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National press goes on the attack over privacy injunctions

The national press continued to rally against 'judge-made’ privacy laws today after two controversia

In the first case a high-profile premiership footballer's attempts to gag revelations of his six-month affair with Big Brother contestant Imogen Thomas was upheld. In the second case a rare "contra mundum" - latin for "against the world" - order was made, meaning the ban was "neverending and applied to anyone and everyone", according to a report in the Daily Mail.

The Times made its point in dramatic fashion with a heavily redacted story on page three which claims: "The secrecy orders override the traditional principle of open justice in favour of the right to privacy or to prevent the risk of harm to family members who may be embarrassed by the revelations."

The Times also highlights a broken pledge from politicians that human rights laws what not be used to create a "legal right to privacy behind the back of Parliament".

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Is anyone prepared to solve the NHS funding crisis?

As long as the political taboo on raising taxes endures, the service will be in financial peril. 

It has long been clear that the NHS is in financial ill-health. But today's figures, conveniently delayed until after the Conservative conference, are still stunningly bad. The service ran a deficit of £930m between April and June (greater than the £820m recorded for the whole of the 2014/15 financial year) and is on course for a shortfall of at least £2bn this year - its worst position for a generation. 

Though often described as having been shielded from austerity, owing to its ring-fenced budget, the NHS is enduring the toughest spending settlement in its history. Since 1950, health spending has grown at an average annual rate of 4 per cent, but over the last parliament it rose by just 0.5 per cent. An ageing population, rising treatment costs and the social care crisis all mean that the NHS has to run merely to stand still. The Tories have pledged to provide £10bn more for the service but this still leaves £20bn of efficiency savings required. 

Speculation is now turning to whether George Osborne will provide an emergency injection of funds in the Autumn Statement on 25 November. But the long-term question is whether anyone is prepared to offer a sustainable solution to the crisis. Health experts argue that only a rise in general taxation (income tax, VAT, national insurance), patient charges or a hypothecated "health tax" will secure the future of a universal, high-quality service. But the political taboo against increasing taxes on all but the richest means no politician has ventured into this territory. Shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander has today called for the government to "find money urgently to get through the coming winter months". But the bigger question is whether, under Jeremy Corbyn, Labour is prepared to go beyond sticking-plaster solutions. 

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.