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Daily Political Media Summary: 12 August 2009

Reform Scotland

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Daily Political Media Summary: 12 August 2009

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All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is blue and underlined.

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Economy

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Fixed-Rate Mortgages: The cost of fixed-rate mortgages rose to their highest level this year during July as lenders passed on increases in funding costs to new borrowers. (Scotsman page 6, Press and Journal page 10)

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Standard Life: The Edinburgh-based life and pensions giant yesterday warned that thousands of savers in their with-profits funds will receive lower payouts than they expected. Standard Life pinned the blame on stock market volatility, with many of its policies losing money in the first half of the year. (Scotsman page 33, Herald page 25, Daily Telegraph page B4, Press and Journal page 16, Daily Mail page 48)

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Recession: More than 11,000 jobs will be lost in the north-east this year and next as the recession bites harder than anywhere else in Scotland, economic experts warned last night. However, relatively lower levels of unemployment in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire are expected to continue. The job-loss predictions are in a Scottish Enterprise-commissioned report put together by economic consultant Slims in partnership with forecasting group Oxford Economics. (Press and Journal page 7, STV)

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Crime

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Kenny MacAskill: Male chauvinism within Scotland\’s political and judicial systems is partly responsible for the high number of women in prison, Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill has claimed. He suggested that women were treated more harshly than men when it came to offending because society "did not expect women" to commit crimes, with short-term sentences unable to tackle the chaotic lives of many female offenders. (Herald page 1)

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Knife Crime: A long-running political row has been re-ignited by Labour accusations that the SNP is soft on knife crime. The party\’s Scottish leader, Iain Gray, has again demanded mandatory custodial sentences for anyone caught using a knife and accused the SNP of complacency. (Scotsman page 18, Herald page 8, Press and Journal page 7, Courier page 3, Daily Record page 2, Daily Express page 4, Sun page 2)

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Health

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Swine Flu: The government last night attempted to calm the fears of worried parents by insisting that the anti-viral Tamiflu was an appropriate treatment for children with swine flu. TV presenter Andrew Castle said yesterday his daughter “almost died” after taking Tamiflu as he confronted Health Secretary Andy Burnham over the drug’s safety. (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 5, Guardian page 8, Daily Telegraph page 8, Press and Journal page 15, Courier page 15, Daily Mirror page 17, Daily Mail page 5, Daily Record page 2, Daily Express page 5, Sun page 13)

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Glasgow Health Commission: Children have been identified by a group of experts as the key to solving a raft of health and social problems that have blighted Scotland\’s largest city for generations. The proposal is contained in a report by the Glasgow Health Commission, which was last year tasked with finding ways to improve its poor health record. (Herald page 1)

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Alzheimer’s: Following a Mediterranean-style diet and exercising regularly can cut the chances of developing Alzheimer\’s by as much as 60 per cent, a new study shows. (Scotsman page 13, Daily Telegraph page 8, Daily Express page 8)

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Education

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Apprenticeships: An extra 2,000 apprenticeships will be funded by the Scottish Government in the retail sector, it was announced yesterday. Training will be offered to anyone aged over 16 with companies in the high street and major supermarkets. (Press and Journal page 7, Scotsman page 17, STV)

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Politics

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UK Border Agency: The UK Border Agency has been accused of embarrassing Scotland after more than 60 Pakistanis, including members of a pipe band and a trade delegation, were banned from entering the country. Business talks in Glasgow had to be abandoned after the visitors from the district government in Lahore, which is twinned with the city, had their visa applications rejected. (Scotsman page 9, Herald page 1, Times page 11, Daily Telegraph page 4, Press and Journal page 9, Courier page 9, Daily Mirror page 12, Daily Mail page 8, Daily Record page 9, Daily Express page 7, Sun page 2, BBC)

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Council Tax: Scottish Labour is preparing to back a new plan to abolish the council tax and replace it with old-style rates where charges are levied according to the cost of a house. (Scotsman page 18, Daily Telegraph page 4, Courier page 9, Daily Mail page 1, Daily Record page 12, Daily Express page 4, Sun page 2)

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Donald Trump: Mike Rumbles, the Liberal Democrat MSP for Kincardine and West Aberdeenshire, has accused the Trump Organisation of "morally unacceptable" behaviour in the growing row over the possible use of compulsory purchase orders to force families from their homes for a £1 billion golf resort. (Scotsman page 8)

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Child Protection: Calls for a national inquiry into child protection services in Scotland were stepped up last night after the couple responsible for the death of Baby Peter were named for the first time. Labour leader Iain Gray said cases like that of Dundee toddler Brandon Muir and criticism of the handling of abuse cases in the north-east underlined the need for a nationwide review. (Press and Journal page 1, Scotsman page 12, Courier page 1, Daily Record page 5)