Another day of British politics, another daunting challenge to the nation’s attention span, another chance to slip some bad news past them. Here are five stories you may have missed today:
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In the normal run of things a big story. A US Congressional report
has found that HSBC was able to avoid prosecution for money laundering because of the effect this might have had on financial markets. It found that George Osborne had tried to influence the inquiry: warning, along with the UK banking regulator, that prosecution could lead to a “global financial disaster”. This intervention, the report found, “played a significant role” in the decision not to prosecute.
Committee on Climate Change
A report from the Committee on Climate Change
found that the UK is “not sufficiently prepared” for climate change. The 2,000-page document detailed a “cascade of risks” resulting in Day-After-Tomorrow-like scenarios: bridges, electricity-lines and gas-mains wiped out by flooding, thousands of elderly dying of heat-stress; over-tilled soil lying cracked and unyielding in the bridge-less wilderness.
A report from leading health think tank The King’s Fund
found that the NHS ended 2015 with the largest deficit in its history – three times last year’s. Unless things change, it said, cuts in staffing and a nosedive in care-quality are “inevitable”.In passing it also delivered a crushing blow to those Brexiteers who hoped leaving might help the NHS: the kind of economic shock the UK now faces, the report finds, would pose “a serious risk to patient care”. The solution? Increase waiting times targets, and “review” Jeremy Hunt’s beloved seven-day services. Brutal stuff.
Tweets containing Xenophobic language spiked “significantly” after the EU referendum result and have stayed high since, according to a report by think-tank Demos
. It logged over 13,000 tweets sent between the 24th June and 1st June which expressed “xenophobic or anti-immigrant attitudes”. It also found some 2,400 reported xenophobic incidents on twitter following the referendum result – which seems to agree with earlier police figures of a 57% increase in reports of xenophobic abuse.
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A warning from the education watchdog Ofsted
: further education providers are “falling short” in protecting students from extremism. Its report found “too many” colleges and learning institutions treating this kind of thing as “little more than a tick-box exercise” - some making “no effort” whatsoever. Ofsted’s Paul Joyce said: “It is worrying that inspectors saw examples of poor practice that I’ve no doubt would shock parents and learners alike.”