The distiller — today’s UK headlines, summarised and analysed.

28th June 2017

Good morning


Brief overview: Today’s paper cover Brexit and the cracks opening in the negotiation team. The FT covers the Google hearing, and the Mirror covers the Charlie Gard case.

Outside of the headlines: The White House has warned that it has intel Syria is preparing to use chemical weapons on its people again. Syria has been a proxy for Russia and America to flex their muscles, at the cost of many civilian lives.

The Daily Mail

Owned by: Daily Mail and General Trust, owned by Jonathan Harmsworth, 4th Viscount Rothermere

Editor: Paul Dacre

Political leaning: Right / far right

Daily circulation: circa 1,490,000

Today’s leading headline: Beyond satire!

Today’s Mail covers a case involving two Romanian men who “cannot be extradited because jails in their homeland are too small”. The paper is furious, saying the matter has arisen from UK judges not wishing to “contravene rulings from the European Court of Human Rights”.

Afterthought: Those bloody human rights. Gosh, they are vexing. It’s so frustrating when you can’t just alter rules and laws to fit your own agenda. This Daily Mail article almost reads as satire — this paper killed irony.

The Daily Telegraph

Owned by: Telegraph Media Group, owned by Sir David Barclay and Sir Frederick Barclay

Editor: Chris Evans

Political leaning: Right

Daily circulation: circa. 460,000

Today’s leading headline: New bank crash fears over rise in easy credit.

Fear of another nationwide bank crash form today’s Telegraph headline. The paper quotes Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, as saying that banks are “forgetting the lessons of the past” and risking a new financial crisis. This oncoming potential crisis stems from “a sharp increase in car loans and credit card debt.”

There are legitimate fears being floated over the rate at which car loans are being taken out, at a rate of increase of 20% per year.

Afterthought: Carney’s timely warning is necessary to stop us sleepwalking into another financial crisis fuelled by greed and excess. The Bank of England has taken steps to put the brakes on this looming crisis, ordering banks to “increase their capital reserves by £11.4 billion over the next 18 months”.

The Times

Owned by: News UK, Rupert Murdoch’s company.

Editor: John Witherow

Political leaning: Right

Daily circulation: circa. 446,000

Today’s leading headline: May’s top team splits over Brexit.

Brexit negotiations and the ensuing chaos it has caused forms the Times’ headline today. The paper reports that there is division between Chancellor Philip Hammond, Brexit Secretary David Davis, and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. Hammond and Davis have set out different goals and agendas for the Brexit negotiations, and Hammond has also gone on to criticise Johnson, who claimed that Britain could “have our cake and eat it” with regards to the discussions.

Afterthought: In another event straight from the pages of a satire commentary, the UK’s Brexit aims aren’t even being allowed the chance to fall apart, as they haven’t even been laid out clearly yet. All three men have different pundits eyeing them up to take over from May, so it is worth watching how the right-wing media chooses to cover them.

The Guardian

Owned by: Scott Trust Limited, run by a board with a policy of non-interference.

Editor: Katharine Viner

Political leaning: Left

Daily circulation: circa. 161,000

Today’s leading headline: Radical reform urged to repair divided Britain.

Today’s Guardian continues to discuss the consequences of the Grenfell disaster, and its repercussions across society. The paper states that “social mobility policies have failed to significantly reduce inequality between rich and poor” over the last twenty years. The result is that society has left the poor behind.

The paper quotes a study that has found several worrying results, such as the rise of child poverty and the stagnation of wages.

Afterthought: As we have previously discussed, Grenfell brought the topic of social division back into the national narrative: the victims of the fire in the social housing block strongly contrasted with the million pound homes around it. However, the information that has arisen from the study should not surprise anyone.

The i

Owned by: Johnston Press. CEO is Ashley Highfield, significant ties to the BBC

Editor: Oliver Duff

Political leaning: Centre

Daily circulation: circa. 264,000

Today’s leading headline: Cabinet chaos on Brexit.

Today’s i too covers what it deems “chaos” inside the Brexit boardroom. The paper reports that tensions have been “laid bare as senior ministers square up in public over competing plans for UK’s future”.

Afterthought: There are two camps working for their version of the best Brexit deal. The first, soft Brexit, is favoured by businesses and many Labour politicians, as well as multiple Tories. Hard Brexit, cutting the UK off from Europe completely, is being pushed by Davis and a large swathe of the public. Neither are working out currently.

The Daily Mirror

Owner: Trinity Mirror. Its chairman is David Grigson, formerly the chief financial officer at Reuters

Editor: Lloyd Embley

Political leaning: Left / far left

Daily circulation: circa. 716,900

Today’s leading headline: The final heartbreak.

Today’s Mirror covers the conclusion of the Charlie Gard case. Charlie, a small baby, is “thought to be one of 16 children in the world to have mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a condition which causes progressive muscle weakness and brain damage.” Doctors in Britain could stop providing life-support, as they believed Charlie would not recover. The parents then appealed, and the case reached the European Court of Human Rights, who yesterday decided to refuse to intervene.

Afterthought: This case is far more complicated than how I managed to convey it, and I strongly urge you to read through it at least once. It will be a benchmark case in medical law. A sad result all around.

Financial Times

Owner: The Nikkei, which is based in Tokyo.

Editor: Lionel Barber

Political leaning: Centre

Daily circulation: circa. 193,211

Today’s leading headline: Brussels’ £2.4bn fine for Google raises stakes in transatlantic tussle.

The Financial Times today covers landmark conclusion of a seven-year court investigation into Google breaking antitrust laws. Simply put, Google has been found guilty of manipulating search results to favour its own shopping services. The fine is the largest ever given. Google now has 90 days to end this practise, or it faces a 5% fine on its daily worldwide earnings.

Afterthought: The FT has referred to this as “a decision with potentially far-reaching implications for the tech sector and already-strained transatlantic relations”. However, Google and its parent company Alphabet have a history of tax avoiding in Ireland, so this court case should be well worth keeping a (long) eye on.

The Sun

Owner: News UK, owned by Rupert Murdoch

Editor: Tony Gallagher

Political leaning: Right / far right

Daily circulation: circa. 1,611,464

Today’s leading headline: Hose that girl?

Today’s Sun bares a picture of a man and more noticeably a woman having a “romp” in a fire engine. The paper wants to know who they are.

Afterthought: No headline coverage of Brexit negotiations today.


Scottish Papers

Daily Record

Owner: Trinity Mirror. Close ties to Scottish Labour.

Editor: Murray Foote

Political leaning: Left / far left although under Foote its allegiances have become more blurred.

Daily circulation: circa. 160,550

Today’s leading headline: Gun gang’s £500k heist on hotel jeweller.

The Daily Record reports on last night’s raid carried out at Gleneagles, during which £500,000 worth of jewellery was stolen. The men took “posh watches and gems”.

Afterthought: Supposedly the men were armed with a shotgun and machetes. Police are investigating, and the outcome should be interesting — £500,000 worth of goods is a huge quantity to fence.

The Herald

Owner: Newsquest

Editor: Graeme Smith

Political leaning: Central / Left

Daily circulation: circa. 29,000

Today’s leading headline: Sturgeon puts her plan for Union vote on back burner.

Today’s Herald reports on Nicola Sturgeon’s plan to put off discussion of another independence referendum until around 2021. This decision comes on the back of a poor election cycle from the SNP, who lost 21 seats across the country.

Afterthought: Many point towards referendum fatigue as being a large factor in Sturgeon’s poor result. People are tired of continual calls for independence whilst little changes in Scotland.


Final Thought

News shouldn’t tell you how to feel. The news should present facts, and allow you to formulate your own opinion. Regardless of your political affiliation, try and read beyond the headlines that most of these papers push on you, from the left and the right.

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