Letters - Scotland gets Covid badly wrong

Your Leader comment yesterday note-0says “Hospitality closures are a bitter pill to swallow but science says Scottish Government had no real choice.”

Friday, 9th October 2020, 7:30 am

I am confident no scientist on the planet can justify eating a meal as a resident in a hotel but not enjoying a glass of wine at the same time.

This really has now spiralled out of control. The reasoning behind these utterly ridiculous rules is plain to see. The FM doesn’t have the guts to just shut down the hospitality industry, so she makes it impossible for operators to do business, so when the whole thing turns to dust, she never said you couldn’t trade.

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I am sure I’m not alone in thinking I won’t be out to eat if I cannot enjoy a glass of wine/beer with my meal, therefore cancelling any accommodation I have booked, and in so doing rendering the venue “shut down”. The terms "Orwellian” and “draconian” are now way too shallow to describe the lengths these faceless advisers will go to, rendering the economy utterly destroyed and bankrupt.

In the same issue Professor Jason Leitch says: “Science will get us out of this, crowds will come back to stadia, we’ll be back out in restaurants and the pubs will be full.” He then goes on to un-predict this nonsense to cover his back, “I don’t know when it will be – most likely scenario spring 2021 and into summer of 2021, but I don’t know that for sure”.

The problem is, these decisions are made by people who will never have to bear the consequences of these ridiculous laws. Guaranteed jobs, pensions protected and anonymity from the population whose lives and livelihoods that are being destroyed.

Not one other western world country has come up with this nonsense, so we can at least say unequivocally, we are leaders of the world at last.

DAVID MILLAR

West High Street, Lauder

Bad old days

As a young boozer in the 1960s I was familiar with "bona fide traveller" rules allowing me to get alcohol on a Sunday which I couldn't get in my own town, by travellingg forth of Rosyth.

So in the pubs of many towns outwith my area I signed a register stating I was travelling from Rosyth to wherever and drank heartily. The police entering any seven-day licensed hotel were faced with an impossible task in checking the many travellers to see if they were mala fide. But when they did investigate they were met with convincing stories of caring relatives on their way to visit sick grannies in Burntisland or Buckhaven.

The Scottish Government’s Central belt shutdown will revive this practice, with boozers from Glasgow and Edinburgh travelling to the nearest beer garden outside of their restriction zones, but at what cost of spreading Covid-19?

I hope I am mistaken but this policy seems to me to be as ill-thought-out as the non-testing of care home staff and the return of university students and freshers from all over the world.

TOM MINOGUE

Victoria Terrace, Dunfermline

Close everywhere

Yet another fudge by the SNP. Stop selling alcohol at 6pm but sell carry outs, but where will you drink them? No glass of wine with your meal at the hotel but you can have a bottle in your room? Surely if the effects of alcohol is the problem, which it probably is, then the answer is to close all points of sale for two weeks with an immediate ban on the amount bought?

JAMES WATSON

Randolph Crescent, Dunbar

Ah yes, statistics

Whilst referring to the voter figures from the 2014 referendum, Gill Turner (Letters, 8 October) asks "what is it they say about statistics?". I hope I can help answer this. In the 2014 referendum 2,001,929 people voted "No" and 1,617,989 voted "Yes". Statistically this meant 46.7 per cent of the electorate voted "No" and 37.6 per cent voted "Yes" or, looking at it from another angle, 55.3 per cent of those who voted said "No" and 44.7 per cent said yes.

So, whatever way you look at it, these statistics tell us that the people of Scotland do not want independence under the SNP.

JIM HOUSTON

Winton Gardens, Edinburgh

Power forgets

What next in the Alex Salmond fiasco enquiry? Our current First Minister is told at a meeting that allegations of sexual misconduct could be raised against the former First Minister. You would think that such a bombshell might induce a certain resonance in the memory. Evidently not. Nicola Sturgeon "forgot" (your report, 8 October). I am beginning to wonder if we are suffering a pandemic of amnesia in the corridors of power. The Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government similarly "forgot" about key meetings and facts during the course of this enquiry. Maybe, like Jeane Freeman, they are "tired".

Moreover Peter Murrell, the Scottish equivalent of Dominic Cummings, has trouble expressing himself clearly. When he sends a message stating that it would be a "good time to start pressurising the police" in relation to the Salmond allegations he means no such thing. He means he was "directing" people to address the police on the matter and not the SNP!

Is it not extremely alarming that some of the most powerful figures in the running of our country appear to be amnesiac or illiterate? And astonishing that the regime seemingly continues to meet with approval. Gina Davidson (same edition) hits the nail on the head. Sturgeon's capacity for "sympathetic communication" is what is seeing her through the current crisis relatively unscathed.

The old joke about sincerity in politics springs to mind. Nicola Sturgeon is a master at faking it - when she remembers.

COLIN HAMILTON

Braid Hills Avenue, Edinburgh

Busy busy busy

So Nicola Sturgeon assures us she 'forgot' about a meeting in which she believes she was told about sexual harassment claims against Alex Salmond - citing a busy day. Really? Eye-watering claims about your former mentor and friend, the previous SNP leader and First Minister - and you forget? Whatever next? Will Ms Sturgeon be unable to recall her dream since teenager years is independence? Or fail to turn up for her daily TV appearances? I very much doubt it, don't you?

MARTIN REDFERN

Melrose Roxburghshire

Wha’s like wha?

I agree with David Roche's views on chauvinism (Letters, 8 October) but for a Scotsman to claim that this is far more of an English problem is quite amusing.

The New Year greeting of "Wha's like us, damn few etc." speaks loads. The unqualified statement in a Scottish museum that Robert Bruce was born at Turnberry Castle when he was actually born in England of an English father, the tartanisation of Scotland with "ancient" clan tartans actually invented by a pair of immigrant fraudsters, books proclaiming Scotland's invention of the 18th century Enlightenment, etc.The list is endless. In this respect I think we probably do "lead the world" as the current Scottish Government keeps telling us, even in renewable energy when we import almost all of the means to utilise this - and I was first introduced to large-scale wind energy use in California nearly 50 years ago.

(DR) A McCormick

Kirkland RoadTerregles, Dumfries

Here’s George!

George Galloway knows perfectly well that there is not going to be a single Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat candidate at Rutherglen and Hamilton West. The Tories and the Lib Dems hardly feature in that constituency. The Labour candidate is going to be the man who lost the seat to the awesomely impressive Margaret Ferrier, or it is going to be someone who was no better than that. That man, Ged Killen, resigned from Jeremy Corbyn’s front bench in order to vote in favour of the Single Market.

Galloway was supposed to lose his deposit at Bradford West in 2012, but he took 55.9 per cent of the vote in an eight-way split, and he topped the poll in every ward, including those which were more than 90 per cent white. Rutherglen and Hamilton West will be the first by-election since Sir Keir Starmer had become Leader of the Labour Party. It will be for a seat that Labour had lost by a mere 5,230 votes as recently as last December. There are scarcely the words to describe how much we must long, and how hard we must work, for it to be won by, of all people, George Galloway.

DAVID LINDSAY

Foxhills CrescentLanchester, County Durham

Cancel election

Now Nicola Sturgeon has cancelled the 2021 Scottish Census and Level 5 school exams in 2021 perhaps the Holyrood Election should be stood down as well. There is clearly quite a limitation on what the SNP can "manage" and we will be a year out of step with all other parts of the UK for census data.

Vaughan Hammond

Grinnan RoadBraco, Perthshire

Political dimwits

The behaviour of Margaret Ferrier MP should come as a surprise to no one. It is typical of the arrogance of our politicians and their contempt for the general public. She will not resign. Where else could she get a job with the salary and inflated expenses of an MP?Most of our politicians have never had a proper job, nor could they hold one down. They are elected to meet quotas of equality and diversity, not on ability. Promotion is based on the same criteria. No wonder their dealings with Coronavirus are such an unmitigated disaster. They simply do not have the intellect to deal with it. Both the Westminster and Holyrood governments have proved their total incompetence, from the top down, throughout the pandemic but especially latterly with the decision to allow students to return to University. What did the governments expect?There is probably worse to come with Brexit!

RB Dixon

Deanburn Road, Linlithgow

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