19/07/2017 The Papers


19/07/2017

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.


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

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With me are the broadcaster Lynn Faulds Wood and the deputy political

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editor of the Daily Telegraph, Ben Riley-Smith.

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The Metro leads with the publishing of the wages of the BBC's top

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earners, with Chris Evans allegedly admitting that the disparity in pay

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BBC pay also dominates the front page of the Sun, which reports

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friction between colleagues following the publication

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On the same story, the Express claims differences in pay along

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lines of gender has caused anger among some BBC employees.

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And has led to criticism from Theresa May, who has called

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on the BBC to do more to ensure parity in pay between men and women,

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The Telegraph claims that the Government has warned

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the BBC that its highest-paid male stars must take a wage

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In other news, the i leads with the unexpected decision

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by ministers to increase the state pension age by a year to 68.

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So, let's kick off. The Guardian - backlash as the BBC's male stars

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dominate the top palest. I've got a better story than that. The BBC's

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story dominates, but the pension story is important. The pension

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story is important to me, because it doesn't affect me, but young Ben

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here... Sorry, it's your generation that is going to lose out.

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Basically, John Cridland at the Confederation of British Industry

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has written a report saying that we all need to work longer, not until

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60 but until 69. You will get your pension at 68 eventually. So what

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will you do in all of those years way you do not have the job any

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more? Where are we going to find jobs for people as they get older?

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Am I going to go on the buses? And if older people stay in their jobs,

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does that mean fewer jobs for young people? That's the danger. It was a

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surprise announcement today. When you get to the end of the

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parliament, the government tends to rush out the bad news. Was it a

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deliberate bit of timing? It's true that in the final couple of days

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before a holiday, you will see a slew of documents published, written

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statements by ministers, and perhaps it's not accidental timing. It

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affects a lot of people. If you are in your late 30s or 40s, you will

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have to wait an extra year to get your state pension. There is this

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debate about intergenerational fairness. Let's not go there. AgeUK

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were very sympathetic to you. They said it is picking the pockets of

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the under 40s, like you. It's terribly difficult. You cannot kill

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people off. We have to pay for it somehow. And Germany found their

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answer was to invite a lot of other people from other countries to come

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over. There -- it is based on the idea of increased life expectancy.

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There was a report recently saying that life expectancy had stalled, as

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had investment into the NHS. There is an interesting point about

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intergenerational fairness. Successive governments have done a

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brilliant job of driving down poverty in older people in the last

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20 or 25 years, that there is a growing problem of working people in

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poverty. This is an attempt to help that a bit. If you are waiting to 68

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until you get your pension and you haven't got a job, that's a lot of

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money in benefits. The story on the BBC dominating pretty much every

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front page, including the Metro. Chris Evans revealed to be the top

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earner on ?2.2 million for his Radio 2 show. Is he worth it? I heard on

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the BBC yesterday or the day before, Chris Evans saying, or something he

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said a year ago, he said that he didn't care about money, he would do

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it for... And he stopped himself from saying nothing. 2.2 million is

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nothing. We should ring him up and asked if he will work for nothing!

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The reporting of top stars' salaries, has that damage the BBC,

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or is that transparency that will somehow help the BBC? The assumption

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at the beginning of the day was that it would damage it. These are big

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numbers. Stars at the top of television. What do you think? I

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think... I will have a gin and tonic as well. I think the way the BBC has

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handled it, on its shows, it is ruthlessly interviewing people at

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the top of the company. There is an open market, and the BBC have said

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they are pitched below the open market for some. And the apparent

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gender inequalities that have been focused on for the last day or so.

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The Telegraph has got a brilliant one, where they show that most of

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the top paid stars are men, and here we have Dan Walker on 250,000, and

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Louise mentioned, who is not listed. She must earn less than a. He comes

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from sport. I think sport is still male dominated. But he makes more on

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his salary because he does sport. It is not always like-for-like. For the

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average person looking at all the disparities, it doesn't say exactly

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what it is for next to the salary. Dan pointed out that they get paid

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the same, but he does Football Focus and other programmes. The Sun have

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chosen to ignore that. Let's look at the Telegraph. This hammers home the

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point of the day which is the question about gender equality.

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There is only one who squeaks in at the bottom of the top nine. When you

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look at the whole 90 or 100 people who earn above ?100,000, there's

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only a third... That is true across all the economy. I worked at the BBC

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for ten years as a presenter, and I don't think I will have featured on

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the list. The eight menu feature on here I think are all white,

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middle-aged blokes. Yes, the lack of representation at the top is

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questionable. But when you look at a lot of different industries... But

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to praise Tony Hall, he's really doing something about it. He says

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that he wants complete gender equality within the BBC by 2020. Is

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that achievable? Of course it is, if you want to achieve something.

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Ethnicity is important as well. Not just gender equality? No, gender and

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ethnicity. There is a debate about whether this will drive up prices,

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because people want to match other people's salaries, or it could drive

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down prices, because this fundamentally is money. And how this

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looks to the public. There is a debate about which way this will go.

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How do you choose? Is it marketplace, or you can do audit on

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them? I used to do watchdog. Do you give people who get big audiences

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more money than people who don't? I don't think so. It is just the

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marketplace of presenters and how good you are. But overall, this

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transparency, which the BBC was forced into, has it been a good

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exercise? Should other media organisations also be transparent?

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But they are not paid by the public. There is some public funding on

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Channel 4. The great buzzword is taxpayers' money. When you look at

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all the top departments, I know political advisers who earn below

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six figures and they have to publish what they get. Some of them were

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saying, we have this transparency and it is the same cash. We are

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moving into an era of transparency, and a big corporation opening itself

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up probably does benefit. And a nice cartoon in the Telegraph. Two

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newsreaders, and man and a woman, in the studio. And now my mail

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colleague will read the autocue more expensively! It is a classic

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cartoon. Let's move off BBC pay and onto the Sun. They have the Prime

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Minister sacked threat to Cabinet. Is she threatening to sack some of

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the Cabinet, all of the Cabinet? There is no such thing as an

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understacker born minister. We have had days of infighting and private

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conversations becoming public, things being leaked. It gives a

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sense of a government in chaos. The Prime Minister has already lost her

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majority in an election she called off her own accord, so she is trying

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to calm the nerves a bit, and say that if these people carry on in

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fighting... Whose nerves is she going to calm by saying, I could

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sack the lot of you? There is no such thing as an understacker will

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Prime Minister either. Somebody called Charles Walker, vice-chair of

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the 1922 committee - do you know what that is? Somehow or other we

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have to modernise what is happening in Parliament. Why is this a

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committee with influence? It is a committee of backbenchers, set up in

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1922. There is an interesting point, she doesn't have the power to sack

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Cabinet ministers. Page two of the Times. Britons eat 50% more sugar

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than they admit. The average man thinks he eats a lot less, but he

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eats 32 spoonfuls of sugar, was it a week, a day? Huge amounts. Measured

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through something called bio markers, found a big link between

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high sugar diet and obesity. I think we all knew that, but we didn't know

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how much sugar we eat. I would fall into that category, because of fruit

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juice, fruity yoghurt 's... Fruit yoghurts is shocking. It is. You

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should have read my column is about 30 years ago. Good health advice

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from both of you. Thanks for being with us.

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Don't forget, you can see the front pages of the papers online

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It's all there for you, seven days a week, at bbc.co.uk/papers.

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And if you miss the programme any evening you can watch it

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