Reform Scotland News: 27 July 2011


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


In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News.



News International: George Osborne has reportedly met Murdoch executives more than once a month since becoming Chancellor.  The revelations come after details of meetings between cabinet ministers and senior News Corp staff were released more than a week after David Cameron promised greater transparency.  (Scotsman page 12, Herald page 5, Daily Telegraph page 1)


Wind Turbines: Three huge wind turbines planned for a Highland beauty spot would be a blot on the landscape and wreck views from one of the region’s busiest tourist routes, campaigners claimed last night. The 328ft masts proposed for a Black Isle hillside would tower over the Kessock Bridge if they were built right next to the crossing that links Inverness and Easter Ross.  (Press and Journal page 1)


Altered Image Ban:  A Scottish MP has succeeded in having a skin cream advert featuring Hollywood star Julia Roberts banned, after lodging a complaint with a watchdog about the photographs being airbrushed. Jo Swinson successfully challenged that the ad for Teint Miracle foundation by Lancôme was misleading because she believed the flawless skin in the image was the result of digital manipulation, not the product.  The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld her complaint about the glossy two-page ad and banned Lancôme from using it again.  (Scotsman page 19, Herald page 11)



Rail Link: Chancellor George Osborne should spend billions of pounds on grand plans such as a direct high-speed rail line between Scotland and London to kick-start Britain out of a “lost decade” of low growth, one of the country’s leading economists has said. Quarterly GDP figures have shown the UK grew by a barely noticeable 0.2 per cent in the second quarter, a factor blamed partly on the fact people took their foot off the gas in April, with unusually warm weather, the royal wedding, an extended Easter break and the first round of Olympic ticket sales.  (Scotsman page 10-11)



Sickness Benefit: Up to 64,000 Scots could be forced off benefits after more than 40 per cent of those claiming incapacity benefits were found to be fit for work. Statistics released yesterday showed that 43 per cent of the 148,000 employment and support allowance (ESA) claimants in Scotland were capable of working, compared with 39 per cent of claimants in the UK as a whole.  The figures sparked claims that Scotland was at the forefront of the UK’s “culture of welfare dependency”.  (Scotsman page 1, Daily Telegraph page 6, Daily Express page 1, Scottish Daily Mail page 1, Herald page 3)


Male Bowl Cancer:  A man’s chances of developing bowel cancer have doubled in the past 30 years, according to new figures. In 1975, one in 29 men in Britain were estimated to go on to develop the disease at some point in their lifetime. But that figure has now increased to around one in 15. Women’s lifetime risk of bowel cancer has also risen by more than a quarter, from one in 26 to one in 19 during the same period, according to Cancer Research UK.  (Scotsman page 17, Herald page 9)


Bigger Brains:  People living at high northern latitudes have bigger eyes and brains, research has shown. Northerners evolved more developed visual processing to help them cope with long winters and grey skies. Scientists measured the eye sockets and brain capacity of 55 human skulls representing 12 different populations from across the world. They found that the further north of the equator people lived, the bigger their eyes and visual brain regions were. Both are adaptations to low light that have appeared since humans moved into northern Europe and Asia, a short length of time in evolutionary terms.  (Herald page 6, Daily Telegraph page 3, Scotsman page 3)