IoS letters, emails and online postings (20 September 2015)


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The Independent Online

Jeremy Corbyn famously does not do personal abuse, but John Rentoul (“Led to the wilderness by a characterless man”, 13 September) is old school, and in so many ways old hat.

His vituperative final paragraph was exactly the sort of ignorant abuse hurled at Clement Attlee, and yet he ended up as one of Britain’s greatest prime ministers. But back to Rentoul. He describes himself as an egalitarian, yet always defends the rich and powerful. His article was a long, confused howl of impotent rage culminating in the name calling of the school bully who has just had his nose unexpectedly bloodied.

In contrast, Tariq Ali’s coolly analytical companion piece fairly and squarely noted the possibilities, and problems, ahead. He also made the key point that Corbyn is the first leader of a major political party in this country whose views on the environment are not just PR deep.

The past three and a half decades have been all about greed and growth. The next period, whether yesterday’s men like it or not, will be about living within our environment and our means. Now in his late sixties, Corbyn could well become the man of the future.

Steve Edwards

Haywards Heath, West Sussex

John Rentoul says that the 250,000 people who voted for Jeremy Corbyn are the same half per cent of the population who have always supported the hard left.

I’m sorry, Mr Rentoul, but at a minimum we represent the two million people who marched against your mate Tony Blair’s  illegal and utterly immoral invasion of Iraq which left 650,000 people dead – [and] with Jeremy Corbyn’s election the time when the police are gonna come a-knocking has come a lot closer. 

Mark Holt


Last week’s leader (“There is an appetite for change”, 13 September), was a sane and civilised reaction to momentous events and, unlike other papers, it was moderate and good mannered. I was disappointed but not surprised to read that the apocalypse is nigh, with all their gratuitous scaremongering. So it was a real pleasure to read a balanced and measured opinion.

Whatever your political persuasion it must be agreed that this unassuming gentleman has upended our jaded political system, and that, in Corbyn, disenfranchised youth has seen a role model to identify with. The debate has begun – bring it on.

Judith A Daniels

Great Yarmouth, Norfolk

I agree with Joan Smith (“What does sex have to do with tax?”, 13 September). Surely it is logical for the state to legislate on civil partnerships for people wanting to live together for life, pooling assets, sharing responsibility for children, becoming official next of kin, and so on – and leave religions to their own decisions on marriage. I see no reason why siblings or friends couldn’t enter into a civil partnership and then adopt children.

Henrietta Cubitt


Campaigners will be very disappointed in the result of the Assisted Dying Bill, and many people will now suffer lingering, distressing deaths. But I believe it was a blessing in disguise, as it covered only people who were going to die soon anyway.

Campaigners wishing for the possibility of a peaceful and assured end to their lives at a time and place of their choosing should be pleased this dismal Bill was rejected. Now there remains an argument to be made, and a more far-reaching change to be crafted for fresh judicial consideration. This cannot come too soon.

Sierra Hutton-Wilson

Evercreech, Somerset

Can someone point out to the Sage of Norwich, D J Taylor [“We Brits think we’re the best. But why?”, 13 September] that the terms “Britishness” and “Englishness” are not interchangeable? In doing, so he provides another example of the very English arrogance he is so anxious to decry.

Dr M J Morris

Hamilton, Lanarkshire