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Royal_mail_25.15pm Parliament: Lord de Mauley open to partial privatisation of the Royal Mail

4pm Parliament: Working Time opt-out under threat from European Parliament

3.30pm Greg Hands MP on CentreRight: Harriet Harman’s "we need debt to rise" gaffe

1pm Parliament: John Bowis gives lukewarm welcome to EU climate and energy package

12.30pm ToryDiary: Tory lead at 4% in MORI poll

Picture_4_3 Noon: Live blog of PMQs

11am ToryDiary: The Woolies moment is coming… and then the ‘It hasn’t worked’ moment

10am Parliament: Andrew Lansley criticises the government for misusing hospitals’ knife wounds data

ToryDiary: David Cameron is giving too many speeches

David Cameron MP on Platform: The state must not disown asylum seekers

Parliament: Tory MPs Peter Luff and Hugo Swire call for reinstatement of the Today programme’s Ed Stourton

Local government: Yes we can. St Edmundsbury freezes Council Tax.

Helpusfind470 Seats and candidates: A search for one hundred peers

Alex Deane on CentreRight: A more flexible (and harsher) drivers’ licensing scheme

WATCH: Police ‘to drop’ investigation into Damian Green

Tories slip below 40% in ConHome poll of pollsYesterday evening’s ToryDiary

Gordon Brown is in IraqDaily Mail (It will be Hague V Harman at today’s PMQs)

Daily Mail warns Cameron against gesture politics… on welfare reform

"In the past, this paper has warmly supported Mr Cameron’s pledge to swing the balance of the tax-and-benefits system in favour of couples who stay together. But can he explain how this sits with his new insistence that single parents are ‘especially’ in need of our help? At best, the Tory leader is sending out mixed signals. At worst, he is indulging in the politics of meaningless gestures." – Daily Mail leader

[Tory leader denounces welfare plans as ‘macho posturing exercise’ – Independent]

The Financial Times warns Cameron against gesture politics… on bashing bankers

"Against a background of headlines about an alleged $50bn fraud, it is unhelpful for the Tory leader’s speech to conflate poor decisions and possible criminal behaviour. There is a clear distinction, which his speech failed to recognise consistently. Those who may have broken the law should face proceedings. But this is a world away from fuelling the populist mood that favours jail for all bankers involved in bad decision-making." – FT leader

[Nine reasons to go and hug a hedgie  – FT]

The coming economic pain

"Another sharp rise in unemployment to be announced today will be followed by a "bloodbath" of job cuts in the new year, ministers fear." – Independent

"Unemployment is likely to rise above 3 million in the current recession, the Bank of England’s labour market expert, David Blanchflower, warns today." – Guardian

"How low can we go in sterling slump?" – Dan Lewis in the Yorkshire Post

Damian Green’s arrest was "heavy-handed" says police

Greendamianredtie "Police are preparing to drop their inquiry into the Tory immigration spokesman Damian Green after a highly critical independent report. The head of British Transport Police, Ian Johnston, is believed to have suggested the Met’s conduct in the MP’s arrest was unnecessarily heavy-handed." – Daily Mail

Ally of Welsh Tory leader tried to bury story of taxpayer-funded iPodWestern Mail

Gordon Brown faces "huge" Labour revolt against plans to sell 25% of Royal Mail to a foreign competitorFT | The Herald

SNP refuses to cut overpaid pensionsScotsman

A key vote in the European Parliament later could see an end to Britain’s opt-out of European laws limiting the working week to 48 hoursBBC | Martin Callanan MEP’s view

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17 comments for: Wednesday 17th December 2008

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