What the papers say…

A new weekly round-up of random press clippings, compiled for The Voice by former Fleet Street News Editor (and former Liberal News Editor) Philip Young, including snippets you might have missed.

“Almost two million Britons have accepted pay cuts or chosen to work part-time in an attempt to stave-off unemployment as the recession bites. But the desperate measures mean that income tax receipts have collapsed by almost a fifth, and now the Government is facing the biggest peacetime deficit in history. Next week Ministers will confirm that they are likely to borrow close to £180 billion this year – the equivalent of the entire NHS and education budgets combined.” – Daily Telegraph, 5.12.09

“David Cameron and other senior member of the shadow cabinet are keeping quiet about their public school background on the official Conservative Party website. Only three of the 17 Tory shadow ministers who were educated privately disclose their old schools in their biographies. However, 14 of the 15 shadow ministers who went to a comprehensive or grammar school boast of the fact. The disclosure highlights growing concern among senior Conservatives over their privileged backgrounds.” – Daily Telegraph, 5.12.09

“Councils will be able to give priority to long-term residents over new immigrants when allocating social housing under Government plans designed to take on the British National Party. At present, those with the greatest need are automatically able to jump housing queues. The scheme is the latest in a series of attempts by the Government to address the growing dissatisfaction white working class areas that ministers fear is leading to a growth in BNP support.” – Daily Telegraph, 5.12.09

“If the bankers walk, let them. Sensible parents don’t panic and surrender when tolders start throwing their toys out of the pram, screaming the place down. And the Government must not give in to the bankers tantrums. The public are outraged by the RBS Directors trying to hold the Government to ransom.” – Daily Mirror front-page, 5.12.09

“David Cameron is facing a growing challenge to his authority from senior members of his own party who say they have doubts about the Conservatives’ stance on global warming. Leading figures including Peter Lilley, the former cabinet minister, Andrew Tyrie and Ann Widecombe are openly questioning the political consensus on climate change.” – The Independent, 2.12.09

“More than one in three children will be penalised under controversial Tory plans to give tax breaks to married couples. Around 36 per cent of UK youngsters are raised by either by single parents, or couples who are not wed. And those 4.5 million children will suffer under David Cameron’s plans to exclude their Mums and Dads from tax breaks promoting marriage.” – Daily Mirror, 2.12.09

“Vince Cable has said you can not put a mansion in a suitcase and take it to Monaco. The Liberal Democrats have proposed that all those earning less than £10,000 a year should be taken out of the income tax system altogether. The idea of taking four million of the lowest earners out of the tax bracket is a good one. The role of a third party is not to pretend it is preparing for Government, it is to make the other parties think. The day may come when a future government will be glad of Mr. Cable’s advice. – The Times leader-column, 1.12.09

“The number of primary schools where all pupils leave with a decent grasp of English and Maths has slumped by a fifth, the latest league table suggests. In a bitter blow for Labour, official rankings also indicate a sharp rise in the number of schools providing sub-standard education. The amount spent on state education has risen by 43 per cent since 2000, to £64 billion, but school productivity, calculated on the basis of outputs such as GCSE results, and the number of pupils educated, has dipped by 7.5 per cent.” – Daily Telegraph, 2.12.09

“Our plans represent the most radical and far reaching tax reforms for a generation, Nick Clegg said yesterday. “They embody everything the Liberal Democrats stand for, fairness, protecting the environment, and rewarding hard work.” – Daily Telegraph, 1.12.09

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