Public services are trumped by Trident

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Travelling across Berwickshire earlier this month, I was struck once again by the awfulness of our infrastructure.

Most roads, whether notionally A or B class, are pot-holed, with crumbling edges, littered verges and illegible road markings. Truly subThird World.

The much-vaunted hordes of overseas visitors may well materialise in 2014 – but I doubt many will return once the true dreadfulness of travelling in Scotland has been experienced.

As the disintegration of public services really takes hold – the removal of green waste collections and apparent abandonment of recycling targets being the latest examples – it is interesting to ponder the bizarre priorities seemingly endorsed by those lining up to vote No in September.

Trident replacement will cost £100billion over a notional 10 years. In reality, it will be massively behind schedule and overspent on budget – witness the £600million overspend announced very quietly recently on warships. This useless piece of nuclear junk will protect us from some unknown and probably non-existent enemy, and make the world a more dangerous place into the bargain.

The idea of David Cameron’s Etonian successors with their fingers on the button is not a comforting one. But retiring MPs will no doubt be lining up for all those lucrative non-executive directorships in defence and security companies who are even now rubbing their hands at the prospect of getting their corporate snouts in the bottomless trough of defence spending.

Meanwhile, Scottish Borders Council tries to save £29million over five years, or one three-thousandth of the cost of replacing Trident.

Presumably, No voters are content with such priorities as Trident is such a beloved policy of the Westminster junta.

Richard West

Inch Park