25/04/2014 Newsnight


25/04/2014

Emily Maitlis discusses antidisestablishmentarianism (splitting church and state), Pakistan, Damon Albarn says Oasis were better and Helen Mirren plays Cleopatra.


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Iran, the Vatican and England, members of the elite club where the

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head of faith is also head of state. ??FORCEDWHI Could it be time to end

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all this? The deputy PM thinks so, the church doesn't. Look what we

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have in France, fanatical sec collateralism. In America, fanatical

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fundamentalism. Because we have the Church of England as the established

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church we, on the whole, have a rational, sensible approach to

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religion. We will be asking these two in that's right. Will Damon

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Albarn finally concede oasis were better than Blair. That is not a

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very grown-up question for Newsnight is it? I think Obeysies were better.

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-- obeysies were better. Doing God, as David Cameron proved

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in his Easter message can still spark a strong reaction of how about

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not doing God. The proposal from his deputy is separate church and state.

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Nick Clegg is a modern day Henry VII taking things a step too far. This

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is Terry untouched for 500 years since the age of the English

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reformation. Today our deputy leader questioned why is the head of state

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the head of faith. It leaves us in a club of three, the Vatican and Iran

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are strange bed fellows. Should the link be dissolved and would the link

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be lost if it was. There is very little that is more evocative of

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Englishness than a grand Anglican Church. But is it time for the

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Church of England to turn a little Welsh. 100 years ago this year Wales

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disestablished its national church, the church in Wales became a

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stand-alone body, the Queen isn't its head. Nick Clegg thinks the

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Church of England should follow suit. My personal view is in the

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long run having the state and the church basically bound up with each

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other, as we do in this country I think in the long run it would be

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better for the church and better for people of faith and better for

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Anglicans if the church and the state were, over time, to sort of

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stand on their own two, separate feet so to speak. You can say what

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you like about the Liberal Democrats, at least they are

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consistent, back then it was the question of liberty and state, these

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days it is more about whether or not the Anglican Church is still

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relevant. The last census saw a marked decline in people who saw

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themselves as Christian, and a rise in the number of people who declared

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no faith. Furthermore the last church census, which took place in

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2005 found that Anglicans had the same market share among active

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church goers as Catholics, they were no longer the biggest church, and

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Polish immigration in recent years means that Catholics are now almost

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certainly larger. Disestablishment would mean the 26 bishops who sit in

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the House of Lords, the so called Lords Spiritual, would lose their

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seats. The Queen would cease to be the head of the church, and the

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church might lose assets given to it by the state. But the argument about

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establishment goes to the heart of the question of what the church is

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for? I think it is important to realise the Church of England

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believes in establishment if it does not for its own ends, the church has

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lived and could live with disestablishment or anything. The

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church in Wales is disestablished and perked up. So long as the

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country as a whole feels it does in some way serve the common good both

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locally and nationally I think there is a strong case for the continuing

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establishment. But some people question whether the church is

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serving enough of the country to justify staying established. Before

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anybody had a right to get married, if they hadn't been married before

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in a Church of England church, and that is no longer the case, because

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of the gay marriage situation. Gay people can now get married in the

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eyes of the state, but they are excluded from church marriages. So

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now for the first time the church is no longer a church for the nation,

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so I think they have made a mistake over gay marriage. That has

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strengthened the case for disestablishment. Still this

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argument is likely to remain an academic one for some time to come.

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That's because, even though British people are a pretty irreligious lot,

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they do actually really quite like Christianity. And an international

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poll show that Britons have a much more positive view of Christians

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than other countries with similar levels of religious observance, it

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is rather close to the US, where around three-times as many people

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report religion playing a very important role in their life. One of

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the reasons disestablishment of the Church of England hasn't happened is

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it would take months and months of parliamentary time. You couldn't

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just do it overnight. In effect what we already have is a kind of

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creeping disestablishment. Gradually links are getting looser and looser

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in many respects, for example, over the appointment of bishops, the

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Prime Minister's role in that is much less than it was in the past.

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So, that century-old liberal party commitment will remain unfulfilled,

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however the marriage between state and church will shift and change,

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and perhaps one day we may wake up and realise the Monarch is the only

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thing that the Channel Tunnel and state have in common. Giles Fraser

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is a priest at St Mary's in Newington, and former canon of St

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Pauls, and we have the Speaker's chaplain to the House of Commons and

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chaplain to the Queen. Thank you very much both of you for coming in.

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The point made there Rose, is the church isn't serving enough of the

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country to really make this argument valid any more? That is a spurious

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argument, really, in particular seemed to be centered around the

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whole issue of gay marriage. Because the church isn't conducting gay

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marriages then it is not serving the rest of people. Just the numbers put

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there? The numbers in terms of the percentages of people. Two thirds of

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Christians aren't even Anglicans any more, you saw the growing numbers

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are those of no faith, not Christian faith? Do you know the reality, I'm

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not so sure about that. The reality is that in inner city areas, in

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rural areas, when the pub closes its doors, when the school closes its

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doors, when the supermarkets or the post offices are gone, the Church of

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England is the one institution that is still there and serving all the

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people in that community. Willing and open for everyone. That's

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brilliant but you don't need to have establishment in order to do T the

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problem with establishment is not that I think it is bad for the

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country, I think it might be good for the country. I think it is bad

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for the church. I think it is bad for the church, for us to be so

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close to the establishment. We cosy up to the establishment and it

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blunts our message. I think we are not free to be the church because we

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are too close to the powers that be and we quite like being too close to

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the powers that be. What would the church look like without that link?

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The church would be much freer, more like it is in the United States, it

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may grow and have more political influence, but it doesn't need to be

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there. I want it to be more political, I don't want the

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political links to be established links. I think the church is

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strangely less political. If I said to Rose, as her job as speaker, is

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there any MP whose political views you would publicly condemn? I

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actually think you probably couldn't do it? I'm not so sure about that.

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Come on, you know Rose, you know what it is like? I would not, as

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someone in a Pastoral role with others, I may not publicly out there

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condemn them, but I would certainly be willing to speak to them about

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their behaviour or whatever. This is the problem, publicly we're not

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publicly being able to speak out Protestant fetically because we have

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this d prophetically in this role. If you have listened to the same

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bishops in the House of Lords, or the charge bishops, they have spoken

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out recently. They are the ones who are leading the discussions with

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regards to welfare reform, with regards to the scandal. Anyone could

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be doing that, a rabbi could be doing it, an Iman could be doing it?

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But they are the one that is are doing it. Don't you concede it is an

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enormous privilege and power given to Anglican, a diminishing quantity

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in this country, in the parliamentary system, that cannot be

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right? I think, I feel that we are obsessed about this. And certainly

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listening to what Nick Clegg said about it, for me faith ask not

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something in a box separate from politics or separate from something

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else. It is who I am. And so what we need to be doing is to enable

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peoples, those who are of faith to actually express who they are as

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people of faith in whatever walks of life they find themselves. Are we

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really free, I want the Channel Tunnel to play a greater role in the

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public sphere, I want it out and proud about what it thinks. Can we

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really be that when our bishops are appointed through processes from

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Downing Street, and state has this enormously role in choosing the

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Archbishop of Canterbury, actually we are compromises by our complicity

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and closeness with the state. That is not entirely true. Can I ask you

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to look at it from the perspective of the state, do you worry without

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that, if the link is broken it won't be replaced with another link and

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another faith, wouldn't the state lose its spiritual dimension? I

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don't know what that means, the heart of the Church of England is

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not... You don't think it offers morality, you don't think it guides

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the state? No, that comes through the democratic state and the voters

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and the House of Commons. The Church of England is at its core is in the

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parishes, and what Rose talks about fact we are out there in every

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community in the land. That is absolutely the crucial work we do.

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It is not about what we do whispering people inner mine Ermine

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in the House of Lords. What about the church withdrawing from public

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life? It would free us up to participate more? This establishment

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would present an image of the church in retreat. Right now the church as

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an established church represents the ability to be in the prison, in the

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chaplain. It sounds like you are worried about the perception of

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retreat? No, it is more than a perception. The work that the church

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does in prisons, in hospitals, in schools. We can still do that, they

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do it in Wales, they They do that everywhere. Having an established

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church here sends a message to other faiths that you are free to be who

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you are. What you represent as a person of faith is welcome. Do you

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accept that, that it does encourage people of different faiths to be

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able to feel freer to express that? Some people think, that the former

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Chief Rabbi used to think that, a lot of people don't feel that. Many

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people of other faiths don't have a problem with this? You hold the

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ring. My argument is not a problem, I'm not arguing from other faiths,

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I'm saying that the church of the establishment prefers dressing-up to

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speaking out and that is the problem. I don't know about that, I

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think that the church still has a prophetic role, and I think this is

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a secularist agenda. I don't see people in my parish in Hackney, this

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is not on their lips. This establishment is not a priority. Let

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me ask you, this was brought up as a concept very typically by the Prime

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Minister at Easter, do you feel physically used by politicians going

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on about the church, possibly for a very sort of voter-specific reason?

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Each person will have to answer for themselves whether they are standing

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up front and saying I'm a person of faith and I think Britain is a

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religious country, if they are doing it genuinely or if they are doing it

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because they want to make a political show. But I believe that

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Britain is a Christian country. And you believe it will stay like that?

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You nodded when we were talking about parliamentary time? It was

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right in the package at the beginning, is you won't unravel this

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cat's cradle, no-one will give it the parliamentary time. I would like

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that to happen, I like Thomas Jefferson's wisdom about the

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separation of church and state would be a good one to bring back here.

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That won't happen. There is much more priority for the nation than

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that. Agreed. Thank you both very much indeed. Coming up Helen Mirren

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as Shakespeare's Cleopatra. I think there was or might be such a man as

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this? A 72-year-old British grandfather has become the latest

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victim of Pakistan's notorious blasphemy law, after reading some

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verses from the Koran, he was jailed for posing to be a Muslim and locked

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up for 65 days. He has now fled bail and is staying with his children in

:14:32.:14:45.

Glasgow. We went to speak to him. I was thinking I haven't done

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anything, why have you taken me? They said we know what to do with

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you, we will beat you so much you will never forget ever. He's safe

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for now, in November he was arrested and persecuted in Pakistan for his

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religious beliefs. He's escaped to Britain and is now living in

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Glasgow, but even here he's not accepted by many Muslims. He was

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jailed in Pakistan for reading a verse from the Koran. His crime was

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posing to be a Muslim and violating the country's infamous blasphemy

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laws. These are the circumstances when I came to London, I started my

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education. And I studied in the 1960s and 1970s. He's part of the

:15:28.:15:34.

community, a religious sect deemed non-Muslim by the Pakistani

:15:35.:15:37.

Government. Educated in Britain, he worked as a homeopath in Lahore for

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many years. He was tricked publicly into expressing his beliefs by a

:15:45.:15:48.

young man posing as a patient. He asked me some medical advice, I

:15:49.:15:51.

wrote whatever was needed and after that he pushed me into the religious

:15:52.:15:56.

questions. I took the Koran out and said let's see what the Koran says?

:15:57.:16:04.

I just quoted a little bit and translated into Urdu, and then the

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police came in. And they grabbed me from the neck and took me straight

:16:09.:16:13.

to the police station. I never knew what happened. This secret recording

:16:14.:16:19.

could have him jailed for up to three years. Members of the

:16:20.:16:24.

community are considered outside the fold of Muslim by many Muslims

:16:25.:16:28.

because of their belief in a subservient prophet after Mohammed.

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He believes he was targeted. It was planned many months ago. It wasn't

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an all of a sudden. Because there was a black mark on my car and a

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black mark on my shop, and at that time I thought they are going to do

:16:44.:16:50.

something. And they did. To avoid reprisals from other prisoners,

:16:51.:16:54.

those arrested on blasphemy charges are locked up together. Masood spent

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65 years in jail together with two other members of the secretary while

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on remand. It was a small cell, and there was a toilet everything within

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it. We had to sleep on the floor, we had our own blankets. When you are

:17:17.:17:20.

mentally strong you can bear anything. What is every day life in

:17:21.:17:28.

Pakistan like for your group? After 1984 after the constitution, every

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one of us is in danger, even when walking in the street you can be

:17:35.:17:38.

prosecuted and sent to prison, even if he looks like a Muslim. Any of us

:17:39.:17:43.

can be sent to prison, can be murdered at any time, and nobody

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will ask why did you do that? Because he's a second class, or

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rather third class citizens. Masood's family in Glasgow is now

:17:57.:18:01.

taking care of him, including his 20-year-old daughter, she's angry

:18:02.:18:07.

but puts her faith in God that those behind this will be punished. They

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will pay for this, because they are doing bad to people who have done

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nothing to them. They do so many things to us, but we have never said

:18:14.:18:24.

one word of hatred to them. Love for all. So whether a Mullah or anyone

:18:25.:18:30.

else, we don't hate them. She didn't know how tough I am, that is the

:18:31.:18:36.

reason, she was worried! She's my favourite granddaughter. After

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suffering rejection and persecution at the hands of Pakistan Masood

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doesn't hope to return to his homeland. I have a freedom here, I

:18:56.:18:59.

love my country but I can't go back, if I go back I will be in prison or

:19:00.:19:04.

murdered. I have no choice, except to live in Britain, and enjoy the

:19:05.:19:20.

freedom. New mortgage rules come into force at midnight aimed at

:19:21.:19:25.

ensuring borrowers are not offered loans they can't afford. Borrowers

:19:26.:19:31.

are warned to expect more scrutiny and rejection. It is aimed to

:19:32.:19:36.

clamp-down on boom time lending. Will it make it harder to borrow?

:19:37.:19:40.

What is crucial is some members have been doing this for years already,

:19:41.:19:43.

but from tomorrow they will be required to do it, if they don't

:19:44.:19:46.

show they are doing it, they will get in trouble with the regulator.

:19:47.:19:50.

What is that experience of them asking you about your grocery bill,

:19:51.:19:56.

your gas bill, what you spend on grooming, how does that constrain

:19:57.:20:03.

lending? If you look at how much people are borrowing, far from

:20:04.:20:07.

borrowing less, it has allowed us to borrow more. Under the 1980s you

:20:08.:20:11.

could borrow two-and-a-half times your joint income, if you had a

:20:12.:20:16.

couple with a joint income of ?150,000, lucky them, they could

:20:17.:20:21.

borrow ?375,000, under the new system I have quotes, and Halifax

:20:22.:20:27.

will lend you ?675,000, four-times your income, Skipton ?750,000,

:20:28.:20:33.

five-times your income, and a higher amount, Newcastle will lend you

:20:34.:20:38.

?862, five-and-a-half times your income. Finding out what you spend

:20:39.:20:43.

on hair and gas means they may lend you more. Will it be harder for a

:20:44.:20:49.

first time buyer to stretch to buy the best property? What people did

:20:50.:20:54.

in the past is if they couldn't afford the monthly payment they

:20:55.:20:57.

would like an interest-only mortgage. Now they are stretching

:20:58.:21:01.

the mortgage over a longer term, that can really cut your payments.

:21:02.:21:06.

In the past over 25 years, borrowing ?500,000, you would pay ?2,900, if

:21:07.:21:12.

you stretch it out to 35 years you can cut the monthly payment to

:21:13.:21:16.

?2,500. It can make you cheaper but the mortgages are getting longer and

:21:17.:21:19.

longer and stretching into retirement, you might pay until you

:21:20.:21:25.

are 75. If you take first time buyers versus buy-to-let, different

:21:26.:21:28.

treatment for them? Completely different, if you are buying for

:21:29.:21:31.

your own home it is a regulated mortgage. If it is a buy-to-let

:21:32.:21:35.

mortgage it is not regulated, they don't need to know about your gas

:21:36.:21:38.

bill or grooming. It means for the same monthly payment they can borrow

:21:39.:21:43.

more, and buy-to-let investors can compete better for the houses on the

:21:44.:21:49.

market. The summer of 1994 was the summer Britpop ruled the waves,

:21:50.:21:55.

Blur's Parklife came out 20 years ago today. Oasis's Definitely Maybe

:21:56.:22:02.

was on the way. The music was arrogant, cheeky, and anthemic, it

:22:03.:22:06.

suggested a country beginning to feel at ease with itself once again.

:22:07.:22:10.

20 years on we went to meet unwith of the artists that inspired a

:22:11.:22:15.

generation. The Blur front man, Damon Albarn. Can you remember what

:22:16.:22:26.

you were doing at the height of Britpop, perhaps you were running

:22:27.:22:32.

the country. Bandses like Damon Albarn's Blur, furnished the

:22:33.:22:37.

soundtrack to the early Blair years, Cool Britannia and all that.

:22:38.:22:44.

# What is known as parklife. Today is a red letter day, 20 years since

:22:45.:22:49.

Parklife came out, we have producers on Newsnight younger than that. Are

:22:50.:22:54.

you feeling nostalgic, how do you look back on that record in that

:22:55.:23:01.

time? I'm not feeling nostalgic, I'm very much in the present. That was

:23:02.:23:08.

an extraordinary year for me and it changed my life. It was great shock

:23:09.:23:19.

to the system, I think you talk to anyone who has that meteoric rise,

:23:20.:23:26.

it takes a while to come out of that the other side, you know. But what

:23:27.:23:36.

is being billed as his first solo record, Albarn has been revisiting

:23:37.:23:41.

his roots in East London and Essex. He's also been reflecting on other

:23:42.:23:47.

phases in his life, one nomic reference to heroin has been

:23:48.:23:52.

generating column inches. My experience was a long time ago. I

:23:53.:24:01.

wrote about it in one song which is You and Me, it is in context, the

:24:02.:24:11.

context is it is a song about the ghosts of Notting Hill Carnival,

:24:12.:24:16.

which I live on one of the Main Streets where the prosession goes

:24:17.:24:20.

through. And it is incredible. You get the three brilliant days where

:24:21.:24:25.

two million people pass through this neighbourhood and then silence,

:24:26.:24:28.

everything overnight disappears, but there is this energy and these

:24:29.:24:32.

ghosts are still there, and the whole song is about ghosts. It is

:24:33.:24:42.

one of my ghosts. I personally don't have an addictive personality, I

:24:43.:24:45.

mean, I can have a cigarette and then not have a cigarette for five

:24:46.:24:49.

days and then have another one. I'm very lucky like that. I have not for

:24:50.:25:05.

one secondam Making the -- am Making up the he pretence that everyone is

:25:06.:25:10.

like me. This idea of me being a liberty teen in best London

:25:11.:25:14.

celebrating drug taking couldn't be further from that.

:25:15.:25:23.

# We are every day robots # In the process of getting home

:25:24.:25:37.

Albarn's new material is autobiograical. Instead of breathing

:25:38.:25:42.

life into his animated groan Gorillaz, or channelling Elizabethan

:25:43.:25:49.

mystic Dr Dee. He's now assumed the role of baffled dad, wondering at

:25:50.:25:57.

the younger generation and their gadgets. You have a

:25:58.:26:00.

14-and-a-half-year-old daughter and their relationship with social media

:26:01.:26:09.

is in a way alien to me, I know they look at us and think that we are the

:26:10.:26:20.

ones that are in need of some form of evolution. Now some Britpop for

:26:21.:26:30.

the teenagers, a tune which Ken Dodd no less took to the charts in 1960.

:26:31.:26:42.

# Love is like a violin # Da-da-da-da. Newsnight can reveal

:26:43.:26:47.

Albarn is tinkering with a project about the Music Halls. One big

:26:48.:26:55.

question remains. Our editor would like to know who you think was

:26:56.:27:02.

better, you lot or Oasis! That's not a very grown-up question for

:27:03.:27:07.

Newsnight is it. I will pass that on.

:27:08.:27:15.

# I'm feeling supersonic I think Oasis were better. I think

:27:16.:27:23.

they were better at communicating who they were than we were. We will

:27:24.:27:35.

ask Noel Gallagher the same question. Just the papers before we

:27:36.:27:40.

go. The Times has the mortgage story. Baby George on his way home.

:27:41.:27:45.

The Treasury Minister's battle to scrap HS two is an interesting one

:27:46.:27:52.

for the Telegraph. Warnings that the ?50 billion scheme of HS two, the

:27:53.:27:57.

high-speed rail link does not represent value for tax-payers'

:27:58.:28:00.

money. She is of course David Cameron's new Treasury Minister, who

:28:01.:28:04.

is now wanting a dramatic re-think on the whole project. In the

:28:05.:28:09.

Guardian they have a picture Nigel Farage and it says no MPs only one

:28:10.:28:13.

policy. So had a where has Farrage got them rattled.

:28:14.:28:36.

That's almost it, as part of our celebration of the birthday of

:28:37.:28:43.

Shakespeare, Tom Hollander formed his favourite speech from Richard II

:28:44.:28:51.

I, tonight Helen Mirren from act five scene two from Cleopatra. I

:28:52.:28:56.

dreamed there was an Emperor Anthony, oh, such another sleep,

:28:57.:29:04.

that I might see but such another man. His face was as the heavens,

:29:05.:29:11.

and there in stuck a sumant moon that kept their course and lighted

:29:12.:29:19.

the little "o" the earth. His legs bestrid the ocean, his reared arm

:29:20.:29:29.

crested the world. His voice was as all the tune'd spheres and that to

:29:30.:29:33.

friends but when he went to shake and quail the orb he was as rattling

:29:34.:29:40.

thunder! For his pointy there was no winter in it and autumn it was that

:29:41.:29:48.

grew the more by reaping his delights would often like. They

:29:49.:29:52.

showed his back above the element they lived in. In his lids realms

:29:53.:30:04.

and islands were as plate, dropped from his pocket. Think you there was

:30:05.:30:32.

or might be such a man as this? Hello there, many places tomorrow

:30:33.:30:36.

will start off cloudy and wet, but an improving picture throughout the

:30:37.:30:39.

day, an area of low pressure down to the

:30:40.:30:40.

Antidisestablishmentarianism (that's splitting church and state), Pakistan, Damon Albarn says Oasis were better and Helen Mirren plays Cleopatra.


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