WHEN Julia Pannell suggests a huge percentage of the unemployed Greek population without benefits and the large number of young people disproportionately affected by unemployment disagreeing that the strength of the euro and the European Central Bank is saving the day, isn’t she laying the blame at the wrong door (Letters, July 29)?

Surely the blame for Greece’s parlous economic state belongs entirely to its government’s woeful policies and appalling administration of the economy.

Where people refuse to pay legitimate taxes, then isn’t it the job of government to ensure proper collection, and to punish the culprits as a deterrence to evasion? There is no such thing as a free lunch in any economy.

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Attaching blame wrongly to the currency simply obscures the value of its role. But then, hasn’t the establishment sections of the British media deliberately propagandised against the euro, in order to retain the British pound our vested financial interests cream so much profit from?
Jim Taylor
Edinburgh
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Differences must be put aside as Brexit looms

KEZIA Dugdale take note: grown-ups held mature, fruitful and mutually beneficial talks regarding Brexit and how, as adults, Mike Russell and Mark Drakeford – along with their respective leading legal counsels – can put aside their political differences and come together to fight a common cause (Scottish and Welsh ministers meet to show united front in face of post-Brexit power grab, The National, July 28).

The common cause is of course the ruinous path that the Westminster government is currently pursuing and the suspected power grab they are plotting. What Kez will be painfully aware of is that Mark Drakeford is of course a Welsh Labour finance minister, and the sight of him meeting Mike Russell, the Scottish Government’s Brexit minister, must have sent her in to a near meltdown, as in Kezworld, no one communicates with, let alone has serious political discussions with anyone with the letters SNP appended to their name!

Also, it must be galling for her to have to admit that while Holyrood is in recess, the Scottish Government is really “getting on with their day job” and then some, leading the way with their Welsh counterparts in devising a strategy to try and mitigate the worst aspects of the Repeal Bill that the Maybot and her cabal (with the complicity of Corbyn) is going to try and hustle through the Commons with as little scrutiny and debate as she can get away with.

It will be interesting to note her reaction to these events when she is revived with some smelling salts, and whether she can bring herself to congratulate and support the Scottish Government in this regard. Will the Colonel be able to do likewise, because anything less than 100 per cent support would be a dereliction of duty and it would prove once and for all that the two of them are totally fixated with their hatred of the SNP and the fine work they as the Scottish Government, are doing.

The other aspect of these developments that is quite revealing is that it took a junior Brexit minister, one Robin Walker, to make a response for the Westminster government, where he lectured the parties involved to engage in “grown-up conversation” on these issues. That is rich coming from the Tories, who have demonstrated a total disregard thus far to all the detailed and sensibly thought-out options and ideas presented to them by the Scottish Government, preferring to respond with “No!” at every opportunity. It will be very interesting to see just what their definition of “grown-up conversation” entails, as to date it has been less than satisfactory to say the least. I for one expect the Welsh and the Scots to present meaningful proposals only to be demeaned and patronised by the Brexiteers who wouldn’t recognise common sense if it fell on their heads. Watch this space!
Ade Hegney
Helensburgh

I HAVE now read the article “The National is a positive force in the indy debate” by Callum Baird (The National, July 29) at least three times!

I am sad and puzzled at the actions of Ross Greer, a Green MSP, and struggled to find a kind way to debunk his words without debunking the individual, but have been unable to equivocate.

His statement that “The National is doing more harm than good to the Yes movement” is both arrogant and wrong. I have been a member of the SNP for over 50 years, and was editor of the Scots Independent newspaper from November 2005 to January 2016. I was ecstatic when the National was published – at last a daily newspaper supporting Scottish independence, able to give unslanted news to counter the Unionist bilge we have been fed. (As for your wet day in Aberdeen, I can relate to that over the years!) The Greens have always been somewhat equivocal on independence; not so long ago I was walking through the Garden Lobby at the Holyrood Parliament and bumped into one of our veteran MSPs, who greeted me with “Greens! Foodbanks are mushrooming – and they are wittering on about their concern for mountain hares!”

All of the Greens are not like Mr Greer; he is young enough to mature and put things into perspective.
Jim Lynch
Edinburgh

AS an English-born, Scottish-independence-supporting Green Party member I am obviously not keen on being told that I should be barred from having a vote on the matter. Having said that, The National was right to print the letter promoting this view point. The writer was not abusive and it enabled all who were interested to debate the issue.

Ross Greer seems to have taken against the one daily paper which is pro Scottish independence and which has given politicians from his/my party a chance to state their case, which no other paper does on a regular basis. For a paper with such limited resources, the journalism it produces is amazingly good.

The National is highlighting issues and holding politicians of all affiliations to account, and I fervently hope it can continue doing so.

Oh, and forgive my innocence, but what is a Zoomer?
Jon Southerington
Deerness, Orkney

TAKING pot shots at this newspaper is the only thing likely to do more harm than good.

I, for one, expect better of our MSPs. He should be offering constructive criticism to address what he views as areas for improvement for The National. That would be preferable, don’t you think?

I would suggest to Mr Greer that he takes up The National’s offer to properly express his opinion.
Adam Thomas