11/02/2014 The Papers


11/02/2014

No need to wait to see what's in the papers - tune in for a lively and informed conversation about the next day's headlines. Presented by Clive Myrie.


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of their scores was the biggest in Olympics history. Chelsea also

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played at West Bromwich Albion, and I will have the results.

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

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us tomorrow. With me are Pippa Crerar of the London Evening

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Standard newspaper, and comedian and writer David Schneider. Let's have a

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look at some of tomorrow morning's front pages. The Independent is

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leading with all of the floods. A picture that of the swollen River

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Thames in Surrey, and the Prime Minister's warning that the

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situation is likely to get worse before it gets better. The Financial

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Times features news that Barclays is to cut hundreds of jobs in the UK,

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saying the Chief Executive is on the back foot after deciding to boost

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bonuses. The Daily Telegraph leads with David Cameron's pledged to

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spend whatever is necessary on rebuilding affected areas. That is

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also the top story on the front page of The Metro. The Guardian is

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focused on the flood funding pledge their too, and the Mail's front-page

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is focusing on its own proposal to divert money from foreign aid to

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flood victims in the UK. We are going to start with the flooding -

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the story of the decade! The Independent. Britain's water

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torture. No matter how much money you throw at this, if the water

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doesn't go away, it will be a nightmare. It could be another few

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months. We have already had the wettest January since records

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began. It doesn't bode very well for springtime for most of us,

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especially for those living close to the Thames. The Independent is

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warning that the Severn and the River Wye are the latest rivers that

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the Environment Agency are keeping an eye on, because the levels are

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rising. Hundreds of people have been evacuated in the last few days, and

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we could see many, many more in the next few months. The picture in the

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Independent is striking. It looks like a lake, where the Thames used

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to weave through Shepperton and Surrey. It is very interesting. We

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have had days and days of the floods of leading the newspapers. Normally

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you get to the point where story fatigue takes over, and they feel

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the need to break into something else, but if we have months of these

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stories coming up, how can we ignore it? A cynic might say that Cameron

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has now said, let's stop the blame game, mainly because he was starting

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to get the blame. He has just started to come out and do

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something. Cynics would say that it is just because we are seeing

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pictures of Shepperton in Surrey, the home counties that are

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vulnerable. But if that is your house, it is a terrifying prospect.

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A lot of these communities have been inundated with water today, but also

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MPs! Flooded! They have had to put out sandbags to keep out Miliband!

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It has been terrifying. It has been a very difficult balancing act,

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especially for David Cameron. The last few days, I felt he has been

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trying to make politicians about it. He has said that the lack of

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dredging is was not his cuts, it was about something else. But

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politicians are out there getting heckled. They are almost like

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punchbag. They are taking the abuse. And there is infighting

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within his own party. I was struck today by some of the TV footage of

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individuals who had been affected, saying, we don't care about the

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politics of this. I don't care about Eric Pickles and Owen Paterson. What

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I care about is the fact that the help is not going through now, and I

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need it. That is why Cameron is trying to rise above it, and saying,

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all that matters is sorting out the situation. In the Telegraph, Mr

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Cameron says money is no object. If it takes a lot of money, he is

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willing to spend it. It is interesting that suddenly we have a

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lot of money! I think it is indicative of the short-term view of

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this government. They have cut and cut and cut, and that is all great,

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until something like this happens. There was limits on what the

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Environment Agency could spend. That was because we had austerity. But

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suddenly, you are faced with a real disaster, and it is a false economy.

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You have to put out more than you would have done if you had prepared.

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There is definitely the argument that why didn't you pay for it in

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the first place, if money is no object? I interpret this as a

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response to UKIP and Nigel Farage, who is calling for some of the

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foreign aid budget to be diverted to help people in the UK. Does this

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shoot the Mail down? I think it is attempting to. We are a wealthy

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country. Austerity or not, we can afford to build flood defences and

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help out local businesses, and even householders who haven't insured who

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are going to get some hope. We will see about that, because they have

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been sucked right, the hardship funds, over recent years. They are

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claiming that the money is there and they don't need to get into the

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foreign aid budget. I think a lot of the comparison between the floods

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we've seen in Bangladesh, where tens of thousands of people die, lose

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their homes and livelihoods, and awful though these floods are in

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Somerset and the Thames Valley, it is just on a different scale. I

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think most people can recognise that. Onto the front page of the

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Guardian. PM's high-stakes flood plains. The army marches in.

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Apparently, they forgot their wellies as well! It is a high-stakes

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pledge because he is saying money is no object. Where does that stop?

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There is a problem that no amount of money can stop the floods, but then

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again, that's why it is all very well pledging this and dealing with

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UKIP and the Daily Mail, and dealing with the politics of having to tell

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people, I'm here, I'm your Prime Minister, but it is indicative of

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the lack of planning of this government, and the fact they have

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not addressed by Mitch H. That is the planning we should be looking

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at. He dodged the opportunity to discuss climate change, because he

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has an Environment Secretary who is in climate change denial. I think

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there is the wider issue, not just the knee jerk response. Should he

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have said, what ever money is needed, it will be there? Rather

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than a blank cheque? Has he just chosen the wrong words to sell this

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response? Possibly, but I think he is probably wary because of his

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reaction to the floods in 2007, when he was in rue Wanda with his Shadow

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Cabinet, and his constituency was deluged with water and he didn't

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come back. He got a real battering over that. Compared with Gordon

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Brown, who was prime minister at that point. I think it was days or

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weeks after he took over as prime minister, and his response to the

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floods crisis at that point, and making money available, was seen as

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being one of the things that bolstered his leadership. He

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advanced in the polls, but Cameron will be remembering what happens if

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you don't be seen to lead from the front. The consensus is among many

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people and within the government that they have not got on top of

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this soon enough. But that is his style. It is almost back to the

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wall. Let's not tackle the crisis until you absolutely have to. But

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when it reaches a crisis point and he realises he has to act, he throws

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everything at it. And then he appears the elder statesman and

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looks calm and collected and runs this new Cabinet committee. Money is

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no object. Whether the readers, voters and people affected by the

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floods see it the same way or whether they think he should have

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acted sooner... I wonder what the people of Somerset feel about this

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new, macho COBRA man who is coming and sorting it out. They have been

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suffering for five or six weeks. It is all very well as saying that he

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has kicked into gear in the last few days. This did not make the papers

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initially. It has only been in the last week or two at the Somerset

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Levels flooding has been on the front pages. It was not in the lead

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story on the BBC. It is not just the politicians who have been slow to

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catch up. But it is their job to keep on top of things. You could

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argue that the Somerset Levels floods every year. I mean, it does.

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It is just a question of scale. It is the continuing effects of all

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these storms blowing in from the Atlantic. The Metro says, message

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from 10 Downing Street. Apparently, there was a shark in these waters. I

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wonder if there is a connection between the Metro's ability to come

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up with a pun everyday. When they have run out of ponds, we will see

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the floodwaters recede, I suspect! Finally, let's get on to the

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Financial Times. Barclays chief on back foot over bonuses and job cuts.

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They are cutting a lot of jobs at Barclays, and yet the bonuses have

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gone up. It is wearying a familiar. The number of times we have sat here

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and discussed banks paying out huge bonuses. I think there bonus pot was

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2.3 billion. And that is up since last year. As you say, 12,000 jobs

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are being cut at the same time. And the profits they are paying out to

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shareholders are down as well. It has just brought back the whole

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question of bonuses and whether individuals should be rewarded for

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success or failure. Clearly, money is no object here either? Isn't that

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the weird thing? I think Antony Jenkins, the Barclays chief

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executive, is the man probably desperately doing a rain dance at

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the moment. This would be a big splash in the papers if it were not

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for all the flooding. No pun intended with the splash. I think he

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is pleased about that. But it is wearying Lee familiar. When you

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think about the sum involved and how that could help with the flood

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efforts... That is a good idea. He has a reputation as St Anthony, so

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here is a chance for him to keep his halo. You will both be back in an

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hour to look at more headlines on the front pages. Stay with us for

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that. At the top of the hour at 11, much more on the flooding problems

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around the country. Now, time for Sportsday.

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Hello, this is Sportsday. Here is what is coming

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