31/01/2012 Newsnight


31/01/2012

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


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Yesterday the new boss of Royal Bank of Scotland fell on his sword

:00:08.:00:12.

and refused his bonus, tonight his predecessor, the man who broke the

:00:12.:00:17.

bank, had his Knighthood removed. Services to banking indeed. But in

:00:17.:00:24.

truth, is Fred Goodwin any worse than many another beneficiary of

:00:24.:00:27.

Britain's quaint honours' system. Are both he and Stephen Hester

:00:27.:00:34.

victims of a new mood in the land, where the rich are loathed, and the

:00:34.:00:39.

mob reaches for pitch forks. Russia says President Assad must be

:00:39.:00:42.

allowed to try to assert his authority in Syria, because without

:00:42.:00:45.

him, there will be civil war, could they be right?

:00:45.:00:52.

Syria has always had a very diverse society, where religious and ethnic

:00:52.:00:55.

minorities have felt comparatively safe, now many members of those

:00:55.:00:59.

minorities are worried about what will happen to them if the regime

:00:59.:01:02.

falls. Thousands of skills learned in

:01:02.:01:07.

schools will no longer be counted as GCSEs, why this bias against

:01:07.:01:16.

learning something useful. How can Facebook be worth tens of,

:01:16.:01:24.

perhaps $100 billion. What exactly is for sale?

:01:24.:01:28.

So farewell then Sir Fred Goodwin, it is not as if there will be many

:01:28.:01:32.

people mourning the fact that the man who wrecked a bank and did so

:01:32.:01:36.

much to bankrupt the country, has been striped of his Knighthood. The

:01:36.:01:40.

hardly heard of honours forfeiture committee, came to an a decision

:01:40.:01:45.

and shifted him into a much more exclusive group of people, Robert

:01:45.:01:49.

Mugabe, Nicolae Ceausescu and Mussolini, to name but three, who

:01:49.:01:54.

have had their knighthoods removed. Is being popular the same as being

:01:54.:01:59.

right? He's probably always been plain old

:01:59.:02:04.

Fred to his family, now he's plain old Fred to everyone else again too.

:02:04.:02:08.

Those three little letters, and long been a cause of anger for the

:02:08.:02:13.

public, and the politicians. We have a special case here of the

:02:13.:02:20.

Royal Bank of Scotland symbolising everything that went wrong in the

:02:20.:02:23.

British economy over the last decade. It is appropriate that Fred

:02:23.:02:27.

Goodwin loses his Knighthood. The focus of the current Government is

:02:27.:02:32.

to make sure we get back all the tax-payers' money that was put into

:02:32.:02:42.
:02:42.:03:01.

the RBS to save it. A statement The decision to give Fred Goodwin

:03:01.:03:05.

his Knighthood in the first place was a source of some embarrassment

:03:05.:03:09.

for Labour, the party even tried to spin the reasons they had given it

:03:09.:03:14.

to him. I think that Sir Fred was nominated for a Knighthood, because

:03:14.:03:22.

of his services for the Prince's Trust, I understand that it was not

:03:23.:03:28.

in recognition of his services to banking.

:03:28.:03:35.

That was not true. Fred Goodwin was knighted in June 2004 in the

:03:35.:03:38.

Queen's birthday Honours List, for services to banking. No-one now, of

:03:38.:03:42.

course, will own up to coming up with the idea, but it was

:03:42.:03:46.

reportedly on the advice of Gordon Brown himself. And came just months

:03:46.:03:53.

after Sir Fred led RBS to record annual profits of �6.2 billion.

:03:53.:03:57.

Most people will welcome the fact that Sir Fred Goodwin lost his

:03:58.:04:01.

Knighthood, isn't it embarrassing for you, as your side gave it to

:04:01.:04:06.

him? It is right Fred Goodwin lost his Knighthood, but it is only the

:04:06.:04:10.

start of what needs to happen in boardrooms, we need to change the

:04:10.:04:13.

bonus culture and have responsibility across the board.

:04:13.:04:16.

That is what the public want, and it is what Government, working with

:04:16.:04:23.

the private sector, needs to deliver. Fred Goodwin sank RBS in

:04:23.:04:33.
:04:33.:04:33.

2007, with his disastrous takeover of the bank ABM, he played a

:04:34.:04:40.

disastrous price where assets were worth less, less than a year later

:04:40.:04:45.

they were begging for a bailout. The complete collapse of the entire

:04:45.:04:49.

banking system could have occurred. Fred is a man of incredible

:04:49.:04:55.

arrogance, who totally believes in his own power, merit and ambition.

:04:55.:04:59.

He's somebody that put the fear of God into everybody around him,

:04:59.:05:02.

somebody that would never be stopped in any ambition that he

:05:02.:05:07.

pursued, and that, of course, was part of his success when he was

:05:07.:05:11.

successful, and his total and utter collapse when he failed at the end

:05:11.:05:16.

of his career. Is there something rather unsavoury in this rush to

:05:16.:05:20.

de-gong Mr Goodwin on the left, he was a welcome visitor once. The

:05:20.:05:23.

politicians only too happy to bask in the wealth and taxes they

:05:23.:05:31.

thought he was bringing. The ABM Amro deal was waved through by all

:05:31.:05:35.

the authorities. The Scottish First Minister, Alex Salmond, wrote to Mr

:05:35.:05:40.

Goodwin, signing the letter, "your's for Scotland", saying he

:05:40.:05:43.

would do anything to help the deal through. I don't turn my back on

:05:43.:05:47.

friends, and Fred is a friend. The Financial Services Authority did

:05:47.:05:53.

not object to the Amro deal being done. The then Prime Minister,

:05:53.:05:57.

Gordon Brown, supported the deal. The Bank of England did not object

:05:57.:06:03.

to the Amro deal going through. And the Treasury, that's Her Majesty's

:06:03.:06:06.

Government did not object to the deal going through. Are they all

:06:06.:06:11.

going to lose their honours and their positions of power? I just do

:06:11.:06:16.

not see that this precedent is a good one to have made. Some

:06:16.:06:21.

suggestion, then, this Knighthood is a proxy for the �700,000 pension

:06:22.:06:25.

that Fred Goodwin refused to relinquish. His eventual decision

:06:25.:06:33.

to hand back half of it did nothing to as sage public anger. Now, --

:06:33.:06:38.

assuage public anger. Now there is one title he would like to be

:06:38.:06:41.

striped of, but would probably have to his grave.

:06:41.:06:48.

With us now to discuss this are the journalist Toby Young, and Will

:06:48.:06:55.

Hutton. Toby Young, what does this decision tell us? It tells us that

:06:55.:07:03.

the Government are willing to sacrifice someone like this in

:07:03.:07:07.

order to secure short-term political gain. It looks as though

:07:07.:07:12.

the tentacles of Number Ten have extended into the Forfeiture

:07:12.:07:17.

Committee. Let there's just no question that he's being

:07:17.:07:21.

scapegoated. Why him and why not the chairman, as the report stated,

:07:21.:07:23.

the chairman of the Financial Services Authority who nodded

:07:23.:07:30.

through the AMro deal, why him and not the chairman of RBS, both of

:07:30.:07:35.

whom have Knighthoods. It is freighted with hypocrisy? I don't

:07:35.:07:42.

think so, it has come late. He was endorsed by every single politician

:07:42.:07:47.

in this country? Honours matter, and I think it is enormously

:07:47.:07:50.

symbolic. I think that people at the top of banking and business

:07:50.:07:55.

generally care about being honoured. And actually, it sends an

:07:55.:08:00.

extraordinary signal. Four years after the event? It would have been

:08:00.:08:04.

better, obviously, for it to have happened earlier, but to happen now

:08:04.:08:09.

and not at all. How long will honours continue to matter if they

:08:09.:08:15.

are politic sized to this extent? - - politicised to this extent?

:08:15.:08:19.

Sometimes honours are given for political reasons, the honours

:08:19.:08:24.

system has always been partly politicised. But this is overt. The

:08:24.:08:30.

forfeiture committee is supposed to consider only those who have, to

:08:30.:08:34.

strip people of their honours, if they have been convicted of a

:08:34.:08:38.

criminal offence, or censureed by a regulatory or professional body.

:08:38.:08:43.

Neither of those things have happened in this case. It is

:08:43.:08:48.

blatantly political. It has cost the country �45 billion? We are

:08:48.:08:55.

living through a once in 80 year event. The scale of which is only

:08:55.:09:03.

becoming obvious to everybody. It is going to take years more more

:09:03.:09:07.

balance sheets to return to normal in banks, and debt levels to return

:09:07.:09:12.

to normal. Years of austerity. This bank would have been bust without

:09:12.:09:16.

�45.5 billion of tax-payers' money going into it. It is in profound

:09:16.:09:20.

trouble. What you are doing with this, and what happened with

:09:20.:09:26.

Stephen Hester's bonus and not accepting T it is a landmark moment.

:09:26.:09:31.

Within 48 hours the country, civil society, the business community,

:09:31.:09:35.

and actually the Forfeiture Committee, are all signalling that

:09:35.:09:39.

the parallel universe in which banking has lived, over the last

:09:39.:09:44.

three years, since 2008, has to come to answered. You can argue it

:09:44.:09:49.

should happen earlier, but thank God it has happened. He wasn't the

:09:49.:09:53.

only chief executive of a bank to make a reckless decision, and to be

:09:53.:09:56.

in some way responsible for the credit crunch. The reason we

:09:56.:09:59.

gambled and were as reckless as they were, is because they needed

:09:59.:10:02.

to be in order to compete. The reason they were able to do that,

:10:02.:10:06.

the reason they were in this framework in which gambling and

:10:06.:10:11.

recklessness was acceptable is the failure of financial regulation.

:10:11.:10:16.

course you can't have capitalism without risk. As a matter of fact,

:10:16.:10:19.

HSBC got through this without Government assistance, although all

:10:19.:10:23.

the banks needed, in the end, part of that enormous cheque that was

:10:23.:10:28.

written, that is true. But the epicentre of this was Edinburgh.

:10:28.:10:33.

The epicentre of what was happening in Edinburgh was the Royal Bank of

:10:33.:10:35.

Scotland. That is why Scottish politicians like Gordon Brown and

:10:35.:10:39.

Alex Salmond, were so keen to advance the case of RBS, and to

:10:39.:10:44.

honour the guy who ran it. When the whole thing went pear-shaped, and

:10:44.:10:48.

it has brought the British economy down, you go for the epicentre.

:10:48.:10:53.

There were other people at the crime, I admit that. Doesn't it

:10:53.:10:56.

stink of hypocrisy, for Ed Milliband, the leader of the Labour

:10:56.:11:00.

Party, to be celebrating the fact that this guy is publicly

:11:00.:11:05.

humiliated, when it was the lack of public regulation that led to these

:11:05.:11:10.

mistakes being made, which the last Government were responsible for?

:11:10.:11:12.

Gordon Brown and the Labour Government, and the light-touch

:11:12.:11:16.

regulation, and by the way, at the time, there weren't very many

:11:16.:11:20.

critics on the right about that. also reflects a change in the

:11:20.:11:23.

public mood, that is the other interesting thing. When you think

:11:23.:11:27.

back to previous times, when you think of the era of the movie Wall

:11:27.:11:34.

Street, for example, when there was a -- an awe at the way capitalism

:11:34.:11:38.

operated at that sort of level, now there is loathing? That is true,

:11:38.:11:43.

people think, rightly, that reward should be related to contribution.

:11:43.:11:47.

Actually, you know, David Cameron has said it, Ed Milliband has said

:11:47.:11:52.

it, and Nick Clegg has said it. used to think that? That was not

:11:52.:11:57.

said in the years since 2008. It is now said. This is part of the story.

:11:57.:12:00.

What is curious about it is, you would have expected the public mood

:12:00.:12:05.

to change in response to the credit crunch. The current financial

:12:05.:12:11.

crisis, while partly blowback from the credit crunch, is also caused

:12:11.:12:17.

by the financial profligacy of various states, particularly states

:12:17.:12:22.

within the eurozone. If anything, you would have thought that the

:12:22.:12:24.

eurozone crisis would have brought about a shift to the right rather

:12:24.:12:29.

than the left. It was the banking crisis, which politically seemed to

:12:29.:12:32.

mean that various centre left Governments were kicked out to be

:12:32.:12:36.

replaceed by centre right Governments. Now we have another

:12:36.:12:44.

crisis with the opposite effect. There is a desire to inspire moral

:12:44.:12:47.

capitalism, and it is welcomed. President Assad of Syria has to go

:12:47.:12:52.

for the sake of the people of his country. That's the burden of the

:12:52.:12:55.

resolution that western and Arab states are trying to get agreed by

:12:55.:13:00.

the UN Security Council. Mr Assad's friends in Moscow, though, are

:13:00.:13:04.

expected to try to knock the thing on the head when it comes to a vote,

:13:04.:13:09.

perhaps the day after tomorrow. Mark Urban has been watching

:13:09.:13:11.

proceedings at the United Nations in New York, which are still going

:13:11.:13:16.

on right now. So where are we at the UN? They are

:13:16.:13:20.

talking away, debating this Moroccan sponsored resolution, they

:13:20.:13:24.

have done this on behalf of the Arab League. It is a cut and paste

:13:24.:13:29.

of something the Arab League agreed nine days ago. As you mentioned in

:13:29.:13:35.

the introduction, the key provisions of which are regime

:13:35.:13:41.

change. Asking President Assad to step aside for his deputy, and

:13:41.:13:46.

talking about a transfer to a different system. This is the first

:13:46.:13:50.

serious attempt to grip this in the UN Security Council, when the

:13:50.:13:53.

threat of veto before was enough to stop it. Many think the same could

:13:53.:13:57.

happen again now. The Russians are batting away for Assad, aren't

:13:57.:14:03.

they? The key thing here, I think, is both Russia and China have a

:14:03.:14:08.

sense of deja vu about this. The resolution in 1973, that came

:14:08.:14:13.

through last March, to enable the Libyan intervention started in a

:14:13.:14:19.

similar way, with the Arab League as the point men. They say it then

:14:19.:14:23.

turned into, despite all the evenhanded language, humanitarian

:14:23.:14:26.

language, a vehicle for western military intervention to top a lead

:14:26.:14:29.

they are didn't like. They say it is all very similar. Speaking

:14:30.:14:35.

before they came on air, Hillary Clinton tackled that head-on.

:14:35.:14:41.

know that some members here may be concerned that the Security Council

:14:41.:14:48.

could be headed towards another Libya. That is a false analogy.

:14:48.:14:54.

Syria is a unique situation that requires its own approach, tailored

:14:54.:14:59.

to the specific circumstances occurring there. That is exactly

:14:59.:15:05.

what the Arab League has proposed. A path for a political transition

:15:05.:15:14.

that would preserve Syria's unity and institutions. Of course Russia

:15:14.:15:23.

doesn't want Syrian intervention but intervention, but they are

:15:23.:15:26.

worried that this resolution would leave no-one in charge, and the

:15:26.:15:29.

opposition forces would get involved in a serious struggle. The

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debate will go on for days, potentially, it is not through the

:15:33.:15:40.

resolution will go through. -- it is not clear if the

:15:40.:15:47.

resolution will go through. If the regime fall it is will

:15:48.:15:53.

trigger civil war is the concern. But increasingly it looks like it

:15:53.:15:58.

will happen. Syria has some of the smallest minute religious

:15:58.:16:06.

minorities in the world. Some claim their future would be perilous.

:16:06.:16:13.

We have this report. In the language Jesus spoke, in the

:16:13.:16:17.

country where St Paul saw the light, Syrian Christians celebrate their

:16:17.:16:27.
:16:27.:16:27.

faith as they have for nearly two millennia.

:16:27.:16:34.

The tightness of the aremaic liturgy, veils are a sudden sense

:16:34.:16:41.

of danger. Among the worshippers, refugees from neighbouring Iraq.

:16:41.:16:45.

Much of its ancient Christian minority has fled under Islamic

:16:45.:16:50.

intolerance. Now, beyond the walls of this

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monastery, a haven of calm on the road to Damascus, Syria too is

:16:55.:17:00.

dissolving into civil strive. Syria's always had a very diverse

:17:00.:17:04.

society, where religious and ethnic minorities have felt comparatively

:17:04.:17:08.

safe. Now, many members of those minorities are worried about what

:17:08.:17:15.

will happen to them if the regime falls.

:17:15.:17:18.

In these uncertain times, in a country where Christians make up

:17:18.:17:23.

nearly 10% of the population, the Archbishop of Damascus knows better

:17:23.:17:27.

than to become a Government whose days may be numbered. But nor will

:17:27.:17:32.

he back a revolution, morally encouraged by the west, whose

:17:32.:17:37.

consequences could be perilous. hearing from the western countries

:17:37.:17:45.

that they are pushing on revolution, and I'm hearing that some parties

:17:45.:17:50.

are helping arm the group. This is not helping the stability, it is

:17:50.:18:00.

not resolving any problems. In towns gripped by revolution, the

:18:00.:18:08.

Islamic of a firmation of faith, "God is most great", is it, as

:18:08.:18:13.

protestors say, just a traditional rallying call in a country which is

:18:13.:18:16.

at least three quarters Sunni Muslims. The expression of

:18:16.:18:21.

willingness to die for a cause, or is it, as the regime maintains, a

:18:21.:18:25.

sign that Syria's secular system could be destroyed by religious

:18:25.:18:31.

sectarianism. These are Government supporters,

:18:31.:18:36.

chanting for Syrians to remain united. They are mainly Alawites,

:18:36.:18:40.

members of a Shi'ite sect, that includes more than one in ten

:18:40.:18:44.

Syrians. Downtrodden for centuries, Alawites have been more favoured

:18:44.:18:50.

since the Assad family, also Alawites, came to power 40-odd

:18:50.:18:53.

years ago. Most families probably have at least one member employed

:18:53.:18:56.

by the security forces. In this district of the increasingly

:18:56.:19:01.

segregated city of Homs, Syria's most fought over city, they

:19:01.:19:07.

bitterly oppose the revolution that is raging just a few blocks away.

:19:07.:19:12.

TRANSLATION: Our's is one of thousands of families who has had

:19:12.:19:16.

to flee their homes. I used to live in a different area, now we all

:19:16.:19:21.

have to move because of the armed gangs.

:19:21.:19:25.

Government supporters often cite this anti-Alawite threat from a

:19:25.:19:35.

popular rebel cleric, to try to prove the opposition's sectarianism.

:19:35.:19:43.

"we won't hurt those Alawites who are neutral", he says, but adds, in

:19:43.:19:48.

a line certainly not typical of the opposition, still talking about

:19:48.:19:52.

Alawites, "those who fight against us, I swear by God almighty, we

:19:52.:20:00.

will turn them into mincemeat, and feed them to the dogs."

:20:00.:20:07.

You Fears of score d -- fears of score-settling are inevitably high

:20:07.:20:13.

in places like this, in the hills above dam mass cushion where

:20:13.:20:18.

Alawites were encouraged to settle, by Bashar al-Assad's father,

:20:18.:20:23.

perhaps to control the less reliable Sunnis living below.

:20:23.:20:30.

Almost all of the regime's trusted servants are Alawites. Among them

:20:30.:20:38.

this man, the owner of an advertising agency, decharged with

:20:38.:20:44.

designing a new logo for the leading party. He believes top-down

:20:44.:20:48.

political reform is still possible and it is the best way to avoid the

:20:48.:20:54.

sectarianism, which the regime says, are being stirred up by armed gangs.

:20:54.:20:59.

TRANSLATION: I'm afraid of instability, of the armed gangs

:20:59.:21:02.

that cause destruction, of the invasion of negative ideas into

:21:02.:21:07.

society. I'm not afraid of sectarian attacks. I'm gambling on

:21:07.:21:09.

the common sense of the Syrian people. They have a completely

:21:09.:21:14.

different outlook to others in the region. All the sects here value

:21:14.:21:18.

human life. They reject the violence you see in other places.

:21:18.:21:22.

Our main enemy now is fear itself. We have to support the existing

:21:22.:21:26.

system, because it is the foundation of our society. And

:21:26.:21:29.

reforms that Government is proposing, will help us build a new

:21:29.:21:34.

democracy. But some say it is the President

:21:34.:21:39.

who is spreading the fear. I'm going it meet one of the Alawites,

:21:39.:21:43.

who are active in the opposition, despite, what they say, are

:21:43.:21:50.

Government scare tactics. TRANSLATION: In areas where I'm

:21:50.:21:55.

from, people live in terror now, because of the propaganda about

:21:55.:21:57.

hidden explosives and armed gangs. People believe those stories, the

:21:57.:22:01.

people are being killed because they are Alawite, it is all lies.

:22:01.:22:07.

But the regime knows how to play this game. The Alawites were a poor

:22:07.:22:11.

sect, so many joined the army or police long ago. When the

:22:11.:22:16.

President's father came to power, he convinced the Alawites that the

:22:16.:22:19.

regime was protecting them. Now even people who don't like the

:22:19.:22:22.

Government are afraid of the revolution, because they are frayed

:22:22.:22:26.

of the Muslim Brotherhood, that they will force men to go to the

:22:26.:22:32.

mosque, force women to wear hijab, and not let children go to school.

:22:32.:22:37.

This young Christian opposition activist, also rejects the regime's

:22:37.:22:41.

propaganda. She says the revolution isn't dividing people, it is

:22:41.:22:48.

uniting them. We say we are from this area and they know we are

:22:48.:22:51.

Christian, you can see how surprised and happy they are we are

:22:52.:23:00.

with them and support them, that we are part of this revolution. That's

:23:00.:23:04.

like we go in some houses that we will be the first Christian people

:23:04.:23:11.

to enter this house, and they really welcome us in a very amazing

:23:12.:23:20.

way. That gives the joy. So when the Government says these are

:23:20.:23:28.

terrorists who are trying to stop and end the stability of Syria,

:23:28.:23:33.

what do you think? This Government they are the one who is make this

:23:33.:23:39.

division between people. When you go out and you shout you feel you

:23:39.:23:46.

are free. In those moments, even if they are seconds, you feel you are

:23:46.:23:54.

free. Nobody will go back home. Even if a lot of people get killed.

:23:54.:24:00.

After decades of stability in Syria, wedged between war torn Lebanon and

:24:00.:24:03.

Iraq. Who wouldn't be at least a little afraid of the future now.

:24:03.:24:07.

The more the regime plays on those fears, and the longer the violence

:24:07.:24:13.

goes on, the greater the risk that those warnings of civil war will

:24:13.:24:16.

eventually become self-fulfiling provecy.

:24:16.:24:22.

You think you or your children got a GCSE or two, they didn't,

:24:22.:24:28.

necessarily, many vocational courses, subgts like nail

:24:28.:24:36.

technology or fish husbandry, will no longer be counted. The education

:24:36.:24:40.

department claims that every child with a good or disadvantaged

:24:40.:24:49.

background leaves school with a good GCSE pass in English and maths.

:24:49.:24:53.

These students are getting experience outside the formal

:24:53.:24:57.

classroom. The qualifications they build up here will be equivalent to

:24:57.:25:05.

up to four GCSEs. It helps the school in the league

:25:05.:25:09.

tables. As far as these 14-year- olds are concerned, it will help

:25:09.:25:14.

them to earn a living. With brick laying you can go get an

:25:14.:25:18.

apprenticeship, or you can go do other things like you can do it at

:25:18.:25:22.

college, or whatever. You get a good skill out of it. You are also

:25:22.:25:27.

getting the four GCSEs, which is kind of important. They are not

:25:27.:25:32.

happy that in future this course, whether at certificate or the

:25:32.:25:37.

higher diploma level, will count as just one GCSE. I think it is a load

:25:37.:25:45.

of rubbish, really. With the GCSEs you are doing more work, you are

:25:45.:25:48.

getting a better qualification for it, if you are doing one you are

:25:48.:25:53.

doing class work, not practical, like this. Building your wall,

:25:53.:25:56.

taking an engine to pieces, that is the bit that buys them into their

:25:56.:26:01.

education. That makes them enjoy coming to school. It buys them into

:26:01.:26:06.

their English and maths. The principle of vocational

:26:06.:26:13.

training is not in doubt. But the value of some of the courses is.

:26:13.:26:17.

Horse care and nail technology are all well and good if you want to

:26:17.:26:22.

qualify as a Barbie doll, but should they give a school a leg up

:26:22.:26:29.

in the league stables. At the moment there are 3,175

:26:29.:26:35.

equivalent courses. In future, just 125 of them will count towards

:26:35.:26:40.

GCSEs. Among those erased by the Government, a nail technology skill,

:26:40.:26:46.

worth two GCSEs, practical office skills, another two, and fish

:26:46.:26:55.

husbandry, again, worth two GCSEs. The vocational courses of offered

:26:55.:27:02.

at Feltham are seen as vital in an area of en trenched unemployment.

:27:02.:27:05.

Students studying childcare spend at least day a week out on direct

:27:05.:27:09.

work experience. The school will continue to prioritise the

:27:09.:27:15.

practical element, but that means less time for academic GCSEs, and a

:27:15.:27:20.

hit in the league tables. vocational courses to get the

:27:20.:27:25.

practical issues take a lot of time. We may be judged as failing in that

:27:25.:27:28.

we have some section, about 20% of our population, will not look like

:27:29.:27:33.

they are taking a full range of eight GCSEs.

:27:33.:27:40.

While these Feltham pupils tended to their vocational courses, the

:27:40.:27:44.

Education Secretary defended the changes. Mr Gove, again, lambasted

:27:44.:27:49.

some critics of academy schools, which he insisted are raising

:27:49.:27:54.

standards. We have had a reprice of the all the enemies of promise, who

:27:54.:28:00.

fought against what Andrew Adonais and Tony Blair were trying to do

:28:00.:28:04.

reconstituting themselves. It is a great pity the Labour Party hasn't

:28:04.:28:10.

spoken against this campaign. Gof told MPs he was not undermining

:28:10.:28:14.

vocational training. If you say to a student, that we the state are

:28:14.:28:18.

going to value this qualification as an equivalent, the colleges to

:28:18.:28:24.

which they apply subsequently and the employers say no, that child

:28:24.:28:30.

will understandably feel betrayed and let down. Praised and pillaried,

:28:30.:28:38.

as Mr Gove's favourite teacher, Catherine Sing h, is setting up a

:28:38.:28:43.

new school, favoured on his principle that every child can

:28:43.:28:50.

receive good GCSE passes. They need a qualification even to be a

:28:50.:28:54.

hairdresser. Which children are they we say are not academic, it is

:28:54.:28:58.

often children who come from states, poorer and more disadvantaged, we

:28:58.:29:04.

expect less of them, we are not doing favours. Michael Gove says

:29:04.:29:08.

the most useful courses, like this one, will count towards league

:29:08.:29:12.

table. In a time of rising youth unemployment, the UK figure stands

:29:12.:29:15.

at more than a million out of work. The Government is being accused of

:29:15.:29:25.

making things worse. What should our children be taught, Stephen

:29:25.:29:29.

Twigg and Graham Stuart are both huer. There are hundreds of

:29:29.:29:32.

thousands of these courses being followed in schools. Is the

:29:33.:29:40.

Government really saying children doing them are wasting their time?

:29:40.:29:42.

They are saying there is a huge increase over the years, driven by

:29:42.:29:48.

the league stable, and schools have gained a system, in some cases,

:29:48.:29:51.

putting children...There hundreds of thousands of children

:29:51.:29:54.

out there, and parents supporting them in doing that. Are you saying

:29:54.:29:59.

they are wasting their time? What Alison Wolf who did a review of the

:29:59.:30:02.

Vocational Qualifications for the Government, saying many of the

:30:02.:30:06.

courses don't lead anywhere, and there needs to be a review. A lot

:30:06.:30:12.

are wasting their time? Alison skaf Wolf, the expert said a lot of

:30:12.:30:16.

cases didn't lead to education or a job and needed to be reviewed. They

:30:16.:30:19.

were given too much value in the league stables. Your hands are

:30:19.:30:23.

pretty dirty on all of this, in effect, you have encouraged

:30:23.:30:28.

children to waste their time at school? It was right to have the

:30:28.:30:33.

review, but I'm worried it will be the baby out with the bath water.

:30:33.:30:41.

Some of the GCSEs have buy in from employers and universities. You

:30:41.:30:49.

recognise You recognise some are not? Recreated the diplomas, the

:30:49.:30:56.

equivalent of four or five GCSEs. Employers have said the engineering

:30:56.:31:01.

dip plom ma is a great qualification.

:31:01.:31:05.

That needs to change. That is not me saying that, that is some of the

:31:05.:31:07.

top engineering employers saying that.

:31:07.:31:10.

Why has there been such a conspicuous failure to engage with

:31:11.:31:17.

this question of what children, who are not going to follow the GCSE,

:31:17.:31:22.

A-level, university route, do with their time at school? One of the

:31:22.:31:26.

problems is the measures we have in schools, and there is one

:31:26.:31:32.

overwhelming one, that is five good GCSEs. Today my select committee

:31:32.:31:35.

and are were challenging the secretary, the last Government and

:31:35.:31:37.

this Government putting too much on that one measure, it drives

:31:37.:31:44.

performance in schools. It means the poorest performing bottom 20%

:31:44.:31:48.

in good schools, don't score there. It is important to have courses

:31:48.:31:53.

where they can achieve and go along. Why have the metrics been set

:31:53.:31:57.

wrongly? Successive Governments have failed to find a more balanced

:31:57.:32:01.

scorecard. Why? We privilege certain forms of learnings, there

:32:01.:32:06.

is a notion of the academic. This idea there is academic here and

:32:06.:32:12.

vocational there is nonsense. English and mathematics are

:32:12.:32:17.

academic subjects but hugely practical as well. There has been a

:32:17.:32:22.

big debate over the years. This announcement today does the mistake,

:32:22.:32:26.

to privilege certain sorts of learning over others That is why I

:32:27.:32:32.

have said it is baby out with the bath water. You are imprecise where

:32:32.:32:36.

the baby is? It is important to looks a Alison Wolf did, the report

:32:36.:32:41.

is a rigorous piece of work, some changes make sense, not all of them.

:32:41.:32:46.

You think it is right to chuck some out, why ones might be and which

:32:46.:32:52.

not want? The bonus system we developed had four or five GCSEs,

:32:52.:32:56.

instructed with lawyers and universities. It is not safe to

:32:56.:33:03.

reduce them from four GCSEs to one. The figure of 15, how many would

:33:03.:33:10.

you say? -- 125, how many would you say? I wouldn't say. It doesn't

:33:10.:33:17.

mean they are invalid. 500, a 1,000? I wouldn't put a figure on

:33:17.:33:24.

it, you have to look at all of them, some have the equivalent of four

:33:24.:33:29.

GCSEs and they should maybe only have two. You don't know about it

:33:29.:33:32.

all? I don't know because I have to look at each individual

:33:32.:33:37.

qualification. I do know there are vigorous qualifications downgraded

:33:37.:33:40.

today that should not be, that is wrong. What the Government is doing

:33:40.:33:45.

is rushing into a decision on this. When they should be consulting far

:33:45.:33:50.

more wide low, building a cross- party consensus, getting support

:33:50.:33:58.

from employers. They have a cross- party consensus, you agree with

:33:58.:34:04.

them? I don't agree with what they are doing with the dip plom mas.

:34:04.:34:08.

is a technical skill for the Labour Party to point in two directions at

:34:08.:34:14.

the same time. On the issue of the dip plom ma, I was on the committee

:34:14.:34:18.

when Ed Balls was pushing it through in a hurry. It was the most

:34:18.:34:21.

complicated than any body had seen, we asked him to slow down and get

:34:21.:34:27.

it right. We have failed to get the right structure in place for

:34:28.:34:30.

Vocational Qualifications, it is tremenduously important. The last

:34:30.:34:35.

Government made a mess of it. There are only a few bits of the

:34:35.:34:44.

qualification that are good, like the engineering. It is going to get

:34:44.:34:51.

worse, many more children at school until the age of 18, for whom some

:34:51.:34:57.

vocational qualification is the way to go. Why -- Why didn't you think

:34:57.:35:01.

it through when you looked at the school leaving age? The diplomas

:35:02.:35:09.

were not perfect, but some of them including engineering, they were

:35:09.:35:15.

good rigorous qualifications looked at in schools. We should look at

:35:15.:35:17.

some positives. We have the university technical colleges from

:35:17.:35:23.

the age of 14, we have allson Wolf saying more children at 14 should

:35:23.:35:33.
:35:33.:35:33.

go into FE colleges. We need action on that. This is an inishal stab at

:35:33.:35:37.

reducing the number -- initial stab at reducing numbers. We can add to

:35:37.:35:41.

the number but make sure we never again put children on courses that

:35:41.:35:46.

don't lead anywhere, and does mean they are wasting their time.

:35:46.:35:50.

Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door

:35:50.:35:56.

they used to say. The inventor of social network on the Internet,

:35:56.:36:02.

they may pay you up to $100 billion. Facebook offers itself for sale

:36:02.:36:08.

tomorrow, it claims to have 800 million users, not bad considering

:36:08.:36:12.

it didn't exist until a year ago. We will discuss the business model

:36:12.:36:17.

in a short time. First we look at how it can become to be worth so

:36:17.:36:21.

much so fast. If you are on Facebook, this is how

:36:21.:36:26.

Mark Zuckerberg wants you to tell your story from now on. The new

:36:26.:36:31.

timeline laying out your history for your friends. Zuckerberg's own

:36:31.:36:38.

Facebook life begins in 2004, when he starts Facebook in his bedroom.

:36:38.:36:42.

Now he's going to float on the stock market, after years of

:36:42.:36:50.

refusing to sell up to all sorts of suitors. The hardest one was when

:36:50.:36:55.

Yahoo offered $1 billion. That was the first big offer, I knew nothing

:36:55.:36:58.

about business or what a company might be worth.

:36:58.:37:03.

Until now, it has been hard to know exactly what Facebook is worth. But

:37:03.:37:11.

private stakes in the firm, were trading recently at a qalation of

:37:11.:37:19.

�80 billion. There is talk of -- Wall Street is very excited. One

:37:19.:37:25.

man who got overexcited in the last dotcom bubble is trying to stay

:37:25.:37:28.

calm? There is pandemonium in the United States over the deal. It is

:37:29.:37:31.

shre overdone, this is a very mature company. Everyone is excited

:37:31.:37:36.

to see the numbers, but the hype is completely absurd, relative loo

:37:36.:37:41.

what the likely event will be. Facebook's whole business is a bet

:37:41.:37:48.

on us. The 800 million users flowing down its mighty river.

:37:48.:37:52.

Someone once said you are not paying to be here, you are not the

:37:52.:37:58.

customer, you are the products. Our likes and dislikes are a vital

:37:58.:38:03.

currency for Facebook, advertisers could target us with personalised

:38:03.:38:07.

messages. Are we worth as much as investors seem to think.

:38:07.:38:10.

What's happening here? We are starting to build a new campaign

:38:10.:38:15.

for job sites. We will build some perzone nas, looking for people

:38:15.:38:22.

looking for a new job, effectively. At this digital marketing agency,

:38:22.:38:26.

they are finding clients being attracted to the targeting that

:38:26.:38:31.

Facebook can offer. If one wanted to target me, it would be a 43-

:38:31.:38:37.

year-old, living in Kilburn, liking beer. They could target me

:38:37.:38:42.

precisely and show me whatever ad they would like. It is interwoven

:38:42.:38:49.

with the platform itself. Something like sponsored stories, advertising

:38:49.:38:54.

off the back of a recommendation, I think they will get great results

:38:55.:38:58.

if they keep this. Facebook's timeline will intercept with a

:38:58.:39:05.

larger and more powerful one, Google, the company owns the

:39:05.:39:09.

lucrative search advertising market, with Google Plus, it would like to

:39:09.:39:16.

boss social advertising too. Can Facebook ever be as big a beast.

:39:16.:39:20.

This is going to be large and successful business. That said, I'm

:39:21.:39:24.

not convinced it will be as great a business as some people think. This

:39:24.:39:31.

is still a social media business there have been lots of social

:39:31.:39:34.

media businesses on-line and elsewhere. It turns out they are

:39:34.:39:40.

just not that spectacular at advertising medium. Google found it

:39:40.:39:44.

miraculous product where you go to the search engine and say I'm

:39:44.:39:49.

looking for a particular product, you get an ad for it, it is a

:39:49.:39:54.

perfect advertising vehicle. If I'm a betting man, and I am, I would

:39:54.:39:59.

bet on Google, fantastic business that works well. Facebook is a good

:39:59.:40:04.

eachway bet at the moment. Not a certainty. The early signs are

:40:04.:40:09.

encouraging. What do go wrong in terms of -- what could go wrong in

:40:09.:40:15.

terms of Facebook? It is whether advertisers could get a good turn

:40:15.:40:21.

on a scale big enough to support the evaluation. That is the big

:40:21.:40:24.

risk. Whatever price a company gets for

:40:24.:40:28.

its shares, Mark Zuckerberg's next step along his time again, will

:40:28.:40:32.

confirm him as the world's richest 27-year-old, then comes the hard

:40:32.:40:37.

bit, keeping Facebook users happy, while targeting with ever more

:40:37.:40:45.

advertising. Can it possibly be worth up to $100 billion. The Brent

:40:45.:40:47.

Hoberman, and Aleks Krotoski are here.

:40:47.:40:52.

What is for sale here is effectively us, anyone who has ever

:40:52.:40:59.

put anything on Facebook, isn't it? It is absolutely, 850 million users,

:40:59.:41:03.

it is the lock in Facebook will have on the users. If I have

:41:03.:41:07.

invested the time to pull my friends in there, it is hard to

:41:07.:41:11.

switch over. What Facebook can do is influence my behaviour.

:41:11.:41:17.

Does that appeal to you? I find it quite frightening. What Facebook

:41:17.:41:24.

and things like Google do, is they help us make sense of the vast

:41:24.:41:28.

information on-line. Google says a model if everybody says this is

:41:28.:41:31.

good manufactures then it is relevant and value for me. What

:41:31.:41:35.

Facebook does, slightly different, and is seemingly more value is it

:41:35.:41:40.

says, if all of my friends think that this is valuable, then it is

:41:40.:41:44.

valuable and relevant to me. That is what it is that they trade on.

:41:44.:41:48.

Which is why they want more and more of our information.

:41:48.:41:56.

It turns, does it not, Facebook's customer, from a user of an

:41:56.:42:03.

apparent service into Koon sumeer - - consumer and target for

:42:03.:42:08.

advertiser. Yes, and also an Evangelist, if you like a product

:42:09.:42:13.

and you become an Evangelist, and the message is sent to your friends,

:42:13.:42:17.

it is incredibly powerful marketing. The data you give and the ability

:42:17.:42:24.

for those to target that data is the holely grail of advertising.

:42:25.:42:29.

provides an intentionality that advertisers haven't had. First of

:42:29.:42:34.

all, you have the content is in exactly the right place for the

:42:34.:42:39.

right eyeballs to see T because of the all of the things we put on-

:42:39.:42:43.

line, whether it is photographs of our kids, or whatever, put in front

:42:43.:42:47.

of the Taj Mahal. We are saying to the technology, this is what we are

:42:47.:42:51.

interested in, this is the kind of thing we want. What we're going to

:42:51.:42:55.

do, this is what we're going to buy. That is phenomenally valuable. That

:42:55.:43:01.

truly is the innovation. A lot of people will see this as rather

:43:01.:43:07.

sinister? Oh yes. People do it willingly? I don't think that they

:43:08.:43:11.

necessarily go through the fine print of 35 pages of terms and

:43:11.:43:14.

conditions and say they will accept. Most people are haep happy to say

:43:14.:43:19.

it is a free service, it is changing the way I'm communicating

:43:19.:43:26.

with friends. I don't mind giving out the information. There was one

:43:26.:43:31.

a survey, how much would you have to offer to teenagers to give way

:43:31.:43:36.

their on-line information about their lives, the answer was �10.

:43:36.:43:43.

What does that tell us about teenagers today. What it does is it

:43:43.:43:50.

turns us from users into victims n a way. Or evangelist is the

:43:50.:43:56.

positive way of looking at it. is more that we become commodities,

:43:57.:44:03.

this is the realisation of a process that has been on going for

:44:03.:44:08.

a time. This is the most effective and streamlined way the advertising

:44:08.:44:12.

model. Let's look at the way investors will look at it. There is

:44:12.:44:17.

Facebooks out there, shortly, there is Google out there, is there room

:44:17.:44:21.

for the two of them? As I said before, they approached the same

:44:21.:44:24.

problem in two different ways. What is interesting is how they are

:44:24.:44:29.

trying to interact. There is this kind of dance they are doing

:44:29.:44:33.

together. Google has its social networking service, Google Plus,

:44:33.:44:37.

trying to do what Facebook has done, it is trying to fill the holes and

:44:37.:44:41.

put a plaster on some of the problems that people have. Users

:44:41.:44:48.

have with Facebook. This idea when you put something out there 2 goes

:44:48.:44:52.

to all your friends, despite them being friends, work mates or family.

:44:52.:45:00.

Google is trying to do this social searching. But it isth also

:45:00.:45:08.

provides n some ways, an enpsyche immediateic approach --

:45:08.:45:12.

encyclopaedic approach. Google is more like you are looking for

:45:12.:45:19.

something and it provides a way. is good Facebook has come up here

:45:19.:45:25.

and given a challenge to Google. Facebook says its content is not

:45:26.:45:34.

searchable on their sites. I don't think the use will be the amount of

:45:34.:45:40.

time people are putting into Facebook. Would you invest in it?

:45:40.:45:50.
:45:50.:45:54.

did get caught in last minute dot comb -- lastminute.com, I lost many

:45:54.:45:57.

money there. They have product geniuss knowing what their

:45:57.:46:02.

customers want and love. They may well be able to grow into the

:46:02.:46:08.

valuation. If it is $100 million do they merit it today, neither did

:46:08.:46:11.

Google when it went public, and people did well who invested in

:46:11.:46:18.

that. Assuming you had the money, would you invest in it? What would

:46:18.:46:23.

I do with that kind of money. There is the unique selling point, it is

:46:24.:46:28.

the lock-in, that Brent reference before. This idea that it has this

:46:28.:46:31.

way of attracting people and keeping people in because your

:46:32.:46:35.

friends are there. The other thing is I don't think they have started

:46:35.:46:41.

yet on how well they can monitor it. The public will make them do that a

:46:41.:46:47.

lot more. Thank you very much, the daily --

:46:47.:46:51.

Daily Express has unearthed an American medal report. Otherwise

:46:51.:46:59.

they are all going with Fred Goodwin, the Mail, the FT, Andy's

:46:59.:47:06.

on the front page of the Telegraph. That's it for tonight. We will be

:47:06.:47:16.
:47:16.:47:39.

That's it for tonight. We will be Payback time weather wise, after a

:47:39.:47:43.

mild winter. Much colder this week, colder through the next few days.

:47:43.:47:48.

By day and night. Cold and frosty start to the day. Lots of sunshine

:47:48.:47:53.

out there, blight, crisping and sunny, very cold, particularly in

:47:53.:47:57.

the south. A risk easterly wind developing. Significant wind shield

:47:57.:48:02.

here. Lots and lots of sunshine. If you get well wrapped up in the

:48:02.:48:07.

sunshine it will feel lovely. In the breeze cold. Any flurries

:48:07.:48:10.

across Devon and Cornwall will fade away. Increasing amounts of

:48:10.:48:15.

sunshine as we end the day. For Wales a beautiful day. Beautiful

:48:15.:48:19.

but cold. Further north across the country, the winds are lighter, of

:48:20.:48:24.

some benefit, cloud dripping on the east coast in Northern Ireland. For

:48:24.:48:28.

Scotland too, sunny across many parts, but a bit more cloud

:48:28.:48:34.

developing. I think I could just see the odd flurry of snow, but

:48:34.:48:38.

basically dry. Not much changing on Thursday, the risk of one or two

:48:38.:48:43.

wint free showers on the east coast of Scotland and England. London

:48:43.:48:48.

could catch a snow shower too. Generally most places are try,

:48:48.:48:53.

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