England's White Dragon

England's White Dragon
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Friday, 1 April 2011

Cameron’s double standards

Cameron's rubbish over English tuition fee prediction

British Prime Minister David Cameron has faced
criticism for having claimed that tuition fees of £9,000 a year would be
exceptional under the new funding arrangements for universities in England.

At PMQs on 30 March 2011, opposition leader Ed Miliband said that the
changes had been "sold" to the public on the basis that £6,000 fees
would be normal and universities would only be able to charge the maximum £9,000
"in exceptional circumstances".

But of the 23 universities that have announced their fees for the year
beginning 2012, 18 have said they will charge the maximum amount, he told MPs.

"It's not the exception, it's the rule," Mr Miliband
concluded, claiming the Treasury would have to pay out more money than expected
to fund the higher loans.

Mr Cameron said: "Universities can only charge £9,000 if they go
through a number of steps to prove that they really are improving access to

He added that the Office for Fair Access would decide whether an
institution could go to the £9,000 limit.

"Very tough rules have been published," he said.

Libya and Cameron’s double standards

Mr Cameron also told MPs that the British government would not rule out
arming Libyan insurgents to protect civilians.

He said the UN Security Council resolution would not block the supply of
weapons "in certain circumstances" despite an arms embargo on Libya.

But he was urged to use "extreme caution" by former Liberal
Democrat leader Sir Menzies Campbell.

The legal position "was by no means clear" and the political
consequences of any policy would be "very difficult to predict", Sir
Menzies said.

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