22/02/2012 Daily Politics


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Good morning. This is the Daily Politics.


Today's top story: Former Defence Secretary, Liam Fox, calls for more


public spending cuts to fund tax cuts for business. As lobbying


intensifies ahead of next month's Budget, has the Chancellor got any


room for manoeuvre? Iain Duncan Smith's flagship work


experience programme for jobseekers is under pressure, as Tesco's,


Argos and Superdrug demand changes to the scheme. So is it a great


leg-up for the unemployed, or the equivalent of 'forced labour'?


It's Wednesday so it must be Prime Minister's Questions. We'll bring


you live coverage of PMQs from Noon as Ed Miliband squares up to David


Cameron. And, as Nick Clegg visits an


Olympics venue, the writer and historian, Iain Sinclair, says the


Games are a disaster for East London. We need to defend the magic


and the interest of what this area already was - a place of industrial


fossils, wild beauty and thriving All that to come before 1:00pm, and


with us for the whole programme two accomplished political performers.


In fact you could say they are the Adele and James Corden of


Westminster! Caroline Flint, the shadow energy secretary, and the


policing minister, Nick Herbert. Welcome to you both. Now, there are


still four weeks to go before the Budget but George Osborne is


probably already a bit fed up of all the demands being made on him


and the unwanted public advice from some of his own backbenchers.


Yes, the former Defence Secretary, Liam Fox, has returned to politics


with a call for business regulations to be scrapped and


further public spending reductions to pay for tax cuts Some other


Conservative backbenchers are threatening to rebel unless the


Chancellor changes plans to cut child benefit from all higher rate


tax payers The CBI says that business taxes should be cut by


�500 million to boost growth and investment. Lib Dem, David Laws,


says pension tax relief for high earners should be scrapped to pay


for raising the income tax threshold to �10,000 immediately.


And Ed Balls, the Shadow Chancellor, has also called for tax cuts


suggesting a range of options for the Chancellor to be paid for by


extra borrowing. So, Nick Herbert, will the


Chancellor listen to his former Cabinet colleague, Liam Fox? They


used to share a curry together in the Treasury. We will have to wait


and see what happens in the Budget. There is quite an important point


of difference between the various representations that have been made


for some for reductions in taxation which should be funded by changes


and reduction in public spending. And Ed Balls, who is saying let us


reduce taxation, but actually we will fund it by borrowing. It is a


fundamental difference and fundamentally wrong. Why is it


wrong? It would put at risk, confidence in our economy, and at


risk, confidence in interest rates which is important for businesses


and households with mortgages and for the prospects of returning to


sustainable growth. Caroline Flint, what do you say to that?


Government is borrowing �158 billion more based on their


planned... Over a five-year period. It is part of their plans to cut


public spending. Yes, there would be cuts in public spending but you


have to stimulate growth and jobs as well on that is why we suggested


a temporary VAT reductions. It would cost 12 billion but the


dividends would out way that with getting people spending again. But


presently people are worrying about spending and it is having an


adverse effect on the economy. A temporary VAT cuts would create the


opportunity for families to spend more. We think it is the right


thing to do. You will never agree and these are well established a


opposing positions. But Liam Fox also said it is intellectually


unsustainable to believe workplace rights should remain untouchable.


Do you agree? We are taking measures to make it easier for


businesses to hire people and some of the changes we are making to


employment tribunals are about that. So you do agree? The flexibility is


important and we are taking steps to enhance that. The do you agree?


I think I have just agreed. wanted you to say the words.


agreed. We are getting somewhere. Should the Chancellor perform a U-


turn and child benefit for higher rate tax players -- taxpayers. He


might be defeated in the Commons if he doesn't. This is about the


Budget and what the Chancellor is going to say next month. It is


never a good idea for his colleagues to predict what he is


going to say. There is this idea you start paying benefit right of


the income scale even to people who don't require it. I think in all of


the changes we have been making, we have been focused on the lowest


paid. It is one of the important reasons we are making progress from


paying tax at all. Just for clarity, in this case, you don't agree he


should do a U-turn? I certainly don't agree that he should do a U-


turn, but these are matters for the Chancellor next month. Can I say


something about this idea to create jobs, you make it easier to sack


people which seems to be the Liam Fox argument. When I talk to


businesses in my constituency, the small businesses are worried that


even if they have more export opportunities, they are afraid to


expand because they don't get support from the banks and


elsewhere. The answer isn't growing our economy by making it easier to


sack people, we need to get lending going again, so small businesses


feel confident about taking people on. It is a disgrace there are


firms in our country who could expand but cannot do so because of


the mess this Government has got us into now. We will be speaking


exclusively to Liam Fox in the Sunday politics this weekend.


Now to the story that keeps on running - the Government's plans to


reform the NHS. This afternoon the Labour Party are staging a debate


in the House of Commons, calling on ministers to publish something


called the 'risk register' - a detailed analysis of what could


potentially go wrong with the proposed changes in the health


service. So far the Government has refused to publish the information.


We can talk now to a Lib Dem MP who wants the register to be published,


Andrew George. Why is it so important to get the


register published? Is it best to go into this debate in the dark, or


have the best information available. The fact is, it is better to have


as much information as possible from Government, if you are going


to particularly give the green light to what is going to beat the


biggest reorganisation of the health service in its 63 years.


People will say it is just another excuse to block the Bill, as they


are going through legislation, it is not wise to publish all of the


information, there has to be some confidentiality? The debate around


the risk register is it you like, a bit of a sideshow. The main issue


is the legitimacy of the Bill itself and the impact it is likely


to have on the NHS and that is worth the core of the debate is.


The debate about the risk register and its publication, which the


information tribunal clearly has instructed the Department of Health


to publish, is a sideshow, but it is the information and it would be


helpful in informing the debate. you think you'll get any more


concessions on the NHS bill? have to continue to work as best as


we can to achieve concessions. The latest we are pushing for as limo


Democrats, is too constrained democratisation of the NHS through


proposed amendments in the House of Lords and it is something I am sure


will be welcome if we can achieve it. My position is, although we


have made the bill less bad, I'm not persuaded the Bill should go


through. OK, Andrew George, thanks very much. Nick Herbert, you must


be fed up with your Lib Dem coalition colleagues? They have


disrupted this Bill all the way through, caused a pause in the


legislation, numerous concessions and they still want more. Nick


Clegg is reportedly trying to get more concessions so there isn't a


revolt at his party's spring conference. What do you say to


them? I am not fed up with them and there has been a process of debate


about the health reforms. They are important in terms of the transfer


of responsibility from the bureaucracy of Primary Care Trust,


and putting that responsibility effectively in the hands of GPs


through the commissioning groups, giving patients therefore, more


control, more choice. Saving money through the reduction in


bureaucracy, �4.5 million will be saved. The direction of travel of


these reforms are right. The point is, why at this stage are your


coalition colleagues still trying to change the Bill yet again? Is


that what Nick Clegg should be doing? Is it what you would expect


him to be doing? The Government is committed in seen these reforms


through. There is a process of Parliamentary debate. There is a


debate outside, the Prime Minister met some of the principal players


last week. It is perfectly OK to have a discussion about this and


people propose amendments. What is important is we maintain the


direction of these reforms. It is important the NHS does change,


because we needed to adapt to the modern challenges and rising costs


of care. It is important we move away from the bureaucratic system


we have had in the past and give it the opportunity to save money and


give patients more control. But she judges publish the at-risk register,


-- Risk Register? No Government has published a risk register. The


previous Government didn't. Andy Burnham himself refused a Freedom


of Information Act request to publish the risk register when he


was Health Secretary. Now he is calling for it, which is


hypocritical. Blatant opportunism? We are talking about a transition


risk register which is only to do with this massive reorganisation of


the NHS, which this coalition Government has decided to embark on.


When Andy Burnham was in Government, the issue was the department will


register. But this is different. isn't. It is, that is why the


information commissioner allowed it. When Andy was in Government, the


Information Commissioner did not insist. It is a risk register about


the reorganisation of the NHS. The information commissioner has seen


it and has said there is information that is pertinent to


the debate about the changes to the NHS. That is why we have is motion


today and white the Liberal Democrats can go with this today.


And why not just publish it? It is naked political opportunism. You're


not going to get civil servants to give advice of these risk registers


which requires them to set out things like worst case scenarios if


what they think is going to happen is, it is going to be published and


used for partisan political advantage. Governments have not


published these in the past. This is about a bill, an act that will


be made by you if you had your way. The public have never heard of a


risk register before. This is a sideshow about what the debate is


about, which is the importance of these reforms to secure the NHS for


the future. Naked political opportunism! We


have never heard that on this programme.


Is the Government's work experience scheme in trouble? It was hailed as


a way to help some of our one million unemployed 16 to 24 year


olds get jobs, providing work experience whilst participants


claim Jobseeker's Allowance. But it's not quite gone to plan.


Critics have accused companies involved of using slave labour and


now some of those big stores have also expressed concerns. So what


was the big idea, Jo? It must all have seemed so simple


when the Department for Work and Pensions came up with the scheme.


So how does it work? Under the Work Experience programme, young people


on benefits are offered placements of up to two months while still


receiving Jobseeker's Allowance plus expenses. The Government says


it's a voluntary scheme and participants can pull out in the


first week without sanctions. But pulling out any later could mean


they lose their benefits. Firms who have signed up include Boots,


McDonald's and Primark. Over 34,000 people have taken up the scheme and


50% of those have stopped claiming benefits. Work and Pensions


Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, says the scheme gives participants


experience, a line for their CV and a stint in business. But not


everyone agrees. Critics say people aren't able to do work experience


in their chosen field and that big companies are profiting from free


labour. Or "slave labour". They say that the scheme isn't voluntary as


those who pull out lose their benefits. So is the scheme in


danger of failing apart? Tesco, one of the firms who backed the scheme


has announced it'll offer paid placements with a guarantee of a


job to all those people it takes on - if they do well. And Argos and


Superdrug say they're suspending their involvement pending talks


with the DWP to ensure the scheme is voluntary and benefits won't be


removed from those who leave the scheme. But Hhecalls the scheme's


critics "modern-day Luddites" and And we are joined by Anne Marie


O'Reilly, from the campaign group Boycott Workfare. We can see the


absurdity in a multi-millionaire minister calling people jobs snobs.


By at you do not normally get paid work experience but in this case


they will get jobseeker's allowance of --. They have to work on threat


of sanctions. That is after they signed up. We have been contacted


by people this week who having seen it in the headlines, have found out


for the first time it is voluntary because that is not how it is being


portrayed. Once they signed up to it, they can step away very early


without sanctions but if they stay on it for a while, there is as


sanction. Most people will think, better to be getting some work


experience, getting up in the morning, mixing with colleagues,


and sitting at home doing nothing. The opting for one week is true of


only one of the government's five schemes. Other people put people to


work on threat of sanction it... How are you going to get a job if


These schemes are designed to hold another subsidy to big business.


ASDA, McDonald's and Tesco can afford to pay wages and they are


not. The government is basically introducing an eight-week, unpaid


interviewed for jobs? 1100 people worked for Tesco on the schemes and


did not get a job from it, which is hundreds of thousands of hours.


That is unpaid work. The taxpayer is paying them. Maybe we have a


right to expect them to do something for that money. What is


wrong with that principle? Young people earning �53 a week on


jobseeker's allowance, that is �200 a month. The idea that they should


be working 30 hour weeks in order to have the bare minimum to survive


is absurd and people can see that. That is why Iain Duncan-Smith is


coming out with mad accusations because the public at large can see


this is a threat to wall of us, because it is replacing paid work


and driving down wages -- threat to all of us. But you on the


jobseeker's Allowance, �53.45 for a young person a week, that works out


at �1.50 an hour. That is not what I would regard as much experience.


That is doing things for nothing. These people would be on this


benefit anyway. The question is, should they be allowed to


voluntarily joined a scheme that gives them experience? 34,000 have


been through this scheme and over half of them have gone into work so


it has benefited them and surely that is a good thing. What on earth


is wrong with that? In terms of these people who said they have


received sanctions, 200 people have received sanctions. You have the


option of dropping out after the first week if you do not like it.


This has been a good experience for people who would otherwise be on


benefits. It is not a form of slave labour, you are confusing it with


other schemes... Why are big companies like Tesco and Argos up


in arms? Chris Grayling, the minister in charge, said that you


were running a disgraceful campaign and when Tesco said, we are not too


happy about this, he said it was a U-turn and that it was a better


offer for young people. Which bit is the right? The Tesco offer is a


good offer! It is a good thing, if not a bad thing! You do not think


it is a disgraceful campaign? a misleading campaign. It has


benefited a lot of young people with experience while they are


claiming benefits and I disagree that the public will be worried


about this. The public will see it is voluntary, it is commonsense,


and it gives something... Can I correct you? Briefly. It is


disabled people and people with terminal cancer that this


government wants to make work for free. That is not happening for


Tesco. It's is voluntary. Do you have examples of Tesco employees


people with terminal cancer under this scheme? The government is


trying to keep these figures very much under wraps. You made an


accusation. Oh I have not made an accusation at Tesco but it is


government policy. You can look a DWP policy... You must approve of


what the government is doing because it is a continuation of


Labour policies. James Purnell said in 2008 that Reggie everyone on


benefits should be forced to do something in return -- that


everyone on benefits. When I was Employment Minister we had the


scheme to get people ready for work through the JobCentre, so they


could apply for apprenticeships and training programmes, but the key


issue is about how much these schemes will lead to a job and what


you can't have, and maybe this is one of the worries of Argos and


Tesco and Primark, is this perceived as a conveyor belt of


people coming through on eight weeks cycles replacing people who


might be in full-time and part-time work and you have to be on the ball


about that. Let me put that to the minister. Of those who have been on


it, over half have gone into work so there is evidence it is


successful in giving people... into permanent jobs? Into jobs or


coming off benefits. What is a permanent job these days? There are


no figures on the government about what proportion have gone into work.


Labour, to its shame, introduce these schemes. The difference is


the coalition is rolling it out on a massive scale. Nearly 400,000


people had been referred to the work programme in the last year and


the government has yet to tell us how many have been forced into


similar unpaid work positions. It can be for up to six months which


is disgusting. You do need to give people out of work the opportunity


for work placements. The question is, what support is given to these


people on the outset and what journey will they be on? That is


why the Future Jobs Fund was very much geared to looking at companies,


both in the public and private sector, who could look at their


work force and say, we will work with the JobCentre and see if we


can get some of your people into jobs. We cannot have a conveyor


belt... EU have made that point. The Tory MP said last night that


your campaign is a lot of people waving a copy of the Socialist


Worker? Absurd! Are you a member of that party? Absolutely not. Boycott


Workfare was formed by people who have experience of these schemes


and is driven by the public who are outraged that the high street and


big companies are being propped up by people... It is not forced.


does it have a sanction attached to its then? We have to move on. Thank


you for being with us. There is an idea that David Cameron is trying


to freeze the minimum wage next month. There is all sorts of talk!


We have been discussing it for half-an-hour. Stop doing this!


come onto his programme for me to tell you what the government is


doing? Let's wait and see what the Chancellor does next month! I know


when I am not getting anywhere! Now yesterday Communities Secretary


Eric Pickles launched the Government's new community


integration strategy, a plan to help us all get along with each


other a little bit better. Lovely! It is never going to work! One of


his proposals is the concept of a Big Lunch, where neighbours sit


down together to eat a big lunch. Who would ever have thought that


Eric Pickles would come up with the idea of a big lunch? It would not


be a small lunch! If the "big society" has disappeared without


trace, why not have a big lunch? And what better way to get a big


lunch off to a good start than making sure you've all got the best


crockery on show. Something like a Daily Politics mug perhaps. You


wondered where we were going with that! So did I because I had not


seen the script before! But to get your hands on one you will have to


win our Guest the Year competition. Can you remember when this


A fair local tax is one which does not fall too heavily on any, single


# It's no secret #. Lift-off of Colombia on its first


# Looking to your heart, you will find #.


We as hostages will give our utmost support to see in this problem


finished. # Don't tell me it is not worth


# At everything I do, they do it for you #.


To be in with a chance of winning a Daily Politics mug, send your


answer to our special quiz email address. And you can see the full


terms and conditions for Guess The Year on our website.


What it is coming up to midday, so we can look at Big Ben behind me.


There she is, he is, or whatever. Prime Minister's Questions is on


the way. Nick Robinson is with me. An unusual start to PMQs. We have


grown used to starts in which tributes are paid to soldiers who


have died in Iraq, then in Afghanistan. I am told that he will


pay tribute to a Marines, the veteran, brilliant foreign


correspondent of the Sunday Times, somebody I know you knew and I


think you even hired, who died today in Syria, who so I think it


will be a moment in which the House is reminded of the horror of what


is happening in Syria, the risks that some extraordinary brave


colleagues of hours take to bring that used to the world. -- ours.


She was American by background but became very British, one of the


foremost correspondents. I think she was the foremost foreign


correspondent of her generation. Wherever there was trouble in the


world, you could be pretty sure that she was there and she


reported... She was always in the thick of it and her reporting was


superb, completely honest, no agenda at all, and full of


compassion. It is interesting that she was doing that right down to


the last minute and broadcasters... She often got to places that we


couldn't get too! People listening to Radio 4 this morning we have


heard her voice. I think it was recorded yesterday. There was an


added poignancy that hours later we learned she had died in an


explosion. Very symbolic as the eye patch that she had to wear over ten


years because she lost that when a grenade hit her in Sri Lanka, which


was just a sign... Sri Lanka, the Maghreb, Chechnya, she was there.


It is very sad, I was very sad when I heard that news today. What else


will happen? I will be amazed if Ed Miliband does not go on health.


Week after week he has made the Prime Minister looks pretty


uncomfortable on the subject. A week ago, before half-term, he was


able to get away at some of the tensions within the Tory party. I


would be surprised if he did not try to do the same for the Liberal


Democrats. What we also know it is the Liberal Democrats are having a


spring conference. They do this old fashioned thing called democracy in


the Liberal Democrats and that means the leadership cannot control


what is debated and there is already an emergency motion tabled,


it may not get chosen, calling for the Health and Social Care Bill to


get scrapped. It is the same man pushing it to push it a year ago.


One of the things that contributed to the pause. There is a petition


among at Lib Dems to scrap the Bill and there is certainly a sense that


even senior Liberal Democrats might want to water down part of the


competition clauses. I heard something very interesting


yesterday, Andrews. Nick Clegg is now telling his allies that they


are losing more activists over this issue of health than they did over


the increase in tuition fees. That is how serious the Health and


Social Care Bill is a Liberal Democrats because for them, many of


whom either work in the health service and have friends in the


health service, they have got an instinctive distrust of the


Conservatives on this issue and they don't quite get one of their


party is going along with it. instinctive rather than detailed. I


suspect even Lib Dem activists for don't really know what is in it.


absolutely. Vast numbers of people say they don't know what is in it,


around 80%. Go around the House of Commons and asked... It is about


trust. In the end, the nervousness on the Labour side, privatisation


and competition. I occasionally TVs Labour former ministers and say,


you brought in private companies -- I occasionally TVs. -- tease.


Straight to the House of Commons I am sure the whole House will wish


to join me in sending our deepest condolences to the families and


friends of senior aircraft man, Ryan Tomlin. It is clear from the


tributes paid to him, he was a determined young man with potential.


His service and sacrifice to this nation will never be forgotten.


Members of the House will have seen the talented and respected foreign


correspondents of the Sunday Times, Marie Colvin, has been killed in


the bombing in Syria. It is a desperately sad reminder of the


risks journalists take to inform the world on what is happening and


off thoughts are with her family and friends. I have had meetings


with ministerial colleagues and others, and I will have further


such meetings later today. Can I associate myself but the


Prime Minister's Commons with -- about our brave troops and the


brave journalists to report their activities as well. The Prime


Minister has said one of his main priorities is fighting crime. Then


why since the election there has been a cut in over 4,000 in the


number of frontline police officers? In South Yorkshire, the


police helicopter which was responsible for apprehending over


700 criminals last year, will be scrapped by the police minister


against the advice of the Chief Constable? How can he explain these


matters, which indicate to the public that crime will rise when it


is simply another broken promise... The Prime Minister. I on the issue


of the helicopter, there are talks under way between the South


Yorkshire Police and ACPO. I'm sure coverage will be maintained. I


would make the point recorded crime is down under this Government. And


also, if you look at the figures from her Majesty's Inspectorate of


the constabulary, they believe there will be more invisible


policing roles this march of than there were a year ago.


This Monday was meant to be a happy reunions for pupils at Alvechurch


middle school following their half- term break. But it turned out to be


a day of mourning for the school and the community because of the


news of a coach crash in France. He claimed the life of a much-loved


local teacher, Mr Peter Rippington and left many schoolchildren


seriously injured. Will the Prime Minister join me in expressing


sympathy for those affected and for those who are still in France being


treated, a swift recovery and speedy return home? I am grateful


to him for raising this desperately, desperately sad case. I know Peter


Rippington was much respected in the local community and that the


school and will be missed. Thoughts and sincere condolences I am sure


from everyone in the House will be with his constituents. I can tell


him our consular staff in France continued to provide support to


those in France. The ambassador has visited passengers in hospital and


is liaising with the local authorities and we will do


everything we can with the French authorities to get people safely


home. Mr Ed Miliband. Can I join the Prime Minister in


paying tribute to senior aircraft and an Ryan Thomson from the RAF


Regiment, who died bravely and courageously serving our country


and our thoughts are with his family and friends. We are also


thinking today about the tragic death of Marie Colvin. She was a


brave and tireless reporter across many continents and in many


difficult situations. She was an inspiration to women in her


profession. Her reports in the hours before her death showed her


works at her finest. Our thoughts today are with her family and


friends. Mr Speaker, on Monday the Prime Minister held his emergency


NHS summit. He managed to execute - - exclude the main organisations if


other following professions, the GPS, the midwives, the


psychiatrists, the physiotherapists and the radiologist's. How can he


think it is a good idea to hold a held summit which excludes the vast


majority of people who work in the NHS? What I want to do a safeguard


the NHS. We on this side of the house, we are putting more money


into the NHS. Money they are specifically, explicitly committed


to taking out. Money alone is not going to be enough. We have got to


meet the challenge of an ageing population, more expensive


treatments, more people on long- term conditions and that is why we


have to reform the NHS. My summit was about those organisations


including clinical commissioning groups up and down the country,


8,200 GP practices that want to put these reforms in place. A Ed


Miliband. So he has no answer to his ridiculous sum at which


excluded the bass majority of people who were in the medical


profession? Let's remind ourselves what the Prime Minister said just a


few short months ago during his so called listening exercise. He said


change, if it is to work should have the support of people who work


in the NHS. We have to take on nurses and doctors with us. Now he


can't even be in the same a room as the doctors and nurses! Doesn't


that tell him that he has lost the confidence of those who work in our


National Health Service? What I want to know is, when is he going


to ask a question about the substance of the reforms? He


doesn't want to ask about choice because they used to be in favour


of choice. But there won't back choice in the bill for stampede


does not want to ask a question about competition because they used


to favour competition. They used to support GPs are put in charge of


health budgets. They won't support it, even though now it is in the


bill. Why not ask a serious question? Why not incidentally, as


we are being kept here to vote at 7pm on the publication of the risk


registers, why don't it you ask a question about that? Mr Ed Miliband.


If he does not think it is a serious question about the


exclusion of the vast majority of people the work in the NHS, he


shouldn't worried... Order. The house must calm down. Tranquil and


statesmanlike is the mode for which a members should stride. Mr Ed


Miliband. We will come to the substance of this Bill. But let me


ask me -- in his question, there were people who attended the summit


and expressed the concerns about his bill, even those who were


invited to his summit. So can he tell us what changes, if any, he is


planning to make to his bill? doesn't he stop worrying about a my


diary and start worrying about his complete lack of substance? We are


going ahead with these reforms because we think it is good for


patients to have choice. We think it is good to have the involvement


of independence and voluntary sectors in the NHS. We think it is


good to have more emphasis on public health. That is why we are


doing these reforms. Let me remind him of one thing he used to believe.


He used to believe this, and this is what his health secretary said -


the private sector puts its capacity into the NHS for the


benefit of NHS patients, which I think most people in this country


will celebrate. They are committed to a 5% cap on the private sector,


which would need hospitals like the Marsden Hospital, sacking doctors,


sacking nurses and closing wards. Let me ask him again, we are here


at 7pm to vote on the risk register, are you going to ask a question


about it, or are you frightened of your own motion? It would be good


if we can preserve some Parliamentary manners. The Prime


Minister will know I am not frightened of anything. Mr Ed


Miliband. Mr Speaker, nobody lead - - believes him and nobody trusts


him on the NHS. I met with senior staff working with HIV services to


explain to me how this Bill will fragment and disrupt services. The


Health Secretary should be quiet and listen to the people who work


in the health service! If he had done some listening before... He


should calm down, Mr Speaker. They explain HIV treatments is


commissioned by one organisation, the Primary Care Trust. Under his


plans, it will be commissioned by three organisations, the national


commissioning Board, the clinical commissioning Group and the Health


and well-being board. They certainly it will damage the world


class service they provide for patients. Why won't he listened to


the people who actually know what they are talking about in the NHS?


If the Right Honourable Gentleman is opposing other organisations


that have expertise in Aids and treatment taking part in the NHS he


will be opposing the Terrence Higgins Trust, who do an enormous


amount to support her HIV. The fact is, what we can see is complete


opportunism from the party opposite. They used to back choice, backed


the independent sector, back reform. I say, you don't save the NHS by


opposing reform, you save it by delivering reform. Ed Miliband.


does not understand his own bill. Mr Speaker, let me just explain to


him the question was about the fragmentation of commissioning and


what the experts... Order. Opposition Members are becoming


over-excited. And there is a long time to go and I want to get to the


bottom of the Order Paper. Let me address the Health Secretary, I


don't think the Prime Minister wants advice from him. Let me


explain, it is about the fragmentation of commissioning. You


have got it, I am glad. Maybe then when you get up Buchan answer the


question?! Border! Keep me out of The reason he has lost... Order!


Order! I say that to the Shadow Chancellor as well. Members might


be enjoying themselves, I ask them to think what the country thinks.


Order! Of what the country things on and we conduct ourselves. He has


lost the confidence and the NHS because of the promises he made


before the election. Will he give a straight answer to the question I


asked two weeks ago, and admits he has broken his promise of no top-


down reorganisation? Any longer, I think we would have to put him on a


waiting list for care, it took so long. He asked about integration,


he asks about... Let me explain to him, caused 22 and caused 25 at


plays a specific duty on key organisations to integrate health


and social care. The Bill is all about integration. Here we are,


question five, and he still won't mention his vote on the risk


registers. I think I know why. Because I have here Labour's brief


for this afternoon's debate. There is an excellent section explaining


why you don't publish risk registers. The second argument is


particularly strong, it goes like this. Andy Burnham block the


publication of the Department of Health Risk register in September


2009. There we are, absolutely revealed as a bunch and rank


opportunists, not fit to run opposition and not fit for


Government. I will tell you what happens under the last Labour


Government, the lowest waiting times in history. A more doctors


and nurses than ever before. The high as patient satisfaction on the


NHS. I will match our record on a NHS with him any day of the week.


And the problem with this Prime Minister is he asked people to


trust him and he has betrayed that trust. The problem with this Prime


Minister is that on the NHS, he thinks he is right and everyone


else is wrong. It has become, not a symbol on how his party has changed,


but of his arrogance. I'd tell him this, this will become his poll tax.


He should listen to the public and Six questions and not a mention of


the motion may have put in front of the House tonight! To not back it


up is an absence of leadership. Members of both sides of the House


are yelling at each other. It is rude and it should stop. Let me


tell him what is actually happening in the health service under this


government. Waiting times for outpatients, down. Waiting times


for in-patients, down. Number of people waiting in total, down.


Number of people waiting for more than a year, half. Hospital


infections, down. Mixed-sex wards down by 94%. 4,000 more doctors.


1,000 more midwives and fewer managers. He talks about what


people think about this government. Let me remind him of what his


candidate said about him this week. You are not articulating a vision


or destination, you are not clearly identifying a course and no one is


following years. My problem is, you are not a leader. If I couldn't


have put it better myself. Thank you, Mr Speaker. In 2009 when the


Conservatives took control of Lancashire County Council,


fostering services were rated as unsatisfactory. Since then, their


budget has reduced by �120,000 and they are now rated as outstanding.


Would my right honourable friend join me in congratulating the


county councillor and his Conservative colleagues for not


only do more for less but doing it better as well. I certainly join my


honourable friend. Across the country you have different councils


could be with the issues of fostering and adoption and


producing very different results -- coping with the issues. I think we


need to publish these figures for we can see which councils are


getting value for money but above all, which families are really


doing the best to get those children out of care and into a


loving home. The national minimum wage has lifted millions of workers


out of poverty pay so will the Prime Minister's support hard-


working people and give a commitment today to drop and just


plans to freeze it? We support the minimum wage and we have supported


its up grading and it has an important role to play.


children of Somalia should have an expectation of a life before death.


Does not tomorrow's London conference at E opportunity to


signal to the terrorists and corrupt that we are determined to


do what we can to ensure stability and good governance in Somalia --


provide the opportunity? Given Somaliland's experience of peace


building in the region. We will be welcoming the President of


Somaliland to the conference and Somaliland has taken an important


step forward in showing that you can have better governance, better


economic progress, and they are in many ways an example to follow but


this conference is not about recognising Somaliland, it is about


trying to put in place the building blocks in the international


computer -- community and the Somalis themselves for a stronger


Somalia, and that means taking action on piracy, hostages, and to


increase funding in Mogadishu, and working with all parts of Somalia


to try to give that country, which has been more blighted by famine,


disease, terrorism and violence, and almost any other in the world,


to give that country a second chance. Given what the Prime


Minister said last week in Scotland, which he devote as much time to


facing up to the grievances that the English feel from the current


proposals of devolution as he will be giving new proposals to


Scotland? When he opened a major debate on the English question so


that members of all parts of the house can advise him on what


measures of devolution English people need if we are too big


equity with other parts of the UK - - will he opened a major debate?


have set up a West Lothian group to look at this and we need to make


sure that devolution works for everyone in the United Kingdom but


I would part company slightly because I believe the United


Kingdom has been an incredibly successful partnership between all


its members and I think that far from wanting to appeal to English


people, to nurture a grievance they feel, I want to appeal to my fellow


Englishman to say, this has been a great partnership for Scotland and


a great partnership for England. Scotland must make its choice but


we hope Scotland will choose to remain in this partnership that has


done so well for the last 300 years. Does the Prime Minister agree that


an elected mayor with more power presents a great authority for


local people, including those of us in Bristol that want more rail in


the area? I do support having elected mayors in our great cities.


It is for those cities to choose. I am encouraged by what has happened


in Liverpool. We will be having a referendum and people in Bristol


will be able to make that choice but at the same time, the


government is going through a huge act and devolution to cities in


terms of the powers and the money that we are prepared to offer them


so that they can build their own future. If you think of how Bristol


leaves Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, -- Bristol, Leeds,


Manchester. They built themselves up not from instruction from London.


On Tuesday, the Education Secretary said the Prime Minister's decision


to set up the Leveson Inquiry is having a chilling effect on freedom


of expression. Thus the Education Secretary speak for the government?


-- does the? It was right to set up the Leveson Inquiry and that is


very supported by the entire government but I do think that my


right honourable friend is making an important point, which is even


as this inquiry goes on, we want to have a vibrant press that feels it


can call the powerful to account and we don't want it... Although


sometimes one may feel some advantage to having it been chilled,


but that is not what we want. constituents will be supporting the


Chancellor's refusal yesterday to sign of the EU accounts. Does the


Prime Minister agree with me that it is totally unacceptable that for


17 years, they have failed to get orderlies to sign off on their


accounts? It wasn't just Britain that took the stand, it was the


Dutch and the Swedes as well. For too long these accounts have not


been properly dealt with and corruption has not been properly


dealt with and it is right to make this stand. Last week in Edinburgh,


the Prime Minister said there were more powers on the table for


Scotland but could not name any. A few months ago he mocked the idea


of Scotland control its own oil wealth. Can the Prime Minister at


name one power he has on his mind from this latest U-turn? I did not


think that the Scottish Nationalist Party favour devolution! I thought


they favour of separation! Yet a thing as you are offered a


referendum that gives you the chance to put that in front of the


Scottish people, you start running away -- as soon as you. Tomorrow


members of this House will have the chance to debate the importance of


cycling. The Minister for cycling has made some welcome and


announcements and Investment. There is much to do. Will the Prime


Minister commit the government to support this campaign, increase


investment in cycling and take much greater steps to promote cycling


across the country? This Times campaign is excellent. Anyone who


has got on a bicycle particularly in one of our busiest cities knows


that you are taking your life into your hands. We do need to do more


to makes life a link -- cycling safer. The government is making it


putting in money for training for children and better cycling routes


and facilities. If we want to encourage the growth in cycling we


have seen, we want to get behind campaigns like this. Since he has


been prime minister,... The company has won contracts on


the DWP alone worth 224 million. In view of the facts there are record


numbers of unemployed people and that employees of this company have


been arrested, what action is he taking to make sure that neither


vulnerable unemployed people from all the taxpayer are victims of


fraud? This is an important issue. I understand this issue dates back


two years to schemes run by the previous government... It was the


company itself that raised the issue with the relevant authorities.


There is an ongoing police investigation so it would be


inappropriate for me to comment further. The investigation needs to


be thorough and then we can take into account its findings.


Generations of young people have benefited from work experience


schemes through getting any experience of the working world.


Will the Prime Minister praised those companies who will do


everything they possibly can to encourage work experience schemes


unlike the militant hard left who would like to see people get a


handout rather than a hand up? is true, the overwhelming majority


of the country thinks that companies offering work experience


schemes to those on benefits is a good thing. It is not a compulsory


scheme, it is a scheme that young people have asked to go on and the


findings are that around half of them are getting work at the end of


these schemes. That is a far better outcome than the Future Jobs Fund


and about the 20th of the cost so we should encourage companies and


young people to expand work- experience because it gives people


the chance of seeing work and all that it involves an gives them a


better chance of getting a job. Thousands of workers right across


Lancashire in every constituency are concerned and angry about the


Eurofighter Indian contract. Earlier this week you her -- had a


meeting with the Tory MPs. When will you be arranging a meeting for


all Lancashire MPs? I am not arranging any meetings at 10


Downing Street but it is possible the Prime Minister might. I met


with a number of MPs who have BAE Systems in their constituents,


including the honourable member for Hull, so why have had many MPs come


to see me. -- so I have had. This government is committed to helping


with Thai food in every way we can and that is why I had been taking


trips right across the Middle East -- Typhoon. I often get criticised


by Labour MPs for taking BAe system on the aeroplane but I think it is


right to fly the flag for British Industry! Last week at the


breakfast table... My wife was saying how she knew the Prime


Minister wanted to deport that terrorist Abu Qatada straight away


and put the national interest first,... But she knew it was being


blocked by the Deputy Prime Minister and the Liberal Democrats.


Suddenly, our 11-year-old son Thomas asked...


LAUGHTER Foster are his Nick Clegg a goodie or a bad it? -- is Nick


Clegg a goodie or baddie? There is only so much detail I can take from


your household! In believing that I am very keen that Abu Qatada should


be deported, your wife is indeed psychic. That is exactly what I


believe. That is why the Home Secretary is working so hard with


the Jordanians to get the assurances that we need so that


this can take place and the Deputy Prime Minister family backs that


approach! -- fully backs that approach! Rents are falling in the


private rented sector, you have said, when the evidence is that


rent is rising. Will the Prime Minister now take this opportunity


to put the record straight or which he continued to blame the tenant


when the real responsibility lies with landlords charging ever higher


rent and a failure of his government's house building


programme -- which he continued to blame? Coming from a party that saw


housebuilding fall to its lowest level since the 1920s! We have put


great effort into stamping out and kicking out racism in football in


this country. When my right honourable friend brings together


the sport later today, will he assure the House he will do


everything to ensure that prejudice does not creep back into the game


and that racism stays out of football? My honourable friend is


right to raise this. It was a huge achievement, where Britain and its


football authorities and football clubs lead the world in kicking


racism Out Of Football, something that has not happened in all other


countries. Some of the recent signs are worrying. This matters so much


not just to football but to government and everyone in the


country because footballers are role-models to young people. What


people see on the football pitch, they copied when they go to learn


to play football so it is important to bring people together and make


sure we keep racism out of football for good. Can I associate myself


with the Prime Minister's condolences to the member of the


armed forces who lost his life in the last week? I am sure the Prime


Minister would like to join me in thanking the thousands of people we


serve in the reserve armed forces. However, does he agree that it is


inappropriate and unsatisfactory and perhaps even arrogant that when


constituents to serve in the reserve Marine forces in Dundee


expressed concerns about the possible closure of that attachment,


I wrote to the Ministry of Defence and they have refused to give me a


definitive answer? I thank the honourable gentleman for raising


the case of the brave man from the RAF who gave his life and all of


those who serve in Afghanistan. The Reserve forces in our country are a


huge national asset. We want to see them expanded. We have put an


billion pounds into that expansion to make sure that we can do that.


No decision has been taken on the future of Dundee. If you look


across Scotland, you will see we need more people to join the


reserves. I hope everybody will back the recruitment campaigns


because if we are going to move to an army of 80,000 regulars and


40,000 reservists, we need a cultural change will be really


respect what our reserve forces are doing -- where we really respect.


The US marshals will on Friday is caught my 65-year-old constituent


from Heathrow to a jail in Texas where he will face pressure to


plea-bargain -- if caught. Can the Prime Minister say the steps he is


taking to withdraw the expedition treaty which has been so unfair to


the likes of Gary McKinnon and now my constituent. I understand why my


honourable friend raises this. In the case of Chris tapping, he has


obviously been through a number of processes, and the Home Secretary


has thoroughly considered his case. He raised his book point more


generally of the report into the extradition arrangements, which we


are now considering. He did not call for fundamental reform. The


Home Secretary will carefully examine his findings and take into


account the views of Parliament that have been expressed in recent


debates. Balancing these arrangements is vital but it is


important that at the same time we remember why we welcome -- enter


into these treaties, which is to show respect for each other's


judicial treaties and make sure people can be tried for crimes and


Britain can benefit from that as well, so a proper and thoughtful


review must take place and this case shows why. My government


response to the unfair relationship between pub companies and their


licensees so far has been self- regulation, not statutory


regulation. On January 12th, this House voted unanimously to set up a


review panel to be agreed by the Business Select Committee to review


the implementation of self- regulation. To date there has been


absolutely no response from the government. Can the Prime Minister


tell me, is he back in the will of Parliament or the will of the pub


companies? I am a keen supporter of Britain's pubs so I will write to


the honourable gentleman and get a good answer. In his speech made in


Edinburgh last week, the Prime Minister described Scotland as a


pioneering country and a turbine hall of the Industrial Revolution.


The next revolution in this country will be in green technology and the


Green Investment Bank will be key in its promotion. Does he agree it


Edinburgh is the perfect location And the different towns and cities


and regions want to host this green investments of the investment bank.


Can I ask the Prime Minister returning to the issue of the NHS


and the Pirton and question posed by the leader of the opposition,


why has the Prime Minister broken his promise not to engage in


another top and reorganisation of the National Health Service?


What we are doing is abolishing the bureaucracy that has been holding


the NHS back. We will be cutting in this Parliament, �4.5 billion of


bureaucracy by getting rid of the primary care trusts and strategic


health authorities, all of which will be invested in patient care.


His own party's policy is saying real increases in NHS spending are


"irresponsible". We think it is responsible and that is why we are


putting the money in and they will take the money out. There have been


lot of interruptions but I am concerned about the interests of


backbenchers. Last week in Ethiopia would save the children, I saw at


first hand how malnutrition is stunting the growth of the world's


poorest children. Does the Prime Minister agreed the UK as a real


opportunity to lead the international debate which will


help the growth of the world's children and economic growth as


well. I think she is right about this. Not only because we work with


excellent organisations, Save the children, who do excellent work,


but the UK is the second largest bilateral donor into the horn of


Africa where we have seen this awful famine. Not only are we doing


our bit in terms of investment and time, but it gives us an


opportunity to lead the debate on where we need to take the


development on aid agenda next. Order. Ten-minute rule motion.


The Speaker allowed PMQs to overrun because of the interruptions and


the rowdiness during questions about the NHS. I was thinking I


wonder if the founding fathers of the NHS going back to 1848, would


have thought by 2012 it could still create such heat and light in the


House of Commons, so many years later? Ed Miliband decided to go on


that subject. It is the first pit - - fur PMQs in a row he has gone on


the NHS. -- third PMQs. As you say, most people think David


Cameron was on the run over this issue.


Diane said, I have heard nothing from David Cameron that reduces my


anxiety and the NHS reforms. This from David in Birmingham -


complete hypocrisy. David Cameron said his reforms needed the support


of health professionals but he is ignoring them because they don't


agree. Someone else said, what of those


risk registers Ed Miliband was going on about?


Martin from Wolverhampton said, Ed Miliband's questions were shallow,


the role of Government should be to lead, that means facing down


interest groups who oppose change. Someone else said, are all Ed


Miliband cares about is people the work in the NHS, not about those


who use it. I remember the days in the NHS was


not to talk about it. Except that we will ring-fence it, but it is


safe in our hands. When they said that, the polls showed they


overtook Labour and trust for a brief period. Today the gap is back


to his -- its historic whiteness. Where did it go wrong? It is a


self-inflicted wound. People do give David Cameron credit for the


reform of the NHS, which since its foundation has been seen as a


Labour issue. Margaret Thatcher said she went private because she


wanted to go to see the doctor she wanted, on the day she wanted and


the time she wanted. But then became the policy of all


governments within the NHS, rather than the private sector. The truth


is they did not think through the politics of what this Bill would


mean and how they would get it through. David Cameron is


determined not to abandon it, and as I was saying, the biggest threat


to it now comes from the grass roups -- grass roots the Lib Dem


revolt rather than the Cabinet, where everyone has decided to hold


their nose, carry on until the summer and hope something else


comes up. The danger is, if they give in to more concessions to the


Lib Dems, or Labour Peers and the House of Lords, and they whittle it


down even more, it won't be worth the candle. They have all this he


put on them for reforms for skeleton of what it was meant to


be? Not only that, what Ed Miliband argued also, a change had to have


the doctors and nurses on side, now you won't be in the same room as


them. The most interesting one which David Cameron ignored was the


complexity of commissioning. I know ministers who are worried, that in


an attempt to bite of this opposition, keep the Lib Dems happy,


they have created a more and more complex bureaucratic structure, but


far from saving cash will involve a series of disputes from different


bodies within the NHS, it is this our money to spend? Let's have a


legal challenge to it. So the challenge which is recognised by


ministers internally. The big week will be next week over the


competition. The hints given by Nick Clegg he gave today, is a week


are a listening Government. So the hint was, there may be more


concessions to come on the issue of competition. It is not just the


public understanding the detail, it is most people involved in the NHS,


we work for an organisation, we don't always understand the detail


on how they run. But the danger is things go wrong in a way that


affects patient care and then people turn round and blame the


Government. If you could escape Cabinet collective responsibility


and able to be honest with us, I bet you would say, Andrew, I wish


we had never gone down this road? On the hypothetical, I cannot


escape collective responsibility. I don't want it. The choice is


whether you think the NHS can standstill or if you have to make


changes to enable it to rise to the challenges of the ageing population,


the cost of treatment, the long- term illnesses people have. We


believe it is necessary to make these changes. It is in the context


of rising spending on the NHS, are the principal it remains care that


it is free at the point of use and extending the principles the


previous Government agreed to. people think you could have done


these changes without the need for a massive bill. We could have


picked up where Labour left off and you could have continued without


the left of the Labour Party and the unions... Then you would have


lost significant savings because removing these bureaucracies...


have created bigger bureaucracies since the NHS has been founded?


is a 4.5 billion saving. I don't think is true there is unanimous


opposition amongst the professionals in the health service.


I know from my own constituency, talking to GPs, where the ability


control services in the interest of the patience is welcomed. It was


clear from the summit, where the Prime Minister was talking to these


groups on how the changes will work. The other., Labour believed there


is a short-term advantage in jumping on this and opposing these


reforms. But, look at how they are going back on reforms from a


position the previous Government had. Backwards on health reform


where they are turning their back on education and the anti- reform


parties. It won't do them very good. Caroline Flint, we know Labour is


against this health bill, you are voting against it and so on. But


does Labour have a policy on health now? We did have a policy on health


which we still support. It involves looking at our health service and


how it changes. We still support more of the services in hospitals,


being in communities to prevent people getting ill. The key issue,


is the start of this process the Government embarked upon, a process


they promised in the manifesto they wouldn't and wasn't in the


coalition agreement. They wanted to put clinicians, the health service


workers in the front line of the discussions about the future of the


NHS. We now have a situation where, I would say it is unanimous, ensure


you will find doctors and nurses who supported - but overwhelmingly


all the institutions to represent doctors, radiologist's and nurses


and so on, say they are not happy. Why are they not happy? It could


open up our NHS to European competition law which would distort


the way we have a managed NHS which uses the private and public sector


to effect. It is different to using the private sector to get capacity


into opening it up to a free-for- all. They are saying in our


hospitals, in order to balance the books, half the beds been used for


private patients. We are hearing consultants saying, we cannot see


within the time limits we used to have, but if you go private we will


see you next week. I don't want to go back to those days. Waiting


times are falling. They are falling for in-patients and outpatients.


Waiting times for A&E are missing their targets, waiting times to get


is seen in 18 weeks are. Can I come back and get an answer to my


question? How will Labour reform the NHS? We would carry on some of


the work we were dealing in Government, which is look at ways


in which having services in our community which will better help


people prevents illnesses in the future. What else? Collaborative


network to do with cancer. One of the dangers the Government is doing


now... You on to the Government again, I am asking you about Labour


now. Our policy is supporting and managed NHS. I don't know what that


means? You have an NHS that has local accountability and we have


said we are happy to look at a more clinician input into that. We had


an NHS that it was working well, huge satisfaction and cost-


effective, when you look at some of the regimes around the world where


it is a more private sector involvement. In our country we have


something unique and precious, and which is why so many members of the


public, including those who vote Conservative are worried about what


might happen to something that is so valued within our country.


Miliband, third week in a row he has done well? Yes, this is a rich


seam for him. He is playing the Prime Minister's words back at him.


What is so damaging for David Cameron is having those words to


say we have to have the doctors and nurses onside, and now the joke,


you cannot have them in the same route. It does enormous damage to


the Prime Minister. Another break point, Frank Field, Labour


backbencher speaking up for the English. And when he did so, saying


they should be more devolution, quite a lot of Cheers. I could not


see where they were coming from, I There is a growing view that


Westminster are just has to negotiate the terms of the divorce,


but if the Scottish decide to stay in the UK but want one devolution,


that becomes as big an issue for England as for Scotland and it


cannot be one way. It is not up to the Scots alone to decide what more


devolution should mean. The rest of the United Kingdom has to have a


say as well. There are aspects which are important for us to


discuss in England. If we look at regions around the country, bit


ability for them to encourage investment -- and the ability. I am


sure places like the Yorkshire and Humberside, where I have my


constituency, we would like to look at opportunities for that... Back


to regional government. In the localism built... No... We put in a


bill to allow some of the powers that the mayor in London has in


other parts of England. This is a debate that is about England as


well. There were huge latitude over tax regimes and therefore you get


into internal tax competition, where the Scots are able to do one


thing in the north and the Midlands have no... A lot of the anger was


about MPs just below the border, in the north, who could see the new


powers and ability just a few miles away, and thought, what about us?


It is the extremities of the UK, often amongst the poorest, the


north-east, the south-west for example, where people will say, we


need more power. The West Lothian question should remain. A lot of


people will think that if there is devolution, more devolution, they


will wonder whether Scottish MPs will be voting at all on purely


English matters. It is all in debate. Only two more years to go!


We don't have to resolve its this week! Big news while we were


watching PMQs. Eric Pickles has sent me a tweet to say he wants a


cup, too. Being avuncular and friendly, Eric Pickles, we will


give you one but you have to come on the programme to get it. A are


you going to be Big Lunch? I always like a big lunch.


Just 156 days to go before the London Olympics, and preparations


for the Games are stepping up a gear. Today a mocked-up terror


attack on the London Underground is being staged as part of a massive


exercise to test security. And this morning Nick Clegg has been


visiting some of the venues for the Games. The Deputy PM said he


believed the Olympics will leave a legacy of growth and jobs for the


area. But not everyone is happy about the greatest show on earth


arriving in London. The writer Iain Sinclair has spent decades


documenting the capital city and its edgelands. He says the Olympic


development in east London has ruined one of the capital's most


magical wildernesses. Here's his The promoters of the great Olympic


schemes in the Lower Lea Valley keep stressing at every possible


occasion that this area was nothing but a waste land, when in fact it


was one of the most magical margins of London, reduced by their


activities to nothing but a toxic well than us. -- wilderness. The


special quality of this landscape is that it mixed decaying


industrialism with grunge pasture, a wild nature of orchards that


everybody was free to wander, and we are now in danger of losing all


of that for some concrete Arcadia, some computer-generated future, and


I am sad about that. One of the consequences of creating the bright


new future is the expulsion of the inconvenient old past. The people


who used to be here, living in warehouses, walking along the


marshes, cycling, fishing. They all had to make way, the whole


One of the consequences of the great Olympic development has been


the privatisation of public space and a huge growth in the apparatus


of security. We have created an area which has to be protected. So


this is the legacy that all the fuss has been about. A flat-pack


stadium, an Aquatic Centre at looks like a concrete factory, a gigantic


artwork and an enormous shopping mall. I don't think it is worth it.


I think back to that wonderful will do miss that was here before. Not a


waste land. -- wilderness. One of the most manifest, rich and


deserving parts of London, and I am sorry to lose it.


And Iain Sinclair is with us now. He painted a very poetic picture of


an area that others might have said you have romanticised and actually


it was wasteland and has now been put to better use. Being a romantic


does not disqualify you from being revolutionary. If you go back to


Wordsworth and William Blake, romanticism is just having an


enriched sense of the past and to honour the past and not to enforce


that amnesia upon it that way it's everything out to the glittering


better future. -- that wipes everything out. Are you a lone


voice? You described the number of people using the area. Locally


there is a huge support for what I say. The officials always used this


term "Waste Land" and say there was nothing there. One of the things


that was there is this list of compulsory purchases and it goes on


for page after page, hundreds and hundreds of names. That was what


was there. While we were waking that film, an old man with a dog


came to me and said, I don't know where I am, I grew up here, there


were eight different businesses where I took an apprenticeship. It


has all gone. But as you said, it is part of the decay of


industrialism and that is why perhaps it has gone. It has gone in


that sense. That world has passed and what was left was the


environment. Is that not a signal to move on? It was a signal that


this was a good territory to exploit because it was dying


industrial mixed with a rough country that nobody could see what


to do with. The awful thing is that it has been a mirror image of what


we think it is. In fact there were active boat clubs and sports


facilities, great chunks of Hackney Marshes have been turned into


concrete, there is a battle going on at the moment about a car park


taking over the marshes and a basketball court and they do not


want the tarmac there, but you have to have the tarmac for the cars.


not there, where would you have put the Olympic village? Paris.


Let's think of something within the UK! I would not have put it is.


Really we should not have gone for it. We should have learnt the


lesson of pickets lot. We got the World Athletics Championships a few


years before this and we had to give them back. We were going to


use it to exploit any we around the M25 and it did not make sense


economically so we abandoned it. Just to go back to where it is, do


you think there is a sense of regret that this Waste Land, will


do this, has gone forever? I have no regrets as well at all. It is a


wonderful iconoclastic view but it is Waste Land. Let's look at the


legacy. There are going to be 11,000 houses permanently created,


we desperately need those houses, low-cost accommodation with that,


as 10,000 jobs that will be permanently created as well. -- and


10,000 jobs. I think that is something the public will welcome.


Women look at these industrial and grimy canals -- when they look at.


They will say, this is a very good use of the land and something that


will benefit the public. We can't put it as housing because this is


extremely radioactive soil. 7500 tons of radioactive soil came out


under that stadium and is sitting in a disposal unit. This was an


area of land on dams, a small nuclear reactor... Which makes the


point, this has been a fantastic opportunity for the East End to


detoxify the area. But they can't do it! Newham Council have done a


fantastic job. They have already got 5,000 people into work, 2500


long-term unemployed, they have 300 social homes coming on, 300


affordable homes. I look at that as a mother and I want open space but


I want open space where I think my children would be safe to go into.


That isn't what it represented in terms of what you presented in your


film. You have to move on. I have been there 45 years, I have put my


children round and my grandchildren round and they have also right!


have had the final word, thank you. -- they have all thrived. Their due


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