24/11/2011 Question Time


24/11/2011

With energy secretary Chris Huhne, Sainsbury's chief exec Justin King, Wikipedia's Jimmy Wales, shadow minister for older people Liz Kendall and Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan.


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Transcript


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Tonight we're in the old roaman city of Bath, and welcome to

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And on our panel here, the Energy and Climate Change secretary Chris

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Huhne, Liz Kendall, from the European Parliament, the

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Conservative Daniel Hannan, the Chief Executive of Sainsbury,

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Justin King and the founder of Wikipedia, the website that settles

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all arguments except those on Question Time, Jimmy Wales.

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Thanks. Our first question tonight from Patrick Wenter please. Is the

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Prime Minister right to call next week's strike irresponsible?

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Daniel Hannan. I think it is irresponsible. We have negotiations

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still under way, and the - a number of the unions had already balloted

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on strike action weeks ago. I think we have to remember why these

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changes are being made. The Government has inHeathrow Airported

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this enormous hole in finances. We have a deficit the size of Greece's.

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We were teetering on the brink of going the way of Greece and some of

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the eurozone countries. Part of solving that deficit has to be to

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restore order and sanity to our long-term liability. Are you saying

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it's irresponsible to take a different view from the Government

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on the way to handle the deficit? Of course it's not. If I wanted to

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say that, that's what I would have said. Why are you saying it's

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irresponsible? Because calling a strike at a time like this, costing

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the economy even more lost revenue and inconveniencing enormous

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numbers of people who are going to have to take day office work

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because their children aren't in school and is on, seems to me a

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dispros portionate reaction when the Government has put on the table

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an offer which would leave lower paid public sector workers better

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off in terms of pensions than they are now and would leave almost all

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public sector workers better off than almost all people in the

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private sector. We have all had hard times recently since the crash

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hit, and my constituents who work in the public sector, as always of

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us have, had to take a decline in their standard oflying. There is a

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gap in pay and pensions. Even now what's on the table is something

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most people working in the real economy would kill for. Thank you.

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APPLAUSE Liz Kendall. I don't think the

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public services - our NHS schools and hospitals are unproductive.

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APPLAUSE Neither is Daniel right in saying

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that the negotiations are ongoing. I think Ministers have had a take-

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it-or-leave-it final offer, no more negotiations. What I think is

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irresponsible is for the Prime Minister not to get back to the

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table and find a solution. The Government needs to have what is

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effectively a 3% tax increase on public sector workers - a proposal

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that wasn't in John Hutton's original plan, but I also think

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that the trade unions need to give ground because as people are living

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longer, they going to have to work longer and make more contribution

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to have a decent income in retirement, but strikes are

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avoidable if people get back around the table, and that's what we're

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urging both the Government and the trade unions to do.

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APPLAUSE You're - your party leader, Ed

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Milliband, said this evening that Government Ministers in this are

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agitators and that they're relishing the prospect of a strike.

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Do you agree with that? No, I don't think so. I think probably David

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Cameron would like a strike to take place next week. Oh. I think that

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he thinks - you know, we've heard reports in the newspapers that he's

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rubbing his hands with kind of glee about it. I think what is

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responsible is for people to get back round the table, and we need a

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- you can only get sustainable reform of public sector pensions if,

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you know, we actually have proper reform going ahead. OK. Are you

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glufl? I'm certainly not gleeful, and I don't recognise that

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description of the Prime Minister or anybody else around the Cabinet

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table at all. The reality is we were very careful on the subject

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because it does touch people's interests directly. We appointed a

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former Labour Cabinet Minister, John Hutton, to look into this.

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These stem directly from his recommendations. It's partly a

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result of the good news story that we're all living ten years longer

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even than in the 1970s when David Lloyd George, a proud Liberal,

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introduced the old-age pension. It was set literally 18 months before

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the point on average which people were expected to die. We now live

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far, far longer. We're far, far fitter. The only way we can have

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better pensions at the end of the day is either we work longer the

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pay for them, or we pay more for them. John Hutton I think has

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proposed a fair way forward. Why is it irresponsible to oppose that?

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Simply because in current circumstances the state of the

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economy, the way in which so many people are out of work - we're

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trying to make ends meet and close what has been the largest budget

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deficit, inheritance from Labour. As a Liberal Democrat I am gutted

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to have had to take many of the decisions we have had to to clean

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up Labour's mess. Frankly then to have a strike over something like

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this is irresponsible. The man in the front. Do you think that during

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the Thatcher years the unions actually took a bit of a bashing,

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and I think it has been a long time coming, this, because it's a new

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breed of union bosses now. I think you said something about the

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Government relishing actually taking on the unions. I think the

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unions are actually relishing taking on the Government especially

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because it's a Conservative Government. Do you think both sides

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are relishing it? I think they're rubbing their hands with joy, to be

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honest. If you think of all the children... Justin King, please.

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I'll come back to you. Justin King. My own view... On his point - is it

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being relished on both sides? think that's the irresponsibility

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if that's indeed the case. I think the fact that both the Prime

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Minister and union leaders are trading brick-backs in public is

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irresponsible. The reality is unions are forced to operate to a

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very specific timetable through balloting their members before they

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can strike. It's therefore not new news or a surprise that we're

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heading towards this industrial action, and so for the leaders of

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the alternate sides to your point of relishing it to be currently

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trading publicly on this issue rather than sitting down behind

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closed doors and sorting it out that to me is the irresponsibility.

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OK. The man up there with the white jacket on. When is the right time

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to strike, then? When is the right time to take action? You're taking

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money off us all over the place - rich bankers, politicians who rip

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us off. When is the right time to strike? Jimmy Wales. I think that

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this question of whether this particular strike - whether - is

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this the right time? Is this irresponsible? I am not enough of

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an expert on the details of the negotiations and where things stand

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to be able to say. I think the gentleman who just asked the

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question made a valid point. We live in a world in which we have

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bailed out the banks who promptly then paid themselves bonuses after

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running their companies into the ground. Now we're broke. We have to

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make these difficult decisions. That's outrage. That's criminal.

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APPLAUSE The woman up there in the back row.

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I actually fine it quite patronising you think we'd choose

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to strike simply to be gleeful. We'll all stand to lose pay, and

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how else would you like us to protest? Daniel Hannan.

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APPLAUSE I haven't suggested anybody is

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doing this gleefulfully. It is, however, matter of record many of

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these ballots were taking place in September long before we got to

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this impasse. A number of these trade unions had already embarked

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on this course. It takes on a momentum, as these things do. Let's

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just remember why we're in this mess. Out of every �4 that the

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Government is spending, one of them is bag borrowed, right? The state

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is already spending more than half our total GDP. We just can't afford

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to carry on with this. So it's not really a question of - in a sort of

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playground way of who started it and is it fair and so on - we

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simply don't have the option of not making savings. If you don't

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believe me, look at what's happening on our doorstep in those

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countries in Europe which haven't tried to live within their means,

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and look at the chaos that's in store. The man up there in the

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spectacles, the man in the third row there. If the panel believe

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these pension terms are fair and reasonable, will they be trading

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their pension conditions for those being offered?

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APPLAUSE Chris Huhne. We've got exactly the

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same terms, and in fact, we took a pay cut when we came into

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Government as Ministers compared with what the last Government was

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being paid. These are tough times. You have to lead from the front. If

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you don't do that quite rightlys people will ask, what -- rightly,

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people will ask, what are you doing? We have to do that in order

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to safeguard the national interests, clear up the mess we inherited in

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terms of that enormous side of the budget deficit. It's a reality! And

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since we first said that remember, the Labour Party at that time was

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saying, "Oh, it's only Greece. We're completely unlike Greece."

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Since then we have had crises hitting Ireland, Portugal, Spain,

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now even Italy. One of the great achievements this Government has to

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its credit so far is getting us out of that danger zone so we don't

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have the same sort of problems that have beset so many countries in

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southern Europe. The woman at the very back there with the spectacles

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in the back row on the right there. What people resent is the pay gap.

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It's all relative. You may have taken a cut in your income, but

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what about somebody who earns �20,000? It makes a huge difference.

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What do you think about the strikes? Well, I think it's part of

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democracy. Unfortunately for Daniel Hannan, we live in a democracy. You

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have to take what comes with it. You, sir, over there. Presumably,

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at some stage, the Government is going to have to give concessions

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in order to end this. Can I make a plea as a pensioner that the

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concessions come in the form of better pensions for pensioners.

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Maybe they can be deferred because the fact is, our pot is going to be

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reduced by these extra concessions that would be made otherwise to the

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public servants. One more point - the man in the blue tie. This is

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not democracy. This is actually a subversion of democracy. What we

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have here is three unions - the vast majority of their members have

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not voted to take part in the strike. It's a minority decision to

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go on strike. The unions are trying to hold the country to ransom. In

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the meantime, we learned yesterday that the Labour Party is accepting

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almost 90% of its funding from these unions, and is entirely in

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the pocket of them. We have a subversion of democracy and not a

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democracy at all. APPLAUSE

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Justin King, we know around about 30% of the union members voted in

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all the different unions that voted. Would that, from your point of view,

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count as a legitimate test of union opinion? I think ultimately every

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trade union member had the opportunity to vote. Those that

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didn't vote, in effect, gave up that opportunity to express their

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voice. Those that did, clearly within those unions voted in favour

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of industrial action. You think we should seek to second-guess that. I

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would like to take it back to what is the real issue here? The real

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issue is a piece of good news. We're all living longer, healthier

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lives. The reality is very few of us have provided adequately for the

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life we're going to enjoy beyond our working lives. I think those of

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us that are a bit older - I consider myself one of those - have

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to ask ourselves tough questions about whether we're going to

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ourselves pay for the retirement we wish to enjoy or to pass that bill

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on to our children. We've got plenty of opportunity to change the

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way we plan for retirement now both in the private and public sector.

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This is not a private versus public issue in my view so that those of

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us that are young enough and in the working population can provide

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differently for our futures because otherwise, it's our children that

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are going to pay that bill. Let's bring this to an end and move to

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another question. Liz Kendall, presumably, a Labour Government

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would be doing something not entirely dissimilar to what this

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coalition Government has been doing? I don't think we'd be

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looking at what is effectively a 3% tax increase which is going to hit

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800,000 of the lowest part-time workers, nine out of ten of whom

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are women, but we have always believed in reform. That's what we

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did when we were in Government around public sector reform, but

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the way we did that was getting people around the table. The only

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way - I think somebody said - they're going to have to give

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concessions at some point. What we did was we negotiated. Both sides

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have to give ground. That's what we would be doing when we're in

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Government, and that's what we're urging on the... A fact here - the

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proposals actually lead to better pensions for... That's not for

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part-time workers. I don't want the two of you to sit here and

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negotiate the deal that's for the unions and the Government.

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Absolutely trucially to low-paid... Not part-time, Chris. We can't

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debate fact. We can only debate opinion I am afraid. We mustn't

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make up facts either, David. you're tweeting... Very happy to

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have a disagreement on opinions, but I want to get the facts

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straight. Your proposal... Do you mind? This is turning into

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pantomime. If you want to join the I'm going to Edward Turner. Is it

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time for the Government to legislate for a privacy law and

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punish future immediate why misconduct. Jimmy Wales? I think on

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this issue I come from the United States and we have a strong first

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amendment tradition and the risk that we are running here, because

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of this misconduct of the media is losing the distinction between

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freedom of speech and criminal behaviour. I think the criminal

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behaviour and some of the most out rageous behaviour needs to be very

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severely punished. The idea that we should rein in the media, is a

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dangerous road. In terms of people going to jail for stealing

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information, for hacking into phones, blagging to get people's

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personal details unethically, you know, toss them in jail.

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APPLAUSE What about the apparently perfectly

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legal methods of invading people's previouscy that we have heard about

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during the inquiry? We need to look at all of those and decide whether

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or not they should be legal. If we are talking about behaviour that

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amounts to stalking and harassing, if it happened to people in

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ordinary lives we would say that's a bit too far and a bit too much.

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In general, if it's just publishing some footballer's affair and if

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they expect they can go around and behave in an out rageous way and

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not be called to task by the public - Sienna Miller said today she was

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chased down a dark Ali by -- alley by eight men and the fact they were

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carrying cameras - To me that is clear harassment. Chasing anyone

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down a dark alley, it's not right. APPLAUSE

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Justin King. Well, I rather agree with Jimmy. Ethink we shouldn't

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throw the baby out with the bath water and I think actually our

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country and society is all the better for the ability of our free

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press to hold those of us in power and those politicians in power to

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account. We should be very careful that we don't give that up. What do

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you make of what Hugh Grant said? You can distinguish between the

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baby and the bath water, you lift the baby out and let the bath water

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runaway. That is the point that Jimmy makes, that most of us can

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see clearly that a lot of the behaviour is unacceptable. Some may

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require a change in the law to provide clarity, but I think also

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people have to remember that they have incredible power already. The

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reason the News of the World is not on sale today is that the public,

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you, said you are simply not going to buy that newspaper again,

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because of the way it behaved. You have transmitted a very clear

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message, which brought about the situation that we are now in, this

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inquiry, so we shouldn't forget that we as consumers and readers

:18:42.:18:47.

have real power to exercise. Toughening up the legislation, the

:18:47.:18:50.

Press Complaints Commission, or the Government getting involved direct,

:18:50.:18:54.

no? I think it's clear. It is impossible for the media to seek to

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continue to argue that they have been able to actually keep their

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own house in order, so it's clear that wherever this inquiry goes and

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we should allow the inquiry to complete its work, I would suggest,

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that we are going to need a PCC that is truly independent and has

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real teeth. APPLAUSE

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Chris Huhne, you may sometimes think you are a victim of press

:19:19.:19:29.
:19:29.:19:30.

harassment, I don't know. The Time's -- Times yesterday was

:19:30.:19:35.

ferocious. Is that fair? I was a journalist for 19 years and so

:19:35.:19:42.

contrary to what you might expect, I would firmly defend the right of

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a free press. I think it's absolutely crucial and the

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Government's trespass into the whole area of attempting to control

:19:49.:19:55.

what happens in the media is very, very dangerous. The inquiry is

:19:55.:19:59.

dangerous? It will be interesting, because it will be absolutely

:19:59.:20:03.

crucial to see what conclusions he draws. Maybe he'll say we should

:20:03.:20:07.

enforce the law properly and clearly we didn't here. The

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Metropolitan Police did not investigate adequately when they

:20:09.:20:14.

should have done, what was going on at the News of the World. Some of

:20:14.:20:19.

us, I said this before the election, said it very loud and clear, we

:20:19.:20:23.

needed a judicial quieary and a proper police investigation --

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inquiry and a proper police investigation. It is now confessed

:20:28.:20:30.

by The Metropolitan Police Commissioner and they need to get

:20:30.:20:34.

to the bottom of this. Maybe that's enough. But we have a situation as

:20:34.:20:37.

well and we have for example the editor of the Daily Mail success

:20:37.:20:42.

that the PCC needs to be beefed up, self-regulation, yes, but with

:20:42.:20:46.

proper penalties and proper rights of redress and I think that is

:20:46.:20:51.

right. We have to be very careful, because the press is a crucial part

:20:51.:20:54.

of bringing excessively powerful people to account. Whether they are

:20:54.:20:58.

in business or whether they are in Government, the press is a crucial

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part of that process and we mustn't feteer the ability to do so.

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have - APPLAUSE

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You have no complaint about the on- going story about who was at the

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wheel of your car speeding down the motorway? I have masses of

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complaipt, very constantly about the treatment of all -- complaints,

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very constantly about all the treatment of the press and that's

:21:23.:21:28.

what goes with the public life. If you can't stand the heat get out of

:21:28.:21:33.

the kitchen. What is happening with that? Please ask the Crown

:21:33.:21:36.

Prosecution Service? You are waiting to hear? Yes. Will you

:21:36.:21:40.

plead not guilty? Absolutely. haven't been on the programme since

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you had that little - Is that right? That is very remiss of you,

:21:46.:21:53.

David. The woman in red and yellow there.

:21:53.:21:59.

Isn't it about time that the media cleaned up its act? There is a

:21:59.:22:04.

difference between the heroic journalism and on the sleazy end

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and it's about time there is an external independent regulatory

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body. The problem with that is how do you distinguish, if you allow

:22:16.:22:22.

the law to distinguish between sleazy against responsible, you may

:22:22.:22:25.

get another minister at some point who has got some trouble with the

:22:25.:22:29.

press, who is not as upstanding about freedom of the press who says

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it is sleazy to talk about my driving record and who was driving

:22:32.:22:36.

my car, we are going to suppress that and that is dangerous for

:22:36.:22:42.

democracy and for all of us. APPLAUSE

:22:42.:22:47.

I'm a staunch defender of the free press in this country. I think it's

:22:47.:22:52.

vital for our democracy, but in answer to Edward's question, we

:22:52.:22:56.

also need a press that is fair and responsible and act within the crim

:22:56.:23:02.

fal law. -- criminal law. That's what we have heard today,

:23:02.:23:08.

particularly the hacking of Milly Dowler's phone. It's appalling.

:23:08.:23:12.

It's not just disgusting, but criminal. I think one of the most

:23:12.:23:18.

important thing that we make sure we get out of the inquiry is proper

:23:18.:23:21.

rights for individuals of redress, so that if the press oversteps the

:23:21.:23:26.

mark they are properly held to account. What about a privacy law?

:23:26.:23:30.

Well, I think the House of Commons has got a committee looking at that

:23:30.:23:34.

at the moment and it is something we need to debate, but what we have

:23:34.:23:38.

seen this week is about people breaking the existing law and not

:23:38.:23:44.

being held to account. You heard JK Rowling says that messages were put

:23:44.:23:48.

in her daughter's satchel at school, wanting to make contact. It doesn't

:23:48.:23:52.

sound it's illegal, but the privacy law would prevent that. People have

:23:52.:23:57.

a right to private life, but I think we need to be careful about a

:23:57.:24:01.

privacy law, because smoims if people or politicians are doing

:24:01.:24:06.

things -- sometimes if people or politicians are doing things that

:24:06.:24:10.

they are doing in public life sometimes need to be exposed. It's

:24:10.:24:15.

really important when we come out of the inquiry that we focus, I

:24:15.:24:18.

think, particularly on ordinary people, who have not had the money

:24:18.:24:21.

or power or the celebrity and what has been happening to those people

:24:21.:24:26.

is also bad, but it's the ordinary people who don't get the right.

:24:26.:24:34.

man on the gangway there. How is it that we are talking about criminal

:24:34.:24:39.

acts and a PPC dealing with it when the place to deal with the criminal

:24:39.:24:43.

acts is the police? Why have the Metropolitan Police failed us so

:24:43.:24:49.

badly Apart from that, what is your view on the on-going control of the

:24:49.:24:55.

press? I think self-regulation is fair. Then we had the banks and the

:24:55.:25:02.

press and then they were hacking murder small girl's phones. I would

:25:02.:25:05.

have an independent regulator independent of the press. Would you

:25:05.:25:11.

have that? We had the crash after the creation of the FSA. It was

:25:11.:25:14.

Government regulation that have failed. There have been times when

:25:14.:25:19.

I have felt ashamed of the British press, even when the behaviour was

:25:19.:25:24.

legal, it was cruel, callous, stupid, insensitive. There were

:25:24.:25:27.

moments during this inquiry when I think any person of sensitivity

:25:27.:25:32.

would have flinched in horror to think people didn't have an intern

:25:32.:25:37.

fal compass holding them back from some of the actions -- internal

:25:37.:25:40.

compass holding them back from some of the actions. The problem with

:25:40.:25:44.

regulation is two-fold. First, nobody will agree on what ought not

:25:44.:25:47.

to be published. Everyone can think of something that they think

:25:47.:25:53.

shouldn't be in the public domain, but no two people will agree on

:25:53.:25:59.

what. I have yet to hear two people agreeing. There is a real

:25:59.:26:03.

difficulty of definition. Secondly, the whole debate has been overtaken

:26:03.:26:06.

by technology. We were in the situation when we had the super-

:26:06.:26:09.

injunctions where the whole country knew who was behind the legal

:26:09.:26:13.

action. When you could tweet it. When you could text it. When it was

:26:13.:26:17.

talked about in every dinner party, but even now it would be illegal

:26:17.:26:22.

for me to mention on the BBC who the people behind the super-

:26:22.:26:29.

injunctions were. Certainly! What should we do instead? Well, firstly,

:26:29.:26:33.

I strongly agree with Jimmy, we need properly to enforce the law on

:26:33.:26:37.

harassment. There are perfectly good common law remedies for people

:26:37.:26:42.

who behave awfully. If you are chased by photographers you could

:26:42.:26:49.

claim that? Or anybody else. There is a well-understood common law

:26:49.:26:52.

definition of harassment, but there is another. Editors should be more

:26:52.:26:56.

afraid of printing something that untrue than of something that is

:26:56.:26:59.

intrusive and if you listened to the testimony over the last two or

:26:59.:27:04.

three days, the thing that most upset a number of the people giving

:27:04.:27:09.

evidence, the McCanns particularly, were the lies that appeared about

:27:09.:27:13.

them. The quid pro quo of not having a privacy law and external

:27:13.:27:18.

regulation and I'm against both, is that if a newspaper prints

:27:18.:27:23.

something that is untrue the damages should not be set by the

:27:23.:27:27.

hurt feeling of the victim, they should be actually punitive damages.

:27:27.:27:30.

They should be a level of damages that makes the newspaper not want

:27:30.:27:39.

to do it again. APPLAUSE

:27:39.:27:43.

You talk about the cool, callous way in which people's privacy was

:27:44.:27:49.

invaded and that you flinked at it. Do you flinch at the fact that your

:27:49.:27:59.

leader is best friends with Rebekah Brooks? I don't think he is. They

:27:59.:28:05.

spent Christmas together. You know what, I would think less of anybody

:28:05.:28:10.

who walked out on a personal relationship for political vention.

:28:10.:28:14.

We know that David Cameron got quite close to the Murdoch family

:28:14.:28:19.

and your former leader got close. Do you approve? You need to be

:28:19.:28:22.

brief. I think you raise an important point, which is that one

:28:22.:28:26.

of the reasons why some of the laws may not have been enforced is

:28:26.:28:30.

because either people have been too frightened to take on the powerful

:28:30.:28:34.

parts of the media, or they've wanted to cosy up to them to get

:28:34.:28:37.

their message across. Politicians have to use the media to

:28:37.:28:40.

communicate with people. I actually think this comes back to the point

:28:40.:28:43.

about the internet and Twitter, which is something I use, because I

:28:43.:28:46.

find it's a direct way to communicate. There is a real

:28:46.:28:51.

problem, because the only party consistently that stood up to News

:28:51.:28:54.

International, neither Labour nor the Conservatives, were the Liberal

:28:54.:28:57.

Democrats and Nick Clegg and through decision after decision,

:28:57.:29:00.

the one political party that News International and Rupert Murdoch

:29:00.:29:04.

could never get to was the Liberal Democrats and I do not believe we

:29:04.:29:09.

would be where we are with the inquiry. I don't think if we had

:29:09.:29:16.

not had the coalition Government and not had the hew and cry, it's

:29:16.:29:20.

all the same thing would have happened that has happened before,

:29:20.:29:26.

and it would have been shoved away. Labour had an awful record in

:29:26.:29:28.

Government in dealing with Murdoch. I called for a police inquiry and

:29:28.:29:33.

we had the Home Secretary and his deputy apologising in the Commons

:29:33.:29:36.

for doing absolutely nothing to ensure that there was a proper

:29:36.:29:42.

police inquiry into the clear evidence that this went March

:29:42.:29:46.

beyond one rogue journalist. Labour lapped it up, because they were

:29:46.:29:56.
:29:56.:29:57.

hoping to get Rupert Murdoch's No-one wants to get rid of our free

:29:57.:30:00.

press. We all need that. Surely, it's just down to people power. If

:30:00.:30:06.

we don't buy the newspapers, they don't get the money. Money talks.

:30:06.:30:11.

That worked with The News of the World. We're halfway through the

:30:11.:30:14.

programme. We have only done two questions. I want to ask the

:30:14.:30:18.

panellists to be more succinct in their answers. Sue Thorne. Yeah,

:30:18.:30:23.

applause for that. Sue Thorne. executive salaries out of control?

:30:23.:30:27.

Are executive salaries out of control? We know the FTSE 100

:30:27.:30:33.

companies - executive salaries went up by half, 50%, as opposed to 2%

:30:33.:30:36.

for the rest of us and cuts for many people too. Justin King,

:30:37.:30:40.

you're a well-paid executive. I don't know whether you want to

:30:40.:30:46.

share with us what you earn before you start your answer or not.

:30:46.:30:50.

can look it up on Wiki peedya. -- Wikipedia.

:30:50.:30:56.

APPLAUSE But is it always accurate?

:30:56.:30:59.

LAUGHTER As it happens... You beat me to it

:30:59.:31:05.

because, as it happens, I did check my Wikipedia entry before I came on

:31:05.:31:11.

the panel, but it's not on there. My salary is a matter of public

:31:11.:31:15.

record. It's 900,000. And I am the Chief Executive of a public company,

:31:15.:31:21.

and the company I work for report in a very straight forward way. The

:31:21.:31:25.

salary I earn and of all the other Chief Executives in our company and

:31:25.:31:28.

the bonuses we earn and how we earn those. That's good model, and I am

:31:29.:31:34.

proud to say that's the approach our company takes. That said, it is

:31:34.:31:37.

inescapable, and the High Pay Commission this week have simply

:31:37.:31:41.

given voice to this - that the vast majority of the UK population think

:31:41.:31:44.

there is something rotten at the top of the big corporations in the

:31:44.:31:49.

UK, so those of us that run big corporations better listen, because

:31:49.:31:53.

if we don't, we're not going to be in a job much longer, and our

:31:53.:31:57.

customers are not going to shop with us, and our employees aren't

:31:57.:32:03.

going to want to work for us. What's rotten? I said people think

:32:03.:32:07.

there is. Is there something rotten? I think the big issue is

:32:07.:32:11.

there is no sense at all that the rewards people are earning is

:32:11.:32:14.

connected to the performance they're delivering. Which side are

:32:14.:32:18.

you on? I think many companies - I would include my own - actually do

:32:18.:32:22.

have that very clear connection. We lay out in very clear terms the

:32:22.:32:25.

earnings and the way people earn. We also have a policy in our

:32:25.:32:30.

company the pay rewards we give all of our employees are the maximum

:32:30.:32:35.

that we give. What about an RBS Chief Executive getting nearly

:32:35.:32:40.

eight million and Lloyds getting over �13 million - do you approve

:32:40.:32:43.

of that? Both of those figures assume success, and as it stands at

:32:43.:32:47.

the moment, they're clearly not successful. I think we should

:32:47.:32:51.

remember, of course, in those two organisations, they're

:32:51.:32:58.

organisations that we as taxpayers and members of public actually own

:32:58.:33:02.

large chunks of at the moment, and the best thing that can possibly

:33:02.:33:06.

happen for us is those two banks become successful and profitable

:33:06.:33:11.

again so we can sell the shares for a profit as taxpayers. We have

:33:11.:33:16.

already bailed them out. We can't change history. We can only change

:33:16.:33:19.

the future. Are salaries out of control or not? I think clearly

:33:19.:33:22.

they are in some organisations because they're clearly not

:33:23.:33:25.

transapparently linked to performance.

:33:25.:33:27.

APPLAUSE Jimmy Wales. I think that in

:33:27.:33:31.

general, yes, salaries are out of control, and I think the real risk

:33:31.:33:36.

here is we view this as a class divide - rich-versus-poor issue,

:33:36.:33:41.

and we think all high salaries need to go out the window. The problem

:33:41.:33:44.

is when salaries are clearly linked to performance for shareholders

:33:44.:33:48.

this is pear fecically good thing. One of the problems we have right

:33:48.:33:52.

now is corporate governance has gotten messed up so too many

:33:52.:33:57.

members of the management for companies are not accountable to

:33:57.:34:00.

the shareholders. Therefore they loot the company for their own

:34:00.:34:04.

benefit against true interests of the owners who have retirement

:34:04.:34:08.

investments and so on. They're really looting? I would say the

:34:08.:34:13.

word looting, yes. You, sir. agree with both of those comments.

:34:13.:34:16.

I agree high pay should be linked to performance. I think that's

:34:16.:34:24.

right. As the UK Plc argument, let's try to promote business in

:34:24.:34:27.

the UK. There is an argument of when you look at yourself in the

:34:27.:34:31.

mirror thinking, am I being too greedy, and should I lead by

:34:31.:34:34.

example by giving away some of what I have? Particularly when we're in

:34:34.:34:40.

a tough time, people are struggling and leading by example people at

:34:40.:34:47.

the top and the director levels. I accept the UK Plc argument. But I

:34:47.:34:52.

think there is a question to be asked in these times. The High Pay

:34:52.:34:56.

Commission which was set up by a Labour-supporting pressure group,

:34:56.:35:00.

of course, said all executive pay packages should be published, that

:35:00.:35:05.

there should be employees on the boards and that the method of

:35:05.:35:08.

deciding salaries is wrong. Do you agree with all of these points? Do

:35:08.:35:11.

you think the Government should act on them? The Government already has

:35:11.:35:16.

because Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, Liberal Democrat, in his

:35:16.:35:24.

conference speech in the autumn laid out a set of proposals we're

:35:24.:35:29.

consulting on. But are you going to have... Well, we'll have to see

:35:29.:35:33.

what comes out of it. No, it's not. We have set out a series of

:35:33.:35:38.

proposals. One is doing it, and one is not doing it. If you in

:35:38.:35:42.

Government try to do something without going through the statutory

:35:42.:35:45.

period for consultation, you get into tremendous trouble, so it is

:35:45.:35:48.

actually important to consult. We're determined that there is

:35:48.:35:52.

clearly a problem. I have my personal views about why the

:35:52.:35:56.

problem arises. I think there are too many people who are on each

:35:56.:35:59.

other's remuneration committees, so one director scratchs the back of

:35:59.:36:03.

another and gives another a pay rise. There is another a very per

:36:03.:36:07.

vasive argument in board rooms a that we have to pay top dollar to

:36:07.:36:11.

get the top people. Every board room says the same thing. As a

:36:11.:36:15.

result, there is a steady creep upwards because they're all

:36:15.:36:20.

actually chasing paying somebody in the top sector. Then there is size

:36:20.:36:24.

because as soon as the company gets bigger, as soon as there is an

:36:24.:36:27.

acquisition, they say, a big company like this, we need to exee.

:36:27.:36:33.

We need a pay rise. There are all sorts of ratchets here. I don't

:36:33.:36:37.

think anybody should begrudge really good pay for really good

:36:37.:36:40.

performance, but I think what there is a lack of trust in at the moment

:36:40.:36:43.

is the link between pay and performance. That's something I

:36:43.:36:52.

know Vinces is derled to put right and the Government will be put ing

:36:52.:36:54.

proposals on during the consultation period.

:36:54.:36:59.

Does it matter that people dislike the salaries people have at the

:36:59.:37:03.

top? They may think Justin King's sausages may not all they're

:37:03.:37:07.

cracked up to be and shouldn't get �900,000? Does it matter? What did

:37:07.:37:14.

you say? His sausages are very nice? Yeah. You can't curry favour.

:37:14.:37:18.

I think it does matter, precisely because we're all living in the

:37:18.:37:22.

same society. We need to have trust that people are performing their

:37:22.:37:25.

roles properly and are being remunerated for that you lose

:37:26.:37:30.

motivation from employees if you don't. Do you agree? It's ludicrous

:37:30.:37:34.

for me to say what Justin King should be paid. I have only met him.

:37:34.:37:39.

I enjoy his sausages, but neither I nor anyone else in the audience is

:37:39.:37:43.

in a position to say. I agree with Jimmy Wales that we could do much

:37:44.:37:48.

more to make shareholders think of themselves as proprietors rather

:37:48.:37:51.

than just investors, and I think there could be a real change in the

:37:51.:37:54.

climate of corporations if that simple shift were made, but the

:37:54.:37:58.

idea that a Government remuneration committee could decide what level

:37:58.:38:02.

of pay is proper - I mean, just think about that for five minutes,

:38:02.:38:06.

and you'll see it leads to bankruptcy, to the worst kind of

:38:06.:38:09.

favoritism. If that worked, we'd have lost the Cold War, and the

:38:09.:38:12.

Soviet Union would have won. Do you think there should be employee

:38:12.:38:15.

representatives onboard? No. I think the answer is to go down the

:38:15.:38:20.

road towards proper accountability to the people who own the company,

:38:20.:38:23.

which is the shareholders. I also strongly agree with what the

:38:23.:38:27.

gentleman there said about giving away - if the system is working

:38:27.:38:31.

properly, a man or a woman who has done very well and then chooses to

:38:31.:38:35.

give to good causes seems to me a much preferable situation than that

:38:35.:38:40.

chairman or that CEO loading the costs on to his shareholders, his

:38:40.:38:43.

customers and his clients in the name of corporate social

:38:43.:38:48.

responsibility or indeed loading it on to everyone else in tax rises.

:38:48.:38:53.

It was your party that famously said, "We're intensely relaxed

:38:53.:39:03.

about people getting -" the adverb was "filthy rich" - Peter Mandelson.

:39:03.:39:06.

Executives' salaries out of control or... Can I say I didn't agree with

:39:06.:39:09.

that comment at the time, and I don't agree with it now. I think

:39:09.:39:13.

there is a very strong sense of fairness. Sue's initial question

:39:13.:39:18.

was, do people think pay is getting out of control? I do think that

:39:18.:39:23.

when people on median wages are actually seeing a 3.5% cut to their

:39:23.:39:27.

pay once inflation is taken into account, and yet some people who

:39:27.:39:31.

have, you know, not been successful at getting big rewards - they think

:39:31.:39:35.

that's unfair - I think it's very important what Justin has said

:39:35.:39:39.

about his recognition that people need to feel a system is

:39:39.:39:44.

transparent and fair. I hope that Justin leads that call amongst

:39:44.:39:49.

other Chief Executives. I do believe we need more transparency,

:39:49.:39:53.

and I also do believe that having an employee on remuneration

:39:53.:39:58.

committees is a bit of a test and a challenge there if you're trying to

:39:58.:40:02.

agree a very high pay packet for yourself, but you have an employee

:40:02.:40:05.

on the remuneration committee and says, "What's actually happening to

:40:05.:40:11.

us?" I do think that gives a bit of a challenge in the system. I'll go

:40:11.:40:16.

to you, sir, over there. I agree that success should be linked to

:40:16.:40:20.

wage, but I don't agree that there shouldn't be a limit - there should

:40:20.:40:25.

be limits to it, and I think even 900,000 is immoral because it could

:40:25.:40:30.

make hundreds of people's lives better, and I think they should be

:40:30.:40:33.

moderated by the consumers. The Government could help, but it's

:40:33.:40:38.

really in the power of everyone in the audience who can choose to

:40:38.:40:42.

boycott companies who have big bonuses and really big wages.

:40:42.:40:48.

You, sir, up there in the white jacket? Last it into on Newsnight,

:40:48.:40:52.

there was an energy executive on �1.9 million. What does that say

:40:52.:40:54.

about when old people are dying of cold?

:40:54.:40:58.

APPLAUSE And you in the middle.

:40:58.:41:04.

APPLAUSE Justin, are you really worth 40

:41:04.:41:07.

times per year the average man and woman? Are you 40 times as

:41:07.:41:17.
:41:17.:41:17.

productive as them? That, of course, is an impossible question to answer.

:41:18.:41:21.

The only people that can really answer that question are, as you've

:41:21.:41:26.

heard from Daniel, the shareholders in our company. Ultimately, my

:41:26.:41:29.

responsibility is to deliver a successful business and successful

:41:29.:41:34.

results. As I said earlier, we're very clear and open about our pay

:41:34.:41:39.

policy in Sainsbury. We put that to a vote every year with our

:41:39.:41:44.

shareholders. Last year 98% of our shareholders supported our policy

:41:44.:41:48.

on pay and remuneration. Ultimately they're the judges of whether we as

:41:48.:41:51.

a management team - including me - are delivering the results that

:41:51.:41:56.

we're worth the money they pay us. What he's asking - I am curious -

:41:56.:42:01.

you know, you can't work more than 365 days a year. What is it that

:42:01.:42:05.

you do that is so special that - LAUGHTER

:42:05.:42:11.

That makes it 40 times... But I think you can't - I mean, you can't

:42:11.:42:16.

equate one type of work to another in terms of market forces in our

:42:16.:42:21.

society. The reality is that in all walks of life, people that are

:42:21.:42:26.

doing specific jobs that very few other people are able to do are

:42:26.:42:30.

sports stars, are entertainment stars, are media stars, David, do

:42:30.:42:34.

attract... Don't get paid much. Would you like to tell us how much?

:42:34.:42:41.

No, it's gone down. We had the cuts. But then it's the reality - the

:42:41.:42:46.

people at the top of professions - actually, I started out as a young

:42:46.:42:49.

person in business really aspiring to the idea if I did a great job

:42:49.:42:53.

over a long period of time, I could get to the top of an organisation

:42:53.:42:56.

and have the great privilege, which I consider it to be, of leading an

:42:56.:43:00.

organisation with 150,000 people in it. That's something that I am very

:43:00.:43:03.

proud to have achieved. I am going to take two more questions. The

:43:03.:43:09.

woman on the gangway there. That's you, yes. So could you carry a

:43:09.:43:13.

truss up on to a roof, then? Because I think that people are

:43:13.:43:16.

doing hard, physical jobs and getting paid significantly less

:43:16.:43:23.

than people like you. Could you carry bricks up on to a

:43:23.:43:27.

roof? I expect he probably could if he - I don't know. You probably

:43:27.:43:30.

could. The woman over there on the left. You say that success is

:43:30.:43:35.

linked to ages. What about the nurses, the doctors, the teachers

:43:35.:43:40.

who all do such an amazing job for our community? They don't get paid

:43:40.:43:44.

that much. Chris Huhne, I want you to be very brief. Pick up on what

:43:44.:43:50.

he said about the green money going to Monaco and all of that.

:43:50.:43:53.

entirely agree with the gentleman who raised the tax... That's what

:43:53.:43:59.

Nick Clegg said to me when I asked him in Bath Hall. Honestly, I

:43:59.:44:05.

interpreted his reply as being "Don't ask silly questions." If you

:44:05.:44:09.

would let me tell you what we're actually doing about it, I'll tell

:44:09.:44:12.

you. We have been trying to close all the loopholes we can. We, for

:44:12.:44:17.

example, have been signing agreements with countries that have

:44:17.:44:20.

traditionally been boltholes for funk money like Switzerland to make

:44:20.:44:24.

sure that hay they're actually reporting back, people who are

:44:24.:44:27.

evading British taxes, because I entirely agree with you - it's

:44:27.:44:31.

completely unacceptable for the rest of us who honestly pay our tax

:44:31.:44:36.

to have a few people managing to get their money out from under and

:44:36.:44:41.

come and enjoy the right of citizenship in our country but

:44:41.:44:44.

aren't prepared to pay for it, and they should. We'll speed on to a

:44:44.:44:49.

question from Mark Simpson, please. Is the coalition living up to its

:44:49.:44:53.

promise of being the greenest Government ever? Chris Huhne

:44:53.:44:58.

actually said it was going to be that. Is it? Daniel Hannan.

:44:58.:45:02.

Worryingly, it is in the sense of fuel bills shooting up and

:45:02.:45:05.

burdening our economy, as if we didn't have enough on our plate

:45:06.:45:11.

already without these arbitrary and unforced additional costs. I mean,

:45:11.:45:14.

there are lots of things you can do to get an economy going again. You

:45:14.:45:18.

can make it easier to hire and fire people. You can cut the regulation.

:45:18.:45:24.

You can cut the taxes. One thing that'll always jolt an economy is

:45:24.:45:28.

cheaper energy. It makes exports more attractive. The one thing that

:45:28.:45:32.

seems to be jolting the United States out of the mess they were in

:45:32.:45:36.

is the sudden discovery of all the shale gas they have started getting

:45:36.:45:41.

on tap. The good news is we have similar deposits in this country -

:45:41.:45:48.

not as large. So it seems to me a bizarre thing that we should be

:45:48.:45:51.

choosing to burden our economic recovery at a time like this for

:45:51.:45:55.

the sake of making a point because anything that we do unilaterally,

:45:55.:45:59.

when it isn't being matched by the rest of the world, is simply using

:45:59.:46:03.

legislation to show what nice people we are. It isn't affecting

:46:03.:46:06.

any outcome in the real world. It isn't having any impact on climate

:46:06.:46:10.

change, and the worst reason to pass a law is simply in this

:46:10.:46:20.

Jimmy Wales, do you agree with Daniel on that one? Are you for

:46:20.:46:23.

greening? I think it's a very complicated issue and I am not

:46:23.:46:29.

enough of an expert to be able to offer a sensible opinion. OK. Thank

:46:29.:46:36.

you. I can just say I have no idea because I'm not a politician.

:46:36.:46:46.
:46:46.:46:49.

kin King. Well -- Just kin King? Justin King. Well, I would like to

:46:49.:46:53.

take Chris back to an answer to an earlier question, where I think he

:46:53.:47:01.

said and I'll par phrase, it was not Government -- para phrase, it

:47:01.:47:11.

was not Government policy regarding the consultation. They have

:47:11.:47:13.

announced one that does not conclude until after the change

:47:13.:47:16.

that they are consulting on is brought into effect on 12th

:47:16.:47:23.

December. The consequence of that is that actually it has stopped in

:47:23.:47:28.

its tracks a massive investment in certain energies in our country and

:47:28.:47:31.

disappointingly that has a second effect, which we saw people

:47:31.:47:35.

marching on Parliament, protesting, only a couple of days ago, probably

:47:36.:47:45.
:47:46.:47:48.

cost �25 -- 25,000 jobs in that industry. You mean solar panelling.

:47:48.:47:53.

That's it. Chris Huhne, would you like to answer this? You've always

:47:53.:47:58.

been a believer in the green stuff and prices will go up and we'll all

:47:58.:48:03.

be better off using less fuel, even if we are a bit colder - you didn't

:48:03.:48:08.

a that bit - and then you are in a Government that has halved the

:48:08.:48:12.

tariff for sticking up the solar panels? Are you behind that?

:48:12.:48:17.

reason for that is very simple. you approve? Of course, I've been

:48:17.:48:20.

defending it. The reason why the tariff has been halved is because

:48:20.:48:24.

the prices have come down so much. We have had an enormous reduction

:48:24.:48:29.

in the cost of solar panels. Unfortunately, under the scheme

:48:29.:48:33.

that was introduced by my predecessor, now the Labour leader,

:48:33.:48:36.

there was no recognition of the real world and what would happen if

:48:36.:48:41.

you had a 30% and 70% reduction in the cost and you have to bring the

:48:41.:48:44.

subsidy down, otherwise the costs go through the roof and I'm

:48:45.:48:48.

delighted I'm being attacked by the right from Dan, who thinks we are

:48:48.:48:54.

massively adding to bills and then from left, from the Chief Executive

:48:55.:48:59.

of Sainsbury's, who thinks we are cutting too much off. If we had

:48:59.:49:08.

left the scheme to run on we would have been adding �26 to every

:49:09.:49:14.

single family's energy bill by 2020. The scheme, as you well know,

:49:14.:49:19.

finished at the end of March next year. What you have done is to

:49:19.:49:25.

catch a load of companies out that have already made decisions about

:49:25.:49:30.

investments by in effect retrospectively changing the scheme.

:49:30.:49:37.

That is not true, Justin. Firstly, nobody who has installed any

:49:37.:49:41.

installation now is going to have the tariffs changed. It will go on

:49:41.:49:46.

being paid for 25 years at a rate of return which is frankly

:49:46.:49:49.

wonderful for people who got in there. Anything in real terms

:49:49.:49:56.

between 10% and 16%. That is not a sensible use of bill payers' or

:49:56.:50:01.

taxpayers' money. There are tens of thousands of householders who have

:50:02.:50:06.

paid deposits and made commitments to have these systems installed in

:50:06.:50:10.

the next six months, so they are not going to get the benefit of the

:50:10.:50:13.

system that they believed existed when they made that commitment.

:50:13.:50:17.

What will you say to those houses? APPLAUSE

:50:17.:50:22.

Firstly, the scheme that we are consulting on, which involves a

:50:22.:50:27.

halving of the tariff, still leads to a real return for those

:50:27.:50:32.

householders of 5% in real terms for 25 years. It is very generous

:50:32.:50:37.

and it brings it back into line with the original intention of the

:50:37.:50:42.

scheme, when the Labour Party introduced it in April 2010. What

:50:42.:50:47.

does Liz think. No, they are not the greenest Government ever. It's

:50:47.:50:53.

not only what they are doing on feeding tariffs, it's that they

:50:53.:50:57.

have cancelled one of our carbon capture and storage projects, which

:50:57.:51:02.

was another move towards clean energy. Whatever Chris says, the

:51:02.:51:06.

CBI, the businesses say, we are not going to invest in this any more

:51:06.:51:10.

and let's just see what other countries are doing. Last month,

:51:10.:51:16.

Germany announced it's going to be investing 85 billion into renewable

:51:16.:51:20.

energy over the next five years. That is not just great for the

:51:20.:51:23.

environment, but creating huge numbers of jobs. We need to get

:51:23.:51:28.

into the business, not just for the planet, but for the future of our

:51:28.:51:33.

economy. We have just done that with the consultation. If the

:51:33.:51:37.

Government taxed 100% and employed everyone surely we would be well

:51:37.:51:43.

off. I know you are not - One at a time. The key point is we have

:51:43.:51:46.

encouraged renewable energy. If you look at what is happening with the

:51:46.:51:50.

renewable obligation, which is our main way of encouraging big-scale

:51:50.:52:00.
:52:00.:52:01.

renublz and off-shore -- re nubl -- renewables and and off-shore

:52:01.:52:11.
:52:11.:52:12.

energies. We were 25th out of 27 EU states. With regard to Germany, OK,

:52:12.:52:17.

they've pulled out of the nuclear industry and they have an amazingly

:52:17.:52:20.

strong renewable industry. UK has decided to go the other way. Why is

:52:20.:52:26.

it? No, we haven't. Absolutely not. Can I just request that Chris stops

:52:27.:52:30.

referring to Labour and the Liberal Democrats. We had a message from

:52:30.:52:34.

the man at the back that said 30% of people voted in the unions. How

:52:34.:52:38.

many of our country voted for the Government that we have got now?

:52:38.:52:48.
:52:48.:52:49.

APPLAUSE The Government has increased the

:52:49.:52:53.

amount of nuclear power plants. I read it in the newspapers. You are

:52:53.:52:57.

increasing if you clear power. You can't say you are not. The man

:52:57.:53:06.

there. I run a company based nearby and we have created 350 jobs. We

:53:06.:53:10.

are also responsible for putting in free solar cells and I don't have

:53:10.:53:14.

an objection to you reducing the feed-in tariff. My objection is

:53:14.:53:19.

that you believe that you can make a company turn around in a six-week

:53:19.:53:22.

period. You make an announcement and within six weeks you believe

:53:22.:53:26.

that we can make that change and we will see in my company there will

:53:26.:53:31.

be 300 people who lose their jobs as a result of the decision you

:53:31.:53:34.

made because you haven't made it on a timely basis. That is what you

:53:34.:53:40.

should be thinking about. APPLAUSE

:53:40.:53:46.

I want to take a last question. You can talk to him after about that

:53:46.:53:53.

issue. How would you react to a letter of apology from a criminal

:53:53.:53:57.

convicted of burgling you? Jimmy Wales, you know the policy of

:53:57.:54:00.

getting the criminal to write to the person they've upset or

:54:00.:54:04.

attacked or whatever. There is this letter, which everyone has seen

:54:04.:54:08.

today and we have got it here. "I don't know why I'm writing a letter

:54:08.:54:12.

to you. I've been forced to right this. To be honest I'm not bothered

:54:12.:54:17.

or sorry about the fact I burgled your house. Basically, it was your

:54:17.:54:22.

fault anyway. I'm going to run you through the dumb mistakes you made.

:54:22.:54:26.

You didn't shut your curtains. Second I you're dumb to think you

:54:26.:54:30.

can live in your area and you are thick enough to leave your

:54:30.:54:33.

downstairs kitchen window open. I wouldn't do that in a million years.

:54:34.:54:38.

I don't feel sorry for you and I won't show you any sympathy or

:54:38.:54:45.

remorse.." It's a classic letter. This idea of the criminal

:54:45.:54:52.

apologising? In favour of that? Yeah, I think I'm in favour in

:54:52.:54:58.

general that criminals should be forced to apologise. I'm a little

:54:58.:55:02.

annoyed for the BBC for making a huge story about this. It's a

:55:02.:55:05.

delicious letter. No question. Everyone enjoyed reading this, but

:55:05.:55:09.

apparently it never went to the family at all, so it's not quite as

:55:09.:55:16.

out rageous as we might hope. was put about by the police, to

:55:16.:55:20.

show the kind of letters people shouldn't write? Something like

:55:20.:55:24.

that. Odd story. Clearly, if we can get criminals to somehow

:55:24.:55:28.

acknowledge what they've done wrong and make an apology to the relevant

:55:28.:55:32.

person, why not? It seems like a good thing to do. Do you think the

:55:32.:55:37.

press will apologise to the people in the Leveson inquiry? Daniel

:55:37.:55:45.

Hannon? I'm all in favour of people apologising in a part of a system

:55:45.:55:49.

that uses other issues. You wonder of the moral vacuum or the people

:55:49.:55:54.

who are taking the metal of the war memorials. You wonder what has gone

:55:54.:55:56.

wrong that people have got themselves into a position where

:55:56.:55:59.

they thought this was an acceptable thing to do. I don't think

:55:59.:56:02.

governments have the power to stop this. Governments do things badly.

:56:02.:56:06.

We have had a demonstration on energy policy and they are bad at

:56:06.:56:09.

building planes and running schools and bad at instilling morality, but

:56:10.:56:15.

the rest of us have a real duty to try to ensure that we are bringing

:56:15.:56:23.

people up in a way it wouldn't occur to them. I agree with Jimmy,

:56:23.:56:29.

if it's done properly and the criminals can take responsibility

:56:29.:56:34.

for what they've done and to apologise to the victims that, can

:56:34.:56:38.

work. We have also had community pay-back schemes in my constituency,

:56:38.:56:43.

which I strongly support, but it has to be done in the right way.

:56:44.:56:48.

believe that if such letters are institutionalised it will simply

:56:48.:56:53.

become a form of words that people use to get out of it. Maybe that is

:56:53.:56:57.

what the 16-year-old was doing. This doesn't mean anything unless I

:56:57.:57:03.

really mean it. That's absolutely the key point. If you are forced to

:57:03.:57:09.

do it it doesn't mean anything, but there is evidence about restorative

:57:09.:57:14.

justice when someone is genuinely apologising and the evidence is and

:57:14.:57:16.

particularly if they have met the victim and genuinely apologised,

:57:16.:57:21.

it's good for the victim, because it helps reconcile them to what has

:57:21.:57:26.

happened, but also means they are much less likely to re-offence, so

:57:26.:57:28.

-- re-offend, so if they are remorseful then that is a good

:57:28.:57:32.

thing and should be encouraged, but this is learning by rot it's bad

:57:32.:57:42.
:57:42.:57:42.

news. Who is the one to judge? Surely if this young man has the

:57:42.:57:46.

audacity not to show remorse the community punishment should have

:57:46.:57:51.

been increased to something far harsher? Justin King? It is clear

:57:51.:57:55.

that you can't force people to make an apology and that letter

:57:55.:57:58.

demonstrates that the young person involved had no concept of the

:57:58.:58:01.

crime that they had committed or the impact that would have had on

:58:01.:58:05.

the people he committed that crime against. Therefore, you have to

:58:05.:58:11.

come back and I agree with Chris on this issue, which is we have to re-

:58:11.:58:14.

connect criminals to the idea that their crime has consequence and in

:58:14.:58:17.

many areas I think that does lead to changed behaviour. Thank you

:58:17.:58:23.

very much. Our time is up. We have overrun and Andrew Neil will be

:58:23.:58:28.

very cross. We'll be in Dagenham next week. On the panel we have the

:58:29.:58:34.

Justice Secretary Ken Clarke, we have a member from Labour, and

:58:34.:58:40.

Deborah immediate an from the dragons' den and an American

:58:40.:58:45.

political writer David Frumm and the teachers' union leader. The

:58:45.:58:48.

week after, we'll be in Stoke-on- Trent. I don't have any details on

:58:48.:58:52.

who will be there, but if you want to come to either you know what to

:58:52.:58:58.

Question Time comes from Bath. On the panel are energy secretary Chris Huhne, Sainsbury's chief executive Justin King, Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales, shadow minister for older people Liz Kendall and Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan.

Chaired by David Dimbleby.


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