The Staggers 23 December 2009 Morning call: pick of the comment The ten must-read pieces from this morning's newspapers Print HTML 1. This is no smoking gun, nor Iranian bomb (Guardian) Nothing in the published "intelligence documents" shows that Iran is close to having nuclear weapons, says Norman Dombey. 2. After dealing with US health care, no wonder Barack Obama needs a doctor (Daily Telegraph) The gruelling, eight-month health-care debate typified how lopsided and minority-dominated the US Senate has become. Alex Spillius outlines its problems of representation and filibustering. 3. Why market sentiment has no credibility (Financial Times) Robert Skidelsky says that governments must call the bankers' bluff. The same markets that made the taxpayers' bank bailouts necessary are now demanding fiscal consolidation in return for their continued support for governments. 4. From "Yes, we can" to "No, we can't" (Independent) Adrian Hamilton reflects on Obama's first year in power -- a year that opened with unbridled enthusiasm and hope -- and says that the US president has been constrained by the recession and by domestic considerations. 5. Bank charges criminalise us for being human (Times) It's not fair to be penalised for going slightly over your overdraft limit, says Melanie Reid. The system is built to catch us out and the fines are disproportionately large. 6. The perfect gift? How about an end to loneliness -- and not just at Christmas (Guardian) Jonathan Freedland on loneliness, a social enterprise for lifting people out of it and the challenging lessons public services could learn from it. 7. The many are being sacrificed for the few (Independent) Les Ebdon offers an initial reaction to the news of Lord Mandelson's planned cuts of £130m from university funding in 2010-2011, and says that they were avoidable. 8. Balkan odyssey (Times) Serbia's application to join the EU offers hope of overcoming a dark recent history, says the Times leading article. 9. Who will be next year's most hated? (Daily Telegraph) Bankers and politicians have made a start, but there's plenty of loathing left, says Tracy Corrigan. Who's next in line -- lawyers? Accountants? 10. To keep on the move, we'll have to spend more (Times) How do other countries cope with two foot of snow when two inches brings us to a halt, asks Stephen Joseph? They invest in concrete and steel. Here, rising demand is met with spending cuts. › Uniting two people, dividing a continent From only £1 per week Subscribe More Related articles The Fire Brigades Union reaffiliates to Labour - what does it mean? John Gray on the future of the state on the NS Podcast Could Labour lose the Oldham by-election?