I WAS very pleasantly surprised to read The Wee Ginger Dug’s article, (EU treatment of Catalans a betrayal of democracy, The National, November 8) because he exactly echoes my opinions on the passivity of the EU leaders in relation to the suppression of democracy in Catalonia.

He writes: “the EU has shown itself to be a union of elites, a union of the powerful and of existing state structures. It is not a union of European peoples,” and he ends his article by suggesting that we need to rethink our attitude to the EU.

Kevin McKenna touches on the same subject in his article (Greed still rules the world The National, November 8), pointing out that the Paradise Papers “detail how far the richest and most powerful people in the world maintain their position at the top of society” and concludes by asking: “Will this ever reach a point when the rest of us will rise up and overcome this weakness?”

At the risk of being accused, again, of inciting violence, I say that this will not be possible while the current leaders of the EU are in power. We must insist that our politicians speak out against the hegemony which controls the EU, vote against their proposals, stop succumbing to the pressure they feel under to defend a union which is clearly undemocratic.

The dangers of not doing so are very well expressed in Ian Greenhalgh’s letter, (Poppies can be a reminder to learn the lessons of history, The National, November 8), in which he asks why European leaders appeased the monster that was growing in the heart of Europe, allowing the attacks on democratic parties and the incarceration and eventually the murder of political opponents and I agree with him that there are similarities now with pre-Second World War Europe.

I think his idea of painting the yellow stripes of the Catalan Senyera on Poppies this year is an excellent idea but it is not enough. Our politicians must, as the Dug pointed out, reassess their support for the EU, perhaps changing our allegiance to what Leslie Riddoch describes as a “Northern Alliance”. It is time to stop turning a blind eye to the EU’s misuse of power.
Lovina Roe

IT has been the Westminster government’s economic system for decades that the “trickle down” system was the best for the country, and that if we give multinationals and billionaires more money, they will invest more and create jobs and wealth for everyone.

Unfortunately, it is only too evident that during recessions that they are more intent to hide any excess monies away for themselves. Making it more complicated and intricate is not an attempt to hide this from tax authorities, but to make it impossible for the general population to track what these people are up to.

We all know that the stock market, or the financial sector can bring down a government with the flick of a switch. Add to that the conflict of interest many rich politicians have in these sectors and we will see that nothing will be done that threatens the status quo.
Jim McGregor
Kirkintilloch, East Dunbartonshire

THERE is a muckle stushie going on about tax avoidance. The very rich are squirrelling away millions on islands and we do not like it.

Before we become too pious about this let us all take a long look in the mirror and ask if given the legal opportunity to avoid paying tax, would we would at least give it consideration? I suggest that if we are honest many of us would. There are already legitimate means within the UK to reduce our tax and I have no doubt that most of us use them.

The outrage we feel is however at those who are already obscenely rich seeking to become even more so. We have to face the fact that very largely what they do is legal. The fault lies with Government for failing to close absurd loopholes so that we all pay tax according to our means.
R Mill Irving
Gifford, East Lothian

BETTER Together did not hesitate when telling us that a Yes vote would plunge Scotland into a governmental maelstrom. A No vote seems to have got us there too: Brexit; failed snap election; Cabinet ministers in maverick mode and a Prime Minister holding on to her seat by the stickiness of her leather trousers! Now, just where did we Scots go wrong?
Peter Barjonas