Daily Political Media Summary: 24 September 2008

All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions.

Economy
HBOS: Sir Donald Mackay, Chairman of the Scottish Mortgage Trust, has called for a complete re-think of the deal between HBOS and Lloyds TSB while JP Morgan analysts have warned that the deal is not in the interests of Lloyds TSB shareholders. Sir George Mathewson has warned that rival banks should not rely on the government to curb the market dominance of the new Lloyds TSB/ HBOS group. Following a meeting with the First Minister yesterday, Lloyds TSB has agreed to take a submission from the Scottish Government presenting the arguments for Scotland as a location for “key head office decision-making functions” (Scotsman page 8 and page 29, George Kerevan in the Scotsman, Herald page 2 and page 28, Mirror page 9, Telegraph page 1, Times page 47, Andy Hornby in the Times, John Kay in the FT, P&J page 1, Courier page 1, Record page 2)

Short selling: Billionaire John Paulson was revealed yesterday as one of the hedge fund bosses who has been short selling UK bank shares through he New York based Paulson & co. (Guardian page 3, FT page 1, Express page 6, Courier page 15)

EDF: French energy group EDF is to buy British Energy for £12.4billion. (Guardian page 23, Telegraph B1, Courier page 15)

Interest rates: David Blanchflower in the Guardian (page 29) argues for a cut in interest rates.

Retirement: The European Court of Justice rejected a claim by Age Concern that to compel people to retire at or after 65 without compensation breeches EU equality requirements. (Times page 22, FT page 5, Express page 17, P&J page 8, Courier page 4)

Crime
Children’s DNA:
The Scottish Government is consulting on extending police powers to allow the retention of genetic samples taken from child offenders referred to the Children’s Panel. (Scotsman page 13, Herald page 10, Mail page 18, Telegraph page 8, Times page 5, Express page 15)

Education
Girls out perform boys: Figures produced by the SQA show that girls still outperform boys at every stage of the school exam process. (Scotsman page 15, Herald page 9, Mail page 12, P&J page 7)

Health
Ritalin: New health guidelines due to be published today are expected to say that Ritalin, the drug used to calm hyperactive children, should be avoided wherever possible and not given at all to under fives. (Scotsman page 7, Burning issue in the Scotsman, Herald page 1, Guardian page 4, Mail page 17, Times page 18)

Cancer survival: Women who are better off are more likely to survive breast cancer than poorer women according to Cancer Research. (Record page 14)

Local Government
Industrial action:
150,000 council workers from three trade unions will take part in strike action today across Scotland as a result of an ongoing dispute over pay. (Scotsman page 10, Herald page 10, Express page 10, Kerry Gill in the Express, P&J page 13, Courier page 2, Record page 6)

Politics
Gordon Brown:
Comment and analysis on the Prime Minister’s speech to the Labour Party conference yesterday where he was introduced by his wife. He said it was “no time for a novice” and pledged to work towards a fairer Britain. (Scotsman page 1, David Maddox in the Scotsman, Herald page 1 and page 6, Ian Bell in the Herald, Sun page 1 and page 6, Guardian page 1 and page 10, Simon Jenkins in the Guardian, Mail page 1, Amanda Platell in the Mail, Peter Oborne in the Mail, Mirror page 1 and page 5, Telegraph page 1 and page 4, Simon Heffer in the Telegraph, Times page 1 and page 6, Angus Macleod in the Times, Daniel Finkelstein in the Times, Alice Miles in the Times, FT page 1 and page 3, Express page 1, Ann Widdecombe in the Express, P&J page 1 and page 12, Courier page 1, Record page 1 and page 4)

Labour candidates: Ross Lydall in the Scotsman (page 24) comments that local Labour party chiefs want candidates to be a ‘safe pair of hands’ at the next election which could make it difficult for more female candidates to be selected.

Wendy Alexander: The former Scottish Labour leader has been cleared of breeching the MSPs code of conduct. (Herald page 5, P&J page 9, Courier page 3)

Scottish homecoming: Tens of thousands of North Americans will be sent personal invitations to visit Scotland next year as part of Homecoming 2009. (Express page 7, Courier page 6)