News digest 5 September 2014

News digest 5 September 2014

05 September 2014

Today’s digest opens with a trail for the annual Trades Union Congress, being held in Liverpool this year. TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady is interviewed in the FT and outlines why politicians and policymakers should place a greater focus on real pay levels and living standards when considering the wider economy and [in the Bank of England’s case] setting interest rates. Pushing the theme based on ‘Britain needs a pay rise’, Unite will be leading calls for the restoration of collective bargaining as central to arresting the yawning wage inequality and growing in-work poverty which are blighting the lives of millions of Britons. Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “At last, with 243 days to go until the general election, the people of the UK can hope to see the back of this miserable coalition government. It’s mindless policies have driven down living standards, caused misery to millions and actually do not work. People are working harder, but getting poorer – and yet George Osborne borrows more to take us backwards. By any measure, this government is a failure. Its time is up.” Indeed it should be…

And while O’Grady was calling for interest rates to remain low until living standards rise, yesterday the European Central Bank listened and cut rates as the elusive recovery forced the bank to take greater action to try and stimulate the eurozone economy. Back in the UK the Guardian reports that manufacturing and finance job losses are the reason behind the fall in wages, while the Sun reports that pay has been hit as the new jobs created are poor quality, the Mail also reports on how O’Grady talked of the lack of prospects in the workplace but in its usual nasty way then goes on to quote how much trade union general secretaries are paid – no mention of bosses of big companies – and the FT has an interesting piece that says women will overtake men in the skilled jobs market, but will the gender pay gap close?

On the political front a number of papers report that David Lammy plans to run to be Labour’s candidate for London mayor, while the Sun says current mayor Boris Johnson faces pressure over his hoped for Uxbridge seat [perhaps he should get over his cowardice and run in Clacton], the nasty side of the Tory party is shown in the Moring Star and Mirror which report the new education secretary Nicky Morgan will not rule out schools being run for profit [what will they do – make the children sell cakes made in domestic science or put them out on chain gangs mending potholes in the road as supposed work experience?]. And still on schools and deputy prime minister Nick Clegg was taken to task over his ‘expensive and unhealthy’ free school meals policy by a nine year old boy, Clegg’s response: “You probably need to go back to class.” Yes really. But the Lib Dems do have a chance to make a difference today when one of their own tables a private members’ bill to amend the hated bedroom tax, while Labour will add an amendment to abolish it, will the Lib Dems make one small step towards helping abolish this ill thought through and punitive policy, we can live in hope…

Edited by Mik Sabiers

  Morning Star

  Daily Mirror

  Sun (no links all stories now behind paywall)

  • Boris poll battle (p2)
  • Isil crisis (p10-11)
  • Jobs up, pay hit (p24) [TUC trail]



  Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Let us come home, say British jihadists (p1)
  • Switching to e-cigs would save 50,000 smokers a year (p4)
  • We could bomb within weeks, Cameron tells cautious Obama (p6-7)
  • Don’t defect to Ukip, Gove urges MPs (p14)
  • Nuclear closures could cause blackouts (p29)
  • BI in Deepwater pain (p43)
  • Draghi adopts QE (p45)
  • Pennycook to lead Co-op (p46)
  • Skills gap sparks fresh demand for visa reform (p47)




  FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • ECB cuts rates (p1)
  • Future of the union (p2)
  • Horsemeat report calls for ‘food fraud’ division (p2)
  • Frances O’Grady interviewed (p3)(p)
  • Women to overtake men in skilled jobs market (p3)
  • Nuclear plant warning (p4)
  • The world is marching back from globalisation – Philip Stephens (p13)
  • Unequal societies are an uncharted economic threat – Gillian Tett (p13)
  • Co-op group hails turning point (p17)
  • Germany plans IT catch up with US (p19)
  • Setback at United Spirits (p22)
  • Betfair eyes boom (p22)

Comment on this story