Friday, 8 June 2012
NEWS SNIPPETS 8TH JUNE 2012
The Telegraph - Cameron: I'll protect Britain from European superstate
David Cameron promises to 'protect' Britain from German plans for a eurozone superstate with common banking and political systems.
The Prime Minister dismissed as “nonsense” a suggestion from Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, that the European Union should eventually have a single national identity and described as “nonsense” the idea of loyalty to a common European flag.
Underlining the sceptical message, George Osborne hinted at a referendum on Europe following the euro crisis, saying any “reshaped” relationship with the EU might have to be put to British voters.
He signalled that Britain was prepared to veto a new EU treaty unless it included safeguards for the City.
But Mr Cameron and his Chancellor accepted that the only way to resolve the eurozone crisis was deeper integration between the 17 countries using the single currency, including a new “banking union”.
The Telegraph - BBC's Diamond Jubilee coverage 'misfired', says Clare Balding
The BBC’s coverage of the Diamond Jubilee river pageant “misfired” after executives decided that “looking at boats for however many hours might be dull”, Clare Balding said yesterday.
Balding became the first presenter involved in the corporation’s coverage to admit its failings, which drew over 2,400 complaints from viewers.
One theme of the complaints was that many of the presenters, who included Fearne Cotton and Matt Baker, were ill-informed and that there was precious little information about the flotilla.
Balding, who presented from the royal rowbarge, Gloriana, was one of the few BBC names to emerge from the event with any credit.
And in a piece of advice that her colleagues could do well to heed, she said: “My belief is always that facts are my friend. And I will make sure, because I’ve done so much sports broadcasting, that I know stuff you the audience wouldn’t necessarily know and I can tell you something.
“And if you ever hear me say, ‘The atmosphere here is wonderful’ - shoot me. Because I don’t think you need me to tell you that.” See Article
The Telegraph - Euro 2012: British government ministers to boycott Ukraine over country's human rights record
Ministers are boycotting the initial stages of Euro 2012 over concerns about human rights in Ukraine.
The Foreign Office said the government ''fully supported'' the England team's participation in the tourname
But no ministers will be attending group stage matches in Ukraine amid anger over the treatment of jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko.
The move comes after other European countries including Germany and France announced that senior politicians would boycott games played in Ukraine - which is co-hosting the event with Poland - unless the human rights situation under President Viktor Yanukovych improved.
Tymoshenko was jailed for seven years last year after what supporters claim was a show trial.
The former prime minister staged a hunger strike in April after photos appeared showing bruises on her body. She has accused prison guards of assaulting her.See Article
The Telegraph - Gas ‘better than wind’ for low carbon, Policy Exchange claims
Building gas-fired power plants instead of more offshore wind farms could actually lead to greater carbon savings at a lower cost, a leading think-tank has claimed.
In a report today, Policy Exchange argued that the government should scrap 4GW of its planned 13GW target for offshore wind generation by 2020.
By building cheaper gas generation instead it could save £700-£900m a year in costs that would have been passed onto billpayers, it calculated.
These savings could be redeployed by insulating hundreds of thousands more homes and doubling public funding for research and development in key low-carbon technologies, it said.
That would still leave enough money to “buy and retire sufficient carbon permits each year to reduce emissions by six times as much as the 4GW of offshore wind”.
It argued: “To achieve maximum overall emissions reduction and low carbon innovation, the electricity market needs to be allowed to invest in gas as a transition fuel, subject to a long-term EU emissions cap.” See Article
The Daily Express - WE MUST STOP GERMANY NOW
DEMANDS were growing last night for Britain to act to halt Germany’s relentless march towards creating a European superstate.
Fury erupted after German Chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday cranked up her plans for political union.
On the day she met David Cameron in Berlin to try to tackle the eurozone crisis, she declared: “We need more Europe. We don’t only need monetary union, we also need a so-called fiscal union. And most of all we need a political union, which means we need to gradually cede powers to Europe and give Europe control.”
Her comments added weight to the Daily Express crusade to get Britain out of the EU. And they triggered a chorus of calls for the Prime Minister to stand up to Germany’s desire to dominate.
Tory MP Philip Davies said: “The euro is beyond fixing, it is a busted flush. The sooner they accept that the better. We don’t need more politics to sort the problem. This Soviet-style political project has failed.”
Fellow Conservative backbencher Douglas Carswell said: “The German taxpayer is going to be extremely reluctant to take on eurozone debt. See Article
The Daily Express - ARMY’S MERCENARY FUTURE
THE Army will have to rely on help from mercenaries and foreign soldiers in future wars, the Defence Secretary announced yesterday.
Regiments face being axed or merged as part of Government plans to reduce the number of Army personnel from 102,000 to 82,000 by 2020.
Private military contractors, Nato allies and Territorial Army reservists doubled to 38,000 with a £1.8billion investment will plug the gaps, Philip Hammond told the Royal United Services Institute.
Mr Hammond outlined plans for civilians to provide “logistics support” for frontline soldiers. Vital tasks such as catering may be out-sourced, he said, with Britain relying on foreign powers in other areas like transport.
Mr Hammond told his audience that the Army will “rethink the way we deliver every aspect of military effect in order to maximise capability at the front line”.
He said the Army was looking “to others to provide the tail where Britain is concentrating on providing the teeth”. See Article
The Daily Express - GIVE US A VOTE ON EU DEMANDS LORD OWEN
FRESH pressure for a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU was given extra weight yesterday when senior statesman Lord Owen said voters must be given a chance to throw off the “shackles” of Brussels.
The former Labour Foreign Secretary said it was time to ask the public what type of Europe they want to belong to.
In a new book, he proposes giving people the chance to decide whether Britain would be better off leaving the EU to become part of a new and wider single market stretching from Iceland to Turkey.
He envisages that the country could be part of a reformed “European Community” open to all EU and European Free Trade Association members as well as Turkey.
Leaving the current EU would see Westminster regaining control from Brussels over key policy areas including agriculture, fisheries and industrial policy as well as social, foreign and security matters.
Meanwhile the new EU would be an inner core of nations which use or are committed to using the single currency and having “to all intents and purposes, though not in name, a single government”. See Article
The Daily Express - 10 SOMALIS LIVE FREE IN £2M HOME
A FAMILY of 10 Somalis are living in a £2million townhouse in one of Britain’s most expensive streets – without it costing them a penny.
The Georgian property – yards from former prime minister Tony Blair’s home – has been let by a Left-wing council at £1,000 a month, a fraction of the market rate.
But because they all receive housing benefit and income support they effectively get the mansion for free.
Islington Council in London spent £100,000 renovating the four-storey house which has distinctive period features including chandeliers.
A similar home rented privately would cost at least £8,000.
A council spokesman described the family as in “great housing need”.
Emma Boon of the TaxPayers’ Alliance said: “Many hard-working taxpayers will be astonished. It’s completely unfair.” See Article
The Daily Mail - Cameron will hand Scots control of 70 per cent of all money it raises as a 'reward' if they reject independence
David Cameron wants to offer Scotland control of 70 per cent of all money it raises if it votes against independence, it was claimed last night.
The Prime Minister is said to be prepared to hand over more fiscal responsibility to Scotland if its population rejects breaking up the Union.
Scotland currently controls 6 per cent of the revenue it raises, but the Prime Minister wants to raise this to 70 per cent, according to reports in The Spectator magazine. See Article
The Daily Mail - Calls to stop British aid money pouring into Argentina: Country owes UK taxpayers £225MILLION
Argentina owes British taxpayers £225 million, it emerged, as the government faced calls to halt any further support to the aggressor country.
Ministers have been urged to oppose any further World Bank loans to Argentina, after an escalation of tension over the Falkland Islands and a threatened boycott of British goods.
The World Bank - which Britain is a major shareholder of - has shelled out £10.4 billion in loans to Argentina. The UK’s share of this is over £225 million, according to parliamentary answers given to Tory MP Priti Patel. See Article