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

Share

Lord Owen describes Ed Miliband's reforms of the Labour party which include union members having to "opt in" to make party contributions as "brave and bold" ("Miliband reform gains backing from Lord Owen", 2 March). This will put Labour at a huge disadvantage to the Tories in terms of party funding.

It is now the turn of the Tories to be "brave and bold". It is surely unacceptable that company shareholders (many from modest backgrounds) should find themselves contributors to the Tory party against their wishes. The Tories should only accept donations where shareholders have opted in to make a donation. This should also apply to banks and insurance companies: a customer who doesn't want to opt-in to a political contribution should be offered more favourable terms in lieu of this lesser expense to the company.

But what about consumers? Every time Labour or Liberal Democrat voters buy a product from a company that donates to the Tories they are unwittingly contributing to the enemy. The solution is obvious: there should be information on the label stating to which party (if any) the company contributes – in a similar fashion to warnings on cigarettes!

Phil Nicholson

Glasgow

Harriet Walker's article (New Review, 2 March) on her diversion from Heathrow to Newcastle makes for depressing reading. Comments such as "I've no idea where it is" and "It's basically Scotland" fill me with despair. It is amazing how many Britons are happy to cross half the world to go on holiday but will not explore a different part of their own country. Why are supposedly intelligent and educated people so ignorant?

And is Southern culture really so sophisticated or are we confusing region with social class? I can't see any difference between Geordie Shore and Towie apart from accent. The extent of regional prejudice in this country borders on racism. Northern people are as fed up with regional ignorance as black people are with racial stereotypes.

Pippa Lewer

Morpeth, Northumberland

There was a time when the United States would support the undemocratic removal of democratically elected heads of state in its own backyard; now it does so in Russia's backyard – and has the "incredible" audacity to be outraged when Russia responds ("Ukraine crisis", 2 March).

Peter McKenna

Liverpool

Gavin Plumley is right that Richard Strauss is due a reappraisal in his 150th anniversary year ("The sensitive side of Strauss", 2 March). It would also be an appropriate time for the classical music channels to make sure his first name is pronounced correctly.

On Radio 3 and Classic FM there is an aversion to pronouncing certain German forenames the German way. Schumann's Robert and Wagner's Richard are pronounced as though they were British. Richard Strauss suffers the same fate. The same broadcasters would never pronounce Ravel's Maurice the English way.

David Head

Navenby, Lincolnshire

Liberal Democrat president Tim Farron's claim that only two kinds of votes will count in the forthcoming European elections – those for his party and those for Ukip – seems like a rather polarised position to take ("It's us or Ukip, says Lib Dem contender", 2 March.

One assumes that the Lib Dems are a party of the political centre. If Mr Farron really does think society is fundamentally split, with little middle ground, and he may be right, there are surely other political parties he could be involved with.

Keith Flett

London N17

Alan Gregory (Letters, 2 March) offers Logan's Run as a warning against euthanasia. Isn't it about time that we had a grown-up debate on this subject without recourse to political, religious (and literary) hysteria?

I doubt whether legalised voluntary euthanasia for the terminally failing elderly would leave me in anything like the danger of unwanted death as the apparently readily accepted dangers of venturing upon almost any road, by any means, these motor-crazed days?

Alison Sutherland

Kirkwall, Orkney

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/March/9

React Now

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

Recruitment Genius: Finance Assistant

£17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join a leading...

Recruitment Genius: Dialler Administrator

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Main purpose: Under the directi...

AER Teachers: SEN Teaching Assistant - London - September

£65 - £75 per day + competitive rates: AER Teachers: This central London prima...

AER Teachers: Graduate Primary Teaching Assistant

£65 - £75 per day + competitive rates: AER Teachers: A good primary school in ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

More actors should follow Mark Rylance’s lead on affordable seats

David Lister
Anti-fracking protestors gathered outside Lancashire County Hall in Preston last month (Alamy)  

If Cuadrilla get their way on fracking, it will come at the cost of Lancashire's democracy

Hannah Martin
A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories

What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist?

Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Chinese web dissenters using coded language to dodge censorship filters and vent frustration at government

Are you a 50-center?

Decoding the Chinese web dissenters
The Beatles film Help, released 50 years ago, signalled the birth of the 'metrosexual' man

Help signalled birth of 'metrosexual' man

The Beatles' moptop haircuts and dandified fashion introduced a new style for the modern Englishman, says Martin King
Hollywood's new diet: Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?

Hollywood's new diet trends

Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?
6 best recipe files

6 best recipe files

Get organised like a Bake Off champion and put all your show-stopping recipes in one place
Ashes 2015: Steven Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Middlesex bowler claims Ashes hat-trick of Clarke, Voges and Marsh
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Atwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works