Interfering Government making life unbearable

From: Janet Berry, Hambleton, Selby, North Yorkshire. THE latest decision by this inept Government (Yorkshire Post, June 27) to introduce a law to persuade employers to engage black or ethnic people over white, women over men and stop ageism beggars belief.

It is absolutely essential for small businesses to employ the best candidate available regardless of colour, sex or age.

The Government interferes with every aspect of our life

and common sense must prevail.

We have a friend who has a tree surgery business. Must he now employ an elderly black woman to climb trees? Absolutely ludicrous.

Affirmative action is forced in South Africa and standards declined rapidly. Take my daughter in-laws,for example. Her father-in-law was a Professor of Biology and left South Africa because he could not cope with plummeting standards.

Her brother-in-law was a detective and had a black person promoted over him with few qualifications. It just does not work.

Gordon Brown taxes us unmercifully, 20-40 per cent on everything we earn, 17.5 per cent on everything we buy, 65 pence on every litre of petrol – far more than other countries – and then inheritance tax when we die.

Where does all this money go? This, with all these petty laws and regulations, together with all the extra civil servants needed to enforce them, is making life unbearable.

Soldiers say thanks for a warm welcome home

From: Lieutenant Colonel SJ Downey, 2nd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment.

AS you will be aware, the 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (Green Howards) has just concluded a week of Welcome Parades, following its recent tour of Afghanistan.

Whether it was in Middlesbrough, Redcar, Scarborough, Richmond, Harrogate or Bridlington, the support of the people, the local councils, and the regional Press has been absolutely superb.

Operating in Afghanistan clearly has its challenges, but it makes a huge difference when the soldiers enjoy the support of those at home.

The interest and warmth that the Battalion has been privileged to experience has been touching and much appreciated – the soldiers who returned to their barracks at the end of the parades felt two foot taller.

Dressing the part for a great day out

From: D Linley, Westfield Lane, South Milford, near Leeds.

HAS Ms Deborah Goodall (Yorkshire Post, June 21) totally lost it?

I have been going to the Yorkshire Show for more than 40 years, more on than off. The Yorkshire Show is also a day out for a lot of farm workers, and in all my years in going, I have never seen an untidy person there yet.

Some of the men, who are looking after their stock and staying there, are still not untidy. There are not many ordinary people who wish to go in the members' part.

The reason people dress in jeans, trainers, etc is because it is a day out with a lot of walking and they want to be comfortable.

In my 40 years of going, some with farmers, we have never gone into the members' area. I think that to see sheep, cows, pigs and goats, you are being a bit hard on most of the people who go for a day out.Labour's by-election disgrace

From: Ross Bennett, Hillcrest, Monk Fryston, West Yorkshire.

I AM appalled that the Government will not field a candidate in the upcoming Haltemprice and Howden by-election.

They say there is popular support for their position, but won't debate it. They deny their own supporters the opportunity to vote for them.

Basically, Labour voters in the area are being abandoned. They are being told: "We don't care about your votes. We know we can't win, so won't even stand up for you."

We look at Zimbabwe and rightly condemn Mugabe for denying his people a proper election. We are supposed to be so different here – are we?

Hang your head in shame, Gordon Brown.

From: Mark Dooley, Lowfield Crescent, Silsden, West Yorkshire.

THAT David Davis could be criticised for breaking ranks and making a principled stand on issues which are central to the very nature of our democracy reflects more badly on those who seek to question his actions than on himself.

To have the courage to follow through a belief in one's convictions, at the risk of sacrificing one's career, is something which should be applauded.

David Davis deserves our active support; unless we have so taken for granted the freedoms which have evolved over centuries that we no longer recognise them.

If his actions prick the consciences of other politicians and re-awaken an interest in politics by the electorate, the country will benefit as

a result.

From: Astrid White, Horbury, Wakefield

THE Haltemprice by-election is producing copy worthy of PG Wodehouse.

However, Mr Ronnie Carroll's sidekick, George Weiss, would appear to have ruined any chance, however remote, of his candidate achieving anything other than the irony vote.

His crass and cruel comment about the residents of a Cottingham care home being unable to remember who they are prompts the question: "Who is Mr Ronnie Carroll?"

Building a community

From: Paul Emsley, Hellifield, North Yorkshire.

A RECENT interview by Caroline Flint, the Housing Minister, proved that she also doesn't have a solution to the public transport and employment requirements of eco-towns, located out in the middle of the countryside.

Houses are easy to build. To provide the supporting infrastructure and to develop the community will take skills that governments will find harder to create.

And what about energy efficiency? The ability of local planning authorities to manage builders and developers, to deliver the requirements of the "carbon neutral" home are, I fear, beyond many. Some can't even measure 100mm (four inches) of insulation in the loft.

With the proposals to free up planning approvals and to reduce the costs of "affordable" housing, these problems will increase.

Protect our troops

From: David Quarrie, Lynden Way, Acomb, York.

YET more British military personnel killed in Afghanistan while travelling in totally unsuitable vehicles, namely the Snatch Land


Our Government has known for years that these very weak, lightly armoured troop carriers are useless against roadside booby traps and landmines.

Yet when our part-time Minister of Defence, Des Browne, is questioned about them, he answers: "We have to strike a balance between suitability and having an aggressive looking vehicle that might antagonise the local population."

If I had not heard these words, I could not really believe that even New Labour would utter such tripe.

What does it matter what the local population think? Our superb troops are at even more risk than is necessary. The sooner our magnificent soldiers, airmen and naval personnel are brought back from Iraq and Afghanistan, and Bosnia, and various parts of Africa, the better.

Managing Ilkley Moor for the benefit of all

From: JG Grice, The Close, Durkar, Wakefield.

I READ the letter from the anti-shooting lady (Yorkshire Post, June 25) with a certain amount of despair that someone who professes to walk the moor on a regular basis lacks any knowledge of the management of her surroundings.

This lady seems to get upset that predators may have to be controlled for the sake of the grouse. What about other ground-nesting birds that will benefit?

She talks about natural balance. Does she think crows, magpies, foxes, stoats and weasels, plus birds of prey, have any notion what that means?

Unmolested, they will clean an area out and then move on.

On a properly-managed moor, all wildlife benefits, and I believe it is an insult to the keeping and shooting fraternity to say they do not care. They face the practicalities of looking after the moor, they are not there just to wander about and admire the scenery!

As for the grouse shooting, the season starts on August 12 and ends on December 10, approximately 17 weeks excluding Sundays. I do not know the shooting rights at Ilkley, but if the moor is shot over there twice a week, it works out at approx one month in 12.

Me thinks the lady doth complain too much.

Supporting the workers

From: Ken Holmes, Cliffe Common, Selby, York.

IF Gordon Brown and his moonies don't quickly come into the real world, we are about to lose three human species; farmers, coalminers and fishermen.

All Gordon Brown and his Cabinet think of preserving are themselves, foxes, badgers, bats and great crested newts and to hell with the ones who will be required to preserve us all.

All the same in Africa

From: Arthur Quarmby, Holme, Holmfirth.

ROGER Dobson's suggestion that an SAS squad (Yorkshire Post, June 26) should be sent to assasinate Robert Mugabe is stupid – what chance of a successor being any different?

Look at Africa; tribal dictatorship is their natural way of government. Even South Africa – potentially one of the richest countries in the world – is heading that way.

Southern comfort

From: Tim Hunter, Farfield Avenue, Knaresborough.

I AM sure that following the Government's report on last summer's flooding, some of the recommended improvements to the infrastructure will be implemented. At least, in the South, perhaps.

In the North, they will probably just provide us with free swimming lessons.

In search of the truth

From: Terry Duncan, Greame Road, Bridlington.

MAKING her swan song speech, Wendy Alexander continues to deceive the voters of Scotland.

It was not, according to my memory, the Scottish National Party which exposed her illegal contribution of cash, but it was a national newspaper.

Maybe, she will have the guts to tell the truth and not tell

lies – as seems to be the edict these days within the UK

Labour Party.

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