Episode 11 The Big Questions


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Episode 11

Nicky Campbell presents live debate from Cardiff. He asks: Are Europe's powerless taking control?; Does a nation's happiness matter?; Does forgiving set you free?


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The route to happiness, and forgiving the people who hurt us.

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Good morning, I'm Niki Campbell, welcome to The Big Questions.

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Today we're live from the Michaelston Community

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Welcome, everybody, to The Big Questions.

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This week the Dutch held a general election.

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Geert Wilder's far-right Party of Freedom won 20 seats and was only

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beaten by the centre-right People's Party, led by

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Prime Minister Mark Rutte, which gained 33 seats.

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But Mr Rutte had to emulate some of the populist sentiments espoused

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Next month the Front National's leader, Marie le Pen's

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anti-immigration and anti-Muslim ideas will be put to the test in

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Polls predict she will go through to the second round in May.

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And in September Alternatif fur Deutschland, the German far right,

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will challenge Mrs Merkel's reign as Chancellor.

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Populist parties and policies have been gaining ground here too,

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with the Brexit vote and, in Wales, Ukip's seven seats

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The idea that ordinary people have been exploited by a privileged

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liberal elite seems to have taken hold across the continent.

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Are Europe's powerless taking control?

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David Goodhart, you have written an interesting book about this. You can

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expand some of the ideas. It is the dispossessed, be ignored, the

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neglected, the marginalised, the powerless kicking back. What are

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they kicking back against? It is true, but not a single Populist

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party is in government across Europe, unless you include Poland

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and Hungary, as some people do. Populism does represent a partly

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legitimate reaction to the over domination of our politics by quite

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a large group of people, most of them perfectly decent people, in my

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book I call them The Anywheres. They tend to be well educated. They have

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been to a good university and so on. They have dominated the political

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agenda to a certain extent. The expansion of higher education and

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the less good options people who don't take the higher education

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path. And the Middle status jobs that people used to enjoyed that are

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not there so much. Large-scale immigration, have freedom of

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movement, people can take advantage of it if they are highly educated.

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You are a lawyer and you can go and work in Berlin for a couple of

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years. One third of all people working in food manufacturing come

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from Eastern Europe and that has happened in the last ten years. You

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see it as a threat and competition. What about the social agenda, social

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progress that has happened? Most people in some ways, go along with

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that. Some people might call it a contradiction in terms, but

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something I call decent populism. If you look at the rise of

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liberalisation on race, gender and sexuality, the vast majority of

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people in this country, including the more subtle communitarian, go

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along with those changes. There is some pretty hard-core authoritarian

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populism represented by Geert Wilders, extreme anti-Islamic agenda

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and then you have more mainstream and decent populace, I will include

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Ukip in that. But the argument now is how we give the somewhere is a

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legitimate voice. They feel and have been to some extent, excluded from

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the political agenda. But the big thing among society, the The

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Anywheres, and you can see an argument going on between those who

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say, we have screwed up and got this wrong. We have not been representing

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the views and interests of the large part of our population. And those

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who say no, these are the Barbarians. The outcome of the

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debate and the future of politics depends on it. You mention Ukip,

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John Rees-Evans, who are the people left behind, why are they

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antipathetic to the liberal consensus? Frankly because the elite

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liberal, highly educated people who think they represent the ordinary

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people and who often campaign this fiercely to help ordinary people,

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frankly don't understand ordinary people. You do? I think Ukip is most

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in touch with the ordinary people and that was proved on the 23rd of

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June last year. On the 22nd of June, three quarters of our allegedly

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representative elected people in parliament came out in favour of

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remaining in the European Union. The next day, we proved quite clearly,

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the majority of people in this country want people out. You've got

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kicked in the backside in Stoke? That is obvious. How would you

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characterise the beliefs of the ordinary people who are at odds with

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the liberal elite, what do they believe, what do they think? They

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want to be left alone to work hard, to support their family, run their

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own country and not be interfered with by, you know, foreign agendas.

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The ordinary British person respects other nations, is friendly to

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foreigners coming here, wants to treat people decently, but believes

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our elected representatives whose salaries they pay and who they

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elect, have a primary responsibility, and moral

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responsibility to look after the interests primarily of the people of

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this country and not the people of other countries. Do you want to come

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in here? I agree there is a disconnect between political elite

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and everyone else, and I think that has happened over the years, but the

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answer isn't to say, they are wrong, they are right and this division

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between the elite and everyone else is to say, what is underlying that

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isn't an understanding of immigration and what is happening,

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but economic anxiety, what has happened is you call them a liberal

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elite and they focus on a progressive agenda in terms of gay

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marriage and equality, which is a good thing, but they have ignored

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issues of economic equality. They have ignored that they have

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continuously cut taxes for corporations, they are hitting the

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poorest the most. Why are some people who are uncomfortable with

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changes in our society, why are they uncomfortable, why haven't they

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adapted and gone on with the general flow? Faiza Shaheen, do you want to

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answer that? Some people are not comfortable, we need the

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conversation. What is the conversation? People say this to me,

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I am worried about immigration and I think it is taking jobs. It is

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understanding why it is. My answer is, tell me about your workplace,

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what has happened? Tell me about your neighbourhood, what has

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happened? Sometimes the isn't a story about immigration, sometimes

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there is. A very often, these people are coming in and undercutting

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wages. But when you look at who is allowing that to happen, it is the

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bosses. It is a misplaced anger. Are they misinformed? It was the bankers

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that crashed the economy, we have to remember why this stuff has

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happened. It is because of an economic liberal elite, not just

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progressive. John, come back in. Say you have a company and you are

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competing in your industry against your competitors and you have this

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situation where the government has allowed our labour market to be

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massively oversaturated, driven down wages. You have got to compete, you

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want to drop your operating costs. You may be the most patriotically is

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on in the country, but it is deliberately possible to pay more to

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a local person than it is to be someone from abroad. The government

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has said we will control immigration, not oversaturated the

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job's market. I didn't get a chance to make my point. Patriotically

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employers... Patriotically employers? Patriotically employers,

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the type that Faiza Shaheen is saying the cause of the employment

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of foreigners rather than locals, if the government controlled

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immigration we would be on a more even playing field. You cannot blame

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the bosses, they don't control immigration. We are setting the

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debate up in an narrow way, but there is only one answer, the

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dispossessed taking control? No, they are giving more control over to

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those who have fundamentally exploited them. The election of

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Donald Trump in the United States of America is about many things. Is he

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going to drain the swamp, make circumstances better for the

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American worker or is he going to self and rich? Is the exploitative?

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Creme De La Creme he is exploitative. When we remove

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political economy from the arguments, we make it about

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constraining the circumstances of the debate. Are people being conned?

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People are frustrated they exist in a precarious existence. There are

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much greater problems they face and they look to the wrong arguments.

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They look to the wrong causes and they look to symptoms of their

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exploitation, they don't look to the global financial crisis. People are

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being fooled, people are being conned and people are being

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exploited? People like this gentleman here. You can put your

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hand down now. A couple of years ago a Tory MP was sacked more or less

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for calling somebody a pleb. Why don't people talking like this just

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call us plebs, because I am a populist. The way people are talking

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like this, that I have lived through some halcyon world for the last 50

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years of my life since I started voting. It hasn't been like that.

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These politicians, they have led us down roads from the very beginning.

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It started in 64 when I voted to join the Common market and I was

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told a pack of lies then. It carried on with Harold Poulsen further on,

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the pound in your pocket when the pound was being devalued. Do you

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think they are lying to you? Of course they are, the way they talk

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down to, it is unbelievable. David Goodhart, that has distilled how

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people feel? A lot of people that run the political parties, the

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openness of the kind that has evolved over the last 20, 25 years,

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much more globalisation, European Union, freedom of movement, all of

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these things work for some people and don't work so well for other

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people. What Faiza Shaheen saying about employers, perfectly

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illustrates the rise of populism because people on the left say to

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people know, you don't feel that, look at this. They keep wanting to

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change the subject, which is why people think the centre-left parties

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don't represent them. You are right about employers. The national social

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contracts in employment have become disregarded. The amount of money

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employers spend on training in the last 20 years has fallen by one

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third. There is a reserve army of labour they can just take from

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continental Europe. Do you realise how many construction

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apprenticeships began last year? Just 8000. We are meant to be

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building millions of houses and we are not educating and training

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people to do it. We have moved from the situation in the 1970s where we

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had a trade surplus of 20 million and now we have a trade deficit of 5

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billion. To tell people we are not seeing decline, people are seeing

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it. But are they blaming that decline on the international

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financial markets? Are they blaming it on the super-rich who are

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exploiting them? Or, are they blaming the people close by? We all

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want to buy cheap goods that are made elsewhere? Of course we should

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be doing something about globalisation, but the story that

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has emerged is about those people that have lost, turning against each

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other. When we talk about the pilots, it is not just the white

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working class, the white working class is multiracial. Cleaning,

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caring and those are low paid jobs. Instead of this group coming

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together and saying, we want more representation, we want to make sure

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policies of their two protectors and we don't have zero hours

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contracts... We have taken so much out of politics.

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We're doing an enquiry into the growth of technocracy. So many

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things have been taken out of the... Technocrats are inevitably anywhere

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people. People with the instincts of the highly educated, the preferences

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of the highly educated. This has not a democracy. People are saying, we

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want some of it back. We mention Trump. What is it you like about

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Donald Trump? The fact is, what you said... I would like to ask about

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Donald Trump? What she said is correct, what Faiza said is correct.

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We are not looking at the real enemy and we are arguing amongst herself.

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Organisations like Gideon's educates people about this. I have read a

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couple of his white papers. What they teach is that one of the causes

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in the reduction in employment is the automated tendency, this is

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about Trump. OK. He has an automated tendency. What is it you like about

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him? We have not got a lot of time. Because he wants to reduce

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regulation. If you take away regulations, you're harming the

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people, that is what people think. That is nonsense. You take away

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regulations and you give small businesses the opportunity is to

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compete. Does he represent the ordinary man and woman? He is

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fighting for them. He knows how to create jobs and make money. You do

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not have to like the man. But you have to acknowledge she knows how to

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create jobs. He knows how to make money critically affect -- pretty

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effectively as well. Michael is over here. I do not think Trump's

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admissions are promising. We have international economies and national

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politics. One camp is to make things at the level of the nation state, to

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return power to politics. This is the Trumps, the Ukips of the world.

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The power is no longer there. Trump's solution, opening coalmines

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again, that is the past, not the future. We need to be more

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imaginative if we want a better tomorrow. This gentleman, hello.

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People like Trump and Theresa May to an extent in this country, Theresa

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May has seen an opportunity with a very weak opposition in the Labour

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Party, the votes have been haemorrhaging to Ukip. She is trying

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to take over the reins from Ukip. Her rhetoric is about trying to

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increase the Tory vote might rather than what is good for the

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dispossessed. She talks about the just about managing. The black

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T-shirt. Good morning. We have heard a lot about misplaced anger. I agree

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with those sort of sentiment but how do we deal with this? We have heard

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about all these facts and figures, alternative facts, fake news as it

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is called, bandied around. I am a teacher. I think the key to this is

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to get young people to think critically about what they're

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hearing and seeing. I have brought some of my students here today. That

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is what we do, we think critically, so they are resilient to some of the

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so-called facts and figures. It a vital lesson. Absolutely.

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APPLAUSE Have people been lied to? I think

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that we should trust people to be able to think critically about what

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they are being told. But the idea that the solution is education, that

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somehow if we just educate children to be able to see through the other

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side, which is all lies, and Arisaig, which is the truth, that we

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will solve the problems. Your point is important. We have depoliticise

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the massive range of what used to be the bread-and-butter of politics.

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And older left-wing idea was that any cook can govern, there is this

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idea that politics and economic sets something that every day people

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should be able to understand. Now we have outsourced those questions to

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technocrats. That is not enough people any more. Instead of

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understanding that, the left has dumbed down. The conversation is

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about symbolic things, about language. It is not speaking to

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everyday people. I completely agree. Lots of these questions, any

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economics and politics, it has been siphoned away from people. We're not

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having that conversation in. I would agree about the lack of

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representation among MPs from people from working-class backgrounds.

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Black communities are heavily underrepresented in government. I

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think we agree on that point. My point is that this narrative of

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divide and rule, blaming the immigrants, is not helping. We need

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to think about how we come together. The left would say, Syriza are good,

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Kadima are bad. It is the wrong sort of populism. I do not speak for the

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left. The left is lots of different people, as is the right. My point is

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we do not have the political leaders that will come forward and really

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tell us the story of how we can work. And we do work. This is the

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world you do not see. Working-class people are growing up together,

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going to school together, people are marrying each other. That is not the

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Liberal elite. We see that in working-class communities as well.

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It is about the pace of change. Those people who feel comfortable

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with change, because they have achieved identities, done well at

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school, they have successful careers. They can deal with it. Lots

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of people see rapid change as a kind of loss. What kind of change the

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scene, not just economically, social change? This is not so much about

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material things. This is about no longer feeling your valued by

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society. All the value has gone on the cognitive elite, people who well

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in exams. It is also about group attachments. People do not feel

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gripped attachments. They do not play such a high value a national

:21:34.:21:37.

citizenship because they do not need it so much. For a lot of people, it

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is part of the security and familiarity that people want. Is

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this generational, because disproportionately older people

:21:47.:21:51.

voted for Brexit? I do not think so. James Tredwell. Surely it is about

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both. We are having these old comparisons of left and right. One

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of the themes about the left, the political left and right, is how

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close together they have become. Where is the political

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representation for what would have been the old side of the left to

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say, what we need is national investment, we do not need

:22:13.:22:18.

austerity, we need a different set? Even now, to represent old-style

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social democracy, the welfare state, it is made out as if it is from

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North Korea. There has been an absolute conversion that makes

:22:30.:22:32.

neoliberalism and neoliberal capitalism the only economic system.

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Is there a way back? It is not neoliberalism. When investment has

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happened, it has not necessarily connected to the people who should

:22:44.:22:47.

have benefited. That is where Faiza is right, it is the level of

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understanding that our politicians have of meeting the needs of the

:22:52.:22:56.

people they are serving. The last word. There are real issues for us

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to be grappling with. People do not like the changes that are coming in

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the future. Tony Blair was on the Andrew Marr programme this morning.

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Is there a way back for the Blairite Centre? I hope not.

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If you have something to say about that debate,

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log on to bbc.co.uk/thebigquestions, and follow the link to where you can

:23:19.:23:21.

We're also debating live this morning in Cardiff: Does

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Get tweeting or emailing on those topics now or send us any other

:23:27.:23:31.

ideas or thoughts you may have about the programme.

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Tomorrow, it's International Happiness Day.

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Don't worry, being happy is not being made compulsory...yet.

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But governments are increasingly interested in measuring

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their nation's happiness levels and probing why some countries

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Denmark tops the league table of happiest countries.

:23:51.:23:56.

The UK is 23rd out of 157 nations, beaten by the Scandinavians,

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the Dutch, Austria, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, the North

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Americans and even some South American countries.

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And the UK itself has happiness high and low spots,

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with the Welsh borough of Blaenau Gwent, here

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in South Wales, having one of the biggest gaps between people

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Liverpool, Sunderland and Rotherham are similarly miserable.

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Well, researchers have found that the regions in Britain

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with the highest "wellbeing inequality" were more likely

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This will link to first debate. Michael, when you're talking about

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happiness, you said earlier run, it is a positive conscious state. The

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easiest way to understand happiness is anything which feels good to you.

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Unhappiness is anything which feels bad. Elation and contentment are

:25:08.:25:11.

different types of positive states, anger and fear are different kinds

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of unhappy states. We all have those at different times of the day. I

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like being with my family, walking the dog, playing my guitar. It makes

:25:21.:25:25.

me happy. When I am playing my guitar, the rest of the family are

:25:26.:25:37.

not happy. Yes, we should be looking at how to maximise happiness

:25:38.:25:40.

overall. How do you do that? Where we can really start is by trying to

:25:41.:25:42.

understand what happiness is, and how it works. The standout fight

:25:43.:25:46.

from the happiness literature, we have been collecting data on this

:25:47.:25:50.

for the last 60 years. The most surprising thing is that happiness

:25:51.:25:54.

has not increased. Self-reports of how satisfied people are with their

:25:55.:25:59.

lives, it has not increased. It has not the crease? It has not

:26:00.:26:03.

increased. It has stayed flat. Despite the fact we are much richer,

:26:04.:26:08.

much healthier, we live longer, despite what you might read in the

:26:09.:26:09.

daily Mail, we are safer than ever before,

:26:10.:26:29.

we have better technology. We have everything which we think should

:26:30.:26:31.

make life better, apart from happiness. That should prompt us to

:26:32.:26:34.

as questions about what is going on. What do we do about this? The

:26:35.:26:36.

government are taking this seriously. They are setting out

:26:37.:26:38.

think-tanks, they are going into schools, they are talking about

:26:39.:26:40.

mindfulness in schools? Allgood? It sounds really good, and that is part

:26:41.:26:43.

of the reason we are talking about it now. Who's going to say, we

:26:44.:26:45.

should make everybody miserable. No one say that. I find it interesting.

:26:46.:26:51.

You would almost take the boxes of the claims that people make. I have

:26:52.:26:56.

wrote a book about it. Why have they become so powerful and why are they

:26:57.:27:02.

made in the same over over? One of those is the so-called paradox of

:27:03.:27:06.

prosperity. Happiness levels has stayed the same in spite of

:27:07.:27:09.

increased technology, all these things that should make us happy,

:27:10.:27:14.

increased wealth. But they never say, in spite of the fact that in

:27:15.:27:18.

the United States blacks can drink out of the same water fountain,

:27:19.:27:22.

still no happier, women have more freedom, still no happier. They do

:27:23.:27:27.

not make that argument. Why do we always choose those particular

:27:28.:27:32.

things? It reflects the fact we do not have a positive vision for

:27:33.:27:36.

society any more. We are disoriented from those things that used to be,

:27:37.:27:42.

wealth, well for the population, it will set people free, generalising.

:27:43.:27:45.

That is something that the left and right used to agree on. Could

:27:46.:27:51.

capitalism deliver the goods, that was the disagreement. Now it is

:27:52.:27:53.

difficult to think of a left-wing position that sees wealth in a

:27:54.:27:58.

positive way. The debate about prosperity becomes a bipartisan

:27:59.:28:05.

thing. Most people can agree on it. It depends on this view of

:28:06.:28:08.

happiness. Acquired characteristics? My parents got an eight on the

:28:09.:28:13.

happiness scale. I was born in the 1980s, so I should be and nine.

:28:14.:28:17.

Absolutely not. Everyone is born into a world that is new to them.

:28:18.:28:22.

You do not build on the happiness level. Does GDP have something to do

:28:23.:28:27.

with it, the wealth of the nation? People get over obsessed with GDP.

:28:28.:28:33.

In the 1960s, Robert Kennedy said, GDP measures everything except the

:28:34.:28:36.

things that make our existence worthwhile. It is not a big-screen

:28:37.:28:41.

television, it is a work in the forest? It as a whole range of

:28:42.:28:46.

things. When we are constructing policy, we try to compartmentalise.

:28:47.:28:52.

People do not existing categories. People'slives are diverse. A whole

:28:53.:29:04.

range of things make you happy, the impact on the quality of your life.

:29:05.:29:07.

Are obsessive focus on GDP, the figures we need to increase, the

:29:08.:29:10.

numbers go up and everyone will be happy, of course, it is about the

:29:11.:29:13.

economy, but not just about the economy. There is this

:29:14.:29:17.

disorientation towards what that actually means. It reflects the

:29:18.:29:20.

depoliticisation of the economic ground. Leave that up to the

:29:21.:29:25.

technocrats. You worry about your family and your little microcosm.

:29:26.:29:32.

GDP really does matter. People trying to deflect attention from

:29:33.:29:35.

that, when the economy does not grow, who pays? It is not the only

:29:36.:29:39.

thing that matters. How can we construct public policy

:29:40.:29:56.

that recognises that nuances? It is an impossible dream, something that

:29:57.:30:02.

makes one group content will make another pretty miserable? If you

:30:03.:30:11.

limit the use of motor cars, a lot of environmentalists would say, yes,

:30:12.:30:15.

get in there. People trying to get to work, people on the school run,

:30:16.:30:19.

petrol heads would be very arrestable. Indeed. I was hoping we

:30:20.:30:29.

would stick to your guitar playing. Relating to what was going on, we

:30:30.:30:36.

can think about GDP, a big picture measure of how society is doing.

:30:37.:30:41.

When we can think about the distribution of happiness in it. You

:30:42.:30:47.

began by talking about Denmark, routinely top of the world happiness

:30:48.:30:50.

index. What is it about Denmark we don't have. Denmark is one of the

:30:51.:30:58.

most equal countries in the world. So you are talking about something

:30:59.:31:03.

which you can reliably say people have a stake in. And traditionally

:31:04.:31:07.

thinking about public goods and the kind of society they are, which is

:31:08.:31:12.

more collectivist than ours has now become. Denmark has a way of

:31:13.:31:19.

thinking about a shared project, it is not trouble-free, it doesn't iron

:31:20.:31:23.

out your difficulties, but it is more meaningful to talk about

:31:24.:31:27.

happiness in Denmark because it's not so unequally distribution

:31:28.:31:35.

culling distributed in society. In Wales, why do people feel like they

:31:36.:31:40.

have been left behind or get a raw deal? Because they live in a

:31:41.:31:43.

society, firstly where there are huge disparities in wealth between

:31:44.:31:49.

them and others at the other end of the scale. There is a very poor

:31:50.:31:54.

public conversation. Is it pretty much coveting what other people

:31:55.:31:59.

have? It will feel relative, you will be happier in a society where

:32:00.:32:02.

you are in the same game as everybody else. But somebody who is

:32:03.:32:09.

not in the same game, but happiness has gone? It is about a society that

:32:10.:32:18.

places a huge amount of emphasis on your individual success being tied

:32:19.:32:21.

to your place in the consumer marketplace. If you fail to have the

:32:22.:32:25.

latest items, you don't have a value. That creates a continuing,

:32:26.:32:32.

nagging dissatisfaction for people, they continually feel that... I

:32:33.:32:40.

don't think that is a problem. We Prodl attire is the dissatisfaction

:32:41.:32:45.

and the feelings. Happy people quote Karl Marx, house might be great or

:32:46.:32:56.

small, as long as other houses are equally small. Then people were in a

:32:57.:33:03.

castle and then it is reduced to a halt and we say, Karl Marx says

:33:04.:33:12.

don't covet other people, but what Karl Marx is saying is that cattle

:33:13.:33:19.

could be yours, go out and take it. The happiness people, I love that.

:33:20.:33:23.

Where would we be without sadness as well? We would have no arts, where

:33:24.:33:30.

would Marcy B. Liz, I know you want to talk, you work in companies to

:33:31.:33:37.

try to get people to focus on well-being, content must

:33:38.:33:42.

unhappiness? I will be accused of being part of this happiness people

:33:43.:33:47.

think. I agree with the fact that GDP will focus on economic growth

:33:48.:33:52.

per se, we need economic growth when growth is needed, there is a

:33:53.:33:57.

brilliant economist who say, we have an economy grows whether or not we

:33:58.:34:02.

thrive. We an economy where we thrive, whether or not it grows. It

:34:03.:34:07.

feels like a small shift, but it is huge. At the moment, everything we

:34:08.:34:13.

do, health, economy, the private sector and the public sector is

:34:14.:34:16.

judged on whether or not it contributes to economic growth. In

:34:17.:34:21.

some spaces we need economic growth, in Blaenau Gwent, people desperately

:34:22.:34:26.

need growth in economy that benefits them. But we should all be judging

:34:27.:34:31.

ourselves, each other, our businesses and politicians by

:34:32.:34:34.

whether or not they are doing the sorts of things that help us to

:34:35.:34:37.

thrive as individuals or communities. It is an everybody

:34:38.:34:45.

thing. We need to make that shift. Gideon, there are people who think

:34:46.:34:50.

this is a load of... Careful what word I use here, baloney, they think

:34:51.:34:56.

it is a bit mind-numbing. If this can raise our content levels to

:34:57.:35:04.

Denmark, that is a good thing? Broadly, I would agree. We have to

:35:05.:35:09.

be careful on how simple we think that is. What we did to promote one

:35:10.:35:14.

group's happiness will be at the expense of another. It is not a

:35:15.:35:30.

fluffy thing. What it recognises is that actually we have a piece of

:35:31.:35:34.

legislation in Wales which recognises well-being. Don't talk

:35:35.:35:39.

about happiness per say, but happiness and well-being is

:35:40.:35:44.

intrinsically linked. We have the well-being of future generations

:35:45.:35:47.

act. We have to think about the social, economic and environment and

:35:48.:35:53.

cultural situations. So you can put that in public policy-making terms.

:35:54.:35:59.

You cannot legislate to make your inner being happy, but you can take

:36:00.:36:04.

decisions in a way... What do you want to do that he cannot do now to

:36:05.:36:11.

make is happier? If you think about the way we construct towns and

:36:12.:36:14.

villages. Will we do it in a way that will build a whole load of

:36:15.:36:19.

concrete monstrosities that don't have access to public space

:36:20.:36:22.

facilitate community interaction or engagement. Which don't have

:36:23.:36:26.

environmentally friendly public transport links. Or, will we

:36:27.:36:32.

construct them in a way that thinks about those different facets and

:36:33.:36:38.

relate back to well-being and happiness. That is what they were

:36:39.:36:42.

doing when they built Milton Keynes. The lady on the back row, it is

:36:43.:36:47.

great to be in Wales, a lot others Celtic people are not happy unless

:36:48.:36:54.

we are sad. Good morning. Are you one of the happiness people? I think

:36:55.:37:00.

I am a pragmatist, a realist. Whilst people don't have employment, food

:37:01.:37:04.

on the table and people don't feel safe and they don't have any meaning

:37:05.:37:09.

in their life, when communities are destroyed and weak into fourth

:37:10.:37:16.

generations... People are starving in East Africa? Blaenau Gwent, there

:37:17.:37:21.

are the food banks, Cardiff, all over South Wales, austerity is

:37:22.:37:26.

biting really hard. You cannot have happiness, you cannot have happiness

:37:27.:37:30.

if your fundamental basic human needs are not being met and that is

:37:31.:37:37.

a political issue. John Rees-Evans, what about this idea of people

:37:38.:37:42.

feeling they stifled. I know you say political has gone mad. What

:37:43.:37:48.

concerns me about this conversation, that is we are looking at

:37:49.:37:50.

circumstances as the cause of whether or not people are happy.

:37:51.:37:56.

Circumstances are important, but what is much more important is

:37:57.:38:00.

relationships. I know of somebody who has said that if he divorced his

:38:01.:38:05.

wife, he would be ?3500 better off each year. I think it is incredibly

:38:06.:38:12.

upsetting to me. This is because of government benefits and whatever.

:38:13.:38:17.

Legislation doesn't do anything to encourage people to stay married.

:38:18.:38:21.

The traditional values of this country what I believe have been

:38:22.:38:25.

responsible for our success, our prosperity. Family break-up... Is it

:38:26.:38:34.

same-sex relationships, relationships in communities. What

:38:35.:38:39.

is the type of relationship most people can identify with? Most

:38:40.:38:47.

people like marriage. Having positive relationships, healthy

:38:48.:38:51.

relationships is what makes us happy I merrily. Circumstances become a

:38:52.:38:58.

distant second. My have difficulty with the definition of happiness. An

:38:59.:39:02.

averaged out positive feeling, over a long period of time, I could

:39:03.:39:07.

understand. But maintaining relationships requires us to do

:39:08.:39:11.

things we don't feel good about. Doing our duty, working late at

:39:12.:39:16.

night to make sure we finish a project... Is a traditional marriage

:39:17.:39:21.

the bedrock of society... I thought you might respond like that.

:39:22.:39:26.

Relationships are important and do affect our happiness at an

:39:27.:39:31.

individual level. Well-being, taking it alongside measures of economic

:39:32.:39:36.

growth, it reminds us what it is for. Policymakers forget what it is

:39:37.:39:41.

for. It is not just about growing and it's not just about a segment of

:39:42.:39:46.

the population getting more money, it is about thinking overall what is

:39:47.:39:51.

happening. Are we creating the right environment for all people to

:39:52.:39:55.

flourish and have the chance of happiness? Last word, Michael. Are

:39:56.:40:03.

you happy with that debate? It has shown some of the things which are

:40:04.:40:07.

significant. There is this thought that if you focus on happiness, in

:40:08.:40:11.

means you are not caring about misery and people'slives. Stepford

:40:12.:40:20.

wives? What the literature is meant to shine a light on, you get a story

:40:21.:40:26.

of how inter-personal relationships are important, employment and

:40:27.:40:32.

unemployment is a driver of unhappiness. Open spaces? Yes, what

:40:33.:40:41.

comes out significantly is not the material things of the interpersonal

:40:42.:40:45.

relationships, it is mental health, so our relationships with ourselves.

:40:46.:40:51.

Not sidestepping anything of what she is talking about. That is the

:40:52.:40:58.

danger, it redefines inequality as a subjective things. And that is the

:40:59.:41:01.

debate over. Thank you very much indeed.

:41:02.:41:02.

You can join in all this morning's debates by logging

:41:03.:41:07.

on to bbc.co.uk/the big questions and following the link

:41:08.:41:09.

Or you can tweet using the hashtag bbctbq

:41:10.:41:13.

Tell us what you think about our last Big Question too ?

:41:14.:41:16.

And if you'd like to apply to be in the audience at a future show you

:41:17.:41:21.

We're in Oxford next week, Brighton on April 2nd,

:41:22.:41:27.

Some of you may have heard or seen Thordis Elva and Tom Stranger

:41:28.:41:34.

discussing their book 'South of Forgiveness' on radio

:41:35.:41:37.

During a teenage romance in 1996, Tom, then 18,

:41:38.:41:44.

Now they both want people to understand the shame, blame,

:41:45.:41:55.

silence, and suffering they each went through and the difference

:41:56.:41:57.

forgiveness, decades later, has brought to each of them.

:41:58.:42:00.

Natalie, could you forgive, in that sense, in that way, somebody who has

:42:01.:42:18.

raped you? I think, the first thing is, in your introduction you said

:42:19.:42:21.

about the shame and the pain they both went through, which immediately

:42:22.:42:25.

says the pain of the rapist on the pain of the person who was raped are

:42:26.:42:30.

equal and something we should be caring about equally, when one has

:42:31.:42:33.

inflicted that on another. We have to be aware of that. Incredible

:42:34.:42:40.

thing about their story, the reason it has airtime, is not sadly about

:42:41.:42:45.

Thordis and her choices, for once a man has said I raped somebody and

:42:46.:42:51.

saying up -- standing up and saying that. We shouldn't be applauding

:42:52.:42:58.

that, it is horrific. Do you respect him for that? No, he is a rapist.

:42:59.:43:04.

One of the big issues, women are socialised to be forgiving, be kind

:43:05.:43:08.

and caring and not have anger. One of the things that is liberating for

:43:09.:43:12.

women is anger, rage and fearlessness. What I would say, my

:43:13.:43:19.

personal experience is, I did forgive. You were in an abusive

:43:20.:43:25.

relationship? Yes. Why and how did you forgive? When I talk about rage

:43:26.:43:31.

and anger, women are not given access or permission to rage and

:43:32.:43:35.

anger. We are socialised into having to forgive and socialised into

:43:36.:43:41.

saying, that is what you should do. We see women who forgive and kind

:43:42.:43:44.

loving and a better class of women and that is how this story has

:43:45.:43:52.

panned out between Thordis Elva and Tom Stranger. That is not a model I

:43:53.:43:59.

want to put out. Forgiveness can be liberating, but actually forgiveness

:44:00.:44:03.

can be a tool or weapon. For the majority of women it becomes a

:44:04.:44:07.

weapon to further perpetuate the suffering they have been subjected

:44:08.:44:13.

to. But it can be liberating. In my experience, it has been liberating

:44:14.:44:16.

but I wouldn't want to make it a model for how I live my life. What

:44:17.:44:21.

does it mean in your experience to forgive? Do you communicate that

:44:22.:44:30.

forgiveness to the other person, or are you internalising something, now

:44:31.:44:33.

I will move on and deal with it in a certain way? When I was with my

:44:34.:44:37.

ex-husband I thought forgiveness was accepting what ever he did to me,

:44:38.:44:42.

accepting his behaviour and then it will change if I love him enough.

:44:43.:44:46.

For a lot of women, that is the journey they have been none.

:44:47.:44:51.

Forgiveness for me, understanding forgiveness started by owning how

:44:52.:44:55.

terrible what he did to me was over a period of four years. Saying it is

:44:56.:44:59.

horrendous and it will affect me for the rest of my life and making it

:45:00.:45:05.

visible, the pain of that. Forgiveness is a form of denial.

:45:06.:45:10.

We need to be looking at them or longer term thing. Forgiveness is

:45:11.:45:17.

not nullifying quantities -- the consequences of someone's behaviour

:45:18.:45:21.

towards me. There are consequences. It is not about me communicating

:45:22.:45:26.

that he is forgiven, it is about me not wishing him harm, but putting

:45:27.:45:31.

safeguards in place to prevent him from hurting me. Finn, you are

:45:32.:45:36.

nodding. Do you agree? Could you forgive someone in the same way that

:45:37.:45:42.

Thordis has? The story of Thordis Elva is her own personal, individual

:45:43.:45:47.

journey. She states that in some ways that has helped her to feel

:45:48.:45:53.

more free. I suppose I am also interested in how we can free the

:45:54.:45:58.

whole of society from epidemic levels of male violence against

:45:59.:46:03.

women and children, because an estimated 80,000 rapes every year

:46:04.:46:08.

take place, over 400,000 sexual assaults, two women every week in

:46:09.:46:11.

this country murdered by a violent male partner. Forgiving is about

:46:12.:46:17.

self-help. It is a journey of self help. We should support women to do

:46:18.:46:22.

that and feel in control of themselves and their lives. I do not

:46:23.:46:26.

agree with scrutinising women even more than they are already

:46:27.:46:30.

scrutinised. As well as self-help, we need help from society, we need

:46:31.:46:35.

to heal the problems and fractures in society that cause these

:46:36.:46:37.

horrendous crimes in the first place. Why is there this epidemic as

:46:38.:46:44.

you put it? Because women are unequal. And men are socialised to

:46:45.:46:51.

have entitlement or women's bodies, to be allowed to do that, and that

:46:52.:46:57.

is perpetuated by a wider societal structure, which undermines women's

:46:58.:47:02.

sense of agency. That is what Tom Stranger said. He felt that as a

:47:03.:47:07.

man, it was a victory for him, he had a right over his girlfriend's

:47:08.:47:12.

body because he was dating her. They had been out on a night out, they

:47:13.:47:16.

had been drinking alcohol, and he would not be a proper young man if

:47:17.:47:21.

he did not have sex with her at the end of the night. He said himself he

:47:22.:47:25.

felt pressured, that he did not enjoy it greatly, but he felt that

:47:26.:47:37.

is what he was supposed to do, and it was what he deserved, as if the

:47:38.:47:40.

body of that woman was his birthright. That was his own words.

:47:41.:47:42.

Society allows that to happen. If you look at the other things that

:47:43.:47:46.

are defined as hate crimes, disability, race, misogyny is not a

:47:47.:47:51.

hate crime. On a daily basis, all of the women in this audience will have

:47:52.:47:55.

encountered some form of sexism, whether that is catcalling,

:47:56.:47:59.

something going on in work, a whole range of things. Is that not quite a

:48:00.:48:05.

leap from what we are talking about? THEY ALL SPEAK AT ONCE

:48:06.:48:09.

It is not. Could you forgive a terrorist? I also believe in

:48:10.:48:13.

rehabilitation, giving people chances. I agree with Tom Stranger

:48:14.:48:17.

speaking about what he has done. Can I picked up on that point. Peter,

:48:18.:48:22.

you were chief executive of the prison Fellowship. You visit people

:48:23.:48:26.

in prisons. Could you forgive someone who killed your child? It is

:48:27.:48:30.

a question I have asked myself a lot. I work with people who go into

:48:31.:48:41.

prison who have forgiven people who have killed their children. I think

:48:42.:48:45.

of a couple. They have been on this programme. They are amazing people.

:48:46.:48:49.

We kept a week, they have managed to go on that journey of forgiveness. I

:48:50.:48:54.

think they do it, because when we forgive, we look at the future, and

:48:55.:49:00.

we say, the past is the past, it needs punishing and dealing with, we

:49:01.:49:05.

do not see it did not happen, but we look to the future and say, I do not

:49:06.:49:09.

want to hold the sense of revenge in my heart. Does it not

:49:10.:49:22.

leave the person that you forgive, let them off the hook? It does the

:49:23.:49:26.

opposite. You cannot forgive unless you first admit that something that

:49:27.:49:28.

needs forgiving has happened. You must never minimise or try and take

:49:29.:49:31.

it away, say it did not matter in any way whatsoever. You say, this is

:49:32.:49:34.

horrible, but I will still choose to forgive. It requires a degree of

:49:35.:49:38.

remorse from the individual, as well. Not necessarily. We will come

:49:39.:49:44.

back to you in a minute, Peter. It requires a degree of remorse? In

:49:45.:49:49.

order to make that step towards forgiveness, someone needs to say, I

:49:50.:49:55.

have also done something pretty spectacularly wrong. I will hold my

:49:56.:49:59.

hands up to that. As a criminologist, I come across a lot

:50:00.:50:03.

of offenders and not all of them are willing to do that. I have concerns

:50:04.:50:07.

when you have government saying, we will force offenders to say sorry.

:50:08.:50:13.

That takes away the self recognition. Do you get fake

:50:14.:50:18.

remorse? I think you do. Some people are incredibly good at playing the

:50:19.:50:23.

system. A famous example, an Austrian serial killer who had been

:50:24.:50:30.

convicted of murder and came out. Who was it? He was an Austrian

:50:31.:50:36.

serial killer. He expressed Morrison became a famed penal reform

:50:37.:50:40.

correspondent. When he was doing that and talking about the level of

:50:41.:50:44.

the Morsi showed, he went on to kill more women before taking his own

:50:45.:50:49.

life. He built his reputation in part, at least, by expressing fake

:50:50.:50:53.

remorse. That is one of the problems. It is very difficult to

:50:54.:50:59.

subjectively get the extent with remorse, whether someone believes

:51:00.:51:04.

what they are saying. You have to define terms. Forgiveness can come

:51:05.:51:09.

in different ways. In the Christian faith, you talk about divine

:51:10.:51:13.

forgiveness, someone asking forgiveness from God, and that is

:51:14.:51:17.

freely given in terms of love. What you're talking about is a two-way

:51:18.:51:22.

restorative relationship. That is good. It affects the other person

:51:23.:51:25.

and gives them a chance to move on in their life. You can also forgive

:51:26.:51:32.

without ever talking to somebody. It is not a transaction? No. With a

:51:33.:51:37.

violent relationship, someone who has been hurt badly, that maybe the

:51:38.:51:41.

best thing. Is forgiveness the right for that?

:51:42.:51:44.

THEY ALL SPEAK AT ONCE Yes. That is the thing, a

:51:45.:51:49.

recognition that is for the individual. Forgiveness is to give

:51:50.:51:54.

and receive. I would say reconciliation is what you're

:51:55.:51:59.

talking about, when both parties come together. Forgiveness is about

:52:00.:52:05.

an attitude to that person. Go on. I am a counsellor. I have a

:52:06.:52:08.

wide-ranging age group of clients but I mainly work with children who

:52:09.:52:13.

have been victimised in some way. The key for them to start moving

:52:14.:52:18.

forward is to recognise that the event that happened, and no longer

:52:19.:52:24.

see themselves as a victim. Once they have given up that role, the

:52:25.:52:29.

person who carried out the act is no longer the perpetrator of their

:52:30.:52:34.

status. Maybe after that we can start looking at forgiveness if it

:52:35.:52:38.

is going to help them to move on. APPLAUSE

:52:39.:52:45.

Self-definition. Anyone else? The removal of shame is important. If a

:52:46.:52:50.

victim feels shame or responsibility themselves, that is bad for them. I

:52:51.:52:57.

totally take on board that. There is a process that you have to

:52:58.:53:00.

necessarily go through that recognises that you're not

:53:01.:53:05.

responsible. Whether that requires you to forgive the individual that

:53:06.:53:08.

has perpetrated a crime? What is wrong with saying that

:53:09.:53:12.

someone has been victimised. We need to take the stigma away from lots of

:53:13.:53:17.

crimes and especially sexual violence. If someone can go into

:53:18.:53:21.

work in the morning and say, I was mugged the other week, I had this

:53:22.:53:26.

amount stolen, that is terrible, I hope it goes all right. We would not

:53:27.:53:34.

say, I am not a victim. Friends of mine, they have been debating this,

:53:35.:53:38.

who have been sexually abuse, they do not want to be called victims.

:53:39.:53:43.

They are survivors. Yes, they live to see another day, they are

:53:44.:53:47.

survivors. We also need to acknowledge that they are victims of

:53:48.:53:52.

crime. We need to remove the stigma that surrounds that. The shame that

:53:53.:53:56.

women are meant to feel is part of the burden that they alone have to

:53:57.:54:03.

carry. It takes away from their happiness. What about children of

:54:04.:54:07.

whatever gender who are abuse? I agree. Anthony, we heard from Peter,

:54:08.:54:12.

a man who is inspired by his faith. He was talking about the forgiveness

:54:13.:54:19.

of Jesus. Jesus forgive. Yes, but it is far more complex than we have

:54:20.:54:25.

been saying. The issue is not just about gender. It seems to me that

:54:26.:54:35.

forgiveness is overrated. Most people would quote the words of

:54:36.:54:39.

Jesus on the cross, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they

:54:40.:54:44.

do. That is a great example of unilateral forgiveness, they would

:54:45.:54:49.

argue. It is not an example of forgiveness, it is an example of

:54:50.:54:54.

Jesus claims -- Jesus praying for the good of those who were telling

:54:55.:54:59.

him. He did not pray for anyone. He prayed that in the course of time

:55:00.:55:07.

God would forgive. It is a prayer that lays aside Justice in terms of

:55:08.:55:15.

what God is doing. But divine forgiveness, as with human

:55:16.:55:19.

forgiveness, is always proceeded with repentance, genuine sorrow that

:55:20.:55:23.

is lived out. As has been rightly said, how do we know what genuine

:55:24.:55:29.

repentance is? There is a fantastic book by an American, it is called

:55:30.:55:35.

Faking It, in which the author describes how clever people are in

:55:36.:55:41.

faking repentance. Repentance has to be demonstrated, it has to be

:55:42.:55:45.

appropriate, it has to be modelled over a long period of time. Within

:55:46.:55:51.

that context, there can be a movement towards forgiveness. You

:55:52.:55:55.

mention justice. Too often people do not see justice. If we are talking

:55:56.:55:59.

about women and children and the difficulties they face in taking

:56:00.:56:03.

cases forward, the low numbers we have for rape convictions in this

:56:04.:56:09.

country, Justice holds people back, not just as individuals, but the

:56:10.:56:13.

whole of society is held back by not giving justice to who have been

:56:14.:56:18.

victimised. How would you increase the number of rate convictions in

:56:19.:56:20.

this country? I would improve the police. -- rape convictions. There

:56:21.:56:28.

are problems around the number of people who report rape. There has

:56:29.:56:32.

been problems with the police designating rapes as no crime. The

:56:33.:56:38.

CPS does not take cases forward based on stereotypical assumptions

:56:39.:56:42.

about women's sexuality. What was she wearing, had she been drinking?

:56:43.:56:47.

We are still dealing with these stereotypes. You have been listening

:56:48.:56:53.

with great interest. What do you think? I think there is an issue

:56:54.:57:01.

right now around moral panic, all around rape. Do you understand the

:57:02.:57:05.

definition of that? Yes, and I am really sorry. How do you come up

:57:06.:57:12.

against that? What do you mean by moral panic? I think there is a

:57:13.:57:17.

tendency now to suddenly, I do not disagree that rape is a horrible

:57:18.:57:22.

thing, but there is a tendency to make the barriers around what

:57:23.:57:25.

constitutes harassment fuzzy. We build up this idea that there is a

:57:26.:57:30.

massive epidemic of male violence, but what has been defined as male

:57:31.:57:35.

violence is a little funny. That is because there is an epidemic of male

:57:36.:57:39.

violence. THEY ALL SPEAK AT ONCE

:57:40.:57:49.

Excuse me, everybody. Ashley. That is why I was afraid to

:57:50.:57:54.

say anything. When I was a teenager, walking down the street in the days

:57:55.:57:58.

of Britney Spears, with the tummy tuck, ID cards would go by and

:57:59.:58:02.

whistle. One of my friends turned around and said, thank you. I said,

:58:03.:58:09.

you're not supposed to like that. There is a little bit of bad faith

:58:10.:58:12.

around these things. We are supposed to be really offended by male

:58:13.:58:17.

attention, but actually, some women in male attention. You have changed

:58:18.:58:22.

what you're talking about. Ladies and gentlemen, what I need to do, I

:58:23.:58:27.

need to try and get in touch with the BBC and get an extension on this

:58:28.:58:32.

debate. We have just entered some fascinating territory but we are out

:58:33.:58:36.

of time. Thank you very much indeed for your contributions this morning.

:58:37.:58:40.

As always, the debates will continue online and on Twitter.

:58:41.:58:42.

Next week we're in Oxford, so do join us then.

:58:43.:58:45.

But for now, it's goodbye from Cardiff and have a great Sunday.

:58:46.:58:49.

Nicky Campbell presents live debate from Michaelston Activity Centre in Cardiff. He asks: Are Europe's powerless taking control?; Does a nation's happiness matter?; Does forgiving set you free?