11/06/2013 Newsnight


The green shoots of economic recovery; the Turks attack their protesters; Russia's treatment of gays and the science of invisibility. With Jeremy Paxman.

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Can it really be true? Are we beginning to see what were once


famously or infamously called the green shoots coming up in the


British economy? So how is the market doing beyond the ages of the


south-east bubble? 5 miles from London, is there any


sign of a real recovery. We have gathered among others the


author of the phrase "green shoots" to lend us some fresh horticultural


insights. In Istanbul the riot police attempt to clear Taksim


Square. Why do the Turkish authorities finally lose patients.


Also tonight, on the streets of Moscow, the punch-ups are about


parliament's overwhelming decision to pass anti-gay legislation. What


is it with the Russians and homosexuality. This man lost his


job as a television presenter after coming out as gay there.


Scientists can now make a cat invisible, sort of. We will ask one


scientist how long before we can use it on something bigger, like a


television producer? How do you feel? Not physically but


how do you feel about the state of the country? More figures appeared


today including an estimate that the economy grew at 0.6% in the


last three months. It is not what you would call spectacular, it is


of a piece with other assessments that say after a couple of years of


stagnation that the economy is perhaps finely moving. Does it mean


George Osborne's therapy is working, or is what growth there despite his


ministrations. There is life outside statistics, we send Paul


Mason to see how it looks in Rugby. For economyists the truth lies in


the detail. You can scan the graphs and charts and watch the markets


but the only true way to spot a recovery is to go to the kind of


place it would be unmissable. Which for me means a side street in


Rugby, Warwickshire. If we ever do get a sustained economic recovery


then this street is probably one of the first places we might see it.


Because Rugby, the town, is just outside the south-east property


market. So house prices here have been stagnant for five years. What


we are looking for is an up tick. For all the arguments about double-


dips, what the GDP data shows is a recovery faltering after 2010. The


latest sign of an upturn is what purchasing managers are reporting


across the whole economy. This line shows the balance between those


reporting an increase in sales and those a downturn. It is now been


positive since the start of the year. Le


Of course it has been positive before, so why should we trust it


now? I think the recovery we are seeing is barely broad-based. It


looks like maybe consumers are spending a bit more. But it looks


like some improvement in the industrial sector in manufacturing.


Even possibly an improvement in construction. So it seems to be


fairly across the board that we are seeing a bit of a pick up now.


But to the Government is pouring tax-payers' money and banks'


support into a recovery of a different kind. That is in the


housing market. Funding For Lending, help to buy. There is billions


earmarked to get house prices on the move. So what's happening.


These were built prior to the recession in 2007 and they were


purchased for �80,000 roughly. We saw in 2009 they went down to


�65,000. We have seen recently they have recovered to almost full value


for what they were originally purchased for. Definitely the


market is improving. What do you think is driving that? Definitely


the first time buyers, the mortgages are being freed up. Rates


are getting much better and also the Government's help to buy scheme


is definitely having a beneficial effect on the market.


Rugby also happens to be one of those places where a bit of civil


engineering might boost things. This is the place where the M6 runs


out and the east-west route becomes, well, a bottleneck. There is an


extra �3 billion nationally earmarked for infrastructure


spending, and because of that work could start to expand this junction


next year. Until then construction industries


are having to make do with smaller stuff. Here an office block is


under way. If I asked you the straight question are we in a


sustained recovery in your sector? No. Really?No. We are, there is


work around, it is generally of a much smaller nature. It is highly


competitive. There are sub- contractors, main contractors who


are going into receivership as a result of the pressures upon them.


We are not out of this yet, we are a long way from it. In general we


are seeing very tight times. We are seeing it right the way through the


supply chain. We are seeing the supply chain not being paid. We are


seeing main contractors not being paid. What would a sustained


recovery in your sector look like? Increasing workload, I guess. Very


simple, more work. This is how the recovery was


supposed to happen. At a manufacturing company in Rugby,


they have just built this giant box and it will be used to transport


rotors across. Talk to manufacturers and it is the same


story as construction, small bits of work here and there but a


problem getting paid. What would a real recovery look like and this


workshop? There would be two or three more people in it. In a real


recovery? Yeah, and hopefully more investment in the machines.


would be able to tell if there was a real sustained recovery? We would


see that. At the moment we should be selling a lot more RSJs to


builders, it is flat at the moment. Where do you go for finance, with


builders before finance was the problem. How does it feel to you?


With finance we have been very lucky, we just work on the


overdraft. We work on that. But I must admit we have done some very


big jobs just at the moment and customers are taking longer to pay.


Which has hit us and we have had to, for the first time in my highsry,


we have had to borrow money -- history, we have had to borrow


money just to keep going. Even now manufacturing is nowhere near


recovered to what it was before the crisis. The whole project of


rebalancing by exports and private investment is just hard to find.


The hopes all along have been with businesses and, porters driving the


recovery. That really still doesn't seem to be happening. It seems to


be consumers that are coming to the economy's rescue, perhaps by


borrowing a bit more. That is really what we wanted to avoid. We


are at the point now where any growth is better than no growth. So


if consumers are going to lead the recovery from now, then that is for


the best. For many people here any kind of


recovery will be welcome. They are using up their reserves of ready


cash. You can see how it might pan out,


house prices rise, some people get more money in their pockets and the


whole consumer scene becomes a little less reliant on pawnbrokers.


The problem is the recovery we were supposed to be having was led by


investment, manufacturing and exports and this is not it.


In fact it is a recovery with low wages, high borrowing and a one-way


bet on house prices. Sound familiar? With us now are the


journalists and economists, Nando De Colo, former Chancellor of the -


- Chancellor of the Exchequer, Norman Lamont, and Gillian Tett.


Each of them has selected their recent favourite graph. You are


going first Gillian. This is your graph. This chart is very important


for how we feel and in terms of what happens next in the economy.


It is the source of some dispute between the IMF and the Treasury.


If you are feeling optimistic you can say look the level of debt


relative to income has fallen sharply since the peak during the


credit bubble. Just to explain for the idiots, myself among us. That


shows the amount of debt that the average household has acquired, or


is carrying? Relative to how much money they are earning each month.


If you sat down and totted up all your credit cards, your car loans,


your mortgage, that would be the total debt. During the credit


bubble it got very high, now it has come down a bit. That should mean


that people start to feel less under pressure financially and more


willing to actually go out and spend. That is what the British


Treasury hopes. This is a good graph? Except, but, there is a big


sting in the tail. If you look at the chart it hasn't come down very


far. It has come down a lot less distance than in a country like


America where it has dropped quite sharply the problem, as people like


the IMF say, is unfortunately there is still an awful lot of


rebalancing that needs to go on. Not just inside people's household


finances but across the economy as a whole. What do you make of this


graph? I think what Gillian says is right, a reduction in indebtedness


is part of the adjustment that has to be made. We have had problems


with Government indebtedness, but we also have a problem of personal


indebtedness. Until that happens I don't think consumers will feel


confident. So everyone is still borrowing too much? I think people


are still, by historic standards, quite heavily indebted, yes.


think it is the other way around. I think the Government's policy is


actually to make that graph move up again. That's what help to buy is


about. That is really what George Osborne did in the budget. He said


you can't cure debt with debt, but then the main thing he announced


was an eanother mus Government programme to guarantee and


subsidise -- another enormous Government programme to guarantee


and subsidise more debt. I believe we are beginning to see a recovery,


but it is of exactly the opposite kind to what has been described.


The very interesting thing is everyone watching this programme


tonight should ask themselves how do I feel about the future and


about my own finances? Does the idea of taking on more debt make me


feel terrified? Is it something I'm dipping my toe into the water, or


do I feel confident. That is really at the heart of whether we will


have a sustained recovery or not. So if they feel confident that's


good? And they take on the debt and then we are back? Back to where we


were before. Exactly. That's not very encouraging. Interestingly


enough, the reason the line has come down is it is primarily due to


increased income rather than households actually reducing their


net levels of debt. In America, by contrast, there has been a real


reduction in the actual level of debt held by households, that


hasn't happened yet in the UK. lot of that has been through


bankruptcy and foreclosures and things like that. There is an


election coming up. They have only got 18 months to generate a boom of


some kind in the economy. If it can't be an expert boom, it will be


a consumer and mortgage boom, that is where we are moving. Norman


Lamont, takes through your favourite recent graph. That hasn't


come up yet. It will come up I hope very shortly? My graph is of the


purchasing managers' index. This is of the whole economy, including


services and manufacturing. When it is above 50% that indicates that


people are expecting their order books, their business to increase


to do well. So in the past it has been a very good guide to the trend


of GDP. And here if you look at it, this is for the services sector,


which is the largest part of the economy, it would be even more


marked and show a big increase in optimisim. As I say that in the


past, historically has been closely co-related with the trend of the


economy. The amount of upbeatness you can see among people making


purchasing decisions, is that it? That's right. That indicates how


they feel the economy is going, is that the idea? It is an ago gaigs


of all the businesses in -- ago gregaigs of all the businesses in


the country, done by survey of what they expect to happen in their


businesses. Doesn't that confirm what Gillian was saying that there


is more confidence about? Yes, I do believe there is a basis for


thinking that we are about to see a bit of an upturn. I don't think it


will be very spectacular. I don't think it should be spectacular, a


gradual recovery is what we want rather than a fast recovery. There


are a lot of adjustments, the rebalancing Gillian referred to,


that need to be made in the economy. I think this ought to take time.


Could we call it green shoots do you think? We shouldn't confuse


green shoots with trees or buds or flowers like those behind you!


Green shoots are merely green shoots, the beginning of something.


We may be seeing some green shoots about now? It is possible, but I


think what history, can I just say this, I think what history


demonstrates is when you have had a big banking failure that sort of


recovery is much more prolonged and much more gradual and we should


expect it to be a little bit bumpy. Many years ago when I was a


journalist I learned to write the word "bank" in short hand, you go


down very sharply for a "b" and then a "n" and then a "k", we down


sharply and we bounced up a bit and then bounced on the bottom. That is


also presumably how you spell "bonk"? Or pink. The first thing


that happens is you start falling. You can see that from the chart.


What do you make of the graph? agree broadly with what people are


saying. We are starting to see the first green shoots. When I came to


see the pictures in the studio that is pushing up the daisies as well!


Are we pushing up the daisies. was my joke! I think you better


show us yours and then we can talk more generally. There it is.


spent spend my time travelling around the world now. I write for


an international audience for Reuters and the New York Times, I'm


also making comparisons between what is going on around the world.


The issue posed right at the beginning of the broadcast is if


the recovery is happening is it because of George Osborne's


ministrations or despite it. I think this chart, believe it or not,


demonstrates quite clearly the answer to that question and that is


that the recovery so far is very much despite George Osborne's


ministrations. Now it may be that the policies is about to change


drammatically, but what this chart shows is growth in the UK, the blue


line, and growth in the US, the Green Line. So the British economy


was stronger than the US economy going into the recession. They fell


almost exactly the same amount. They both had the same problems,


large financial sector, falling housing market, large levels of


Government debt. They both bounced back at the same time, through 2010


there is a marked divergence. The US economy continues to grow


between 2.5%, the UK falls back. That is because of the fiscal


tightening, the austerity policy, the higher taxes, the big cuts in


public pend spending which really began in my view and the IMF


confirms this from 2010 on wards. The gap between those lines is


about 2% of GDP. And just to give you an idea of what that


meaningless sort of statistic actually signifies, that's


equivalent to about half a million jobs. So the difference between the


performance of the two economies is roughly equivalent to half a


million jobs, I would say. I would broadly agree, I make two points,


America is now tightening fiscal policy, partly as a result of this


gridlock in Washington right now. At the right time. We did it too


early. Secondly, one reason why there is a difference in sentiment


between the US and the UK is America has had this cleansing


process of seeing a lot of defaults on the mortgages, a lot of the debt


repaid in the household sector, going back to the chart I started


with, which hasn't happened yet in the UK. This is he very interesting


it suggests some sort of recovery might have happened any way despite


George Osborne? I would make a couple of repoints in regards to


the graph. Firstly the financial sector, though large in both


economies, is much larger in relation to the total economy in


the UK than in the US. We have a bigger crater caused by the


collapse of the banks. Secondly, when you are comparing where we


were at the beginning of the crisis, with where we are now, I think in


one sense that is irrelevant. Because it all depends was the


growth that we had before the crisis real or was it in losery? In


my opinion a lot of the growth we had in 20067/07 was debt filled.


The fact that we are not back up where we were in 207 and America is


-- 2007, and America is back up, is just a reflection of how eluisery


it was before the crash. What sort of level will we be back to the


sort of period Norman Lamont is talking about in 2007? If the help


to buy George Osborne boom turns out to be real, then I would say


2015/16. I would roughly the same thing. I think about the same, but


compare it with Italy or Spain. Even if they grew at 1.5% peran


number, it wouldn't be before 2018/19 they were back to the level


they were. We are doing a lot better than some other people.


Great charts. It was basey old day for the riot


police in Istanbul, teargas, water canon and endless pushing and


shoving as they tried to clear Taksim Square. The scene of days of


protest against the Government of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Were we going


to kneel down in front of these people, he asked a meeting of MPs


today, he wasn't expecting the answer "yes". Nor were the


campaigners he calls "riffraff". He spoke to Jeremy Bowen earlier who


had just been hit by teargas. Can you talk us through what


happened today Jeremy? Well it has been a long day of clashes here,


they are going on as I speak. There is a lot of teargas in the air,


that is why I have got this. Just in the last few minutes I have seen


a water canon down there. More riot squads firing volleys of teargas


grenades, those are the bangs you can hear, towards the demonstrators


below there. There are still thousands of demonstrators in Gezi


Park, over my right shoulder. And here in Taksim Square there are


police, riot squads, water canon and all the paraphernalia of the


Turkish state. There will be a lot of Turk watching it on TV,


supporters of the Prime Minister saying good, these people are


getting what's coming to them. There is the other half of the


country with the protesters, this country is split. Wasn't he saying


until very, very recently that he would open talks with them? Yeah


there have been complaints about the people they were talking to


tomorrow are people hand picked by the AK Party. By the Prime


Minister's party as suitable people to negotiate with. A lot of people


here in Gezi Park have repudiated them as being not representative


and saying they are not going to be affected by anything that they do.


The thing is that ever since he returned from his North Africa tour


at the end of last week Mr Erdogan has been pretty much unremittingly


hostile in his rhetoric towards the protestors. Some people, some long


time observers of Turkish politics were hoping he might produce a U-


turn when he got back and reach out to elements of them and got a deal.


He wouldn't have won three elections here without being a


canny politician. He has taken a very hardline, used very tough


language, and of course in the last 12 hours or so he has sent in the


riot squads here. Right in the centre of Istanbul in this city's


equivalent of Travers square or Leicester Square. We are talking


about something localised with profound implication, how untable


is the situation? There is a risk if they don't find way out of this


that is in some sense consensual, there is a risk that parts of this


country might become, for a while, ungovernable. I think it is that


serious. There is a groundswell among half the population. Half the


population voted for the Prime Minister in the last elections,


there is a glound swell of people who are -- groundswell of people


who are fed up with his autocratic style. His supporters has said he


has presided over unprecedented growth in the Turkish economy. The


muscling up of their diplomatic clout across the Middle East. He is


turning Turkey back into a great power. Why are these people getting


in the way. These people would argue, and they are chanting again,


that they are shoulder-to-shoulder against fascism. That is one of the


great slogans they use they are, that is what they believe they are


fighting. Any word of what the army thinks? The army has been very


quiet. Don't forget Mr Erdogan has put large numbers of generals in


prison, because the army of course, which held political power in this


country for a long time and felt they were the guardians of the


secular state. The people who would move in if there was trouble going


on and who took part in a number of bloody military coups and military


Governments, they have been very much sent back to their barracks


under Mr Erdogan. He has used quite strong language. He has said that


the atmosphere reminds him of the period leading up to past military


coups. So he is in a sense raising that specter as if to say "don't


you dare"! Thank you very much, look after yourself.


Now by a margin of 36 -0, the Russian parliament voted this


afternoon to ban distribution of information about homosexuality to


children. The rules of the Douma are obviously a bit like those of


the philosophy department at Monty Python's Outback University where


everyone is called Bruce. The idea of banning what was coyly called of


the non-traditional sexual relations, is part of an attempt to


inoculate the country against the western liberals.


This is the lower house of the ru. Parliament the Douma. It isn't one


the Russian parliament, the Douma, it isn't one of the greatest


landmarks, yet it says so much about what is happening in Russia


today. It was a dramatic day in the Douma, much of it unfolded outside


the building. When I came down here earlier I witnessed clashes between


gay rights activists and anti-gay campaigners. The gay rights groups


were shouting things like "we should have the same right as


everyone else", their opponents responded with "Moscow is not


sodom" and calls on the police to beat up homosexuals. At one point


the violence spilled on to the main shopping street, with the gay


rights activists literally being hunted down and attacked. A few


hours later Russian parliament voted overwhelmingly in favour of a


controversial piece of legislation. It imposes heavy fines on anyone


who provides information to under- 18s about what is described as


"untraditional sexual relations". So what does all this tell us about


the direction in which Russia is moving? First of all it shows that


the Kremlin, which continues to dictate all policy here is growing


more conservative. Vladimir Putin may be the first


Russian lead in 300 years to announce he's getting a divorce. He


has made traditional family values, marriage, children and the church a


cornerstone of his third term in office. It is almost becoming the


state ideology in place of communism. And liberal values,


whether political, social or sexual have no room in this very


conservative outlook. This world view goes down very well with many


ordinary Russians. I witnessed an interesting conversation today


outside the parliament, an anti-gay activist was telling two gay rights


campaigners that people in Russia should never behave the way they do.


And if they wanted to be homosexuals they should clear off


and go and live in Europe. In fact, one opinion poll out today showed


that 88% of Russians supports the law on homosexuality, passed by the


parliament. And another recent survey showed that nearly half the


population believes that Russia's gay and lesbian community should


not enjoy the same rights as other citizens. Now these figures reflect


another key change in Russia. Russian society is growing more


intolerant of anyone who looks different, who thinks different,


who behaves different. That includes sexual minorities, ethnic


minorities and political minorities. While that trend continues Russia


will remain on a very different path from the west.


I'm joined by two guests in Moscow. A singer who was awarded the title


of Honoured Artist to Russia by President Putin, and her former


television presenter who outed himself on television. He was


subsequently sacked for doing so. This astonishing vote in the Douma,


463-0. Do you think that really reflects Russian opinion? I was


listening to the coverage of the issue, it was funny. It was funny


to me because it is nothing to do with politics. Being the mother of


three children I approve this bill because I want to defend my


children, first of all. Then I don't care, I don't want to meddle


with other people's lives. I don't care what they do behind their


doors. But they do care -- but I do care about my children's bringing


up. You know it is the situation not only me thinks like that. The


vast majority of people in Russia 88% of people support the ban of


homosexuality propaganda. That's a fact. And this bill


responds to people's demands. hear what you say.


Anton, tell us as a gay man, you came out on television. You lost


your job, you believe as a consequence. What else happened.


What is the feeling in your country? I'm glad that Valariea,


that situation is very funny for her, but it is not fun for me. I


think it is against me, against my family, against all gay people in


Russia. From today. No, no.Yes, yes. Hi. Good night. I have a lot


of fans who belong to the gay society it is not true. Can I.


Excuse me. From today I cannot say that I'm gay and I'm the same human


being like you, like President Putin, like all of you. Because


from today I will have to pay for this from �100-�2,000 because these


words could be taken as propaganda and she knows it, right? Just a


second, I don't understand your argument, you are saying just


because you are gay you are making propaganda for...Exactly. So you


are illegal, you feel? If I said that I am gay and I'm the same


human being, like you, for example, injure me, and it could be taken


like propaganda. That's outrageous? I foal the minority in my country,


believe me. I have a lot of friends who belong to the gay society, and


they do not support their uni sexual matters or would take part


in a gay parade, they are normal people. There is a lot of people


who belong to gay society still, they are still working on TV, in


the media and all over. I don't know why it happened to you? Anton,


come on? Are they open gays? Yeah, a lot of artists are openly gay.


please, tell me, who exactly is openly gay in the Russian media, in


the Russian pop business, in Russian showbiz, who is it? Sergie


Pankin. He's an open gay? Really? tell you what, we have world


renowned libel courts we will leave the naming of names. Nobody knows


who that is. Can you help us with this question Anton, first off,


what is it about your society and homosexuality? What do you mean


exactly. Why is it such an issue, this would not be an issue in


western Europe, for example, or the United States. What is it


particular to Russian society that makes it such a sensitive matter?


I'm not sure if it is a sensitive matter in Russia. I think it is a


sensitive matter for the Russian state. It is a big question, why? I


have no answer. Maybe Valeria knows. What I know is our society is based


on Christian morality, still. In spite of the "enlightened European


tendencies", a lot of people try to think the same way. We are


different the vast majority of people. It is interesting to hear


about Christians. Pardon me. Do you think it has much to do with the


communist history in your country Not at all. Let's put it like that,


the more aggressive propaganda of homosexuality, the less people feel


loyalty towards them. Towards the gay society. That's it. That's it.


It is very fun to hear about orthodox values from pop singer. It


is really fun. I just want to say one point. You talk about the


majority, about the majority wants it. I just want to remind you that


95% in Nazi Germany supported laws against Jews, homosexuals, and


gypsies, 95% of German people in 1935. Do remember what was in 1945,


right. Are you saying that you feel personally in danger as a


consequence of this legislation? Sure. I have three children, I have


the youngest son is 14 years old, I don't want him to be influenced by


anybody through the Internet mostly. Wow. You understand me.You are a


pop singer right? You have gay friends. Yes I am. They are normal


people. Uuraguay friends do you feel they make something like


propaganda to your 14-year-old son. Of course not. Yesterday I saw in


the news that one man was arrested for attempted sexual relations with


a 14-year-old boy, that should be punished. This case is criminal.


Presumably it is already punishable in your country isn't it? Child


abuse is not a crime in Russia? sure. Yes, of course it is.


OK all right. But it is nothing had had happened it was just an attempt.


It was a homosexual attempt it could influence... Thank you, thank


you. Good thank you very much indeed, thank you.


How odd were you? How old, sorry, how old were your children when


they left home? The average age is 24, unless you are in the care of


the state, which decrease it is entitled to end its commitment when


a young person reaches 16. Sometimes you might be able to


prolong your foster care until you are 18 and so avoid having to sit


your A-levels from some hostel. But a group of MPs were hoping today to


get parliament to agree that young people in foster care might be


supported until the age of 2. But the House of Commons speaker didn't


give them a chance -- 21. How the House of Commons speaker didn't


give them the chance. We filmed children in care a few years ago


and followed them now until they are 21 and asked if the raised age


would have made a difference to them. Four years ago Newsnight met


Phil Fuller, he had just turned 18. He was loving his new job as a


steward for the Leicester Tigers Rugby club. After seven years in


foster care he told our reporter that he felt ready to face the


world. My care experience has been all right. It's been good. Got the


best out of it. When you say you have the best out of it, what do


you mean? Everything I really wanted to. Get my confidence up and


self-esteem, go to groups and stuff. Keep myself busy and stuff. And now


you have your own flat? Yes.Now 21 Phil says that looking back he


wasn't ready to live alone and moving out of care was much harder


than he thought it would be. probably thought I was ready then


because I was immature and thought I can do it. My own property,


parties, you know, friends round whenever you want and stuff. But


now I just weren't ready, I didn't have some of the skills that I


needed to go into having my own place and stuff. I had to like ask


people to lend me a tenner here or a fiver here for paying the gas or


the electric or get some extra food stuffs in. You got into debt?Yeah,


I got into a bit of debt. average young people don't leave


home until they are 24. Yet children in care are expecting to


be ready to go out into the world at the age of 18. Campaigners say


that if they were supported for just a few more years fewer of them


would end up in trouble and more of them might well end up in higher


education. Last year 6,600 19-year-olds left


care. Of those just 5% are living with former foster families. But


under a 2008 pilot scheme, which funded foster care until aged 21,


23% chose to stay in their foster homes, a significant increase. The


cost of rolling this scheme out nationally would be around �2.6


million. Today several MPs called on the Government to raise the age


children leave foster care to 21. What difference have we made as


parents if children in our care end up on the streets or in jail or


with disabling mental health problems. Another generation doomed


to mirror the lives of their own parents. Why would we not let them


stay with their foster carers for those important extra three years.


The minister said he wants local authorities to prioritise helping


children to stay on in care. Or what's called "staying put". I have


written to all directors of childrens' services for staying put


arrangements and tax and benefit issues. But he didn't promise any


legislation or any more money. Without more cash it is hard to see


local Government prioritising it. The LGA has said that the


Government cannot place new financial expectations on councils


at a time when they are imposing drastic cuts.


In 2009 Caroline was a college student, studying performing arts.


She hoped to go on to university and to be a social worker.


Hopefully with my experience and then what I learn as well I can


make childrens' lives better. she has her hands full with three-


month-old Archie. After leaving foster care she moved in with hered


dad. She dreads to think what would have happened if he hadn't been


there. I was really immature, I would have gone down the route of


drinking, probably drugs. If you hadn't lived with your dad? If I


was out on the streets on my own or living in my own property, probably


would have gone down that route. you think that's, is that your


worry, do you think that is what is happening in a lot of places for a


lot of people do you think? Yeah. I think they have not got the family


support, the right friendship groups, they do go down the wrong


route. So I think up until they are 21 or, like I say, even later in


life. I think that the local authority should be there to


support them and give them that family background, that family


support that they do need. Phil is now working for an education


charity and he's mentoring children. He thinks young people would get on


better in life if they were cared for well into their 20s.


I think they should extend the period so young people are in care


to stay with their foster parents or gain extra skills. I wouldn't


say 21 I would say 24, 25, like a normal young person with their


biological parents. Normally they do stay up to 25, 28. So it just


keeps us all on a level playing field. The campaign to raise the


age for leaving foster care to 21 has stalled, because for now it is


hard to see where the money will come from.


Scientists in Singapore are said to have discovered the thing that


every child desires, as HG Wells heros discovered, invisibility


makes it possible to achieve all things people desire. Even if it


makes impossible to enjoy them. It doesn't stop it being a dream.


Indeed if these scientists are to be believed, it may not remain a


dream indefinitely. Is it possible invisibility might really be


achievable? Professor Chris Philips from Imperial College believes so,


and he can explain why. Do you think it is impossible? No it is


happening already. Let as look at these photographs we have got. I


don't know if it is a cat or cold fish, both have been made to be


invisible and not before time. Many would feel. Let's see if we can


look at the pictures. No we can't. Yes we can. That is the goldfish.


There it is. There is the cat. It does disappear, how is it happening


there? If you are a cat and you want to disappear. You go under the


bed?. That is hiding, if you put a bag over your head people know you


are there. If you want to be ins haveable you have to arrange for


the light behind you, hide yourself and arrange for the image behind


you to come around you and to be brought back together just as if


you weren't there. That is what that device does. It is a kind of.


You could see it was a plate or something inside the goldfish tank?


I think it is a set of crystals. What is actually happening?


means the background image is being guided around the cat and brought


back together. If the cat sits in the middle of the device it


disappears and vanishs. Why is that useful or worth scientific


research? It is an example, you notes these stories are come --


knows these stories crumbing through more and more, of people's


quest to control light, the bending of light. Why is that useful?We


had an example early on when Jeremy was there with his live pictures


from Turkey. Those pictures were actually being turned into tiny


little flashes of light and sent to us down a cable of optic fibre. At


every point in those optic fibres and the Internet you want it make


circuits out of light. You know instead of making circuits out of


electronics, you would like to send thes of light around, this research


that yields the cloaks is driven by the quest to control light inside


the optic circuits. You used the word "cloak", talking the language


of Harry Potter. It didn't look like a cloak, it looked like a


plate of some kind. Are we talking about something feesably as


effective as a piece of clothing? That thing doesn't have to be


flexible, if you can't be seen that is the idea of the cloak. There are


other ways of vanishing, you can do something called adaptive


camouflage, where you have cameras that are connected to electronics


in your coach, and you have a coat that is a flexible TV screen. That


would show the picture behind you, if you get it all right it would


look like you have vanished. As far as the invisibility cloak of the


other kind, the light-bending cloak? We call that a cloak, yes.


How far off are scientists from App Developersing or discovering such a


thing and other people developing it? It has been demonstrated in


radio waves, it is easier to make the wavelengths that we can't see.


There is a man called John Pendry at Imperial College, he was the


first to develop the idea. The first demonstration was with radio


wave, it would hide something from ray door. To make one that hides


things at light frequencies is harder but an engineering problem


and it will get there in the next 20 years or so. Thank you very much.


There you are, hoisted with your on It is the moment for us all to be


invisible, not before time you may agree. We will materialise again


tomorrow. Good night. Much warmer night


tonight compared to last night. A humid feel on Wednesday. But quite


a lot of cloud again. We will see sunshine developing, sunny spells


through central and eastern Scotland, eastern England also


brightening up. Further south a lot of cloud and outbreaks of rain.


Sunny spells across Northern Ireland. Clouding over here once


more. Probably a wet start for northern Scotland. It looks dryer


by the afternoon. Sunny spells for most of the day through the central


belt. Cloud returning bringing rain here during the evening. Mostly


grey across North West of England. We could hit 20 with a little


sunshine. For the bulk of England and Wales, temperatures will be in


the mid-teens, and rain will return to many southern areas, it looks


like during the day. Turning increasingly windy, the wind


picking up across South Wales and south-west England. Especially


during Wednesday night into Thursday. Thursday looks like being


a fairly blustery day. There will be some sunny spells. Interest will


be bands of showery rain, particularly across the northern


half of the UK. Further south there will be a few showers around, we


should see a little more in the way of sunshine here on Thursday.


Slightly fresher feel however, temperatures being down, it won't


The green shoots of economic recovery; the Turks attack their protesters; Russia's treatment of gays and the science of invisibility. With Jeremy Paxman.

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