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Mammon has won

It is possible that present British citizens are better educated than their grandparents, but the scope of their intelligence has been diverted by a wholly dishonest and bigoted Media, and politics twisted from ideals, by some particular unprincipled, ambitious celebrity personalities. The consequence is that present adults think at the level of previous children, limited to superficial, pragmatic thinking about clever electronic devices, ignoring more menacing nuclear toys of megalomaniacs. Such contemplation, the destiny of humankind, is wholly beyond them.

Ever since babyhood, their minds have been assailed by self-centred advertising, to possess more things, but ‘Retail Therapy‘ will never cure the sickness from which they now suffer. A whole generation of adults is hysterical about hitting or kicking some balls about.

Populism, the victory of ignorance over education, is proudly rampant, from the death of the News of the World, now paraded by other gutter media, and further transferred into the brain of every obnoxious yob who uses Facebook or Twitter, to regurgitate and spread that same abuse of vulnerable targets.

Once, the BBC was the envy of the world, as a beacon of international Truth, but the very concept of ‘The Truth’ has been crippled by the operation of present economics, the ‘haves’ who cheat the ‘have nots’ of the fruits of the Earth, and fail to understand how that degrades themselves, most venal of all, because they are responsible for this economy, devoid of regulation and any ethical principles.

This is the triumph of Mammon, the love and worship of the power of money, the surrender of your mind to that perspective. This universe deserves better humans.

C N Westerman, Brynna, Mid Glamorgan

Warms the cockles

What a lovely, heartwarming story to start the Christmas season.

We refer to the SA headlines of 24th December ‘Joy to the the World’ in which you reported the Muslim community of Swindon raised £2,000 in eight days to take the amount needed to buy special incubators for the special care baby unit at the GWH.

We hope the people who write to the SA letters page who insult and snipe at the Muslim community will now write to congratulate them on their fabulous work.

Mark and Martin Webb, Old Town, Swindon

Prison is a deterrent

Justin Tomlinson suggests that a new law which increases the punishment tariff available to the judiciary will help reduce the number of attacks made on police officers. I fear he is misguided.

Attacks made on police officers generally fall into three categories. The deliberate, planned and targeted attack; the drunken lunge and the angry, red mist response to any form of authority. None of which are in any way acceptable.

However, while the new law doubles the possible maximum sentence from 6 to 12 months it should be borne in mind that magistrates and judges had not been minded to impose the previous maximum and there is no evidence that the new law will result in any significant change. What is needed is a change in the attitude of the judiciary where the starting point should always be - If you assault an emergency worker you go to prison.

Now that would be a real deterrent.

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Scientific argument

Rowland Pantling writes to complain that a school student is concerned about global warming.

It is somewhat worrying that an adult (I presume Rowland is one) should be so confused about the scientific consensus on climate change.

Rowland thinks the BBC is the source of climate change science. It isn’t, indeed it is more likely to present warnings of scientists toned down for reasons of diplomacy. He asks, has the student’s school taught the “benign” role of carbon dioxide in nature? Yes the school will invariably have taught about, for example, the role of the gas in photosynthesis and respiration. But what on Earth has this to do with CO2 as a gas with a particular role as a greenhouse gas, identified as long ago as 1896 by Arrhenius.

Maybe Rowland knows this but doesn’t think atmospheric CO2 is increasing. Maybe he doesn’t believe burning fossil fuels adds CO2 to the atmosphere. If so he is as clueless here as his demand that schools should stop teaching science.

Rowland’s arguments are like those sponsored by cigarette manufacturers when they deny the cancer connection. Action on climate change is urgent and shouldn’t be diverted by propaganda driven by the oil companies and their bought and paid for political supporters.

Peter Smith, Woodside Avenue, Swindon

Perfect pictures

May I thank you for publishing, and the members of the Camera Club for taking the wonderful pictures that we have enjoyed this year. Long may they continue.

Beryl Stanley

Balmoral Close, The Lawns, Swindon

It’s like a pantomime

Parliament returns this week with MPs focused on Brexit.

The Government’s “preparations” for no deal have hit new depths.

They awarded a £16m cross Channel shipping contract to a company with no ships, whose website refers to their “drivers delivering meals”, having being cut and pasted from a fast food company’s website. I know it is the pantomime season, but you could not make it up!

Frankly it would be hilarious were it not so serious.

This is the future of our country’s health, security and economy. It is obvious that Mrs May and Mr Corbyn are united in denying the British people the final say on that future.

MPs from all the mainstream British parties must now come together to defy both of them and get the People’s Vote that we need. It is the only truly democratic thing to do and the only real way out of this mess.

Let all of us decide whether our future lies with Mrs May’s deal, James Gray’s no deal, or the best deal, the one we have right now inside the European Union.

Cllr Dr Brian Mathew, Prospective Liberal Democrat MP for North Wiltshire

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