In reference to Mark Steel’s piece on Nigel Farage: to my senses, it feels a rather one-dimensional, shallow, sarcastic bore of an article that would be more at home in a school magazine. It even has the faint whiff of jealousy that Farage (I am a political neutral) can have the cheek to move so easily from pub and political playground to Trump Tower and the Ritz. “How can such a man be so jumped-up and think he can move between social stations with apparent impunity?” is the jaundiced inference.
In reality, it takes some nous and savvy to achieve what he has from such limited resources. Trump is no fool. And like him or loath him, neither is Farage.
The article comes across as unfunny, mealy-mouthed and begrudging. Surely there's a more elegant way to cover Farage's unusual political idiosyncrasies than this sarcastic harangue.
The Independent should be aiming for a more intelligent, broader-reaching debate – and thought provoking use of its pages (as is most of the rest of your excellent online news and opinion).
Dr Duncan Robertson
An open letter to Tim Farron
Dear Mr Farron,
It's perfectly obvious to me that – as I've said before – your attitude to leaving the European Union, and your efforts to overturn the vote, could quite easily lead to civil unrest.
You are not alone, of course, but you are among the chief Remoaners, and I wonder, in the most regrettable event that this does happen, if you will be happy then?
There may be a reasonable argument for Parliament having a say at the end of the process, but to add that the vote may then be overturned – and imply that you hope it is – is tantamount to incitement. Disgraceful.
An open letter to Iain Duncan Smith
During the Brexit campaign we were advised by some “not to trust the experts” who gave prescient warnings of what would happen to the economy. (Am I old-fashioned to trust experts to service my car, advise on personal finance and look after my health?)
As a direct result the public were encouraged to vote on a mixture of half-truths and misinformation, overlaid sadly by xenophobic hatred. I am concerned that leave voters increasingly see themselves as the “majority” qualified to determine the future of this country. This is dangerous populism which in the Germany of the 1920/30s had disastrous consequences for the world.
If Britain aspires to true democracy, we should expect all responsible politicians, amongst whom I count you, to avoid extreme, unqualified statements – “every forecast” – which continue to mislead and inflame divisive passions.
Please do your bit!
After Brexit, it's time to reform Parliament
Whilst the uproar and palaver around Brexit continues perhaps we ought to take some time out to ponder what to do after we have left? For surely isn't it the case that the whole point of Brexit is that it gives the people of this country a chance to totally reorder our priorities.
Brexit for me was about restoring democracy to our Parliament from the utterly undemocratic and corrupt EU but Westminster itself suffers from these very same problems with it's big business lobbyists, unelected House of Lords and outdated first past the post voting system.
So let's grab this opportunity to further the revolution the British people have started and let's bring in proportional representation, ban the big business lobbying system and abolish the House of Lords. Then we have to address the monstrous economic inequalities this country faces and that requires some sort of socialism and a major redistribution of wealth.
For if the Brexit vote is going to be reduced to immigrant kicking then that is utterly unworthy of us and makes cowards of the men and women who voted out! Surely it doesn't mean that?
We should look to Canada when considering a new deal with the EU
It appears that our Government is having great difficulty deciding on what they want from a trade deal with the EU post-Brexit. Perhaps they should buy one from off the shelf.
Canada has just negotiated a trade deal with the EU. From a cursory reading it seems to offer much that our government wishes to achieve. Why don't we, pro temp, say that we will have the same as Canada?
Presumably Canada does not have to accept free movement of people? And surely the EU would not offer us less than Canada? At least use the agreement as a basis that could be tweaked. After all the structures for dealing with Europe are already in place.
Just an idea!
Theresa May has risen above her incompetency
Regarding Mary Dejevsky’s Voices piece about the PM operating at the limits of her competency (24 November), I am so pleased that others have spotted this. I was always told that people are promoted to their level of incompetency. I think that Theresa May has managed to be promoted way above her level of incompetency and now she is providing absolutely no leadership just when we need it. Something else to thank Brexit for.