Calais crisis 1) More needs to be done, says Cameron

Cameron1“David Cameron yesterday delivered a stinging rebuke to a minister who claimed the Government was on top of the Calais crisis. … He admitted more needed to be done to fix the chaos – flatly contradicting Philip Hammond’s claim that ministers had ‘a grip’. … Mr Cameron told the BBC: ‘We have done a lot in recent days to improve the situation but there’s a lot more to do so we’ve got more fencing, we’ve got more police officers, more sniffer dogs, more guards, better security and we’re making progress.'” – Daily Mail

  • “Nearly 800 foreigners arrested in Britain since 2012 were killers, rapists or child abusers in their homeland, police revealed.” – The Sun (£)
  • “Thousands of Polish people working in Britain are expected to take part in the first ever migrant workers strike in this country later this month. The protest, planned for Thursday 20th August, is the result of discussions on Polish internet forums by people angry at immigrants being blamed for Britain’s economic problems.” – The Independent
  • “Britons are more welcoming towards migrants than Americans or Germans, according to a poll showing that nearly three in 10 believe incoming foreigners have had a positive impact on the UK.” – Financial Times

And comment:

  • “Don’t believe the press – Britain is far from a refugee magnet.” – Owen Jones, The Guardian

Calais crisis 2) Eurotunnel threatens to sue

Border“Eurotunnel warned the government yesterday that it would claim at least £200 million in compensation if ministers shut the Channel tunnel to freight vehicles overnight in an attempt to prevent illegal immigrants reaching the UK. … The tunnel operator expressed outrage that senior government ministers had considered closing the tunnel if the Calais migrant crisis continued to escalate. … Eurotunnel highlighted the damage that such a move would cause to UK industry and the wider economy and suggested that individual companies might also seek compensation from the government for their losses.” – The Times (£)

  • “An embarrassing security lapse at the heart of the Calais crisis has been exposed after dozens of migrants unlocked a supposedly secure door into the Eurotunnel complex.” – Daily Telegraph

Calais crisis 3) Beeb under fire for Songs of Praise episode

BBC logo“A Tory MP has called on Songs of Praise to cancel its episode with migrants in the Calais ‘Jungle’ and film with blighted communities in Kent instead. … BBC chiefs are ploughing ahead with controversial plans to screen the show from the illegal campsite where thousands are trying to sneak into Britain. … But Damian Collins, MP for Folkestone, insisted the show should be axed and moved to Kent, which has suffered havoc since the crisis began.” – The Sun (£)

  • “Migrants are massing at the border. There’s chaos at every turn. And who are the Beeb sending in to soothe the situation? … The Songs Of Praise team.” – Jeremy Kyle, The Sun (£)

Con Coughlin: Fixing the chaos in Libya must be the Government’s top priority

“It has taken the Sousse killings to shake the Government from its view that any further involvement in Libya should be avoided at all costs. On the contrary, even David Cameron, who once regarded Libya as his great foreign policy triumph, now privately concedes that he has a ‘moral obligation’ to fix Libya. … Perhaps it is not surprising, then, that there’s been talk of sending British troops to Libya as part of a European stabilisation force tasked with restoring some semblance of order to the war-ravaged country.” – Con Coughlin, Daily Telegraph

  • “One of the British army’s top Afghan interpreters who has been targeted by the Taliban after working for David Cameron claims the UK has abandoned him.” – Daily Mail

No.10 ignored warnings about Kids Company, claims former minister

downingst“Civil servants and ministers warned Downing Street before the election that funds designated for Kids Company would be better spent on other children’s charities. … ‘It was recommended that the money be redirected,’ the former minister told the Financial Times. ‘But Oliver Letwin [then minister for government policy] came back and said, “We can’t do that because of Number 10.” The government decided to keep it going until after the election.'” – Financial Times

  • “David Cameron has defended the government’s decision to give Kids Company £3m, as hundreds of supporters of the beleaguered charity staged an emotionally charged march on Downing Street.” – The Guardian
  • “A major Tory party donor has refuted claims he persuaded the government to give a £3million grant to Kids Company. … Mr Lupton said: ‘The report in this morning’s Independent newspaper that I “persuaded Ministers to give Kids Company £3m grant” is not true. I was neither consulted about, nor played any part in that decision.'” – Daily Mail
  • “Senior staff at Kids Company turned a blind eye to the suspected theft of thousands of pounds taxpayers’ money by one of the charity’s ‘favoured’ clients – an alleged drug user who drove a BMW, a whistleblower has claimed.” – Daily Telegraph
  • “The BBC was facing calls to axe Alan Yentob last night as the crisis over Kids Company deepened. … The executive found himself the target of anger from his own staff after he admitted meddling with the corporation’s coverage into the charity he chairs.” – Daily Mail

And comment:LORDS logo

  • “Understandably, MPs are demanding an investigation into whether Mr Yentob is transgressing the BBC’s editorial standards on impartiality and objectivity. … From the BBC Trust, however, there is virtual silence.” – Daily Mail editorial
  • “How did Ms Batmanghelidjh garner so much support, I ask, sitting in her children’s wonderland of an office. She bridles at the question.” – Kiran Stacey, Financial Times
  • How the world fell for Camila Batmanghelidjh – Harriet Sergeant, Daily Telegraph

>Today: Tory Diary: Kids Company shows why Freedom of Information should apply to anyone taking taxpayers’ money

The Prime Minister’s 40 Lords appointments a year

“As he prepares to announce dozens of new peers in the next few weeks, it has emerged that Mr Cameron has been more likely than any other prime minister since 1958 to send people from ruling parties to the Lords. … Researchers at University College London found his appointments average at 40 per year since 2010. … The previous record had been set by Labour’s Harold Wilson with 38 a year, followed by Tony Blair – frequently criticised by Tories at the time for packing the Lords – on 37.” – Daily Mail

  • “The honours system is set for a new row over allegations of cronyism after Nick Clegg nominated a wealthy Liberal Democrat donor and friend for a knighthood.” – The Independent
  • “Labour leadership hopeful Yvette Cooper has called on David Cameron to freeze or cap new appointments to the House of Lords until a plan to reform the second chamber has been put in place.” – The Guardian

Bruce Anderson: The Tory cannibals are devouring British politics

“It might seem odd. The Tories only obtained 37 per cent of the vote and a 12-seat majority. Yet they may now be able to seize the central ground of public opinion. There is, of course, one little obstacle: Europe. But assuming that David Cameron achieves an acceptable renegotiation and wins the referendum by a comfortable margin – a reasonable assumption – the European question will no longer bedevil the Tory party. Tories will be able to concentrate on other objectives and in so doing, they could reshape British politics.” – Bruce Anderson, Daily Telegraph

The Sun backs Boris’s speech on inequality

Boris“Britain must give bright people from poor families as good a chance of a top job as rich kids who still get all the breaks. … That’s the sort of common sense view that chimes with voters and used to be uttered by Labour before the party was engulfed by Twitter-fuelled leftie lunacy. … They are in fact the thoughts of Boris de Pfeffel Johnson (Eton and Oxford), Tory MP and Mayor of London. … A man not exactly from the wrong side of the tracks himself. … But he’s right, isn’t he?” – Sun editorial (£)

  • “Europe’s biggest city is lacking in leadership, and the problem could outlast Mr Johnson’s tenure, which reaches its conclusion next May.” – Financial Times editorial

>Today: Cllr John Moss on Comment: Stephen Greenhalgh has the vision and the ability to be a great Mayor of London

> Yesterday: ToryDiary – Boris tries to solve an argument with himself

DWP told to provide clearer information about jobseeker sanctions

“The UK statistics watchdog has asked the Department for Work and Pensions to ensure its statements on jobseeker sanctions are ‘objective and impartial’ following a series of complaints by leading experts. … In an indictment of current DWP methods, the UK Statistics Authority’s chief, Sir Andrew Dilnot, has said he will write to the top statistician in the department requesting that it publishes much more data and gives the public a clearer understanding of how it is imposing sanctions on jobseekers.” – The Guardian

Vaizey moves against cold-callers

VAIZEY Ed“Spam marketing firms will be forced to display their phone number when calling victims under new plans to end the blight of cold-calling. … The new rules could also apply to those charity fundraisers exposed by the Mail for targeting vulnerable people. The new Caller ID rules are being drawn up by Culture Minister Ed Vaizey and will be published next month. … One Whitehall source said it was ‘outrageous’ that firms could hide behind an unknown number.” – Daily Mail

  • “Some of Britain’s top retailers are facing calls to be more honest with airport customers as they pocket millions of pounds in VAT discounts on duty free items without passing on the savings.” – The Independent
  • “Banks are cutting the amount landlords can borrow and demanding they pass stiff tests in a crackdown on the buy-to-let boom.” – Daily Mail
  • “Estimates suggest hundreds of billions of pounds of criminal money is laundered through UK banks and their subsidiaries each year.” – Financial Times

And comment:

  • “It is time for business to spend, not save, and deliver economic growth.” – Philip Aldrick, The Times (£)

Conservative MPs’ anger at NHS consultant’s pay rise

“A £135,000-a-year NHS consultant retired from his job with a £1.9million pension but was rehired in the same job days later with a pay rise to £152,000. … Basil Fozard, 59, left his role as medical director at Bournemouth Hospital, Dorset, in June but returned to the same role with a £17,000 pay increase only last month. … The revelations have sparked anger among local MPs including Conor Burns and Christopher Chope, who have called on the Trust’s directors to explain why they approved the appointment.” – Daily Mail

> Yesterday: Nick Hoile on Comment – Conservatives can – and must – win on the NHS

Former brothel keeper to be questioned in Heath case

HEATH Edward“A former brothel keeper at the centre of a child abuse controversy surrounding Sir Edward Heath is to be questioned by authorities on the matter for the first time, the Guardian has learned. … Myra Forde, 67, was acquitted of running a brothel when the prosecution dropped its case on the first day of trial at Winchester crown court in 1992. … A retired Wiltshire police officer believes the prosecution was aborted because threats were made to expose Heath, the late former prime minister, as a paedophile.” – The Guardian

  • “So could [Heath] have assaulted some of the young musicians, as the former police officer suggested this week? … The Mail has contacted a number of British former members of the early orchestra, none of whom recalled being aware of anything untoward involving their famous conductor.” – Daily Mail
  • “Disgraced TV producer Jonathan King has claimed Ted Heath was not gay as he resisted his advances on a flight from Scotland to London.” – Daily Mail

And comment:

  • “Even as an enemy of the former PM I am appalled by this witch-hunt.” – Michael Brown, The Independent
  • “If Heath was a child abuser, I’m an aardvark.” – Matthew Parris, The Times (£)

> Yesterday: Iain Dale’s column – Innocent until proven guilty still applies – to Ted Heath and anyone else

Janner to appear in court over child sex charges

“Lord Janner has been ordered to appear in court over child sex charges despite suffering from ‘severe dementia’ and being unable to understand the proceedings. … The ruling came after the former Labour peer and MP failed to attend a preliminary hearing over the case yesterday. … His lawyers argued that the 87-year-old – who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s – could suffer ‘catastrophic’ distress if compelled to appear in person.” – Daily Mail

Corbyn: “This is about hope”…

CORBYN Jeremy“Jeremy Corbyn has told his Labour critics that his mandate to lead the party will stretch beyond Westminster if he wins the contest to succeed Ed Miliband. Amid rising concern among established Labour figures at the apparently unstoppable momentum behind the veteran leftwinger, Corbyn said his campaign has captured a public mood against austerity also seen in Spain, Greece and the US. … in an interview with the Guardian, Corbyn made it clear he was rising above personal attacks: ‘The mood is there and we happen to be in the middle of it. We are not doing celebrity, personality, abusive politics – we are doing ideas. This is about hope.'” – The Guardian

Read the Guardian’s interview with Jeremy Corbyn in full

  • “Rich people would be happy to pay more tax, Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn has claimed in an attempt to overcome criticism that he is too left-wing.” – Daily Mail
  • “A new wealth tax should be levied on the assets of the rich as part of a campaign to make the well-off pay their fair share, Jeremy Corbyn’s economic guru has said.” – The Times (£)

And comment:

  • “But there is indeed a touch of a Justin Bieber concert — even of a revivalist rally — as Mr Corbyn ambles onto the stage, the geography teacher feted with a boyband welcome.” – Robert Hardman attends a Corbyn rally for the Daily Mail

> Yesterday:

…but his questionable attachments remain

LABOUR dead rose“These latest revelations raise serious questions about Corbyn’s association with extremists of all stripes. … The Islington MP has previously referred to Hamas and Hezbollah as his ‘friends’, and has invited convicted IRA members to Parliament. On Thursday, he refused five times to condemn IRA atrocities when interviewed by BBC Radio Ulster. … Jonathan Arkush, President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, said: ‘Paul Eisen is a notorious Holocaust denier and if Jeremy Corbyn does have links with him this would be very alarming. We would ask Mr Corbyn to clarify the situation.'” – Daily Mail

Kendall accuses rivals of spreading false relationship rumours

“Liz Kendall has accused her Labour leaderships rivals of spreading ‘smears’ and false rumours after she was forced to deny suggestions she is in a relationship with her campaign manager. … Miss Kendall, 44, has been the subject of unfounded claims in Labour circles that she is in a relationship with John Woodcock, a fellow MP who is recently divorced. … Mr Woodcock, speaking with Miss Kendall’s permission, last night took the unusual step of publicly stating that the claims were ‘not true, has never been true and would never be true’.” – Daily Telegraph

  • “I really like Jeremy personally. I think his politics would be wrong for the party and the country, but I’d never quit the party I love and I don’t think others would either.” – Liz Kendall is interviewed in The Independent

Labour HQ roots out 1,000 rogue voters

ballot_box“Labour headquarters was in chaos last night after up to a thousand people were barred from taking part in the leadership election as supporters of other parties … An effort to re-examine every new member, registered supporter and trade unionist who has signed up to vote has thrown up a huge number of people who should be ineligible. … Every member of staff at the party’s Brewer’s Green headquarters in London is understood to be focused on rooting out members of hard-left groups such as Left Unity and the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition.” – The Times (£)

  • “In its currently enfeebled and electorally shattered state, Labour is proving a pliant host for parasitic and totalitarian far-left groups.” – Times editorial (£)

The scale of last year’s exams crisis, revealed

“The severity of last year’s exam crisis that almost left thousands of teenagers without A-level and GCSE results was revealed in a report yesterday. … Head teachers and parents were furious when papers were marked late, went missing or were given inaccurate grades. Some grades were changed when papers were re-marked, but by then university places had been lost. … The report by Ofqual, the exam regulator, set out a catalogue of errors at OCR, one of the three biggest exam boards.” – The Times (£)

  • “Leading universities are setting aside hundreds of exclusive clearing places for overseas students who can boost their coffers with fees of up to £20,000 a year.” – Daily Mail

SAS insiders rail against softer selection tests

Armed Forces“Selection for Britain’s elite special forces will be softened under plans to protect recruits from extreme temperatures, humidity and winds, triggering anger from SAS insiders and their counterparts in the United States. … Test marches in the Welsh hills are expected to be stopped if temperatures rise to about 28C (82F) or more if combined with humid conditions, The Times has learnt. Extra water will be provided along routes instead of recruits being required to ration their supply or refill bottles from streams.” – The Times (£)

  • “Going soft on SAS selection would be a terrible mistake.” – Mike Lynch, The Times (£)

Gagging order rendered pointless by social media

“An injunction banning a newspaper from naming a sportsman and a celebrity who had an alleged affair was branded a farce yesterday after the duo were unmasked across social networking websites. … Even the female star involved, named as X in court papers, openly challenged the order when she posted a photo of herself reading a newspaper report about the injunction.” – Daily Mail

  • “Mrs Justice Laing’s reason for granting the injunction – she declared that Britain is now such a Godless society that only the puritanical still believe that celebrities’ sexual affairs should be publicly exposed – is both offensive and misguided.” – Daily Mail editorial

News in brief

  • Trump pulls in 24 million viewers for Republican primary debate – Financial Times
  • Murderer Dale Cregan pictured after being moved to psychiatric hospital – Daily Mail
  • Germany MPs protest use of English in EU documents – Daily Telegraph
  • Cinema gunman James Holmes spared the death penalty – The Sun (£)
  • England on the brink of winning the Ashes – The Sun (£)

And finally 1) Boris swings and misses

“Boris Johnson looks a right divot during his first proper game of golf. … The London Mayor, 51, got a quick lesson before repeatedly failing to hit the ball at his local club in Hillingdon, West London.” – The Sun (£)

And finally 2) Brownifornia

BROWN Scotland“If Gordon Brown has been conspicuous by his absence over recent months, it may be because he moved to the sunnier climes of California. … The former prime minister and his family traded their home in Fife for an affluent neighbourhood of Los Angeles earlier this year, The Times has learnt.” – The Times (£)

And finally 3) Votes for voices

“Researchers from the University of Miami in Florida and Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, discovered that political candidates with deeper voices tend to win more votes and interviews with voters suggested that deep voices convey physical strength, competence and integrity – for both male and female voices.” – The Independent