Readers' letters - June 14
2017 General Election '“ the one everyone lost
As someone who has always been interested in elections since studying Economics and Government 65 years ago, I have to say I don’t recall a previous one being anything like the one we have just had on June 8.
This is because this was the election that everyone lost.
The Conservatives certainly lost, ending up with fewer seats than if they had not called the election.
Jeremy Corbyn lost because, despite promising the moon and green cheese – and targeting it to draw in students and pensioners – he still couldn’t get in.
The SNP lost big time, as well as losing seats, losing what became, in effect, a pre-run of ‘Indy Ref 2’.
The Liberals had a torrid time. The Greens had little to lose yet managed to lose a bit.
I think the British people lost too, overall, now going into Brexit discussions with a hung parliament.
Would it have been better if this election had never taken place?
With the benefit of hindsight, I think the answer to that question is a resounding “Yes”.
EU vote will cast ripples for years
If ever there was a case of being hoist upon one’s own petard, Mrs May’s Pyrrhic victory in the election in just that.
Perhaps her desire to strengthen her own hand in the dealings with the master Machiavellians at the EU might have been legitimate.
But to the man on the Clapham Omnibus, perhaps it smacked too much of arrogance.
Perhaps the biggest question facing Britain now is where does any stability actually lie? In an isolated UK which might face price rises and struggle to sell its goods and services – or as part of a dubious continental club which, to the outside observer, holds all the fascination of a snake pit.
Against a background of terrorism, a spiralling national debt, weakening armed and police forces, an over-stressed NHS, cash- strapped town halls and a metamorphosing press, and with the effects of Brexit yet to kick in, whither ‘this sceptred isle’ now, loved much by Shakespeare and Churchill?
As wise as it seemed at the time, Mr Cameron’s Euro referendum – another non-necessity – could be the stone in the political pond which will cast ripples for years.
Serious message of nude bike ride
When I told my Sunday club-run companions that I’d been to the World Naked Bike Ride in Manchester, they were so busy laughing that they weren’t for listening to the serious bit about it.
Not even when I showed them a photograph of a Ford Fiesta which had been completely separated from
its rear axle, springs and wheels.
It had swerved across the road and hit a lamp post 100 yards in front of me. An added incentive to support the WNBR!
Organisers said the WNBR is a fun way to show cycling is inclusive, while also highlighting cyclists’ fragility and that “when a cyclist is hit by a vehicle, they have little protection from the impact and might as well be naked”.
My reason for going was to promote RoadPeace, the national charity for road crash victims.
I became a member when I was hit from behind by a negligent driver – I know more than most how vulnerable cyclists are.