Islamism 1) Cameron: Respond to Trojan Horse by teaching Magna Carta’s British values

Cameron1‘Next year it will be the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta. Indeed, it was on this very day, 799 years ago, that the Great Charter was sealed at Runnymede in Surrey.  It’s a great document in our history – what my favourite book, Our Island Story, describes as the ‘foundation of all our laws and liberties’…The remaining copies of that charter may have faded, but its principles shine as brightly as ever, and they paved the way for the democracy, the equality, the respect and the laws that make Britain. So I want to use this upcoming 800th anniversary as an opportunity for every child to learn about the Magna Carta, for towns to commemorate it, for events to celebrate it.’ – David Cameron, Mail on Sunday


>Yesterday: Parvez Akhtar on Comment: The Birmingham schools problem was about more than extremism – namely, segregation.

Islamism 2) Blair: The Iraq crisis is not due to our invasion

tony-blair‘It is a bizarre reading of the cauldron that is the Middle East today to claim that, but for the removal of Saddam Hussein, we would not have a crisis. The whole of the Middle East and beyond is going through a huge, agonising and protracted transition. We have to liberate ourselves from the notion that “we” have caused this. We haven’t. The fundamental cause of the crisis lies within the region, not outside it.’ – Tony Blair, Sunday Times (£)


>Today: ToryDiary: Iraq: the limits of western responsibility. The limits of western power.

Growth 1) Thousands more caught by inheritance tax

‘The number of families hit with inheritance tax bills will rise by one third this year, according to figures that show the full extent of Britain’s death tax time bomb. Treasury forecasts suggest that rising house prices and the recovering economy will push tens of thousands more people over the £325,000 threshold for paying the duty. This means the number of families required to pay tax on the estates they inherit will increase by 35 per cent to 35,600 during the course of this financial year, a Sunday Telegraph analysis shows.’ – Sunday Telegraph

Growth 2) Who gets the votes from economic recovery?

GROWTH Krieg‘An improving economy still carries the danger that people will take growth for granted and decide it is worth taking a risk with an interventionist and anti-business Labour party. The Conservatives counter that with this message: the economy is returning to health, don’t let Labour ruin it. There are signs that the Tories are having some success. Our YouGov poll today shows that for the first time since 2010 more people think the government is managing the economy well than badly.’ – Sunday Times Leader (£)

>Today: Geoffrey Clifton-Brown MP on Comment: Why Britain must make it more appealing for the Chinese to apply for visas

New rules to rein in strikes

‘Union barons will be banned from waging endless strike campaigns under laws being drawn up by the Tories. Under current “rolling mandate” rules, unions can stage walkouts for as long as they are in dispute — and need just one members’ vote to do it. But ministers want to slap a time limit on their ability to walk out, cutting the mandate to six or even three months.’ – The Sun on Sunday (£)

Labour plan to increase paternity leave

MILIBAND Ed red background‘Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, will launch a report on Thursday recommending that the current two-week entitlement be doubled so that fathers receive a “daddy leave month” at home with their newborn children. Under the plans, the rate of statutory paternity pay would increase from £138.18 a week — the equivalent of £3.45 an hour for a 40-hour working week — to at least the rate of the minimum wage, £6.31 for those aged 21 and over.’ – Sunday Times (£)

d’Ancona: The rise and rise of Theresa May

‘Her decision to stand up to the Police Federation at its conference four weeks ago was strategically shrewd: the once-unbreakable bond between the police and the Tory tribe has frayed. May should not claim the legacy of the Iron Lady too hastily for fear of falling short. But her stern warning to the cops – “If you do not change of your own accord, we will impose change on you” – was a true handbagging. If gender does play a role in this phenomenon, it is to the Home Secretary’s advantage.’ – Matthew d’Ancona, Sunday Telegraph

Parliament wants to grill the EU commissioner candidate

EU Flag‘MPs are preparing to write to Cameron to demand that parliament is given the chance to interview his choice for Britain’s next European commissioner before the formal appointment. The front runner is Andrew Lansley, the Commons leader. Any hearing would allow Eurosceptics to embarrass the Tory leadership by grilling potential commissioners. The letter is being drawn up by the Commons European scrutiny committee chaired by Sir Bill Cash, the veteran Tory Eurosceptic.’ – Sunday Times (£)

>Yesterday: MPsETC: Sir Bill’s knighthood is part of David Cameron’s outreach

Four ministers – Leadsom, Hurd, Lidington and Wright – register HS2 opposition

‘Four Tory ministers have broken cover to declare publicly their opposition to the plans for the controversial £50bn HS2 rail line and demand changes to the project. They have joined nearly 2,000 protesters in lodging petitions in parliament demanding improved compensation for residents, extra tunnels, changes to the route or measures to lessen disruption.’ – Sunday Times (£)

Clegg plans to buy peace by dishing out Lib Dem peerages

CLEGG Bird‘Nick Clegg will seek to heal the wounds of the Liberal Democrats’ disastrous election results last month by handing peerages to key figures who lost their seats. He is thought to be lining up Sir Graham Watson, the former MEP for South West England, for a peerage along with senior councillors such as Richard Kemp, the former leader of Liverpool council.’ – Sunday Times (£)

Health quango plans nannying attack on sugary drinks

‘A leaked document commissioned by a Department of Health agency sets out proposals for a tax on sugary drinks and health warnings on foods which have a high sugar content. The draft report for Public Health England includes a six-point plan to reduce the production, sale, marketing, and consumption of sugar in the UK.’ – Sunday Times (£)

Ukrainian military plane shot down with 49 on board

Screen shot 2014-04-18 at 08.24.52‘A Ukrainian military transport plane was shot down by pro-Kremlin rebels in the east of the country yesterday, killing all 49 servicemen and crew on board. The Il-76went down as it approached the airport in Luhansk, close to the Russian border. The defence ministry in Kiev accused “terrorists” of “cynically and treacherously” downing the plane using heavy machineguns and anti-aircraft missiles.’ – Sunday Times (£)

£500,000 spent on cardboard coppers

‘Police have spent more than £50,000 on cardboard cut-outs of themselves – despite most forces admitting they do not know if they stop crime. The two-dimensional crime fighters are supposed to deter shoplifters and petrol thieves who think they are real PCs from a distance.’ – Mail on Sunday

Half a million watch iPlayer instead of paying the licence fee

BBC‘Nearly half a million people avoided buying a television licence last year because of a loophole created by the BBC iPlayer. Viewers who use the service to watch catch-up programmes online for free can escape the £145.50 annual charge by declaring they do not own a television set or see live shows. Last year, 463,846 opted out in this way, a rise of more than 35,000 in 12 months.’ – Mail on Sunday

News in brief

  • Widdecombe: I’d rather found my own party than vote UKIP – Sunday Telegraph
  • Fathers spend seven times more time with their children than in the 1970s – The Observer
  • Bercow bars Sinn Fein MPs from his house – Mail on Sunday
  • FIFA was warned about Qatar’s security vulnerabilities – Sunday Times (£)
  • England physio stretchered off with dislocated ankle – Mail on Sunday
  • Simon Danczuk MP on dabbling with drugs – The Sun on Sunday (£)
  • Fiona Cunningham hopes to enter parliament – The Sun on Sunday (£)
  • Fears grow for kidnapped Israeli teenagers – The Observer

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