Morning Call: pick of the papers

The ten must-read pieces from this morning's papers.

1. If trade unions don't fight the workers' corner - others will (Independent)

The political and media establishments treat unions as if they have no legitimate place in life, writes Owen Jones.

2. We are fighting Islamism from ignorance, as we did the cold war (Guardian)

The west wasted trillions in needless conflict with the USSR, says Simon Jenkins. Now we are being brainwashed into confrontation with Iran.

3. The 50p tax rate is a bomb that a brave Chancellor would defuse (Daily Telegraph)

A radical Budget from George Osborne will prevent an exodus of wealth from the UK, says Fraser Nelson.

4. Why reform of House of Lords is a botch (Financial Times)

Reform is likely to make the process of legislating more difficult and its quality even worse, warns Martin Wolf.

5. The no-fuss way to elect the House of Lords (Times) (£)

Here's how to make the Upper House more democratic without stuffing it full of third-rate party hacks, writes Philip Collins.

6. Tax credit cut will hit hardest those the Tories love to praise - working families (Guardian)

The government is hurting those trying to stay off the dole, while filling workplaces with free staff, writes Polly Toynbee. Voters should be shocked.

7. Is there really no alternative? Let Irish voters be the judge of that (Independent)

Solutions are being pushed on the basis of "no alternative", says Adrian Hamilton. Yet there are alternatives.

8. Pc David Rathband: where was the help he needed? (Daily Telegraph)

The support system is failing wounded police officers, writes Peter Stanford.

9. Even the lawyers oppose secret courts! (Daily Mail)

Ministers are attempting to undermine the treasured principle "that public justice should be dispensed in public", says a Daily Mail editorial.

10. UK must not sell off Wedgwood's legacy (Financial Times)

We must celebrate the Steve Jobs of his day, writes Richard Lambert.

Newsgroup Newspapers Ltd/Published with permission
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Everything that is wonderful about The Sun’s HMS Global Britain Brexit boat

And all who sail in her.

Just when you’d suffered a storm called Doris, spotted a sad Ukip man striding around the Potteries in top-to-toe tweed, watched 60 hours of drama about the Queen being a Queen and thought Britain couldn’t get any more Brexity, The Sun on Sunday has launched a boat called HMS Global Britain.


Photo: Newsgroup Newspapers Ltd/Photos published with permission from The Sun

Taking its name from one of Theresa May’s more optimistic characterisations of the UK post-Europe (it’s better than “Red, white and blue Brexit”, your mole grants), this poor abused vessel is being used by the weekend tabloid to host a gaggle of Brexiteers captained by Michael Gove – and a six-foot placard bearing the terms of Article 50.

Destination? Bloody Brussels, of course!

“Cheering MPs boarded HMS Global Britain at Westminster before waving off our message on a 200-mile voyage to the heart of the EU,” explains the paper. “Our crew started the journey at Westminster Pier to drive home the clear message: ‘It’s full steam ahead for Brexit.’”

Your mole finds this a wonderful spectacle. Here are the best bits:

Captain Michael Gove’s rise to power

The pinnacle of success in Brexit Britain is to go from being a potential Prime Minister to breaking a bottle of champagne against the side of a boat with a fake name for a publicity stunt about the policy you would have been enacting if you’d made it to Downing Street. Forget the experts! This is taking back control!


 

“God bless her, and all who sail in her,” he barks, smashing the bottle as a nation shudders.

The fake name

Though apparently photoshopped out of some of the stills, HMS Global Britain’s real name is clear in The Sun’s footage of the launch. It is actually called The Edwardian, its name painted proudly in neat, white lettering on its hull. Sullied by the plasticky motorway pub sign reading “HMS Global Britain” hanging limply from its deck railings. Poor The Edwardian. Living in London and working a job that involves a lot of travel, it probably voted Remain. It probably joined the Lib Dems following the Article 50 vote. It doesn’t want this shit.

The poses

All the poses in this picture are excellent. Tory MP Julian Brazier’s dead-eyed wave, the Demon Headmaster on his holidays. Former education minister Tim Loughton wearing an admiral’s hat and toting a telescope, like he dreamed of as a little boy. Tory MP Andrea Jenkyns’ Tim Henman fist of regret. Labour MP Kate Hoey’s cheeky grin belied by her desperately grasping, steadying hand. Former Culture Secretary John Whittingdale’s jolly black power salute. And failed Prime Ministerial candidate Michael Gove – a child needing a wee who has proudly found the perfect receptacle.

The metaphor

In a way, this is the perfect representation of Brexit. Ramshackle, contrived authenticity, unclear purpose, and universally white. But your mole isn’t sure this was the message intended by its sailors… the idea of a Global Britain may well be sunk.

I'm a mole, innit.