EU Summit: Spying row wrecks Cameron plan

CAMERON EU flag“The claims led to calls for talks on a new trade deal between the EU and US – a key plank of Mr Cameron’s plans for the UK to build a new relationship with Brussels – to be suspended. He was forced to resist calls from fellow EU leaders for new data protection rules that could cost British business hundreds of millions of pounds.” – Daily Express

  • NSA monitored calls of 35 world leaders – The Guardian
  • Europe should stop whining about America’s spies – Joseph Joffe, Financial Times
  • Merkel: The spies who love her – Nigel West, Daily Telegraph
  • Lib Dem MEPs vote to increase the EU budget – Daily Mail

Green taxes: Cameron plans to cut them…

“The Prime Minister, who was accused by Liberal Democrats of a “panicky U-turn” for his surprise announcement on Wednesday that he would “roll back” green taxes, has earmarked four levies on energy companies for abolition…A Conservative source also said that the taxpayer may be asked to meet some of the costs of two subsidies for renewable energy — the renewable obligation and feed-in tariff.” – The Times (£)

  • Red tape delays shale – The Sun

…As Clegg proposes to raise the money elsewhere

Curse of Clegg 2“Yesterday a defiant Mr Clegg said: “I’m certainly not going to accept simply scrapping a whole system of levies.” But he conceded bills had got so high that ministers had a duty to step in, admitting: “Something must be done.” He added: “We will find agreement, we will make an announcement between now and the autumn statement.” – The Sun

  • The power companies are not the bad guys – Jeremy Warner, Daily Telegraph
  • Hidden taxes clobber the poor hardest – Ross Clark, The Times (£)
  • If he wants to cut green taxes, Cameron should axe the flawed Carbon Price Floor – Will Straw, Daily Telegraph
  • Foreign aid can pay for cut in energy bills – Daily Mail Editorial
  • Lord Sugar rants at “Calamity Clegg” – Daily Express
  • Cable should resign over Royal Mail sell-off, says CWU Chief – The Independent
  • LibDem councillor and former Mayor who set off series of explosions in his neighbourhood is jailed for 18 years – Daily Mail

> Yesterday:

Fraser Nelson: Clegg’s schools speech. Fatuous. Gimmicky. Opportunist. And illiberal.

“The centrepiece of yesterday’s speech was a fatuous idea to convene a hit squad of good teachers who would lay down the law to bad ones…Mr Clegg’s speech embodies precisely the type of headline-grabbing political opportunism that schools need to be protected from. And yet he is renouncing liberalism just at the time when it is becoming popular again. Polls show rising frustration with the cost and effects of the welfare state, and that younger voters tend to see government as a menace.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Clegg faces legal threat over rules on teachers – The Times (£)
  • Teachers who taught Clegg would be barred under his rules – Daily Mail

Lord Baker: Not every child is as gifted as Gove, and Cameron is “not that interested in education, frankly”

BAKER Ken black and white“Michael Gove’s flagship policies are “entirely derived from his own educational experience”, Margaret Thatcher’s former education secretary has claimed. The Conservative peer Lord Baker said that Mr Gove – who has championed a controversial agenda including the free schools programme, exam reforms and changes to teachers’ pay and pensions – was pushing through plans that could fail children who did not have his natural advantages.” – The Independent

Fox warns of retreat over increased use of army reservists

“The former Defence Secretary said it would become more difficult to “recruit and retain” reservists as the economy recovered, while the attempt to double their ranks by 2018 would require the co-operation of employers. His intervention comes after serving and former officers warned that the Government might not be able to meet its ambitious reservists recruitment target. Ministers hope to increase the number of army reservists to 30,000 while cutting the regular Army by about 20,000 troops to 82,000.” – The Times (£)

  • MPs may launch inquiry over Britain’s culpability for deadly Camp Bastion attack – The Independent

> Today: Julian Brazier MP on Comment: Why having 30,000 trained reservists by 2018 is achievable

GM food controversy is over, says Paterson

PATERSON OWEN NW“Owen Paterson insisted genetically modified products should be cultivated and manufactured in Britain and said they would cut costs for hard-pressed shoppers. Mr Paterson, a Government cheerleader for the technology, which Britain has resisted, said consumers had accepted a move to allow shops to sell meat from animals raised on GM feed, suggesting public opposition had softened.” – Daily Mail

McLoughlin considering cut in East Coast main line first class seats

“Patrick McLoughlin, the Transport Secretary, said a revitalized east coat line would “reignite the old spirit of the railways”. He told The Telegraph that it would re-ignite the historic competition between the east and west coast routes up to Scotland. “Back then, rival operators competed aggressively to go on their trains to Scotland. The fight was on to gain the market,” Mr McLoughlin said. “Enormous amounts of engineering innovation came out of that competitive spirit and the pursuit of better journeys north of the border.” – Daily Telegraph

The Telegraph continues its interest in Westminster Hall debates involving Nick Boles

BOLES valley of death“Mr Boles, speaking at a Westminster Hall debate in Parliament, faced a major backlash from Tory MPs who warned the party was haemorrhaging votes after creating “planning anarchy” that would “destroy our open countryside”. But Mr Boles said the new targets for land supply for housing imposed on councils are too low, and said there are no longer enough brownfield sites to meet demand. Southern England and some northern towns face an intense “housing crisis” that has left children in overcrowded homes and two-thirds of first time buyers relying on help from wealthy parents, Mr Boles said.” – Daily Telegraph

Senior Tories to make Bercow bias complaint

“Leaders of the party’s 1922 Committee – the ‘men in grey suits’ – are expected to speak to Mr Bercow after his ‘appalling’ treatment of David Cameron this week. The Commons Speaker rebuked Mr Cameron at Prime Minister’s Question Time for describing Ed Miliband as a ‘conman’, saying the term was ‘unparliamentary’. He was also seen to smirk when the Prime Minister stood to speak early by mistake.” – Daily Mail

Families face fifth year of incomes falling behind inflation

Screen shot 2013-10-25 at 08.53.41“The experts behind the study said it would make for the longest period of declining living standards since they started collecting figures in 1984. The research highlights the problems for families trying to deal with stagnant incomes and soaring bills…The average pay rise for a private sector worker – 80 per cent of all employees – has been below retail price inflation ever since December 2009.” – Daily Mail

> Today: A day to acknowledge the good work of George Osborne

Patients “at risk in a quarter of hospitals”

“Shockingly, a number of the hospitals now marked out as risky were classified ‘safe’ as recently as earlier this year. Risk factors that have also been taken into consideration include poor safety measures, low staffing levels, lengthy waiting times, high levels of superbugs or very low levels of patient satisfaction.” – Daily Mail

  • NHS scrutiny – The Sun
  • New research claims that twice as many foreign visitors pay to use NHS as exploit free healthcare in Britain – The Independent

The Times: “The isolation of some Muslim communities is destructive both to them and to the cohesion of British society”

Screen shot 2013-10-25 at 08.54.45“The reason we choose to highlight this episode is that it appears to fit a disturbing pattern — not only in London but in Birmingham, Bradford and several other Northern cities and towns. Young men of Asian origin have, in effect, mounted vigilante patrols of “their” neighbourhoods. Women in short skirts, men assumed to be gay and revellers consuming alcohol have been abused, and in some cases assaulted, in recent months by young men claiming to be acting in defence of Islam.” – Times Editorial (£)

  • “Aung San Suu Kyi’s equivocal attitude towards the violence against Burma’s Muslim minority threatens to tarnish her reputation” – Daily Telegraph Editorial

Balls “will take Labour’s decision on HS2”

“The shadow chancellor, a known sceptic, believes the cash could be better spent in other areas, such as building homes. He has also warned there will be no “blank cheque” if costs keep soaring. The estimate was originally £34billion. A source said leader Ed Miliband had “effectively sub-contracted” the decision to Mr Balls. It also emerged yesterday that up to 60 Tories may vote against the project in a crunch Commons vote next week.” – The Sun

  • Mandelson: HS2 will ‘suck the life’ out of the country’s rail network – Daily Telegraph
  • Mary Creagh “doesn’t rule out” renationalising railways – Financial Times
  • Yvette Cooper promises new police standards authority – The Times (£)
  • Grangemouth future uncertain despite union climbdown – Financial Times
  • Blair: Pain, passion and empathy: what I’ve learned about peacemaking – The Guardian

News in Brief


  • Charlie Elphicke cricket club row – Daily Mail
  • Britain trumpets welcome to Chinese – Financial Times
  • Quarter of NHS trusts identified as high risk – Daily Express
  • The number of children who had sex change therapy treatment rose by 50 per cent last year – The Times (£)
  • Sophia Loren wins tax case after 40 years – The Guardian
  • 100mph storm to bring 48 hours of ‘utter hell’ – Daily Express
  • Prince Charles regards role of king as ‘prison’, aide claims – Daily Telegraph
  • The Queen with her three direct heirs – The Sun (£)


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