THANK goodness for yesterday’s National. Terrific contributions from Martin Hannan, Paul Kavanagh and particularly from Ruth Wishart, who so effectively has put into succinct words thoughts I was struggling to express. It is at this point one recognises what an asset The National is. Let us make sure it survives this crisis.

I am on the end of some amazing vitriol online for expressing some very valid points. Let me put it simply. If the acquittal of Alex Salmond results in a public civil war in the SNP, our Unionist enemy will have achieved its best possible result. And we can forget about independence. So over the next immediate period we will see how big our big hitters actually are. And whether they understand that independence is bigger than any one of us.

READ MORE: Holyrood's Alex Salmond complaint committee postpones investigation

If the right priorities are remembered and the SNP has a good look at itself – and sees the weaknesses and self-indulgent diversions many of its most loyal members are struggling to understand and cope with – we can come out of this actually stronger.

This might be the kick up the arse we needed – or the end of our dreams.

David McEwan Hill
Sandbank, Argyll

FOLLOWING the exposure of Derek Mackay’s unacceptable behaviour, Jackson Carlaw spoke in Holyrood, quoting at length the definition of grooming from the Children 1st website.

He apparently felt that MSPs needed him to repeat information that was publicly available. Others might have felt that he was seeking to make political capital about a deplorable incident that was neither condoned nor defended by the Scottish Government.

READ MORE: SNP MPs call for resignations after Salmond verdict

Following the verdict in the trial of Alex Salmond, Jackson Carlaw said there were questions for the First Minister, the Scottish Government and the SNP to answer. It is not clear why the acquittal of an individual, following due judicial process in court, should require comment from the First Minister, the Scottish Government or the SNP – unless we are to conclude that Carlaw, once again, is seeking, cynically and cheaply, to exploit the matter for his own party-political ends.

Gavin Brown

NOW that Alex Salmond has been acquitted of ALL charges, why don’t the powers-that-be give him a top post working for the Yes movement and the SNP attacking the Westminster establishment and all their lies? They are running scared of him and now is the time to expose them for what they are. He is the man to do it, so get the finger out and give him the job ASAP. Let’s fight them in the courts if we have to, but fight we must, because they are not just going to hand us independence on a plate. come on, Scotland – the only thing we can lose is our chains

Michael Mc Dermott
Old Kilpatrick

HAVING watched both of the seismic statements made by Boris Johnson and Nicola Sturgeon on Monday evening and agreeing with every measure, I was again astounded that no-one raised testing as part of it.

As I went into the benefits of testing extensively in my previous letter, I would just like to point out one further imperative invaluable point. By putting in place a universal lockdown across the population without testing for those that may have had the virus and recovered, we are losing what may be a substantial number of people who could return to their jobs in the NHS, Scottish Ambulance Service and other support roles, and as more people recover from the virus the numbers supporting new patients would increase all the time.

The more people you have to provide support, the less burden you have on the NHS and infrastructure. Without testing for antibodies you just lock everyone away and you will never know when we are near “herd immunity”. Test! Test!! Test!!!

Ian Johnstone

CONTRARY to the hysteria in parts of the press and the bombast of Boris, I’m not shocked at the lack of Covid-19 compliance – I’m dumb-struck by the passivity.

When are we going to get rid of Dominic “cull the old and sick” Cummings and Boris Johnny-cum-lately “I’ll get around to protecting the plebs when me and my dad have had a pint down the boozer” and replace them with an emergency COMPETENT administration?

Ditto the US. When are they going to replace the dullest tool in the shed and his racist sharpie with an administration with a plan?

Amanda Baker

I FULLY support the sentiments of Alasdair Forbes’s letter (Wishart’s column should be framed, March 24) but would go further. Yes, we have to recognise that the real heroes of this current Covid-19 crisis are not politicians, billionaires or self-appointed captains of industry but the real workers protecting and saving lives. From the NHS to social care, from shop workers to delivery drivers and including hard-working council and community workers supporting those forced to self-isolate. Contrast this with the news that hedge funds have made millions out of betting which sector of the economy is going to suffer most during this period.

Instead of simply showing our support to those on the front line, why not tax the life out of the hedge funds and redistribute their ill-gotten gains to NHS staff, social care staff, those who are stocking shelves in supermarkets, those facing abuse from angry and selfish shoppers etc? Even just a one-off bonus to thank them for supporting us would be welcome until we can re-evaluate our whole economy and ensure that such workers get the real recognition they deserve in a decent wage.

Cllr Kenny MacLaren