Farce on the steps of St Paul’s

From: David Warnes, Maple Walk, Brandesburton, Driffield, East Yorkshire.

THE occupation of the precincts of St Paul’s Cathedral is nothing short of a Whitehall farce.

On the one hand we have a tented bunch of masked misfits and layabouts who, their squawking harpie of a spokesperson tells us, have issues with something called capitalism and no doubt anything else they can dream up as an issue while lying snugly at home in bed.

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On the other hand we have a conclave of puzzled and perplexed Nimmoesque Prelates who were an obvious sitting target for the “rentatent” brigade, wondering just how to rid themselves of this circus which landed unannounced at their altar. What they all ask would Jesus have said about all this?

In His infinite wisdom he said many things, one of which was “Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s and unto God that which is God’s”.

Perhaps then the Church should concentrate less on the Temporal and more on the Spiritual, and the mob should disperse until they find something really worthwhile to protest about, perhaps setting up camp outside a mosque in Damascus – after all, didn’t St Paul find something really worth while on his way there?

Buy local and buy early

From: SC Harrison, Ashfield, Wetherby.

AT this time of the year, Christmas presents occupy our minds and so does their cost, especially in the third quarter of the financial year, followed by the deadliest quarter, January to March, when heating and other bills spiral.

More people are buying their presents on the internet because they are cheaper. However, the problems with deliveries become highlighted at this time of the year, coupled with after-sales service issues such as missing parts, broken this and that, wrong sizes and colour.

Surely, then, it is sensible to buy from the local small shopkeeper or market stall holder. Why not order from him early?

So, put the butcher, baker, candlestick-maker, stationer or cycle shop owner on your list for purchases pre-Christmas?

In the long run, convenience could save you money and anxiety. From the trader’s point of view, you could save his business!

No shortcut to real recovery

From: Nigel Boddy, Fife Road, Darlington

MANY of the tabloid newspapers are carrying headlines that the housing market has “bounced back”. I am not sure that is true. Those of us who own our homes of course secretly wish they are right. But when you read the detail in the articles behind the headlines the truth is not so simple all around Britain. Some regions are up while others are down. Some types of property are up while apartments seems to be falling in price everywhere.

Britain needs to see more tourists. We need to export more if we are to see a recovery here. Increases in manufacturing output would solve our problems. Recycling scrap, exporting antiques, tweed, tartan and whisky can also play their part too.

We need to find exports particularly to China. We need to attract more Chinese tourists here to spend their money.

We must address our balance of trade problems especially with China or there will be no recovery, either in property prices or employment.

National police force needed

From: John Fisher, Menwith Hill, Harrogate.

THE decision for a proposed national police force for Scotland should give our government cause to review the state of our own outdated and fractured police structure.

The recent disclosure of the failure of five police officers to enter a travellers’ site to search a vehicle suspected of containing stolen items, despite being given a huge amount of public information and assistance, highlights the increased decline in law enforcement.

It now appears that some Chief Constables can use political correctness and health and safety to avoid a confrontation with in this case “travelers” and in other cases cases minority/ethnic groups.

What this country needs is a national police service which will be capable of enforcing laws with equal rigor throughout the entire country without the interference of politically-correct Chief Constables.

It would also improve our ability to tackle increasing national organised crime and a constant terrorist threat.

The saving in the procurement of equipment and administration alone could be used to but more officers in the public domain.

A national police force would appear to have a fair chance of being rolled out in Scotland but doubtful if it could succeed in England.