News digest 27 November 2013

News digest 27 November 2013

27 November 2013

The digest starts in Scotland, which features in many of the papers after first minister Alex Salmond launched his blueprint for Scottish independence. Salmond urged Scotland's four million voters to seize a "once-in-a-generation" chance to create a fairer, more prosperous country by voting to leave the UK promising to cut corporation tax, extend free childcare and increase the minimum wage. Unite Scottish secretary Pat Rafferty said: “The Scottish government has offered some welcome proposals that will contribute towards the wider debate, not least keeping public services in public hands, improved childcare provision … and the abolition of the coalition’s Bedroom Tax … greater detail will be required on important issues such as pension protections and the pursuit of a fairer system of taxation. Unite has consistently said throughout this process ‘let the people decide’ and, while many people are probably no nearer to deciding whether Scotland should be an independent country or not, this an important development.”

Back down in Westminster and there’s much talk of plebs after ex-minister Andrew Mitchell accused the police officer at the centre of the ‘plebgate' row of "not telling the truth" at a press conference. Whether that was wise is another matter as the Crown Prosecution Service has now charged one officer over the allegation that he falsely claimed to have witnessed the incident in an email to his MP. The Independent Police Complaints Commission also confirmed five police officers - all from the elite Diplomatic Protection Group - will face gross misconduct proceedings. Remember, Mitchell has admitted that he swore during the incident where he was stopped from cycling through Downing Street's ‘Thatcher’ gates, he just denies he swore (directly) at officers or called them plebs…

But why he tries to prove he only swore under his breath, ordinary people are still struggling to get by. The cost of living crisis comes home to 31,100 people who died due to last winter’s cold, campaigners are now warning that the death toll could rocket this winter as energy bills jump ever higher and a prolonged cold snap is expected. Remember the energy giants are making £63 profit out of every customer.

And the Indie looks at how millions of workers are caught in the low-pay trap as a survey shows that three quarters of people on low wages have been badly paid for a whole decade, time to raise the minimum wage.

And the future is not bright for our youth as according to the Guardian ‘young jobless are facing poverty in old age’ as the scourge of youth unemployment impacts the viability of pensions, the poor level of pay in the UK sees the Telegraph note that only Mexico has a worse state pension than the UK.

But hey someone’s doing well, many papers report on Vince Cable’s appearance before today’s business committee over the Royal Mail sale. Not only has the company reported improved profits today – and that money goes to shareholders not the state – but the bankers that helped sell off the Royal Mail on the cheap are sitting on a tidy profit - £12 million for Goldman Sachs – perhaps the bankers need regulation, well we may get it, as the government lost a vote in the Lords yesterday which could see a system for licensing bankers, well we have to start somewhere…

Edited by Mik Sabiers

 Morning Star

  • Protesters pin blame for 31,000 winter deaths on energy firms (p1)
  • Electrician forced to emigrate due to blacklist (p2)
  • Union warns of collapse in children’s centre funds (p2) – Unite/Dave Munday cited
  • Cable faces questions on mail sale (p4)
  • 350 per cent rise in taxis sent on 999 calls (p5)
  • The Co-op disaster – who is to blame? – Nick Matthews (p9)

  Daily Mirror

  Sun (no links all stories now behind paywall)

  • ‘Pleb’ PC: See you in court (p1/8-9)
  • Scots reveal plan to break up Britain (p2)
  • Clampdown for Romanians and Bulgarians (p10)
  • Banking godfather part II (p21) [RBS customers tell of ordeals]
  • Gatwick calls for second runway (p42)
  • Britvic to put more fizz in staff pay (p42)



  • Cameron to crack down on migration (p1)
  • RBS faces criminal probe (p3)
  • Plebgate coverage (p8-9)
  • Salmond and his fantasy wish list for Scotland (p18-19)
  • Blackout fears (p20)
  • Speak in English, Domino’s tells staff (p25)
  • Tax questions for Co-op boss (p71)
  • Is Npower about to leave the UK? (p72)
  • Argos tests digital shops (p73)




  FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • RBS faces criminal probe (p1)
  • Cameron in attack on EU migration (p2)
  • Future of the union (p2)
  • Mitchell criticises CPS over ‘plebgate’ (p3)
  • Peers back licensing system to control bankers (p4)
  • Greencore earnings rise (p18)
  • Vivendi confirms split (p21)
  • De La Rue downbeat (p22)

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