17/12/2013 The Papers


17/12/2013

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his future by Geoffrey Boycott. And we'll have all the action from the

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league cup finals which have taken place this evening.

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Hello and welcome to our look ahead to what the the papers will be

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bringing us tomorrow. With me are Jenni Russell, columnist at The

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Times, and Tim Collins, former speech writer to Margaret Thatcher

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and now head of the political unit for the PR firm Bell Pottinger. The

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Independent leads with questions over the death of Abbas Khan, the

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British surgeon found dead in a prison cell in Syria.

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prison cell The paper asks, why would he kill

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himself? The Daily Mirror says Lord

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Hanningfield is facing a police probe over clocking in claims but

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the BBC understands The Met has yet to respond to calls from a Labour MP

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to look into the allegations. The Telegraph says fracking is

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planned for half of Britain under Government plans to increase the

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search for shale gas. David Cameron is rushing through

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curbs on access to benefits for Romanians and Bulgarians, according

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to The Guardian. The Express says we're in the middle

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of a house price boom and that the market is booming all over Britain.

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The Mail claims that women over the age of 65 drink more often than the

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under-40s. And The Times leads with the

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conviction of a former headteacher of a prestigious prep school for

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historic child sex offences. Many of the papers dominated by

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Syria but also the story about migration. This is clearly the

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government in a panic over what the British population will think when

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the restrictions on Romanians and Bulgarians working here are lifted

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on January one. They said a few months ago that they didn't think

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they could do anything to restrict those benefits but we know

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behind-the-scenes the policy unit and other people have been working

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hard on proposals. Now Cameron has announced that when people arrive

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here in January, instead of claiming benefits after one month, they will

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wait three months. The other thing which is interesting is that I don't

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know if you have seen coverage about the remaining Roma people begging --

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Romanian Roma people begging. The border agency will now be able to

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send an EU national back to their country and ban them for one year if

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they have been found guilty of begging. That is a dramatic change

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because up to now there has been nothing that they could do. Do you

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get the feeling it has been rather leaving it a bit late? This is

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clearly a panicked reaction because something like three quarters of the

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British population say they are worried about the idea that migrants

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may come for just the same reasons as Polish people did several years

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ago. They look at pregnancy that wages are here -- they look at

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Britain and see that wages are higher. If we had a similar

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opportunity, wouldn't we take it? We gather that The Sun has a poll.

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There was one published earlier this week that show that public opinion

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is more nuanced. Although three quarters of people will say that if

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people are coming year to pay taxes then they are perfectly fine. I

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think what the Prime Minister is addressing is a small minority of

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those who might be coming over here who are attracted by the strength of

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the British welfare state. We are slightly different in that we don't

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have a contribution record, like other European countries where you

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have to have a record of contribution. The public are not

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against any form of migration. They just welcome people who are here to

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work. In The Telegraph, this headline, Cameron will block

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benefits to EU migrants. Different but they have obviously all had the

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same briefing. For once, The Telegraph is less friendly to the

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Prime Minister than The Guardian. It says he wants to make the UK are

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less attractive place for EU migrants. But The Guardian gives the

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full quote. It finishes with EU migrants who want to live off the

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state. I don't think it is as simple as that. There is a large minority

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in Britain to whom UKIP appeals who don't want migrants to come even if

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they are coming to work. There are people in society worried about

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their culture or job rates being affected. The arrival of migrants,

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hard-working and willing to work for lower wages, has undercut people's

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labour power. People are worried about that. That point is picked up

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in The Guardian. A Conservative MP says that if you're thinking about

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economic rationality, minimum wage in Romania is about ?1 per hour. Why

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wouldn't you want to move from one to the other. It has to be looked at

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in the way that all these things are managed, what is the impact of those

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who are low skilled and on low wages in the United Kingdom who may feel

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they are missing out? It is possible to manage migration in a sensible

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way. We can't carry on thinking either everybody in or nobody in. We

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have to work out who will strengthen and improve public services and

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economic strength. But there is a whole of questions about

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infrastructure and skills and such. The Sun has the headline draw a red

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line on immigration or else. The Sun, still Britain's biggest selling

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newspaper, indicates that there are a large number of people who think

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that people are only coming year to claim benefits. This is The Sun

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hand-wringing to their readership which I find that unpleasant. It

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seems to be saying foreigners are not welcome. I think it is

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understandable that people worried about rapid change. I think people

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are less concerned about the nature of people who are about to arrive so

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much as protesting about what has happened and the last decade. It was

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an extraordinary rate of immigration. Most of us dislike

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change unless we have chosen it. To be fair to The Sun, it highlights

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Romania and Bulgaria. What is is doing is linking this into the

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renegotiation the Prime Minister says he wants to have about

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Britain's status in Europe. One of the basic four freedoms of the

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European Union is freedom of labour. The Prime Minister is saying that

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there are a number of other countries, like the Germans, who are

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concerned about the possibility that freedom of movement. These proposals

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to curb it could be welcomed by other countries. So, a different

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topic altogether. Plastic banknotes, according to The

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Guardian, will come into use by 2016. Apparently the decision has

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already been made by the bank. I am astonished by this. We now all have

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to pay 5p for plastic bags at checkouts and now we are going to be

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producing these hideous things. I suspect we might be more careful

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with plastic banknotes. Yes, but we are adding to the total of plastic

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in the world. Isn't there are arguments that they take more

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handling than our paper not? So it is claimed. But what will it feel

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like? We're talking about the second half of the second decade of the

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21st century and we are talking about having paper currency at all?

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We should be moving towards having it all done by a smart card and away

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from cash. More and more shops and services are doing things

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electronically. Why are they going on the assumption that we will still

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be using cash? If you get your wallet stolen then you will be

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awfully glad that the existence of cash and that you don't just have to

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have this electronic medium. Well you won't get the cash in the wallet

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back but you would be compensated for anything on your card. On to the

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FT. This story says that everyone is trying to curry favour with Ukraine.

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Russian deal with Ukraine, bloated EU. They say that the gas price has

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been slashed and $15 billion bond pledge. I think across Europe, the

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view has been taken that it is intolerable that the Russians are

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leaning on the Ukrainians. I suspect that could be some bad things going

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on in terms of internal democracy but I think we should look at it

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sometimes from the other side's point of view. If the EU were to

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expand and take in Ukraine, that would mean security guarantees would

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go to include the Ukraine and later expand for the Ukraine. If you're in

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Russia, the Ukraine is right next to Russia. It is a tremendous security

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threats to them if they have NATO right up, absorbing Ukraine. And

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people aren't that wild about Romanians and Bulgarians in the UK.

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If we bring in Ukraine it's another 60 million people. Ukraine is more

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or less equally divided between the Russians in the North who would like

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to stay close to Russia and people in the South who suffered

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appallingly under Stalin who are less keen on it. I think it is the

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scale here of the bride Russia is offering. It is cutting the price by

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one third at which it will sell gas. It is also reversing the ban on

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Ukrainian imports, which is apparently one of the reasons the

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Ukrainian economy went into decline. When Russia offer ideal to the

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Ukraine, we call it a bribe but when the EU do it it is standard

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commercial practice. This is why think it looks rather different from

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Moscow. I think we take a view which has not really been justified by our

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activities in the west of the last ten or 15 years that we have the

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right to lecture other countries about national security. Cutting our

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gas bills by a third... I think it is fascinating that unless they

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hadn't been these protests in Ukraine wouldn't have had such a

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good deal now. The Daily Mail headline - women over 65 are

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drinking more often than the under 40s.

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That's very surprising, isn't it? Is bigger blue possibly not. --

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Possibly not. I would imagine most over 65 is our sitting there five

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days a week with a glass of wine with dinner. They are not out there

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in the streets hitting people and having drunken fights and being

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taken home in ambulances, which is what tends to happen to the younger

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age bracket. I really doubt some of these figures here. It says that 14%

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of over 65s drink five times a week and only 2% of those aged 16 to 24

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do. I think I know those 2%, in that case, so I don't know where the

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others are! It's actually rather wonderful that the daily wail which

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was running -- Daily Mail which a few years ago was running campaigns

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about how terrible youth drinking was is now talking about the

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grannies. And how young women are doing all right. I suspect, is

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usually the case, it is about the difference between quantity and

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frequency but I think above all, across all age groups, perhaps a bit

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less would be good. The last story - great fun. The Telegraph - just say

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no, it's not worth the trouble and strife. A study to assess weather

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men sink into deep depression during a marriage where he had been asked

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to obey every wish of his wife. That would depress any man or woman. You

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are being turned into a slave. It was one man and one woman. My wife

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is watching this so obviously, I always agree with everything she

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says and I'm perfectly cheerful. Thank you very much to you both for

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your input. Jenni Russell and Tim Collins.

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Stay with us because at midnight, we'll have the latest on the search

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for the missing teenager Jayden Parkinson. Police have cordoned off

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a graveyard in Didcot. But coming up next, it's time the Sportsday.

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Hello and welcome to Sportsday. I'm Katie Gornall. Our headlines this

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evening: Jose's love affair with the League Cup is broken, as Sunderland

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find the "Ki" to knock out Chelsea. Not an ideal place to play football

:15:55.:15:57.

- Roy Hodgson says he's worried about the climate when England play

:15:58.:15:59.

Italy in

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