AT Thursday evening’s Labour love-fest in Edinburgh, Gordon “the Vow” Brown made empty promises Scots have heard before, ad nauseum. Decentralise Westminster power, devolve power to the “regions” and “make the Union work”.

Politely, this is drivel. Brown, Burnham, Drakeford and Sarwar have zero power to effect these changes because they won’t be in a Labour government. Starmer wants to “make Brexit work” when it’s a complete bust; keep energy, transport and water in private hands; accelerate NHS privatisation; jail protestors; criminalise migrants; fight the unions over fair pay; impose further austerity; and avoid electoral reform. Labour is a Tory twin.

READ MORE: Ruth Wishart: Begging for indyref2 gets us nowhere – so take stock

Regardless of who rules – Sunak or Starmer – the UK Government will ram through the retained EU law bill to reassert complete Westminster control over Scotland. Devolution was always a trap – power devolved is power retained.

Scotland has no veto over English decisions – our MPs are outvoted 10 to 1, we’ve no control over our land, resources, or economy and our people are poor. The Union is a sham and Scotland no more than a colony within it.

The only way to stop the ransacking of Scotland is for the sovereign people to take back control over territorial assets that have, under international law, always been theirs.

Leah Gunn Barrett

ANDREW Fletcher of Saltoun, the great Scottish “patriot” (as described by Founding Father and Third President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson) and last Commissioner of the “old” Parliament of Scotland, opposed the Act of Union (1707). Fletcher assessed that due to London’s relative size, an increasing proportion of wealth and decision-making would inevitably be drawn to the south-east corner of England. Three hundred years later it is clear that Fletcher’s concerns were justified and that Scotland is now suffering the social and economic consequences of Westminster policies favouring the wealthy elite predominantly based in and around London.

READ MORE: Stuart Cosgrove: Alister Jack and Gordon Brown reveal devolution truth

Gordon Brown, former prime minister of the failing “United Kingdom”, apparently now recognises this fundamental distortion but rather than openly reject the current constitutional arrangements, he deviously attempts to separate the SNP from “patriotism” through exploiting the term “nationalism” (which in general use is contrary to the social and international ideals of that party) in order to help conjure-up the mirage of a “middle way”. Furthermore, this rather crude misdirection also aims to embrace the right-wing nationalism of the BNP, Ukip and the ERG in the common cause of “British patriotism” to be espoused by Labour under Sir Keir Starmer.

This new Labour strategy may work for the party in the “red wall” of the north of England, but socialists in Scotland are already wise to the tricks of Brown’s previous partner in crime, the arch-wizard Tony Blair, and will not be fooled again. The only way for Labour supporters in Scotland to attain genuine socialist governance is not to vote for another illusionist, Anas Sarwar, or Starmer’s other acolytes, but to vote for a party committed to self-determination at the next General Election. At least then if independence, or at least a referendum, is not immediately forthcoming, the SNP will in the meantime expose the feet of the next prime minister to the burning egalitarian fire of Scottish patriotism that has been suppressed for more than three centuries.

Stan Grodynski
Longniddry, East Lothian

THE EU referendum vote revealed the difference between Gordon Brown’s British patriotism and Scottish nationalism (“Wee Ginger Dug: Gordon Brown says my nationalism’s better than yours”, Jun 3).

British patriotism is isolationist, taking back power by separating the United Kingdom from the European Union, expanding its global influence by increasing military power.

Scottish nationalism is internationalist, taking back power by separating from the United Kingdom to restore closer connections with countries in Europe and elsewhere, expanding its global influence by making Scotland a better place to live and work.

John Jamieson
South Queensferry

SARWAR must groan every time Brown opens his gub. Brown is decades past his sell by date and totally out of touch.

David Andrew

ANOTHER year, another hot spell and yet another warning by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) to save water. “Take shorter showers, turn off the tap when brushing teeth, avoid the use of garden hoses” and much more.

READ MORE: Water scarcity alert issued after dry spring in Scotland

Why does Sepa not warn the highly paid directors of Scottish Water that they will be sacked unless they drastically reduce the 459 million litres of water lost EVERY day to leaks in the water pipes, especially since similar losses have been going on for years? Surely there are some ways to hold back so much river water from going into the sea? Dredging? Do we need to start building desalination plants around our coast?

Clark Cross

FUNNY how Phillip Schofield’s peccadilloes are all over the Tory-run news and media in the UK just when Boris Johnson announces he is going to hand over all the WhatsApp stuff and notes direct to the Covid inquiry in spite of the Cabinet Office seeking a judicial review. You would think they are trying to bury a bad news story, wouldn’t you?

Peter Thomson