13/09/2013 Daily Politics


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Afternoon, folks. Welcome to the Daily Politics. The Bank of England


is urged to intervene in the housing market and limit price


rises to 5% a year to avoid a house price bubble. How is that possible?


The Green Party kick off conference season with their gathering in


Brighton. We will report from the Green-run city and talk to its


Green MP, Caroline Lucas. Labour continue their campaign


against zero hours contracts but what are they and why are they in


Ed Miliband's sights? And we'll wrap up all this week's


top political stories in just 60 seconds. Or a pacy ten seconds, if


you are paying attention now! That is the name of the game. You have


lied to the people of London. I apologise. It just popped out. With


Boris, it has a habit of popping out, quite regularly. All that in


the next hour. And with me for the duration, Iain Martin, who writes


for the Sunday Telegraph, and Miranda Green, a former Lib Dem


insider, who now edits The Day - a daily news service for students.


She did not just be called the half-day? It is for secondary


schools. These of students who have to stay all day! It will never


catch on. Let's kick off with the suggestion this morning that the


Bank of England should intervene to put a lid on house price rises. The


Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors says the Bank should


consider acting to limit increases in the cost of houses to 5% a year


to take the froth out of the market. I would see it more as a speed bump.


When house-price inflation hits a certain level, there will be a


reaction from the Bank of England to try to slow things down. It is


about a more sustainable market. We're trying to avoid the market


lurching from bust to boom and back to bust again. What gives these


chartered surveyors the idea they can do just declared that house


prices should not rise by more than 5%? We are just coming off the back


of an economic crisis that has lasted almost as long as the Second


World War. I'm not sure how the proposals are practical. The


British are addicted to house price rises. It is also a very London


centric you. House prices are rising about 6% in London. London


has a whole ecosystem of its own. They are not rising in Wales. That


is the danger with this sort of proposal. It is understandable


where this is coming from. Maybe introducing some grit in the system


is a good idea. If you tried to do something to damp down London, all


the other areas of the country where people are still seeing the


value of homes for Jews year on year and not rise at all, will


suffer. -- reduced. There are legitimate concerns that this new


growth in house prices is not happening of its own volition. It


is happening because the Government is pumping up the market. Precisely.


The Government was desperate when it did not think growth was coming.


It launched the scheme and is stuck with it. It is a bizarre


proposition. After the experience of the last decade and a half and


the economic disaster that came from the last property bubble that


the Government should be fuelling house prices. It is completely


bonkers. If the Government is to give help to any kind of borrowers


cricketers not housebuyers it should be helping. That will not


happen anyway. -- borrowers, it is not house buyers. It is about loans


made him and small sized businesses. The problem with help to buy is


what they want to do is to relate new house building. The structural


problem in the housing market in the south-east is a lack of homes.


They want to stimulate a new build essentially. In London and the


south-east we have a particular problem. A lot of the new-build is


being bought by foreign nationals. Apparently flaps are being bought


up by Malaysians. 20% of new build in London goes to foreign buyers.


You need to have a look at a whole set of issues. It is clear Mr cable


is a little bit sceptical of this help to buy. He is obviously


worried about the bubbly effect. He said it needs to be watched


carefully and closely. A second stage comes in in the New Year.


Given that the housing market, certainly in London, is looking


pretty healthy and the economy is growing again. They may not go to


the second stage. It is time to turn off the tap and the get these


fiddly measures suggested this morning. They sound very


complicated. The morning. They sound very


one major tool to use, which is interest rates. They are not going


to move on interest rates any time soon. Capital Taliban from the PR


Ray and the Bank of England commit you could argue that restrictions


on capital... Taliban?Decided that the Bank of England under Mervyn


King, now departed, and Andrew the Bank of England under Mervyn


Bailey, the new regulator, were particularly concerned that banks


were not being asked to hold enough capital. They have increased their


amount of capital. They are known in the city as the capital Taliban.


That is like the economics of Robert Mugabe. We will not dwell on


that! Now it's time for our daily quiz. The question for today is,


who has indicated the Liberal Democrats should consider ditching


Nick Clegg before the 2015 general election? Was it... A) The


listeners of his radio show, b) Vince Cable, c) Matthew Oakeshott,


d) David Cameron? At the end of the show, Miranda and


Iain will give us the correct answer. It is pretty clear who it


is but you do know. We do know.It is like the first swallow in spring.


If you had looked at any of the newspapers this week, and why would


you bother when you can get your fix of political news here on the


Daily Politics, you might have read ithas not been a great week for


Labour and Ed Miliband. His march down to Bournemouth to bash the


unions at the annual TUC meeting on Wednesday never quite materialised.


Instead, the Labour leader was keen to show he was in tune with union


members, by attacking the increasing use of so-called zero


hour contracts. Here's a bit of what he had to say. We are going to


change it by banning zero hours contracts that same workers have to


be exclusively available for one employer. We are going to ban zero


hours contracts that save employer. We are going to ban zero


worker has to guarantee they will be available but they get no


guarantee of work. And we're going to end zero hours contracts. People


are actually doing regular hours but get a zero hours contract and


not a regular contract. We will end the exploitation of zero hours


contracts in this country. Ed Miliband there outlining Labour's


position on zero hours contracts. But what exactly are zero hours


contracts? Well, they allow employers to hire staff with no


guarantee of work. In other words, employees only work as and when


they are needed by employers, often at short notice, and are only paid


for the hours they work. Sick pay is often not included, although


holiday pay should be included, in line with working time regulations.


There is some dispute over how many workers are on these contracts. The


Office for National Statistics says it is around 250,000 workers, while


the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development estimates


that the real number is more than a million. A number of British


companies use these contracts, including retailer Sports Direct,


companies use these contracts, which employs 20,000


companies use these contracts, zero hours. Pub chain JD


Wetherspoon, Cineworld cinemas, a number of London councils - even


Buckingham Palace uses them. Despite their widespread use in


certain industries, the CIPD survey found only 14% of employees on zero


hours said their company failed to provide them with sufficient hours


to have a basic standard of living. But Labour and some union groups


argue their use is on the rise and they do not offer enough financial


stability and security for workers. I am joined now by Mark Beatson,


chief economist from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and


Development, which represents people working in recruitment and


has carried out its own research on zero hours. These contracts are


obviously popular with employers. Are they popular with employees?


They will be popular with some employees. One of the features is


that, in principle at least, they allow people to turn down the offer


of work. That can suit people who want to work periodically. For


example, a student might want to work 60 hours a one-week and then


they might have an essay the next week and want to turn the work down.


Are they on the rise? Probably. Our research did not look at the past


Trans. The Office for National Statistics data said it has been


increasing over the last five or six years. That is probably the


case. Mr Miliband says he does not want to ban them outright but he


wants to buy some kinds of contracts. Would that work? A lot


depends on the detail. It is difficult to define what these


practices are in terms of workable law. We need to look at regulation


alongside other approaches. For example, greater transparency. MPs


will be more aware of what they're letting themselves in for when they


signed up for these contracts. With us now is the Labour Shadow


Business Minister, Ian Murray, and Ruth Porter from the Institute of


Business Minister, Ian Murray, and Economic Affairs.


There are £250 a workers on these contracts. Only 14% of which say


they would like to work more pounds. What is the problem? The ONS


figures are believed to be slightly on the low side. Some people do not


know they are on zero hours contracts. The 14% figure is


interesting. Actually people can get more pounds and 10 to get more


pounds. It is the insecurity that is a problem. -- tend to get. He


have to look at how this is affecting job security. You would


not ban contracts and a bright, would you? They work for some


people. They work for students. They do work for various industries


and Ferris people. It is the exploitation that needs to be dealt


with. A problem is, if you were not going to ban them out right but you


are going to start to ban some kinds, it will become very


complicated to regulate, won't it? People need not to turn up to a


place of work and be told there is no work incentive. It needs to be


regulated. An employer needs to offer Howarth if they are asking


you to go into work. -- ate offered you hours. What will you do? Give


me a simple change in the law he would make. You would stop people


having an exclusive contract with employers on 0 hours and -- on 0


having an exclusive contract with hours less it is proven that is


what is wanted. We have asked the ONS to provide figures about


whether people want them. There are determining what the figures will


be and we can take them forward. I think there seems quite reasonable.


The need to look at the reality was that if we are talking about a


situation where 14% of people on these contracts cannot get


sufficient allowance, the answer to that is not to increase regulation


on employers and make it tougher for businesses committed to curb


what kind of conditions we can change in the economy to make more


jobs. -- it make it tougher for businesses. You do not think they


should intervene on these contracts. For some employers, it is a way of


getting cheap labour, isn't it? Some employers need flexibility.


That is a euphemism for cheap labour, isn't it? Flexibility is


hugely important. The CBI Homs said their estimate is that over the


course of the recession, if we had not hired a flexible labour market,


which had seen an extra half a million people who would have been


made unemployed. It is the really critical issue. I think it is a


slightly lazy argument. I ran my own business before becoming an MP.


I could have asked for two people on 0 as converts to turn up at 9


o'clock in the morning and choose 10 or 12 people to work. That


surely cannot be right. That is not the reality. If you have a small


manufacturing plant and you need people with a specific skill said,


manufacturing plant and you need it is not easy. It may simply be


the reality that you do not know from month to month what to order


book will look like. The dingy people on call on an exclusive


basis with the skills. That works for high-end skilled manufacturing.


He does not work at the lower end of the labour market. Low-skilled


workers are being put on to these contracts. It is bad for employees


and is ultimately bad for the employer. This is how the labour


market is moving. They are looking towards freelancing. They are not


seen the whole trend of 95, Monday to Friday, job for life. -- 9-5. In


the retail sector, you know you're busy on a Saturday, perhaps a


Thursday evening if you are late opening. We have seen JD Sports in


your piece. I think 90% of the staff are on that. Quite a few


Labour councils are on them as well. Some Labour councils have taken the


lead and getting rid of these contracts. Some of the councils to


have them. They must find some value in these contracts.


We have to be careful we don't lump everybody into the contracts. They


do work for some people. Lifeguards, supply teachers, to


guides at the House of Commons. -- tour guides. They want that. It has


to be something you want. The resolution foundation found that


those on these kinds of contract averagely earn £9 per hour compared


to £15 per hour for other workers. This is cheap Labour. That is a


reflection of some of the sectors where they tend to be most common.


Retail and the care sector. I'm not sure the average wage tells us much


about it. It goes to the question of what kind of economy we have. That


route point, the issue here is there are workers with more hours, what is


Labour going to do to create more jobs of all different kinds in the


economies of the people who are able and willing are able to find


sufficient work? That is a big question. Save it for another day.


Do not give it to any other programme. You can see why some of


this could lead to exploitation but also why some people would want some


kind of contract rather than none. Absolutely. There is an important


question about the statistics. I would like to know how it affects


young people in the workforce, a shop like JD Sports, they are going


into their first jobs, perhaps they are not fully aware of what kind of


contract they are getting. You are twice as likely to be young as those


on average on a contract. There is another side of the argument. It is


all leading to something better than being unemployed. The business


Department has said it will look at this. It is very interesting that Ed


Miliband promised to ban certain applications of this contract and


not ban it out right. Quite clearly, the way we work is changing. We are


not ban it out right. Quite clearly, not talking about turning up and not


not ban it out right. Quite clearly, being implied. This was a classic Ed


Miliband intervention, an interesting piece of analysis, but


he doesn't really have a clear plan. This is a very deep, long-lasting,


injuring problem. It is a consequence of globalisation driving


down Labour costs, and this is a problem in the tax and benefit


system, over many decades we have trained certain sectors to become


reliant on cheap Labour with the expectation that the taxpayer will


then top it up. Somehow, over the next decade, we have to unscramble


those changes. My response would be a simpler, lower, flatter tax


system, but that is easier to say than implement. I can understand why


Labour want to look at this, but in the grand scheme of things it is not


exactly going to set the heather on fire. This is very bad for the


economy, consumer confidence. How can you create the jobs that people


want when you cannot get this? The government are giving significant


tax cuts to corporations while the taxpayer is subsidising wages. I


will give you the final word. The Mac one positive thing that has come


out of this being raised is more people are on these contracts are


now realise they are on these contracts. There is evidence. I had


better look at my contract. Hopefully this debate will have


approved -- improve that. It has certainly educated me. It is not


just the big parties in conference mode. The Green Party of England and


Wales are about to go to the seaside today. They help minority control of


the Council of the city they are meeting in and they have the


country's only Green MP. He liked to tell us they are different. Living


up to that principle has meant they seem to be doing some rather public


falling out on Brighton City Council.


The thing about visiting and living in Brighton is it is not a shy


city. It is loud, determinate lead different, and it wants you to know


it. -- determined to be different. That attitude has permeated the


politics. It is a place of alternative lifestyles, alternative


mindsets. The Green Party sum that up. When they came in two years


ago, people thought they wanted something different. What has


happened recently is certainly different. By principle, Green


councillors are not whipped into voting for party policy. Councillors


have had some very public arguments. Astonishingly, this whole


thing comes down to fruit. The Greens are divided into watermelons


and mangoes. Watermelons are read on the inside, socialist. Mangoes are


yellow on the inside, more practical. But they need to work


together. Here in Brighton, that mix has been more of a fruit salad.


Examples include a strike green leader was arguing why the binmen


were wrong and needed to get back to work, and his deputy was outside on


the picket lines with the workers. The first Green MP was also publicly


sympathetic to the binmen's cause. It was unfortunate. It was not the


best message to be sending. The outcome is we are on course to have


a fairer system of pay. Then the Green Party voted for a plan to do


at the local area, it would have meant a tree would have been left.


But then one of them change the mind -- their mind and led the campaign


whilst their fiance led the protests from up the tree.


Taxes and businesses have scoffed at the 20 mph speed limit that nobody


in forces. Opponents have said the Greens have gone through the looking


glass, especially when there was an idea that mediators might be brought


in to get them back together. Mediation for political parties just


does not happen. It is just bonkers. People said that. When you


look at our record, we are effective. I accept the perception


that this is less than helpful. The only way to know if they understood


is when Bray Tony and is go to the polls in 2015. -- Brighton people.


We can top to the former leader of the party, Caroline Lucas. Welcome


back. I understand that the Green Party in Brighton who run the


council have been falling out among themselves so much you had to


consider mediators to sort out the party. Is that right? I think


parties having differences of views is not specific to the Green Party.


You have Labour with the rows over the unions or the conservative


rebellion on Syria, Sarah Teather walking away from the Liberal


Democrats. This is nothing new. What is new is when it happens, we look


for help. Did you bring in mediators? I'm not sure if they have


or not. I am not on the council. I know that is being discussed. You


are the MP for the city. I imagine... If the party is so


divided you need to bring in mediators... I really disagree with


you. You would not be saying that if there were two people in a marriage


trying to find their way through it and used mediators. It is


interesting, the language that mediation is a dirty word. Imagine


if Tony Blair and Gordon Brown had got some mediation a few years ago.


We might have had a better country. I would not knock it. Are you a


mango or a watermelon? I had a feeling you were going to ask me


that. I do not want to identify myself as a piece of fruit. I will


say that policies are more popular than your clip suggested. We have


been the first council to say that we will not evict people on the


basis of the bedroom tax. The counsellor is also reduced the


differential between the highest and lowest paid. They have been bringing


a living wage to Brighton and will the there is a lot of good news. How


can you ended up on the picket line protesting against the council? --


how come. There was one high-profile decision where the council was


divided and the local party and the city was divided. That issue was one


we inherited, from previous administrations who had not sorted


out this situation. It was desperately difficult and of course


there will be differences of views. You will have differences of views


with Labour and the Tories. Here is the first green council in the


country, it is a minority counsel, so it is more difficult than if you


had a majority. They face a difficult dispute with rescues


collectors. Lo and behold, they find their fellow Green MP for that city


is on the picket line against them. It is not exactly a brotherly or


sisterly organisation. The council was split on the issue. The party


was split on the issue, the city was split on the issue. You are trying


to make this into some symbol of division, but the decisions and


divisions are unfortunately part of political life whichever party you


are part of. How are your relations with the most powerful Green


politician in the country, Jason Kitcat? Very good. You will see it


as the conference on full because you will be glued to the television.


You said 0-hour contracts have no place in the 21st century and should


be banned but we learn Brighton Council has about 1000 people on


0-hour contracts. There is a difference between the contract that


mean you have to absolutely be on stand-by at any point, do not have


the benefits of holidays and other provisions, but you are asking me


about council issues. I would rather provisions, but you are asking me


you ask me about Parliamentary issues. It is perfectly legitimate,


since you have said this, and the one council in this country run by


your party as 1000 casual workers who have no guarantee of shifts. --


your party as 1000 casual workers as 1000. That is not the same thing.


We need to be clearer about what we mean by this. There is a difference


between people having a relationship with the council where they come in


and they are perfectly able to take other jobs when they want them and


the situation as we understand it which is when you absolutely have to


be at beck and call and if you do not do it you are penalised and do


not have any of the benefits that go along with it. Where does the Green


Party go from here? You have one MP, one minority counsel, there is no


sense that they either coming force in this country. You may struggle to


hold onto what you have got. What you do? The European elections are


coming up next year. They are the next big platform. There has been a


poll published that put us at 12%. That means we have a really good


chance of increasing the number of members of the European Parliament.


We currently have two. We could look at as many as six. If we achieve


that it is a really good springboard going forward. Many of the things we


will be doing is basically showcasing the European policies and


making sure people know very clearly that if they want a safer


environment then vote Greens into the European Parliament. The problem


with pinning hopes on a breakthrough in the European elections is you


will certainly be overshadowed by UKIP. Since UKIP apparently are on


track to win hands down you could say that if you were talking to


anyone. I'm not sure that is the most significant issue. If we were


to treble Arab MEPs that would be fantastic -- our MEPs. . There have


been countries where the Greens are fantastic -- our MEPs. . There have


on the mark, much more so than in Britain. Where would you identify


where you can see a green movement to which the future belongs?


We take huge inspiration from the Greens, certainly in Nordic


countries. They have to critical things we do now have at home -


state funding for political parties... In Germany, Angela


Merkel is going to get the biggest vote in Germany. The Greens are


doing incredibly well in Germany. Sweden is what I mentioned, not


Norway. The you mentioned Scandinavia. Anyway, let's talk


about Sweden in particular, where we are doing extremely well. Greens


all over Europe a doing well. For me have a more fair electoral


system, you will see that here. -- when we have. In the European


elections with but over when we have. In the European


votes. That should not be easily dismissed. -- we got. What message


to want to come at the Brighton this weekend? The Green Party is


the only party that is delivering. Come and join us. It is in your


home Parliamentary Cancer it should be good fun for you. -- Council.


Cast your minds back far enough and you might remember our next guest.


He is the founder of UKIP and served as their first leader. Yes,


that's right. It's Alan Sked. And now he has formed a new left of


centre, anti-EU party called New Deal. As well as advocating


Britain's exit from the EU, New Deal will pledge to renationalise


the railways and scrap some of the coalition's benefit changes. But


how does he feel about his old party now that it's doing so well


electorally? He has described the UKIP led by Nigel Farage as anti-


immigrant, anti-intellectual and racist. Strong words indeed. Here


is Mr Sked unveiling UKIP's general election manifesto in 1997. We will


be the rock in this Craik period of flux in British politics with other


parties cracking and groaning and braking. We expect MPs to come


swimming to us, believing in the policy of British independence and


withdrawal from the European Union. policy of British independence and


And Alan Sked joins us now. That was very embarrassing. I looked


younger. That was a long-time ago. We all looked younger. That was in


1997. What went wrong? What went wrong was that the party has gone


into a bunker bonkers land. That is to coin a phrase. They want to be


MEPs and take monies. Nigel Farage has claimed £2 million of expenses.


2 million! That was in a debate with Denis MacShane. They did not


do anything. A almost as big as a BBC pay-off. You will be looking


forward to that. I would not get one of them. I am not stuff. I


could go back and a zero hour contract. Is there room for two


anti-EU parties? I hope so. I have this idea of having a pincer


strategy of where by the first party I founded presses the


Conservatives, per-second will pressure - smack of the second will


press the Labour and Lib Dems. -- the second. UKIP is going to


dominate this debate still. No, it is not. It might do well at the


European elections but after that it is not doing well at will. It


got 23% in the local elections. That was on a turnout of 70%. I do


not want to talk about UKIP. It is not my party. Is it not because


not want to talk about UKIP. It is you're trying to launch you kip of


the left? Isn't it the case that people who want to leave Brussels,


who are anti-European, tend - not always - they tend to be more right


of centre and left of centre. The Labour Party has been staunchly


anti- EU. Since I founded the party, I am approached by all sorts of


people - young people. Mainly students. The average age of people


working has been 25. They want out of the EU but have a sense of


social justice. The other thing we are in politics for is to try to do


something with the huge inequality that exists today in a our society.


-- in our society. I think the bedroom tax is iniquitous and


obscene and we would abolish it. How many candidates were you put up


obscene and we would abolish it. at the European elections? -- will


you put up? We are not contesting that. It is hypocritical. We


thought you were the anti-party. We do not believe in European


institutions. The anti-party is UKIP. We are not going to go down


that road. We will boycott those. What about council elections? It


depends how fast the party grows. We have been in existence for four


days. You cannot give us some idea We have been in existence for four


of how many parliamentary candidates you hope. As many as


possible. Where is the money coming from? We do not have millionaire


backers yet. I would love as many backers as possible. What we will


probably do is try to follow the Obama campaign and to rip through


social networks and donations. -- and do it through. We're setting up


a website. What chance has he got - between none an zero? It reminds me


of Monty Python's Life of Brian and the Popular Front of Judaea. Alan


was a man ahead of his time. British politics is and has been


fracturing and cities incredibly difficult for the two large parties


- to ever get back to the mid- forties, 48, 49% vote they got in


the 1950s. There is room for new parties, a new political ventures.


I think it would be very tough. So much attention will be focused on


UKIP. The media is desperate to see whether or not they are successful


or whether they blow up spectacular early next year. You mentioned a


figure of 6%. If Nigel Farage does get 6% in the next UK general-


election, that is very significant. It is almost 2 million votes cast a


body huge damage to David Cameron. What we are seeing - what we also


saw was Alan decorin some of the things Caroline Lucas was saying


about the bedroom tax and inequality. -- echoing. There is


another threat and that is to do with the idea of an unequal society.


It is a huge problem for the Government. We are moving towards


economic recovery. What do you do to try to share the proceeds of


growth? Will the new parties be able to start a genuine gap in the


market? The new promise Labour Party has accepted the working


plans of the Tory, Lib Dem government. The thing about


inequality is the top 1% is seen to be getting richer and richer, the


people at the bottom have zero contracts and unpaid internships.


These were the issues for you as much as Europe? Yes.Do not go away


yet. I have to read this and then you can go. You need to get the


hang of this if you are coming back into politics. When the Royal Bank


of Scotland collapsed in October 2008, it had to be bailed out by


you, me, and all British taxpayers. And it played a leading role in


taking the British economy into its deepest downturn since the 1920s.


At the centre of it all was the pantomime banking villain himself,


Fred Goodwin. In a new book, our guest, Iain


Martin, tells the story of Fred the Shred and the collapse of RBS.


We'll discuss it in a moment. First though, let's remind ourselves of


We'll discuss it in a moment. First the trouble Fred got into in front


of the Treasury Select Committee back in 2009. How much worse could


it have been at RBS had he not been in charge? Well, I think I fully


accept my responsibility in the matter. I would imagine there are


others out there who think they are there but for the grace of God. It


was a fact, all the more numbing, after a rights issue - right


through to the middle of September - we were moving forward positively.


It was post Leman Boots that confidence to -- post Lehman that


confidence collapsed. There are lots of banking villains from that


era. We have seen them parading in front of select committees in the


House of Commons. It is the scale that Fred Goodwin operated. The


reason I have focused on RBS particularly, there are other banks


are in the brick, the reason I focused on him particularly is it


was the biggest bank in the world. He said a want us to be bigger than


was the biggest bank in the world. JPMorgan. They got their wish at


precisely the wrong moment. They doubled in size. They went into the


crisis as the biggest bank in the world. The explosion, when it


happened, was obviously enormous. It cost the taxpayer 45 billion at


least to rescue. Hundreds more billions in liquidity and ex Agger


and played a major role in the billions in liquidity and ex Agger


economic crisis that followed. -- in liquidity, etc, and played a


major role. It is thought Fred Goodwin did not realise how bad


things were until it was too late. That is a fair analysis. It is


often forgotten he is not, and was not, a banker. He is an accountant.


He did not going to banking until 1995 when he was poached. Within


five years of that he was running RBS as see either. He has a mission,


which is following on from his predecessor in Scotland to create


the world's best bank, based in Edinburgh. It is a tiny Scottish


institution and will grow to become a world-beating bank. Patters a


perfectly respectable and admirable instinct. -- that is. It gets


completely out of control. He is not a rogue trader. He is not one


banker operating alone and try not to get caught. The crash that


involved RBS was the biggest of the lot. What stunned me, I am not a


financial journalist, I am a political journalist. In terms of


the numbers, I think what is most interesting and what was missed at


the time is the scale of what happened to the British banking


system in terms of its expansion. In 1990, and Margaret Thatcher


leaves office, the UK banking system, its total assets combined


of all the clearing banks, 70% of GDP - a sum equivalent to that. AIG,


30% of GDP. -- by 2005. He bought ABM Amro and the crash came. If the


crash had not come, would he have survived with this incredible


expansion? All we did have caught up with him? It would have caught


up with him eventually cost of the crisis had already started. He


still pushed ahead with it. It is about hubris and monument building.


He was determined to be Barclays. He was very proud of RBS as an


institution and would not be beaten. He had an opportunity to withdraw


and did not - catastrophically. That decision, they did not realise,


that doubled the size of the bank. What was the most surprising thing


you discovered? There is no doubt for all the


mistakes he made, he was the victim after words of a classic British


establishment hit job, in which it suited a lot of people, regulators,


auditors, politicians, to say that it was all about one guy and it was


not. And they rounded on him as the scapegoat. Have you read the book? I


have read some extracts. Who says politics is the only place where


there are psychological flaws? Really extraordinary tics of his


particular character, but it is a very good point. It is the culture


of banking. When Prince William and Prince Harry were doing their stunt,


it is all very jolly and hilarious but actually what happens to £250


billion in one trade is not that funny as it affects the rest of us.


billion in one trade is not that What do you think wins elections?


Manifesto policies, good reviews on the Daily Politics, according to my


next guess, the cancer is the none of the above. Jim Gilliam is an


American software programmer who says he believes political campaigns


need to harness social media. He says British politicians are


learning from the states. Not just good chat on this show. Jim


Gilliam joins us now. It seems to be the lesson of the Barack Obama


campaign was that you needed lots of social media, you needed to use


digital, but you needed boots on the ground as well. Is that true?


Absolutely. Basically it helps you bring that together. Your software.


It is about connecting the online and the off-line together. What the


Barack Obama campaign did really effectively was it took the online


energy, and they really helped all their supporters learn how to tell


their own story and connect it to the campaign, what it was he wanted


to do. Hosting parties and fundraisers locally, knocking on


doors, it came down to people sharing their stories with each


other. So they used the social media to educate the troops into how to


present their candidate to voters? It is quite the opposite of message


discipline, with everybody trying to say the same thing. What they are


trying to do is in power they are supporters to talk about the


campaign from their own personal stories. Everybody had a reason why


they wanted health care. I connecting all that back and


providing the tools and infrastructure, so that now you


don't have to have a lot of resources, it can help everybody,


any campaign that wants to organise people. Have you looked at the


British political party websites? I try not to. They should be in the


British Museum. They are in the dark ages. What is exciting for us is


because the software has been so good, we have had a lot of pick-up.


because the software has been so We are seeing large-scale


roll-outs. We are doing training for conferences coming up. We will start


to see that tide turned quickly. They have a long way to go, don't


they? There is definitely elements of that. There is a lot of software


around, lots of campaigning of this kind going on. What is different


about yours? One big difference is we did not approach it as a


consulting company, but a product company. We bring a Silicon Valley


ethic. It is not about making it available to the top Senate


campaigns, although it works. It is making it broadly accessible to


everybody. As a result it is much easier to use. Did the Lib Dems not


use a version of this? They have always been very good at motivating


the ground troops. Knocking on doors, local organising. It is


really important for them if they are going to hold those seats next


time to get a handle on all these things that can help them retain


that advantage, you have to have the right product to sell. It is very


important they are on the ground organising. They speak about it all


the time but why are British parties so useless about this? Everywhere


else we are plugged into the digital age. There are iPads, twitter,


everything else. Old-fashioned, lack of money. I think the community


engagement side of it is positive. What I find Julius is a lot of this


stuff, having been used so successfully in high finance,


emphasis on computerisation, data mining, all these things when you


transfer them into politics, there is a danger that the candidate does


not need to think about ethics or judgement or ideas or arguments. You


just mine all this information, use a cleverly and get your candidate


just mine all this information, use over the line. -- use it cleverly.


It was tried in high finance, it is now being extended into every area


of our life. Are you going to any of the party conferences? We have staff


at all of them but I am going to have to head home. You are lucky. I


can believe you are doing that with your staff. -- I cannot believe. Now


it is time to look at who has had a good week and who has shocker. --


has had. There were no green shoots as the chancellor visited a building


site to unveil his new catchphrase. Britain is turning a corner. No more


Mr nice Maher at City Hall as Boris Johnson lost his temper. You lied to


the people of London. Get stuffed. The coalition is selling off the


Royal mail. The unions did not exactly give the stamp of approval.


Speaking of unions, look at the rapturous reception they gave Ed


Miliband. We have to have the courage to change. In Strasbourg,


the president of the European commission warned that you respect


ticks bring back war to the continent. -- Eurosceptics. Nigel


Evans announced he was standing down. He says he will sit as an


independent while he faces charges of sexual assault. This is clearly


the most painful thing I have endeared in my life. -- injuried.


Are you going to the party conferences? Absolutely. I am


missing the Lib Dem conference. I have a rule not going to let them


conferences. How could you say that? You will be going. I am. I would


like to go to the others. I think what is going on in the Labour Party


is really fascinating. We have a survey carried out on MPs attending


the Tory conference, 59, 29 word definitely or probably not going. If


they can be bothered, why should anybody else? The Tory conference


has been hollowed out. It is too expensive for activists. It is very


different from what it was 20 years ago. You do not feel you are


encountering real activist or seeing the heart of the party. The Lib Dem


conference I did go to was very different, to the credit. It felt


like proper politics. It could be quite lively this year. C. We had a


quiz at the start of the show when we asked, who was it who called for


the Nick Clegg to be ditched? Miranda was clear who it was. It was


Lord Oakeshott. He has got that on a loop, hasn't he? He has. It pops up


every year at about this time. Can we agree that there is no chance of


the Lib Dems ditching Nick Clegg? I think we can agree about that. There


will be some heated conversations think we can agree about that. There


about various policies. The irony is when the opposition should be


soaring, it is interesting because of Ed Miliband's problems, the


Labour conference. Nick Clegg is in a pretty good place. David Cameron


Labour conference. Nick Clegg is in is resurgent. Ed Miliband has a lot


of questions to answer. That is why you should be going to the Labour


conference. Yes, but he did a damp squib of a speech. He could do


better. Lets hope so. Last year he gave a good speech and he captured


attention. What does he have to say now? If you don't go it will be live


on the Daily Politics. That is it. Thank you to all my guests. I will


be back on BBC One this Sunday for the Sunday politics. It is back. Not


until 1:30pm. I will be speaking to Paddy Ashdown. We will have live


coverage of Vince Cable's speech. Goodbye.


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