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Newslinks for Tuesday 23rd July 2013

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9pm WATCH: First public viewing of royal baby

5.30pm LeftWatch: Labour's job advert for a new spinner reveals the holes in their operation

2.45pm ToryDiary: "Maybe Coalition politics or civil service intransigence makes a proper, punchy review unfeasible at the moment - but if that is the case, it might have been better not to start a halfway house process rather than end up with a fudge which provides ammunition to our enemies in Brussels and at home." - If it carries on like this, the review of EU powers is set to fail - and here are four reasons why

11.30pm Lucius Winslow on Comment: Why Conservatives have a future in Northern Ireland

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 07.51.20ToryDiary: The royal baby may be crowned King as this century grows old - testament to the monarchy's enduring power

Also on Tory Diary: Cameron limits internet porn: social conservatives in all parties will applaud

Columnist Marina Kim: Let's face it. The middle classes are becoming litterbugs

Lord Ashcroft on Comment: Len is right – Unite members are not queuing up to join Labour

MPsETC: Full list of Conservative would-be MEP candidates in all regions - there's still time to use your vote - **UPDATED** with the hotline for those who haven't received their postal ballot

Roger Evans MLA on Local Government: The police should not "screen out" robbery or burglary

The Deep End: Shale gas is a global resource, but all eyes are on Britain

The Prime Minister and the Mayor of London welcome a Monarch-To-Be

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.26.08David Cameron tweeted: “I’m delighted for the Duke and Duchess now their son has been born. The whole country will celebrate. They’ll make wonderful parents.”…Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, announced that the fountains in Trafalgar Square would be turned blue for the next seven days using LED lighting. He said: “Huge congratulations to the Duke and Duchess on the birth of their first child who will, by virtue of being born in this great city, be a Londoner through and through.” - The Times (£)

  • 'Feel-good factor' of royal birth will give economy a bounce - Daily Express



  • A dynasty renewed - Christopher Wilson, Daily Telegraph
  • Three cheers for the new Prince - Robert Hardman, Daily Mail
  • We've all had our special moment, now let Kate and Will have theirs - Grace Dent, The Independent

> Today: ToryDiary - The royal baby may be crowned King as this century grows old - testament to the monarchy's enduring power

First tranche of EU Competences Review reflects official thinking.  The balance is "broadly appropriate".  But there are some devils in the detail...

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.27.34"In conclusion, based on the evidence submitted, the current balance of competence between the EU and the UK was considered by stakeholders to be broadly appropriate and that these competences are properly applied but that competence should not be extended further. The definition of health policy, management of health services and medical care and the allocation of resources are all member state competences, and thus matters for the UK." - The Guardian

...On the single market...

"The report warned, however, that the single market had brought about "burdensome" regulations. It said: "[The single market] has brought with it constraints on policymaking of varying kinds, and a regulatory framework, which some find difficult to operate within or find burdensome, even if the obligations are not necessarily any greater than would have been imposed nationally." - The Guardian

...the Working Time Directive...

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.28.50"The report on health raised concerns about the impact of EU regulations - such as the WTD and data protection laws - on the NHS.  "There was a strong view that it is important to consult more with health departments and their stakeholders on these areas from the outset. A number of concerns were raised about the negative impact of the WTD on the NHS," it said." - Daily Express

...And genetically modified crops

"On development of genetically modified crops, the review also gave vent to concerns that the EU was applying “a political overlay that disrupts trade and stifles innovation, putting all EU countries at a competitive disadvantage”. The report on animal health and welfare also raised concerns about the pet travel scheme, adding that Britain should try to bring in more stringent controls." - Daily Telegraph

Liberal Democrat MPs cheer...

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.31.23"One Liberal Democrat minister said on Monday: “All this review has done so far is underlined rather than weakened the case for Britain’s membership of the European Union, which is not exactly the message that many Conservatives were hoping for.” - Financial Times

  • Clegg's £1bn plan to get jobs for 160,000 young people has so far helped just 4,600 - Daily Mail

...And Conservative ones boo

"The report led to a furious response from Tory Eurosceptic MPs. Peter Bone said it should prompt Conservatives to abandon the Coalition and seek to repatriate powers alone." - The Independent

The Telegraph's view: This review solves nothing - and isn't capable of doing so

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.32.22"While useful, this review will sway few hearts. Those who want to stay in will point to the advantages, and the difficulty of extricating ourselves. Those who want reform will be grateful for specific areas to prioritise. Those who want to leave will find evidence aplenty of how Britain’s sovereignty has been diluted and traduced. But in truth, a question this elemental was never going to be resolved by a few dusty dossiers." - Daily Telegraph

  • Facts finally collide with ideology on Europe - Philip Stephens, Financial Times

The Prime Minister's porn net solution. 1) Filters

"The Prime Minister said it was up to the companies to make sure that all customers were presented with an “unavoidable choice” on whether pornography could be accessed on devices using a household internet connection. “However they do it, there will be no escaping this decision, no ‘remind me later’ and then it never gets done. And they will ensure it is an adult making the choice. If adults don’t want these filters, that’s their decision,” said Mr Cameron." - The Times (£)

The Prime Minister's porn net solution. 1) Search engine bans

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.33.08'If people enter into a Google search a truly disgusting term, something that’s so obvious that the searcher is looking for illegal child abuse images, my view – and I think the view of parents up and down the country – is that the internet company shouldn’t return any results,’ he said…I’m saying look, it isn’t about free speech, these images are illegal, you shouldn’t enable people who are deliberately searching for them." - Daily Mail

But not everyone believes in 1). Or 2). Or either.

"Critics accused Mr Cameron of muddying the waters between legal and illegal pornography, and said that filtering raised questions of surveillance. “This is getting close to the kind of thing you see in Saudi Arabia,” said Paul Bernal, a law lecturer at the University of East Anglia. “We’re automatically making a list of people who have opted into porn.” - Financial Times

  • Cameron refuses to back ban on Sun's Page 3 topless images - The Guardian
  • Louise Mensch attacks plan to ban rape simulation - The Independent
  • "Children’s easy access to online pornography is a serious concern. It is right to expect big companies to tackle it." - Times Editorial (£)
  • Cameron falls prey to the lure of clunky intrusion - Janan Ganesh, Financial Times
  • A porn crackdown that ticks the right boxes - Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph

> Today: Tory Diary - Cameron limits internet porn: social conservatives in all parties will applaud

> Yesterday: ToryDiary - Cameron's anti-porn plans: problematic in practice, but right in principle. Conservatives aren't libertarians.

Rachel Sylvester: The Conservatives' problem with women

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.34.06"What really matters, particularly to women, is the tone of political debate. No 10 can dream up as many announcements as it wants on childcare and maternity leave but they will ring hollow if voters then hear a Cabinet minister dismissing a female MP as a “silly woman” and the Prime Minister telling another to “calm down, dear.” The Conservatives will struggle to persuade women that they take their concerns seriously when Tory backbenchers greet a female MP who wears a leopard-print top with a “roar” and cat-scratching gestures." - The Times (£)

Paul Goodman: Don't believe Cameron's claim that he wants a majority. He's planning for a second Coalition

"In a perfect world, the PM might yearn for the landslide majorities of the Thatcher era. But in this fallen one, he knows that they are psephologically impossible. This leaves him a stark choice. Should he strain for the bare Tory majority which is scarcely possible, or plan for a more practicable outcome – a second coalition? There can be no doubt what his decision will be – indeed, what it already is. On The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday, Mr Cameron protested that he wants and can gain a majority. Frankly, both claims were from the Pinocchio school of truth-telling, fit only to make his nose grow and the angels weep." - Daily Telegraph

Crosby health presentation made to cross-party gathering organised by firm run by Labour councillor

Crosby Lynton"In a statement issued by Mark Detre from the Westminster Advisers consultancy, which now advises the body, the AIHO said: "Crosby Textor Fullbrook provided research and advice into public attitudes on healthcare to H5. But Detre declined to comment on a report on the Guido Fawkes website that Westminster Advisers, run by the Labour supporter and former councillor Dominic Church, organised a cross-party meeting at the end of 2010 which was shown the Crosby Textor research. Detre said: "I'm not going to go into that. I have given you the statement we are giving out. That is all we are saying." - The Guardian

Osborne strains to circumvent migrant homes trap for taxpayer

"The Treasury is scrambling to find ways to stop European Union migrants who have paid little or no tax in the UK benefiting from the Chancellor’s Help to Buy initiative, due to be launched next year. George Osborne will today set out more detail about the scheme, which offers homebuyers’ government assistance to obtain 95 per cent mortgages on homes worth up to £600,000. A senior industry figure involved in the talks said that EU rules were causing a complication for the Treasury." - The Times (£)

  • Chancellor seeks to follow up Help to Buy success - Financial Times
  • Europe needs 1.3 billion immigrants - Oliver Kamm, The Times (£)
  • Vans encourage illegal immigrants to send texts for free advice on getting home - Daily Mail

Nick Herbert: Austerity is good for public services

Herbert Nick June 2011"Not long ago every political party paraded its virility on crime by promising more bobbies on the beat. No one stopped to ask what the record number of police was actually doing. As it turned out, a fifth – 30,000 officers – weren't working on the frontline at all, but in backroom jobs. When the crunch came, forces quickly found that there were savings to be made. Police commanders whispered quietly that a burning platform had forced them to tackle inefficiencies that had festered for years." - The Guardian

  • Staggering fall in crime rates throughout western world: in some places, it's safer than during the 1950s - Daily Mail
  • Police chiefs stay defiant by re-electing Sir Hugh Orde - The Times (£)

> Today: Roger Evans MLA on Local Government - The police should not "screen out" robbery or burglary

Miliband to put union funding plan to special conference vote

"Ed Miliband will set up a confrontation with Labour’s biggest union backers in a special conference that will debate the leader’s proposed changes to party funding and membership. In a speech on Monday, the Labour leader announced he would put his reforms – that members of affiliated unions will, in future, opt in to party membership rather than opting out – to a vote at a conference in the spring." - Financial Times

  • Prescott's fire centre 'folly' still costing taxpayers millions - The Independent

Lord Ashcroft poll finds that less than a third of Unite members would opt in to its political fund

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 08.36.31"Lord Ashcroft has released one of his inimitable polls, this time of Unite union members. It finds that only 30 per cent of members would choose to opt in to Unite’s political fund, while 53 per cent said they would not and 17 per cent had not decided. There wasn’t much support for the current opt-out system, either, with 31 per cent saying they backed it, and 57 per cent saying they preferred an opt-in. When asked whether hey would join the party, 12 per cent said they would." - Isobel Hardman, The Spectator

> Today: Lord Ashcroft on Comment - Len is right – Unite members are not queuing up to join Labour

News in Brief

  • Global warming ‘just hidden from view’ - The Times (£)
  • Atos told to improve medical assessments - Financial Times 
  • Care fears over surge in elderly population - Daily Express
  • Pope Francis greeted by ecstatic crowds following arrival in Brazil - The Guardian
  • Archbishop of Canterbury says that shaming bankers is 'lynch mobbish' - Daily Mail
  • Children in some military families risk falling behind in school, MPs warn - Daily Telegraph
  • Lightning show dazzles the south coast as summer lightning comes - Daily Express


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