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Daily political media summary: 27 October 2008

Economy

Comment on the financial crisis: Including Gordon Brown defending the Lloyds deal for the takeover of HBOS.  Bill Jamieson in the Scotsman, Iain MacWhirther in the Herald, FT page 2, Jackie Ashley in the Guardian, Gary Duncan in The Times, Eddie Barnes in Scotland on Sunday)

Interest Rates: Pressure is on the Bank of England to cut interest rates this week. Gordon Brown signalled that he wanted to see dramatic cuts, which experts believe could fall to as low as 0%. (The Times page 1, Daily Mirror page 9)

Pension pots ravaged: Millions of workers’ personal pension pots have decreased by a combined total of £157 billion in the last year as a result of the credit crunch. (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 30)

Average house price to plunge: The average house price is forecast to plunge £50,000 before the market bottoms out next year, however building firms are making an effort to shore up the market in new rent to buy offers. (Scotsman page 25, Herald page 1)

Food and Fuel Prices: Gordon Brown has stated that food and fuel prices should begin to fall as oil prices come down. (Courier page 1, The P&J page 1)

Plummeting oil prices are set to push Scottish Oil exploration to the brink as banks revise credit facilities. (Sunday Herald page 80)

Job Losses: More than 20,000 Scots are set to lose their jobs before Christmas business leaders warned. The Chancellor has stated that he will not order either RBS or Lloyds/HBOS to keep jobs north of the border. (Scotland on Sunday page 1, Daily Mail page 4)

Government’s recovery plan: A group of experts branded the government’s plan to spend Britain out of a recession as ridiculous. Mr. Darling admitted that the economic slump will be longer and deeper than first thought yet the Prime Minister and the Chancellor announced that they will increase borrowing to fend off the recession, and claim that this is the responsible action. (The P&J page 10, The Times page 1, FT page 1, The Sunday Times page 2, Scotland on Sunday page 9)

Transport 

Labour policies reviewed: A Report has been released by experts accusing Labour of failing on it transport policies. (Herald page 10 )

Education

Curriculum for Excellence: No physics, chemistry or biology, as students in secondary schools could have cross-curricular study ending the practice of divided subjects. Reports that schools have already begun to merge history into other social subjects have been issued by the Scottish Association of Teachers of History. Teachers claim that the history of Scotland must be central to the new curriculum. This policy could be set back a year in it scheduled implementation. (Scotsman page 13, Herald page 1 and page 4, Sunday Herald page 1)

Health

Cancer rates: One hundred Scots a day will be hit by cancer, all forms of cancer are set to increase including those affecting young people such as Hodgkin’s lymphoma. An increase in the population as well as the fact that people are living longer is thought to be behind the higher estimates.  (Scotsman page 12)

 

NHS election costs: Concerns over the diversion of funds from patient care to proposed elections to give the public a say in how services are, with estimates of the of cost of between £14 million and £16.65 million. (Courier page 3, The P&J page 7, Daily Mail page 32, Sunday Herald page 1)

 

MSP call for drug review: An MSP has called for a review in to drug-abuse after the highly addictive and deadly substances crystal meth and liquid ecstasy were seized in the Grampians. (The P&J page 1)

 

Waiting lists: Some mental health patients are being forced to wait more than four and a half years for treatment. (The P&J page 9)

 

Politics

SNP turnaround on taxes: The SNP have signalled that for the first time that local income tax rates could vary locally. In addition it is considering whether earnings from investments stocks and shares should form part of its local income tax proposals as well. (Scotsman page 6, and David Maddox in the Scotsman, Herald page 6, Courier page 3, The P&J page 1, The Times page 11, The Times page 1, Daily Express page 2, Daily Record page 2, Daily Mail page 4, Sun page 2, Sunday Herald page 11

 

Glenrothes by-election: Labour has begun to move up in the polls as more and more big names head to Glenrothes, including Alex Salmond, Gordon Brown, Alastair Darling and William Hague. (Scotsman page 7, Herald page 6, The Courier page 14, The P&J page 9, The Times page 11, Daily Record page 2, Sun page 2, The Sunday Times page 7, Scotland on Sunday page 1, The Sunday Post page 15)

 

SSP Candidate calls for a millionaires’  tax: The SSP candidate in Glenrothes, Morag Balfour has called for a millionaire’s tax in relation to the housing crisis.  (The Courier page 14)

 

Scottish Independence: The Prime Minister took another swipe at the Scottish government claiming that the SNP was banking on the volatile oil industry as an argument for independence. David Cameron has come out to defend his position as a Unionist. (Herald page 7, Ewan Crawford in The Guardian, The Sunday Times page 1, The Sunday Post page 15 and page 2)

 

Planning permission: Red tape is to be cut in an effort to simplify the planning system. (The P&J page 11, Sunday Herald page 79)

 

Lord Mandelson: Peter Mandelson denied doing any favours for Russian Oleg Deripaska, and is defiant upon his up-coming trip to Russia. An influential commons inquiry is looking for ways to hold the Business Secretary accountable, while a senior EU official has called for the release of Mandelson’s diary. (The P&J page 5, FT page 2 and page 2, The Guardian page 4, The Times page 3, The Telegraph page 4, Daily Mail page 10, Scotland on Sunday page 2)

 

George Osborne is to take a step back from fundraising after being chastened over the meetings which he attended with a Russian Oligarch Oleg Deripaska. (FT page 2, The Times page 3, The telegraph page 4, Daily Mail page 10)