National Debt Lies

How is it so many politicians, from PM and Chancellor to Secretaries of State, either do not understand international, national, and government finance systems, or they deliberately choose to lie about them?

The best example is the repetition of ‘spending taxpayers money’ when in fact there is no such thing, since government’s ownership of the Royal Mint and the Bank of England means that it creates its own money whenever it wants. Classic examples being rescuing the banks with hundreds of billions in 2008 when threatened with US-led collapse.

These special big sums of money creation came from either build-up of funds from selling government bonds or by so-called Quantitative Easing when the B of E actually created increased money supply by buying-up big amounts of government bonds itself. All such ‘creations’ do not have to be repaid like you and I would have to if we took-on big overdrafts or loans ; so government finance is never like our household budgets as Thatcher, and now Sunak-Hunt, try to deceive us into believing. Similarly ‘national debt’ is never bad in itself and can be essential for capital development as in post-war days.

Lies are repeated, not only telling us that raising interest rates must be used to control inflation, but also saying that it was Tories that brought down inflation. One thing is certain in capitalism: for all the trillions of big money wheeling-and-dealing going-on in banking, investment, currency, hedge-funds, energy, food, derivatives, commodities, gold-silver-diamonds, stocks and shares, it always rewards capital at the expense of LABOUR, us who HAVE to work to live.

Will Sunak-Hunt’s budget, or Starmer-Reeves’ for that matter, reverse this dominant, now hard right-wing economics to a new socialist public services and public well-being era ? I doubt only Greens’ wealth, financial transactions, resources, carbon-control, income and Council taxes, have any chance of it AND HALTING CLIMATE CHANGE EXTINCTION!

Alan Debenham

74 horses killed

In a few days time, the Cheltenham Festival kicks off, and thousands of spectators will watch as race horses are whipped to the finish-line.

What many still deem a ‘harmless flutter’ is in fact quite the opposite. It may be shocking for readers to know that 74 horses have been killed at Cheltenham Festival since March 2000, including last year, when Malinello tragically fell, dying later from his injuries.

Animal Aid has published evidence that jump racing kills approximately 1 in 58 race horses each year, not to mention the horses who die in training and suffer traumatic injuries. It is dystopian that this brutal excuse for a sport is still classed as entertainment in 2024.

We encourage the public to boycott the Cheltenham Festival and never bet money on a race horse.

Nina Copleston-Hawkens, Animal Aid

HMS Wellington

Dear Editor,

Your photograph of HMS Wellington immediately seized my attention. My immediate thought, without first reading the accompanying article, was: "That is a sloop-class warship." For me, this photograph evoked fond memories of my late father who, in 1942, fiddled his birth certificate in order to sign up to fight in the war, aged 17 years; three years of low-paid toil in the local textile factory enough to drive that choice. He joined the Royal Navy, assembled with recruits in Plymouth, and was posted to Liverpool to serve on HMS Starling (U66 would you believe!), a Black Swan class sloop under the command of Captain F.J."Johnnie" Walker. In later years he would happily talk about those long, freezing cold excursions into the North Atlantic hunting U-boats, and one especially arduous convoy mission to Russia and the coldest of unfriendly welcomes from the Russian military on the safe arrival of the convoy, (during which his ship sank two U-boats).  But he was not aware of the significance of the role played by Starling and the other Black Swan class sloops of the squadron under the command of Capt. Walker, who implemented a U-boat hunting strategy which was central in turning the tide against the U-boat threat. A monument to his inspired leadership stands at the Pierhead, Liverpool, commemorating a man who in July 1944 died of a cerebral thrombosis, undoubtedly caused by exhaustion. Computers and "Google search" now permit the curious to research the exploits, privations, and sacrifices of sailors, both Merchant Navy and RN, across that battle, the succesful outcome of which was of such importance to Britain's wartime survival. But for those of us who prefer to read from books, rather than a computer screen, and who would like to know more of what these gallant warships got up to, then a copy of "The Fighting Captain" by Alan Burn, will take you on a bare-knuckle ride through those storm-tossed seas. It was that book which informed me why my father would, from time to time, chant for no particular reason: "Tan tivvy, Tan tivvy, A-Hunting We Will Go."

Grahame Woodward