COLUMNS written by Andrew Tickell are always worth reading but I thought his article in Sunday’s National was one of his best (Tories cling to their precious Union with little heart but much delusion, June 9). It contributed to a serious debate, and was thoughtful while also containing a couple of paragraphs that were laugh-out-loud funny.

Looking again at Jeremy Hunt’s comments, quoted by Andrew, another absurdity struck me. In his desire to suggest that Adam Smith’s genius was somehow the product of the Union, Hunt said that Smith was an “example of the brilliance of our precious Union when the talents of the people of Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England come together”.

Smith died in 1790. This was more than 140 years before Northern Ireland in its current form came into being. I am never sure which is the more staggering aspect of the current crop of Tory MPs, their breath-taking stupidity or their shameless flaunting of their breath-taking stupidity!

Gavin Brown