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Morning Call: pick of the papers

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

1. Scotland's new era beckons, regardless of how it votes in a stupid referendum (Guardian)

Ultimately, there is little to choose between the devo-max pledged by unionist parties and what Alex Salmond offers, writes Simon Jenkins.

2. The crushed Lib Dems have a bright future (Times)

The protest vote has gone, but Nick Clegg’s party can still hold the balance of power, writes Philip Collins. Ditching him would be suicidal.

3. Welcome to the age of post-interventionism (Independent)

Military intervention in other countries is not the only way for America to show its strength, writes Mary Dejevsky.

4.  A weak France could be the end of Europe (Financial Times)

The vote for Marine Le Pen’s National Front was a powerful warning of the perils of inaction, says Philip Stephens.

5. The war games are over – and it’s the Tories who are smiling (Daily Telegraph)

After the stress-test of last week's local elections, the big parties are in very different places, writes Dan Hodges.

6. The stoning of Farzana Iqbal is another grim step in Pakistan’s descent into chaos (Independent)

The ghastly fact is that this murder was nothing out of the ordinary, writes Peter Popham.

7. Will America start to unlock its prison gates? (Times)

The world’s biggest jailer is questioning both the cost and the effect of incarcerating so many, writes Justin Webb.

8. The mysterious Mr Lansley will hardly set Brussels alight (Daily Telegraph)

David Cameron's choice of Andrew Lansley for the UK’s next European Commissioner has not met with Tory approval, writes Isabel Hardman.

9. A split UK is not for a week but for ever (Financial Times)

Politicians sound like hucksters making rival pitches in a debate that has become paltry, writes Martin Wolf.

10. Liberal Democrats: losing the plot (Guardian)

A successful coup requires passion, but also timing, says a Guardian editorial. And this was not the moment for the party to begin searching its soul.

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Donald Trump vs Barack Obama: How the inauguration speeches compared

We compared the two presidents on trade, foreign affairs and climate change – so you (really, really) don't have to.

After watching Donald Trump's inaugural address, what better way to get rid of the last few dregs of hope than by comparing what he said with Barack Obama's address from 2009? 

Both thanked the previous President, with Trump calling the Obamas "magnificent", and pledged to reform Washington, but the comparison ended there. 

Here is what each of them said: 

On American jobs


The state of our economy calls for action, bold and swift.  And we will act, not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.  We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.  We'll restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost.  We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.  And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.


For many decades we've enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry, subsidized the armies of other countries while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military.

One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores with not even a thought about the millions and millions of American workers that were left behind.

Obama had a plan for growth. Trump just blames the rest of the world...

On global warming


With old friends and former foes, we'll work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet.


On the Middle East:


To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West, know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. 


We will re-enforce old alliances and form new ones and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the earth.

On “greatness”


In reaffirming the greatness of our nation we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned.


America will start winning again, winning like never before.


On trade


This is the journey we continue today.  We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth.  Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began.  Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week, or last month, or last year.  Our capacity remains undiminished.  


We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our product, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.

Protection will lead to great prosperity and strength. I will fight for you with every breath in my body, and I will never ever let you down.

Stephanie Boland is digital assistant at the New Statesman. She tweets at @stephanieboland