Morning Call: pick of the papers

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

1. My advice to Labour: be of good cheer, be bold, stop jumping at shadows (Guardian)

 Forget the Wallace and Grommit jibes, says Polly Toynbee. Leaders are the embodiment of their policies – and Ed Miliband's can win him the election.

2. Cameron has an inspiring message, so let's hear it (Daily Telegraph)

With the rise of Ukip, it is crucial that the PM makes the argument for a Tory government, says Fraser Nelson.

3. Syria deal holds a lesson – talk to Iran (Financial Times)

After all the mistakes with Damascus, the US has a chance to put things right with Tehran, writes Philip Stephens.

4. The Blair-Brown war cost the Labour party dear (Guardian)

When Labour returns to office, Ed Miliband must ensure that the errors of the last generation are not repeated by his, writes Benjamin Wegg-Prosser.

5. The Bedroom Tax: The Tories’ idea of fairness that could yet return to haunt them (Independent)

So is the bedroom tax the new poll tax, asks Donald Macintyre. The wording favours the critics.

6. Labour’s salvation? The hated Lib Dems (Times)

Fear and loathing of Nick Clegg’s party runs deep on the left, but wooing them is the way back to power, writes Philip Collins.

7. Who do you think you’re kidding, Mr Schauble? (Daily Telegraph)

The eurozone may have avoided calamity, but all the underlying problems are still there, says Jeremy Warner. 

8. How Labour's lies and spin poisoned politics (Daily Mail)

The revelations contained in Damian McBride's memoirs drag New Labour's reputation to even lower depths, says a Daily Mail editorial.

9. Fed gets it right but says it wrong (Financial Times)

It will now be harder for markets to trust the central bank, says an FT editorial.

10. Italy needs this to be the end of Berlusconi (Independent)

Can this disgraced man really even believe what he is saying, asks Peter Popham. 

The ten must-read comment pieces from this morning's papers.
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An alternative Trainspotting script for John Humphrys’ Radio 4 “Choose Life” tribute

Born chippy.

Your mole often has Radio 4’s Today programme babbling away comfortingly in the background while emerging blinking from the burrow. So imagine its horror this morning, when the BBC decided to sully this listening experience with John Humphrys doing the “Choose Life” monologue from Trainspotting.

“I chose not to choose life: I chose something else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who needs reasons when you’ve got Radio 4?” he concluded, as a nation cringed.

Introduced as someone who has “taken issue with modernity”, Humphrys launched into the film character Renton’s iconic rant against the banality of modern life.

But Humphrys’ role as in-studio curmudgeon is neither endearing nor amusing to this mole. Often tasked with stories about modern technology and digital culture by supposedly mischievous editors, Humphrys sounds increasingly cranky and ill-informed. It doesn’t exactly make for enlightening interviews. So your mole has tampered with the script. Here’s what he should have said:

“Choose life. Choose a job and then never retire, ever. Choose a career defined by growling and scoffing. Choose crashing the pips three mornings out of five. Choose a fucking long contract. Choose interrupting your co-hosts, politicians, religious leaders and children. Choose sitting across the desk from Justin Webb at 7.20 wondering what you’re doing with your life. Choose confusion about why Thought for the Day is still a thing. Choose hogging political interviews. Choose anxiety about whether Jim Naughtie’s departure means there’s dwindling demand for grouchy old men on flagship political radio shows. Choose a staunch commitment to misunderstanding stories about video games and emoji. Choose doing those stories anyway. Choose turning on the radio and wondering why the fuck you aren’t on on a Sunday morning as well. Choose sitting on that black leather chair hosting mind-numbing spirit-crushing game shows (Mastermind). Choose going over time at the end of it all, pishing your last few seconds on needlessly combative questions, nothing more than an obstacle to that day’s editors being credited. Choose your future. Choose life . . .”

I'm a mole, innit.