strike — still on the books although Labour were in power for 13 years.

John Jamieson South Queensferry IT will be interesting to see if any parties in the current General Election discourse are prepared to say what I suspect they believe, that the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is a national security threat.

Bill Ramsay
Convener, SNP CND