East Lothian Courier – 27 October 2022


Well, what a week that was and what a farce the UK’s become. Of course, there should be an election, but turkeys don’t vote for Xmas and the mantra from whoever succeeds Truss will be that they need to stabilise the markets; despite it being them that crashed the economy.

It’s why the push for independence is essential. This isn’t going to change and even if Starmer eventually succeeds, there’ll be no real difference, as he’s already declared that Labour will continue with Tory austerity. A convention should therefore be called of Scotland’s elected representatives to demand that it’s the Scottish people not a Tory Government that decides on a referendum.

Scotland’s a wealthy country yet many are living in penury. We can do so much better than this. All the promises made in 2014 by those that supported the union have turned to dust. We’ve exited the EU, seen Sterling slump, interest rates rise and the UK’s international reputation trashed.

Countries blessed with much less natural resource or other assets such as world leading universities achieve so much more. That pensioners and the poorest are better off in Ireland than Scotland, shows the failure of London rule.

Amidst the maelstrom at Westminster I was able to move a Bill to help address the energy crisis for those poorest and most vulnerable. My proposal would end higher standing charges being faced by those on Pre-Payment Meters. They invariably are least able to pay and therefore to charge them most is perverse.

That many who save to buy a powercard then find it almost all consumed by accrued standing charges is heartlessly cruel. Even Smart Meters don’t end that injustice as 13% of them are on Pre-Payment Meter tariffs. Technology’s meant to liberate not perpetuate injustice.

Similarly, a social tariff should be brought in so that those poorest and most vulnerable pay least for the power. It’s an essential for life not a luxury. Belgium, Spain and other countries do. That Energy Rich Scotland has Fuel Poverty is absurd. The Bill won’t pass in Westminster which is why we need independence.