27/08/2014 Newsnight


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

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The man in charge of children's welfare in Rotherham faces calls for


him to quit. Are we all in denial of how many young people are brutally


exploited for sex in other towns too. We knew that she had absconded


before and she was having relationships with older men who


threatened violence. We knew all this and for seven days we did


nothing. This is unbelievably ?3,000 worth of drugs that I take every


morning. Has the Government had enough of paying for those expensive


drugs. Newsnight learns some pricey medicines could be axed. Does


America's right to bear arms include nine-year-olds. We speak to someone


who believes it does. Ever feel lost and unconnected? In a broadband


wilderness. The wireless revolution is just beginning, so TV white space


is giving us more spectrum and more availability to communicate. Good


evening, stubborn doesn't really begin to cover it. The man who was


in charge of Children's Services in Rotherham while warnings of abuse


were ignored refuses to leave his current post. That's despite the


Home Secretary and his own party, Labour, calling on him to go. It


says now they will suspend him if he hasn't gone by the morning. But


tonight Shaun Wright is still responsible for


tonight Shaun Wright is still Yorkshire. Whatever his future, or


those of other Yorkshire. Whatever his future, or


politicians still in senior positions elsewhere, the more


politicians still in senior similar abuse may still be happening


to other children. From Rotherham here is Jim Reed.


Shaun Wright out! ! And still he won't go, everyone from the English


Defence League to the Home Secretary was calling for his resignation


today. But the man in charge of Children's Services for much of the


last decade is tonight refusing to quit. I'm not resigning as South


Yorkshire Police commissioner because I'm proud... REPORTER: How


can people have confidence you in you? People can have confidence if


you allow me to answer the question, because I can evidence all the


actions I have taken since I came into this office. It is the scale I


have a Bews in Rotherham that has shocked this town. 1400 girls over


16 years. Children as young as 11, raped, traffiked, beaten and


intimidated. Newsnight has spoken to one man, who until recently worked


in a child protection role, covering parts of Rotherham. They are without


doubt, without any shadow of a doubt the most vulnerable people we have


got in society. When they came forward to contact the authorities,


whether it is the police or local council, with Tories of sexual abuse


or evidence of sexual abuse, how seriously were the stories taken?


There was almost a resigned acceptance that these were the kind


of issues that were inevitable, given the background, given the


individual circumstances and the personalities of the children


involved. But yesterday's report was not the first the authorities had


heard about street grooming. Three separate reports dating back over


ten years had already highlighted the problem to council officials and


the police. In 2003 a drug analyst wrote a report for the council about


substance abuse, it describes a significant number of girls and some


boys who were being sexually exploited. Including the case of a


young girl dowsed in petrol as a thread if she went to the police.


Three years later a second report from the doctor this time talking


about an established sexual exploitation scene which was very


organised and involved systematic physical and sexual violence. I had


a child who had been missing, a 14-year-old girl, she had been


missing for seven days, we knew that she was at risk of sexual


exploitation, that was a given, and we knew that she had absconded


before and that she was having relationships with older men who had


threatened violence, we knew all this and for seven days we did


nothing. But perhaps the most serious example came earlier in


2001, a young Home Office researcher was told to write a profile of sex


offenders in Rotherham. This week's independent report talk about how


that researcher spoke to young women in the town. She described mounting


frustration at the lack of action by the authorities. One girl had tried


to escape from the gang abusing her, the researcher took her to the


police station, where she was too scared to give evidence saying


simply "you can't protect me", that researcher with permission from her


manager wrote two letters to senior figures in the police force, she was


called in for a meeting and simply told never to do this again. The


contents of the letters were never discussed. When senior council


officials and police officers saw a draft of that report the researcher


was immediately suspended for gross misconduct. From that point on she


was not allowed to contact any of the girls involved and funding for


the project was simply stopped before it could be completed. The


leader of Rotherham council quit this week as a result of the


scandal, saying he takes responsibility for what has


happened. But no other head has rolled and no police or council


officer has been disciplined. So the spotlight has fallen on one of the


most visible of those in charge, police and crime commissioners


cannot be sacked only voted out by the electorate. But Labour have


raised the stakes this evening saying they will suspend Shaun


Wright's membership of the party if he hasn't resigned by the morning.


When the report says the information was there and action should have


been taken, when leadership fails it is important people take


responsibility. This evening Shaun Wright is thought to be at home


consulting with his family about his future. That future looks


increasingly uncertain. In a moment we will speak to Amjad


Bashir, the UKIP MEP for Yorkshire and Sheila Taylor of the NWG charity


which advises professionals on working on child sexual


exploitation. With us first of all is Jack Dromey the Labour shadow


minister for policing. Thank you for being with us. As things stand


tonight Shaun Wright is still a member of your party. Your calls for


him to go have failed. You are pretty powerless aren't you? He


should resign, he had are the power to act but he did not use that power


to defend the powerless, he needs, therefore, to accept responsibility.


If he does not resign then he will be suspended tomorrow morning. But


for people watching this in Rotherham, being thrown out,


temporarily from a political party, it is not exactly tough action on


him is it? We in the Labour Party will act, but the problem about the


legislation that was introduced by Theresa May, there is no mechanism


to force him to stand down. Now that does raise questions for the future.


But in the here and now we are absolutely clear he has to accept


responsibility for his abject failure to defend those who were


being abused by evil men. And we will come on to that in a more


detail in a second. In future, if you were in Government, would you


change the rules to make Police Commissioners a new role more


accountable. In just this circumstance they could be gotten


rid of if appropriate? What is clear beyond any doubt is the current


arrangements don't make any sense. I think there will be complete dismay


in south Yorkshire, he has lost the confidence of the people of south


Yorkshire, above all he has lost the confidence of the victim. Would you


change the rules? Necessarily so. Isn't he, however, a proxy in a


sense of a problem that was clearly admitted today by one of your former


colleagues, Dennis McShane, the MP for Rotherham for many years. He


told the BBC that when he was working in the town he didn't want


to rock the multicultural boat too hard. He said as a true Guardian


leader and liberal lefty he didn't want to raise it too hard? It is


important to stress that the great majority of men who abuse children


are actually white, having said that, were there particular problems


in Rotherham? Yes there were. And it cannot be right that you ever allow


the fact that there is an ethnic grouping, an ethnic identity to the


nature of some of that abuse, not all of it, it cannot get in the way


of proper investigation, defending the powerless and calling those


responsible to account. But what is important here is that a formerly


prominent Labour politician is fessing up and saying we had a


problem in the Labour Party, we turned a blind eye because we didn't


want to rock the boat. Do you accept that? Lessons need to be learned of


the past. Of that there is no doubt. After the immediate, which is Shaun


needing to resign, crucially support for the victims and bringing the


perpetrators before the courts. There has been an announcement for


Take That that -- that, we pressed for that at the time, that all those


with responsibility have a duty to react. Lessons to be learned may be


overused in these circumstances. Can you be confident that the problem


identified today by your colleagues that looking the other way to


protect multiculturalism has disappeared in the Labour Party? We


should never allow multiculturalism or any other factor to get in the


way of the investigation of wrongdoing. Has it changed? We need


to learn lessons from the past because the idea that this is a


problem of the past, it is an on going problem, on a massive scale of


the abuse by men of children. Amjad Bashir, you are the MEP from the


area and you are Pakistani in origin, we have just lost him, we


will hope to come back to him shortly. Let's put this to you, this


specific problem in the Pakistani community in this one town is much


discussed, do you accept that this was in some sense a racial crime? I


think there may be elements of racial crime in there, but to me


anybody who thinks it is OK to have sex with children within our society


is committing an offence. We need to focus on the criminal activity,


there is an awful lot of focus on the victims and actually we're not


looking at how we are going to tackle the perpetrators within our


society. Is this picture painted so eloquently by Professor Jay in her


report yesterday of this specific problem in the Pakistani community,


is that familiar to you? It is familiar to me, but it is not the


only model that we see. We see lots and lots of ways that sexual


exploitation manifests itself within society. And there is a very


specific media focus on the Pakistani Muslim community. That


doesn't mean to say there isn't an issue there that needs tackling. But


there is at the same time we can't let that be the only thing we


tackle. Amjad Bashir I hope can hear us from Leeds now, thank you for


joining us. You are Pakistani in origin, but a proud Yorkshireman to


boot, do you acknowledge and your community acknowledge the extent of


this problem? I think the community does acknowledge that there is a


problem. 1400 young, vulnerable girls, over 16 years have been


exploited, largely by Asian men. It is not acceptable. The community has


to come forward and accept this and try and make sure this is prevented


in the future. I have just come away from a meeting with the religious


leaders who have all condemned this. I think there is a problem out there


and we have to admit there is a problem and prevent it from ever


happening again. And do you think that turning a blind eye and that


this sensitivity around ethnicity essentially let people off the hook


in Rotherham? I do believe that and I think the deputy leader of


Rotherham council has been implicated in this. He has been a


barrier preventing messages from the police getting to the community.


That's not, that should not be the case. He should be a facilitator


trying to get communication between the community and preventing these


paedophiles, these people that were responsible for gang raping and


taking these girls across the country and selling them on. This is


not acceptable. He is of course not here tonight to defend himself. But


Sheila Taylor isn't this precisely part of the problem. You said this


is only one thing we should consider and there are lots of other factors,


but clearly as Amjad Bashir suggests, in this situation,


professionals were just too nervous and professionals maybe with the


best of intentions were reluctant to look properly at what was going on


because of the sensitivities around race? Historically we have looked


back at child sexual exploitation since I have been involved in 1999


when I got involved that you see professionals really not responding


appropriately to children that are telling you it is happening to them,


but they are not being believed, they are not being heard properly


and they are certainly not being responded to properly. If you think


about those 1400 children that we have talked about that have been,


for want of a better word, serially raped over a number of years, what


have we done to help them to repair and recover from that and they are


now in society and if we're not careful we are going to have a


cohort of people who don't know what a healthy sexual relationship is.


And on precisely the point of what should happen next, Jack Dromey


And on precisely the point of what you have confidence as the shadow


Policing Minister you have confidence as the shadow


Yorkshire Police to look back at these crimes properly to investigate


them now properly? That is why there needs to be an independent


investigation by the IPCC, because all those who fail to act deserve to


be called to account. Including those in the Police Service, those


who previously worked for the council as well as of course the


police and crime commission. Briefly, South Yorkshire Police have


intimated they will investigate some of these crimes historically, do you


have confidence in them to do that, particularly as some of the victims


are considering taking legal action against them. That is a conflict of


interest isn't it? There will be no confidence in any investigation


other than it is seen to be independent. Thank you all of you.


other than it is seen to be The NHS budget is insulated


to other Government department, but it is still under significant


pressure. Not least from drugs whose prices climb and climb and climb.


Newsnight has learned that officials plan to threaten to stop buying some


of the most expensive high-tech cancer treatments if the companies


that produce them won't cut their prices. The proposals will be


revealed tomorrow and they affect the cancer drug fund, a scheme set


up in 2010 by David Cameron. With the details we have our policy


editor Chris Cook. Concern about the NHS's unwillingness to spend money


on expensive cancer drugs is a long-running theme. That is why


David Cameron announced the Cancer Drugs Fund back in 2010, an


England-only, ?200 million a year specialist pot to pay for drugs that


otherwise would be refused for costing too much. Just ask Clive


Stone, I met him years ago when we were in opposition. He had cancer


and he is said to me the drug he needed was out there but they


wouldn't give it to him because it is too expensive. Please, if I get


in could I do something about it. We have, a new Cancer Drug Fund that


has got the latest drugs to more than 21,000 people and counting.


Newsnight has learned that the fund is running overbudget, and officials


are expected to announce tomorrow it will be increased from ?200 million


a year to ?280 million a year, starting this year. The fund will be


subjected to a new cost benefit regime, that will mean the least


effective drugs stop being funded and the most expensive drugs will


have to prove their worth if they are continued to be funded. Some


pharmaceutical companies should expect that they will be told their


drugs are too expensive for the drugs fund set up just to payer to


the most expensive drugs. This issue all revolves around NICE, the body


that decides whether or not the drugs are cost effective enough to


be bought by the NHS. They should cost no more than ?30,000 a year for


a year of life in good health. The amount they will pay for that is


sometimes more when dealing with end of life drugs, even so cancer drugs


often just cost way too much. NICE struggles in cancer, that is


publicly acknowledged hence the fund, the issue there really is the


advent of the new science means we have highly targeted medicines


within smaller patient cohorts but fixed R cost, so a drug costing ?1


million over a small amount of patients. You have higher headline


prices per patient, that is what happened over the course of recent


years. This is almost ?3,000 worth of tablets. That is why there is


demand for the fund, and some of these medicines really do make big


differences. In 2008 I was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer, I was


put on to the hormone therapy treatments which are usual in that


situation, they carried on through until my levels changed and I was


advised by my consultant to go on to something called a new drug at the


time. This has allowed me to continue my professional and family


life to the full and has allowed me to avoid chemotherapy and any of its


effects. This was only possible because of the Cancer Drugs Fund.


You if you if the fund lacks rules on cost effectiveness, drug


companies can just charge very high prices. And, when you discuss that


problem one company comes up a lot. Roche, the Swiss pharmagiant


accounts for one quarter of spending. It produces the latest


high cost cancer treatment rejected by NICE. It costs ?90,000 a throw


for six months of extra life. That gives you a cost per QALY of


?166,000, that is several times more than the most generous of NICE


limits. Now officials really don't want to delist effective drugs, nor


do they want to undermine what is a flagship policy for NHS England. But


if they don't have the power to say to drug companies we won't buy at


that price, they don't have a negotiating position at all. And


with rising numbers of cancer patients, the inability to keep the


cost of cancer drugs down is a major concern.


This is a tough issue, Roche say NICE's methods aren't fit for


Europes, other Companies point pharma out the prices for QALY have


not moved with inflation. Many are asking if we should he can empt


cancer patients from the NHS cost systems at all.


I'm joined by my guests this afternoon. Why is cancer special?


Because it affects one in three of us, soon to affect one in two of us.


It is something, a disease that has awful implications but in fact we


can do a lot, more than 50% of cancer patients are now cured. We


have seen a breakthrough in the number of new drugs in the last two


years, 25 new drugs, new drugs, all expensive registered for cancer care


in Europe. For sufferers, patients and the families of those with other


appalling diseases why should they accept that cancer sufferers get


prefer relation financial treatment. Do you accept that is what happens?


That is what is happening. The NHS pot is limited, however you look at


it, the politicians try to bend it but it is limited. If you give more


to cancer you are taking it from somewhere else. Nurses don't syringe


ears any more simply because there is not the funding for their time to


do that. Do you accept that is what we should do? I think the cancer


drugs fund is a political stunt in response to shroud-waving by the big


response to shroud-waving by thebig big pharma companies. Is it only


motivated by political pressure on David Cameron? Yes and the pressure


is enormous, it is brought by the companies themselves but also the


patient organisations which are often fronts for the companies. It


has been alleged that it costs a billion to develop the drug but it


has certainly been suggested only a tenth of that is actually the drug


development cost, the rest is PR, advertising and marketing. These are


big global companies they have clout, they have more power than the


Government in lots of ways and the Government has to stand up to it. Is


this now the Government standing up to big pharma, what do you make of


the idea, why don't they say if you don't lower the prices we won't pay


any more? The cancer drug is a great example, they were asked to come


back with a lower price and they haven't done so. They are in the


press beating each other around the head. The sadness for me as a doctor


is when you see the emotional effect on a patient today. A woman maybe


who has failed on herceptin and a good candidate for that drug and


they have to go through a funding request. To be clear on the


proposal, you back the idea of the Government saying unless you put the


price down, big powerful drug company, we will not fund this drug


at all? I back that, but I think that one has to have an escape


clause, so doctors can prescribe a drug that they think will be the


best thing for their patient. That is the conflict. And David's right,


it is a political stunt. You have got NICE, that is assessor, if the


assessor turns it down how can you have a back door in. That is to


prevent the politicians losing faith coming up, losing face coming up to


an location. Is that the right way to go? It is the only way to go, you


have to stick up to to go? It is the only way to go, you


companies, they will probably back down in the end. They won't do it


easily. It is terrible for patients, of course. But you have to be clear


easily. It is terrible for patients, that although cancer survival has


improved, many of these new drugs are very marginal improvements.


Katsyla the extra life you get compared with standard treatments is


an extra six months, that is not very much for ?100,000. The hope is


that by understanding the molecular targets of their


that by understanding the molecular predict which patients can respond


and then everyone will be happy. If the drugs were expensive


and then everyone will be happy. If used in patients that would


and then everyone will be happy. If I have a patient with lung cancer


that has I have a patient with lung cancer


years now on a drug that costs ?120,000 a year, but he's in


years now on a drug that costs group that will benefit from that


drug. We can predict that. Isn't the bigger problem as David suggests


that with enormous respect medical professionals like you, the research


industry is enormously reliant on the big pharmaceutical companies,


unless tax-payers suddenly want to pay an awful


unless tax-payers suddenly want to going to have power over


Governments? They are, there is no. going to have power over


They do, but I think what has happened with Kancycla is an example


of standing up to it. They can't sell it half the price in France and


twice the price to the NHS, sell it half the price in France and


would ship over in Europe, there has to be a way of coming to an


agreement, there will be in the next few months. Roche made ?7. 7 billion


profit last year, they can afford to reduce the price, they won't,


because once they have done it they will be expected to do it again, of


course. But they cannot go on living in this style for drugs which don't


actually work at all well very many of them. If I was terminally ill and


they said if you have this drug for ?100,000, it is difficult to say


what you will feel when you are terminally ill, but you can have


four months of uncomfortable live extray, I'm not sure that I would


say that I was, it was my duty not to bother with it. It is easy to


intellectualise when you haven't got cancer, if you have got cancer and I


see people every day that have the disease, they want everything, they


are desperate, especially younger people with families, two months to


them is worth having. And studies have shown that for 1% benefit


people will take the drug. If you haven't got cancer it is not so


important. But I do take your point about the balance within the health


service and drugs. How do we prioritise? Various politicians go


with the voters and the voters vote for the NHS and they vote for cancer


as the most important worry they have about the NHS. So politicians


follow that. Cabs Cancer is terrifying that is the target for


the companies. It is also the target for a lot of quacks who immediately


surround anyone with cancer wishing to poke them with pins and all sorts


of concoctions. We will leave it there thank you very much for


joining us. In this country we tend to assume


that guns and children don't really mix very well. That seemingly


responsible assumption would be regarded pretty strangely by many


people across the Atlantic where firearms can be part of family fun.


This particular part of the eternal debate over the right to bear arms


is back. After a nine-year-old in Arizona shot her instructor dead


while she was having a shooting lesson at a firing range, learning


how to use an Uzi, a sub-machine gun almost as big as her. We have to


keep that held in, otherwise the gun won't fire. A regular day out. For


many American families there is nothing unusual to see here. But


seconds later this nine-year-old girl lost control of the Uzi


sub-machine gun killing her instructor, Charles Vacca. When a


nine-year-old gets an Uzi in her hand, the criteria is eight-year-old


to shoot firearms, we instruct kids as young as five on 22 rifles they


don't get to handle the firearms but they are under supervision of their


parents and professional range masters. Six years old! And shooting


a fully automatic. For many parents the right to bear arms isn't just


important, introducing their children to guns they can barely


lift is a rite of passage too. Did you shoot the Uzi? Yeah. That's my


boy. These home videos recorded from shooting ranges across the US


proudly uploaded by parents for the world to see. But America's less


proud of the record of firearms incidents that kill and injure


hundreds of children every single year. 100 children were killed in


accidental shootings in 2013. More than 800 children under 14 are hurt


in nonfatal incidents every year. And 31% of children live in a home


with a gun. Will this latest accident and new focus on the


thousands of others make any difference in a country where for


many owning a gun is a way of life. Finger off the trigger, how did that


feel? Pretty good. From Washington we're joined by Gary Pratt from Gun


Owners of America, and the President of Washington Ceasefire. Thanks for


being with us, can you explain to us in the UK why it is acceptable for a


nine-year-old to be given a lesson in how to use an Uzi sub-machine-gun


which can fire five bullets a second? I'm sure what preceded that


situation, I know that when I have taken my children and they in turn


have taken their children shooting we start with the. 22, as the


gentleman you interviewed had pointed out. And we point have them


graduate to anything until they are ready for it. And that's something


that we can determine, they are under our supervision. This goes on


not only with individual families but their clubs, some scouting


groups provide shooting instruction for young Scouts. So when done


properly I think most Americans say that is a good thing. But in


principle, whatever the type of gun, how young, at what age is it OK? A


seven-year-old, a six-year-old a five-year-old? How young should


children be before they are allowed to handle a gun? In my own family's


case we have made the determination based on their physical capability,


their judgment. It was something that was the parents' call. How old


was your youngest child when you gave them a gun for the first time,


and your grandchildren even? I would imagine eight or nine years old,


same as the girl in this video. Why is that acceptable, it is pretty


hard for many people in the UK to understand that Well you are


starting with a. 22 which has no recoil, they become familiar


whenever they touch the gun, they get ternly lectured about how to use


it safely, and we, I think in America, understand that firearms


ultimately are nothing personal but why we are no longer British. What


do you say to that, it was a tragic accident was it not? It is a tragic


but another unnecessarily accident. I think the key thing on this is


that this is a military assault weapon, it is an automatic weapon


where if you hold your finger on the trigger, bullets will fly, you know


at an incredible rate. So it makes absolutely no sense at all, and I


think it is indicative that mainstream America is disconnected


from the dangers of a gun. Disconnected from the danger of a


gun in the home. We know when there is a gun in the home you are


22-times more likely to kill family member or friend than an intruder.


We have a cultural defect in this country where we can't find that


balance between personal freedoms and public safety. Are you


suggesting that no child should ever be allowed to handle a firearm, even


under supervision? No child should ever be allowed to fire an Uzi with


that type of killing power and that type of immediate catastrophe


waiting to happen. This is not the first event of its kind, in 2008 an


eight-year-old boy in a similar situation in Massachusetts, lost


control of an Uzi and he was the one who was killed in it. This weapon is


almost eight pounds and can fire in some case, some model, over 1,000


bullet as minute. This should just not have happened under any


circumstances, what do you make of that? Let's put it into some more


perspective, the victim in this episode was at greater risk while he


was driving to that range than he was at the range. But cars don't


fire bullets, five bullets a second? More people are killed in


automobiles, including children. Than by firearms, firearms are not


the greatest device connected with people dying. But people need to


drive to get to work, they don't need to allow their nine-year-olds


to use a gun? We will have our disagreement. People need to have


their guns, they are part of our political control of our Government,


they are part of our keeping ourselves safe, some 16-times a day


more defensive gun use occurs than any kind of death resulting from a


firearm. And it is even when you lock at just accidental deaths from


firearms compared to automobiles, than defensive gun use something


like 32-times. Larry see it is from a different perspective. First of


all. That is an understatement. In Washington state now we have more


death from gun violence than car accidents. So right now we have


about a similar number nationwide of 30,000 from guns and 30,000 deaths


from cars, a rate that is about 20-times higher than the average


industrialised nation. Here in Washington state we 600 deaths.


Every time this kind of accident takes place the debate takes place


too, will there ever be a day when the antigun lobby will have to


accept that the American way of life requires access to firearms and you


don't like it, will you ever have to accept it do you believe? No, I


think change is on the way. Mainstream America is being educated


and the risk of having guns. Larry's comment of a gun being used to


deflect a crime 1600 times a day is based on bogus research. Research


that is refuted by the director of prevention from the Harvard school


of public health. They send out false research, we have the mayor


spending $50 million to rebutt this. Larry and his groups have prevent


the researchers to look into gun violence. Thank you for making time


for Newsnight this evening. Eurowoes are back, if they ever


truly disappeared. After the Government fell apart on manoeuvre


truly disappeared. After the how to rescue its economy, France


today announced record unemployment. Italy has fallen into a triple-dip


recession, investors are now so nervous about where to put their


euros, they are paying the German Government to look after their cash.


That is the curious economic quirk of the negative interest rates


charged on German bonds these days. Our economics correspondent Duncan


Weldon has been working out why. How bad is it? The only word to use what


is happening in Europe at the moment is "disaster". What is happening


with the German interest rates today, the German Government can


borrow at record interest rates, after two years the German


Government can borrow at a negative interest rate. People are paying the


German Government to take their money. That is not meant to happen,


that is a sign something is terribly wrong in the economy. If we look at


unemployment and just for context if we look at UK and US unemployment


over the last two years, now it rose during the recession, and since then


as our economies have recovered unemployment starts to fall. But if


we look at Europe you get quite a different picture, so the eurozone


unemployment rose but look what has happened since 2011 it has gone


higher and stayed up there. The UK and the US have had their weakest


recoveries in 100 years but Europe hasn't really had a recovery at all.


Those fundamentals have been the case for some time what are the


markets so worried about today? What the real concern is about at the


moment in Europe is inflation, or rather the lack of inflation. I mean


again if we take a look at the numbers, this is the change in


prices in the European economy. You have 2010, 2011, inflation is going


up, but against 2012 inflation has been collapsing t has been down to


less than half a per cent. What is really concerning people today is in


the coming months prices in Europe, across Europe as a whole might


actually start to fall. Stuff getting cheaper doesn't sound like


the biggest economic problem. But what economists will tell you is it


is terrible consequence, it sucks spending out of the economy and


pushes down pages and making debt harder to pay. That is the last


thing particularly southern Europe needs at the moment. The situation


is quite worrying. I suspect I can guess the depressing answer to this


question, is there any end in sight, any prospect of eurozone politicians


gripping this in a long-term radical way? I think you know the answer and


the answer is depressing, this seems to be a neverending economic crisis


and there is no end in sight at the moment. The real problem is


politics. There is lots the European Central Bank could be doing to get


Europe out of this state. But it has been held back by the Germans who


are very uncomfortable with it. At the moment the French and Italians


are pushing very hard for a deal. They are saying we will carry out


reforms in our economy but you have to give us more breathing space. The


Germans are not budging. They are stuck in this cycle. The really


worrying thing is if this continues for a little while longer and down


the road you will hear more and more voices in countries like Italy who


are starting to say is it worth the pain of being a euro member.


Promises that the Internet can revolutionise your life are rather


hollow if like millions fortunate to live outside our great Metropolis,


your broadband is slow and maybe non-existent. There could be a


solution, it might be in the space all around us. It is being


developed, where else, but where Marconi set up the first wireless


telegraph station, we sent Mark Grossman there, to the Isle of


Wight. Battling the waves and not just in the sea. One of the biggest


changes for the fresh water independent lifeboat is


communication. Radio waves often struggle to get past the spectacular


cliffs at the Isle of Wight coastline. Back in the 1890s Marconi


came here to test his wireless invention, since then radio has


saved thousands of lives, but it is still pretty limited. How dependable


is the radio communication? Essentially we are using the same as


Mar rconi first invented, we are still limited by line of sight and


we can only have one way communication at a time. If somebody


else is talking on the radio that will drown us out. If they have got


a stronger signal. This is particularly frustrating for Jeremy


and the crew, because this lifeboat is otherwise fitted out with the


latest technology, including cameras that could stream real-time rescue


pictures back to base. What the lifeboat desperately need is a


reliable way of getting two-way communication between here and


shore. That's exactly what this little boat has been testing as part


of a UK-wide series of trials and new technology called TV White


Space. Here with the help of a stick and fresh water beach is the


technical bit. What is this white space technology? It is technology


that takes advantage of unused spectrum, that you can utilise for


broadband connectivity. If you think of a spectrum as moving from low


freakies down the long wave, up to the high freakies, which is visible


light, you have a couple of key points. You have your home-based


Wi-Fi that sits here, then the TV broadcasts which are sitting down


here, this is prime real estate spectrum, the broadcasters weren't


stupid, they put their transmissions in the place that gives them best


coverage for the lowest possible power to reach the maximum number of


viewers. If we zoom in on the bits where the television transmissions


are, it looks like this. This is BBC One, this is BBC Two, this is ITV,


you get the idea, and look at this, you have got space here, you have


got space there, you have space inbetween the different


transmissions? What are the spaces there? These spaces stop the


transmissions interfering with each other. That suggests the spaces


can't be used because it would interview with the TV signal? Not


the case you can use them to deliver broadband. One of the problems with


Wi-Fi is how to get it through to the back bedroom and the kitchen. It


is not easy to do now. The reason it doesn't reach these places is


because the frequency is so high. If you lower the frequency to 600, 700


MHz, then had goes much further. Using the TV freakies to send and


receive the Internet it means the signal will go much further than the


Wi-Fi. You can then connect up a whole village with one Wi-Fi hub,


bringing the Internet to the thousands of households currently


off line. This man runs an internet provider on the Isle of Wight and


can't wait to shift his operation into white space. One of the biggest


problems growing that we become approached with are people


struggling to sell their houses in the rural area where the broadband


connection is not good enough. Everyone who knows if you have a


super yacht you can have broadband in the middle of the Atlantic. But


systems like that are out of reach of domestic homes and offices and


independent lifeboats and the RNLI who have to fund their own


purchases. White space allows connectivity to go much longer


through much more challenging conditions, but at a really


affordable price. There is no confusing the centre of Glasgow with


the Isle of Wight what could help rural Britain, could, it is argued,


be equally transformative for cities. Strathclyde University has


been running a pilot to link their cities. Strathclyde University has


campus up with TV white space technology. I can get the


Strathclyde network here, and here, and here and here. Of course the


university could have used conventional technology to


university could have used in and around all these buildings of


their in and around all these buildings of


laying miles of big, fat, expensive cable. Beyond their budget, instead


what have they done? Have a look up there, you see the


what have they done? Have a look up bring me the Internet. The wireless


revolution is just beginning, we have set up a number of nodes on


campus and we have a white space network here so students can pick up


on their phone with a Wi-Fi to a white space connected basestation.


You wait a few years you will have a white space chip in your mobile


device and you can do mobile or Wi-Fi or white space, so as a


research organisation we are looking into


research organisation we are looking designs. This is something that will


happen. It is absolutely going to be a great opportunity for people to be


more connected. Because it really will be wireless everything soon.


White space technology is possible partly because of advances in GPS,


the geographical partly because of advances in GPS,


device wanting partly because of advances in GPS,


of the spectrum has to be established. This is then fed into a


constantly updated database to work out which white spaces are free to


use. Ofcom, who control the TV spectrum are white space


enthusiasts. When might we see it coming in for real? That is what we


are busy working with people at the moment. Rural broadband with


workshops taking place last week to see how people can use it, it is


being used in America and Singapore, the UK is one of the leaders. We


expect people to be able to use it from next year onwards. And speeds


that they can only dream of at the moment, I suppose? Definitely. It


depends how much white space is available and how many channels you


can use in those space, but people will


can use in those space, but people use this application. Bar a few rock


falls the cliffs haven't changed too much since Marconi stood here and


brought radio to the world. Even he would be surely amazed with how far


wireless communication has come since then. Some people we barely


got started. A clarification, earlier one of our guests referred


to the deputy leader of Rotherham council, to be quite clear he was


referring to the former deputy leader, just in the last minute some


breaking news on that story. The Police Commissioner, Shaun Wright,


in south Yorkshire, who was head of Children's Services, during some of


the time when abuse was committed on such a scale in Rotherham, has just


announced that he is resigning from the Labour Party but has said he


remains committed to staying on in his role as Police Commissioner with


responsibility for the police in that area. And a very brief look at


one of tomorrow's papers that is on the front page of the Sun. One of


the victims of that scandal taking an unusual step, waving her


anonymity to tell her story and say how angry she is with Shaun Wright.


That is all we have time for to tonight, good night and thanks for


watching. Another area of low pressure coming


lose close to the UKover night, spreading rain northwards, still


around in Scotland. It


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