Your letters to The Buteman this week

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Send your letters to the editor to Please include your name and address for publication.

With the general election less than four weeks away it’s no surprise to see the May 7 poll at the front and centre of your letters to the April 10 edition of The Buteman.

To see your views in our next print edition, email by 5pm on Monday at the latest. Remember that you must supply your name and address for publication in order to see your letter printed; we also require a daytime contact telephone number in case we need to check any details at short notice, though this will not be published.

Macmillan bag pack raises over £1,000

On behalf of the Bute Branch of Macmillan Cancer Support, I would like to thank everyone who supported our bagpacking effort at the Co-op on Good Friday.

We raised the wonderful sum of £1,022.75.

Our thanks go to the management and staff of the Co-op for allowing us to bagpack there, to the many volunteers who helped throughout the day but especially to the continued generosity of the people of Bute.

Our next fundraising event will be on Friday, May 8, when we are holding a Fashion Show by Glens in the 292 Club. Tickets will be available shortly.

Thank you once again.

Elena Anderson (secretary, Bute branch of Macmillan Cancer Support), 19 Craigmore Road, Rothesay

Lib Dems are an electoral irrelevance

I read the latest weekly anti-SNP rant from Mr Craig on the same day that the leader of the SNP made such a positive impact on the TV debate.

I found it a delicious irony that Ms Sturgeon’s statement on education being available to all on the basis of their ability to learn rather than their ability to pay was quoted by many commentators as the highlight of the debate.

Contrast this with the Liberal Democrats’ record on education. Remember that the Liberal Democrats are the party who (1)promised in 2010 to end university tuition fees in England within six years, then completely ignored this promise; and (2) completely ignored their key election pledge made to voters that under no circumstances would they agree to increase the cap on tuition fees, when in reality, as part of the coalition government, the Liberal Democrats leadership ensured a sufficient number of their MPs voted with their coalition partners to increase the cap on tuition fees from £3,290 to £9,000.

Education is only an example of the ethically bankrupt action of this party after the 2010 general election.

Vince Cable, the Liberal Democrat minister for business and enterprise, publicly stated that it was not important that key election pledges or promises made to you and me by the Liberal Democrats were ignored or broken, but what was important was the subsequent (post election) agreements made with the Tories, their coalition partner.

If truth be told, for the majority of my lifetime (64 years) the Liberals and Liberal Democrats have been a political irrelevance.

The one time the Liberal Democrats found themselves in a position of influence and some power was after the 2010 election. Their actions thereafter proved beyond doubt that they are a party who put the pursuit of power and influence over the promises and pledges made to you and me, the electorate.

The Liberal Democrats have blown their chance. They have had their day in the political relevant spotlight and found to be completely without principles.

I trust the electorate will vote to consign them back to their rightful political box, marked ‘irrelevant’.

David Coll, 17 Argyle Place, Rothesay

Party loyalist won’t serve voters well

I know that all political parties wish their MPs to behave in a collegiate manner. However at the recent SNP conference members passed new standing orders for Westminster MPs, which contain eleven draconian clauses on whipping and discipline, which will be extremely confining to their future MPs.

Conference agreed that “No member shall, within or outwith the parliament, publicly criticize a group decision, policy or another member of the group.”

I began to feel sorry for Mr. Brendan O’Hara, the SNP’s candidate for Argyll and Bute, thinking that he would feel stifled and limited in what he could say and do for his electors.

However I understand that Mr O’Hara is reported to have said: “In this next Parliament loyalty and discipline will be essential. After 33 years of SNP membership I will not break ranks with the parliamentary group when the going, as it surely will, gets tough.”

The people of Argyll and Bute are used to having an MP who will not toe the party line if he thinks something is not in the best interest of his constituents.

Indeed the former Liberal Democrat MP, Alan Reid, showed his independence by voting against his party’s three-line whip on increases in fuel duty, university tuition fees and the ‘bedroom tax’.

Scottish Nationalists by nature are centralists and controlling, as can be seen through their creation of a centralised police force and a centralised fire service, their domination of committees of the Scottish Parliament, and now their insistence on future MPs who must be submissive to the party’s commands.

This Scotland under Nicola Sturgeon is beginning to slide towards a centralising one party state.

We need an MP who knows the local communities of Argyll and Bute and will fight for their best interests.

If you don’t wanted to be represented by a SNP party-minion, then vote for the hardworking, experienced and independent Liberal Democrat candidate, Alan Reid.

Alison Hay, Seaview, Minard, Argyll

Lib Dems are not only pledge breakers

Why is it people have such selective memories? We are now in the throes of an election campaign and I hear all the time that the Lib Dems can’t be trusted as they broke their pledge on tuition fees south of the border. They have apologised for that many times. Are they the only party to break pledges? No the SNP have an appalling record of broken promises since coming to power in 2007.

SNP promised to dual the A9 which is known as a killer road – we are still waiting for that to start. Many lives have been lost. SNP promised to scrap Council Tax – promise broken. SNP pledged in Scotland to abolish student debt – promise broken

The SNP pledges on education are impressive. To maintain teacher numbers – broken. No primary school child would be taught in a class of more than 18 – broken. Every school child up to S4 would have two hours of PE a week – broken. SNP pledged to halt the sale of school playing fields - pledge broken.

Alex Salmond in 2010 proudly announced that the Spanish company Iberdrola would invest £1 billion to upgrade Longannet and Cockenzie as well as £2.7 billion in Scottish businesses. Well he got his sound bite but not the money. Neither the businesses nor the power stations received the cash input promised. Cockenzie has closed and Longannet will close shortly. Broken promises. How many jobs have been lost?

No, you can’t trust the SNP as they will promise anything to get a vote and then conveniently forget their pledge or blame someone else.

Ursula Craig, Rossarden, Shore Road, Cove

Thank you to supporters

May I, on behalf of the St Paul’s Church congregation, thank all who supported our recent Lent Lunches for Christian Aid?
Our grand total amounted to £957.

Sheila Murray, Janette Cottage, Townhead, Rothesay

Rothesay has lost an angel

The family asked me to write a short note as a cousin of Isobel Johnstone. Rothesay has sadly lost a wonderful person, not only those who visited the swimming baths.

Isobel was respected and loved by all, both young and old. She acted like a mother to everyone, helping where she could. The baths will never be the same.

I will donate to any plaque Argyll and Bute Council want to put up in memory of Isobel, and so will all who loved our cousim. To be taken away so young is always a shock, but memories live forever, and mine will never leave me.

Someone asked if she was married, and I said everyone was Isobel’s family. She was kind to the end, had a heart of gold and endless talents.

If there is another life Isobel will be there as usual, doing what she did best - helping everyone, no matter their circumstances.
Thanks from the bottom to my heart go to all who showed her love. She was Rothesay’s angel.

Stephen Johnstone, Gypsy Rose, Ardentinny