GEORGE Kerevan was right to suggest “Johnson is lying when he says no austerity over the decade to come” (June 29). Mr Kerevan correctly points out that increased borrowing to get the shovel-ready projects Mr Johnson is promising up and running to create jobs will see increased debt, which needs paid back by the taxpayer through increased taxation – there is no other way.

So the PM is deluding himself in saying there will be no return to austerity. The public is fully aware of the economic crisis the country is now facing, with massive long-term job losses. Many households who are fortunate enough to hold on to their jobs will incur increases to their utility bills, local government services and taxation and those who are unfortunate and lose their employment will be forced on to benefits.

READ MORE: Boris Johnson is lying when he says there's no austerity in the next decade

The Government in Scotland knows the economy and needs of the Scottish people better than anyone or anywhere else. What a pity that in our hour of economic need, in such a critical time, Scotland does not have full control of her own economy.
Catriona C Clark

AS always, I enjoyed Kevin McKenna’s piece in Wednesday’s National (Under Johnson’s Tory cult, Britain is a country that faces a crumbling future, July 1). After reading it, you can say that pulling the strings of the incompetent rabble which constitutes the UK Government we have in one corner Dominic the Rose-garden Rasputin and in the other, the Lyin’ King!
Alan Woodcock

THE World Health Organisation report advising that minimum unit pricing on alcohol is working better than taxation to reduce alcohol consumption should be applauded. This is a “Scotland good news” story, and it is not often that we get a mention on the world stage.

Despite the six years of argument and legal challenges by vested interests, its implementation in 2018 is making a change in the alcohol consumption levels in the most “at-risk” groups, the change actually being a support action for this group.

This is what we should expect from our Government – transformational change for the benefit of our society – but often it is hard graft changing attitudes which are less than flexible due to their embedded historic and financial position.

There will be others who will continually “throw stones” at our Government projects and highlight failure, so it seems fair that when an external “job well done” is received we should acknowledge it.

So well done all who stuck with this to get this legislation through.
Alistair Ballantyne
Birkhill, Angus

IF anything, Covid-19 has highlighted the many differences between Scotland and England, something often dismissed and discounted, particularly by those who think Scotland would be none the better for independent self-government.

The pandemic has been showing contrasting responses in the two countries, to lockdown for instance, with Scotland exhibiting more patience – though a considerably greater population in England with its higher density living conditions could explain this.

The two governments are also seen to have handled the crisis differently, with Scotland being more explicit and less erratic and this reflecting the general citizenry of both countries. Despite which many individuals are un-bordered in their opinions and are individuals regardless of country.

Many in England do not regard the antics of PM Boris Johnson with the amused tolerance of “that’s just Boris for you!” and there are a few in Scotland who regard FM Nicola Sturgeon as too risk-averse.

Being an individual, and Scottish, and unashamed of holding what I hope are open-minded opinions, I am happy enough to say that if all of this happened to be my report of an international football match between the two countries, I would be reporting a decisive win for Scotland, something like 4-1 or 4-0.

I would also be adding that the England manager, Johnson, had been unceremoniously sacked and an audience with the monarch to notify the position was unnecessary. Ach well, anything to lighten the gloom

of lockdown ...
Ian Johnstone

I DON’T quite understand why getting the most out of the voting system for the Scottish Parliament is thought of as gaming or a ruse.

It is perfectly legitimate for any registered political party to enter the contest for seats as MSPs in the Scottish Parliament.

The Alliance for Independence is expected to launch some time in the next few weeks with the intention of contesting only list seats – a perfectly good way of making an impact.

Having only one prominent independence party in Scotland is not healthy. Looking forward to getting some fresh air and vitality when the Alliance for Independence starts working.
Chris Saga
Isle of Bute

AFTER the outrage from Jackson Carlaw over Nicola’s fetching tartan mask,I suggest that “Fluffy£ Mundell on his next shopping expedition should wear a Union Jack mask, and of course Alister (Union) Jack and the rest of

the Scottish Tories. Some of the Border farmers who voted for this dross should maybe replace their union masks with tartan.
John Taylor