U.S. Markets closed

Boris Johnson’s behaviour in Paris was a masterclass in arrogance

Reuters

When looking at the photo of Boris Johnson with his feet up on the Elysee Palace furniture, I was seeing a product from one element of Britain’s education system. The one that develops national leaders who will represent the country and present an image to the world.

All those years of prep school, Eton and Oxford have clearly paid off because he now thinks he knows how to behave when visiting an important international figure in a significant public building.

Is Macron pointing to the floor and saying that in France it is more a la mode to place the foot on the floor? If so, then he is being studiously ignored.

It just typifies an arrogant attitude to other countries and suggests that we will get an appropriate response when we want something from them.

John Daines
Cheshire

If a visitor, who I had never met before, came into my house and slouched in a proffered seat and put his foot on my coffee table I would be outraged. How is it possible that our prime minister – a man that represents my country – thinks this is acceptable behaviour?

Peter Coleman
Kent

The best we can hope for post-Brexit is literal rubbish

Given the regular predictions of a “glorious future” after we leave the EU, with or without a deal, have we not, at long last, just witnessed a very real benefit that should be shouted from every rooftop?

Thanks to Colin Drury’s article today, it is patently clear that great employment opportunities will soon be available in the north of the country. If we crash out we shall be able to reopen landfill sites with the resultant jobs to handle burying the rubbish from London and the home counties.

We shall also need more lorry drivers to drive the trucks carrying such refuse, and more inspectors making sure that regulations are followed.

What is there not to applaud in this big step forward for the people of this green and pleasant land? Apart from being buried in rubbish, that is.

Robert Boston
Kent

Some foreign intervention is just what the UK needs right now

We are in such a pickle over Brexit that it’s time for some lateral thinking. It seems no one can currently command sufficient support as a possible caretaker leader. Perhaps we are looking in the wrong places and what we really need is not a leader but a mediator or arbitrator. Who could that be?

The problem is that everyone considered so far has an entrenched view and a clear stake in the outcome. So why don’t we consider a complete outsider?

One obvious contender could be Barack Obama, but although he has no major stake in the outcome he has expressed a preference so perhaps he would be ruled out. But a senior figure from another country might be found who could drive the debate to a widely acceptable conclusion, which is what any good chairperson does. And a woman would likely prove more successful at negotiating the predominantly male ideologies and egos at play.

No doubt there would be howls of outrage at the idea of trusting a foreigner to resolve our dilemma, but if we can trust a company in Dubai to manage our visa system, why should that be a problem?

David Buckton
Cambridge

Stop criticising NHS food – hospitals are not restaurants

With the recent announcement of a government review into NHS hospital food, I find myself questioning the importance of said investigation. Upon looking at the comments of various news outlets reporting the story, members of the public are happy with the decision, yet quick to announce their negative experiences.

Posting pictures of their lukewarm casserole or overbaked cake, many are willing to voice their concerns, sometimes to a vicious degree. However, I think people are forgetting that the NHS is a free healthcare service for all. Stretched for resources as it is, it is not going to be perfect when it is free.

I am 19 years old. When I was in hospital for an operation I had food which was cold, but I did not complain. Hospitals are not restaurants providing food worthy of a review. Degrading this precious healthcare system is unacceptable, the staff members work hard enough. If only the general public could refrain for adding their two pennies’ worth on this issue.

Seth Dellow
Somerset

We have all the evidence we need to declare a climate emergency

When campaigning recently for the Vale of Glamorgan Council to declare a “climate emergency”, I was asked many times what a climate emergency is.

Well, the images of the Amazon and Siberian forests burning is probably the most poignant reply. Add to that, the melting of the Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets and the record temperatures taking place on a monthly basis and we have the evidence needed for us as a society to urgently change our ways.

The choices we make as individuals can have a global impact – whether it’s eating less meat, conserving energy or refusing plastic packaging.

Sadly many of our politicians seem deafeningly silent on climate breakdown and the extinction of our natural world. Please can I make an urgent plea to all readers to bombard our elected representatives with the emails, texts and letters needed for them to wake up and smell the burning forests.

Rob Curtis
Vale of Glamorgan