24/01/2014 Daily Politics


24/01/2014

Andrew Neil has the top political stories of the day.


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Afternoon, folks, welcome to the Daily Politics. There's a cost of

:00:40.:00:50.

living crisis, say Labour. Oh, no, there isn't, say the Conservatives,

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as they release new figures they say show most people's incomes are

:00:54.:00:55.

rising. A new row over cartoons of the

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Prophet Muhammad. Could this Muslim Lib Dem candidate be forced to stand

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down after tweeting a link to the images?

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This is the scene in the House of Lords as peers debate more than 70

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amendments to the referendum bill, including one in Gaelic. Could peers

:01:15.:01:18.

be trying to sink the bill with an old-fashioned filibuster?

:01:19.:01:19.

And is this 18th-century philosopher the world's first feminist? Labour

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MP Gloria de Piero tells us why Mary Wollstonecraft is her favourite

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political thinker. All that in the next hour. And with

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us for the duration today, two of my favourite political thinkers. Well,

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of those in this studio anyway. It is a Friday! Not everyone hangs

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around. Steve Richards of the Independent, have you been sold yet?

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Me personally? Or the paper? I honestly don't know. And Isabel

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Hardman of the Spectator. Welcome to the programme. First today, you have

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probably heard of "offshoring". That is when firms move manufacturing

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abroad, usually to cut costs. But have you heard of "onshoring" -

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that's the opposite process where companies move back to the UK?

:02:28.:02:30.

That's exactly what the prime minister was trying to persuade his

:02:31.:02:34.

audience of the rich and powerful at the World Economic Forum in Davos to

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do in a speech this morning. In recent years, there has been a

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practice where companies move production to low-cost countries. We

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all know it will continue. But there is now an opportunity for the

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reverse. There is an opportunity for some of those jobs to come back. A

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recent survey of small and medium-sized businesses found that

:03:03.:03:06.

more than one in ten as thought back to Britain some production in the

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past year. Why is the prime minister making an

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issue of this? It is so marginal. Some call centres have been returned

:03:16.:03:18.

back to Britain because it was found that they were inefficient and not

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economic. But why would major manufacturing return to Britain?

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Well, he has found a phrase that is even more annoying than the global

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race with reshore. But we don't have lower energy costs. Well, he is

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trying to join up the fracking and the revival in during. This is

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happening in America. Over there, they call it the homecoming.

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Aluminium, rubber, Saran X, steel, also said heavy industries that

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America thought it had lost have been coming back. The reason? Energy

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costs in America are a third of in Europe. I assume that because it is

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so small in practice, he gets quite political in Davos. Before the

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election, he made a speech about corporate responsibility when he was

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trying to be progressive. I assume this is going to be part of a

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political message that Labour is a threat because of the burden this

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will place on business. They want to create an environment where business

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can wash. It is part of a broader message about business. As you say,

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the specifics are so small. Manufacturing by definition is

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energy intensive. We have 8000 -- 800,000 energy intensive jobs in

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this country. We have lost your production. Unless you are prepared

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to slash energy costs, they will not return, except maybe some very small

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ones with very high value added. And he did not add the sentence, we are

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going to slash energy costs to do this. It is government policy to

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double in lectures to cost between now and 2020. So I assume it is a

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party political point. As you were saying, the Chief Executive 's have

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turned on labour this week. Exact any. For some reason, he chooses

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Davos to make political manoeuvres. It would be interesting if he did it

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at a press conference in this country. But he doesn't like press

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conferences. He really doesn't. We are horrible.

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Most British workers have seen their pay rise in the last year? Really?

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That is according to new figures from the government. It is a

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challenge to Labour, who claimed that despite the return to growth,

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there is still what they call a cost of living crisis. It all comes at

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the end of a week of positive economic news for the UK economy. On

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Wednesday, new figures showed that the unemployment rate had dropped to

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7.1%, exceeding expectations and back to levels last seen in 2009. On

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Tuesday, the IMF revised up its growth forecast to 2.4%, saying that

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Britain row would grow faster this year than any other country in

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Europe. But that is not saying much. Earlier this month, it was revealed

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that inflation as measured by the consumer prices index fell to 2% in

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December. The Bank of England hit its target at last. It is the first

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time it has been at or below the government target since late 2009.

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Today the government has released data showing that most workers saw a

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real increase in their take-home pay in the last financial year. That is

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the one ending in April 2013. Mr say that take-home pay rose by at least

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2.5%, wants tax cuts have been taken into account. For some, it rose by

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as much as 4.8%. In the same period, CPI inflation was 2.4%. Labour said

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the figures are highly selective, they are only for one year and don't

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take into account changes to benefits. They said that families

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are on average ?891 worse off as a result of tax and benefit changes

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since 2010. Who is right and who is wrong, or is the truth in the

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middle? Joining me now, Rob Joyce from the Institute for Fiscal

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Studies. Let's begin with these latest government figures. They are

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clearly part of a Treasury fightback to take on the cost of living crisis

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mantra from Labour. What do you make of them? They are the right answer

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to a question. There is more than one data source. So they have gone

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to a perfectly reputable data source that tells you about earnings, and

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they compared earnings in April 2013 with earnings in April 2012. And

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over that period, earnings for most workers did grow somewhat faster

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than inflation. There are a few caveats to put alongside that. One

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is that it is a particular time period. If you look at another data

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source which gives you month by month earnings, it looks as though

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earnings growth was lower than that both just before that period and

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just after. It is also true that this is a measure of pay. They

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looked at pre-tax and post-tax pay, but they have not looked at the

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border measure of income. So it is not a comprehensive picture.

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Finally, slightly messily, there are different measures of average

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earnings. They should give you the same answers, but they don't always.

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Just to make things easy for us! Under Labour mantra that we are on

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average ?1600 worse off, that covers a longer period, takes us back to

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the election in 2010. But in its own way, it is also selective. Yes. At

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is capturing some of the very sharp falls in earnings that happened a

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couple of years ago. It is also selective in the sense that it does

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not account for benefit. If you are paying tax, a fall in your pre-tax

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income of ?1600 is a fall of less than that in your post-tax income,

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because some of that income would have taxed away anyway. But it also

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would not capture the effects of some of the cuts to in work

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benefits, so it is giving you a partial picture.

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Let's talk now to the politicians. Treasury minister cited Javid and

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the shadow business secretary, Chuka Umunna. -- Sajid Javid. They make

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quite a double act on this programme! You have the same tyres

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and probably the same shirts! You ask for the shiny head, and you have

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got them. Tweedledum and Tweedledee. Who said politics was converging?

:10:23.:10:28.

Let me be clear what you have done here. You have taken one financial

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year ending in April 2013. You have excluded the richest 10% and you

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have said that when it comes to take-home pay, the average rise was

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2.5 cent. At a time when inflation by the CPI was 2.4%. So there is a

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difference of .1%, and you are claiming that she is living

:10:52.:10:54.

standards are rising? That shows that our long-term plan is starting

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to work. But we have also said all along that there is a long way to

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go. Our country went through the deepest recession in 100 years. That

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left the country a lot poorer. People are still suffering from

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that. April were left poorer. But our plan is starting to work. Let's

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get away from the rhetoric. You are saying in the end that you have

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managed to find one year in which take-home pay was .1% higher than

:11:28.:11:37.

price rises. That is the only year that this data series is available

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for. Hopefully, it will represent a further increase in income next

:11:44.:11:47.

year. As you say, with the exception of the richest 10% in this country,

:11:48.:11:53.

take-home pay, after the tax cuts, is rising faster than inflation. But

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by .1%. Do you use decimal points to show you have a sense of humour? Do

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you think anybody out there feels" oh, last year, I was .1% better

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off" ? If you look at another piece of important news, there are those

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who are getting jobs. Employment rose by the fastest rate on record.

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If you ask those people, are they feeling better off, they would give

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a solid answer. Let's take your series and move it from April 2013

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to the rest of 2013. What happens then? Wages rise by 0.9%, and the

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CPI rises by 2%. So since your figures of April 2013, prices have

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been rising twice as fast as wages. You are not comparing like with

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like. Our figures are based on take-home pay after tax and national

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insurance. Well, national insurance has not changed. I am just saying

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what the definition of take-home pay is. If you take account of that,

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with the increase in personal allowances about to take race in

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April, it shows that take-home pay will continue to rise. What do you

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make of these figures? They are slightly misleading. Granted, we

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have just heard what the ISS were saying about where you take your

:13:30.:13:33.

figures. -- the Institute for Fiscal Studies. One of the claims was that

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people in the top 10% are the only ones who have lost out. Of course,

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that ignores the tax cut for people earning over ?100,000 got in April.

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Because that did not come in until this financial year. That is right,

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and it references by weekly earnings measures as opposed to annual. We

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can talk about statistics all we like. But what matters is how people

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feel on the street. In my constituency in Streatham, I have,

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surgery this evening and I would be flabbergasted if it is not raised

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with me that "I am working harder, I am earning less and things are

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costing more". This debate tends to ignore that we have a bigger issue

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here. We need to refashion our economy so that we actually have, as

:14:25.:14:31.

a percentage of our labour market, less low-wage, low skilled jobs. If

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you look at the OECD, the Western developed countries, we rank fifth.

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So of course we need to do things at one end of the market, with tax cuts

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and strengthening the national minimum wage and living wage. Ed

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talked about a squeezed middle from the beginning of his premiership -

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premiership! I meant to leadership. Slight slip there. But if you let me

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finish, you have got a hollowed out middle as well. He talks about his

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own constituents. In his constituency the claimant count is

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down by 22%. He should ask those people whether they feel better off.

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I am pleased that more people are in work in the constituency. Week after

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week, the measure of living standards is earnings versus

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inflation. We have seen today that one of those measures shows that

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earnings are rising in real time. I also accept there is much more to

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do. Many families are facing hard times. You need a plan that works.

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Do you act sets that, on average, people are worse off than they were

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in 2010? -- do you accept? Our economy is smaller. The economy is

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smaller. The story for different people will be different. Those who

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have found jobs, 1.6 million. There will be some people that are still

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facing very difficult times. I have met them in my own constituency. We

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need a plan that deals with those concerns. Some people are worse off.

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On average, the figures are clear. People are worse off. Some are worse

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off by around ?891. The reason people may be worse off is because

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of the great recession. We have had that to deal with. I wonder if the

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terms of trade of the argument are not going against you. You have

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moved off a little bit on the cost of living. There is obviously no

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question that living standards have been squeezed and squeezed. The

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squeeze started under Labour and has continued under this government. If

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it is a crisis, as opposed to a squeeze, white and retail sales

:17:33.:17:41.

rising by 5%? You have quite a mixed picture. On average, you are right.

:17:42.:17:45.

People are earning less. The point of this gentleman is trying to make

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is it is a mixed picture. This we emphasise the point that we need to

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rebalance the economy. -- this emphasises a game the point. I am

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pleased that in my own constituency and implement has gone down but the

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squeeze is still there. Unemployment on average is 7.1%. In London, it is

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8.1. We need to rebalance the economy geographically. We need to

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make sure we have a better range of sectors contributing to growth. We

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have terrible statistics in terms of the trade deficit. We need to

:18:32.:18:37.

increase business investment. Have we gone from flat-lining and double

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dip to rebalancing? I have been talking about this since you were in

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short trousers. You may well have. It never happens. It is absurd to

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think you can rebalance the economy when you are both committed to

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rising energy prices. Let me come back to that after you patronising

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by saying I was in short trousers. I think it was patronising. I think it

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is possible to rebalance the economy. You may not agree but we

:19:21.:19:26.

need an industrial strategy. To some extent, there was a degree of

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cross-party consensus. Lord Heseltine was talking about

:19:35.:19:41.

fashioning industry back in the 80s. One thing I would say is that, often

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we do say, I do think one thing, we do need to celebrate some things we

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do have. We at the eighth or ninth largest manufacturing nation in the

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world. We want to be doing even better. Can I just come back again?

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Can you address the question I ask? If there is a cost of living crisis,

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not a squeeze, why are retail sales rising by 5%? One of the things we

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have seen, and there is a range of reasons as to why retail sales have

:20:23.:20:25.

gone up, we have just come out of the Christmas period. One of the

:20:26.:20:32.

worrying thing is that people are beginning to dip into personal

:20:33.:20:38.

savings to buy things. If you looked at the Office for Budget

:20:39.:20:41.

Responsibility 's Autumn Statement, and if you look at economic

:20:42.:20:47.

reports, the problem we have in many respects, we cannot go back to

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business as usual, which is a model where you have growth coming from

:20:53.:20:57.

private consumption, finance and house price inflation. The problem

:20:58.:21:03.

is that growth has been primarily fuelled by private consumption.

:21:04.:21:09.

Actually we want it to be coming from a greater, more long-term,

:21:10.:21:14.

sustainable economy. How can there be a squeeze on living standards? I

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think this debate, politicians need to tread quite wary on it. I am a

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pro politics journalist. I know what both of them are trying to do. On

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this, you could debate for the next 18 months, exchanging figures.

:21:34.:21:37.

Politicians have to lead debates on Europe as all the rest of it, on

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whether voters are feeling better off or not. I think voters will have

:21:42.:21:45.

a better idea as to whether they are feeling better off or not. My sense

:21:46.:21:51.

is that in 2015, and it is only a guess, is that most of them will

:21:52.:21:55.

still be feeling insecure and worried, even if they are in work.

:21:56.:22:00.

That feel-good factor, which famously came about in the 80s, will

:22:01.:22:07.

not be there. We can exchange as many statistics as we like but that

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is my sense of what they will be feeling. I see the word, security,

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is increasingly appearing in speeches by government ministers.

:22:20.:22:25.

They want to suggest you may not be in the sunlit uplands. If you stick

:22:26.:22:30.

with the Conservatives, you can have the security of knowing the economic

:22:31.:22:34.

recovery is finished. Some of these statistics are not very good and

:22:35.:22:40.

some are better. This will undermine the economic tracks by Labour. You

:22:41.:22:45.

have just mentioned employment figures in your constituency. It is

:22:46.:22:49.

very difficult for Labour to respond to good economic needs. You can

:22:50.:22:55.

understand why the Tories want to try to undermine opponents. I always

:22:56.:23:00.

want to be clear about this. Some people will say, this is a bad

:23:01.:23:13.

thing. It is about people. Even as a constituency MP... It means I get

:23:14.:23:18.

less people coming in to see me who are worried and anxious about

:23:19.:23:22.

putting food on the plate. I have less worried people that I

:23:23.:23:28.

represent. Sometimes we do not always see things like this. I am

:23:29.:23:34.

going to give you the last word. To stick to our plan is the most

:23:35.:23:38.

important thing. To continue to address living standard problems,

:23:39.:23:44.

you need to have a plan to deal with it. That means cutting the deficit,

:23:45.:23:48.

giving people the skills they need and cutting taxes they pay. What

:23:49.:23:58.

about raising minimum wage? We have made recommendations and I hope they

:23:59.:24:02.

can come out in agreement with us. That is an important part of having

:24:03.:24:14.

a plan that will work. On that, we will leave it there. Thanks to both

:24:15.:24:19.

of you. Now, if you were watching yesterday, you will have seen our

:24:20.:24:22.

interview with the UKIP leader, Nigel Farage. The party have been

:24:23.:24:25.

prominent on the issues of Europe and Immigration but we asked him

:24:26.:24:32.

about some of the party's policies. You want a compulsory dress code for

:24:33.:24:39.

taxi drivers? Do we? That is news to me. That is not on your website,

:24:40.:24:49.

that is on one of your documents. Under the last leadership, we

:24:50.:24:54.

managed to produce a manifesto that was 486 pages long. I will not know.

:24:55.:24:59.

That is why I have said none of it stands today. Nigel Farage, talking

:25:00.:25:09.

to me yesterday. Well, he's been doing the media rounds again this

:25:10.:25:13.

morning. Earlier, he was on LBC and asked again about the party's 2010

:25:14.:25:18.

election manifesto. He did not know the manifesto because it was 486

:25:19.:25:24.

pages of excessive detail. I said, we reject the whole thing and we

:25:25.:25:28.

will start again with a blank sheet of paper. There is nothing new in

:25:29.:25:35.

that story. I did not read it. Nick, I did not read it. It was drivel.

:25:36.:25:42.

Good to see LBC following up on the daily politics. Does it matter? Does

:25:43.:25:49.

it matter? Not immediately. The focus is so much Nigel Farage and

:25:50.:25:54.

this very appealing public projection but, I think, over time,

:25:55.:26:00.

UKIP are incredibly fragile and foldable actually. Perhaps not up to

:26:01.:26:05.

the European elections, where it will be all Nigel Farage. He is a

:26:06.:26:11.

brilliant TV advocate. Afterwards, the level of scrutiny could be so

:26:12.:26:19.

much they could implode actually. In the long-term, that is probably

:26:20.:26:24.

likely to happen. The long-term get them through 2015. All people care

:26:25.:26:29.

about is what they say about Europe and immigration. In some cases, they

:26:30.:26:37.

do not care about those policies. If you talk to even the Lib Dems, who

:26:38.:26:46.

have done focus groups around Lib Dem voters, they quiz them and ask

:26:47.:26:50.

them what it was they liked about Britain. They could not think about

:26:51.:26:55.

anything but, in the end, once said, its past. That shows how difficult

:26:56.:27:01.

the squeezed message will be. You cannot say, what a load of Tosh this

:27:02.:27:09.

was! The voters do not really care. People look at the polls. Mr Cameron

:27:10.:27:13.

is more popular than the Conservative party and Labour is

:27:14.:27:18.

more popular than Mr Miliband. That will suit Nigel Farage, went it? He

:27:19.:27:25.

is in a really strong position if it is about the leaders. I wonder if it

:27:26.:27:30.

also becomes about the credibility of the party behind him. I take your

:27:31.:27:35.

point completely, it will be Cameron versus Miliband. To some extent, he

:27:36.:27:44.

is brilliant that he cannot be a solo performer. I wonder whether

:27:45.:27:50.

pre-2015, that becomes a problem for him will stop however brilliant he

:27:51.:27:54.

is as a public performer, there is a connection between party and leader

:27:55.:27:59.

in Britain. I suspect posts the Euro elections, some of the stuff that

:28:00.:28:04.

you challenged him on yesterday, and all the other things that erupt

:28:05.:28:08.

every month or so, will add up to a problem for him actually. We will

:28:09.:28:12.

leave it there. Maajid Nawaz, the Lib Dem PPC for Hampstead Kilburn,

:28:13.:28:15.

and founder of the anti-extremist think-tank Quilliam Foundation, has

:28:16.:28:18.

found himself at the centre of a controversy after tweeting a cartoon

:28:19.:28:27.

featuring Jesus and Mohammed. There's been a petition calling for

:28:28.:28:31.

him to be deselected. But, much more seriously, he's faced a campaign of

:28:32.:28:33.

online abuse, including death threats. Here is talking about the

:28:34.:28:42.

cartoon during a debate on the BBC's Big Questions. He is debating people

:28:43.:28:48.

's rights to wear T-shirts with the cartoon on them. When you do wear

:28:49.:28:53.

something that threatens our religion and our rights, that should

:28:54.:28:58.

be a concern for Muslims and others. Human rights are very important.

:28:59.:29:03.

When you do threaten our religion, we are not sitting here, mocking you

:29:04.:29:12.

in any way. That T-shirt does not threaten me whatsoever. It does not

:29:13.:29:16.

threaten my god or my fate. It does not threaten the Koran or any aspect

:29:17.:29:21.

of my religion. I do not feel threatened. Maajid Nawaz himself

:29:22.:29:25.

isn't here to talk to us. He told us he's been advised by the police not

:29:26.:29:30.

to come on the show. That is how serious it has become. But Liberal

:29:31.:29:34.

Democrat Mohammed Shafiq is in Leeds. He's one of those leading the

:29:35.:29:38.

campaign to deselect Nawaz. Kenan Malik writes about multiculturalism

:29:39.:29:45.

and free speech. A prospectively Dem candidate tweets a link to the

:29:46.:29:53.

cartoon, does not endorse it all show the cartoon, but just says he

:29:54.:29:56.

does not find it insulting, and you want to get rid of him? It is

:29:57.:30:03.

important to recognise that where he has the right to tweet that cartoon

:30:04.:30:07.

and tweaked the link to that offensive website, equally Muslims

:30:08.:30:12.

have the right to challenge that. Freedom of speech cannot be

:30:13.:30:17.

selective. We do not have the right to respond. Over the last few days,

:30:18.:30:23.

I have received death threats, racist abuse and have received a lot

:30:24.:30:27.

of hate from people who support the stance. I am not going to blame him

:30:28.:30:33.

for that stands. We are where we are now and the Liberal Democrats

:30:34.:30:36.

recognise it is a very serious issue. Potentially, there are a

:30:37.:30:42.

number of seats with a strong Muslim presents, where we could suffer.

:30:43.:30:46.

Therefore, it is right that the party looks in a serious way with

:30:47.:30:50.

negotiating and discussing this with the party. The party is absolutely

:30:51.:30:59.

right to recognise this. You call yourself a liberal. You want to hang

:31:00.:31:05.

out to dry somebody who simply publishes a link to a website. You

:31:06.:31:09.

have to recognise that where there is freedom of speech for an

:31:10.:31:12.

individual to express his views, when he is a parliamentary

:31:13.:31:18.

candidate, standing in an election, he had to behave in a responsible

:31:19.:31:24.

way. That is my view. We need to allow those discussions between

:31:25.:31:26.

ourselves and the Liberal Democrats to take place.

:31:27.:31:33.

But on Twitter, you said "we will notify all Muslim organisations in

:31:34.:31:38.

the UK of his despicable behaviour" . You will also notify Islamic

:31:39.:31:47.

countries. You are organising a lynch mob, and you? It is offensive

:31:48.:31:53.

of you to suggest that, Andrew Neil. You can't link anything to me that

:31:54.:31:58.

says I have advocated violence. Why are you notifying other Islamic

:31:59.:32:01.

countries? This is about freedom of speech should. What has it got to do

:32:02.:32:08.

with other Islamic countries? If we were going to have a discussion, it

:32:09.:32:12.

would help if you let me answer your questions. What is the answer? A

:32:13.:32:17.

Parliamentary candidate who represents the Liberal Democrats has

:32:18.:32:22.

tweeted a cartoon is offensive to Muslims. There is a petition out

:32:23.:32:28.

there. A number of people find it offensive. I think we have made

:32:29.:32:32.

progress over the last few days. Maajid Nawaz has expressed his

:32:33.:32:35.

regret for tweeting this cartoon. And their discussions between the

:32:36.:32:39.

Muslim community and the Liberal Democrats. But what has it got to do

:32:40.:32:44.

with other Islamic countries? I am not going to negotiate with the

:32:45.:32:48.

Liberal Democrats to the Daily Politics or through you. We will

:32:49.:32:51.

have those discussions. Try and answer the question. What has it got

:32:52.:32:59.

to do with other Islamic countries? It affects every Muslim around the

:33:00.:33:01.

world when a cartoon depicts the holy Prophet. If you will allow me

:33:02.:33:09.

something without interrupting, we as Muslims find the depicting of the

:33:10.:33:16.

Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, offensive and unacceptable. It is

:33:17.:33:20.

offensive to Muslims in this country and around the world. My language

:33:21.:33:24.

that I have used over the past few days has been clear. We are engaged

:33:25.:33:30.

in the political process full is politicians in this country tell us

:33:31.:33:35.

that Muslims have to engage in the political process. We have engaged

:33:36.:33:40.

in the process. For anybody to suggest that I am advocating

:33:41.:33:49.

violence is deeply offensive. But he has already been threatened with

:33:50.:33:51.

beheading and so on as a result of your tweet. I am bringing in Kenan

:33:52.:33:59.

Malik now . What do you say? Some Muslims are offended by the

:34:00.:34:03.

cartoons, others are not. I am not. I don't consider myself a Muslim, so

:34:04.:34:10.

it is no good asking me. This is not a question of offence to a

:34:11.:34:16.

community. It is about a debate within a community, and there are

:34:17.:34:22.

many Muslim communities. The reason we imagine it is about offence to a

:34:23.:34:26.

community is only because those who see it as offensive are seen as the

:34:27.:34:30.

authentic voice of the Muslim community. It is about time we saw

:34:31.:34:35.

this not as an offence to a community, but as an open debate

:34:36.:34:37.

with that community which we should have. The trouble with seeing only

:34:38.:34:43.

those who see it as offensive as the authentic voice as the Muslim

:34:44.:34:48.

community is that that is the interest defence league few, the

:34:49.:34:50.

racist view. We should be challenging the idea that all

:34:51.:34:56.

Muslims are offended by the cartoons, that all Muslims would ban

:34:57.:35:00.

such things. We should be confronting that and putting forward

:35:01.:35:09.

a liberal view of what the Muslim community are like, rather than

:35:10.:35:13.

laying along with a racist view of the Muslim community. I am not

:35:14.:35:17.

suggesting that all Muslims are offended by that. I am saying that

:35:18.:35:22.

significant numbers who signed the petition are offended by it. You

:35:23.:35:25.

talk about freedom of speech for the rest of society to tweet offensive

:35:26.:35:29.

cartoons against Muslims and Christians, and then you say to us,

:35:30.:35:32.

you can't have the right to be offended. We have been

:35:33.:35:36.

constructive. I pay tribute to the Liberal Democrats in the way they

:35:37.:35:40.

have dealt with this in the last 24 hours. We want a positive outcome.

:35:41.:35:46.

To be fair to Maajid Nawaz, he has recognised his mistake and his

:35:47.:35:51.

regret. Has he? This whole thing has been hijacked. Critics say, we are

:35:52.:36:04.

offended by it. That is part of free speech. If we prohibit things that

:36:05.:36:14.

offend some group or another, there is little we can say to each other.

:36:15.:36:18.

For example, the petition opens with the phrase of Jesus as a prophet.

:36:19.:36:27.

Most Christians would find that offensive, because for them, Jesus

:36:28.:36:32.

is the son of God. Are we going to say the petition should be removed

:36:33.:36:35.

because it is offensive to some Christians? It plays to populist

:36:36.:36:40.

petitions like the one in Holland who wants to ban the Koran on the

:36:41.:36:45.

grounds that it is offensive. Presumably, Mohammed Shafiq does not

:36:46.:36:52.

agree with that. What is fundamentally different between

:36:53.:36:58.

saying that some cartoons should not be shown because they are offensive

:36:59.:37:03.

to Muslims and saying the Koran should not be allowed because it is

:37:04.:37:06.

offensive to Christians? The point is that we need free speech, and

:37:07.:37:10.

that is free speech 41, not a particular group. -- free speech for

:37:11.:37:16.

everyone. People would be surprised that you are Liberal Democrats,

:37:17.:37:20.

because their ideological basis is John Stuart Mill. He would be

:37:21.:37:23.

turning in his grave at what you are suggesting. Andrew Neil, the Liberal

:37:24.:37:29.

Democrats are a Broadchurch. Within that broad church, there are people

:37:30.:37:35.

like myself who believe that freedom of speech comes with responsibility.

:37:36.:37:42.

We have to behave in a responsible way. The idea that you start to

:37:43.:37:47.

restrict the rights of Muslims to be offended by this is deeply

:37:48.:37:51.

patronising. We have seen ex-Muslims, cuteness, atheists, the

:37:52.:37:57.

EDL and the BNP supporting the stance of my colleague in the

:37:58.:38:01.

studio. I am not good to take any lectures about freedom of speech

:38:02.:38:04.

from those with an agenda against Muslims. We seem to be moving in a

:38:05.:38:12.

world where witch Finder General 's pop up every day now, offended at

:38:13.:38:17.

something that body has tweeted. I find the idea that you have a right

:38:18.:38:20.

to take offence at one else expressing a view quite baffling. I

:38:21.:38:24.

am a Christian, but I don't take offence at the idea that other

:38:25.:38:28.

people disagree with me. It also seems personally like me -- to meet

:38:29.:38:34.

to take too much of an effort to get annoyed because somebody disagrees

:38:35.:38:37.

with you. You might as well get on with the more important things in

:38:38.:38:40.

life than trying to get someone silenced, which is what this is. You

:38:41.:38:46.

are effectively saying he should be deselect it because his views are

:38:47.:38:52.

not valid. The death threats should be no reason to stop him from saying

:38:53.:38:56.

it. That we are in a society where if you cause offence, you are

:38:57.:39:00.

expected to close the offence down rather than move on. I have one

:39:01.:39:05.

qualification, in the sense that when you are a candidate for a

:39:06.:39:11.

party, are you tweeting as an individual, free to say whatever you

:39:12.:39:15.

want, or are you there on behalf of a party? Candidates need to be a bit

:39:16.:39:20.

more careful than the rest of us when they are tweeting. But he

:39:21.:39:29.

simply linked a tweet -- tweeted a link. Evidently, it has caused a

:39:30.:39:34.

furore. I am not justifying that, but I think that politicians, as

:39:35.:39:39.

candidates, have to be more careful. What is wrong with tweeting to a

:39:40.:39:44.

link? Personally, I see nothing wrong with it, even as they can do

:39:45.:39:48.

that. But the fact that it has caused this row, with poor old Nick

:39:49.:39:52.

Clegg, having dealt with the Rennard affair. He leaves this like a hole

:39:53.:40:00.

in the head! Evidently, it has caused a row. Kenan Malik, I will

:40:01.:40:04.

give you the final word, because Mohammed Shafiq has had a good say.

:40:05.:40:12.

What does it say about a party or a society if a political candidate is

:40:13.:40:15.

not allowed to offend anyone or even to say, I am not offended by this

:40:16.:40:21.

cartoon or this book? What does it say about a party or a society if a

:40:22.:40:25.

small group from within a particular community is allowed to dictate what

:40:26.:40:30.

is or is not acceptable to be said about that community? Thank you both

:40:31.:40:36.

for taking part in a spirited debate.

:40:37.:40:41.

Now, David Cameron apparently have a woman problem. Nick Clegg is in

:40:42.:40:43.

allsorts of trouble with Lib Dem women over the Rennard affair. The

:40:44.:40:47.

status of women in public life could not be more topical, but it is not

:40:48.:40:53.

new. In the latest of our series on political thinkers, Labour MP

:40:54.:40:57.

Glorietta Piero has chosen an 18th-century political philosopher

:40:58.:40:59.

claimed to be the world's first feminist.

:41:00.:41:17.

It is unusual, isn't it? A modern portrait of an 18th-century

:41:18.:41:22.

philosopher. This is Mary Wollstonecraft, a campaigner for

:41:23.:41:27.

women's's writes, equality and education, who was well ahead of her

:41:28.:41:32.

time. I am in London to meet an MP who was a fan of hers long before

:41:33.:41:36.

the party made her a spokesperson on just those kinds of issues.

:41:37.:41:43.

For someone who questions so much about the norms of the society they

:41:44.:41:48.

live in, it is odd that we should start her story in a church that she

:41:49.:41:54.

regularly attended. Gloria, here we are in the pews she sat in in the

:41:55.:41:59.

church she worshipped in, that hosts to be the birthplace of feminism.

:42:00.:42:02.

Why do you like Mary Wollstonecraft? I remember first

:42:03.:42:09.

reading about her as an undergraduate at university. She was

:42:10.:42:13.

the first feminist, the first person to say actually, women are not

:42:14.:42:19.

inferior to men. She was saying this at a time in a century when

:42:20.:42:23.

political writing and philosophy were totally dominated by men. She

:42:24.:42:29.

was a pioneer in a man's world. And I work in politics, so I know what

:42:30.:42:35.

it is like. Thank you, Mary Wollstonecraft. You started us off.

:42:36.:42:41.

But our expert, Doctor Elizabeth Fraser of Oxford University, is

:42:42.:42:44.

clear that there is even more to thank her for. She is a very

:42:45.:42:49.

important philosopher of education. If we think of the field that we now

:42:50.:42:55.

know as cultural is buddies, -- cultural studies, opening up the

:42:56.:42:59.

relationship between culture, society and state, it is there in

:43:00.:43:05.

her. Gloria, I have brought you to London's oldest brick terrace. This

:43:06.:43:13.

was the home of the minister of the church. He is an Enlightenment

:43:14.:43:18.

thinker. He also host 's lots of Enlightenment thinkers at this

:43:19.:43:23.

house. Mary Wollstonecraft writes in her work, the vindication of the

:43:24.:43:26.

rights of women, just a year after Thomas Paine has written his right

:43:27.:43:32.

of man. And he was talking about the rights of men. This was the

:43:33.:43:36.

Enlightenment, and age when thinkers were turning their back on religion,

:43:37.:43:42.

tradition, folklore and saying, it is actually about science, reason,

:43:43.:43:47.

logic. Mary Wollstonecraft 's point was that if reason is where it is

:43:48.:43:51.

that, how come women are confined to their judicial normals? They should

:43:52.:43:54.

be able to use their talent in the same way as men. But we are not,

:43:55.:44:00.

because we are not educated. She said, I want women to be taught to

:44:01.:44:05.

think. And she packed in what she preached. -- sheep practised what

:44:06.:44:12.

she preached. So it was just around here that she set up a girls'

:44:13.:44:18.

school. There is a plaque over there which commemorates it. It was during

:44:19.:44:21.

her time at the school where she writes her first book. Thoughts on

:44:22.:44:28.

the education of daughters. Yes, which was a guide to female manners.

:44:29.:44:34.

Nonetheless, she earned ?10. She was very pleased about this. In letters

:44:35.:44:38.

which have been published subsequently, she wrote a letter to

:44:39.:44:43.

her sister saying, I hope you have not forgotten, I am an author.

:44:44.:44:47.

Whatever Mary thought of herself, what others have thought of her has

:44:48.:44:51.

changed over time. She was vilified as a feminist full she was then

:44:52.:44:57.

saying did as a figure of the radical romantic movement. She was

:44:58.:45:04.

understood to be the founder of liberal feminism, with her emphasis

:45:05.:45:08.

on right. I now think we are coming to a point where scholars and

:45:09.:45:14.

historians are able to get to grips with the complexity of the work.

:45:15.:45:20.

Gloria, this is the memorial to Mary Wollstonecraft. She is not buried

:45:21.:45:24.

here. She dried -- she died at 38 after giving birth to Mary Shelley,

:45:25.:45:29.

the author of Frankenstein. What seems sad about her is that her

:45:30.:45:33.

reputation gets buried with her. Her reputation was trashed as some kind

:45:34.:45:38.

of moral fanatic, because of decisions she made in her personal

:45:39.:45:41.

life. She had an affair with a married man. She had a child out of

:45:42.:45:45.

wedlock, which was big news in those days. And these things were used by

:45:46.:45:51.

many as a stick to beat her with. And that attitude seems to last for

:45:52.:45:55.

almost a century. It is relatively recently that academics have said,

:45:56.:46:00.

hang on, let's look at what she was saying. The issues in her personal

:46:01.:46:04.

life are still the challenges we talk about as women today. Earning a

:46:05.:46:10.

living, having a career, falling in love, raising children - the same

:46:11.:46:15.

challenges. And that makes her special. She knew she was special.

:46:16.:46:22.

She once said" I was not born to walk on the beaten track". She was

:46:23.:46:24.

not short on self-confidence. Now in a masterpiece of political

:46:25.:46:47.

planning and programming, one of our guests today has actually written

:46:48.:46:52.

about her at university. Is she everything that Gloria makes her out

:46:53.:46:58.

to be? I am not a massive expert but I loved her book. She is one of my

:46:59.:47:06.

favourite writers. Women have education now. We are not being

:47:07.:47:12.

infantilised by men or educated purely for the entertainment of men

:47:13.:47:16.

but there is a sense culturally that women are encouraged to think about

:47:17.:47:20.

appearance and other aspects of behaviour. We buy women's magazines

:47:21.:47:26.

that make women feel guilty about their bodies and sex lives. It makes

:47:27.:47:31.

them feel less about their minds than appearance. There are many

:47:32.:47:36.

issues that are relevant to what she was writing about a long time ago.

:47:37.:47:41.

What she wanted, a lot of that has been achieved that her work is still

:47:42.:47:48.

unfinished. This is a neat balance and lapses into terrible

:47:49.:47:52.

stereotypes. I have not read her. I am going to now! It is very

:47:53.:48:00.

interesting what is going on at the moment. In terms of political

:48:01.:48:03.

representation, there is still a huge way to go. In a way, the only

:48:04.:48:09.

way that people like Gloria got into the House of Commons was through the

:48:10.:48:12.

positive dissemination that Labour has and the other parties do not

:48:13.:48:17.

dare quite do. Culturally, we are discovering, in a way I had not

:48:18.:48:21.

quite clocked how much further we have to go with all of these things

:48:22.:48:25.

going on at the moment. That is quite extraordinary and will bring

:48:26.:48:31.

about profound change. A huge leap, actually. Now time for our regular

:48:32.:48:36.

Friday Referendum Bill slot. It's a feature that we've been running for

:48:37.:48:39.

the last couple of months as the Private Members Bill paving the way

:48:40.:48:42.

for a referendum on our EU membership wends its way through

:48:43.:48:45.

parliament. Today it's back in the Lords where more than 70 amendments

:48:46.:48:49.

had been tabled, including ones in Gaelic, Cornish and Doric. A

:48:50.:48:52.

filibuster designed to make sure the bill runs out of time? Surely peers

:48:53.:48:57.

wouldn't be so cynical? Our political correspondent, Louise

:48:58.:48:59.

Stewart, spoke to Labour peer Lord Foulkes a little earlier. I am

:49:00.:49:14.

joined now by Lord Foulkes. This is pretty cynical politics, isn't it?

:49:15.:49:20.

You are trying to scupper the bill. There are other private members

:49:21.:49:22.

bills which have had much more amendments in the past. The bill

:49:23.:49:28.

from David steel about improving the House of Lords had over 160

:49:29.:49:33.

amendments. This is not unusual. What we are trying to do is examine

:49:34.:49:38.

carefully a bill that has been very badly drafted, is totally

:49:39.:49:43.

inadequate. There are no schedules outlining the arrangements for the

:49:44.:49:49.

referendum. This is a very bad bill which needs careful scrutiny. What

:49:50.:49:53.

has happened is we have been given an artificial timetable, an

:49:54.:49:57.

artificial deadline, to complete the bill. If we do not get it through

:49:58.:50:02.

without amendment by that time, we are scuppering the bell. That is not

:50:03.:50:06.

the way that legislation should be dealt with in the United Kingdom.

:50:07.:50:13.

Unelected peers, if you do go ahead and manage to do this bill, you are

:50:14.:50:19.

preventing the public having it safe. You are talking about

:50:20.:50:28.

unelected peers. We deal with this all the time. This is the structure

:50:29.:50:33.

we have. We are not against the principle of a referendum. This bill

:50:34.:50:37.

is totally inadequate. The question is wrong. The timing is wrong.

:50:38.:50:42.

Arrangements are wrong and it needs to be improved. After all, we cannot

:50:43.:50:48.

bind the next Parliament. If David Cameron wins the election, and I do

:50:49.:50:52.

not think he will, if he does, he can decide to have a referendum

:50:53.:50:57.

whenever he wants. It looks as if you do not trust the public. Most of

:50:58.:51:03.

them are drawing pensions now. It is 60 years ago since he had his

:51:04.:51:09.

chance. I did campaign on that occasion. There is actually an act

:51:10.:51:16.

on the stamp duty -- on the statute which is, if there is a major change

:51:17.:51:21.

in the competencies of the EU and any transfer of power, there has to

:51:22.:51:26.

be a referendum. There are provisions for a referendum. Thank

:51:27.:51:30.

you very much for joining me. And peers are still debating those

:51:31.:51:34.

amendments. Here's the scene in the Lords now - busier than normal for a

:51:35.:51:36.

Friday. The Conservative peer Baroness

:51:37.:51:43.

Browning has been taking part in that debate but has left the chamber

:51:44.:51:52.

and joins us now. Welcome. Is this going to get through? Looking at the

:51:53.:51:57.

number of people in the House of Lords, I voted not content to this

:51:58.:52:02.

amendment before I came here. I am not sure how it will go. I think

:52:03.:52:05.

this bill could be killed on the numbers of Liberal Democrats and

:52:06.:52:10.

Labour turning out to spike it. What would then happen? What with the

:52:11.:52:16.

Government do? Unless the Government bring something forward in the next

:52:17.:52:19.

session, the last session of this Parliament, clearly they can put a

:52:20.:52:25.

manifesto pledge forward. One of the strengths of this bill is that the

:52:26.:52:31.

body politic has let people down of all parties. People want a

:52:32.:52:37.

referendum, we know that. People have promised a referendum for many

:52:38.:52:40.

years. Every time there is a reason why not to. If this bill was passed

:52:41.:52:46.

and it had all-party support, as it did in the House of Commons, at

:52:47.:52:50.

least the public would know that whatever the outcome of the next

:52:51.:52:54.

general election they will get their say. In a sense, has it not been a

:52:55.:52:59.

public relations exercise for Mr Cameron? He wanted to do something

:53:00.:53:06.

to show I really, really mean we are going to have a referendum, so he

:53:07.:53:11.

wanted to get this through this side of the election. You will know this

:53:12.:53:15.

Parliament cannot find the next Parliament. It could easily have

:53:16.:53:18.

been repealed by the next Parliament. It could. I would not

:53:19.:53:25.

say I do not envisage that if it did get through, when it came to putting

:53:26.:53:30.

it into practice, there would not be some slight revision of it. The date

:53:31.:53:35.

needs to be set. There is quite a lot of tweaking needed. It is the

:53:36.:53:38.

underlying principle to the people of this country that what they have

:53:39.:53:42.

clearly stated they want, and that is a say on the EU matter. When it

:53:43.:53:47.

went through the House of Commons, there was no opposition to it at

:53:48.:53:53.

third reading. There was no opposition to it from the Liberal

:53:54.:53:55.

Democrats and Labour at second reading. You would believe both

:53:56.:53:58.

those key parties were in favour of it. Now it is in the House of Lords,

:53:59.:54:07.

over 80 amendments are down. I think we would be better still tomorrow

:54:08.:54:11.

morning should we do it today. There is now an attempt to frustrate and

:54:12.:54:17.

kill it. The difficulty is, Labour and Lib Dems do not want their

:54:18.:54:24.

fingerprints on it. They get good old timers, who is a past master at

:54:25.:54:28.

the filibuster with a very straight face, and others who do not really

:54:29.:54:34.

want a referendum, to try to kill this off in the House of Lords. Are

:54:35.:54:42.

you going back to vote again? I am going back to bed many times, I

:54:43.:54:45.

suspect, today. Now, feel you've missed out on the big political

:54:46.:54:49.

stories of the week, don't worry. In the true spirit of public service,

:54:50.:54:51.

we've condensed the important stories and some of the trivial ones

:54:52.:54:55.

down to just a minute. Here's the David Thompson with the week in 60

:54:56.:55:03.

seconds. Double trouble for the Lib Dems. Thus the party teetered on the

:55:04.:55:09.

brink of civil war over the Lord when aunt affair and then Mike

:55:10.:55:14.

Hancock was suspended over claims he made unwanted sexual advances

:55:15.:55:19.

towards a female constituent. David Sonesta claimed recent floods where

:55:20.:55:26.

divine retribution and legalising -- over legalising gay marriage. They

:55:27.:55:32.

mocked up these pictures of the UKIP leader doing some cleaning in his

:55:33.:55:37.

pants. Good luck getting that image out of your head? David Miliband

:55:38.:55:49.

reinforced claims. Fellow conservatives were called upon to

:55:50.:55:54.

hate less. Eric Pickles declared war on biscuit munching ministers. He

:55:55.:55:59.

has been banned from tucking into taxpayer funded snacks in an attempt

:56:00.:56:01.

to cut costs. A quick word from you on this

:56:02.:56:14.

immigration Bill. It is another embarrassment for Mr Cameron. There

:56:15.:56:18.

are more amendments on the way. They had crisis talks this week in

:56:19.:56:23.

Downing Street with Nigel Mills, the backbencher who tabled this

:56:24.:56:27.

amendment. He refused to back down. They have tabled other amendments to

:56:28.:56:32.

help siphon off support. I am going to come to you on immigration. Nick

:56:33.:56:38.

Clegg has been talking about the trouble surrounding the Lib Dem MP

:56:39.:56:41.

for Portsmouth, Mike Hancock. Let's see what he had to say. I was

:56:42.:56:50.

appalled at those revelations. When I was given the specific allegations

:56:51.:56:53.

at the beginning of last year, for the first time, I immediately asked

:56:54.:56:57.

the Chief Whip to investigate. As a result, he ceased to be a Liberal

:56:58.:57:02.

Democrat MP. When the allegations were supported by the QC 's report

:57:03.:57:06.

which have come to light this week, we acted immediately and he has been

:57:07.:57:10.

suspended from the Liberal Democrats altogether. We have had a little bit

:57:11.:57:19.

of fun about the Lord when I business but there is no fun to have

:57:20.:57:33.

about the Mike Hancock business. Psion I have a degree of sympathy

:57:34.:57:38.

for him. He has very limited levers to pull. He has done what he can. He

:57:39.:57:47.

originally got suspended from the Whip but now he has been suspended

:57:48.:57:56.

from the party. He has done what he can. The image is, the Lib Dems have

:57:57.:58:03.

always had an image of being eccentric and so on. When you have

:58:04.:58:07.

all the stuff you willing around and Nick Clegg popping up and saying, I

:58:08.:58:11.

have tried to do what I can. It looks really bad, as they are

:58:12.:58:16.

acutely aware. It does not look as if it will get better quickly. There

:58:17.:58:23.

is this row we have discussing -- been discussing which is rumbling

:58:24.:58:27.

on. That's all for today. Thanks to all our guests. The one o'clock news

:58:28.:58:35.

is starting over on BBC One now. I'll be back on Sunday with the

:58:36.:58:38.

Sunday Politics on BBC One where I'll be speaking to the Transport

:58:39.:58:40.

Secretary Patrick McLoughlin. Do join me then. Bye-bye. Have a

:58:41.:58:51.

nice weekend. Our number-one priority

:58:52.:59:10.

is moving the child or baby.

:59:11.:59:11.

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