26/01/2012 Daily Politics


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Welcome to the Daily Politics. 60 minutes of public service


broadcasting at its finest. That is what it says here! The Deputy Prime


Minister bids to get low earners out of paying tax more quickly.


Will he get his way with the Treasury?


They have gone to the Swiss Alps to get a better view of the euro-zone


crisis, but do the politicians and businessmen gathering in Davos like


what they are seeing that? The Lords inflict a 6th defeat on


the government on welfare reform. We must now stand together and


fight for the things in which we all believe. They are more


important than any of us individually.


And how accents can help or hinder All that in 60 minutes. A veritable


festival of politics here on BBC2. With us for the duration, a


familiar face, Joan Bakewell, now a Labour peer in the Lords. Welcome


back. First, the government's packs plant


a bomb be laid out by the Chancellor. So you stick -- sit


down with a stiff drink me prepare yourself for the bad news, so


imagine a surprise when you turn on your telly to hear the Deputy Prime


Minister talking about speeding up the tax increase threshold. I want


the commission to go further and faster in delivering the full


�10,000, because bluntly, the pressure on family finances is


reaching boiling point. Compared to those at the top, these families


have seen their earnings in decline for a decade. That has got worse


since 2008, with lower real wages and fewer hours at work. I am


joined now by our political correspondent. It is unusual to


hear tax plans being announced so close to the Budget. Presumably he


had clearance, and it sounds as if it is going to happen? He told me


this morning that he spoke to George Osborne and the Prime


Minister about it, I don't think they sat down and signed off on the


proposals, but clearly they knew what was coming. It is very unusual.


It is just six weeks before the Budget. But this is a very


important issue for Nick Clegg, there is an element of Economics


here, it is being proposed as a way of kick-starting part of the


economy, by getting more money into the pockets of low earners, because


people believe they will spend more quickly, but what is more


significant is this is about distinction - Liberal Democrats


decoupling, if you will. It is an idea which is very important in


terms of fairness. So this is a Lib Dem priority, not necessarily


government policy, although I know they were committed to doing it by


2015. Have they costed it? It sounds like a stimulus to me.


a coalition policy, it says in black and white, and their first


priority when it comes to tax is increasing the personal tax


threshold. What Nick Clegg wants today is for it to go further and


to go faster. He wants it to happen before that commitment of 2015 in


Parliament. I think the rout will be about Howard will be funded, and


the pressure is on Nick Clegg to come forward with some specific


proposals he thinks George Osborne can accept. He talked about tax


loopholes. He talked about stamp duty, pension relief, pension


allowance as well, and then mentioned tax, which is least


palatable for the Chancellor. He did also mention other ways of


tinkering around to get this figure of about 9 billion, which is the


cost, which seemed a far more palatable to the Chancellor if he


were to agree with this. Thank you. Let's look at the substance of the


proposal. If you have got 9 billion in spare cash to spend, is taking


low earners out of tax the best way of helping the working poor?


must -- he must be the last person to notice that the poor are hurting


the most from the government policy. It is a policy that hasn't yielded


croaked. One of the weight of yielding growth is to get people


spending money. There should be a revision of the 80, that is what


you need, people who need to spend can you need to give them the money,


it is obvious daughter of --. Was so you have to get done spending?


People are her to get all sorts of ways, low-paid families, -- hurting.


There are schemes that are being squeezed and all sorts of benefits


systems that are squeezing poor families. He is quite right, they


need help. But if the aim is to help poor families, if you're not


in a job at all and you are poor, then this doesn't help you, because


you are not paying tax. And note most of the 9 billion will go to


middle income, that may be good or bad come but it is not targeted at


the ball. It will include the lower earners, it doesn't take Marks --


take much, and that is where the expansion needs to happen in the


economy. Most of that 9 billion will not go to the poor. It won't,


but it will go to the people feeling the squeeze, not just be


destitute are feeling the squeeze debate is the squeezed middle.


would be different. What is the lower squeeze? People who were on


20,000 a year. They would benefit from this. That may be the plan,


actually. Given it under the guise of helping the very poor. Later we


will discuss whether taxpayers should be told more about where


their money is going. In case you thought the Pensthorpe Nature


Reserve as it -- the eurozone crisis had gone away, it hasn't.


Leaders have gone to the World Economic Forum. The crisis is still


top of the agenda. Earlier this week the IMF said that the global


economy was now deeply into the danger zone as a result of risks


from the euro-zone. So how are our leaders going to get their act


together? Are they just going to ski, eat and drink? I am not sure


about the former! The International Monetary Fund forecasts that the


euro area will slip into recession this year. Estimates that GDP in


the euro-zone will shrink by 0.5%. The IMF also wants a radical shift


in policy to save the era. It is urging leaders to consider a


doubling or tripling of the bail- out fund, and fought EU


institutions and governments to share the burden of debt relief for


Greece. This is opposed by Angela Merkel, who has raised fresh doubts


about the ability to save Greece from a default, calling the country


a special case. Talks are resuming between the Greek government and


the banks over a write-down of its debt pile. Banks have said they are


willing to take a 50% cut, but Greece is looking for more. Angela


Merkel thinks it will be solved by matching austerity to the ways


Europe is Govan, guaranteeing close fiscal union, but legendary


investor George Soros has sounded a warning. The austerity Jenny wants


to impose will push Europe into a deflationary debt spiral. --


Germany wants to impose. David Cameron says Europe needs to slash


red tape in order to promote growth. Our single-market remains


incomplete, and there are still a colossal 4700 professions across


the European Union to which access is regulated by government. And


that is not all. In spite of the economic challenge, in spite of the


unemployment challenge, we are still doing things through the EU


to make life even harder. In the name of social protection, the EU


has promoted Mehmet -- measures that impose burdens on businesses


and can destroy each jobs. The pregnant workers' directive, the


working time directive, the list goes on. That was the Prime


Minister speaking at Davos and now I go. We are joined now by the


Conservative MP John Redwood and from Brussels, Liberal Democrat MEP


Sharon Bowles. She has just been reappointed, some said she wouldn't


be because she is British, but it is proud for the nation that she


has been reappointed. She is chairman of the Economic and


Monetary Affairs Committee. Is it still in Britain's interest to


support the efforts of Germany and France to save the euro-zone as


currently constituted? I think it is in British interests to do as


much as we can to assist in rescuing, and to participate as


much as we can in the plans, and to contribute our expertise to make is


not just about money. It is also about the steps to take. The


problem isn't going to go away, it keeps on getting more serious, and


we are affected by it. So the more we are in the room in discussions,


the better that is for the UK. understand that is your line, but I


am asking whether it is right that British policy should be to support


keeping the euro-zone as currently constituted, with its 17 members,


intact. Is that the proper course of British policy? I am not sure


that is going to help anybody if the UK had a policy that says, then


it should be a fragmentation of the euro-zone. I think hanging together


is probably an important thing to do. So your answer is yes? I think


yes, the issue of whether or not we should face up to the size of the


Greek debt and the fact it is going to be difficult to get it so that


by 2020 it is down to 120%, which is what lies behind the haircut of


the Bond holders and so on, I think to have some straight talking about


the possibilities and impossibilities... I am going to


come on to Greece as a specific case, I it and just looking at the


eurozone as a whole at the moment. Is the policy not to be ticket


eurozone intact, because if it does begin to split up or free at the


edges, it will throw Europe into the deep recession which will drag


us down? I don't agree with that at all. The only way forward for the


euro-zone is to be realistic and to lose two or three countries and try


and stabilised the rest. I think in public, at the British government


shouldn't say anything at all, they shouldn't say anything that could


be construed as damaging or difficult, so the safest thing is


to say nothing. In private, they should be giving straight, honest


advice, and the honest financial and economic advice you have to


give is that the scheme is now doing enormous destruction to jobs


and the social fabric and the economic life of several states


within the euro-zone, the sooner they are allowed out, the better,


we can get on with adjusting and we can start to rescue the wider


European economy. Our policy should be to shut up? Publicly. That is


what Nicolas Sarkozy told us to do, I'm glad you're align itself with


the outgoing French President! are deliberately missed a string


what I said. I was saying that we should say anything in public that


could be construed as unhelpful, but in private, we should not shut


up, we are a full member of the wider EU. We should say this is not


working, there is now Meechan the distraught -- mutually assured


austerity, a circle which has been created, and it needs to be broken.


If they allowed Greece and Portugal out, it would start be process of


recovery. Sharon Bowles, is it inevitable that Greece will


default? Angela Merkel hinted at that? I think unless we pull


something out of the bag now, it is looking that way. There are few


other things we can try first, for example getting the ECB to


participate in their hair cut on the bonds, because it bought the


bonds at less than full value, so the notional profit it has got and


it could be put into the pot. might be illegal under the


Maastricht treaty. They're not meant to be bailing out European


governments. The profit element, there is 30% to spare, I am not


sure that would make it illegal. And there are possibilities, the


question is again with it is big enough to get down to something


that is sustainable. We have got it a little bit in the UK as well,


because of all the austerity that is around, it does feed off one


another in adjacent countries. It depresses growth, and we cannot


actually get out of the problems we Let me bring John Redwood back in.


Should Britain be giving more money to the IMF, which looks like it


will be coming for a cash call to its members, a lot of which it


wants to use to help the EC and the euro this -- ECB and the European


Union burlap eurozone? He should make this has the option available


for as normal purposes. -- it should make this subscription. You


can't have appropriate monetary action, so we should say to the IMF,


do not waste your money on this, and I agree with good Osborne when


he says we should not be bailing out currencies. -- George Osborne.


Greece is to the euro area as California is to America. Should we


pony up our share if it comes knocking on our door?


I think I half agree with what is being said. We should be looking at


trying to assist countries and we should be trying to make sure we do


contribute to the IMF for its programmes and, without earmarking.


I don't think that is the idea, and you should not contribute to


something earmark. Everybody has to get realistic about what is


possible and impossible. And how far will Germany go, we cannot


carry on as we are at the moment. If we drip-feed money in it becomes


many wasted. Should a money be going in or shouldn't it be a pity


that the dock if the Germans will not dig into their deeper pockets,


why should we? We have to look at how it is done,


whether it is the most effective way and gives us something big


enough to effect the proper rescue. If it is another bit of drip-


feeding, I think we have a right to to voice if we feel we are cynical


about it. That is where it is important we are in the room.


If even Sharon Bowles and Angola Meckel, probably the two most


powerful woman in Europe, -- Angela Merkel, are saying Greece could


default, it seems that will happen. I agree, it seems it will. I agree


with John Redwood. We should just stay silent on the international


picture. I don't think David Cameron is highly regarded in


Europe. After his rather dramatic walkout which played well with his


backbenchers, which went down very badly in Europe, also he belongs to


a strange group within Europe that is far right of the central group


so he doesn't hold any authority there.


At least he is there this year, Nicolas Sarkozy might not be.


have considerable influence and authority if we wish to use it. We


must use it for sensible economic policies. Europe is locked into a


dreadful deflation. The crisis has only been going on


for three years. I'm sure we will be back.


Last night the House of Lords inflicted another defeat on the


Government's welfare reforms. This time there was a proposal to charge


estranged parents �100 to use the services of the Child Support


Agency to settled out maintenance disputes. The government was


defeated by 270, to 278, the biggest rebellion by far. Among the


rebels with 34 Conservative Peers. Lord Lawson, thank you for joining


us. Why did you rebel? This was an issue on a bill which


as a whole I strongly support, and I strongly support the benefit cat


which the great majority of the British people do, but this was a


particular provision where people had -- where the government had


clearly got it wrong. James McKay, a man of great calibre, who work


worked with closely in government, he was Lord Chancellor and there


was Chancellor of the Exchequer, he sought to put it right and I


supported him as a number of others did.


What about the argument the Lords is now, particularly on welfare


reforms, overstepping his role. As you said yourself there is huge


public support for the welfare bill and the welfare reforms. Do you


really have a right to vote down a part of key government proposals


even if you said it is wrong, is this what the Lords should be


doing? Absolutely. We have a duty as a


revising chamber and that is what we are doing. On the welfare cap,


the benefit cap, there was one defeat for the government, which I


supported the government and the government are absolutely right,


crazy Lib Dem rebellion. What about the aspects that have


been voted down, is there a risk that the Government's welfare bill


is actually doing some damage to the modernising image, there will


be part of the population that you them as too cruel?


I don't think we wanted about image and all that sort of thing. What is


important is to get the policy right, get the legislation right,


avoid it to cut back on a necessary public expenditure, at a time of


great economic difficulty, and large does it -- budget deficit,


and have a welfare scheme which encourages people to work, but


helps those who for whatever reason cannot work to get the policy right.


That is what is important. I think all this Blairite obsession of


image is rather sickening. What about the talk of rebellious


behaviour hastening the time of the House of Lords? There is no need


for a great reform of the House of Lords, unless you address the


question of the power to the House of Lords. At the moment the powers


are minimal. It is doing its best and you saw last night, did a very


good job in checking the government where it had got something wrong.


There is a strong case for increasing the powers of the second


chamber, as in the United States, more like two houses which have


roughly equal powers. If you are going to have that you both have to


be democratically elected, no doubt about that. If that is not on offer


there will be no increase whatever in the minimal powers of the House


of Lords. All you can do is get people of calibre, people who have


the Independent -- independence that comes from life Kenya and let


them do their best. A six defeats this year and still don't eerie,


not going well for the government in the second chamber. Could this


be heavier strengthen the Government's intention to put flesh


through reform -- behaviour. For the House of Lords the


coalition has threatened to be guilty of sweeping away appointed


Piers and having hundreds of them thrown out. For as long as there


has been House of Lords there has been those keen to be supported.


For Nick Clegg it is to be polished for a modern democratic age.


Prime Minister I -- and I are clear, we won the reforms to the upper


chamber to take place in 2015. But while we know what we want to


achieve, we are open-minded about how we get there. We propose an


upper House made up of 300 members. Each eligible for a single term of


three parliaments. One of the problems that has always dogged


Lords reform is that it is like those domestic jobs you have that


you might like to do, perhaps ought to do, but is this the time, there


are more pressing things to be getting on with? One thing that


might dog this specific attempt to reform the Lords is there is now


public appetite for accountability, and for politicians that haven't


just spent a great power lives doing this, but have done a real


job before and -- spent their entire lives. That is the kind of


peer that might be got rid of in an elected House. You are being fooled


by the publicity some might like to persuade we are all independent,


most of us are retired has been politicians, we do the work there.


Of course there are some people with expertise that come in and


vote on issues it they are interested in that they are not


their most of the town. The lofty ideal is elections give


even the most ordinary people a voice. Critics say party politics


sucks Independent out of the system. There will be more independent of


party them there is now, but we will have a responsibility to the


public to listen to what they are saying. He could always get that if


you have a strong party whip in the Commons -- you don't always get


that. Controversial Bills are driven through without the voice of


the public being heard. Are those against elections against reform?


There is no way to sit, it is as bad as that, like Ryanair. We don't


need more than about 600. There ought to be a method of retirement,


with dignity, they should also be a way in which the laws can expel a


member. All of those reforms of fine, just not elections.


Definitely not. The Baroness will be policed, privately many things


these reforms will fail. -- many think. The way it has been behaving


recently, the Govan will not want some great big bills next year the


Lords can forever -- the government. We are joined by the constitutional


affairs minister Mark Harper. Are there voting for Christmas coming


soon? The real issue and we have seen this in the debates this year,


it does batter who makes the rules in this country and in the 21st


century laws should be made by people who are elected. Most


politicians in the House of Lords at the moment our party


representatives, there are crossbenchers, the most a party


representatives. The most common for my job is Member of Parliament.


What about all the crossbenchers, the numbers of people who have had


other lives and our expert in their areas? That is why that is a good


argument put in our proposals we proposed an 80% elected House of


Lords proposing to keep 20% crossbenchers so you can have that


range of people who did come with a party political point.


When will it happen, when will you bring this forward? We want to do


it, the date is to make sure we get the first elections in 2015. When


is the bill coming forward? As soon as we can. We have published a


draft bill which is being scrutinised by a joint committee.


We want to listen to what they have got to say, they are doing a


serious job, then we will look at what they have to say and bring


forward our proposals in due course. How helpful are these defeats?


House of Lords clearly is involved in making the law. The message for


the public is if you take the view these are important issues and they


matter to people and clearly the big debate we have seen on the cap


on benefits shows it really matters to people, everyday people in their


everyday lives, those decisions should be taken by people elected,


not appointed. We shouldn't be making these decisions. The law


doesn't have a lot of power -- the Lords. It is our job to improve the


rather ramshackle Laws sent away from the Commons, made too quickly


and thoughtlessly with unintended consequences. We can put that right


and we can advise the Commons this would improve the bill and they


very often agree. Did you do it with half the numbers? I think it


is cutting it to find. It should be reformed, there are about 800


members. 500 turn up regularly and take it seriously. 500 is good, and


if everyone does find a seat, and they carry the most amazing range


of expertise. They are not locked into short-term outlook, they can


take a long-term view of how it will work. It is simply advising


the Commons. You can push through this legislation, you said you are


going to, so what is the problem? The Commons can get its own way and


we are not proposing to change that, but the fact is, the Lords can


block legislation if it wants to and can delay it. It can by being


able to lay it force decisions on the Commons. This isn't just an


advisory chamber, they don't just turn the offer an opinion, and say


take-it-or-leave-it. You can get into some real arguments. This is


about the law of our land, be made by people elected by the public.


You would be happy if they were elected them they could be more


forceful in terms of their disagreements. They would be more


legitimate. If you ask the public, most people think people who make


laws should be elected. Only 6% the public think it should stay as it


is. If you have to Eddie Chambers, which one pulls rank? If you have


elected Lords they will be far more assertive and wish to impose their


will on the Commons and that will be a really important...


You will have to bodies doing similar things, there will not be -


- they will not be different -- easy to differentiate. We wanted


you what is good about the Lords, a long, single, non-renewable terms.


Different electoral system, and they will be elected entrenches,


not at one go. The Parliament Act will ultimately mean done 2% elated


House of Commons will get its own way that people in the Lords will


be more legitimate. Do people care enough about this?


The real issue is, do they care about what the Lords decide? This


week was a good example, making decisions about important issues


like the benefits cap which the government -- the population care


about. Do the people that make the decisions, are they elected and


listen to the public? While we have been debating these


issues it has been first Minister's Questions in Edinburgh. The


Holyrood parliament. We will be looking at that in a moment. We


will be looking at political You're watching the Daily Politics.


We are joined by viewers in Scotland and have been watching


First Minister's questions from Hollywood. Alex Salmond has been


uttering questions on the future of prosperity or otherwise of an


independent Scotland. -- answering questions. The reality is that


people of this country want confidence in their pensions, their


mortgages and their future. Scotland would emerge as an


independent country with the 6th highest wealth per head in the


Organisation of economic co- operation and Development. That in


itself is not the argument for independence. The argument for


Independent is self-determination. But given we would be the 6th most


prosperous country in the developed world, most people in Scotland will


have some degree of confidence in Scotland's ability not just to


survive, but prosper as a socially just, economically progressive


society. We can now talk to Ascot and political editor. -- out


Scotland political editor. It seems that despite the fact meeting still


have to go ahead with Westminster politicians, Alex Salmond has gone


ahead and published his preferred question anyway, is that a tactic?


He is trying to steer matters in his way. The way I think this is


going to go is that Alex Salmond is adamant about the timing, he once


the referendum in the autumn of 2014. I think he wants -- will get


his way. The only way the British government can print that is to


hold a referendum of their own, and they don't want to do that. I think


Alex Salmond get his weight on autumn 2014 but the UK government


get their way on a single question. Alex Salmond wants that single


question on independence, the wording will be a straightforward


question. He wants the idea of a back-up question, the UK government


says no to that. The UK government hold the strings to a large extent,


and Alex Salmond except that if he wants a referendum on independence,


he has to get back to trade off. Alex Salmond will get his date, the


UK government get their questions. So it sounds like everybody is


happy? There is a lot of talking to go! The concept of happiness in


Scottish politics, they don't really go together! Quite right!


They don't often go together! So when other talks scheduled with


the Prime Minister? They are having discussions tomorrow, but the


secretary of state unfortunately has chickenpox will stop my


sympathy to him, I hope he gets better, but it has been deferred to


next week. After those preliminary discussions, we will then have


discussions between Alex Salmond and the Prime Minister. Thank you.


We will be coming back a lot, don't go away! A lot more to come there!


If you're young and looking for work, think you will know it is


almost as hard to get work experience as to get an actual job.


The demand is so high up to companies are charging people for


work experience. That striker you pay for it! Youngsters often paying


more than �100 a day, so that is going to help you if you come from


an ordinary background, isn't it! That is going to help social


mobility a lot. With even MPs using free labour dressed up as work


experience, our Sunday politics West reporter has been


investigating. Students know how important it is


to get work experience. Without it, you have basically little or no


chance of getting a job. So how far would they go? Would you pay to get


work experience? Not sure about that! Personally, no, I don't pick


it is really worth it, doing something they want you to do.


it was needed to get into the job, then yes. Because that is the only


way to get into it. This Somerset company takes a fee for putting


people in touch with small businesses. They will provide


experience and training so long as you pay for it. A we're providing


people with an opportunity to put information on their CV. If you


want to get work experience for a large company or a bank, it is


reasonable that these multinationals have a


responsibility and will provide this training for free. If you look


at smaller companies, where you have one or two people in the


business, typically they don't provide training because they don't


have the money or resources. does run other businesses. If you


want experience as a copywriter with him committee will have to pay.


You think you're worth that person paying that much a day? I don't


really think �130 is frankly enough for somebody to get the kind of


experience they can get here, to be honest. Graham is a photographer in


Gloucestershire. You can get a day with him for �95. What they will


get is my experience of 35 years in this industry, where I can guide


them and showed them the aspects of the industry that might be relevant.


Also, they will put more value on it if they have invested some of


the money into that. It is not the sort of thing I'm doing to make


money out of, because I would normally charge a lot more than


that for a day. But critics say paying for work experience means it


is not open to everyone. De Deputy Prime Minister himself says


internships call-back social mobility, even though Westminster


is awash with them. All political parties have been running offices


on the efforts of underpaid or none paid people for far too long.


MP has gone further. Paying out of her own pocket to help youngsters


get on the jobs ladder. I do have a large number of people, not in


terms, they are work experience. I have had over 40 young people


through my office doing work experience in the last year. I pay


for their lunches and travel out of my personal money, not the


taxpayers' money, not party money, it is my own pocket. I think it is


a fantastic opportunity for young people to actually see what it is


like. For the student, then, some tough decisions ahead, not least


how much they would pay for work experience.


We are joined by the Lib Dem and Pete Annette Brooke, and the


director of the Institute of economic Affairs. You pay your


intones? I do, I have an in first - - advertisement, I should say that


money is coming out of the public purse, because it comes out of my


staff budget. You charge it as part of your expenses? Per person


becomes a salaried person within the House of Commons. But those who


are going to be been turns working in your constituency, did they get


paid? A not necessarily come up we have a mix of people. If we have a


full-blown in turn, that is always within a training programme, so we


make sure there is a support package around. Do they get the


minimum wage? We have to make sure we cover expenses a folly. The if


you are from a poor background, you cannot afford to take that.


have to live. Expenses alone, you are already narrowing down the


social final of people who can do this? I am individual try to do the


best I can come up because I passionately believe in giving the


opportunity to young people, and all young people, at that. So I do


my best within the context that I can, and for Westminster, I think


since the end of 2008, I have been advertising, only at minimum wage,


I wish there could be more, but I do think that gives real


opportunity for young people to give a bit of a mix. But Nick Clegg,


who has made a big deal of this, because of the potential


implications for social mobility, he benefited hugely, because he's


father gave him a placement in a finish back -- in a Finnish bank.


The Lib Dems are still advertising for internas, but with only travel


expenses. We have a code of practice, and everybody is being


encouraged to do what they can. All power to his elbow, he has


recognised he had advantages. I can only talk for myself. But you have


made this an issue, and you were doing the best you can. Have you


made representations to your party to stop being hypocritical, and


practise what Nick Clegg preaches in his speeches? My party knows my


views are very well! I have a long background of supporting young


people, particularly in business as well. I realised today that I have


supported Young Enterprise Inns called for over 40 years. We need


to move forward, and Nick Clegg has done the right thing. So why are


you only advertising for them getting travel expenses only? Your


party put you up today as a spokesperson for your party.


need to look at the context within all particles -- parties. We are


not auctioning places within my party, that I'm sure of. Work


experience and internships, when they first started, they were seen


as a way of getting people into the work environment, getting a sense


of what they want to do. They have actually turned out to be a gift


for the privilege, haven't they? Well-connected folk get their kids


in, and they pay for them because they can afford to, and did you


have just come out of a decent comprehensive in Scunthorpe, you


have no chance of getting on to this gravy-train -- if you have a.


I basically agree with you, if you're well connected and have


affluent parents, when you leave school, you are going to be in a


better position than if you haven't and you have just left a


comprehensive school in Scunthorpe. I think that while we don't want to


see nepotism to that degree, I think Nick Clegg is right, we have


got to be a bit careful before we are against networking. At the


Institute of economic Affairs, we get dozens of youngsters saying,


can I come in for a few weeks over the summer? We have to turn down


most of them the space reasons. It would wait with me if somebody said,


this chap is really good, I think it is reasonable to take -- bear in


mind those things. We have to have a self- denying ordinance in that


regard. But do you? You cannot allow them away in? We pick on


quality. You can go to our website, open advertisements. Do you pay?


You have the same problem. We have a real problem with the minimum


wage, which I think is also helping affluent people. Why is that?


Because it is not worth me paying �6.80 an hour, we would rather not


have an there than pay than that amount, but that means we have to


pay than 0. If you have affluent parents, you can probably afford


that. You are living at home in Surrey. We cannot pay them at three


or �4 an hour. I think one should make every effort to pay. I admit


there is a bias with regard to my Westminster position, because the


person has to be able to live in London. I don't know why you were


mentioning comprehensives, I'm very proud of my daughters went to the


local comprehensive, but it is particularly with the schools that


we need to start this business, we need business opportunities locally


for those that can't travel, and full engagement across the board


with education and business, something I have always tried to


make an important thing. We are looking at the structural problem


of youth unemployment and we have got to find those opportunities, I


think we should all be pulling together to do the best we can.


Hazel Blears has come up with this scheme whereby she has raised a lot


of money through her own efforts, and through the help of some people,


they have brought in a lot of people who were not in turns, they


are working for MPs, they are on a decent wage, the living wage, which


is more than the minimum wage, and getting some expenses, and they


help of accommodation. They have brought in people from all sorts of


backgrounds that you wouldn't expect to be doing these jobs.


Isn't that the way to go? I think it is one of many ways to go. Very


laudable, and I praised the scheme greatly. We are trying to make as


wide access as possible, and you try all routes. Are you ashamed to


the dutiful grandson work experience? I paid my grandson!


he had to be your grandson! I paid him, and if there are so many


shades of opinion, and variables in this matter, it opens up all sorts


of injustices, and opportunities. There is the opportunity for


someone who is well connected by family, when I needed some help,


and a paid him more than the minimum wage, but on the other hand,


why should companies not pay their employees? If they are using people


as employees, they should pay them. If they can't afford to pay them,


shouldn't be employing them. they're not really employees if


they are coming in as work experience at? It is called low


level secretarial help, it can be very happy for. -- helpful. I can


see it looks like exploitation, but here, we put on a huge range of


events for our students, with professors the road leading


academics, we send them away... That is an apprenticeship. Should


be charged for that? Or would it be There is the whole scale of


apprenticeships, a young people deserve opportunities, they don't


deserve to buy into it because they have got rich parents.


We will be fit there. We have come a little while from


the days when the Tories at their fund-raising events optioned work


experience. Thank you. How would you feel about paying


your tax if you have every hardened pad well spent? Interesting. The MP,


Ben Gummer, thinks we are being set -- kept in the dark and he is


talking about getting an itemised and a statement.


What I propose is very simple. The government should tell us how much


we pay tax and where it goes. He should do so as close as possible


to the Chancellor's Budget statement and to the end of the tax


year, and her Majesty's Customs and revenue should provide to each


person who pays income tax and national insurance statement to


that in fact -- to that effect. We would not think about paying a bill


in a supermarket or setting up a mobile phone to erect them that if


we did receive an itemised receipt in change -- mobile phone direct


debit. We get nothing, a notable account of how much we have paid,


no detail whatsoever of where it has gone. I would say, there are


far more important issues we should be changing about the way


expenditure in this country is made, is revealed to the taxpayers. Not


least because in this House we do an extremely bad job of analysing


We are joined by Ben Gummer he we saw in that clip introducing his


bill and Ben page. Ben Gummer, Festival, it would be fascinating


to have an itemised breakdown but wouldn't it have the consequence


nobody would want to pay it when they saw where it all went?


never have done samples they are amazed by some of the things, the


differences in where the money goes. Someone on average earnings,


�26,000 per year, �2,100 goes to pensions and benefits, �1,000 to


the NHS, and then roads and railways get about �70 each. That


kind of massive differential people don't recognise if they come out of


it straight away without actually seeing the tax statement. What


people get best upset about? Is it the actual areas or the amounts?


Both. A lot of the things that we pick up on the doorstep as Members


of Parliament that all the money is going to Africa and Europe, Trident,


whatever somebody's bed there is, it turned out to be miniscule


amounts of money compared with the big guns by pensions, aged hundred


pounds and rising. The government will not go for that, seeing


itemise bills so people can figure out who is getting what? President


Obama has done it in the White House you can go online and get a


receipt. Number 10 said they were very supportive and the Chancellor


was behind it to a good happen quickly.


What public opinion be behind it? They would, they like the idea of


transparency. People always say if you're looking at their tax bill


and you can look at local authority council tax, they absolutely want


to know, it is one of the things they are most interested in, where


does it go? As Ben has rarely illustrated people are deluded


about how much goes into different areas.


We do get that breakdown from local councils and a good read it


carefully enough, actually, to see. -- and they did read it. Would


people take enough notice? everybody would look at it but a


lot more people would. One difference is in a country I leave


relied on centralised taxation you cancel tax isn't that much of your


income. This is a large part of your income and they would be very


interested. Maybe you could tick the box, would you be allowed to


move it around? Would there be any option? What


would you like to see? A I would like to withdraw my contribution to


Trident, he however small it might be, not keen on war, I would like


money back, happy about roads and the NHS and education. Steamy as


much as you like on those issues. What would follow from the popular


engagement would be you can actually specify and you can ask to


opt out of certain payments and begin to shape how your money is


spent, a dead pig is possible but am sure people long to do that once


Basie -- I do not think is possible. People to make decisions, and half


the population just say it this is ultimately what I choose


politicians to do for may. If you force people to make really tough


choices, the sort of policies Cabinet have to make -- the sort of


choices Cabinet have to make, half were not to it. -- will not do it.


Even when asked to bridges spending and they will, people will put it


up on things they care about like young people. It would be


interesting for the government did you see where people in terms of


numbers would like to spend more money, perhaps, as well as less


money or no money. We are already having discussion. It actually


generate democratic discussion. Politics are talking -- but you


just talking about Chileans, that his understanding -- people talking


about trillions, that is out side the understanding of many. On the


issues the House of Lords are looking out, billions of pounds,


taxpayers can make a real understanding of what it DLA means.


Will result in people paying -- paying less tax? One anxiety, the


high proportion of pensions bulkiness print-out, is that they


might create a backlash against the old. I take people to say let's cut


the pensions, they are old. It is an expanding part of that


population, you think it would be understandable. Younger people


might feel too much of my money is going to these old people, they


don't deserve it. They don't vote. It depends how you feel about young


people. The sixteen-year-old, you have got to regenerate an interest


in the politics. How quickly do you think it might come in? He said it


could be adopted, you sounded optimistic? It is very easy to do.


Very cheap. Cheaper than what has good does it every week with its


Clubcard members. Incredibly easy to do this, personal statement, the


technology is there. Their sponsor the have Repsol it is free, he


could happen within months. -- let's sponsored the envelope so it


is free. You have got it all worked out.


Have you enjoyed listening to the velvety tones of our guests, Joan


Bakewell? It has been reported she is too posh for some programmes. I


thought she would definitely be to push for this lot here. She has


been told her accent means she will not get work in the BBC. I don't


believe that for a moment. Anyway, does it matter how you speak these


days? As a political commentator or politician? Here is our report on


political pipes. In this game voice is everything,


but some politicians have had a few vocal difficulties. Tony Blair knew


what Joan Bakewell has been talking about, he famously dropped his


It is it is a wonderful pleasure to be back here with you will.


Research from Canada shows voters like their leaders to have deep


voices. Alison Margaret Thatcher learned from her speech coach,


compare and contrast these clips from the beginning and end -- a


lesson. We must now stand together and fight for the things in which


we all believe, they are more important than any of us


individually. We wanted the European Parliament to be the


democratic body of the community. The commission to be the executive,


and the Council of Ministers to be All were no amount of voice


coaching could help. -- could help one of her successors. Do not


underestimate the determination of a quiet man. Critics of the Labour


leader Ed Miliband say it is not volume that is a problem for him,


but the fact he sounds quite nasal. He has eased -- even had surgery on


his nose. He claims that was for breathing problems. I had a


deviated septum and it needed repositioning, typical Labour


leader, as soon as he is elected As they don't say, all politics is


local. We are joined by the first coach,


Barbara Berkery, who worked on the film, The King's Speech. -- a voice


coach. I didn't work on that film, but are normally work with Geoffrey


Rush, I worked on Shakespeare in Love. We would eschew the research,


we have got too many, anyway. Politicians who have changed their


accents most. Margaret Thatcher. She had elocution lessons at school.


She demanded as herself. Probably to get rid of the Midlands accent,


Grantham accent. Then it was thought to become too posh, and she


had voice lessons to change back. The thing about her, within the


time period she was, she would have had a normal at some when she came


from then everybody tries to lose their accents as they climbed up


the greasy pole. Everybody. You did that, didn't you? My mother wanted


me to get on the world and she semi- to elocution lessons.


were in Stockport. -- sent me. Stockport, south Lancashire.


Certainly not posh. Why are people who have elocution lessons like


Joan Bakewell or as Sue Lawley or that Arctic critic we had on. --


art critic. How do the end up sounding more posh than posh


people? Because they are learning something and it is not becoming


part of their being. When I work with actors we spend a lot of time


each -- learning each sound individually, where you plated,


where your tongue does so it becomes part of you. When it


becomes on top of you, painted on, it sounds unnatural because it has


not become an integrated part of you.


Do politicians consciously still change their accents? There is such


a variety now on broadcasting does it matter as much? I think it does.


Add 1 point it was all regional accents which is very popular, --


at one point. It is all fashion, it goes on all the time. We had Gordon


Brown when he became Prime Minister, he tried to lose a lot of his


Scottish accent. Absolutely remarkable difference. I never


noticed that. You have never tried to lose yours? No. The Scottish and


Welsh a privileged as it is an a loud accent you have. The English


cannot distinguish Scottish accent. This is to do with class, deciding


which lay you come from and got his people .. It is pretty clear Alex


Ferguson is not an aristocrat. is to do with the words he uses.


Most of the aristocrats left Scotland a long time ago and they


didn't look after their people. are reading the long -- a long


history books, they are everywhere. The Duke of the glue, Duke of


Hamilton pulled up you go Paisley., We could do that this all day.


Thank you to our guests, thank you I will be back tonight with Alain


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