Readers' letters - May 18
Tories to blame for cuts
I wonder if our MP Nigel Evans has a view on the proposed cuts to Lancashire County Council services, including libraries that are now out to consultation, or perhaps he is as clueless as the Prime Minister about the impact that the Tory policies are having on our cherished public services and the lives of ordinary people.
David Cameron famously wrote to the leader of (Conservative) Oxfordshire Council last September complaining how “disappointed” he was by the council’s proposals “to make significant cuts to frontline services – from elderly day centres to libraries to museums”.
He received a lengthy reply, politely explaining that the council has had to save hundreds of millions of pounds whilst taking on extra responsibilities and dealing with an increase in the elderly population, and that there was nothing left to cut without reducing social care, child protection and other core services.
Let’s not pretend that this isn’t precisely the issue faced by Lancashire County Council and indeed others up and down the country as they struggle to deal with massive year-on-year cuts to funding from central government.
The Government justifies its unwarranted austerity programme on the grounds of responsibility – people must take responsibility for their own lives, rather than relying on the state, therefore local authorities must take responsibility for their spending.
But David Cameron clearly takes no responsibility for his own policies and the havoc they are wreaking on vital public services, like our libraries, children’s centres, museums and other youth services.
The Government has made very clear choices about protecting the incomes of the better off (coincidently those most likely to vote Tory) whilst slashing incomes for the less well-off and decimating the services on which the latter most depend.
I’d be interested to know what Mr Evan’s opinion is on the matter and what action he is taking to support the communities that he represents on this issue.
‘Cuts are social vandalism’
Lancashire County Council is legally obliged to provide a “comprehensive and efficient library service” according to the 1964 Public Libraries and Museums Act.
By fulfilling this legal requirement, LCC is not doing the people of Lancashire a favour. The law demands it be done and, if it is not done, the law should be brought to bear. If the Government of this country was anything other than it is, it would intervene to protect our rights in this area.
The library closure proposals put forward by LCC are an attack on working class intellectualism, on the development of knowledge, on comprehension and the evolution of logic, especially in the young. This is the work of traitors, not to mention the social vandalism of closing children’s centres, adult disability centres, youth offending teams and the rest. Keir Hardie must be spinning in his grave. How long I wonder before we see books burned in the streets, with LCC councillors carrying those books deemed unnecessary out to the bonfire?
Tony Cullen, Coppull
It’s not rock and roll to miss vote
The referendum takes place on June 23, right in the middle of the Glastonbury Festival. This means many students may miss out on a vote that will affect them more than any other group.
They should be contacted and told they need to get a postal vote, then they can vote prior to going to Glastonbury. They need to make sure they are registered by Tuesday, June 7, and that they have been put on the postal vote list. It is not rock and roll to miss the vote to listen to music.
Terry Bennett via email
Let’s leave the Nazis out of it
I have long regarded Boris Johnson as a showman and a jingoist.
To equate Hitler’s plans to subjugate Europe by violence and murder with the EU is derisory and utterly disgraceful.
Not for the first time does he display an abysmal ignorance of history.
His suitability for high political office is at best questionable.
Nostalgia is a wonderful place to retire behind but it is a poor substitute for statesmanship and realism.
Of course, the real and transparent aim of Boris is to spread alarm.
It is a very silly alarm bell that he is ringing.
The arguments over the EU are , as predicted, becoming more and more absurd by the day.
Shrill point scoring now has taken over genuine debate.
It will get worse.
What the public demands before voting are facts and sober analysis, not fantasy.
Unfortunately, as I have argued before, facts are what is missing. On Referendum day, voters will be entering a very dark room blindfolded.
In the meantime, let’s leave Hitler and the Nazis out of
Dr Barry Clayton via email
Aliens were no human beings
Zed Khan’s recent claim to have spotted a U.F.O. may be assured of one thing, if occupied, they would in no way have resembled human beings (LEP May 14).
If so, the first thing they would have done would be to dismiss the world’s population as primitive and inferior, stick a flag in the ground, then claimed the entire planet as their subjective colony.
Would this strike a chord with millions of present day inhabitants?
Denis Lee, Ashton
Don’t destroy our libraries
People would do well to reflect that no good EVER came from an administration that destroyed books.
The Codgers’ Poet aka