Letter: Yes, Mr Portillo, we're cynical - but only about politicians

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YOU ARE missing the point, Mr Portillo. It is not British institutions that people are cynical about. It is their representatives, of which you are one.

For a supposedly intelligent and obviously ambitious man you have grossly misjudged the current mood of the electorate. Where were you the week before your speech? In an isolation tank?

Did you really expect to bring us into line like naughty children to your figurative headteacher? Your chest-beating is nothing more than that, and does not conceal the fact that the headmaster's trousers are around his ankles.

You talk of 'national cynicism'] Your speech exhibits a degree of personal cynicism way beyond the measure of its words.

You have done little good for yourself and even less for your party. Hopefully you will both pay the price of this at the next election.

Frank G West

Ruislip, Middlesex