News that the government at Westminster is leaning heavily on its colleagues in Scotland to back off from giving properly funded long-term care is not only a disgrace for the people of Scotland and its decisionmaking process, but raises the issue of whether you can on the one hand give parts of the UK self-government and then hit those parts when you do not like their decisions.

Democracy, if it is to work and be respected, has to recognise a broad church of opinion and desires, and prime minister Tony Blair would do well to understand that in the end the people of Scotland and Wales wanted devolution, have it and like it - and he had better get used to it.

Sooner or later the regions of England will go the same way, and power from London will have to shift. As for long-term care, it is right, appropriate and humane for those who need it.

They have after all paid for it in their happier years.

County Councillor Geoffrey Heathcock Health spokesman Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats