THE current method of elevating an MP into the Office of Prime Minister flies in the face of democracy, especially when considered against the demographics of the UK.

Firstly, the Conservative and Unionist Party has a minority position at Westminster, and at the last General Election gained support from less than 30% of the electorate entitled to vote.

Secondly, it is not in a majority situation in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales. Thirdly, its members at the last count numbered less than those of the Scottish National Party. The convoluted process of elevation however dictates that candidates, or rather volunteers, must gain support from at least eight fellow MPs to remain in the reckoning. The remaining pretenders are then similarly whittled down till only two remain.

The choice is then – guess what?! It is the prerogative of the members of the Tory party to decide who will lead the government of the UK. Since only Tory members have a vote, why is it necessary for each pretender to present his or her prospectus to the 65 million inhabitants? One could be forgiven for thinking that the finally expressed preference just might be somewhat biased! Or has the process been misunderstood?

For how long does Scotland have to put up with this and other nonsensical Westminster so-called systems?

J Hamilton

AS the illusory loyalty to the terror of the wheat fields has now evaporated and Theresa May’s bones have been picked clean, it is perhaps apposite to review the CVs of six of the contenders in the race to the poisoned chalice. In addition to their common factor of drug consumption, each of them has personal qualities which amply qualify them for the job of PM.

In ascending order of repugnance, they are as follows. Rory Stewart: although he is the least repellent and seems to be a decent person, he is still one of them. Dominic Raab: again, a minor-league player, but as his tenure as Brexit Secretary was almost subliminal, he is a no-hoper.

Numbers four to one are so clustered in odium that you couldn’t get a joint paper between them, but here goes: Jeremy Typo doesn’t know the nationality of his wife but was inadvertently immortalised by James Naughtie on Radio 4’s Today programme a few years ago. Andrea Leadsom: she soiled her nest in the last bunfight over an oblique comment relating to her female adversary, so to paraphrase Shakespeare, “Will this nest ne’er be clean?” Michael Gove: to paraphrase Shakespeare again, he dispatched “the ignoblest buffoon of them all” when he knifed Bozo Johnson.

And now to the Eton Mess himself. This creature thinks it appropriate to use expletives in public and seems to have adopted the mantle of Donald Trump’s representative on planet earth. I rest my case.

Joe Cowan

THE Tory leadership contest is on, and how quickly it has become a fight like rats in a barrel (apologies to the real species).

The suppressed extremities in opinion, prejudice and concepts, nods and winks we witnessed while these gallant members and former members of the Cabinet under Theresa May stalked the land here and on the Continent, are now out in the open and are being used against one another. What a sight to behold! Most revealing, that beyond the policy differences and scheming proposals, are the vitriolic attacks by some on their fellow candidates’ honesty and integrity, with Rory Stewart accusing Johnson of lies! Yet Rory Stewart said also that he would still oppose a Labour vote of no confidence in Johnson if Johnson were elected as party leader!!

The Scottish Tories now are pressing Johnson to row back on his tax giveaway and increase in NI contributions as it would adversely Scottish taxpayers as income tax is a devolved power! The Tories are really all over the place. Johnson is really saying go and whistle to his branch party. Of course, Scotland out of the Union would give Tories down south full power!! Maybe the Scots Tories are no longer useful lobby fodder at Westminster after all!

Attack and counter attack at one another, no holds barred and every conceivable trick under the sun to trample the other is used. One can imagine how these unsavoury extremists will operate when the chosen one walks into No 10 and turns his or her venom on the opposition and the country at large! The start will be undermining Parliament – McVey, Raab and others are undermining the very process they purport to support under the guise of honouring the unspecified open referendum. What next, show trials in the Tory party?

As the UK economy shrinks by four times as much as predicted according to the latest figures while we are still in the EU with the four freedoms, disaster looms after Brexit, as there is no “good” or “managed” version.

John Edgar

BARE-FACED cheek best describes the Tory leadership candidates who see the UK departing Europe as okay but Scotland departing the UK as not okay. How do people reach such conclusions and not realise how absurd they are! Indeed, if anything, Scotland leaving the UK Union is more warranted than the UK leaving the European Union. The abuse of Scotland in the UK Union amounts to asphyxiation: hardly so for the UK in Europe. Indeed, as we all are well aware, Scotland is happy to stay in the EU. If our European compatriots were anywhere near as bureaucratically bossy as the Tory leadership suggests, we Scots would be foremost in saying so.

The Tory problem is that if they cannot be the bosses of everybody else then everybody else is at fault. Unable to tell the other EU nations what to do, they’ll settle for telling us Scots what to do instead. The simple fact is, we shouldn’t let them!

Ian Johnstone