IoS letters, emails & online postings (17 October 2010)

It is stomach-churning to have the millionaires who run the Government continually preach Joseph Goebbels-like on the "fairness" of what they are about to do to us: to us, not to themselves ("David Cameron: What you receive should depend on how you behave", 10 October).

Off-shore funds, tax havens, non-dom status and other perks must be eradicated, and then the obscene salaries, bonuses and share options self-awarded to those greedy architects of the present world recession can be brought back into the real world.

As always, those least able to protect themselves are the first, the major and, most importantly, the easy target chosen by our devious Tory Government.

Eddie Dougall

Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

David Cameron must have meant the following: address the issue of tax avoidance as a priority, as well as benefit fraud. Tax progressively on a rising scale from 50 per cent to 90 per cent for earnings over £150,000 and tax bankers bonuses at 90 per cent. Work on the principle that the gap between rich and poor isn't closed by over-inflated rewards to the rich. When he has acted on those, ordinary men and women will do their bit.

Maggie Watson


It depresses me that those who are not firmly in the Cameron camp are divided themselves, at a time when the opposition needs to be united. Cameron's policies are either created out of crass ignorance of what they will do to ordinary people or a deliberately vindictive attack on all those who are not of his class. We are lost if we don't get some sort of agreement as to how to stop this pernicious Government in its tracks. And it's no good relying on any Liberal Democratic party led by Nick Clegg, the principle-ditcher.

David Gardiner

Posted online

The withdrawal of child benefit and consequent fiscal gymnastics, as with a graduate tax, are unnecessarily complicated. There is something called income tax which is relatively fair and simple, and the obsession with ignoring it seems perverse to say the least.

David Poulter

Easingwold, Yorkshire

Rory Knight Bruce points out that members of the Kernow (Cornwall) branch of the Celtic League or the Keep Cornwall Whole group are mainly "emmets", or incomers ("A river runs through it ...", 10 October).

It is true that the huge influx of outsiders has led to great demographic changes to both Devon and Cornwall. And of course, incomers who settle, start businesses or integrate are welcome, as they add vibrancy and dynamism to local communities. But unfortunately, this has not been the case with many, perhaps most, of the region's most beautiful towns and villages.

These historic centres now often resemble ghost towns during the winter months; the majority of residents long gone, their properties bought as holiday homes, used for maybe two or three months only, and potential local buyers on local incomes priced out of the market. Consequently, shops, post offices, pubs and schools close and the community dies, leaving behind a picturesque but soulless cluster of empty shells.

The glory of both counties used to lie in their diverse and thriving communities. Regrettably, their ongoing decline is destroying the unique heritage that was the chief attraction to tourists in the first place. Instead, we now have seedy party towns or "yuppie" ghettos.

Both Devon and Cornwall have already lost most of what made them special, so why do they bother complaining about trivialities like boundary changes?


Posted online

As your report points out, the volume of sludge from the aluminium plant is not far off that of the oil from the Deepwater Horizon rig ("Second toxic spill feared as Hungarian reservoir wall cracks", 10 October). Yet the significance of this disaster, and others are waiting to happen all over the former eastern bloc, is lost on many people in Britain. The Soviet legacy of heavy industry along Europe's second longest waterway is one of badly maintained plants whose waste products create havoc on farms and untouched wetlands. EU regulations have been slow in coming, and even slower in implementation. As one whose family lives on the threatened Danube, I live in fear of a further and greater environmental disaster.

Natalija Andjelic


I enjoyed some of J K Rowling's stories, but the idea that she has a huge influence is ludicrous ("J K Rowling tops list of Britain's most influential women", 10 October). Can she stop the closure of hospitals? Can she make the Government tackle world debt, abolish unemployment or subsidise trains? Of course not. Being a superstar does not give you influence to go in any direction except the direction which fits society as it is.

John Mullen

Posted online

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