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mid`fielder and Andy Murray breezes into the third round in the French
Open in tennis. Hello there. Welcome to the look
ahead to the papers tomorrow. With me, David Davies and Anne
Ashworth an assistant editor at the Times. We start with the Express. It
is saying that UK doctors are winning the war against high blood
pressure. The Government is hiring debt
collectors to chase hundreds of thousands of people whose tax
credits were overpaid, according to the Independent. The new Chief
Executive of the NHS has told the Daily Telegraph that there must be
more treatment of patients in the local communities. And the Metro is
reporting that members of a drug gang who lived a luxury lifestyle
have been convicted by a court but ordered to pay ?24. While the
Guardian claims that there is new doubt over Scottish party
calculations over possible future earnings from international
companies. We start David with the independence
independence. A photograph there of a thoughtful looking George W Bush
and the man with his back to us, that, we assume is Mr Tony Blair.
That was at a NATO summit in Prague 2001. Two years before the Iraq war.
We know that all of of the correspondent, the private
correspondent between the two leaders will not be made public in
the Chilcot report. And the reality is that the Chilcot report is very
unlikely now to be published until after the general election, 2015. Of
course it was initiated by Gordon Brown back in 2009. So an
extraordinary period of time. Yes, the Independent has it here on the
front page but I have to say to you, journalists will always, you know, I
was one of them, absolutely publish, publish, publish. We should know.
The Chilcot Inquiry should know. The problem with this, at one level, is
that there are two people in the conversation. There is a man called
the President of the United States. I have to tell you that when you go
around the world and the British demand that this should all be
published, in America a lot of people say, excuse me, there were
two people in a private conversation, maybe you British
don't regard it as private, we do. So, in the future, if this was
published, and my instinct is why has it not been published? The
reality is who is ever going to talk in confidence to a British Prime
Minister again? Anne that is rail politics, and certainly Whitehall
have made it clear that no American President will trust us again if we
publish these. But the families? They are not happy. The phrase
quotes and giveses, ie snippets of the conversation, ie everybody
mentioned in it will be able to have sight of what could be written and
then further reduced. They are not satisfied. They feel this is not
enough. They thought that the Chilcot Inquiry would be a
investigation of the conversations and the deliberations leading up to
the war. That is what we were led to believe.
The word whitewash has appeared on one paper, it has not even been
published yet. And what about the word gives. The
gives? Who is going to give the gives.
What does it even mean? Yes. That is the real problem. But this was
always the potential flaw of the inquiry.
There are, to go back on the first point, there are suggestions that
the Prime Minister is hoping it could be published before the
general election. They are hoping to get it out by the end of the year.
But it could go on and on. And those criticised will have the
chance to answer Chilcot, how long will it take? He is hoping to speed
that up. We will see. Exactly. Now, continuing with the Independent, the
debt collectors hound the poor estover `` the poor estover tax
credits, what is this about? The HMRC has made mistakes and people
pointed out that they are receiving the wrong amount, and then the
taxman says don't worry, they are right. Then HMRC decides that the
wrong amount has been paid out and they are hounding these people for
the money, reclaiming goods, calling them, texting them in a great deal
of distress. It seems that if the mistake by HMRC and the person has
pointed it out, I cannot see how the money should be reclaimed.
And who are these people? They are private debt collectors, hired by
HMRC, phoning the people, targeting them. Some of those targeted say
that they feel harassed and frightened. Who is monitoring the
activity of the private debt collectors, that is the question I
would like answered. We are paying for the operation as taxpayers. I
think we should be told if it is being done properly.
There should be oversight of what is going on. But Iain Duncan Smith, and
those who support the benefit changes, who want the Welfare Bill
to come down, they would say look, we have to do what we can to get
this money back. Also, we want to know if people who
have money that is now due under tax avoidance schemes to be revealed how
will they be chased for the cash? Will they be having people nothing
on their door? I am playing devil's advocate. There has been a debate
about reducing the Welfare Bill. It could be argued that the people who
know how best to do this in chasing up those people who perhaps are over
or have been deemed to have overclaimed or paid too much,
whatever, that you need experts, independent experts who know what
they are doing. People who know this field. And the suggestion could be
that is what is happening but they are getting out of control? I am not
questioning that if the money is owing it should be repaid but
chasing people who cannot pay is that worth anybody's money? It is
not worth the effort. And how it should be done. It is how it is
done. This is the key.
It is not the principle but how it is done that is extremely important.
OK. On to the Guardian. New doubts over Scottish wealth, David. More
figures this week. Everyone is confused. I suspect that the SNP are
confused as much as the UK Government are confused.
What to believe? And for the people who have to make the vote? Anne will
give you a better version of what I can give you of what this is about.
But we are going to get, you will have more and more of these figures.
The "yes" and the "no"... It is hotting up, even our side of the
border, you can see how this is hotting up. I just observe it. I
worry that you are not going to have an overwhelming result we are yes,
or an overwhelming "no". I think that is a dangerous situation.
I think it is interesting. They are not trying to win the battle over
the referendum on hearts and minds anymore. It is not about what it
means to be Scottish. It is what it is worth to you to be Scottish. We
are under an onslought of statistics. Douglas Alexander has
one figure, Danny Alexander has another. And it has been pointed out
that Scottish whiskis either UK or overseas owned, that the profits
could flow elsewhere. They are saying don't look at GDP, look at
GNI, that is a better measure of what all of this is worth to the of
a Raj Scot. On that basis it is less than Alex Salmond is estimating. I
am not sure if we are somewhere in the great debate about who owns what
and what it is worth to the Scots, if we are comparing apples and pears
but I think we should prepare for more of this. It is obviously how it
has been decided that this battle will be fought, through the pockets.
It is really extraordinary. It will be fought, through the pockets.
It is really extraordinary. has been a radical shift this week. The
feeling that you have to quantify to the Scots voter as to whether how
much it is worth him or her to say "yes".
Does it feel that is the wrong tactic? Well far from an Englishman
who has had a few run`ins with the Scots at some football, to tell the
Scots how they ought to be campaigning but Alex Salmond made a
statement saying: Scotland is one of the wealthest countries in the
world. More prosperous per head than the UK, France and Japan. I am sure
he can sub`Stan sheet that claim. `` substantiate that claim but I am
sure that in some ports of the `` parts of the world it woman come as
a surprise. Part of the problem is that it is
not clear how much oil is there in the seas off Scotland.
It is easy to say it is running out quickly but for others to say that
the reserves are there. For the technology to be able to get it
there. Even the whisky is not there, it is
80% overseas or UK`owned. But they are paying taxes, employing
Scottish people to get it made. But still we are having a marc #k0678 ``
microcosm debate here. This is interesting. I like this story. The
sex and the drug trade has added to the GDP figure. The economy is doing
well, partly because of the sex and the drugs trade in the United
Kingdom. This is interesting.
This is about the way that they managed to calculate how much drug
dealing and the heat and the electricity required for its
production. Making a bit of grass! Yeah, how
much is being spent on that, how much is earned in prostitution, how
the figures are collated, we are not told but... We have been told. If we
are to believe the stories we have to be told.
But significantly, GDP. How did they get this data? That is what we would
like to know. What I love is: As economies develop
and evolve, so do the statistics that we use to measure them. Now
that is, it says obviously that they have been deliberating as to whether
or not these unsavoury hidden economy trades should be included
and they have decided yes, if there is enough money made it.
There are specific figures. We are told according to the estimates,
that there are 60,879 sex workers in the UK in 2009. There are more
today. The ONS needs to tell us more about exactly what records it is
keeping. It is coming from a combination of cannabis, cocaine,
ecstasy and amphetamines. And these people do not pay taxes. I can spot
a Nigel Farage line in this story. The move brings us into line with
the European rules. It is all their fault! I forget now the state that
has just legalised the sale in the United States. Maybe it is Oregon.
They have made a fortune in taxes. One wonders if this kind of
information might add grist to the mill of those who believe that you
should have the state make some money out of this. Or have the guys
at the ONS been watching the box set of making bad and thinking, there is
money in a bad substances! It must drive you mad looking at these
figures all day. It is an extraordinary thing. We are going to
leave it there. David, you will be beer back in another hour to look ``
you will be back in an hour to look at more of the stories. On BBC News,
we will be reflecting on the disappointment of some of the
families of soldiers who died in Iraq at the news that the full
details of letters and correspondence between Tony Blair
and George W Bush ran wide Britain went to war will not be published.
Now, time for Sportsday.