Daily Newspaper Summary: 2 December 2013

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.

Glasgow helicopter crash: As the names of six of the crash victims are released, police have confirmed the discovery of a ninth body and warn the death toll may rise. “Painstaking” recovery operations are continuing efforts to stabilise the site ahead of attempts to raise the helicopter wreckage, which plunged onto the Clutha bar on Friday night. Experts from the Air Accident Investigation Branch yesterday arrived in Glasgow and are concentrating on possible mechanical faults, with fuel supply failure reportedly the most likely cause of the crash. A memorial service for the victims was held on Sunday in Glasgow Cathedral. (The Herald pages 1-5, The Scotsman pages 1-7, The Guardian pages 1, 4-5, The Times pages 1, 6-9, The Daily Telegraph pages 1, 4-6, Financial Times page 2, Daily Express pages 1-7, Daily Record pages 1-11,The Sun pages 1-7, Daily Mail pages 1, 4-9, Press & Journal pages 1, 11-13, The Courier pages 1-4, Scotland on Sunday pages 1-4, The Sunday Herald pages 1-14, Scottish Mail on Sunday pages 1-11, The Sunday Times pages 1-3)

Alan Cochrane in the Daily Telegraph writes on the humbling stoicism of Glaswegians in the face of such tragedy.

White Paper:
A survey conducted by Progressive Scottish Opinion has found that in the days following the publication of the SNP’s White Paper, just 27% of Scots said they supported independence. Half of those questioned wished to remain as part of the UK, while 17% said they did not know. (The Herald page 10, The Times page 5, Scottish Mail on Sunday page 13)

Lesley Riddoch in The Scotsman questions the lack of “enthusiastic, critical or detailed response” to the free childcare system pledged by the Scottish Government’s white paper.

David Torrance in The Herald discusses the SNP’s dismissal of Westminster’s welfare and economic policies as “unfair”, arguing that the Scottish Government has failed to produce an imaginative alternative in their White Paper and instead relies on anti-Conservative rhetoric.

Eddie Barnes writing in The Scotsman on Sunday discusses the criticism surrounding the White Paper, asking whether or not opponents are looking to scaremonger. (The Scotsman on Sunday page 15)

Ian McWhirter writing in The Sunday Herald discusses the aftermath of the White Paper’s release and the criticism surrounding its publication, adding that it neither allayed fears nor did it increase support. (The Sunday Herald pages 29-30)

First Minister Alex Salmond in The Sunday Herald comments on a “decisive week” for Scotland’s future, noting that the No campaigners have been “rattled” by the “exceptional” response the White Paper has had. (The Sunday Herald page 31)

Gillian Bowditch and Jason Allardyce writing in The Sunday Times analyse the key sections of the SNP’s White Paper on independence, assessing both Yes and No campaigns. Margaret Thatcher’s PR guru, Lord Bell, emphasises Alex Salmond’s need to appeal to the emotions if he is to win the vote. (The Sunday Times pages 28-29)

Independence debate: Alex Salmond has called on David Cameron to “guarantee” that Scotland’s finances would not suffer in the event of a No vote, amid fears that £4billion could be cut from the Scottish  budget (The Herald page 10, The Sunday Times page 4, Scotland on Sunday page 5)

Sources in the Belgian Government have said Scotland would not gain automatic entry to the European Union in the event of a Yes vote for independence. (The Sunday Times page 1

Economist Professor David Bell says the proposed Scottish Independent Fiscal Body must be independent and should not be tasked with “pleasing the government of the day.” (The Scotsman page 10)

Labour MP Ann McKechin has said that shareholders in financial institutions – including Standard Life and the Royal Bank of Scotland – deserve clarity over what such companies will do should Scots vote for independence. (The Herald page 5)

Brian Monteith in The Scotsman questions the safety of relying on oil funds to finance an independent Scotland.

Holyrood review: Holyrood is facing a major review of the way it passes legislation. The enquiry by the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee will particularly focus on the often chaotic third and final stage of law-making, which can reportedly result in the passing of bad laws due to the confusion of MSPs. (The Herald page 10)

Fife by-election: Alex Rowley, Gordon Brown’s former key lieutenant in Fife for many years, has been chosen as the Labour candidate for the forthcoming Scottish Parliament by-election in Cowdenbeath. (The Times page 5)

Autumn Statement:
Ahead of Thursday’s Autumn Statement, the Chancellor announced yesterday that Britain’s economic recovery would be “responsible” and that there will be no return to the “boom and bust” cycle that preceded the recession. He has pledged an extra £250million to the British Business Bank to help reward small businesses, while introducing a cap on business rates increases. (The Daily Telegraph page 1, The Scotsman page 13, The Herald page 10, Financial Times page 2)

George Osborne has also reportedly warned that Britain can no longer afford the level of spending on the welfare state, adding that permanent cuts of around £100million will be necessary to make public finances “sustainable”. (The Daily Telegraph page 8)

RBS bonuses: The Royal Bank of Scotland is expected to pay bonuses totalling £500million to many of its 122,000 employees. (The Sunday Times page 1)

The head of the National Crime Agency (NCA), Keith Bristow, has warned that the internet poses today’s greatest criminal threat and must be policed effectively. (The Herald page 9)


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