11/06/2013 Daily Politics


11/06/2013

Jo Coburn has all the day's political news. With guest-of-the-day Lord Michael Dobbs, author of the House of Cards political drama.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 11/06/2013. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Daily Politics. The government says 16-year-olds should be sitting

:00:39.:00:43.

tougher GCSEs with less coursework and more end-of-year exams. So, is

:00:43.:00:47.

it back to the old O-levels? Should women inherit peerages even

:00:47.:00:51.

if they have older brothers? We'll meet the Conservative MP who thinks

:00:51.:00:54.

they should. Ann Widdecombe will be with us,

:00:54.:00:58.

looking back at her time in politics and on Strictly Come Dancing, as she

:00:58.:01:04.

publishes the book of her life. And, House of Cards gets the

:01:04.:01:13.

American treatment with Kevin Spacey.

:01:13.:01:22.

You might very well think that. I couldn't possibly comment.

:01:22.:01:26.

All that in the next hour. With us for the whole programme today is

:01:26.:01:29.

Lord Dobbs, the Conservative peer and the best-selling author of House

:01:29.:01:32.

of Cards. So, lots to look forward to. But first, Michael Dobbs, what

:01:32.:01:36.

do you make of the modern Tory Party?

:01:36.:01:42.

I am rather excited by it. They are going through a wonderful period.

:01:42.:01:48.

Those of us who can remember what mid-term is always like. We have

:01:48.:01:53.

lots of new ideas coming out, we will be discussing education today.

:01:53.:01:59.

Some serious issues, like Syria, one issue I get hot under the collar

:01:59.:02:04.

about. An economy which appears to be turning possibly.

:02:04.:02:14.
:02:14.:02:14.

Do not mention those green shoots. And the opposition in government...

:02:14.:02:19.

Did you have reservations at the beginning? Were you always a fan of

:02:19.:02:22.

David Cameron? I have always been a fan,

:02:22.:02:27.

personally. He once taught me how to use my credit card to scrape the ice

:02:27.:02:31.

from my windscreen. What about as leader of the party and Prime

:02:31.:02:35.

Minister? Look at the polls, he is still the

:02:35.:02:43.

most popular of the leaders. I remember, in the mid-19 80s. 356

:02:43.:02:47.

economists wrote to the Times, saying, Maggie Thatcher hasn't the

:02:47.:02:51.

slightest idea to run the economy. She got it right, they got it

:02:51.:02:55.

wrong. Leaders always come under pressure.

:02:55.:03:00.

Is he Thatcherite enough for you? I would like him to be leader of a

:03:00.:03:03.

Conservative government which he does not have the ability to do at

:03:03.:03:08.

the moment. I am plugging for a majority conservatives in the next

:03:08.:03:13.

government. What is your sense of the new intake

:03:13.:03:18.

of backbenchers and their relationship with him?

:03:18.:03:25.

It is quite fraught at times. On the other hand, everybody says that the

:03:25.:03:28.

new intake of backbenchers particularly the Conservatives, one

:03:28.:03:33.

of the best intakes of a generation. There is a lots of talent bubbling

:03:33.:03:38.

away wanting to get out. It causes problems for him. He is facing a

:03:38.:03:43.

reshuffle. How can he disappointed even more people? That is the stuff

:03:43.:03:50.

of leadership, the job he has to What should he do about the rise of

:03:50.:03:53.

UKIP? He should get on with the policy he

:03:53.:04:00.

set out, renegotiating that European deal, and fundamentally. I am

:04:00.:04:05.

sceptical about Europe. It is right he should give it the best possible

:04:05.:04:10.

shot of renegotiating that usually important deal. You don't think it

:04:10.:04:15.

is a lost cause? Absolutely not, it would undermine UKIP just like that.

:04:15.:04:18.

Now it's time for our daily quiz. Who has Communities Secretary Eric

:04:18.:04:22.

Pickles said that we mustn't upset? Is it: a) Liberal Democrats.

:04:22.:04:25.

B) Dustmen. C) Germans.

:04:25.:04:29.

Or d) Hedgehogs? At the end of the show, Michael will

:04:29.:04:35.

It's being dubbed the biggest exam shake-up in a generation, with

:04:35.:04:37.

Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, calling today for

:04:37.:04:43.

something more rigorous than the current system of GCSEs. There is a

:04:44.:04:47.

statement to the House of Commons in a few moments' time. But what

:04:47.:04:50.

changes are expected to take place, and how will the exam change

:04:50.:04:54.

practically? We know that the Department for Education will be

:04:54.:04:59.

consulting with Ofqual on a new grading system. The current A* to G

:04:59.:05:02.

system could be replaced with a mark between one to eight. Eight being

:05:03.:05:08.

the highest. Coursework will be largely abolished in favour of

:05:08.:05:14.

end-of-year exams. In English, pupils will be expected

:05:14.:05:18.

to read whole plays and not just sections of them.

:05:18.:05:21.

English will also see more poetry and the 19th century novel.

:05:21.:05:24.

Mathematics will see tougher algebra and more statistics.

:05:25.:05:27.

While foreign languages will require a better understanding of grammar

:05:27.:05:32.

and translations. The first course is expected to

:05:32.:05:38.

start in September 2015, with the first exams to be sat in 2017.

:05:38.:05:41.

And, despite previous talk of it being called an I-level, the new

:05:41.:05:47.

exam will still be called the GCSE. This was the Education Minister Liz

:05:47.:05:56.

Truss earlier today. What we are doing in the new GCSE is

:05:56.:06:02.

we want more long questions, more opportunity for students to think,

:06:02.:06:05.

more key numeracy and literacy skills so pupils are better prepared

:06:06.:06:09.

for the world of work. With us now is the former Schools

:06:09.:06:11.

Minister Nick Gibb. Labour's Shadow Schools Minister Kevin Brennan. And

:06:11.:06:16.

the General Secretary of the NUT, Christine Blower.

:06:16.:06:21.

Welcome to all of you. Nick Gibb, these sound like the O-levels I did.

:06:21.:06:27.

There is a similarity but this is an all ability exam. What they are

:06:27.:06:34.

designed to do, these reforms, is to equip school leavers with the

:06:34.:06:38.

ability to face the global job market in the future, with young

:06:38.:06:41.

people from very high performing countries like Finland, parts of

:06:41.:06:48.

China. If we want to equip our young people they need to be able to write

:06:48.:06:53.

essays, to apply their mathematical knowledge in an unpredictable way.

:06:53.:06:58.

And also to become fluent in mathematics. That is what these new

:06:58.:07:01.

exams are designed to achieve. And none of that was being tested or

:07:01.:07:07.

taught? They were piecemeal, bite sized

:07:07.:07:13.

exams. There was a culture of resits where people were entered for exam

:07:13.:07:18.

exam. Between the age of 15-17, we were the most examined nation in the

:07:18.:07:24.

world because of this culture. And controlled assessment absorbed

:07:24.:07:30.

teaching time in schools but not delivering actual education.

:07:30.:07:34.

One of the biggest criticisms is having an end of year exam was a

:07:34.:07:37.

linear way of testing the achievement and performance of

:07:37.:07:43.

pupils, hence the introduction of coursework. All that seems to happen

:07:43.:07:47.

is a hamster wheel of changes in education where one system is

:07:47.:07:52.

replaced by another, then it reverts to the original system.

:07:52.:07:57.

There is an ideological debate in education. Over two decades, this

:07:57.:08:00.

country has drifted down international league tables. This is

:08:00.:08:07.

a way of testing what children have learned. Children are used to taking

:08:07.:08:11.

exams at the end of the first three years so they shouldn't be under

:08:11.:08:15.

more stress if they have practised them by the time they come to year

:08:15.:08:20.

Do you accept the claim that the system and the performance of the

:08:20.:08:25.

country has drifted as a result of GCSEs based on coursework weather

:08:25.:08:30.

wasn't enough rigour, according to Nick Gibb?

:08:30.:08:36.

It is clear in recent years we have not improved our performance,

:08:36.:08:42.

according to OECD figures. The government has been criticised

:08:42.:08:49.

heavily of misinterpreting those statistics. This is Michael Gove

:08:49.:08:54.

with his fourth we sit at the exam question! First he wanted O-levels

:08:54.:09:02.

to come back, then we had about I levels. Now, we have what seem

:09:02.:09:07.

perhaps like O-levels but somehow for everybody. What is wrong with

:09:07.:09:12.

this reform is, instead of making a reasonable reform, there is a good

:09:12.:09:19.

case for reforms of GCSE. Because of the ideological battle which Nick

:09:19.:09:24.

admitted, rather than evidence -based changes, they have swept a

:09:24.:09:28.

lot of good things like coursework in some subjects which can be

:09:28.:09:32.

valuable. It is wrong to assess people solely on what they do in a

:09:32.:09:40.

two and a half hour exam at the end of two years. If there is a fault in

:09:40.:09:48.

assessment, let us not sweep it away for ideological reasons.

:09:48.:09:56.

Quoting one commentator, some countries are storming ahead. We are

:09:56.:10:02.

in a global race. We have fallen dramatically down the league tables.

:10:02.:10:06.

What is your view to these reforms from the teaching perspective? Is it

:10:06.:10:10.

something which will be welcomed if there is more rigour as the

:10:10.:10:15.

Conservatives are claiming? If, what has been child is what will be

:10:15.:10:20.

announced today, it won't generally be welcomed. What we mustn't do

:10:20.:10:24.

today is undermined and demean the things which young people hitherto

:10:24.:10:28.

have achieved. They have been working very hard these GCSEs and

:10:28.:10:33.

just because more people were able to pass them does not mean they were

:10:33.:10:37.

being dumbed down. Teachers are working hard, young people are

:10:37.:10:41.

working hard. To sweep away all coursework on the basis, yes, there

:10:41.:10:51.
:10:51.:10:53.

was a problem last year, but the Welsh government took the sensible

:10:53.:10:55.

decision they would regrade children so they actually got what they

:10:55.:10:59.

really deserved. In this country, we did not do that. Let us come back to

:10:59.:11:02.

the point teachers and pupils working very hard, do you challenge

:11:02.:11:08.

the assertion GCSEs have become too easy? With coursework, it was too

:11:08.:11:13.

piecemeal, somehow there wasn't a system recognised internationally or

:11:13.:11:18.

by businesses that our children in England weren't doing tough enough

:11:18.:11:23.

work in exams? I do challenge that. Also because of the work being done

:11:23.:11:30.

in Canada which has successful provinces. With so many students

:11:30.:11:36.

doing remarkably well over a period of years. Teachers got very good at

:11:36.:11:39.

teaching GCSEs. There is a discussion to be had about the

:11:39.:11:43.

balance between coursework and final exams. I am not saying there should

:11:43.:11:49.

never be a review of exams. The fact we are sweeping that away, we only

:11:49.:11:55.

have a final exam for every subject doesn't seem to treat this with the

:11:55.:11:58.

seriousness it deserves. Actually, we need to look at what is in the

:11:58.:12:04.

syllabus and how best to examine These changes would be coming in, in

:12:04.:12:09.

England. One of the points raised by the Education Select Committee is

:12:09.:12:14.

the worry, fear and regrets about having three different systems for

:12:14.:12:20.

England, Northern Ireland and Wales, how can that be a good thing? It is

:12:20.:12:24.

a consequence of devolution. It is a bad thing if Wales does not accept

:12:24.:12:30.

it means to do something about GCSEs. It is falling down the league

:12:30.:12:36.

tables even faster than this country. Michael Gove has given up

:12:36.:12:40.

too easily on having an exam in England, Wales and Northern Ireland,

:12:40.:12:47.

to be sat by all. Just because there is some disagreement, he says, I am

:12:47.:12:52.

cutting away from the rest of the UK. Extremely petulant and a

:12:52.:12:57.

divisive thing to do. Why not seriously have discussions about how

:12:57.:13:01.

best to keep a GCSE across the country 's even if Wales wants to

:13:02.:13:06.

keep it more modular than England. Is it a good thing to sweep away

:13:06.:13:12.

everything that has gone before, in terms of GCSEs and coursework? For a

:13:12.:13:17.

single exam which would fit in with other parts of the United Kingdom?

:13:17.:13:27.
:13:27.:13:30.

My son last year had to go through and enjoy the GCSE fiasco. I do not

:13:30.:13:35.

get the complacency. He had a lot of coursework which was entirely

:13:35.:13:40.

unnecessary. I do get a problem, I do have a problem with all of these

:13:40.:13:44.

systems being run for the teachers, the ministers to be able to say,

:13:44.:13:48.

look how we are going up the league table, which is what Labour did a

:13:48.:13:53.

year after year, promising education, education, education. It

:13:54.:13:58.

did not deliver. We needed a new way to look at things. I, as a parent,

:13:58.:14:04.

find it very difficult when I see teaching trade unions whose slogans

:14:04.:14:11.

are, putting teachers first. As a parent... That is not a slogan of

:14:11.:14:15.

our union. Teachers should be putting pupils first, not

:14:15.:14:21.

themselves. Teachers should be putting education first so we have a

:14:21.:14:25.

service working very well come to make sure what we have is educated

:14:25.:14:28.

citizens who come through the service and who have something

:14:28.:14:34.

worthwhile. The issue is not what is best teachers but what is best for

:14:34.:14:39.

the education service. To simply say a linear exam at the end of two

:14:39.:14:45.

years is best for everyone in all circumstances is not answer. What is

:14:45.:14:50.

best for pupils. Is a single exam the best way? I think they will be

:14:50.:14:56.

making progress. I despair of teachers because politicians have

:14:56.:15:00.

changed the system time after time. Not all parents with a Greek

:15:00.:15:04.

sweeping away coursework is a good thing. Many parents will be

:15:04.:15:10.

concerned their children will only be tested on how they perform after

:15:10.:15:16.

two years without there being any leeway for the work they have done.

:15:16.:15:21.

A Labour government, would it reversed these changes? We haven't

:15:21.:15:29.

had a good look at the AF changes. On GCSEs, we will have to look. We

:15:29.:15:34.

don't want to reverse things. This is a consultation. We will look

:15:34.:15:44.
:15:44.:15:52.

carefully at the detail. It has been There is disagreement in the best

:15:52.:15:57.

way to test people's. You are talking about competition on a

:15:57.:16:06.

global stage. Are you obsessed with international league tables? It may

:16:06.:16:12.

not be preparing pupils for the job market. Will doing more poetry and

:16:12.:16:16.

having an exam - will it help young people get better jobs at the end

:16:16.:16:23.

of it? The CBI says 42% of its membership are concerned about the

:16:23.:16:27.

skills of school leavers and graduates coming into firms. It is

:16:27.:16:31.

about improving essay writing skills and making sure young people

:16:31.:16:36.

can understand how the mass applies to problems. At the moment, with

:16:37.:16:42.

GCSE maths, it is very clear which formula to apply. We want there to

:16:42.:16:47.

be a problem where they have to work out which maths applies to it.

:16:47.:16:51.

It will equip young people very well for the international jobs

:16:51.:16:56.

market. Combine that the changes we are making to be competing exam,

:16:56.:17:00.

Syrian people will learn about programming and not simply using a

:17:00.:17:06.

spreadsheet. Some of that I am very happy to support. We will support

:17:06.:17:10.

the IT changes. In fact, the CBI this morning has said these changes

:17:10.:17:17.

will not do what it was said they would do. What they have suggested

:17:17.:17:23.

is we need to look much more about what the role of high-stakes exams

:17:23.:17:27.

at 16 is in a world where the participation what everyone that

:17:27.:17:33.

has been raised to 18. It is no longer a school leaving point. The

:17:33.:17:37.

need to reach a consensus about the best way forward and pilot it

:17:38.:17:45.

properly. No exam form ever works unless you try it out first.

:17:45.:17:51.

will the teachers cope with the changes? Is it enough time? Is it

:17:51.:17:56.

practical to change the system that automatically? There is a great

:17:56.:18:00.

deal of change being proposed in that time frame and nothing in the

:18:00.:18:04.

way of a pilot. Talking Rugby increasing participation and age,

:18:04.:18:10.

that is very significant. -- talking about the increasing

:18:10.:18:16.

participation age. Which will one young people to remain in education

:18:16.:18:21.

for longer than 16. -- we all want. We did think there is a problem

:18:21.:18:26.

with this. We agreed that any government should consult with the

:18:26.:18:30.

profession and look at having the very best exam system we can have.

:18:30.:18:34.

We do not believe that what is likely to come out today is tending

:18:34.:18:39.

in that direction. Now, a new book, The Body Economic: Why Austerity

:18:39.:18:42.

Kills, argues that across the world there is clear evidence austerity

:18:42.:18:45.

measures introduced in response to the financial crisis have harmed

:18:45.:18:53.

our physical and mental health. According to research by the book's

:18:53.:18:55.

authors, David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu, there was an increase of

:18:55.:18:57.

4,750 suicides above the statistical trend during the

:18:57.:19:00.

recession in America, and around 1,000 extra suicides in the UK in

:19:00.:19:10.
:19:10.:19:14.

And for each suicide case, there are an estimated ten attempts and

:19:14.:19:20.

up to 1,000 extra cases of depression. The authors argue that

:19:20.:19:24.

the effect of austerity measures in the UK since 2010 is evident in

:19:24.:19:30.

homelessness rates. They say 10,000 families have been made homeless.

:19:30.:19:37.

But the most extreme examples they give concern Greece. They argue

:19:37.:19:40.

cuts in HIV-prevention budgets have coincided with a 200% increase in

:19:40.:19:43.

the virus in Greece, driven by a sharp rise in intravenous drug use

:19:43.:19:48.

by unemployed young people. The authors contrast Greece with

:19:48.:19:50.

Iceland, which saw a collapse of its banking system but protected

:19:50.:19:56.

social spending. And they say that not only are anti-austerity

:19:56.:19:59.

measures good for the health of a nation, but actually good for its

:19:59.:20:02.

economy, pointing to Iceland's growth of 3% in 2012 compared to

:20:02.:20:11.

0.2% in UK. I'm now joined by one of the authors of The Body Economic,

:20:11.:20:13.

David Stuckler, and the Director General of the Institute of

:20:13.:20:23.

Economic Affairs, Mark Littlewood. Where does the UK fit into the

:20:23.:20:32.

crease, Iceland spectrum? We have been looking at how economic

:20:32.:20:37.

hardship and unemployment and poverty come decked, poses risks to

:20:37.:20:41.

health. When politicians respond with deep cuts, that can be turned

:20:41.:20:51.
:20:51.:20:51.

into epidemics. Receipt early- warning signs come such as a rise

:20:51.:20:59.

in suicides. -- receipt early warning signs, such as a rise in

:20:59.:21:03.

suicides. Is it your contention that austerity measures undertaken

:21:03.:21:08.

by the coalition government have actually killed people? What we are

:21:08.:21:13.

seeing in cases such as Greece, effective prevention programmes

:21:13.:21:19.

have been slashed and leading to a return of malaria has prevention

:21:19.:21:23.

programmes were cut and HIV programmes slashed? In the UK, we

:21:24.:21:28.

have seen cases where there has been an increase in homelessness

:21:28.:21:34.

rates, coinciding with cuts to social housing budgets. We have

:21:34.:21:39.

heard recently that has caught some people to end their lives rather

:21:39.:21:45.

than leave homes they have been living in for 20 years. It is eight

:21:45.:21:49.

too high a price to pay for individual well-being. I'm sure he

:21:49.:21:52.

is right. If we could find a mechanism where we could ever live

:21:52.:21:56.

beyond our means, we would be happier and healthier. We could

:21:56.:22:00.

build many more hospitals, if we were willing to add even more to

:22:00.:22:05.

the budget deficit of �123 billion a year. It is very difficult to say

:22:05.:22:11.

whether austerity works. In United Kingdom, it has not been tried. We

:22:11.:22:15.

are adding �600 billion to the national debt to the cause of this

:22:15.:22:19.

Parliament. �10,000 for every man, woman and child will be spent by

:22:19.:22:25.

George Osborne. Where we have seen what is sometimes described as

:22:25.:22:33.

austerity, it is in fact fairly substantial spending and it has

:22:33.:22:39.

been pitiful. Growth has been flatlining. Spending vast sums of

:22:39.:22:44.

money we do not have does not seem to be doing the trick. What you say

:22:44.:22:54.
:22:54.:22:57.

to that? It is crystal clear that the punches with the deepest cuts -

:22:57.:23:06.

- be can choose with the deepest cuts, have had the best recovery.

:23:06.:23:15.

The UK economy has flat lined. has been very similar in the UK and

:23:15.:23:22.

the US. What you mean by posterity? Are you talking about cutting

:23:22.:23:32.
:23:32.:23:32.

government spending? -- what do you Mistakes were made in the lead-up

:23:32.:23:38.

to the crisis. You must save him the good times and spend in the bad.

:23:38.:23:44.

One example comes from collective history. In the post war period,

:23:44.:23:53.

the Government founded the welfare state. It did not break the bank.

:23:53.:23:59.

The debt fell by half. Virtually every Western country has suffered

:23:59.:24:02.

because of the financial crash. There are enormous differences

:24:02.:24:07.

between the position we found ourselves in after World War II.

:24:07.:24:12.

Getting itself heavily in debt to defeat not season seems a price

:24:12.:24:22.
:24:22.:24:25.

worth paying and it was sensible to do. -- Naziism. In Iceland, the

:24:25.:24:32.

banking crisis was a huge one-off job. Underlying Iceland was a

:24:32.:24:39.

stable situation. Underline Greece was a nightmare. A wise man once

:24:39.:24:43.

said, when the tide goes out, you see who is women with no clothes on.

:24:43.:24:49.

The Greeks had no clothes on and the Icelandic were not. There is no

:24:49.:24:54.

comparison between Greece and Iceland. Iceland has its own

:24:54.:24:58.

currency and Greece does not. Greece were denied the tools it

:24:58.:25:02.

needed. Do you accept that the arguments over whether austerity is

:25:03.:25:08.

the right policy to pursue - do you accept that cuts in public spending

:25:08.:25:14.

to result in reducing the well- being of the country's individuals?

:25:14.:25:19.

In Greece, where there have been extreme cuts, it has resulted in an

:25:19.:25:23.

increase in suicides and depression and this has happened albeit to a

:25:23.:25:32.

lesser extent. It depends what companies the Kurds. I am in favour

:25:32.:25:42.
:25:42.:25:43.

of the government taxing a lot less. -- the Kurds. We must not spend

:25:43.:25:48.

more year on year than we bringing in tax receipts. That is dangerous

:25:48.:25:53.

and immoral. We are spending on ourselves today, our health care

:25:53.:25:56.

and social security costs and sending the bill to our

:25:56.:26:01.

grandchildren to pick up. Doesn't that Ben result in a situation you

:26:01.:26:08.

are describing - economic collapse? -- the end result. It is about

:26:08.:26:17.

illogical argument and sound data. -- ideological argument. The fiscal

:26:17.:26:22.

multiply, the effect on government spending on health is changing. We

:26:23.:26:32.
:26:33.:26:33.

have one of the biggest Malta pliers. -- multipliers. If it were

:26:33.:26:39.

the drugs trial, it would have been discontinued. Now with the

:26:39.:26:48.

epidemics in Greece, it will cost more. I hear what you're saying

:26:48.:26:52.

about Greece but I think you are confusing the difference between a

:26:52.:26:57.

bit of surgery, which is often necessary, and total amputation.

:26:57.:27:02.

Total amputation is life-changing. You think it has been wrong in

:27:02.:27:11.

Greece. It has been a nightmare. Almost criminal. The UK has a

:27:11.:27:16.

political choice in how to respond. Posterity has not stimulated

:27:16.:27:26.
:27:26.:27:27.

recovery. It is causing harm. -- austerity has not stimulated

:27:27.:27:32.

recovery. A generation has been left behind. About the cats being

:27:32.:27:42.
:27:42.:27:42.

in the wrong place, what about the amount the work and pentathlons --

:27:42.:27:52.

work and pensions paid? With the cats, the deficits continued to

:27:52.:28:02.
:28:02.:28:03.

They are trying to stamp out fraud. We are looking at about 1% per

:28:03.:28:06.

annum. George Osborne thinks we should spend �600 billion of money

:28:06.:28:10.

we do not have over the course of this Parliament. Do you think

:28:10.:28:16.

things will get better if we spend 700, �800 billion that we do not

:28:16.:28:21.

have? I do not understand where the limits on that come from. It all

:28:21.:28:25.

sounds a bit Downton Abbey. But a real political battle is starting

:28:25.:28:27.

up over whether aristocratic daughters should have the same

:28:27.:28:30.

rights as sons when it comes to inheriting the estate. Mary Macleod

:28:30.:28:33.

worked for the Queen before becoming a Conservative MP. She's

:28:33.:28:36.

calling for a new law to scrap rules which state that younger

:28:36.:28:39.

brothers are given automatic preference over older sisters. In a

:28:39.:28:49.
:28:49.:29:15.

moment, we'll talk to Mary. But, Viewers of Downton Abbey may

:29:15.:29:19.

remember the story of the Earl of Grantham who cannot leave his

:29:19.:29:24.

estate and title to his eldest daughter. Some may think it is

:29:24.:29:28.

depicting a quaint and historic era but that is still the situation

:29:28.:29:37.

today. The time is right to do something about it. Currently, in

:29:37.:29:43.

most hereditary peerages, there is no preference cognitive

:29:43.:29:48.

primogeniture. That means the first born son will inherit the title and

:29:48.:29:54.

the state. Give them are no more sons, the title could go to someone

:29:54.:29:59.

who does not even live in Great Britain. The aristocracy is now

:29:59.:30:03.

well behind the monarchy on this issue. The Queen was able to

:30:03.:30:07.

inherit the throne in the absence of a brother. If the Duke and

:30:07.:30:12.

Duchess of Cambridge have a bail, she will be able to be Queen

:30:12.:30:22.
:30:22.:30:33.

evening she has a younger brother. integral role in our country and we

:30:33.:30:35.

want everyone to fulfil their potential.

:30:35.:30:37.

That beautiful building was the National Trust's Ham House, in

:30:37.:30:47.
:30:47.:30:49.

Surrey. Mary Macleod is with us now. And with her is Charles Mosley, the

:30:49.:30:52.

former editor-in-chief of Burke's Peerage. What you make of that

:30:52.:30:59.

suggestion? It is bogus league egalitarian,

:30:59.:31:04.

trying to slot an interest group, the females, into a privilege which

:31:04.:31:07.

is currently the privilege of another interest group, the males.

:31:07.:31:13.

There is nothing wrong with that provided you say that is what it is.

:31:13.:31:17.

Are you being dishonest, Mary Macleod? That is the most outrageous

:31:17.:31:24.

thing I have heard. We make up half the population and it seems

:31:24.:31:27.

ridiculous in the 21st-century we do not value women as much as we do

:31:27.:31:34.

men. Don't you value women as much as men? I have been married twice,

:31:34.:31:40.

if that isn't an example. We will let that be a measure for you.

:31:40.:31:45.

the aristocracy, daughters of the nobility get better treatment

:31:45.:31:55.
:31:55.:31:55.

whereas the younger sons do not. you saying this bill does not cover

:31:55.:31:59.

enough of the complexity of what happens in terms of aristocracy and

:31:59.:32:09.

titles. Excellently put, it doesn't cover the issue of baronet who

:32:09.:32:14.

outnumber the peers. Surely this suggestion is a good start. If she

:32:14.:32:22.

wants to make women, give them a leg up in terms of title, she should go

:32:22.:32:26.

for the bigger group of baronet. would be happy to include the

:32:26.:32:33.

baronet within that as well. This is not a leg up but fairness and

:32:33.:32:42.

equality. I feel, nowadays, when you have more than 50% of girls

:32:42.:32:48.

graduating from university, and doing better at schools, let us have

:32:49.:32:53.

equality, saying it is the first born who inherited it is. Society

:32:53.:32:59.

has moved on. If the monarchy can do it, the Queen is way ahead by

:32:59.:33:05.

allowing the Crown succession bill to go through. It is out of touch

:33:05.:33:11.

discrimination and you are backing it. My objection is the poor old

:33:11.:33:16.

younger sons and daughters get the short end of the stick, age

:33:16.:33:22.

discrimination is just as wicked. But surely you are using that as an

:33:22.:33:31.

excuse to mask what is an equal and unfair. Life is unequal and unfair.

:33:31.:33:39.

Ladies should angle also for peerages then. Michael Dobson?

:33:39.:33:45.

conservative, did I mention that? You are welcome to mention it again.

:33:45.:33:53.

At the heart of that is not equality, equal opportunity, you

:33:53.:33:58.

cannot discriminate against people. If you have a hereditary system, I

:33:58.:34:05.

think it is impossible nowadays to justify it, to have only one sex and

:34:05.:34:10.

not the other. There are real practical problems. If you have

:34:10.:34:16.

brought up your family, your daughters and sons, to say when I

:34:16.:34:20.

die, this is how it is going to be, the life they have become accustomed

:34:20.:34:27.

to come it is difficult to change it. There are practical problems. In

:34:27.:34:35.

principle it must surely change in the 21st-century. This affects only

:34:35.:34:40.

if you people but symbolically it is something we need to address. It is

:34:40.:34:47.

saying nowadays we should have men and women with equal opportunity to

:34:47.:34:57.
:34:57.:34:58.

succeed, and at work. Or abolish hereditary peers, all of them.

:34:58.:35:03.

peerages to the whole population. Make every female a duchess, every

:35:03.:35:08.

mail a duke. You are using the Gallup Terry and argument in a bogus

:35:08.:35:12.

way to try to prevent something which appears to be fairly natural

:35:12.:35:17.

and inoffensive. Equality is the most pernicious inheritors of the

:35:17.:35:21.

French Revolution. In practice, it inhibits freedom and the liberty

:35:21.:35:27.

which is its brother. We are talking equal opportunity rather than

:35:27.:35:33.

equality. Where do you start your opportunity? Whether you are black,

:35:33.:35:39.

white, gay or straight, a man or a woman. That is where you start, at

:35:39.:35:43.

birth. What about the practical difficulties raised by Michael

:35:43.:35:47.

Dobson, being raised to expect a title, then all of that is taken

:35:47.:35:55.

away with you -- from you. There are ways to open the bill to make it

:35:55.:35:58.

voluntary for this generation. Then it would change for the next

:35:58.:36:08.
:36:08.:36:08.

generation. To make it easier in transition. You will find the

:36:08.:36:12.

majority of peers will support this, they feel it is time for

:36:12.:36:17.

change and we should not discriminate. It is not just titles,

:36:17.:36:21.

but complex property laws. There is an expectation as you said if you

:36:21.:36:27.

have been brought up to inherit an estate and it is taken away.

:36:27.:36:31.

Wouldn't that every -- wouldn't that happen every time you make a new

:36:31.:36:39.

law. The principle has to be clear. Whether we get there right now or

:36:39.:36:43.

whether we phase it in is an issue we should discuss. If the bill going

:36:43.:36:51.

to get anywhere? Private members bills don't often get anywhere. But

:36:51.:36:57.

actually not. It is something we can fight for behind the scenes. It is

:36:57.:37:03.

something I feel personally about strongly. It is something I can try

:37:03.:37:09.

to persuade as many people as possible to support. But not you?

:37:09.:37:13.

Not me. I can give you technical advice but purely on a business

:37:13.:37:19.

basis. She has been a government minister,

:37:20.:37:22.

a novelist, and a celebrity ballroom dancer. She has tangled with Michael

:37:22.:37:26.

Howard, and tangoed with Craig Revel Horwood. The Daily Telegraph's

:37:26.:37:31.

expenses investigators described her as a "saint" among members. But that

:37:31.:37:34.

didn't stop her starring with the baddies in an episode of Doctor Who.

:37:34.:37:39.

I wonder what Ann Widdecombe found to write about in her new book? In a

:37:39.:37:49.
:37:49.:38:01.

moment, we'll ask her. But, first, What does something of the night

:38:01.:38:05.

mean? I don't think I will elaborate on that.

:38:05.:38:09.

He has formally proposed a policeman should approach a junk and blog and

:38:09.:38:19.
:38:19.:38:36.

demand a �100 fine. Correction-macro published the story of her life:

:38:36.:38:46.
:38:46.:38:48.

Strictly Ann. The book starts with your early life

:38:48.:38:54.

in Singapore. Very sheltered, no TV, no sex education, nobody got

:38:54.:38:58.

divorced. How much of your later political beliefs were forged in

:38:58.:39:05.

those early years? I think very few people find their

:39:05.:39:10.

political beliefs based on their life experience. The reason I chose

:39:10.:39:14.

conservatism over socialism was precisely because I believed in the

:39:14.:39:20.

individual over the state. And I hated what in those days wasn't some

:39:20.:39:26.

muddle about the tone -- centre ground, it was out and out

:39:26.:39:31.

socialism. You never dabbled in any ideas of socialism? I was never

:39:31.:39:36.

attracted by it, I always believed in the individual right to grow.

:39:36.:39:40.

What about religion in terms of affecting your political life, it is

:39:40.:39:48.

a huge part of the book. The parable of the good Samaritan, he was a

:39:48.:39:54.

businessman, a successful guy. He put it at the disposal of the man

:39:54.:39:59.

who needed it. You complain about the lack of Scripture in schools,

:39:59.:40:04.

you oppose women priests. How did it affect your political career, in

:40:04.:40:10.

terms of the ministerial jobs you did and didn't get? I was pensions

:40:10.:40:14.

minister and prisons minister, highly complex posts. I can't say

:40:14.:40:18.

that influenced any of them. Would becoming Health Secretary have been

:40:18.:40:27.

difficult? I could not have taken on the role of licensing abortion

:40:27.:40:33.

clinics, so I would have had a difficulty with that.

:40:33.:40:40.

You wanted to be a politician all your adult life. That is right, I

:40:40.:40:43.

developed political ambitions very early, but did not get into

:40:43.:40:51.

parliament until I was 39. What did you do before? I began by marketing

:40:51.:40:56.

with Unilever. I went to London University where I looked after

:40:56.:41:01.

buildings and medical equipment. there too many special advisers when

:41:01.:41:05.

in Westminster? I wouldn't say there are too many now. But if the trend

:41:05.:41:11.

were to grow, my answer would be yes. When you have ministers who are

:41:11.:41:15.

themselves special advisers and little in between being advised by

:41:15.:41:18.

special advisers who have come straight from the research

:41:18.:41:24.

departments of their party HQ, you have a problem.

:41:24.:41:31.

Having been an MP... Constituency selection panels will look at

:41:31.:41:36.

anybody up to the age of 45 but it would be a healthier system if they

:41:36.:41:41.

said we will not look at anybody below the age of 45. By that age,

:41:41.:41:47.

you have experience, and outside world. You have some independence.

:41:47.:41:53.

What is very important for MPs is to be independent to themselves.

:41:53.:41:57.

said you admired the young new intake. Surely that is a good

:41:57.:42:04.

thing, not full of old fuddy-duddies. Winston Churchill

:42:04.:42:10.

became an MP at the great age of 20. There are exceptions to every rule.

:42:10.:42:13.

We are talking about a balance which has shifted nowadays to the younger

:42:13.:42:23.
:42:23.:42:28.

generation. Where do you stand in terms of the leadership? The MPs

:42:28.:42:31.

reduced the list to two people and I knew I simply didn't have sufficient

:42:31.:42:38.

support. I did have some. I suspect, if you ask people about Ann

:42:38.:42:44.

Widdecombe, they would remember the something of the night description,

:42:44.:42:48.

and Strictly Come Dancing. With that oppress you? That would not depress

:42:48.:42:58.
:42:58.:43:03.

me at all. I had to address it for the first time for the sake of the

:43:03.:43:11.

book. Margaret Thatcher, she would never have won the next election in

:43:11.:43:17.

1992. Undeniably, we secured ourselves that election. I would say

:43:17.:43:27.

ideally I wish we had lost 1992. Would you have like to see Ann

:43:27.:43:32.

Widdecombe stand for the election? do not think she would have won. The

:43:32.:43:35.

Tory party is strange. We elect leaders not because of who they are

:43:36.:43:41.

but because of who they are not. Maggie was not Ted Heath. We made

:43:41.:43:46.

sure we would not elect Ken Clarke or Michael Heseltine. Which is why

:43:46.:43:52.

we have had the range of leaders we have had. It would be good to vote

:43:52.:43:59.

for candidates positively. Wasn't John Major the perfect antidote to

:43:59.:44:04.

Maggie Thatcher? He was a very underestimated Prime Minister. The

:44:04.:44:08.

problem was everyone expected him to do what Thatcher was doing without

:44:08.:44:13.

the majority. At one point, no majority at all. You are saying you

:44:13.:44:20.

would rather have lost the 1992 election? We had to go through the

:44:20.:44:23.

ERM disaster which damaged us irrevocably. If Labour had gone

:44:23.:44:28.

through that it would have damaged them. Do you agree with that?

:44:28.:44:34.

wrong to win the 1992 election? was a point put to me before the

:44:34.:44:41.

1992 election campaign. Seeing the future and not liking it. As a

:44:41.:44:46.

political activist and a personal friend of John Major, I could not

:44:46.:44:51.

support that. I have to say the historians will look at it and say,

:44:51.:44:55.

it did change the course of British politics, not necessarily in the way

:44:55.:45:01.

the Conservatives wanted. Before the election, I would have said we

:45:01.:45:07.

wanted to win, I was euphoric when we won. I desperately wanted to win

:45:07.:45:17.
:45:17.:45:28.

What we your tactics on Strictly? Just having fun. Would you ever do

:45:28.:45:36.

that? Maybe you have been asked. wife said she would shoot me be for

:45:36.:45:41.

ever letting me go on to that programme. There are many gorgeous

:45:41.:45:49.

women on there. I do not have the moral rigour that Ann Widdecombe

:45:49.:45:56.

has. There are worse things you can do. There is the book. Are the

:45:56.:45:58.

Government monitoring your e-mails, Facebook and Google searches? Well,

:45:58.:46:00.

quite possibly but, according to William Hague, the data-gathering

:46:00.:46:04.

centre GCHQ are not doing it illegally. The Foreign Secretary

:46:04.:46:07.

gave a statement to MPs yesterday in which he denied UK spies were

:46:07.:46:11.

using their partnership with the United States to get around UK law.

:46:11.:46:21.
:46:21.:46:25.

It has been suggested that GCHQ uses our partnership with the

:46:25.:46:29.

United States to get around UK law, obtaining information they cannot

:46:29.:46:34.

legally obtained in the United Kingdom. I wish to be clear this

:46:34.:46:38.

accusation is baseless. Any data obtained by us from the United

:46:38.:46:43.

States involving UK nationals is subject to proper UK statutory

:46:44.:46:48.

controls and safeguards. They quote back the words of that Foreign

:46:48.:46:51.

Secretary in a BBC interview yesterday when he stated, if you

:46:52.:46:55.

are a law-abiding citizen of this country going about your business

:46:55.:46:59.

and your personal life, you have nothing to fear. Nothing to fear

:46:59.:47:02.

about the British state or intelligence agencies listening to

:47:02.:47:08.

the contents of your phone calls or anything like that. This assertion

:47:08.:47:14.

however assumes that the state is either incapable of error or

:47:14.:47:19.

incapable of advert and or inadvertent wrongdoing. On the

:47:19.:47:23.

point of sharing intelligence by the G C H Q, Camber find sexy

:47:23.:47:32.

clarify where the United Kingdom provides occasional intelligence --

:47:32.:47:37.

can the Secretary of State clarify whether of the United Kingdom

:47:37.:47:45.

provides occasional intelligence? cannot comment. How does the United

:47:45.:47:49.

States used materials gathered from network and service providers and

:47:49.:47:55.

offer it rather than having sought from them in a way that makes

:47:55.:48:00.

authorisation extremely difficult? I am so sorry, Mr Speaker, I was

:48:01.:48:07.

getting up to leave the chamber. are sorry the honourable lady is

:48:07.:48:13.

taking Halle that we will hear from her on other occasions. -- her

:48:13.:48:20.

leave but we will hear from her. Joining me is an Taylor. Just

:48:20.:48:26.

before I come to you, can politicians and spy agencies be

:48:26.:48:33.

entrusted not to misuse our personal data? The problems with

:48:33.:48:40.

the whole Iraq war showed that the intelligence agencies have to be

:48:40.:48:44.

willing to answer questions. We cannot give them a blank cheque to

:48:44.:48:49.

go and do as they, in their own view, feels they are doing.

:48:49.:48:56.

they being given a blank cheque? Technology is advancing beyond all

:48:56.:49:00.

of the political normals and operational regulations we give

:49:00.:49:05.

them. That is a constant battle to keep up-to-date. What do you think

:49:05.:49:10.

about the whistle Blower? Is a hero has he harmed the cause of national

:49:10.:49:16.

security? Probably a bit of both. We need to get a sense of

:49:16.:49:21.

perspective. There is a balance to be struck between privacy and

:49:21.:49:27.

security. The agencies, as far as we have no, have kept within the

:49:27.:49:31.

law. They cannot have a blank cheque. Commissioners look at

:49:31.:49:39.

warrant issued. They can go into a great deal of depth. Part of the

:49:39.:49:49.
:49:49.:49:50.

problem is that we hype these things up. We say every individual

:49:50.:49:55.

is threatened. Collecting and analysing intelligence and using it

:49:55.:50:00.

properly is very difficult. There is a massive amount of information.

:50:00.:50:05.

It is honing in on the things that are relevant. I think we need co-

:50:05.:50:10.

operation with other countries. You need checks and balances. What

:50:10.:50:13.

Michael says is correct. Part of the real problem is keeping ahead

:50:13.:50:17.

of the game from those who want to do us harm and coping with the

:50:17.:50:22.

changes in technology and information that is out there.

:50:22.:50:26.

you worry about foreign spy agencies trawling through data?

:50:26.:50:30.

course. We all need to be concerned about that and have firewalls

:50:30.:50:33.

wherever possible. That does not mean you do not co-operate with

:50:33.:50:39.

other people. The point that David Blunkett raised, in your clip, is

:50:39.:50:45.

the most significant. If we are offered intelligence about British

:50:45.:50:49.

nationals, by a third party, then how do authorisations actually

:50:49.:50:54.

apply? That shows you how you have got to keep changing things in

:50:54.:51:00.

order to keep up-to-date? In terms of individuals, our supermarkets -

:51:00.:51:04.

hour credit card agencies - have far more information on us than

:51:04.:51:10.

anyone else? Haven't we just given up our right to privacy because of

:51:10.:51:14.

Facebook and all of these sites where people are handing over their

:51:14.:51:19.

personal details, financial, private? Why be surprised when spy

:51:19.:51:24.

agencies are trawling through a data? We are all told them up risks

:51:24.:51:33.

on the internet. Both of us -- most of us use the internet in a shallow

:51:33.:51:40.

way and do not take provisions that we should use. There is a balance.

:51:40.:51:47.

The balance I would suggest witches from time to time. Just supposing

:51:47.:51:57.
:51:57.:52:01.

tomorrow, there was another nine/11. -- 9/11. In which, it was said, why

:52:02.:52:09.

I went the agencies following these guys? -- in Woolwich. Now people

:52:09.:52:13.

complain that somebody might be looking at somebody. We need checks

:52:13.:52:17.

and balances but we cannot stop the agencies from doing their jobs

:52:17.:52:21.

because that is protecting us. Intelligence agencies and the

:52:21.:52:25.

regulator must not be run by headline writers on newspapers who

:52:25.:52:29.

will see the worst in everything and will demand that life is

:52:29.:52:36.

perfect. Life very rarely is perfect. Let's talk about scrutiny.

:52:36.:52:43.

You have said they need to be laws governing privacy. Is the committee

:52:43.:52:49.

of MPs really equipped to scrutinise organisations like GCHQ?

:52:49.:52:54.

Yes, organisations like GCHQ and MI5 and MI6 have had to come to

:52:54.:53:00.

terms with the bat they have got a responsibility to Parliament. --

:53:01.:53:06.

with the fact. It was said that beforehand they would hardly give

:53:06.:53:12.

their name and number. That approach has gone. I think the

:53:12.:53:14.

Intelligence and Security Committee has become more proactive and far

:53:14.:53:20.

more able to keep the agencies on their toes. Now for the dark arts

:53:20.:53:23.

of politics. And our guest today, Michael Dobbs, has seen plenty of

:53:23.:53:27.

that. He was with Margaret Thatcher when she took her first steps into

:53:27.:53:30.

Downing Street as Prime Minister. He was there again with John Major

:53:30.:53:33.

when he was kicked out. In between he got bombed in Brighton and

:53:33.:53:36.

banished from Chequers after a row with Maggie. He ran plenty of

:53:36.:53:44.

election campaigns and cracked any number of heads together. It was

:53:44.:53:46.

one of those behind-the-scenes political careers that, it was once

:53:46.:53:52.

said, in Latin America would have got him shot. And in a quiet moment

:53:52.:53:55.

on holiday by the swimming pool, he thought he would have a go at

:53:56.:53:58.

putting all that experience into a novel. The result was House of

:53:59.:54:02.

Cards. It was a great success, it got turned into a memorable TV

:54:02.:54:04.

series and it has recently been remade by Kevin Spacey and

:54:05.:54:14.
:54:15.:54:21.

Garrett Walker, to ride like him? No. Do I believe in him? That is

:54:21.:54:28.

beside the point. -- Dubai like him? Look at that winning smile and

:54:28.:54:35.

trusting eyes. After 22 years in Congress, I can smell the way the

:54:35.:54:39.

wind is blowing. It is now out on DVD. Ann Taylor, a former chief

:54:39.:54:45.

whip, of course, is still with us. The brutality of politics. Is it

:54:45.:54:52.

still as dirty today as it was in your day? I think just banned in

:54:52.:54:59.

many ways. Anne macro was a whip in the extraordinary days of the

:54:59.:55:06.

collapse of the James Callaghan government. Heady days!With all

:55:06.:55:10.

these allegations of sleaze, it is worth reminding ourselves that

:55:10.:55:15.

Labour MPs and Tories put their lives at risk. They got out of

:55:15.:55:19.

their sick beds and came to vote for what they believed in. But

:55:19.:55:24.

ignited Jimmy a passion for politics and the values of politics.

:55:24.:55:32.

-- that ignited in me a passion. The heady days, you say, of the

:55:32.:55:36.

1970s and having to get people to turn up for votes otherwise the

:55:36.:55:41.

Government may have collapsed. Later on, during the 80s and 90s,

:55:41.:55:49.

do you think the dark arts - the spin - what has been ducked with

:55:49.:55:53.

Lord Mandelson being the Prince of darkness, did that takeover? I do

:55:53.:55:57.

not think he ever got near the Whips Office. We would not let him

:55:57.:56:02.

and he would not take any notice anyway. That did not matter.

:56:02.:56:08.

Politics has changed. It was a team event, a team-building exercise all

:56:08.:56:13.

the time in those days. You felt you were part of something. One

:56:13.:56:17.

thing which has happened in the House of Commons is that people do

:56:17.:56:21.

not know each other and feel as much a part of that team. That has

:56:21.:56:25.

changed things in all parties. Recent figures about the number of

:56:25.:56:28.

people who have rebelled in the last three years, or in the last

:56:28.:56:33.

three years of the Labour government, show a great

:56:33.:56:37.

independence. Perhaps it also shows less communication between the top

:56:37.:56:46.

and the grassroots -- the grass roots. You are once dubbed the

:56:46.:56:52.

baby-faced assassin. Is it about MPs becoming more independent or

:56:52.:56:58.

have whips lost the power to impose the will of the leadership? A bit

:56:58.:57:02.

of each. In the days of the Callaghan government, the Thatcher

:57:02.:57:06.

government, politics was black and white. There were fundamental

:57:06.:57:14.

issues on a tribal basis. Everybody, you said trade unions, and everyone

:57:14.:57:19.

knew which side of the fence used baton. Issues are now much more

:57:19.:57:26.

complex. Environment and green issues. They are issues which need

:57:26.:57:30.

to be debated much more and do not allow for the sort of very

:57:30.:57:34.

straightforward decisions which politicians came to in those days.

:57:34.:57:39.

Do you think it is a good thing? MPs are not as predictable as the

:57:39.:57:45.

party line. I'm a great believer in politics being a team game. That

:57:45.:57:49.

should have plenty of room for independent souls. The best

:57:49.:57:53.

politicians know what it is they want and are willing to make

:57:53.:57:59.

sacrifices for it. They do not win on ill-discipline or the gears. I

:57:59.:58:06.

can remember going back to the 1970s, people thought it they'd

:58:06.:58:10.

vote against the Government, the Labour government is rubbish, vote

:58:10.:58:15.

for me. They lost. Hard lines will do what people want to see is

:58:15.:58:23.

people who are able to deliver. You do not live at as an individual. It

:58:23.:58:29.

might make you feel good but you do not deliver. There's just time

:58:30.:58:33.

before we go to find out the answer to our quiz. The question was: Who

:58:33.:58:36.

has Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said we mustn't upset? Is

:58:36.:58:40.

it: Liberal Democrats? Dustmen? Germans? Or hedgehogs? It has to be

:58:40.:58:50.

Jo Coburn is joined by guest-of-the-day Lord Michael Dobbs, author of the House of Cards political drama.


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS