Today’s digest opens with a clang of prison cell doors as former Lib Dem MP Chris Huhne and his ex-wife Vicky Pryce were both sentenced to jail terms yesterday. All the papers rake over the case and the fall from grace of two people who should have known better and will now have eight months to contemplate their actions, the Mail sums it up as: “He dreamed of being deputy PM. He ‘lied and lied again’ to save his career, now he is starting a new life in jail.” Don’t do the crime if you can’ta take the time.
And from an ex cabinet minister to a vanishing one as chancellor George Osborne is accused of going awol after he failed to turn up for a key debate on banking reforms yesterday. The debate was designed to make the sector safer so expect even less regulation to get through. Osborne is obviously more focused on securing bonuses for senior bankers rather than sorting out the economy, then again it is just over a week until the budget so perhaps he is trying to do his sums, although expect them to not add up as usual…
And not adding up are the cuts as Cameron is under pressure to end the supposed ringfence on health and aid spending as the disgraced ex-defence secretary Liam Fox adds to the call for more cuts. The Telegraph reports that Cameron has said he’ll keep his promise not to cut schools, health or aid, then again we know what happened to his pledge to cut the deficit and not the NHS, so expect more cuts to all the above.
And as the Morning Star reports that 380,000 council workers have paid for the Con-Dem cuts with their jobs, the FT reports that the cuts have gone too far and says the public sector can be expected to grow after ‘over-firing’, yet another ludicrous word as a result of ludicrous policies. Even worse the Guardian reports that for the UK to get back to its pre recession levels it needs to generate an extra 850,000 jobs, not much chance with the Con-Dems addicted to austerity. And the end result of that is discussed in the Mirror as comedian John Bishop trails a land with one in three kids in poverty and millions go hungry. Sadly it’s right here on our doorstep as Bishop outlines Breadline Britain. It’s not funny at all.
However ending on a lighter note the Mirror also has a good story that will cheer any who have had to suffer a fellow traveller shouting on the phone. The paper reports a train passenger was stunned into silence after the driver made a special announcement on the intercom telling her to stop bellowing so loudly on her mobile phone, the women promptly ended her call, and slunk back down in her first class seat…
(no links all stories behind paywall)
- Lending plan ‘put on steroids’ (p1)
- Osborne attacked over City reform bill (p2)
- Huhne and Pryce jailed (p2)
- Credit conundrum (p3)
- Doubt on universal credit holds up reforms (p4)
- Public sector to grow after ‘over-firing’ (p4)
- Lloyds to cut St James’ stake (p15)
- Diageo moves to devolve its supply chain (p16)
- IAG and unions near deal (p16)
- Ladbrokes seals online link (p22)
Edited by Mik Sabiers