News digest 5 January 2015

News digest 5 January 2015

05 January 2015

It’s a happy new year for all as the mass return to work continues, sadly at ever more expensive prices on the trains, although in London today’s journey was made a little easier after the latest round of strike action by bus workers was suspended for talks at Acas. And while that action was suspended workers at posh coat company Barbour are striking from today until the end of the month over forced changes to their contracts. Unite regional officer Fazia Hussain-Brown said: “Barbour’s sign or be sacked ultimatum is bullying and anti-family. Many of the workers struggling to get by on less than the living wage are the sole breadwinner and have family or caring responsibilities. For a company that prides itself on ‘family values’ to seek to railroad through cuts and unsocial changes to their contracts is hypocrisy of the highest order.” Indeed.

And speaking of hypocrisy the other major story in the papers (ignoring the latest scandal to engulf the Royal family which has wall to wall coverage) is the launch of the opening salvoes in the general election campaign. The Tories were first to hit the road with an ad saying don’t damage the ‘road to recovery’, although it seems the poster they used was actually a German road, and one that had been airbrushed. Then again prime minister David Cameron knows a thing or two about airbrushing after his pledge to cut the deficit [another lie featured in the poster] and not the NHS [now facing its gravest winter in years]. The NHS is one of the key pushes from Labour with party leader Ed Miliband set to offer a programme that delivers “hope, not falsehood” listing his priorities as putting working people first, dealing with the deficit and protecting the NHS. At the end of the day it may boil down to how voters feel in their pockets, and with a few papers saying that pay should start to rise this year [although will that only be for those at the top?] there could be some votes in that, but the reality is that most people are still feeling poorer. The proof of that is in a survey from Shelter which says that three million people expect to miss their mortgage or rent payment his month showing the impact of five years of paltry pay rises under the Con-Dem coalition. The important issue is to get out and vote, and there are two contrasting pieces in the Times and Indie. The Times talks of a push by the Tories to challenge the right of foreign [read commonwealth] residents to vote [fearing they will more likely vote Labour] while the Indie reports that young people are neglected by politicians because they do not vote, the answer is register to vote and take action – register to vote here:

Edited by Mik Sabiers

  Morning Star

  Daily Mirror

  Sun (no links all stories now behind paywall)

  • Farage quits booze [for January] (p2)
  • 2.9% pay joy (p2)
  • Millions of Brits on happy pills (p12-13)
  • More petrol price cuts expected (p18



  Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Cameron woos Ukip (p1)
  • We may have to cut defence spending (p2)
  • Election may be decided by votes of foreign residents (p8-9)
  • Farage to have dry January (p23)
  • CBI bias row over public sector cash (p39)
  • Confidence slumps over global uncertainties (p41)
  • Payday lenders have been reined in, but the sharks are still circling – Ian King (p43)
  • John Lewis clicks with customers (p45)




  FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Car carrier deliberately run aground (p1)
  • Massive QE push will not revive eurozone (p1)
  • NHS chief warns of funding backlash (p1)
  • Parties trade election blows (p2)
  • BP braced for Rosneft hit (p15)

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