07/01/2016 The Papers


07/01/2016

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


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Transcript


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Gulliver knocks out the defending women's champion. The latest tennis

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news from Qatar. That is coming up in 15 minutes.

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Hello and welcome to our look ahead to what the papers

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With me are Rowena Mason, the political correspondent at the

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Guardian, and Ben Chu, the economics editor at the Independent.

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The FT leads on the turmoil in global financial markets.

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The Metro reports on the killing of the actress Sian Blake

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The Express focuses on house prices and the threat

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The Independent says Whitehall officials signed off a controversial

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letter by the NHS's top independent medic, questioning whether striking

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junior doctors would be available to help in the event of a Paris-style

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The Telegraph says health chiefs have been criticised

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for producing nanny state alcohol guidelines that warn people against

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The Guardian leads with that new advice.

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The Times leads on the Syrian town besieged by President Assad's

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forces, where 40,000 people are in danger of starving to death.

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And the Mail says an organisation that backed

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Jihadi John is now targeting young Muslims at their universities.

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The Financial Times. Is China sneezing and we are about to catch a

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cold? That is the worry because China has clearly had another

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terrible day with its markets falling and having to freeze its

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stock markets for the second time in a very short period and concerns

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have been expressed today by George Osborne that there is this dangerous

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cocktail of potential risks. The prospect of a global slowdown that

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could affect us over here. The British economy has been doing OK by

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several measures. Record job figures... The Chancellor says all

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of this is in jeopardy now and that it might not necessarily be his

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fault. It tends to do this when there are doubts about the strength

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of the global economy. He will say that the UK for all the progress we

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have made is not immune from global headwind. He did that during the

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Greek crisis last year. I think it is essentially an insurance policy.

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It is not that he expects things to fall apart but if they do, it will

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be able to say that he specifically warned about these dangers and no

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one can accuse him of being complacent. That is what he has done

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today in Cardiff. In terms of the economics of it, it is all down to

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the Chinese stock market falling and the domino effect. That is ironic

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because there is no real correlation between the Chinese stock market and

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the Chinese economy, which is the second biggest economy in the

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world. If that stutters, that really will affect us. But it is not clear

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there is any link between the Chinese stock market and the Chinese

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economy. Is it that their economy is in turmoil or is having problems

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because there is not enough growth in the economy? What is the issue if

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it is not the market? China is a big source of global demand for

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commodities but increasingly services and everything else.

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Because we are an increasingly globalised economy, if the world's

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second-biggest economy slows down, not even goes into recession, just

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to slows down, that can have big effects. That is what people are

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reading into the stock market frenzy. They think there is

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something more serious happening in China. As a political correspondent,

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the state of the British economy and the stewardship of it by George

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Osborne, that very much determines whether he will be running the party

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when David Cameron steps down. That is right. He will be in with a much

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better shot if people see him as a safe pair of hands, particularly in

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a time of economic turmoil, so it suits him to be able to point to

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external events such as this potential slowdown in China as the

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cause of any potential problems in the UK. If you look at what Labour

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is saying, John McDonnell turned the Chancellor's metaphor on its head,

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saying that if there is a dangerous economic cocktail, it is George

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Osborne himself who has been mixing it. He says it is the level had

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consumer debt and overseas borrowing and things like that that will cause

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possible problems of the UK. -- the level of consumer debt. Whitehall

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officials sexing up the case against junior doctors. We know that they

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will be going on strike next Tuesday and this feeds into the acrimony

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between the two sides in this dispute. Yes. A very senior figure

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in NHS England wrote quite an incendiary open letter directed at

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the junior doctors in November, saying that if there was another

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Paris style attack and you were on strike, can we have any guarantees

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you would be able to get back insufficiently QuickTime to help

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those who were injured? The junior doctors took great umbrage at this,

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saying that this was undermining their credibility as doctors. And

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they always suspected Jeremy Hunt had something to do with this. They

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seem to have found the evidence that he did have something to do with

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this, that this was a co-ordinated piece of propaganda, if you like, on

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the Health Secretary to undermine the image of the doctors and prevent

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them from going on strike. This is a fantastic story and it really

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emphasises what a massive public relations battle the whole thing

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is. They both want the public with them. Sir Bruce Keogh, who is

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supposed to be independent, one might assume that he would have from

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time to time consultations with the Secretary of State as well as the

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BMA. That is true. He is a member of the medical establishment, so he

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does have an interest in trying to prevent the strike from going ahead,

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but some of the language being used in these exchanges... One official

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said that the risk of a major incident should be pressed quite

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strongly in the media wants the strikers announced their intention

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and Sir Bruce Keogh should be as hard edged as he could be on that.

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It seems that they were egging him on. To sex it up. One could say

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that. Alcohol guide. Health chiefs attacked over nanny state alcohol

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guides. And quite tough as well, these new suggestions on the part of

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the authorities on how much alcohol we should be consuming. I don't

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often find myself agreeing with libertarian think-tanks, and when I

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saw their name mentioned in this article... But we are talking about

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booze! LAUGHTER. On this one, they do have a point. The recommended

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weekly allowance of alcohol is down from 20 minutes to 14 units, which

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works out to about a pint a day. -- 20 units. But the evidence does not

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seem particularly strong. It does seem that the medical establishment

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has taken it upon itself to decide that the level of safe risk is lower

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than many people are consuming. That is fair enough if this were not

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sanctified as being official advice. If people could make it

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their own mind, that would be fine, but the scientific evidence of risk

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does not necessarily back this up. Yes, but it is incumbent on any

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society to protect its citizens and if the authorities feel that

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drinking a pint a day... It is obviously a strongly held view.

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There have been many warnings in recent years some experts on alcohol

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that everybody is drinking too much and there has been a lot of pressure

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on the government to bring in minimal alcohol pricing. --

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minimum. There is no getting away from the fact that we do have a

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large health problem with alcohol in our society. We might not like it,

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but they are telling us that is what is best for us. Is there a

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psychological thing going on? They say that scientifically maybe two

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points of the cable will tell everyone is on point because we know

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they will want to have 2 bytes. -- ten pints will be OK but we will

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tell everyone that one pint is the... -- two types. You have got to

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treat people like adults and say that these are the scientific risks

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that we know about. Be informed but take the decision yourself. The

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Guardian. Clinton and Tony Blair's special relationship. Transcripts of

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conversations they had when they were both in power have been

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released. This is fascinating. I would advise anyone to go and read

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the complete transcripts of these conversations. This article is full

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of eliminating snippets of conversation, including the death of

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Princess Diana. -- illuminating. They are calling each other body --

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bud and mate. You sometimes wonder how they found the time for all of

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this medicine in Smalltalk, but it is really interesting. And at the

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same time, -- all of this small talk but it is really interesting. He was

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certainly comfortable with whoever was in the White House. Remember

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that famous advice he gave to the Washington ambassador? To get up the

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cars of the White House and stay there. -- to get up the INAUDIBLE.

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I'm sorry? ! I'm not sure there is anything that is particularly

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surprising here. What isn't it surprising is the prescience of Bill

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Clinton talking about stateless terrorists. This was back in 1997.

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He was spot on about that being an evolving threat. And he talked about

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his concerns for the children of Princess Diana at the time, that

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they would have a tough time in life. Yes. There is a conversation

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that happened just after the death of Princess Diana in which Tony

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Blair was calling her a rock of stability in the sense that she

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connected with the outside world. Talking about how William is quite

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like her. Clinton replies by saying that he feels so bad for her. He

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says she was just getting hold of her life... The Mirror. The ?2.7

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billion pension cash grab. Experts warn that poverty may follow. I did

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see quite a few Lamborghinis... Apparently lots of pensioners are

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cashing in pensions. Is a sense, this is what the Chancellor wanted

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to happen when he unveiled his organisation policy. He wanted --

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liberalisation policy. He wanted people to take control of their

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money. There were concerns at the time that everyone would spend

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irresponsibly and would have to fall back on state support in later

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years. These figures out today suggest that many people did draw

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money down and that a minority bought annuities with them. I'm not

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clear what people will do with the money they have drawn down. They may

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invest it. It is not quite a clear slam dunk, saying that people have

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gone crazy and behaved irresponsibly, but I do think that

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the most important statistic to come out of this is that only 20% of

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people consulted the government advised that this about what to do.

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That is the same to watch. -- the thing to watch. And talking about

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pensioners, although not you specifically, the Daily Mail. Still

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sprightly at 183. The oldest creature on earth. This is Jonathan

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the tortoise. He has recently been living a healthy, low alcohol

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lifestyle. And he has a new lease of life after being put on a more

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nutritious diet of apples, carrots, cucumbers and guava. I just wonder

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if he has drawn down his pension yet. Yellow Lamborghini in the back

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of the photograph. Coming up next,

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it's time for Sportsday.

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