06/01/2014 The Papers


06/01/2014

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fortunes of English critic. We will also see how Portugal said farewell

:00:00.:00:00.

to a footballing legend. And bad news for British tennis ahead of the

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Australian open next week. Hello. Welcome to our lookahead at

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what the papers will be bringing us tomorrow. With BR broadcaster Penny

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Smith and Randeep Ramesh, the social affairs editor at The Guardian. We

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will start with the Express. It says the good run for the FTSE 100 means

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pensioners are due a windfall. The Financial Times says that Britain's

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car industry is now the most buoyant in Europe thanks to improved

:00:42.:00:46.

consumer confidence. The Telegraph says speed limit will be lowered on

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some roads to reduce air pollution. The independently each with spending

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cuts proposed I George Osborne, which have been criticised by the

:00:56.:00:58.

Liberal Democrats. The Guardian says talks of a Cabinet clash over the

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policy. The Mail says that the Environment Secretary wants shoppers

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to buy British food in season, instead of imports. It also pictures

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a giant wave in south Wales, and the people risking the storm for a front

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row seat. We're going to start with this story that has been dominating

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the news throughout the day, the announcement by the Chancellor that

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if the Conservatives win the next election they will have more

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spending cuts. ?25 billion worth, and about half of that is going to

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come from the welfare budget. Let's show you some of the front pages,

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detailing that. There you have the Guardian. Cabinet clash over Osborne

:01:41.:01:48.

welfare cuts. The Independent, happy New Year from George Osborne. That

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is his New Year message, there are going to be more cuts. Let's have a

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look at... Well, that is it, actually. It is on the front page of

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the Daily Telegraph as well, welfare cuts spark fury from Nick Clegg. It

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is on the front there, as well. Randeep, it is not the New year's

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message that people want to hear, but the Tory half of the coalition

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is saying it is very necessary? George Osborne is doing two things,

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looking for votes, and secondly he is pitching the political debate

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where he wanted, talking tough about welfare. His thing is that Labour

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does not have an offer in that space and he is going to win the argument

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by talking tough on welfare. You can see the reaction from his Cabinet

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colleagues, they are gassed. Iain Duncan Smith thinks, I have

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delivered you ?18 billion worth of spending cuts. -- they are I --

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aghast. I think it is an interesting political debate. It may never come

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to pass, because we have to see who wins the election. It is

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interesting, one assumes that the Treasury, or at least the

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Conservatives and Mr Crosby, have told this to within an inch of its

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life and think it is a good idea? They must do. The thing is, they

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keep on. Nick Clegg has been talking about it as being an unrealistic,

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unfair attack on the poor while demanding no sacrifices from the

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wealthy. In fact, I think the big point here is, can they, if they did

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when, if the Conservatives did win in 2015, could there be a coalition?

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You have the death of a minister talking about how you have a

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Conservative Party driven by two ideological impulses. One is too

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remorselessly pare back the state for ideological reasons, secondly, I

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think they are making a monument of the stake in doing so. -- monumental

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mistake in doing so. When you are talking about politicians that are

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used to pussyfooting around, being careful, that seems extraordinarily

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strong. You obviously know more than me about that, but it seems quite

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strong? I think it is just politics. Or economic sap best.

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Really, the welfare budget has been pared back pretty drastically. You

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are really talking about the disabled carers, taking it from the

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electorally important ground the squeezed middle, which is not

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somewhere you want to go to. I suggested that perhaps they have

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polled this within an inch of its life, but what if they think, this

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is the kind of thing that will get me down to rode. Russell Brand told

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me not to! The real risk is that the numbers do not add up. He's asking

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for ?25 billion worth of cuts, 12 billion from welfare, that is a lot

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of money from somewhere else. Do you raise taxes? That is how he would

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like to position Labour, a tax and spend party. What he really doesn't

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tell people is that the economic solid is that you can change how

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much you repay your debts at. This is all a technical argument about

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whether you want to be in surplus. That is George Osborne's vision,

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nobody has to agree to that. Labour could come in and say, we don't have

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to stick to those plans in 2018 and therefore we can turn the taps on.

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That is the problem for George Osborne. It is a long election

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campaign. Does this argument get lost when people are struggling, pay

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is stagnating? I think those arguments will linger in people's

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mind. Very interesting. A warning of 60 mph motorway limits. This is all

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too meaty EU rules on air pollution because we are not meeting those

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roles at the moment? -- to meet EU rules. They say 60 mph on the M1,

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and sections of the M3 in Surrey, 13 other stretches of motorway.

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Motoring organisations are saying it is going to the lowering of the

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speed limit through the back door. It's interesting, only last year or

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the year before, they were about raising the speed limit. We were

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talking about how much that could save us, the cuts to journey times,

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it would be a brilliant idea. That is dead in the water. We are going

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to 60 mph. I don't know about you, it says from 7am to 7pm. I don't

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understand why, if it is about congestion, which is what they are

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saying, about slowing down and speeding up, changing through the

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gears, because certainly just by braking it does not cause any more

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pollution, I can't imagine it does. I might be wrong. Cars are more

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efficient at a slower speed, apparently. They pump out less

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nitrogen, or whatever. In this case, if this is going to be the new

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thing, shall we just stop making fast cars? Let's make cars with a

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top speed limit of 60 malls per hour. A Ferrari with a 60 mph top

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speed limit? Well, we could get rid of Top Gear. Some people would not

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mind that. We were promised our way races, being able to whizz around in

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coalition Britain at 80 mph. Now we have to go to the continent. I do

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think it is a bit odd. If you do drive on the motorway, you often

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have to slow down because there was lots of traffic and congestion.

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There are 50 mph signs. This does not appear to affect HGVs,

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apparently the worst polluters, and there is no speed limit on them at

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the moment. I still can't believe in 2014, what is it? 2014? Just gone.

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And you were working on New Year's Eve, not getting smashed. When I was

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a kid and I thought about 2014, I thought there would be bubble cars

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flying around, you programme it and they just go off, beam me up,

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Scotty. The Independent, really dramatic picture of a huge tidal

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surge. This is South Wales. And those people just standing there,

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taking photographs of it. Presumably somebody standing a bit more

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sensibly took this particular photograph. It is dramatic, scary.

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Amazing, this winter weather. Actually, London has been really

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quite warm. A beautiful day. But they have raised the Thames barrier.

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Exactly. But I think that would have come over the top, possibly right up

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to the Shard. But they are cutting the flood budget? That is the

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decision, you have to make those decisions. That would not be stopped

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by flood defences. But it is odd timing and the Government look

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stupid. I think David Cameron, in his own constituency, when he had

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his ear bent. But I'm not sure politicians can be blamed for the

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weather. It's about climate change, the fact that the climate is

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changing without a shadow of a doubt. They are saying these events

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are going to happen more and more often. They are actually saying,

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this is what we are going to be doing, so let's do... I don't know.

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We are taking it seriously with driving slower. On to the Daily

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Express. We mentioned a little bit, Randeep about the coalition, or at

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least the Tory half, their calculation in perhaps not hitting

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pensioners as hard as some people might feel they should, when it

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comes to austerity. Millions will get pensions windfall. Now, this is

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because the FTSE is doing very well and annuities and pension funds are

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doing OK on shares. But is there a perception that pensioners are

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getting a bit of a free ride when it comes to deficit reduction? Well, it

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looks like it when you just look at the figures on the face of it, but

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the point is that pensioners are being squeezed for years now,

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because of course they have savings. They can't make any more money. They

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have savings and their savings in real terms are dwindling in a huge

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way. They've been getting less and less. Only recently, there was a

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story on the front page of the Express, elderly steal to survive as

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pensions dwindle and prices soar. Talking about they're finding

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89-year-olds being arrested for stealing to keep going. But,

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Randeep, winter fuel allowance and the freedom Bass, bus passes, there

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does seem to be in the coalition's calculation the idea that these

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people vote therefore we are not going to take some of these away? I

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think there are two different groups. There are the poor

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pensioners that Penny is talking about and they are get ing wiped and

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they're having to live with a high rate of inflation. The people who

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have a lot of money and perhaps can do without their bus pass and free

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television licence are the people who Nick Clegg and Iain Duncan Smith

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would like to target. The sums are trifling. Even if we got rid of the

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entire free bus pass budget it's ?1 billion. You still need to find

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another ?11 billion. Pensioners were historically very badly treated and

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it's only really in the last decade that they've made anything, so I

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think it will be difficult to make an argument to crack down, unless

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you means test them. Let's move on to the Financial Times. Lawyers

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having been going on strike. Some of them don't get paid very much. Some

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people out there might think that's not the case. But actually,

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according to the Criminal Bar Association half their members

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earned ?27,000 a year. Yes, they are saying they earn ?27,000 and that

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this is going to be cut by 30% and they're saying that the trouble is

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that people will just say we don't want to do Legal Aid. Therefore,

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they're saying that justice is at stake and this is a problem. This is

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the first strike I think, the walk-out by the profession in 400

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years. It is - you look at the pictures and you just go, yes, they

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look like they're 400 years. I know. I'm sorry, I'm not trying to make

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light of it. But, really, it's the wig-wearing lawyers. They're saying

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it's about British justice at stake. The Government have taken the old

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adage crime doesn't pay to heart. If you're a criminal barrister it

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certainly won't. Is that self-serving, the idea that they're

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saying it's all about justice and people not having access to Legal

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Aid and they're worried about their pay packets. The Government have

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played a dicey game with the statistics. 84,000 was the average

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income, but when you took out the people who earn over 500 grand to a

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year you got down to 54,000. But that's everything. You have to pay

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rent and VAT off that and - And there are a lot of them who are paid

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?27,000. It's like the banking. There are still people being paid

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?1.5 million bonuses. But many are on a quarter of that. 25 grand. Good

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if you're at the top and bad if you're at the bottom. Thank you

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both. We'll look at some of the stories later. Stay with us here on

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BBC News for that. Also, coming up at 11.00pm, we'll have more on the

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extreme weather, as storms and huge waves continue to batter western and

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southern parts of the UK. Coming up now, it's Sportsday.

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