Monday, 11 June 2012
NEWS SNIPPETS MONDAY 11TH JUNE 2012
Daily Express - FEAR SPAIN’S £80BN BAILOUT IS NOT ENOUGH TO STOP CRISIS DEEPENING
FEARS were growing last night that the European Union’s £80billion bailout to Spanish banks was not big enough to stop the eurozone debt crisis spiralling out of control.
Treasury officials were anxiously waiting for the opening of money markets around the world late last night to gauge the reaction to the latest multi-billion Brussels rescue package.
But City insiders dismissed the sum as inadequate while critics of the EU condemned the measure as “madness”.
The concern intensified after Chancellor George Osborne signalled the Government’s frustration with the response from the eurozone by warning the crisis was “killing off” Britain’s economic recovery.
As full details of the cash injection to Spanish banks were released yesterday, the country’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy claimed the rescue was a victory for the euro. “The future of the euro won, the stability of our financial system won,” he said.
But Lloyds Banking Group economist Charles Diebel said the move was “bailout-lite” and asked: “Will it be enough? That’s questionable as it is still prevention rather than cure and again only keeps the banking sector alive rather than really supporting growth.” See Article
Daily Express - QUEEN SAVES COUNTRYSIDE
THE Queen’s Diamond Jubilee is creating a green legacy that will last for a thousand years.
Long after the bunting has come down and the street party tables have been put away, the countryside will benefit from a host of conservation projects.
Jubilee woodlands, coastal marshlands, upland bogs, wetlands and even bee-friendly patches in busy towns are being unrolled as vital sanctuaries for some of our
most threatened creatures and vanishing plants. From the iconic red grouse, a bird found only on British heather moors, to the glorious purple emperor butterfly with its wings of shimmering violet, the sanctuaries will help protect and nurture hundreds of species at risk from 21st-century development.
There are even hopes that a bird bearing all three colours of the Union Flag, the white-spotted Bluethroat, will be attracted to our shores at a new Jubilee Marsh at Wallasea Island in Essex from its nesting areas across the Channel. See Article. (UKIP Editor's note, this sounds frighteningly like Sustainable Development, which is part of Agenda 21, whose aim it is to take access to rural areas away from the general public, eventually making the countryside a 'no go' area for ordinary people. See Page)
The Guardian - French Socialists on course to score absolute majority in parliament
Win would give President François Hollande a free hand in his response to country's economic crisis. The left has scored well in the first round of French parliamentary elections, leaving the Socialist party within reach of an absolute majority that would give François Hollande, the president, a free hand in his approach to dealing with the economic crisis.
The Socialists need 289 out of the 577 seats in the national assembly to take an absolute majority in the final runoff on Sunday 17 June.
This would ensure Hollande has backing for his delicate balancing act of cutting the deficit while attempting to boost growth.
First-round results show the Socialists are predicted to take between 275 and 315 seats, according to polling company TNS Sofres, and could make up the numbers with the backing of their electoral allies, the Greens.
This means Hollande is less likely to be forced to chase the support of the hardline leftist Front de Gauche and Communists, who oppose him on certain key issues such as deficit cuts and the minimum wage, and which would have made for a tricky alliance.
But although a Socialist absolute majority remains a possibility, it is far from a certainty. Socialist candidates are preparing for a tough fight in the final week of campaigning to bring voters out to the ballot boxes, after a record low first round turnout of 57%. See Article
The Guardian - Scottish Greens pull back from SNP pro-independence campaign
Party leader accuses Alex Salmond and other SNP officials of failing to create an inclusive and cross-party organisation. Alex Salmond's efforts to build a cross-party movement for Scottish independence have suffered an early blow after the Scottish Green party leader withdrew from the yes campaign.
Patrick Harvie, the Scottish Green co-convenor and MSP, shared a platform with Salmond at the launch of Yes Scotland last month, publicly signing a declaration with other prominent green activists.
Two weeks later, Harvie has now distanced his party from the campaign, accusing Salmond and other Scottish National party (SNP) officials of failing to create an inclusive and cross-party organisation. He said that failure could lead to defeat at the referendum in 2014.
"We are not full participants in Yes Scotland as an organisation because there was no basis on which to do so," Harvie said.
"We're pretty frustrated that that hasn't happened. It should've happened before the launch: they chose the date, they chose the format and they chose the message. They've have not done the relationship-building which should have been done beforehand."
Harvie's criticisms will embolden leaders of the anti-independence campaign, expected to be called Better Together, which will be launched by the former chancellor Alistair Darling and senior figures in the Liberal Democrats and Scottish Tories this month. See Article
The Guardian - Somali militants offer 10 camels for information on Barack Obama
Al-Shabaab mocks US bounty of up to $7m for whereabouts of group's leaders with offer of camels and chickens. A Somali Islamist militant group is offering rewards of chickens and camels for information on the whereabouts of the US president, Barack Obama, and secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, mocking the millions of dollars the United States has offered for leaders of the al-Qaida affiliate.
Fuad Muhammad Khalaf of al-Shabaab in Somalia made the offer after Friday prayers, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors militant organisations.
"Whoever reveals the hideout of the idiot Obama will be rewarded with 10 camels, and whoever reveals the hideout of the old woman Hillary Clinton will be rewarded with 10 chickens and 10 roosters," he said, according to SITE.
On Thursday, the US state department offered a reward of $5m (£3.2m) each for the whereabouts of Khalaf and three associates, as well as $7m for information about the al-Shabaab founder and commander Ahmed Abdi aw-Mohamed. A bounty of $3m was offered for the location of two other officials of the organisation.
Al-Qaida said in February that the al-Shabaab group, which was branded a terrorist organisation by the US government in 2008, had joined its ranks.
Al-Shabaab, which has controlled large parts of Somalia, faces pressure from Kenyan troops in the south, Ethiopian troops in central Somalia and African Union forces near the capital, Mogadishu.
The Telegraph - Children go back to basics in maths
Children will be introduced to times tables, mental arithmetic and fractions in the first two years of school as part of a back-to-basics overhaul of the National Curriculum.
Ministers will this week announce key tasks pupils are expected to master at each age under wide-ranging plans to counter more than a decade of dumbing down in schools.
A draft mathematics curriculum suggests that five and six year-olds will be expected to count up to 100, recognise basic fractions and memorise the results of simple sums by the end of the first year of compulsory education.
In the second year, they will be required to know the two, five and 10 times tables, add and subtract two-digit numbers in their head and begin to use graphs.
The proposals are intended to ensure that children are given a proper grounding in the basics at a young age to prepare them for the demands of secondary education and beyond.
It represents a dramatic toughening up of standards demanded in English state schools in a move designed to benchmark lessons against those found in the world’s most advanced education systems, such as Singapore, Hong Kong and parts of the United States. See Article
The Telegraph - Banks warn of costs from saver safeguards
Borrowing costs will rise if the Government pushes ahead with plans to give savers more protection against bank failures, the Chancellor has been told.
Bankers have warned George Osborne they will be pressured by bondholders and other corporate borrowers to increase rates to compensate for losing ground in the compensation pecking order.
Mr Osborne believes the banking claims are exaggerated. He is expected to release details of the better deal for savers in a long awaited white paper on banking reforms ahead of his Mansion House speech on Thursday.
He has accepted the recommendation from the Independent Commission on Banking that individual savers should be placed ahead of bondholders and corporate creditors in the event of failure. At present they are lower down the list alongside bigger creditors and international traders.
The Chancellor feels that individual investors need the extra protection because they risk losing their savings in the event of a collapse that was outside their control. The 'depositor preference' proposal made by the commission is aimed at transfering the risk of failure from taxpayers to other creditors in the market.
Bankers have been fighting a rearguard action so far but are expected to mount more vigorous opposition with the publication of the white paper. The British Bankers Association argues that the deposit guarantee scheme operated by the banks already provides strong protection for savers.
The Telegraph - Weather: Britain on flood alert as rain wrecks start of summer
Britain has been placed on flood alert on Monday as the wet weather continues to wreak havoc across the country during the first month of summer.
The Met Office last night warned of severe weather across swathes of the South while the Environment Agency issued 14 flood alerts for parts much of the North, North East and Wales.
Forecasters predicted up to 3in of rain could fall in some areas from the “thundery downpours” ahead of hail, heavy showers and gale-force storms later in the week.
On Sunday more than 600 residents from Pennal, near Machynlleth, Powys, North Wales, were evacuated amid fears a local reservoir had sprung a leak after a landslide.
Police said residents were taken to safety over the breach in the dam of a quarry, after a crack was found in a wall and a small amount of water escaped.
On Sunday night there were two controlled release of water, which officials hoped would lessen pressure on the dam wall. Residents were later told they return to their homes. See Article