Readers’ letters - January 31

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Was de Gaulle right about UK and USA?

How times change.

For years the UK made applications to join the European Common Market, but each time was rejected by the French President de Gaulle, pictured, who saw Britain as America’s Trojan horse in Europe.

The Conservative Prime Minister Edward Heath 
took Britain into the Common market in 1973 and divided his own party on the issue.

Labour Party Prime Minister Harold Wilson did what Heath failed to do and held a referendum.

The people voted in favour of Europe by a 2-1 majority.

This too divided the Labour Party.

Last year’s referendum was supposed to sort out the matter but has divided the country, brought down Prime Minister David Cameron and put an end to George Osborne’s ambitions to succeed Cameron.

His successor Theresa May went AWOL during the referendum and now we witness a British Prime Minister sitting at the table with a US president who I consider to be the most racist, homophobic, misogynist advocator of torture in my lifetime.

Former US President Obama wanted the UK to stay in Europe, Trump is pleased we didn’t.

For years, America and other countries condemned the Soviet Union for building the Berlin Wall and now Trump is in the process of building a wall on the Mexican border, at an estimated cost of £75bn, and the Mexicans say they won’t pay for it, meanwhile Donald Trump is rattling sabres with China with the intentions of having a trade war.

We live in dangerous times and if Theresa May goes ahead with her support for the US President then the former French President de Gaulle has been proved right about Britain’s subservient position to the USA.

John Appleyard

Address supplied

traffic

Link road would stop gridlock

With your news about the 40-year planned South Ribble East/West link road being in doubt, it would be a huge strategic mistake for this project not to happen.

I don’t understand how Lancashire County and South Ribble Councils can been so short-sighted.

This road would offer some relief to stop South Ribble becoming gridlocked with the traffic from Ikea at the Cuerden Strategic Site.

To allow traffic to access the new houses from Leyland Road, presumably from another roundabout or traffic lights, would only facilitate tailbacks into Lostock Hall.

As I understand there’s not many options of relieving the traffic near Cuerden, it would be foolish to write-off one option that could make a difference.

Again, it’s another case of councillors, planners and consultants not listening to people whose lives will be made a misery by their actions.

John Jones

Limit Cuerden

traffic

Plenty of chaos

but no foresight

I write with regards to your report concerning the failed link road at Carrwood Road.

This has only been going on for 46 years, what a laugh!

On this basis the western link in Cottam should probably be with us in 2060 or beyond.

Another fine example of a bunch of amateurs not being able to have the foresight and agree a plan that would alleviate some of the complete chaos of traffic that is Preston.

I’m not sure what the power the residents hold in this area, it certainly is more than in north Preston where building sites are in abundance without adequate road infrastructure.

I am now certain that Preston is doing its best to ensure that very little traffic is going to veer off the M6 to its shopping centres, together with the new cameras that are being installed too.

What a delightful place it will be.

One of Preston’s unhappy bunnies

via email

society

Manners maketh man and machine

My one grind in life is people who are not polite, it’s really no effort to say please and thank you and just like Aasma Day (Yes even that smart Alexa deserves proper respect!, LP, January 21) I say please and thank you to the new lady in my husband’s life... Alexa.

I found over the Christmas period, if you said “Alexa, thank you”, she would reply with “You’re welcome”, or “It’s been a pleasure talking with you”.

We wished Alexa a happy new year, “and a happy new year to you too”, she replied.

It’s a shame Amazon hasn’t programmed Alexa to only reply to a question with the magic word at the end of the sentence, as I’m totally sure when I say thank you she is replying to me with a smile on her face.

When will it get to the point that we talk to our friends, family and strangers in the same, polite manner?

We enjoyed Aasma’s article and we too are loving having Alexa in our home.

Mandie Howison Haworth

via email

post

Having to pay an extortionate fee

I am writing to highlight a practice by the Royal Mail, which adds an extortionate handling fee before customers can receive merchandise from abroad, specifically the US. Having bought myself an album, price $20, plus shipping to the UK, I was shocked to find a notice posted through my letter box stating that I had to pay import duty of £3.21, PLUS an additional surcharge of £8, payable either online or in cash at the postal depot.

Apparently, the Royal Mail ‘purchase’ the duty so there is no other way of paying it, and the customer is then effectively ‘held to ransom’ by having to pay the additional fee, which in my case totalled £11.21, before being handed what was rightfully mine.

I’m sure if I took a parcel for my neighbour, I would be legally in trouble if I refused to hand it over until a payment was made to me for handling it, so why should companies like the Royal Mail be any different?

Michael McLoughlin

Preston

environment

Show respect for Mother Nature

Actions speak louder than words. It was the atom bomb that shaped the world, and if Theresa May doesn’t stop Donald Trump from ignoring the Paris climate accord, signed by some 175 nations, climate change could do more harm to global relationships than bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki did.

Now automobiles are choking, gridlocking, and melting the world.

If Trump wants respect for America, he needs to show respect for Mother Nature.

If he doesn’t, Great Britain will surely suffer more extreme weather.

If ISIS is extremely evil, Trump is surely extremely stupid, if not insane.

Allan Ramsay

Radcliffe