IoS letters, emails & online postings (9 February 2014)

Share

The article "Ignore Brand and vote, teens urged" (2 February) fails to "engage with" Brand's insights (and with the frustration of those who care but feel impotent).

The electoral reform movement puts forward conflicting messages:

1. They inform us that the vast majority of us would be wasting our time voting (because current voting processes will ignore most our votes).

2. They urge us all to register and vote.

Teens are not fools. They will not buy this muddled pair of messages. Brand is right in his analysis, however, he failed to provide a constructive alternative. The electoral reform movement should promote the following strategy:

1. Urge citizens to register (to show you care, and want to engage).

2. Urge citizens to vote (to show you care, and so on).

3. Urge citizens to spoil their votes (to show your disgust and that you want to engage).

4. Campaign for legislation to force official results of elections to include "voted but spoiled", "registered but did not vote", and "eligible but did not register" in addition to the votes cast.

5. Until the state enforces honest reporting of results, the electoral reform movement should join forces to calculate/estimate and republish honest versions of each result, so that all those registering, voting, and spoiling will know that their actions will be recorded and reported (they may well be shown together to have "won" many elections).

6. The Independent newspapers should lead this campaign, should recruit ambassadors, and should publish the honest versions of the election results (as above) as part of that campaign.

Tim Knight

Bristol

Very refreshing to read such an intelligent, honest essay on the general refusal to tackle climate change (Paul Vallely, 2 February). The ruling class would never willingly tolerate re-ordering a financial system that entailed ceasing to make money the arbiter of all things. An alternative, sane economic system would weigh economic outcomes in terms of the well-being of the earth and all living beings. Destructive fantasies of limitless growth measured in GDP or any other numerical yardstick that waves a triumphant flag in the middle of a wasted world would be anathema.

Derek Robertson

Gateshead, Tyne and Wear

When Dr Beeching so ruthlessly closed many of the branch lines of the wonderful rail network that had taken years to construct, many thought he was acting in too much haste without any thought to the future.

The concerns shown at the time have now been illustrated perfectly with the problem currently facing railway travellers in the South-west.

If Dr Beeching had not closed so many other lines in Devon there would be alternative routes from London to Plymouth and Cornwall, avoiding the line running by the sea and through Dawlish.

Colin Bower

Nottingham

It is plain wrong to tell customers "not to bother growing plants in peat-free compost" ("For peat's sake…", 2 February).

Green composts can provide the same level of nutrients while controlling liverwort in container-grown shrubs and without the need to add chemical wetting agents. Crucially, they help divert green waste from landfill, preventing methane emissions which damage the climate. But it is vital that customers know how to distinguish quality.

We run the compost and home composting certification schemes. Customers can have confidence in green compost products bearing these logos. The results would be very different if Which? repeated the exercise using only certified compost products.

Jeremy Jacobs

Technical director, Organics Recycling Group, Renewable Energy Association, London SW1

DJ Taylor is being somewhat churlish about the songs of Pete Seeger (2 February). I agree that some of his lyrics now sound a bit cringeworthy and dated, but he was a child of his time. And just as Haydn inspired the magic of Mozart, so Seeger helped unlock the greatness of Bob Dylan, who took protest songs and music in general to hitherto unimaginable heights.

Stan Labovitch

Windsor, Berkshire

Have your say

Letters to the Editor, The Independent on Sunday, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5HF. Email: sundayletters@independent.co.uk. Online: independent.co.uk/dayinapage/2014/February/9

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Associate Recrutiment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped OTE: SThree: SThree Group have been well ...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE: SThree: Real Staffing Group is seeking Traine...

Year 6 Teacher (interventions)

£120 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: We have an exciting opportunity...

PMLD Teacher

Competitive: Randstad Education Manchester: SEN Teacher urgently required for ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Letter from the Political Editor: Cameron's unexpected tax pledges give the Tories home advantage

Andrew Grice
President Barack Obama walks with U.S. Secret Service agents to Air Force One at Los Angeles International Airport in Los Angeles, Calif., May 8, 2014.  

Obama's Secret Service has become sloppy with its delusions of Hollywood grandeur

David Usborne
Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence