In Memoriam

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It is now more than 60 years after the Second World War in Europe ended.This statement is in memory of the six million Jews, 20 million Russians, 10 million Christians and 1,900 Catholic priests who were murdered, massacred, raped, burned, starved and humiliated with the German and Russian Peoples looking the other way!

Now, more than ever, with Iraq , Iran and others, claiming the Holocaust to be ‘a myth,’ it’s imperative to make sure the world never forgets, because there are others who would like to do it again.

This is intended to reach 40 million people worldwide! Join us and be a link in the memorial chain helping us to distribute this message around the world.

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IFS predicts tax rises as Autumn Statement is digested

MORNING BRIEFING – By Benedict Brogan (Daily Telegraph).

Good morning. It’s a thin news day as Westminster draws breath after excitement of the Autumn Statement. The extended post mortem carries over into today’s papers, and the coverage is less positive for the Chancellor. When it came to the disastrous Budget earlier this year, the devil was in the detail for Mr Osborne, with the fine print bringing about the Great Pasty Tax Uprising. It could be that the same is true this time around. The IFS announced yesterday that George’s sums simply don’t add up. Branding as “inconceivable” the scale of the cuts planned in non-protected areas, which would need to run to 30pc in real terms between 2010/11 and 2017/18, the think tank believes that tax rises will need to take their place. As the Telegraph reports, a £27bn tax increase would be needed just to keep protected areas on an even keel in real terms after the next election. Then there is the case of the 5m people the Mail asserts will be higher rate tax payers by 2015, a result of fiscal drag capturing 500,000 more people than Treasury projections indicated. A tax intended to capture the extravagantly wealthy is the new normal.

The rich, as the new higher rate taxpayers have been classified, have few friends in Westminster. Senior Labour figures want to devote their efforts to attempting to prevent the 1pc cap on working age benefit rises taking effect, as does the Times (£) which runs an article of the impact on the disabled on its front page, and one on the impact of the bottom 30pc inside. Ed Miliband is mulling his options and may take the electorally unpopular position of opposing the strivers v skivers narrative Mr Osborne has crafted. That is good news for Osborne the strategist, if not Osborne the Chancellor, as is the news that Labour’s “Mummy Tax” line (seen here in the Mail) has failed to fly.

Most importantly, though, there is the issue of Ed Balls’ stammer. While the Mail concerns itself with the very hostile questioning George Osborne faced from Evan Davis on the Today programme yesterday, the rest of the press pack is asking itself whether the Shadow Chancellor should be treated as disabled. “Red faced Tories braying with stage laughter” upset Margaret Drabble in the Independent, whereas Quentin Letts in the Mail and Dan Hodges in the Telegraph both take the view that the excuse was symptomatic of a man who never concedes responsibility when he made a mistake.

The Chancellor, who once claimed a field for his horse at taxpayers’ expense according to today’s Mirror, decided yesterday that the AAA rating didn’t matter that much after all. That’s just as well as it won’t be around for long. With a downgrade would come higher borrowing costs which would make Wednesday’s path impossible to tread. The Treasury will be happy that Starbucks is to volunteer £20m in tax over the next two years, but it is Britain which needs to start paying its way, and soon.

THE RETURN OF THE THIRD WAY

Dave has identified a third way over press reform, the Telegraph reports. The Prime Minister is considering establishing an independent press regulator by means of a Royal Charter, the same mechanism used to found the Bank of England and the BBC. As a Royal Charter cannot be changed without government assent, the move would prevent the press from unilaterally changing the terms of their regulatory code. The move would also answer many of the objections raised by Labour, who the Guardian reports are soon to publish their own Leveson Act. As for the editors, they’re ready to deal, the Mail claims. Lord Hunt and Lord Black are working on the final form of the industry reply, but with poachers and game keepers keen to avert a statutory solution, for once this should solve more problems than it creates.

TORIES ARE THE NASTY PARTY, SAYS FRIEND

Nick Clegg has been doing his best to scotch rumours that relations between the Coalition partners at a senior level had improved after the bonding experience of the Autumn Statement. The Mail reports that Mr Clegg told Ad Lib magazine that the Conservative backbenches lack compassion and that his role was to “yank them back to the centre”. Oh well, at least those thoughts put him on Mr Cameron’s wavelength, if nothing else.

MR MISUNDERSTOOD

Sir Jeremy Heywood isn’t a Rasputin-esque figure thriving in the chaos of the Downing Street machine, Amelia Gentleman writes in her Guardian profile of the great man. He is, in fact, a misunderstood colossus, propping up successive governments with his Stakhanovite work ethic and refusal to make jokes. Ringing commendations from a number of insiders praise Sir Jeremy for mastering the “art of the possible”. The only dissenting voice is Paul Flynn’s: “we were expecting to meet pure gold. He turned out to be just another obfuscating civil servant. There was no real thrill,” he grumbles.

TWEETS AND TWITS

A little light theology from Tom Harris:

@TomHarrisMP: “I’m not sure I’m taking the correct meaning from my Bible readings, but isn’t Job an obnoxious, arrogant sh*t? ”

TOP COMMENT

In the Telegraph

Fraser Nelson – Young lives are being ruined because of our timid Treasury

Dan Hodges – It’s about time that Bruiser Balls grew up

Jeremy Warner – We may need to axe a whole department to get a grip on spending

Telegraph View – A crisis of trust in the pension system

Best of the rest

Phillip Collins in The Times (£) – Labour must cut its dependency on welfare

Mary Ann Sieghart in The Independent – I used to think more cuts were the answer. But not any more

Quentin Letts in the Daily Mail – Oh, please! Don’t play the victim card, Mr Balls

Samuel Brittan in the FT (£) – Stale political debate holds back Britain’s recovery

THE AGENDA

Today: Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg to make series of Regional Growth Fund visits.

10:30 am: High Court action by one of the civil servants suspended following the West Coast rail franchise fiasco. Kate Mingay, the Department for Transport’s commercial and technical services director, was one of three DfT officials suspended after the Government pulled the plug on the West Coast bidding process earlier this autumn. She is applying for an injunction prohibiting the continuation of her suspension. The Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand,

Gay marriage given the green light for weddings in churches

The decision represents a major u-turn on the position set out in a formal Government consultation earlier this year which proposed a blanket ban.

It raises the prospect of a major battle between church and state over the issue as well as a massive backbench rebellion with at least 130 Conservatives set to vote against the proposals.

The plans will be announced by the Culture Secretary Maria Miller next week and a detailed bill is expected to be put before Parliament next month.

That could see the redefinition of marriage sped through the Commons before the summer.

The shift in policy came after Government lawyers came up with plans for “multiple lock” legal protections for churches, mosques and synagogues which do not want to marry gay couples on grounds of belief.

More….

Duchess of Cambridge: hospital nurse who took hoax call ‘found dead in suspected suicide’ – Telegraph

Edward VII Hospital, where the Duchess spent three nights earlier this week being treated for severe pregnancy sickness.

Paramedics tried to revive her but she was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said the cause of her death was “unexplained” but they were not treating it as suspicious.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge said they were “deeply saddened” to be told of her death.

In a statement, the hospital said: “It is with very deep sadness that we confirm the tragic death of a member of our nursing staff, Jacintha Saldanha. Jacintha has worked at the King Edward VII Hospital for more than four years, she was an excellent nurse and a well respected and popular member of staff with all her colleagues.

More….

Political correctness at its worst!

YouViewed/Editorial

School Removed God Reference From first-Grader’s Poem

 

 

 

 

 

” An elementary school in North Carolina censored a first-grade student’s Veterans Day poem by removing a line that referenced her grandfather’s belief in God.

The West Marion Elementary School student was supposed to read the poem at a Nov. 8 Veterans Day ceremony to honor her grandfather, a Vietnam veteran.

The deleted line read: “He prayed to God for peace, he prayed to God for strength.”

An attorney for the Alliance Defending Freedom, which advocates for religious rights and freedoms, criticized the school’s decision. “

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