29/09/2011 Newsnight


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Gavin Esler.

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Tonight, Germany's politicians back the latest bailout plan for the


euro. But how worried are the German people that they are signing


a blank cheque. First we have had a snowball, the snowball becomes


bigger and bigger and bigger, and sometimes it will be an avalanche.


You think this is making things worse? Yes, I'm afraid.


One of Mrs Merkel's ministers tells Newsnight why her country owes it


to the rest of us. 60 years ago it was us who brought war and


destruction over Europe, the European people did not chase us


away, kick us out. Rio Fredinand loses his privacy


case, but is it really a big win for the tabloids. Stephen Mosley


and Rio Fredinand's biographer debate how important the judgment


is. - max Mosley. In Saudi Arabia a woman driver is


spared the lash, is it real reform or a half hearted promise of


something some time. Happy St George's Day, now kiss


my...Jerusalem, The play that entranceed the critics and


delighted audiences is coming back to the London stage. Its star, Mark


Rylance, is here to discuss its appeal, and what it tells us about


being English today. Germany's political class, with


some notable exceptions, rallied behind Chancellor Merkel today in


voting more money for the continued eurozone bailouts. Like generals


still fighting an ancient war, they may have solved last year's


problems, how close are they with getting to grips with today's


problems and tomorrow. Some forecast this latest move,


depending on the generosity of the German tax-payers, will be far from


the last. There is clear public anger about that prospect, why are


the Germans still enthralled to the European project.


The Volkswagen headquarters in Wolfsburg owes everything to that


latter day miracle, the German economy. Every day the towers are


stacked with new cars, by night fall most of them are empty. People


come from everywhere to gawp at the achievements of global industry.


This is the most graphic illustration of Germany as Europe's


economic powerhouse. For decades that is how Germans have seen


themselves. But for the grandchildren of a post-war


generation, will success be sustained? Germany may lead Europe,


but the euro-bailout leaves many Germans simply baffled. I'm not


sure if the system is right or not. When we do a decision, we go on


this way, or we go in this way, who knows what is right. You mean this


is all too confusing? Sometimes, yes. Do you think that Germany is


paying too much at the moment for Europe? Yes, I think so. We are the


country who pays the most for the Greeks. Is it possible to get the


money back? And in way what way? That is I think is the problem.


Just a few hours here in Wolfsburg reinforces the familiar message,


Germany's economic prowess has been keeping the European show on the


road. But many Germans are wondering about the numbers adding


up. Many Germans believe that the poorer nations, Greece and the rest,


have been taking them for a ride. Back in Berlin, where the bailout


was under debate, business leaders are irate as what they see as basic


rules being broken over Greece. the beginning you earn a lot of


money with high interest rates. Now you get the feeling that you can't


get back your money. And you cry for European Governments that they


should take liability. They should bail you out? Yes, indeed. We say,


that's liability. For the risks, that is one of the principles of


market economy.At The Bundestag, Chancellor Merkel was surviving the


challenge to her authority. The bailout was approved, with her


budget chairman, telling me this could be just the start. More


billions could yet be deployed to help the rescue.


It is necessary to do more. much more can be given? It would be


wrong to say any number, any figure, any ...It Is a blank cheque? It is


not the rise signal, in the markets. Some in Merkel's coalition believe


this is all too reckless? But first, we have had a snowball, the


snowball becomes bigger and bigger and bigger, sometimes it will be an


avalanche. You think this is making things worse? Yes, I'm afraid.


While many Germans share this angst and apprehension, even now few will


question the euro itself. Germans, even those appalled by the bailouts,


are committed to the currency. you look to different European


countries, then you see that in other countries we have strong


political parties, which are totally against Europe. Luckily we


don't have that in Germany yet, but the danger is growing that such a


party could come around. You are saying, luckily you don't have it,


why is it luckily you don't have it? We believe Europe is a very


good project. Our future lies in Europe, in a combined Europe.


are no Euro-sceptics in Germany, everybody believes in the project?


Yes. The overwhelming majority does. But the risks for this project are


growing immensely. So, on a night when a new


exhibition of ancient Greek art opens here in Berlin, how to


explain the German commitment to keeping modern Europe afloat.


think there are many things to say on this. The most prominent thing


is, let's call it the historical glue, is falling apart. Germany is


unified for 20 years now, this country has profoundly changed, it


is coming nicely along, it is a different Republic than the former


federal Republic, this structure that we need to be European, the


first prize, at any condition, this is fading. What we are discussing


now, is yes, Europe, profoundly the German people are profoundly


European, we want a price tag, we want to know which Europe, which


conditions, at which price. Wolfsburg, the town built on VW and


exports, you didn't have to look hard to find true believers and


defenders of the faith. The euro was good for Germany, I think, even


today, if you didn't have the euro and we had the German currency, the


exchanges rate would be high up, and we are not Switzerland and do


what they do and say we take it to the euro. The point s Germans


remain as tied to the euro as ever, but they are also about to be faced


with an economic slowdown, growth next year of just 1.5%. Don't be


deceived, there are rougher waters ahead.


After the vote was won, I talked with the German minister of labour


and social affairs, she's also chairman of the political party of


Angela Merkel, the CDU. Doesn't the overwhelming majority in the


Bundestag, behind Chancellor Merkel's plan, suggest you have


been too calm and cautious, you could have had the vote and pushed


harder and faster? No, we have to go step by step. Because we realise


now that we haven't been talking enough about where we want to go


with Europe, and what the consequences out of the crisis are.


During the last eight years we have been talking a lot about


regulations of lightbulbs and cucumbers, but not about the values


we defend in Europe. That is the time now to make sure we want to go


forward with Europe, we did make mistakes, we have to learn our


lessons and get further towards integration in Europe. But I wonder


if there aren't two Germans and two Berlins speaking today. There is


the people inside the Bundestag, who have clearly an idea of Europe,


but there is the people outside, the ordinary voters of Germany, who


are sceptical and some of them angry that you will be back again,


and again, and again for more money? I understand that people are


worried. We have a deep crisis, we are not at the end of the crisis.


But what was necessary is the process to realise that the problem


began ten years ago, when we started with our single currency,


the euro, which was the right decision, but we didn't fulfil it.


We just said we want a common currency, but we don't want common


discipline. Where budgets are concerned. We gave ourselves rules


but we broke the rules. We broke the limits for debts and now we are


in the process to say we have to have more discipline in Europe, we


need a central European player who controls those rules that are not


to be broken. That is the way we are now. How do you respond to the


argument that maybe today you solved last year's problem, and now


it is even worse, and for the German voters they see figures,


maybe a trillion euros will be needed or two trillion euros, they


will think maybe they are signing a blank cheque to people who have not


had that discipline? We have realised now that the way to get


into debt was slowly but surely not sticking to the Maastricht rules.


For the European people, for the German people, it was a process to


realise we have to give up some sovereignity, if we want to fulfil


Europe, that is to make sure we have fiscal discipline, so the euro


is stable but also the values of Europe stable. In Germany we do


have a long history with Europe. 60 years ago it was us who brought war


and destruction over Europe the European people did not chase us


away or kick us out. They gave us a hand to stand up again to become


competitive. Today we in Germany are strong, that is what we have to


remember. We are strong now, we can give solidarity, but we need to


implement subsidiarity too, that is the goal right now. This mixture of


solidarity, with clear rules, and subsidiarity, is the right way to


I'm joined from Berlin by Professor Markus Kerber, one of a group of


German activists who has used court challenges to try to stop the


bailouts. You have heard one view there that today's vote was a


triumph for European solidarity, you also heard the view that it was


good Germany money thrown after bad? As you know from my different


statements, I consider the bailout policy as totally inadequate to


solve the fundamental problems of the eurozone. You can't come over


the discrepancy of some countries being competitive, others being


uncompetitive by sovereign debt crisis. Nothing will be improved in


Greece, Ireland and Portugal, simply by subsidising these


countries. As a matter of fact, Greece has been subsidised heavily


for more than 0 years through the European, regional and structural


fund. You know the result. So we simply are horrified by the vision


that at the moment, where this bailout is, or the beefed up


European financial FA - European Financial Stability Facility is


voted, some of these professional euro rescuers in Brussels or


elsewhere, mention the possibility, or the probability of enlarging the


fund. That means they don't have any intellectual devices to fight


that crisis. They say, very clearly, there is no alternative. We have


just heard from the minister there, that Germany has a duty to do this,


you have to do it? Well, this is almost outrageous do compare the


war crimes of Germany with the poor fiscal governance of Greece. This


is a blessing to the millions of victims, which are a chip on our


shoulder. I find the comments of the minister most despicable. This


has got nothing to do with it. If we acted to, if we want to step


forward, it is - if we want to acted to, we want to step forward


in a proper way. She is a medical doctor and has not the foggiest


idea of the euro problems. We need to deal in a legitimate policy that


claims to be without alternative. Violation of the law is


never...Sorry To interrupt, you were thrown out by the


constitutional court? No, we lost a legal battle concerns, the first


European Financial Stability Facility. Now we have a beefed up


European Financial Stability Facility. And this can be very


easily the object of another legal challenge. I remind you of the fact


that my group has another challenge in the European Court of Justice,


because we sued Mr Trichet for his totally illegal quantitative easing


policy, turning the European Central Bank into a bad bank.


Distorting competition on the capital markets, and putting so


much risk into the euro system that sooner or later we will have a


total collapse. The legal battle begins, the political battle


continues, and there is no German guilt that could motivate the


illogical and economic policy laid out by Chancellor Merkel. You raise


the political issue, when do you think the patience of the German


voters will run out with this? The politicians, the mainstream


politicians are saying, most Germans want this, they want the


euro to survive. This is the only way we can do it? This is totally


contrary to the polls, 85% of the Germans disapprove the bailout


policy. There are still a number of Germans who say we have helped


Greece once, now we have started the first umbrella euro rescue in


May, June, 2010, now we are going to beef it up, creating raw tools


and allowing the fund and the primary markets to be totally


uncompetitive with the pro-hib Biggs of monetary financing data.


Some politicians say we need more money, sooner or later popular


common sense will bring a limit to the unintelligent eurorescuers who


have nothing else to offer, but more debt. More debt will not solve


the fundamental problem of the eurozone, which is economic


divergance, we are a split between the north and south. That can only


be overcome by a monetary split of the eurozone, which reshapes it and


gives Greece, Portugal, Ireland and perhaps other countries, the


monetary freedom back, the monetary sovereignity back to enable them to


make devaluation and to catch up. The footballer, Rio Fredinand, lost


a high-profile privacy case in the High Court today. The winsers were


Mirror Group newspapers, it had exploits of his sex life. It is


seen as a victory for free speech over celebrity. Why did the judge


appear to take the decision? This in way, the judge said this was a


classic kiss and tell in some respects. A woman who claimed to


have a 13-year relationship with Rio Fredinand, the former England


capital, sold her story to the Sunday mirror for �16,000. Rio


Fredinand himself this was a gross invasion of his privacy, and took


action. The judge had to decide between two balancing things. His


right to privacy on the one hand, under Article 8 of the Human Rights


Act, and the newspapers' freedom of expression, under Article 10. Why


did the judge come down on the side of the newspaper, he said there


were very specific circumstances about the background to this story.


You may remember that Rio Fredinand's predecessor, as England


manager, John Terry, he was actually sacked by Fabio Capello


for alleged misdemeanors in his private life. I spoke to the media


lawyer today about this background. There is a public interest element.


Once that is engaged, and not just by Fabio Capello, but also the


chief executive of the FA, and also the minister of sport. There was a


wider public debate about whether or not Terry should have been


sacked for that. Once Rio Fredinand takes the role, he is implicitly


saying I'm man of unimpeachable behaviour, therefore I'm fit to


wear the England armband. If that proves to be untrue, as it has been


shown, then what the newspaper is entitled to do is contribute to


that debate. I suppose the big question, which you implied in your


answer, is there is specific answers here, whether this is one


judgment, one case, or whether we draw some wider lesson from it?


There has been an assumption after the phone hacking scandal that we


would see some general clampdown on tabloid journalistic standards,


more privacy cases, for example. I don't think that is clear. The


hacking scandal really centre on criminality, hacking phones is


simply against the law. Those cases are quite clear cut. Privacy cases


are some what different. The Rio Fredinand case centres very much on


the specifics of the case in terms of the public interest. You may


remember in 2008, Max Mosley, we will hear from him, one case in the


British courts saying his privacy had been invaded, the judge


supported him in that. I think now it is too early to say this is a


watershed moment. Afterall, the public interest is key, if every


single tabloid newspaper had to justify every single-sex scandal on


the basis of the public interest, they may be struggling. I'm joined


by Max Mosley, who has become a strong campaigner on privacy issues,


and the biographer of the book on Ferdinand. How do you see this, in


the Mirror people will be very happy with this judgment? It is a


brief respite for the tabloids, that is all it is. Times are


changing, even in the last couple of years since Max's case. The


whole ethos has been rocked by the hacking cases and the types of


cases brought by Max and others. The Mirror has won this one, but


the only winners are the lawyers. I can't see this being any emphatic


victory for newspapers. I don't think it will make a big difference.


The biggest differences will happen in the circulations that are


plummeting, and the newspapers themselves, whether they survive


will be down to those factors. do you see t there is one way of


reading it, it is a bit of a setback for privacy and that


campaign and a victory for the tabloids? Only in a limited sense.


In the end, it depended on its particular facts and the judge's


assessment of the facts. That for example Rio Fredinand had held


himself up to be somebody of impecable moral standing, a good


family man and so on, so the judge attributed importance to that.


Personally I wouldn't, I would say as long as he plays football as


well as he should the rest is nobody else's business, that is my


view. The problem is nobody nowadays can actually sue for


privacy, once the story is out, you can never get it made private again.


Worse than that, if you sue, it actually costs you money even if


you won. If Rio Fredinand had won the case he would have been out of


pocket. I was out of pocket with mean despite earning record damages.


Some people can afford to do it, some people can't? Exactly, that is


what is so wrong. It is completely wrong, even if you have the money,


that you should end up out of pocket if you win a case. What is


outrageous is 90% of the population couldn't bring a case at all. They


have stopped the conditional fee arrangements, which was the one way


a person with limited means could bring a case. There is nothing to


replace it. So people have no right to justice. This one victory for


the Mirror isn't going to change people's perceptions of the


tabloids now. Which is sinking fast. I have just written a book called


Tabloid Tricks, which is all about the sort of things that I used to


get up to as a tabloid journalist, many years before phone hacking.


These days it is all out in the open. The case with Ferdinand is


different, in a sense, this woman, who decided to tell all, went to a


newspaper, voluntarily decided to do it, after the end of her


relationship. To be fair, she had the right, if she wished to do it.


Even though it breaches somebody else's right, that is the balance?


I think we are talking about his fame and whether he should be


captain and whether that affected t I think it is about the woman's


right. I'm not clear how, not this case, necessarily, but hacking and


all these things, have affected the culture within the tabloids?


Without doubt, they are terrified. Of what? Prison, probably!


irony, at the moment, is phone hacking meant they could get


stories without ever having to leave the office, now they are not


leaving the office because they are afraid of doing anything to get


into trouble. The other argument is to say that you target a particular


celebrity, because you find interesting things about him or her


sex life. You publicise t and you say that person was a role model,


or should have been a role model. You could say that about almost


anyone? In the judgment, the judge makes it clear that just because


you are famous doesn't mean your sex life can be debated or


discussed in public. Of course, the role model argument, actually a lot


of confused thinking there. If somebody is a role model, people


copy them. You wouldn't want to do something bad. But if you tell the


world they are doing something bad, the world tend to copy T it is


exactly the opposite of the effect you want. There is a weird logic to


that, I agree. In Max's case, he wasn't a famous personality, to be


fair to you. Therefore, I see these cases is so different. I think we


have seen a whole shrew of cases going against the - slew of cases


going against the tabloids, trust me on this, the rest of them won't


go against it. The type of journalist, it will continue. Hugh


Grant has talked a lot about it, he is to some people a role model, to


others a great actor? This is a thin defence, that is my way of


looking at it. This is another brick in the wall for the tabloids,


isn't it? Even if they are celebrating? Yes, it is another


brick in the wall, I have already said it is a brief respite, they


are going to - I don't know if they will be here in the next ten years.


I don't relish that, times are changing, everything around us is


changing and communications are changing. People are beginning to


realise the role model argument is completely speechless, then there


is the hypocrisy argument, that is also speechless, you should analyse


it. The tabloids are in the wrong in this debate, they are the only


ones with a voice, the rest of us can hardly ever answer. The fact of


the matter, what they are doing is confusing the issue, a fundamental


thing is that if you sue for breach of privacy, once it is out in the


open, you will never, ever get a proper remedy. The remedy is to


stop the thing being published in the first place. With Rio Fredinand,


was he wise to push this? I don't think he was very wise to push it.


I'm sure a lot of lawyers pushed him into it. I have to say now, he


has created more publicity about the case by unfortunately deciding


to take legal action. That isn't a defence from doing it. But I just


feel he has lost on all counts. Thank you very much.


Even the restrictive and highly conservative society of Saudi


Arabia is not immune from the ripples of the Arab Spring. King


Abdullah's decision to prevent a woman driver from being lashed. It


follows the budget that women will be allowed to vote. Millions of


Saudi men who have the right to vote don't bother, because there is


no elective parliament. So is Saudi Arabia truly on the cusp of real


With turmoil all around it in the Middle East, which way is Saudi


Arabia heading? The turns in its policy towards women betray a


divided society, and uncertain leadership. When a few brave women


seized the steering wheel this year, in the only country in the world


where female driving was banned, they were mostly cautioned and


ignored by police. This week one was sentenced to ten lashes. A


decision now revoked by King Abdullah. To the delight of the


fellow campaigner who took to the road this summer. We were so happy


to hear it, as the king interfered in such a thing, that is a clear


message to everybody, don't punish women for doing that. And that


means that driving is legal, actually it is not illegal to drive


a car. The king's decision came just days


after his announcement that Saudi women will have the vote in


municiple elections, the only ones the kingdom allows, from 2015. It


is part, he implied, of a wider commitment to social reform.


TRANSLATION: We refuse to marginalise the role of women, in


every aspect of Saudi society. there is a long way to go. As


Newsnight reported from saud dough Arabia, earlier this year, - Saudi


Arabia, earlier this year, radio and TV newsrooms are one of the


only places women are allowed to work alongside men. They need


permission of a male guardian for almost all public activity. There


is no sign of judicial reform. King Abdullah, if he was serious


about reform, he would have said, "I am going to do a serious reform


of the judiciary". The judicial, with the 700 judges. And mostly,


dominated by the Wahhabi religious establishment, is the biggest


obstacle to women's rights, full rights of citizenship in Saudi


Arabia. But it's not just clerics, this


Saudi woman has become famous for her part in a campaign called My


Guardian Knows Best. TRANSLATION: It is just the liberals who don't


agree, I don't know what they want. Do they just expect a woman to live


without a man? Any so-called liberal I have spoken to has left


his wife at home, and it is only other women he wants to liberate.


King Abdullah has made a few small steps to advance women's rights, a


co-educational university, a female deputy minister, but he's 87 and in


poor health. Unlikely to win a battle for change against


conservative clerics and hardliners in his own family. Nine years ago,


Crown Prince Abdullah, at the time, now king, has said that women, with


many conditions, could be driving cars. Women were very elated about


this announcement. Two days later his half brother, minister of


interior, Prince Niaf, still a minister of interior, said the


announcement in the newspapers Saudi women will never, never be


allowed to drive cars. Prince Niaf, who some believe may


eventually become king, says he sees no need for elections either,


let alone women MPs. Meanwhile, even a decree this year to allow


women to work in lingerie shops, preventing customers from buying


their bras from male assistants was denied. In this most conservative


of kingdoms, butressed by its oil wealth, whatever the direction of


travel, movement is certain to be slow.


Abeer Mishkhas is a Saudi who works for the newspaper Asharq Lal-Awsat,


and we have a Sudanese commentator and writer on Muslim women issues


who has also lived in Saudi Arabia. How significant do you think the


question of maybe women getting the vote, and the way the king stepped


in about the woman to be lashed, how important is that? It is very


important. The vote, especially, is really an important issue. It means


that women finally are getting into the political process and being


part of T after years and years of being marginalised, now they are


being taken seriously and will be given a role. Now, how significant


that role will be depends on the women themselves, they really have


to fight to keep what they get right now. How do you see it?


is definitely something afoot in Saudi Arabia, three things in


succession have happened, the women to drive campaign, the right of


women to vote in four years time, and this recent decision to commute


the lashing of a woman who had dared to drive, in the past few


weeks. However, these are all things that have been hypothetical,


nothing has actually happened in real life. Nothing tangible has


taken place. Do you think the reaction is to the Arab Spring,


that the king and others around him feel they have to do something?


Undoubtedly there is a feeling in Saudi Arabia that something needs


to happen and needs to be done. I think the Royal Family is slightly


panicking about how to pre-empt any kind of serious opposition to it.


But, so far we're hearing a lot of words, but no action. Is that a


fair point, and also on the voting question, Saudi men could vote


today, but many don't bother to register because you can't vote for


a parliament, you can vote for local councils, but half of those


members are appointed any way. There doesn't seem much point, it


seems a process without any result? You are right, I think a lot of men


they are not showing up in the polls today. But the thing is I


think women will take it as a challenge, because they have been


deprived of that right before. And now they want to prove a point, and


I think it is going to be significant. I think they are going


to make a difference. Is the driving question, is that a big


practical issue, or is it just a symbol of something? It is both,


actually. It is a very, it is an issue that touches every woman in


sud Saudi Arabia. It is really hard to - Saudi Arabia, it is really


hard to be able to move around. For a lot of women who have been


commenting on the king's latest decrees, they are saying driving


can wait a little bit. These issues, we have lots of issues that have to


come first, we have priorities, and driving can wait a little bit.


would be a real concrete change. You said all these things and nice


words, and things are moving. What would be an important change?


real concrete change would be to issue licenses to Saudi women, and


allow them to drive. That would be something that would be very


tangible and erode some scepticism, but there hasn't been any kind of


example, physically, where anything has been done. And one thing I


would like to mention about the elections, it is in four years time,


before women can vote, anything can happen in four years. The current


king is very frail, he's old, his successor is older than him, and


also quite frail, and the second in line to the throne, Prince Niaf, as


mentioned, is very conservative, and has mentioned in the past he's


against women voting and against elections, full stop. Four years a


long time when you have two octogenarian leaders and one


waiting in the wings with a much more conservative bent. What do you


make of in the report we heard what would change things profoundly


would be reform of the judiciary, the guardianship law, and that sort


of thing, is that on the cards? it is talked about a lot, talked


about in newspapers, there is a lot of talk about it. Especially the


lashing case today, people started talking about how the judiciary


should be reformed again. But the thing is, things are happening


really slowly. I think people would want to see changes much quicker


than that. Isn't there, though an implicit bargain in the society


between the Royal Family and the religious leaders, and that is very


difficult to bring about the reforms without irritating many of


the religious leaders, so it is not going to happen? It is not only the


religious leaders. You have to consider that Saudi Arabia is a


very conservative company. A lot of people - country, a lot of people


take things differently. A lot of people, driving is, in the


westernised life, people shouldn't be thinking about it, they want


segregation all the time. It is also people in the society that


have to be, there is always two sides fighting really in that


society. You suggested in a degree of pessimism about this. How do you


think this will play out over the next five years? It is not


pessimism it is scepticism, anything can happen in the next


five years. If there is a legitimate and earnest desire for


change in the Royal Family that will filter down. If it is tokenism,


and the king trying to create a good legacy for himself, it has


shallow roots and we will find ourselves in the same position four


years from now. I heard a Saudi rain interviewed on the radio today,


he said if you give women the right to drive it will be mini-skirts


next and the end of the society? Some people will think that, I know


that. The problem is society has to accept it. And I can tell, I don't


know, a lot of people following Saudi know that women now go out on


the street more than they did before. Now they go out driving,


every day there is a case of this woman going out driving. So I think


slowly the society will accept the fact that women will be out there


behind the wheel and just doing their own things.


Thank you very much. Now, one of the biggest hits on the


London stage for years, Jerusalem, is about to make a return after an


award-winning stint on Broadway. The play was critically acclaimed


and much loved by audiences, as was Mark Rylance, in the central role


of Johnny Byron. I will talk to him about what the play means about


Englishness, and about his reputation as arguably the graith


greatest English actor of his generation.


Mark Rylance has been called everything from a genius to an


eccentric, perhaps in the theatre the one implies a bit of the other.


His career as an actor, theatre director, and writer, led to a


string of awards and extraordinary accolades, Al Pacino said he made


Shakespeare sound as if the Bard had written the words for him the


night before. Rylance was the first artistic director of the revived


Globe Theatre, which some predicted would be some kind of theme park


disSAS te, but Rylance proved them wrong, and turned it into a beloved


- disaster, but Rylance proved them wrong and turned it into a boufd


institution. The play is very English - beloved institution. The


play is very English. Written by Jez Butterworth, Rylance


was immediately drawn to the role of the wanted wildman of the woods,


Jonny Rooster Byron. You called him a force of nature like a dragon or


forest fireworks Rooster is a liar, drug dealer, waster, holding court


in a rundown caravan in wilt shirk railing against the authorities who


want to move him on. Happy St George's Day, now kiss my begger


arse, you puritans. Part of the appeal is that Jerusalem is a comic


tale from the edges of society. Pot-smoking hoodies, soulless


housing estates, tedious bureaucrats. Murder She Wrote...It


Is the deeper themes of the meaning of Englishness, now in the 21st


century, pasturised modern Britain, that have engaged the critics and


the audiences. Mark is with me now. I will ask you the most difficult


question first, why does that play strike such a chord, it is


difficult to figure out sometimes, you must have thought about it?


suppose I have. I have never been in a play where I have left the


theatre at night and found people sleeping on the concrete outside


the theatre to get in. It seems the people are hungry for something,


and the play feeds that hunger. Jez describes it as a battle of logos


and mythos, he says logos is the thing of needing to eat, you need


to distract the animal, you hit it on the head and hopefully we can


eat, it doesn't work for a long time and you get logos, when you do


eventually get to eat, you get mythos, that is the why are we here,


what does that mean, where do did we come from and where did we go.


The culture at the moment is compressing us to be so logical all


the time, all the economic problems. Everyone has debts, you don't want


to think about it all the time. It seems like the pressure on people


is to be logical and functional all the time, there is a great hunger


for something more mysterious. friend of mine said to me before we


came on, you know, the character you play is the sort of dodgy bloke


that every one of us knows a bit of. You see in the dodgy pub you drank


in as a teenager but you don't want to go in any more. There is


something about that, that strike as chord? That is why I took the


part, I was very impressed by people like that on the edge of


town when I was growing up. grew up in the suburbs? In America


I grew up, I also spend my summers in Kent. I was always very struck


when I would come back from the Midwest of America, surrounded by


Coca-Cola executives, to this little village, sitting hurst in


Kent. There was a man, Mr Dycehurst, who lived in a flat, he like today


dress as a woman, he came down with his dress and wig on, people never


picked on him, they used to say hello. It was amazing, maybe


because it is an island, there seemed to be more of an acceptance


of eccentricity. You have been called an eccentric? Have I?


have! It is almost mandatory in a way, for anyone who tries to be


creative. Do you think one of the problems in this country, touched


on in the play, is we are squeezing out the allowing of people to be


eccentric, this marginal life where people are allowed to be slightly


weird? I don't think you can make so much money off of people if


everybody is independent. If everyone wants Coca-Cola from a


different-sized bottle the Coca- Cola doesn't make so much money, as


if everyone accepts it all comes in the same bottle. But you know, you


look around and no-one is the same. So there is basic problem in my


mind, in the organisations that have formed to make money out of


selling things. And who we really are, which is independent. Isn't


one of the strong things about English people, is they are


resistant to change, they don't like being told by the bureaucrats


how to do things, they hate it, it strikes a chord about Englishness?


I suppose so, when you go to America, there is an excitement


about new things in America. There is a little bit more of a cautious


here in England. But I feel if you do, in America everyone is your


best friend right away, you don't feel you get very deeply into their


friendship. Here people hold you off but when they let you in it is


more deeply. Why did it work in America, Enron, a great play,


Americans didn't like it. With this, they did, this is very English?


think it is basically about people who want to stay and have to go,


and people who want to go and have to stay. You know, you don't have


to believe in the Myan prophesis to realise the way we are living is


not really sustainable. Everyone has a consciousness underneath that


there are big changes coming. It is hard to change it in ourselves, it


is hard for the governors to change T but one is aware it can't really


go on like this. We all have a bit of rooster and are living in a wood


in way and it doesn't feel like it is going to last very long. I think


the play talks so that conscious or unconscious feeling that big change


is coming. Just a simple point about you, actually. Is it not


exhausting? It is a very fiscal play and you have no understudy, so


it is either you or a big hole on the stage I presume! That must be


really quite tiring, and quite daunting? People always say that to


me. But he's a very defiant character, and maybe that's a nice


thing about English people, that they are not to be bossed about


easily. Maybe they have been bossed about too much for the few


thousands of years. He's so defiant, if I do think for a moment in the


performance that I'm feeling tired, Rooster says he has things to say


and do. I come out really with a lot of energy. You come out with


energy? Yeah, yeah, yeah. I want to do it again. There is such a lot of


laughter from the audience, I realise I just don't care so much


for film and television because the live thing is so vital. You get it


there and then, I'm not talking about Newsnight, I like that?


Making them, you know. You have been called, you have been called


the greatest actor of your generation, and Jez Butterworth,


who wrote the play, says he couldn't imagine it without you,


you might as well burn the script. Those are burdens? What does it


mean, I'm the greatest liar. I try, I try not to pay attention to that.


It could be a burden. But greatest just means different, really, I


don't know. Are you glad to be back on the London stage? It is lovely.


We can say some of the naughty words we can't say in puritan


America. I did hear about that, on that happy note we will leave it


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 42 seconds


there. That's all from Newsnight tonight.


Emily is here tomorrow. From all of Is the heat going to hold on into


the weekend I hear you ask. For many of us the answer is yes,


though not for all. The weather front in the North West will bring


changes to some parts of the UK, it will start to rain across Northern


Ireland and western Scotland during the course of the day. But further


south and east it is, as you were, more of the same, another hot and


sunny day across the heart of England. With temperatures shth


shooting up into the mid-to high 20s.


Down across the south west of England, a little bit more cloud,


fringing into parts of Cornwall, western parts of Wales too. That


weather front approaches. Most of the West Country, most of Wales


will have a fine and warm day. A different story across the Irish


Sea, because it will turn wet for a time across Northern Ireland. Heavy


bursts of rain pushing into parts of western Scotland as well.


Further east across Scotland, as you can see, it will be another


fine and pretty warm day. So, that's the set up on Friday, what


about Saturday? Cooler conditions spreading into other parts of


northern UK, patchy rain for a time. Further south, the heat holds on.


Into early October, and yes, we could break the all-time October


record. It will be touch and go for sure. A north-south divide on


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