30/10/2013 Daily Politics


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Good morning, this is the Daily Politics. Don't all show that


once... -- shed at once, but some of Britain's energy companies to


greedy? Perish the thought. We will be talking to the boss of a wee


energy firm who thinks they are. He plans to investigate the market that


will be looked at by the Government tomorrow. And in the interests of


saving energy, we will be harnessing the hot air of this week PMQs.


It's round two of when Mo met Tommy. We'll be talking to the former


leader of the EDL. And is the NHS engine over-heating?


We'll be talking to one health specialist who has this rather scary


warning? All that and more in the next


ever-increasing wave of demand, it will soon break down.


We are coping here this morning, but more of that in the next 90 minutes.


And with as for the duration, Westminster's finest double act.


Their agents told me to say that. Al and Vern. It could be one word, Alan


Byrne. In pursuit of public service broadcasting, iota of vessel, they


were all we could afford. The International Development Minister


Alan Duncan and the shiny new Shadow Defence Secretary, big Vernon Coker.


Welcome to you both. Since I have you both here, international aid,


defence, should some of the aid budget be taken to help our


stretched forces? People think that if you took the aid budget and


transferred it to defence, it would make all the difference but we


worked so well together already. The defence budget is three and a half


times the size of the total development budget, but we work very


closely together in lots of conflict ridden places in the world and at


the moment, we have pressing requirement in Syria and outside


Syria in what is the biggest humanitarian intervention. The


defence budget is being slashed, yours is being increased. If you


want me to give money to him, if he were in Government would you want to


take money away from people who are eating cats and dogs in Damascus?


You know that is not the choice, because that kind of aid, that goes


directly to help people in real need, is a very small percentage of


your 10 billion. You gave... Two thirds of your budget goes through


the World Bank, the EU, the UN, three bywords for waste and


profligacy. I don't think so, but you are right, there is a


significant element, 40%, that goes to multilateral organisations, much


of it which would happen if there was not a department for


International development, but don't me the United Nations is not doing


important stuff to feed people, to help them, keep the peace -- then


tell. You know how much they waste. It is very glib to say get rid of


them all, we know what they do and we keep a beady eye on them to make


sure we get value for the money we give them. You have been attacking


the Government for numbers only terror shall -- numbers in the


territorial Army, trying to beef it up, but wouldn't you need to come if


you are trying to do it, for extra money for defence? What we are


saying is the Government has one problem of reform, it is in trouble


in the number of reservists that are being used to take the place of the


number of full-time soldiers. So it is a reform problem. We should they


should pause, with respect to that, to see if it will save them any


money or whether actually, there is a better way of doing it. I


understand what you mean but if you were to stop this move of a


rebalancing towards a bigger reservist army, that would cost you


more money in the short run as professional soldiers are more


expensive. Where would you get that from? That is why you posted, it is


not about spending more money, it is about looking to see what is


happening with respect to the reform programme that the Government is


pursuing, and there are some doubts as to whether it will actually save


any money at all. He was the interesting thing that people don't


understand. That -- hearers. We give ?450 million a year to Pakistan


while we slash around defence budgets to give us the smallest army


since the Napoleonic war. And yet Pakistan spends how much of its


national budget on defence? I agree that... Let me tell you. They spend


54% of all federal spending in Pakistan on defence. So we give them


a small amount of money, so that they can do something with the


appalling poverty there, although it is only on the edges, while they


spent over half of their money on something we are slashing, called


defence. Explain the logic? If we don't act as we are acting in


Pakistan, this is the country where some of the greatest dangers in the


world could emanate, including having the nuclear balance next door


with India. So what we do in Pakistan can make an enormous amount


of difference. If you had a Pakistan incomplete decay, the costs of


curing that problem would far exceed the money spent... You cannot claim


that 450 million is making a difference to whether Pakistan goes


over the edge or not, let's be serious. It makes a contribution to


that but we are also focusing on course on pressing polity, there is


pretty ghastly poverty in Pakistan and we don't turn our backs on


people who don't know where their next meal is coming from. Of course,


they would if they didn't spend half of their budget on defence in the


Pakistan Government. Today, the Privy Council, the group


of senior ministers who advise the Queen, is due to head to Buckingham


Palace to finally approve the Royal Charter and press regulation. Once


it is approved, following the ideals of the Levinson choir is a done


deal, but the press has other ideas, trying to put the charter on hold.


Ross Hawkins watches all things Levinson, so we don't have to, a


very admirable role. -- Levenson. What is happening?


The weight of deja vu is crashing. We have been on the traffic island


in front of this court before four months and months, hearing from Lord


Justice Leveson, thinking it would be sorted out, but it wasn't


anywhere near. Today, finally settling on the version of a Royal


Charter to help regulate the press that the political parties agree on,


surely it will be over them? Apparently not. What the press are


trying to do is get an injunction to say that that meeting cannot go


ahead, Her Majesty cannot give the seal on this. They say that because


the way that version of the press charter was dealt with was unfair,


we heard in there that there was practically a Kafkaesque situation.


Two judges looking wisely over their glasses at a QC. I wouldn't dare


predict what judgement they will come to, but it is possible but at


the end of this hearing, the Queen and ministers get told, I am awfully


sorry, you cannot make a decision today because the lawyers will not


let you. Ross Hawkins, thank you. Joining us


is the Sun columnist Trevor Kavanagh. You are trying to hold


this progress for a Royal Charter, but what you really want is delayed,


because more delay will mean that this could be kicked into the long


grass and you can go ahead and set up your own regulator. No, we want a


regulator. We want clarity. What we have is a fudge and this is a


political attempt to control the press by state statute, and it has


been stitched up in secret in late-night meetings between parties


that do not involve the newspaper industry, and the Privy Council,


which meets in secret. We don't even know who is in the Privy Council.


You don't know the players at this point, you will know afterwards, but


what is missing in terms of clarity? Transparency, for one thing. But you


know what is being proposed. We do. The simple fact is we don't know who


is making the decision, how they are doing so, where they are even


meeting, in fact. When the initial plan was put together, it was at


3am, involving political party leaders in the office of Ed


Miliband, attended by the campaigning group Hacked Off, and no


representation from the newspaper groups. And it was proposed, not


voluntarily agreed, but we have put one forward that covers everything


that Leveson suggested except it does not require state legislation.


What will you do if the High Court bid today fails? I suspect we will


continue to operate under the terms of the charter we set up. Will that


be up and running by January? I should think so. So nothing is going


to change your mind in terms of signing up to what has been proposed


by the Government? Nobody is going to sign up, I think, to state


control. Do you know that for a fact? It is going to be a case of


safety in numbers, so if everybody stays on board, along the lines you


have said that, then you are going to have a much bigger stick to try


and beat the Government with. Are you worried that some of them may


pull away if the Royal Charter goes ahead today? It is always possible,


but if anything, they are getting more together than falling apart, so


I think the Government measures are not wholly supported, even within


the Government. So I think that there is plenty of room, even


there, for negotiation and manoeuvre. I wouldn't be surprised


if something crops up. Is there room for negotiation? What happens, Alan


Duncan, if the charter is sealed today and the press, the main


groups, say no. It is absurd to call the state control. All it is doing


is setting up a framework within which they can be a process of


independent regulation, so that neither Trevor know I know Vernon


can make a judgement over the press -- nor I, nor Vernon. What we have


lacked over many years is a genuine independent, really sort of process


of address. Some members of the press have behaved abominably and


many who think they are the victims of bad press contact me Natalie feel


they have no means of redress -- bad press conduct feel they have no


means of redress. This is doing something about it. But my question


is, what you do if the say no? They will run the risk of damages and


don't sign up? I don't know the immediate answer. So many people are


so bamboozled about what has really happened since Levenson, they are in


a muddle. If you are to as people in the street what this charter is


about, they will say they don't understand. But my understanding is,


as I have just explain that if the press do not somehow sign up to it,


it is a pity, because they came up with a proposal that was not


compliant with what Lord Justice Leveson suggested. Yes it was, it


was completely compliant. It was voluntary, it covered everything he


recommended. It wanted former editors to sit on the regulation.


What about the composition of those sitting in regulation? Former


editors... You have got to have some input from people who know the


industry is about. As Ed Miliband Harding in his view since the row


about his father with the Daily Mail -- as Ed Miliband hardened in his


view? I think he has been motivated all the way through by the fact that


we are in a situation that the press backwardly public had lost faith in


the complaints procedure. What we are discussing some of the most


awful abuses of press abuse that we have seen, cases like Millie Dowler.


It is not about regulating the press, as such, it is about how


complaints are dealt with, how ree dress is achieved by people in a way


which is independent of Parliament, and independent of the press, and I


think people would see that as sensible. How determined are the


Tories to see this through? I don't think it is the Tories, as such.


Politicians are trying to find an answer to the long-standing question


about how to address the unsatisfactory state of press


regulations, as Vernon has just said. In my view, there is nothing


in here that would go anywhere near stopping the press saying something


they thought was true. As the Americans say, you can put lipstick


on a pig and it is still a pig. On that parroted line, we will end it


there, thank you. It was billed as the dirty


half-dozen meets high noon. But what happened when the big six energy


bosses, actually not all of them turned up, their surrogates,


appeared before the energy select committee yesterday afternoon?


Surprise surprise, they defended prices in the rise of wholesale


energy. The show was not stolen by any of the MPs doing the cruising


but by one Lone Ranger, the managing director of OVO Energy. Here is a


flavour of the session. The easiest way I can explain to you


what has happened in the wholesale market in terms of pricing is the


most expensive price we have paid for wholesale gas in the last four


years was in May 2011, 74p, and since then, it has been below 73p


for this winter, last winter and next winter. We are buying for next


winter at the current price of 69p. So I cannot explain any of these


price rises other than they are not the prices that we see in the


wholesale market. We effectively ran our retail business as a separate


business unit, and one of the things the Labour Party has been talking


about is ring fencing generation and retail. That is something that we


effectively do and we would support. Is it not just about the


biggest problem, that is that consumers can no longer afford to


pay their energy bills? In politicising things, what are you


going to do for consumers? When it comes to... There are two key things


to talk about, all the profits they are? But how can the profits be fair


when people cannot afford to pay for energy? Because the second part of


this is what we do with the profits. I do not make a 5% profit in my


business, if that does not happen, I cannot employ 20,000 people. They


are equally members of our society. And cannot afford to operate the


company. We make a fraction of what mobile phone company makes.


Dashboard off on companies make. Why have written to the Prime Minister


and the Secretary of State Colin for a Competition Commission. I


fundamentally believe that this market is competitive. But iPods


that we are not trusted and therefore I believe that we need to


have a very thorough Competition Commission investigation. We're


trying to track down where the money is going and last time out was here


and the time before then, I said you will never find it. These guys are


the best at filibustering in the business. And the Chief Executive of


overall energy, you saw in front of the committee yesterday, joins us


from Bristol. -- overall energy. I understand that you do not pay the


same environmental and social charges, so that must be one reason


why you do not charge as much. You are right. Ofgem tried to encourage


more competition by allowing exemptions to small suppliers. Over


the last couple of years, we have not contributed to the environmental


levies. They make up about 4% of the bills and some of the price


differences we have seen are more like 14 or 15%. What is the average


difference between somebody with British Gas and somebody with you?


The average of the four of the big six, the average is about ?165. That


is about 14 or 15% higher. But you increased prices in April? We our


prices up, having not raise our prices for the whole of last winter.


After the warm weather last year, we decided not to have a pricing


crease. As it was a cold March and April, we saw a rebound in gas and


electricity prices. And that led to us putting up our presence. Like any


other energy company, when our wholesale prices go up, our prices


will follow. We have always said we would try to keep this to a minimum.


But it is not like we will never put up prices. This is not, there is no


magic solution. But you said that wholesale prices are lower than they


were two years ago and have looked at the costs and that is right. Why


have you not reduced your bills? As everybody has said, there are lots


of components that make up consumer energy bills. There are


environmental and social levies and wholesale gas costs. Last October,


we saw network costs going up considerably. This was offset by a


temporary fall in wholesale prices so we did not change our price


because, on balance, our input costs had not changed. When the wholesale


price moved back up again, in April, we had to pass that on. But


according to Ofgem, wholesale gas and electricity prices are going to


rise this winter, too, and that is why the energy prices have gone up.


The price we are paying for wholesale gas has not moved


significantly in the last two years. Electricity is creeping up but it is


a couple of percentage points. All we're saying is that we do not see


those price rises in our wholesale costs. If the big six are paying


more for gas and electricity, that is a matter for them. What is your


profit margins? We hope to make 5% profit per customer. One of the


things that makes us different is that we try to make 5% of profit for


each customer rather than making a big profit margin on some customers


and a loss on others. So your profit margins is no different from the big


six? I do not think profits are evil. They are not the problem. I


think most consumers would be very happy to have a profitable energy


company supplying them as long as they got good service and they felt


they were getting good value for money. In the absence of good value


for money and good customer service, people look to energy company


profits and say that they do not deserve them. I'm not sure whether


you have said it but the big six have been accused of being a cartel


is a word with a particular meaning, cartels are actually


illegal under British and German law. A cartel implies people


colluding against the interests of the public. And IFS eyes colluding.


Is it your view that they are a cartel? -- and I emphasise. I do not


believe that they are a cartel. A cartel implies collusion, and I do


not think there are secret meetings somewhere where they decide how much


to charge British customers, but they do -- I do think they are as


bad as each other. They do not offer a great choice. I would like to see


the regulator take a stronger line on promoting competition and, in


particular, new entrants into the market like us, although we would be


happy to see more entrants offering different business models and


therefore more choice. Think we have to be careful. The big six have an


important role to play in the energy industry. There is a lot of


investment required. We would like to win some of their market share


but we're not saying that what they are doing is illegal or in anyway


collusive. We just think they are all pretty much the same. You say


you're going to have to start paying the green levies next year.


Wholesale gas prices, you say, are rising again. And you have to pay


the regulated costs of distribution to the National Grid, which because


we are building windmills in parts of the world weather is not


distribution, that is becoming an expensive part of doing business. I


would think that your LO just prices will have to go up to. -- your


electricity prices. I will not rule anything out but I can say that we


have no plan for a price rise. But they all say that! The boss of aeon


said that on the BBC this morning! Michael Heseltine said that when he


said he was not running against Margaret Thatcher. -- EON. You're


sounding like a politician now! Bad news indeed! If our costs go up and


we cannot absorb them, prices will have to go up. We have never claimed


to have the magic all it. We do not claim to have a secret answer. -- a


magic bullet. We are trying to be as efficient as possible. We do not


have any marketing gimmicks to convince customers they are getting


a good deal. That forces us to keep our costs down. I hope that we will


just be better than the competition. I do not know that we can keep a lid


on prices for ever if everyone else's costs are going up. Alan


Duncan, are we clearer yet? The Prime Minister, spoke of rolling


back the green levies. Are we any clearer on what that means? I think


we want to reduce the burden of the green levies. Which ones? That was a


remarkable interview because that had the answer. Anger or hatred will


not bring down prices. 30 years ago, in the oil business, the traders I


worked for drove the big companies out of their dominance. That kind of


market power is what we need in the utilities industry. So what is your


answer? The answer is that we need more companies like that. That is


the answer to your question. My question was, indulge me, and answer


the question. What green levies are we talking about? This has not been


defined exactly. So you do not know. No. Well, don't waffle, just say you


do not know. Peter Helm, the premier egg Djurdjic -- energy expert says


that the cost of investing in energy capital is higher so that the costs


will be higher, thanks to Labour. I disagree. We said that the should be


a price freeze. If we were to win the next election. During that time,


we would refund the market and do all the things that we said. But if


he removes the levies, he will be able to cut the price, not just


freeze at? But nobody has a clue. If global prices have gone up. How can


you reform the market? He has no idea what he's talking about. We


have to move. As we have been hearing, gas bills are rising, and


saw temperatures. Actually, they are falling. Often leaves this morning.


The first taste of what I've fought one got back this morning. The


clocks have gone back and the nights are drawing in. It is a cliche a


second. Our Energy Secretary is investing in knitwear. So we have


developed something better. Look at this, the Daily Politics mug cosy.


Trendier than Flashdance legwarmers and cuddlier than eight crotch did


Ed Davey, even a crotchety Ed Davey. To keep your Daily Politics mug


slug. We're not sure if it is machine washable and it may shrink


if washed. It was originally part of Hazel Blears' winter wardrobe. Just


joking. Very cheeky. This can be yours along


with our own Daily Politics mug. Just listen to our JoCo. You would


be a net to miss it. Oh, dear! -- a knit.


We will remind you how to enter in a minute. Mine is smaller than yours.


Can you remember when this happened? If something finished? No, no, no.


-- is hunting finished. And all that standards have slipped


in Washington over the last few years but for a lawyer, you are


remarkably cavalier with any idea of justice.


To be in with a chance of winning a Daily Politics mug, and the tea cosy


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snoring. And Alan, you are going to knit it for the end of the petition.


By wanting a jumper. Anyway, is this a politics programme


or a daytime knitting show? Coming up, it is almost midday. Big Ben is


behind me. A sunny, autumnal day. With just a tinge of air


conditioning. By ministers questions is on its way and James Landale is


here. A cornucopia of things that could happen today. What will they


do? There is a lot. But there is nothing dominant or obvious. Ed


Miliband has done very well on the cost of living so think the


temptation will be to on their patch. But because of yesterday's


committee hearings, there is not much for him to bite on. He might


stay on the same subject or they might go to water or something else


like that. Mr Cameron could have fun on labour's Makkah nations over


HS2? Definitely that is rich pickings for him. -- imaginations.


Hopefully he will have a sub editor who will tell you not to use that


word. It is an area where Labour are vulnerable. There is an opportunity


for that and eye would be amazed if the whips have not got an MP to ask


that question. Straight to the Commons. This morning, I have had


meetings with my colleagues and eye There are over 1 million new jobs.


We were told that the Government has a programme which would clearly lead


to the disappearance of a million jobs. Isn't it time for the person


who said that to admit they were wrong and apologise.


My honourable friend is absolutely right. The British economy is on the


mend. We see unemployment coming down, the numbers in work are going


up. Our growth rate is now forecast to be almost three times as fast as


German growth. And frankly, the party opposite and the Leader of the


Opposition told us we would lose a million jobs. He was absolutely


wrong and it is time he got to his feet and told us he was wrong.


Mister Speaker, having listened to the select committee hearing


yesterday, can the Prime Minister tell us, what is the difference...


THE SPEAKER: Order. Can I tell the Prime Minister's PBS, his role is to


not his head in the appropriate places and fetch and carry notes. No


noise required. Mister Miliband. Having listened to the hearing


yesterday, can the Prime Minister tell us what the differences between


his policy on energy and that of the energy companies? Not a word of


apology about predicting 1 million jobs lost. They got it wrong and


they can't bear to admit it. THE SPEAKER: Order. The question


must be heard and the answers must be heard, however long it takes.


Some people need to get used to the fact that that is what the public


would like to see from the House of Commons. Prime Minister. The energy


market needs more competition and lower levies and charges to drive


profits and prices down. At what we have learned, Mister Speaker in the


last week, is that this competition should include switching. At the


dispatch box, he said, I will tell the Prime Minister what is a con,


telling people that the answer is to switch suppliers. But what did we


find out over the last few days? He switched his supplier. Yes! He went


for one of these insurgent companies to cut his bills. Isn't it typical?


He comes here every week and attacks Tory policy. He goes home and he


adopts Tory policy to help his own family. Mister Speaker...


The only thing people need to do, if they want somebody to stand up


against the energy companies, they need to switch the Prime Minister,


and that is what they know. Now, as the unofficial spokesman for the


energy companies, maybe he can answer the question that they could


not answer yesterday. Can he explain why, when wholesale prices have


hardly moved since a year ago, retail prices are rising by around


10%? Because we need both competition and rolling back the


cost of charges. Switching is part of competition. And the company that


he switched to has this to say about his energy freeze: They said, "a


policy like this is potentially problematic for an independent


provider. Bluntly, it could put me under." So that is his policy, not


listening to the people providing his energy, but having less choice,


less competition and higher prices. It is the same old Labour. He had no


answer to the question. And I will its play on something quite simple


to him. Most energy companies do not want a price freeze. And most


consumers do. That is why the energy companies are against the price


freeze. He is so on the side of the energy companies that we should call


them the big seven, the Prime Minister and the big six energy


companies. Now, in opposition, he said this: "There is a problem in


the relationship between wholesale and retail prices. The first thing


you have got to do is give the regulator the teeth to order that


those reductions are made. That is what we would do." Mister Speaker,


why, when it comes to the energy companies, has he gone from Rambo to


Bambi in four short years? Who was it who gave us the big six?


Yes! When Labour first looked at this, there were almost 20


companies, but because of his stewardship, we ended up with six


players. Now, they talk about a price freeze, but down the corridor,


they have been voting for a price rise. That is right, they voted for


a decarbonisation target that everyone accepts would rise prices.


If he wants a price freeze, why has he just voted for a price rise? It


is just so hard to keep up with this Prime Minister on green levies,


isn't it? This is what he was saying in January. Believe it or not, he


was boasting about the size of his green levies. He said this, I kid


you not, he said, and I quote, "eco-was many times the size of the


scheme it replaced, so when it comes to green, the bigger the better" and


now he says the opposite. On competition, here is the problem.


Here is the problem... He wants a review on energy policy, but that is


exactly what the energy companies want, a long enquiry, kicking the


problem into the long grass. How well a review that reports next


summer help people to pay their bills this winter? --how will. We


want to competition enquiry that starts right away, that is our


policy. The point about voting for a price rise, he has the answer,


because this is what the former Labour energy spokesman, Lord


Donoghue, said in the House of Lords, and he should listen... "I


have never spoken against a Labour amendment in 28 years in this House,


but I am troubled by the consequences for ordinary people.


The amendment will raise the cost of living and is in conflict with a


future price freeze. " That is from Labour's and policy spokesman of the


past in the House of Lords. The fact is the whole country can see he is a


one trick pony and he has run out of road. Let me tell him, if he wants


to talk about what people are saying...


THE SPEAKER: Order. Can we try to recover some semblance of calm? It


would be good for the health, beneficial to people's wellbeing.


They must try and grow up, even those below the age of 60. His own


former environment Secretary, the man in charge of the climate change


committee, says his figures are false. That is what he says. Instead


of having a review, he has got an opportunity to do something for the


public next week. He has got an energy bill going through


Parliament. Instead of sitting on his hands, he could amend that Bill


to institute a price freeze now. We will support a price freeze, why


does he not act? Because it is not a price freeze, it is a price con. And


the fact is, he is hiding behind this economically illiterate policy


because he cannot talk about the economy, because it is growing. He


cannot talk about unemployment, because it is falling. He cannot


talk about the deficit, because it has come down. He has nothing else


to say, he is a weak leader with no ideas.


I will tell you who is weak, it is this Prime Minister, too weak to


stand up to the energy companies. Nothing less than a price freeze


will do. Because this is the only way that we can deal with the energy


companies overcharging. It is time he started acting like a Prime


Minister, standing up for consumers and stopped acting like a PR man for


the energy companies. I will tell you what is weak and were too weak


to stand up and admit their economic failures. Too weak to stand up to


Len McCluskey, who tried to wreck the Scotland's petrochemical


industry, and too weak to stand up to the Shadow Chancellor... Order!


Mister Quinn, recover your composure, man. You are wholly out


of control. Prime Minister. Letters just examined what has happened with


high speed to this week. The Shadow Chancellor to ring the radio studios


telling everyone it won't go ahead -- high-speed two. What has he done,


cowered in his office, too weak to make a decision. Britain deserves


better than that flopped. -- ban that lot.


Last year, businesses, yes businesses, created three times as


many jobs in the private sector as well ask in the public sector. So is


it not high time, Prime Minister, that those who made the mistake


predictions that we would not be able to create as many Private jobs


that were lost in the public sector should go on to admit that they got


it wrong? My honourable friend is absolutely right. They should admit


that they got it wrong. Let us remember what the Leader of the


Opposition said as late as March 2012. He said, "you are not going to


be able to replace the jobs in the public sector quickly enough in the


private sector. We now have 1 million more people employed in our


country. 1.4 million private sector jobs, but they are too weak to admit


they got it wrong. I'm grateful, Mister Speaker. Does the Prime


Minister believed that the accident and emergency crisis in the NHS has


anything to do with the fact that he has cut 6,000 nurses since coming to


power? What we see in the NHS is 23,000 fewer nonclinical grades,


bureaucrats and managers, taken out of the NHS, and we see 4,000 more


clinical staff, including over 5,000 more doctors, in our NHS. That is


the change we have seen. Just imagine if we had listened to labour


and cut the NHS budget. We believe in the NHS and we have invested in


it. How does the chamber of commerce reported that the last economic


survey shows real business optimism, with the rise of the number of local


firms employing UK staff, a rise in UK orders an attempt cent increase


in staff. Theirs my right honourable friend agree that this is evidence


that the Government's economic plan is working and the party opposite


got it wrong. My honourable friend is right. We had to take tough


decisions, but growth is there. Unemployment is falling, we have


4,000 more businesses in this country and if we had listened to


the Shadow Chancellor, who said we were in for a lost decade of growth,


we would have higher debts, higher interest rates and it would be the


same old outcome under the same old Labour. In a recent survey, 75% of


people said they switch their heating of on one or more occasion


-- switched their heating off on one or more occasion last winter. Does


that rapidly to Prime Minister expect that to go up or down this


year -- does the Prime Minister. We have maintained the winter payments,


the cold weather payments and increase benefits the poorest


families get in this country. That is the action we have taken and we


can only afford to because we have taken tough and sensible decisions


on the economy. A few days ago, I launched the business case for the


electrification of the Harrogate and Knaresborough rail line, for more


trains, faster services and better rolling stock. After the last


Government electrified just nine miles in 13 years, can my right


honourable friend continue to prioritise rail electrification? He


makes a very good point, the last Government did just nine miles of


electrification in 13 years. Absolutely pathetic. We are putting


?1 billion into modernising railways in the North of England. And let's


just look again at this issue of HS2. It needs cross-party agreement


to make this important infrastructure scream go ahead, and


what a pathetic spectacle this week -- infrastructure scheme. One if


they are forward, then they are against it and the Leader of the


Opposition is too weak to make a decision. I have come across a very


interesting interview given to The Times by the Prime Minister, during


which he stopped off at his constituency office, to "turn the


heating on, so it is nicer when I get back this afternoon" . How many


of my constituents does he think will afford such niceties as we


approach this winter? His constituents will understand that


their price freeze is a price can't. Prices would go up beforehand,


prices would go up afterwards and has he himself has admitted, they


wouldn't keep their promise because they don't control gas prices. That


is why everybody knows it is a con. One of my constituents from


Carmarthen left school at 16 and was told that the only choice had was


which prison he might end up in. Four years later he is running a


chocolate company. Does the Prime Minister agree that the record


number of new business start-ups is as much down to people like him than


the excellent work of the Chancellor? I joined my my


honourable friend in paying tribute to his constituent and the way he is


turning his life around. Of course Labour do not want to hear about


success stories. They do not care. They do not care about enterprise


and small businesses. But it is this enterprise and small business that


is turning around our country. There is a new flat launched in my


constituency, built as a result of public money under the government's


affordable housing scheme. It is a two bedroom flat and it is ?720,000.


Does the Prime Minister believe this to be affordable and if so, to whom?


We need to build more houses in our country and that is why we are


reforming the planning system which they posed. That is why we have


introduced helped by, which they opposed. That is why we introduced


extra money into affordable housing. They oppose that. They are


the build absolutely nothing party and as a result, housing will become


less affordable. Over the last few decades, hundreds of millions of


people have been lifted out of poverty in India and China. As those


people have increased their living standards, the energy demands have


increased. Would my honourable friend agree that if we are to have


sustainable, long-term energy, the deal which the Prime Minister


heralded is a good idea? Think it is an important step forward to


encourage inward investment into our country to fund our nuclear


programme. That actually means we're going to have dependable low carbon


electricity in the future. And to the people who oppose foreign


investment, the party opposite, with all the flip-flops they have done


this week, I would not be surprised if they started to oppose nuclear


energy, too. Foreign investment means we can use our firepower to


build hospitals, schools, roads and where Rose. -- and railways. Does


the Prime Minister believe that Royal mail was undervalued? When you


consider that Royal mail, in the past, was losing billions of pounds,


the whole country is far better off with it in the private sector. I've


just talked about flip-flops and there is another one from the Labour


Party. Who was it that said we needed to privatise Royal mail?


Anyone, anyone? Where is Peter Mandelson when you need him? They


said we needed private capital and I'd agree. They said we needed


private management and I'd agree. And it has taken this government to


deliver the policy. With 450,000 new businesses, we have seen the biggest


monthly fall on employment -- in unemployment on record. Unemployment


is down by 30%. Would the Prime Minister agreed that by supporting


businesses to grow, we can and do labour's legacy of unemployment? My


honourable friend is right. Whoever is in government right now would


have to be making difficult reductions in the public sector.


That will obviously leads to the reduction of public sector jobs. We


need a strong private sector recovery and that is what we have


seen. 1.4 million more jobs in the private sector, meaning that overall


there are 1 million more people employed in our country. That is 1


million reasons to stick to our plan and reject the medicine suggested by


the party opposite. Current legislation to protect agency


workers was designed to stop the export Asian migrant workers and


protect the wages and conditions our indigenous workers. I know the Prime


Minister has spoken on this issue but can he reassure the House that


he will resist any temptation to download even further protection for


agency workers? You already has! I want to see more jobs in this


country, and that means making sure we keep our flexible workforce. Of


course, what the honourable gentleman did not tell us is that he


chairs the Unite group of Labour MPs. Perhaps he ought to declare


that when he steps up. And while he is at it, perhaps you can have a


word with Len McCluskey and say that we need to have a proper enquiry


into what happened in Unite, with what happened in Grangemouth.


Because we know the leader of the Labour Party is too weak to do it


himself. The economy is growing by 1.5% in the last six months. During


that time, in my constituency the number of job-seekers has fallen by


a fifth. Raising living standards requires rater productivity from a


skilled workforce. But in Chippenham, hopes were -- five years


ago when the national college building programme ran out of money.


We'll be Prime Minister join me in backing Wiltshire College's bid to


rebuild our campus, for local students to gain the skills that the


employers demand? I agree with what my honourable friend said. We


remember the disappointment when labour's planned investment


collapsed in so many colleges. It is this government that is now putting


in the money to see that expansion and improvement happens. And I'm


sure that can happen in Wiltshire as well as Whitby. Since two thirds of


the green levies on energy bills were established under this


government, why is the Prime Minister attacking himself? Many of


the green levies were put in place by the party opposite. Let me remind


him that one of the first acts of this government was to take the ?179


renewable heat initiative, which the leader of the Labour Party wanted to


put on every single persons bill in the country, we took that off the


bill. We'll be Prime Minister join me in congratulating the workforce


at Toyota in my constituency, as well as manufacturers across the


country, whose hard work has ensured that car production went up by 10%


in the last year? I certainly join my honourable friend and I remember


my own visit to Derby. They do not want to hear good news about


manufacturing! They do not want to hear good news about the car


industry! This country is now a net exporter of cars and we should be


congratulating the workforce at Toyota. We should be congratulating


the workforce at Land Rover and praising what they are doing at


Nissan. These companies are leading the real industrialisation of our


country. I was at the works on Monday were the many is leading to


more jobs and British at -- the Mini is leading to more jobs and


productivity. Launching a report on electoral conduct yesterday, there


was shocking examples of racism and discrimination during election


campaigns. We'll be Prime Minister back our call to get political


parties, the Electoral Commission and the equality and human rights


commission to work more proactively now in areas of tension so that the


next election can be a battle of ideas and not race hate. I welcome


the report of the enquiry into electoral conduct. I will study the


report closely. If there is anything we can do on a cross-party basis to


keep this racism out of politics, then we should do so. Fax to the


regional growth fund, ?8.8 million is being spent reopening the real


link, cutting travel times between Burnley and Manchester in half. But


better real regulations are also vital for the South of England. Does


the Prime Minister agree with me that it is outrageous for the party


opposite to be challenging HS2 at the current time, putting jobs in


jeopardy? My honourable friend is right to stand up for his


constituents and the North of England. Cos there is a real danger


with Labour that they are letting down the North of England, letting


down the Midlands. Let me remind the Shadow Chancellor of what he said


about these transport investments. He said this. Nowhere is consensus


more essential than on our national infrastructure. He said this, "


Successive governments have docked or delayed vital decisions on


infrastructure, allowing short-term politics to get in the way". That is


what he said his own words. He is found guilty of short termism and


petty politicking. Rather than looking at the national interests. I


sensed that the Prime Minister... The Prime Minister is prepared to


gamble, along with the Justice Minister, on the proposals for the


probation service, especially in light of the tests and trials being


called to a halt. Is he prepared to gamble, especially with the lives


and safety of my constituents, and other people in this country? And


will his gambling wok holdout? What we want is a service that is much


more is focused on stopping reoffending and getting results. And


also making sure that we give people rehabilitation from the moment they


leave prison. That does not happen today but it is interesting. Body


six minutes past 12 and not one question from Labour on the economy.


The have got nothing to say. They have nothing to offer and they are


embarrassed that prediction after prediction was completely wrong.


Like my right honourable friend, I agree... Order! A question from the


honourable member must, and it will, be heard. Like my honourable friend,


I welcome the fall in unemployment. Indeed, down to 3.7% in my


constituency. But will he recognise with me that one of the biggest


problems is young people with special needs, particularly autism,


getting into work. And will he congratulate the London Borough of


Redbridge and the interface parents group, where eight project has


started with the first young people with special needs in work? I


certainly pay tribute to Redbridge and to all those who help children


with special needs. We are trying to focus on those who need the help


most. Have a question on the economy for the Prime Minister. -- I have.


How about this? Does the Prime Minister agree with his own advisers


that the government's youth contract is bailing to tackle the appallingly


high levels of youth unemployment? -- failing to tackle. What we have


seen with the youth contract is thousands of young people to work


through our work experience scheme. It has been more successful in the


future jobs fund but has cost six times as little through the youth


contract. We have also seen 20,000 young people get work opportunities.


That is why the youth claimant count is coming down so rapidly. There is


far more to do to get young people into work at the fact that we have


backed over 1.5 million apprenticeships is a sign of how


much we care about getting young people back to work. Does the Prime


Minister agree with President Obama that there needs to be additional


constraints on how we use intelligence, that we need to more


effectively weigh the risks and rewards of our activities? Will he


follow the Prime Minister -- President's leads? I have said this


in the House before and I'll repeat it again. We will always listen to


what other countries have to say but I believe that in Britain we have a


good way of having intelligence and security services overseen by a


Parliamentary committee, having their work examined by intelligence


commissioners and ensuring that the act under a proper legal basis. I'd


take those responsibilities very seriously believe we have a good


system in this country and we can be proud of the people that work in it


and oversee it. We have recently learned that energy security in this


country has been outsourced to the Chinese and French, that pensions


will be frozen this year and we have no control over the big six. Does


the Prime Minister had any regrets about the cack-handed privatisation


of the utilities by the former Tory government and the decimation of our


call industry? He backed a firm that never built a


single power station. I think we should welcome foreign investment to


build these important utilities so we can use our power to run


hospitals and the things we need. There are in my constituency soon to


be 100 wind turbines. These turbines are paid for by my constituents, but


they are not constricted or creating jobs in my constituency. Tension he


ensure that the changes in green subsidy that I can he ensure that


the changes in green subsidy are here in the United Kingdom. We will


aim to retard that investment. Will the Prime Minister join me in paying


tribute to the positive role played by trade unions in the work of the


automotive Council which has brought about a change in the UK car


industry. I think it has been very successful and where trade unions


play a positive role, I will be the first prize. But where, frankly, we


have a real problem with a rogue trade unionist at Grangemouth who


nearly brought the Scottish petrochemical industry to its knees,


we need to have a proper enquiry. A Labour enquirer. If they had any


courage, any vision, any decision-making they would need to


recognise they have to have an enquiry to get to the bottom of what


happened. Well, and prime ministers questions,


they were still shouting at the end the Prime Minister firing on all


cylinders -- at PMQs. The usual confrontation across the dispatch


box was dominated by energy prices, which will probably not go away as


the winter weather comes in and other energy prices announced what


their prices are. You can tell the level of debate that was reached


when the primaries the called Ed Miliband a one trick pony who has


run out of road -- when the Prime Minister called Ed Miliband. I am


not sure ponies use the road. He described the Prime Minister is a PR


man for the energy companies. Mister Cameron was once a PR man, but not


for the energy companies, it was another monopoly he was a PR man


for, called ITV at the time. That is a cheeky aside.


Let a return to energy. The emails are about that issue, although some


people are getting fed up with the subject being dominated by energy.


Ian Franken says that if all the Prime Minister has got personal


attacks on Ed Miliband, he has lost the argument. This one says that


Cameron is hard to listen to and he has no answer to the energy


companies and is part of the problem.


Colin in Rugby says that Ed Miliband sees to change the record and his


continued questions and sound bites about energy prices show a distinct


lack of awareness about everything else on the political agenda. Ray


Jones from Ashford says that Labour is clearly a one trick pony. All


predictions of doom and gloom have failed so their only card to play is


energy, and they have even got that wrong, as they have no answer as to


what happens in a rising market. Now, the interesting thing, James,


was that all of the discussion was about the energy price freeze,


proposed by Ed Miliband. We know, putting aside the economic summit it


is a politically popular move. -- putting aside the economics of it.


There was no viable alternative from the Prime Minister, even though a


week ago he said he would float the idea of reducing the green levies


and cut bills. So although the Prime Minister did better than last week,


the argument was still on Ed Miliband's territory. I think we saw


an attempt to move that argument away by the Prime Minister. Ed


Miliband back on the same subject but repeatedly, the Prime Minister


tried to draw the gym and back to the economy. The Conservatives were


better organised than last week -- draw the argument back. They were


trying to drag the subject back, to say that Labour, by focusing solely


on energy prices, want to talk about it as an exclusion of everything


else. But you are right, they will not be able to draw it away from


that until they have cancers. The Autumn statement is not another four


weeks -- until they have the answers. The Autumn statement is


another four weeks, and looking at the green levies and the social


policy, but also the actual transportation, the network costs,


which is a large part of that, they are talking about looking at that to


see if they can do anything to reduce costs. These are the


distribution and transmission costs, they are regulated by off game,


because it is the National Grid -- Ofgem, whereas they have no power to


regulate retail prices, unlike some regulators in France. Ofgem does


regulate these prices and there is a bigger chunk of the bill, because


they are having to rebuild a transition system to bring in all of


the offshore and onshore wind farms, and solar power, which have gone to


areas, unlike the new nuclear stations, which are where the grid


already exists. I think they are looking across the piece, they know


they have to come up with something, but equally, they have to come up


with something that is simple and there has to be a figure at the end


of the day. However they cook it, there has to be a number at the end


that it can be reduced by. The difficulty the Labour is having set


the political weather, since the Labour conference and Ed Miliband's


speech, is it now gets overtaken by events. The Government has had the


time to look at ways not just freezing the bills but actually


cutting the bills. The problem for the Government is they seem to make


it up as they go along. We feel a very simple policy, which is to


freeze energy prices, woodwork, but this week the Prime Minister is


talking about green levies and the distribution network. The reality


for people, and I don't think they will get bored with this, because as


soon as they bills land on their match at home, they look at it


gassed, -- soon as their bills land on their match at home, they look at


it gassed. As winter approaches, soon as we get a cold weather snap,


nobody once... A lot of people will die, that is a reality. That is what


we are saying. We want the Government to act now, that is what


we are saying. The Government can act now, you are in Government, you


are the party in power. Do something about it. Is an energy person in the


past, the promise of a freeze is a straightforward political life. --


is an energy person. Because of global prices rising, you cannot


deliver that freeze without very expensive subsidies and he's


refusing to commit to that. The real issue is whether, in the face of


expensive global energy, we have a market which is a fare structure,


delivering a competitive environment where people can choose and where


companies can give the most efficient prices. There, I think, is


a perfectly fair argument, saying let's get an independent group like


Ofgem to say here is how it works, here are the facts. Are they saying


there is a cartel in this report? No. What we are seeing is that in


the course of the last two years, seven new companies have come into


the utility supply. We want more companies so it is not dominated by


the big six. This is an issue the both of you and the whole political


class in Westminster, and it is this, at the moment green levies and


those associated with green levies are adding around 10% to add bills,


around ?112, you both voted for. You can reject those... Let me finish my


point. You have also put into the pipeline, both you and the climate


change act and you win the coalition came to power, increases in these


levies including the carbon floor tax, which will increase these


levies so that they become 30% of our bill by 2020, and well at 40% to


the price of electricity -- will add 40%. So it is a strange thing when


you are lecturing the energy companies to do something about


prices went between you, you have consciously added to the nation's


energy bills. That is partly true. As you say, both parties, us, when


in Government, and the coalition Government, have introduced green


levies, which we have all supported and why? Because there are social


policy objectives alongside it. See God but you are adding 40% to the


bills. -- you are adding 40% of the bills. In the long run, it will


reduce bills and it has contributions towards some of the


fuel poor. Are we going to abandon that? People wouldn't be fuel poor


if they didn't have to pay these extra levies. And the argument that


both parties use, that fewer bills are actually going to be less in


2020, involves that a Government department has heroic consumptions.


Per unit of retail electricity, the price rises by 40%. Things in the


pipeline, the two parties have agreed to. You have a fair point in


some aspects, which is, perhaps over the last 15 years, we have put more


and more obligations onto the utility companies, be it for


addressing a fuel of a teak, rue flagging, -- fuel poverty, roof


lagging, and now we say, we hate you, you are expensive. So we have


forced on them one economic model and blamed them for the


consequences. David Cameron is saying we are going to look at that


again, in terms of green levies and is it right that by putting the


burden on them, it is the consumer who pays? One of the things the


Government did do was abolish the warm front scheme, a subsidy for the


fuel poor paid out of taxation. It was transferred to the bill payer. A


final thought, James? The Government had to come up with something fairly


soon. We know they are working hard. The question is whether or not they


ultimately produce enough to match Labour's policy in a retail, simple,


straightforward on the door sends, around all of the incredibly


complicated organs. And there will be a Daily Politics special on


December the 4th about the Autumn statement. Something to look forward


to. Now, yesterday, we spoke to prominent British Muslim Mo Ansar.


His meeting with the former leader of the English Defence League leader


Tommy Robinson was the subject of the BBC documentary. They have


campaigned against what they see as the Islamic occasion of Britain.


Tommy Robinson is explaining his view of the Koran. You can take


sexual slaves. You can take outside of marriage... Tell me that path. I


don't think you can find it. It is nice to see you reading it, but it


is not making a difference, because you distorted. Marry those that


please you of other women, two, three or four. If you fear that that


not be just, take what your right arm possesses, like slaves. Where


does it say sexual slaves? Where does it say it? Don't distorted?


Yesterday, when I spoke to Mo Ansar, he had this to say. I did


have an impression of Tommy. I had painted him as some kind of figure


like Goebbels, the 21st century. And he wasn't like that? Spending time


with someone always humanises them and there is a soft side to Tommy,


although his rhetoric has been disturbing and the impact he has had


on Muslim communities across the country has been disturbing. Like


many people, Tommy is a complex character. Mo Ansar talking about a


Tommy Robinson, who is in the studio now. He described you as a complex


character. How would you describe him, having spent time with him? I


liked him, personality wise. What I found was that he was in denial.


Even at the end of watching his interview yesterday, when they


brought a grooming, he was trying to push the problem away and when


Muslim leaders are given platforms, he spends 95% of his time talking


about Islam phobia and all of these different things from people who


criticise the ideology. If he spent that time tackling the problems


within the community, we might be getting somewhere. But Mo was to be


seen as a defender of Muslims and Islam, rather than accepting that we


have these problems. He has this image of me, that is the image that


everybody has been given of all these ordinary people. Why did you


leave the English Defence League? I felt it was the way forward. For


years, I had been making a noise and trying to get issues that


working-class people were feeling in their communities and then I did not


want to... I wanted to be part of the solution. You think the EDL is


not working. Are you ashamed that you were part of it? I am not, I am


a proud that I started it and it has given people a platform but we need


to solve the problems, rather than just making noise about it. Moving


forward is working with reformists and true moderates within the


Islamic community who are willing to accept the problems. Have you


actually changed your views? The documentary was all about you going


on a journey of supposedly enlightenment that culminates in


your decision to quit the EDL Mobutu tweeted just before the programme


that your views haven't changed. I was 20 61 started this movement. I'm


on a journey at the present. -- when I started. A lot of my views have


been distorted. What is your goal now? Initially, you wanted Muslims


out of Britain. You have accepted that that cannot happen. That has


never been my goal. Never. My goal now, there is a massive gap.


Working-class communities have been pushed to the side and people do not


feel part of the fabric of the society. That is not the fault of


the Muslim community? There is a reason why working-class children


are now the biggest underachievers in this country. There is a reason.


People do not feel they have the opportunities. A lot of the


opportunity for people to turn to the far right is coming from


resentment that they are seeing. My goal is to give a healthy platform


for debate, rather than being on the streets, to bring these issues to


the forefront. They need to be debated and people need to see that


they are getting somewhere with them. Do you still regard Islam as a


religion of violence and fascism? I think it is untrue that it is a


religion of peace. It is not factual. You believe it has a


belligerent of violence? It is down to the interpretations of that


Scripture. When I met Osama Hassan from Quilliam, he was a very


religious man. He is not calling for violence but we cannot say that


people who wish to interpret it for violence can do that. I do not


understand what you're trying to achieve. You to stop the


Islamification of Britain, as you see it? I saw a poll that said that


up to 40% of people believe that this will end in an inevitable


violent conflict between Muslims and non-Muslims. That is terrifying.


People will start preparing for that. I do not want the communities


we live in to be the communities affected by this conflict. But you


believe that it is a religion of violence? Do you want to ban the


building of mosques? We must regulate mosques. We should not have


Iran and Saudi Arabia and Qatar dictating which form of Islam,


extremist sects, to move forward. We need a platform. Mo Ansar is the


wrong person to be pushing forward because he does not accept the


fault. You have to ask a question about an Islamic state, governed by


sharia law, do you believe that you should chop off hands? When he was


pushed, he could not get out of it. In that clip, you are distorting the


fact to fit your narrative. You distorted the facts on a part of the


Koran, on keeping women as sexual slaves, and that is how you have


interpreted it to link it to the cases of Pakistani men grooming


white girls. Do you stand by that? In the Koran, it says 14 times that


they can take non-Muslim women as slaves. We have to explore the


reasons for why 90% of these grills are men and Muslim men called


Mohammed. Maybe the men that are justifying their crimes, in large


groups of brothers and cousins and friends from work, that is not


normal paedophilia. That is a problem. We have to look into this


root cause. Do you speak to anyone in the English Defence League? I


have buried my head in the sand because this is a community. It is


where I'll live and it is the people I see on a daily basis. I have upset


a lot of people but and people who understand the causes, the cause is


not to have conflict. Do you still speak to people from the EDL? I have


not for two weeks but will I, yet? --. I think the only way to solve


the problem is to show people from the English Defence League that this


is the way. I believe that they should work and listen and reform


and meet my breasts. Do you want to see -- mate more -- meet my breasts.


Are you aware that you are more likely to die in hospital at the


weekend than during the week? The government wants to change this and


provide full-time care seven days a week. It would have thought that,


and NHS with seven day a week care? But can we afford it and can the NHS


treat people all the time? Thomas Hughes Hallett, the chair of the


Institute of Global Health Innovation, thinks that some


services need to be provided by charities. This is his soapbox.


Most of us look after our cars. We have a contract with society to keep


them healthy, while they are on the road. And so we get MOT is and


servicing. -- MOTs. If only we treated our bodies so well, we could


keep them off the scrapheap or avoid unnecessary trips to A We need to


take more responsibility for our health and the health of our


families, to keep the health service ticking over for everyone. As a


society, we have to understand that if we expect the NHS to cope under


the ever increasing wave of demand, it will soon break down. To stop


this happening, we need to make some tough choices now about what we


really need for free from the health service. And the rest, well, we


should accept that we need to pay for it, like extras on a car. And we


need to provide more for each other in our own communities. For example,


the voluntary sector provides services like bereavement


counselling or play therapy we need to see more examples of this instead


of murdering -- burdening the service. In my study, what stood out


is that people want to take back control of their own care. What they


need is Saturn have or trip advisors to point them to what is


most successful. Chemists, the community support centres, to steer


them away from the NHS when they do not need it and sometimes do not


want it. That way we can keep the health service on the road for


ourselves and future generations. And Thomas Hughes Hallett joins us


now. Welcome to the show. You mentioned bereavement counselling


and play therapy come examples of services that the voluntary sector


could bring in. Where would you draw the line? The evidence that I'd took


in Essex demonstrated that the people of Essex recognised fully


that what they want from the state is support and emergency care. And


they are realists. They know that in 2030, instead of 35,000 people being


dependent on social care, 135,000 people are going to be dependent,


and the state cannot possibly afford to provide that. For the sake of


this argument, let's accent that that is true. Where would you draw


the line? -- lets accept. Should gastric band surgery be on the NHS?


Yes, if there is a clinical needs. Acupuncture? Acupuncture, I am a big


fan of acupuncture and my wife uses it a lot for her back. But the


reality is that there are lots of people out there who would be


prepared to offer voluntarily, care that is not necessarily clinical in


vitro visual sense. As Chief Executive of Mary Creagh, I had


100,000 volunteers who supported us every year, from physiotherapists to


surgeons. Berwick in Spain is? If there is a physical reason, yes. --


Marie Curie. -- varicose veins. Fertility treatment? This is what


makes your thesis or difficult because where do you draw the line?


People might accept in theory, the argument. That the NHS should get


back to basics. But if we go down that road, the question I am asking


is the question that will need to be answered. They will. And difficult


questions are going to have to be answered. But what I have to be


answered. But what I've learned from talking to hundreds and hundreds of


people over the last 12 months is that the public is up for it. It is


the politicians who are shying away. Alan, where are you on this? It is


free of the point of need and that will not change. But demand exceeds


supply other has to be a process for determining what is needed. At the


moment, everything is done on the NHS? Not absolutely everything. As


Tom says... But you expect it. Lots of people are going to Osteopaths


and paying themselves. But for the mainstream medical needs of any


person, the health service... But he is not arguing about that. You were


saying for four -- you are saying that for that to continue, some of


this other stuff will be have to moved off balance sheet. I was asked


by the government to do a review of the services that the government


should provide for end of life care and published that report years


ago, which made it absolutely clear what the government would provide,


what the voluntary sector would have to step forwards to provide, and


what people would have to provide for themselves. That was accepted. I


have to say, this is the thin end of the wedge. They will have real


problems if you are going to start charging because certain things will


be charged and the fundamental principle of the NHS is that it is


free at the point of use. If you start charging, you will have a


2-tier NHS and the purist will be excluded from some treatments will


stop that is not what I was saying. But that is the consequence of what


you are proposing. No one is mentioning charging. That is the


consequence. I've spent several days in Canvey Island, working with


people who are coming together to provide community support networks


to support the professionals to deliver better care to the ageing


population. But would that be enough people out there to do that?


Absolutely. People want the state to be honest with them. They want state


to tell them precisely what they will offer free at the point of


delivery. So some of these things will be charged for? They could be


and people, many of them are happy to pay. High Court, if I could gets


to see a doctor at 6pm at night, when I cannot currently, I might be


paired to pay for it. What is happening is that 40% of the people


by interview in Essex now no longer go to the state as their first point


of contact for health care. 25% of pharmacists, 15% Google. The


chemists provided for free, for free! The Tories support this? Will


leave this question hanging. I have already entered it. Here is a big


political question. Is it? Wait for it. Who is the net one and who is


the plural one? Our reward for the best guest of the day goes to that


woolly wonder, Alan Duncan. Here is taking up the Daily Politics crush a


challenge. We were filming you during PMQs. You are looking at him


in action. The speed of the man. His fingers a pillar. And what was the


finished product? -- blur. It took me half an hour, and it is a bit


scrappy but I have done rather well. More Tory deception! The honest


truth... We need to give you the answer to GUESSED THE YEAR. Alan,


press it. Mike, in Romford. It is a good time for Essex. That said. The


one o'clock News is starting on BBC One. I will be on my own tomorrow


doing the Daily Politics. Yeah, me. She is going to crochet. Bye-bye.


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