In your report (Falling living standards and rising crime see extremist parties gain ground, 2 May), you label the socialist left and the racist right in Greece with the same term “extremist”. This is an absurd slur. The three main left parties have 40% support in opinion polls (This Sunday could be the start of a European spring, 2 May) against less than 5% for the racist right, on the basis of defending jobs, incomes and public services against the claims of bankers and tax-avoiding business and the rich – entirely reasonable to Guardian readers. On the other hand, the two traditional ruling parties, Pasok and New Democracy, have engineered a 25-50%-plus cut in wages and pensions, 50% youth unemployment and the descent of the majority into poverty. How marvellously moderate, responsible and rational!
• François Hollande, the socialist candidate in the French presidential election, is apparently dull and normal. But he’s quoted as saying, “My real adversary has no name, no face, no party; it will never be a candidate, even though it governs. It is the world of finance (Report, 21 April).” Do you think we could have a look on this side of the Channel and find, in the dusty lumber-room where we long ago locked away our ideals, a dull, normal politician capable of speaking truth unto power with such courage and clarity?
Professor Glyn Turton
Long Preston, North Yorkshire
• You seem to have given up on Scotland. There is no actual coverage of the Scottish local elections over the four-plus pages on English and London elections (3 May). You also add insult to injury by completely chopping off Scotland on the map on page 13.
Director, Atmos Consulting, Inverness
Penny Stock Picks