News digest 10 December 2012

News digest 10 December 2012

10 December 2012

There’s no single story dominating today’s headlines. The digest opens with internal changes in the union movement with the Sun reporting on last week’s announcement that GMB general secretary Paul Kenny is to stand down, while the Guardian reports on a row over the TUC’s planned appointment of a deputy general secretary; the role will no longer exist. The Guardian also reports Unite general secretary Len McCluskey has announced he is standing for re-election after the Unite Executive Council last week voted to bring forward the 2015 general secretary election to avoid any clash with the UK general election. More details on the election.

Elsewhere there’s quite a bit of coverage for Willie Walsh, head of International Airlines group. He has laid into the government saying that Osborne has no strategy for growth and says that Britain faces a decade of decline. IAG is however facing its own pressures as Walsh - never shy of taking on unions – is embroiled in a bitter row over his plan to scrap 4,500 jobs at the Spanish flag carrier Iberia. He should have learned by now that conflict only creates more trouble, and it is better to listen to people than tell them what you want to say…

That could sum up the Tory party which is veering back towards internal warfare. A number on the Tory right have come out against proposed changes allowing same sex couples to marry. One MP David Davies [not the former leadership contender] is involved in a row after he claimed that most parents do not want their children to be homosexual, yes, it’s still the nasty party.

And that can be seen by chancellor George Osborne’s benefit trap for Labour. As Labour looks to be building a gradual alternative to the Con-Dem cuts Ed Miliband has vowed to fight the latest round of benefit cuts which will see many people in work under greater pressure. This could be a strong dividing line for Labour, let’s hope the party sticks to its guns.

The other big political row exercising Tories is over the legalisation of hard drugs after a committee of MPs said the country needs a royal commission to consider the alternatives to Britain’s failing drug laws. The Mirror headline says it is high time drugs were legal. And talking of headlines Tory leadership contender in all-but-name, Boris Johnson, seems to be wading into different territory as he says Britain should get fracking, not sure if he wrote that piece late at night but with the dangers of making the earth move it may be best left alone.

 Morning Star

 Daily Mirror




 Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Police seek move into cafes and churches (p1)
  • Osborne has no strategy for growth, says BA boss (p10)
  • On the bus, jobless told (p5) [free bus travel for unemployed but only for one month]
  • Major backs Cameron over gay marriage (p15)
  • Conservatives should embrace gay marriage – Tim Montgomerie (p23)
  • Inflation focus too narrow for new Bank of England governor (p35)
  • Milford haven counts cost of gas shortage (p43)
  • Banks braced for more job cuts (p43)



·         David Cameron urged to take 'now or never' step on drugs reform (p1)

·         Labour strikes first to unveil Leveson plan (p1)

·         Unemployed people to get free bus travel in attempt to help them find work (p4)

·         John Major joins prominent Tories backing gay marriage in church (p4)

·         Coalition tries to play down Vince Cable's warning of triple-dip recession (p6)

·         Troubled Astute submarine programme to get another £2.7 billion (p7)

·         Benefits cuts row intensifies between parties (p9)

·         Labour's six pillars of wisdom to regulate the press (p10)

·         Charity crisis: slump in value of £1m-plus donations (p15)

·         Virgin Atlantic expands into Scotland as Branson looks to give up control (p24)

·         Unemployment could rise by 200,000 in 2013, says thinktank (p25)

·         TUC scraps post of deputy general secretary after 'graduates only' row (p25) – Len McCluskey cited

·         Drinks giant Diageo seeks to buy slice of US whiskey distiller Beam (p26)

·         Rolls-Royce faces bribery claim inquiry (p28)

  • Older women: The nation’s great untapped resource – Jackie Ashley (p31)


 FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • US and UK unveil plan to deal with failed banks (p1)
  • Civil service rejects ministerial role (p2)
  • Coalition increases dash for gas (p2)
  • MoD awards troubled submarine contract (p2)
  • Regions boosted by bank plans to shift 3,000 jobs out of City (p4)
  • Rolls-Royce bribery claims date to 2006 (p18)
  • Delta and Virgin set to unveil tie up (p18)
  • Tender threat to De La Rue (p18)
  • Siemens sticks to savings pledge (p20)
  • Virgin strengthens its grip on healthcare (p22)
  • Unilever in funding boost for media fledglings (p23)

 Edited by Mik Sabiers

Comment on this story