I WELCOME the lead given by the Scottish Independence Convention and agree that what seems key to winning any referendum is for the gap between the status quo and the potential for the future of an independent Scotland to be as wide as possible, suggested by Brexit making things worse and a campaign showing a better way.

Yes, I fully expect Brexit to make things worse for Scots, indeed it already has, but should we depend on this alone?

Shouldn’t we also be highlighting the many ways by which Westminster Government does not deliver for Scotland? The unequal “partnership”, the paucity of real investment, along with historical diktats like the poll tax and contemporary versions like the bedroom tax and austerity which impact on Scots severely, are just some examples.

Equally relevant is the historical autocratic abuse of power at Westminster created by an electoral system that effectively delivers an “elected dictatorship” whichever party wins. Lurching from periods of protecting left or right has created a country that is adversarial, not at ease with itself, and further cleaved apart by Brexit. The folly of a Tory Party unsuccessfully attempting to heal its gaping wounds in complete disregard for the economic health and wealth of the people who the country is supposed to be run for.

Why would Scots want to remain part of a UK union when its government has the clearest evidence that Brexit is a political and economic nonsense and yet, rather than publishing the information fully, deviously seeks to deny us access to it to decide for ourselves, and is prepared to drive us over the economic cliff edge rather than apply the brake that these documents may/seem to offer?

Don’t these shenanigans shift the appeal of the status quo backwards?

And wouldn’t the appeal of organising our political governance in a more consensual, truly democratic and accountable manner to benefit all those living and working in Scotland shift the future potential forward, thereby widening the gap and encouraging a Yes vote?

For me, the appeal of independence is just how poor Westminster Government is, and how it consistently disregards and abuses those it governs over, while singularly serving the vested interests promoted by mainstream media.

Shouldn’t the choice come down to simple logic?

Jim Taylor

WITH a no-deal Brexit likely and shoppers facing a huge increase in the cost of their shopping, now is the time to win over the undecided. Our mentally ill and disabled are facing further Tory cuts – do we want to be choked alive by Brexit and austerity our do we push the boat out and go it alone and prosper independent?

Stevie, Motherwell
via text

THE mention in Friday’s National that Glasgow is about to withdraw the Freedom of the City from Aung San Suu Kyi makes one wonder if we in Scotland really know what is happening in today’s Burma.

It may not be widely known, for instance, that her Indian lawyer was shot dead in the back of the neck on arrival at Yangon Airport with his welcoming daughter in his arms. He was returning from a delicate mission to Indonesia to talk with its government about a strategy (presumably hers) to help resolve the Rohingya tragedy. A friend of mine arriving on the same plane was standing three metres away waiting for his wife, the moment he was shot. I personally never saw this incident reported in the media, but have no doubt it took place.

Although with more than 80 per cent of the vote supporting Ms Suu Kyi in the last election, it was only held on condition that the armed forces would retain control of three main government departments, including defence but also in fact controlling all the country’s natural resources, including, we can presume, smuggling. I am not sure what you think she can do.

Gordon Benton
Address supplied

WE need a flagship rail service in Scotland. Something that we can point to as a nation and say with pride: “That is ours. We did it.” The Victorians built the Forth Rail Bridge, which continues to symbolise the engineering excellence of Scotland. What did we do in the 20th or 21st centuries?

I caught the train from Edinburgh Waverley station to Glasgow Queen Street yesterday morning. This train connects Edinburgh and Glasgow, the two population centres in Scotland. The train left Waverley at 7.45 and made stops at Linlithgow, Falkirk, and Lenzie. In total the train was stopped for three minutes and 50 seconds. If you consider the time to slow the moving train and accelerate it back to speed the time cost of these stops was around eight minutes.

The train arrived at Queen Street at 8.40. A non-stop express would have arrived at 8.32, or 15 per cent faster.

We need a prestige, non-stop service from Edinburgh to Glasgow. Let’s call it The Flying Scot. A special paint scheme on the trains leaving from Platform 11 at Waverley arriving at Platform 7 at Queen Street, priority on the line and the expertise of Network Rail dedicated to further improvements on the rail line between the two cities.

With the existing rolling stock and rails, the journey time could be forty seven minutes rather than the current fifty five.The Flying Scot, the Edinburgh to Glasgow Express. The Pride of Scotland.

John Black