IN response to the attacks on the
Labour Party from Brian Otridge and
Paddy Keenan, and other letters from
UKIP supporters, I find it difficult to
follow their arguments.

Our exports run at £150m a year, yes.
But they are only that high because of
the trade agreements and advantages
we have by being members of the EU.
Our imports are £200m, agreed.
However, this is somewhat less than
£10m per member state, so, on average,
membership of the EU is considerably
more advantageous to Britain.
Our trade balance with the rest of
the world also depends on our access
to EU markets.

Foreign employers,
such as Nissan, have already said that
they have built factories in the UK to
sell to Europe and would seriously consider
leaving if Britain were no longer
a member.

On a different tack, is Mr Keenan
really saying that the NHS, state
education and private pensions are
really the source of Britain’s difficulties?

The first two at least are the
greatest achievements in the post-war
years and are Labour policies.
Finally, welfare dependency, the
clarion call of the far right. It is a fact
that the majority of welfare payments
are made to people who are in work! It
is an indictment of the current
Government, and those other parties
who moan about welfare dependency,
that people who work hard for a living
still need to have their incomes supported
by such benefits as tax credits
and housing benefit just to manage to
survive from day to day.
Labour introduced the minimum
wage, to the dismay of these other

Now we are asking for a living wage,
to reduce welfare dependency and this
is causing another outcry.

Alan Cotter
Andover Labour Party
The Drove