20/03/2014 Question Time


20/03/2014

David Dimbleby presents topical debate from Warrington. On the panel are Danny Alexander, Andy Burnham, Dominic Raab MP, Jill Kirby and crime writer Val McDermid.


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Transcript


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And evening all, whether you are at home or here in the audience waiting

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to put questions to our panel and I'm always asked this - no, they do

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not know the questions in advance. Our panel tonight, one of the

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authors of yesterday's budget, the Liberal Democrat Chief Secretary to

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the Treasury, Danny Alexander. Labour's shadow Health Secretary,

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Andy Burnham. A Conservative MP, Dominic Raab who

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has been making a name for himself on the backbenches and former direct

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or director of the think-tank, Jill Kirby and a crime writer who has

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written 28 novels which have sold 12 million copies worldwide, Val

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McDemid-. And David Burgess Joyce, your

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question, please. It would appear to us northern folk that the economy is

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being driven by the south-east. Does the panel have any idea when the

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rest of us will feel some of that heat? When is it going to reach

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here? Val McDermid? It is hard to say when it will. We seem to have

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been saying the same thing for the last 35 years. I can remember

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working and living in the north-west of England for most of that time. It

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does seem there is a strong focus on what happens down the south and we

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end up with what is leftover on the table. Most of us who remember the

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'80s remember how deeply our traditional sfris cut in the north

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and doing was done to replace them. -- traditional industries.

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Yesterday's budget didn't offer anything for those stuck out in the

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regions. Do you think it is deliberate regret? I don't think it

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is deliberate. I don't think they. Dominic Raab First of all the

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recovery is going well. We have record jobsworth. There has been 1.

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7 million new jobs in the private sector under this Government. Double

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the record of a decade under Labour and I don't accept that it has been

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all down in the south or in London. Up here in Warrington, for example,

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unemployment is down 30% since this Government. There have 2,500 new

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businesses between 2010 and 2012 but I accept we need it make sure we

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have a more balanced recovery and stronger economic competitiveness

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across the whole country. That's what, for example, investigating in

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shale gas which will hopefully reap dividends across the country and

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what things like HS2 are supposed to do and even with this week, we have

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heard with the new updates with the plans that Hitachi have said they're

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going to base their global rail business in the UK and build another

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factory in the north. We are getting there, slowly but surely. I accept

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the premise. In practice we are making gross. Juf said it is varied

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but 80% of new jobs are created are in London and four out of five are

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in low-paid sectors. If only 20% of the new jobs are coming to the

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north, there is a disproportion to that. You cannot say we are all

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recovering the say. We are not in all this together. The south are

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getting 08% more jobs than the north. Andy Burnham, answer that. My

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point back to Dominic would be - recovery going well for who? You

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look for the for unemployment across the north-west? We then the up this

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week in the north-west. It is an indictment. Look at the Budget. The

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Evening Standard last night proclaimed it a Budget for London

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and announced the investment for the different pet schemes people were

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raising in London. What was in it for the north or north-west? I

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didn't hear T you put your finger on it. They talk about private sector

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jobs. How many are part-time? How many of them are zero hours

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contracts. I forever have people in my surgery saying - they won't let

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me work more than 23 hours because they don't want ton pay the extras

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or we have people on zero hours contracts, so they can't find out

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what they will earn one week to the next, so they cannot plan for their

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life, get a loan or a mortgage. That's the reality of the economy.

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Too much in the north. I have said this, for many years, we flif a

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London-centric country. We live in. Policies designed for London, not

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the whole country and this has to change.

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APPLAUSE Danny Alexander? Well, I think the

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questionnaire raises one of the most important points for the UK economy,

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which is how can we make sure that growth is balanced, that the future

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of our is balanced and benefits everyone across the whole of the UK.

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Frankly, we had several decades of governments that were obsessed with

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the City of London, banking system and financial service, spent all

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their time as Andy and his colleagues did, going on prawn

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cocktail offensives to charm the bankers and City Whizz Kidz to pay

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more tax on the basing that would support everything. And the things

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like manufacturing community, for the whole of the country,

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particularfully Scotland, and in the north, were neglected. The decline

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that Labour had. That's wrong. Some of the things we were doing

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yesterday, to directly answer your question, supporting energy

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intensive industries, chemical and steel works and the big

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manufacturing companies through changes on energy policies,

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supporting manufacturing businesses to invest, in new plant and

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equipment by doubling capital allowances available to businesses

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to invest in growing their own business, additional support for

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apprenticeships, crucially important for growing the skills we need for

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future economy. There was more money to encourage small and medium-sized

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businesses to take on apprentices. One of the things I'm proud of. So,

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when he says the evening Papers in London said it was a budget for

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London and it is London-centric, say that's what they are, but not what

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you were? That is what I would say. I said in Scotland it was a budget

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for Scotland because we are supporting investment in the oil and

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goes sector which is crucially important to the UK UK economy. Do

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you agree with him, it is a budget for everybody? I must confess, I

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thought the budget was OK. It wasn't a criticism. Coalition government,

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who I think are doing a reasonable job. It was more around pushing

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people out of London into the provinces with their businesses. I

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used to work in HR. I still keep an eye on all the jobs now seem to be

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advertised, even the senior jobs and it is almost like there is a retreat

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into London. It is a different country from the rest of the UK and

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this is' quite worrying. -- and that's quite worrying.

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APPLAUSE The woman at the back in orange.

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Could I just ask about youth employment? You mentioned

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apprenticeships but it is still a big concern in the north-west,

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certainly. I think youth employment is a big concern across the whole

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country. Youth unemployment is starting to come down but we need to

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do more to help. One of the things I'm proudest of as a Liberal

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Democrat in the Coalition Government is the massive expansion in the

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apprenticeships we have presided over. It is a good way for

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businesses to take on young people and for young people to gain the

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skills they need for the future of our economy. That alongside the big

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cuts to income tax for people on lower incomes, are two of the areas

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where I think the Liberal Democrats have made the biggest contribution

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to getting the country back on the right track. I share the concern

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that too much of the growth and wealth is concentrated in the

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south-east. We need to look at Government's policies, both this

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Government and its predecessor, one of the most damaging policies as

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Danny alluded to is carbon tax on industries, industries that were

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successful. Places like Stoke-on-Trent not far from here and

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in the north. You cannot expect the whole country to unite around the

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same jobs that are happening in London. We can't all be dependent on

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consumer spending and debt-fuel growth. We knead to be making and

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exporting but that doesn't just happen through special little

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allowances and a little bit of money here and there. It is fundamentally

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changed by the kind of energy policies we have. If we are making

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it impossibleably expensive to manufacturer He this country and all

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the other energy intensive industries which are clobbered by

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green taxes which are OK in London at Metropolitan dinner parties but

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in the country have had a profound effect in the economy. We cannot

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reinvent those things and bring those jobs back overnight. We will

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not do it by tinkering with the carbon floor price. We need to do

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much more. Woman at the back there. Well, I feel this is all started in

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Liverpool in the '80s and I believe Margaret Thatcher had a big Nelson

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Mandela this process but Dominic mentioned HS2 bringing income to the

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North West. It is not stopping anywhere here. It is stopping at

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mnch Europe and then carrying on. You will get people flying into

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Manchester Airport, straight out of the north-west. I don't understand

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how you feel that's going to be bringing much benefit.

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On that point, the interim report that came in this week on this, said

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one of the things - two key things - first, we need to get more value for

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money out of the project. I know there are concerns about that. But,

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also, we want to bring forward the extension of phase 1 so it

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incorporates Crewe as a regional hub. You are trie. Can't just be an

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elevator between north and south. -- you are right. It needs to promote

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greater connections between people and businesses.

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We will take a question on this. We will stick with the idea of the

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north/south but a question from Leanne Round on HS2. Is the high

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speed rail link worth the money? Is it worth the money and will it

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achieve what you were saying? What do you think? Are you for it? I am

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for the principle but we will have to see whether it is worth the

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money. You know, there can't be a blank cheque as Ed Balls has said. I

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grew up in this area and know it well. I observe the routes south are

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full. The West Coast Main Line and M6 are full. We cannot carry on as

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we are, we will not be able to move. The principle is a good one but the

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precise plan, I don't think does maximise the benefit for the

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north-west. I have had to ask some tough questions about HS2. It comes

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right through my constituency in Leigh T causes maximum disruption in

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my view but offers very little benefit as the lady at the back was

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saying. -- it causes. I have called for

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changes, I have said there needs to be changes to maximise all of the

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north-west. How do you do that? You are all talking about the north not

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benefitting. David Higgins said that. You are saying it got behind

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because of Labour but what you have done, Jill Kirby says is not enough.

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How is this part of the country going ever to catch up and balance?

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Is it possible it can balance with the south-east and London, or is it

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a pipe dream that politicians talk about and never achieve. He has said

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there need to be changes to improve connectivity. I agree. Coming back

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to Danny. He said the north went into decline in the Labour years. I

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fundamentally object to that. I saw Liverpool and Manchester go into

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massive decline in the 1980s and 1990s. I had to leave Warrington, as

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a young man, after university to get a job in the south because there was

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nothing here. Liverpool revived, Manchester revived this. Area

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revived under our Government. You took away the north-west development

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agency, which in my view was a disastrous step and has made it

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harder for this region to go in and win the inward investment we need.

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Well I'm not here to defend the record of the Tory Government. You

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said we did nothing. Of the Tory Governments in the 1980s and 1990s.

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I agree of much of what you intad that. I have to say to have a Labour

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spokesman coming on and talking about the economy without

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recognising the mess your party made of the economy, without

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recognising... APPLAUSE AND BOOS Recognising the way the financial

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system collapsed because of the lack of regulation under Gordon Brown,

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the way in which Labour was running a structural deficit before the

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crisis. I think a simple apology. You can write it down if you don't

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want to say it. Can I just say, there is nothing

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more annoying to someone outside the political loop to hearing

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politicians continually blaming the ones who came before.

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APPLAUSE Surely there has to be some kind of

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statute of limitations on a big boy did it and ran away.

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The one thing Danny won't admit is he inherited a growing economy from

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us and his Government put it back into recession. Let's take Val's

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advice and not fight the battles that are over and look ahead to the

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problems that this part of the world is now facing. There is a hand up

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there. I don't see who it is attached to. The man there.

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If you are on about HS2. Why not start it at the north and go down?

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Are you going to say you are going to do that? One of the things David

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Higgins was saying in his report this week was we should get the

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northern section going more quickly. That we should get a new hub in

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Crewe, to be opening at the same time as the Birmingham link opens,

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to get economic benefits to this part of the country more quickly.

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That must be right. The other thing he was saying and Andy is right

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about this, is that it is important to use HS2. It is not just about

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connecting Manchester or Birmingham to London. It is actually about

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getting connections between northern cities quicker, more effective.

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Speeding up a transport system and infrastructure system in the north.

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I am a backbencher, I understand the fors and against it, I think we need

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to make it work. I'm not clear if Labour are sitting on the fence. Are

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you foreor against this major infrastructure project there to

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boost the economy as a whole but also particularly the north? Jtsds

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give me a better plan for the people of Warrington, for the people in

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Liverpool? You haven't done that. He wanted to go - Give me a better

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plan. That is what David Higgins said. It's not good enough to sit on

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the fence. The North doesn't end here. I have lived in

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Northumberland. When you say LS2 is going to the North they say, no it's

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going to Manchester. They don't think that's the North. All right.

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There is a whole chunk of the country north of here. Hello,

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trains! We will move onto another aspect of this Budget. Hang on.

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Another aspect of this Budget. Remember, you can join in this

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debate right now, texting or Twitter.

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this is another aspect of the Budget, before we leave the Budget.

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Catherine Whitley, please. Is the Chancellor right to trust pensioners

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not to blow their pension pot, or will they spend it on booze, Bingo

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and buy-to-let? APPLAUSE

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Booze, bingo and buy-to-let. Booze and bingo is a sore point with you,

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Danny Alexander, you said its with a grass grass the way the Tories

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published it. I thought it was a spoof? The Chancellor right to

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pensioners not to blow their pension? We can trust pensioners to

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use their money that they have saved for their whole lives for their own

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retirement responsibly to make the best choices for themselves.

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Particularly now, that we've cleared away the bureaucracy of means

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testing thats with a big part of the pension system until recently. We

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are moving to a situation from 2016 where we have a single-tier pension.

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The level of the basic state pension will on its own lift people out of

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the means testing process. A strong platform for people to save on.

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There is a basic level of support which means people will not fall

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back on the state additionally. It's right to say, if you have saved all

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your life. Put money aside, you should have flexibility to choose

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how you use to to benefit yourself rather than being constrained to

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annuity which have been criticised as not offering the best value for

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me. It's absolutely right to trust the people to make the right

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decisions for themselves. Do you agree? The temptation will be there

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for people to spend it on something else. Do you think that matters?

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Probably not, no. A major change this, isn't it? Before we were told

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what to do with our pensions we are free to do what we want. People

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should be trusted with their own money, money they saved. The theory

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if people know they have more freedom when they get to retirement

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they are more inclined to feel to save for it. The principle is

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obviously a good one. I think, we should bear in mind that the reason

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why annuities are so appalling unremowntive at the moment is

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because of Government policy and QE saversers have had a desperately

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hard time this policy is something that will possibly make life a

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little bit better. It doesn't go very far. All the people... All

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those pensioners who have already retired, and are stuck with the

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annuities they have got, will get no comfort for this. So, you know, it's

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not all Rosie in the pensioners' garden because of this

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liberalisation. In principle, it is a good move. A good thing. Do you

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think it's a good thin, sir? I think if a pensioner is lucky enough and

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intelligent enough to save money for their retirement, they are

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intelligent enough to spend it. The real question is, will Andy Burnham

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rebell if he doesn't get his station at Leigh like he said at a public

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meeting? Sorry? What you do you mean - will he rebell? He said if he

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didn't get a public station? I'm driving a hard bargain. I want a

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station. Will you rebell? I will wait to see what the plan is. Did

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you say you would rebell? We were talking about pensions. You answer

:19:17.:19:19.

him? It's in the the next parliament we don't have a plan yet. Will you

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rebell? Is answer the question. I said to the Government we need

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changes. David Higgins said there will be changes to the northern

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section. Will you rebell, you know you won't get a on... He will not

:19:38.:19:46.

answer. Let's move on. Well tried, sir. Well trierd! Up there. As an

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addition to the question that the lady asked about the changes in

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pensions. Yes. Does the panel believe that this could just be a

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cynical way of the Government raising billions in tax revenue?

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What do you think? I think this whole conversation about what we

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will do with our ill-gotten gains or our hard saved money is a diversion.

:20:15.:20:18.

Yesterday's Budget, for me, was a very good Budget. I have a

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pensioners pot, ISA and premium bonds. It was a Budget for people

:20:24.:20:27.

who have. I don't like paying my taxes any more than anybody else. My

:20:28.:20:32.

tax bill drops into my inbox my heart sinks. I pay the taxes, it's

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the cost you pay for living in a civilised society. A civilised

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society is how we take care of people who don't have.

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APPLAUSE All this conversation about will we

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spend our pension pots On holidays or pay off our mortgages or be

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sensible or invest it? It's a diversion from what is ailing this

:20:58.:21:01.

country at the moment, the tight, tight budgets that so many of our

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people are living on. Not just pensioners, people across the board.

:21:05.:21:07.

Young people who have been betrayed by the promises made to them. Who

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have gone off to university got degrees, run up huge amount of debts

:21:14.:21:17.

and pushing a trolley up-and-down a train because there aren't graduate

:21:18.:21:21.

jobs for them. That upsets me that I care about. Yesterday's Budget was

:21:22.:21:26.

for the haves, can we think of the people who are not served by the

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Budget, who are not the haves? APPLAUSE

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The first and most important thing, if you are the most vulnerable in

:21:38.:21:42.

our society, the unemployed, creating new jobs, 1.7 million jobs

:21:43.:21:47.

in the private-sector is critical. It's for the economically most

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vulnerable. I would also point out that if you're... The changes we are

:21:52.:21:55.

making, some have been difficult, from my own experience some people

:21:56.:21:58.

are struggling with the cost of the living. The raw fact of the matter

:21:59.:22:04.

is elderly poverty, child poverty, fuel poverty, inequality, believe it

:22:05.:22:09.

or not, under the statistics, the objective statistics is lower now

:22:10.:22:12.

than it was under Labour. I want to pick up on the point about savings.

:22:13.:22:16.

We all talk about Government spending and Government debt,

:22:17.:22:21.

household debt, private debt in this country, is bigger as a proportion

:22:22.:22:26.

of GDP than Government debt. There are measures to encourage saving.

:22:27.:22:30.

From a pensioner bond to scrapping the 1 o 0p rate of saving for low

:22:31.:22:35.

earners. That is incredibly important. Saving is one of the

:22:36.:22:39.

economic virtures in the economy. When you get to the end and worked

:22:40.:22:42.

hard and saved, of course people should be able to have the freedom

:22:43.:22:45.

to spend that money how they want to. The idea that we suddenly jump

:22:46.:22:50.

in and boss them around at that stage and have rigidity and they can

:22:51.:22:59.

only go down the the annuity route is crazy. The man there. I would

:23:00.:23:03.

like to raise the point that the Budget provided nothing for young

:23:04.:23:07.

people at all. The legacy of this Government will be a lost

:23:08.:23:12.

generation. We -- the first thing this Tory-led Government was cut

:23:13.:23:15.

youth and career services. You burnt the bridge for young people getting

:23:16.:23:18.

into employment straightaway with that. I keep on hearing tonight that

:23:19.:23:25.

the economy is in recovery. Can you tell me, why the rise for food banks

:23:26.:23:27.

is just so high? Answer the food banks first before

:23:28.:23:39.

we forget and his point about young people. We are seeing an increase in

:23:40.:23:45.

food banks in a range of developing countries, in Germany, in Canada, in

:23:46.:23:50.

those countries... Always someone else... You are seeing greater use

:23:51.:23:54.

of food banks. Of course, there are people who are having to rely on

:23:55.:23:59.

food banks. That is for a whole range - a whole number of people are

:24:00.:24:05.

relaying on food banks. Because their benefits are delayed or they

:24:06.:24:08.

are out of work. A range of circumstances. We are working so

:24:09.:24:12.

hard to create more jobs in this country. The answer to the point of

:24:13.:24:15.

the young man at the back about young people there, a number of

:24:16.:24:20.

things. Firstly, creating jobs in this country, 1.6 million jobs

:24:21.:24:26.

created since 2010, expansion in apprenticeships there are a bigger

:24:27.:24:29.

range of options for young people to get the skills and employment they

:24:30.:24:32.

need. Taking away national insurance from employers who employ Under-21s

:24:33.:24:36.

to make it more attractive for employers to take on young people to

:24:37.:24:39.

work. Cutting income tax for people who pay tax at the basic rate,

:24:40.:24:45.

lifting the tax threshold to ?10,500. Tax cut to ?800 to 25

:24:46.:24:51.

million working in this country, it's helping to make work pay

:24:52.:24:55.

better, particularly for people on low paid work. There is a lot in

:24:56.:24:58.

this Budget to answer the question that you raised, sir. There there

:24:59.:25:05.

you are. Andy Burnham what do you say, he has the answers? To listen

:25:06.:25:08.

to the Chancellor yesterday and to Danny now, you would think the

:25:09.:25:12.

biggest problem we have is where we invest our spare cash we have left

:25:13.:25:17.

over, the savings we have got. They didn't...

:25:18.:25:20.

APPLAUSE They didn't mention the cost of

:25:21.:25:23.

living once. The Chancellor didn't mention it. It doesn't appear in the

:25:24.:25:26.

Budget statement. The biggest problem we have, is people keeping

:25:27.:25:31.

their heads above water, isn't it? Making the ends meet and feeding the

:25:32.:25:35.

kids. That is happening now. This Budget was silent on that. Nothing

:25:36.:25:39.

to say to the 900,000 young people who can't find a job. Nothing to say

:25:40.:25:44.

to the proud people reduced to using food banks. That's not true. Mothers

:25:45.:25:50.

coming in with health problems and they're feeding their children. They

:25:51.:25:55.

have not ate for three days. They have nothing to say on these issues.

:25:56.:25:59.

Nothing at all. The thing I want to finish off by saying, this is the

:26:00.:26:04.

week when Oxfam said that five families in this country have have

:26:05.:26:09.

more wealth between them than the bottom 20%. The IFS said today that

:26:10.:26:14.

the people hardest hit by all of their budgets, outside of the top

:26:15.:26:20.

10% are the bottom 10%. That is outrageous. This is what you get.

:26:21.:26:26.

APPLAUSE When you get budgets written by, as

:26:27.:26:30.

Michael Gove said, public schoolboys. Public schoolboys have

:26:31.:26:35.

no idea what life is like for ordinary people in Warrington and

:26:36.:26:40.

elsewhere. APPLAUSE

:26:41.:26:42.

A class matter? When we get on to Eton we know there is nothing of

:26:43.:26:45.

substance coming from the Labour Party. Michael Gove said it! Michael

:26:46.:26:52.

Gove said it. Can I answer the lady's question. I opened a food

:26:53.:26:57.

bank which is a well off village in one of the most affluent parts of

:26:58.:27:00.

the country. Cost of living is affecting everyone across the

:27:01.:27:06.

country. The Trussell Trust is the nation co-ordinator, number one

:27:07.:27:10.

co-ordinator for the food banks, they say the two biggest causes are

:27:11.:27:14.

global food prices and energy prices. There isn't a huge amount we

:27:15.:27:19.

can do about global markets. There something you can do. In this

:27:20.:27:24.

country, about ?400 goes on the average families annual food bill

:27:25.:27:31.

from agriculture subsidies. We want to reform the policy in the EU. On

:27:32.:27:38.

energy, we have to to be energy self sufficient. Andy needs to explain

:27:39.:27:42.

why they closed down seven nuclear powerser stations one of the reasons

:27:43.:27:46.

why we have such energy prices now. There are specific reasons why we

:27:47.:27:50.

have this problem with food banks. Politicians shouldn't get off the

:27:51.:27:53.

hook that easy. What are you going to po it? I want to move on. We have

:27:54.:27:59.

a lot more questions to come. I don't want the moment to pass

:28:00.:28:02.

without drawing your attention, in case you missed it, to Ed Balls new

:28:03.:28:09.

uf missism for death when he was talking about pensions. He said,

:28:10.:28:15.

when retirement comes to an end. Did you hear him say this? I didn't hear

:28:16.:28:19.

it. When retirement comes to an end. That is what happens now. We will

:28:20.:28:23.

break away entirely from this. It may come up in some other form. This

:28:24.:28:29.

is from Susan Wright, please. Are we witnessing the dawn of a new cold

:28:30.:28:32.

war with Russia as a result of imposing sanctions against them? It

:28:33.:28:37.

a new cold war we are facing with Russia? Yes. I think we might go

:28:38.:28:42.

further back than that. I think actually everyone has been rather

:28:43.:28:45.

brought up short by the fact that things that used to happen and used

:28:46.:28:50.

to provoke wars, going back some way now, can happen again, countries can

:28:51.:28:54.

annex another country. Russia can move in on the Crimea there is

:28:55.:28:58.

nothing very much that the US or the EU can do about it. We are left

:28:59.:29:03.

looking rather empty in our rhetoric and Putin is clearly away there is

:29:04.:29:08.

nothing very much we can do to follow-through. Do you say there is

:29:09.:29:12.

nothing we can do? If we have a sanctions war with them it won't do

:29:13.:29:17.

Russia any more harm with them than the rest of us. The Europe is

:29:18.:29:24.

terrifiified because countries are dependant on energy. Cyprus and

:29:25.:29:28.

Greece are dependant on Russian money am. They bought a lot of their

:29:29.:29:31.

debt. We don't have any prospect I think of having any kind of combined

:29:32.:29:36.

EU policy on how to deal with this. I don't think we will be able to do

:29:37.:29:40.

very much about it. I think it's a reflection of a long period of

:29:41.:29:45.

rather empty foreign policy in this country and indeed the Obama

:29:46.:29:48.

approach to foreign polling Sid, which is to talk big, but have very

:29:49.:29:54.

limited ability to do anything about it. We needed to think about these

:29:55.:29:57.

things when we have our defence reviews rather than just assume we

:29:58.:30:01.

don't have kind old fashioned war any more. We have to wonder whether

:30:02.:30:07.

it might be possible for Russia to expand its ambitions further and

:30:08.:30:12.

being complacent in assuming by forbidding someone to come to the G8

:30:13.:30:15.

that will be enough toll halt Putin's advance. I don't think it

:30:16.:30:18.

is. We need to really reassess what is we have been doing and the

:30:19.:30:23.

signals we have been giving in our foreign policy by threatening to get

:30:24.:30:26.

involved in Syria, but knowing we can't. Backing off. Putin saw that

:30:27.:30:31.

and he drew his own conclusions. No, I think it's potentially very

:30:32.:30:36.

serious, I think it should be a very sharp reminder to the US, to the EU

:30:37.:30:41.

in particular and to Britain that to go grandstanding on a world stage,

:30:42.:30:44.

when you have no ability to follow-through, very limited

:30:45.:30:47.

capacity to do anything about it, is perhaps not wise. Indeed, could be

:30:48.:30:50.

quite destabilising. Thank you. The former Conservative Foreign

:30:51.:31:02.

Secretary said that the EU's reaction was pathetic and feeble. Do

:31:03.:31:07.

you agree with that? Do you think the Government and the EU are doing

:31:08.:31:13.

the right thing? They are very limited options. One of the things,

:31:14.:31:16.

something we should not be doing, is going down a knee-jerk reaction of

:31:17.:31:20.

saying it is the Cold War all over again. I think it is much more

:31:21.:31:23.

complicated. I think the Joe yoe politics are more complicated. I

:31:24.:31:28.

think part is a hangover from the Soviet system where the Russians put

:31:29.:31:37.

their own level of people into all the Soviet republics to run them for

:31:38.:31:42.

mother Russia. Those people got left behind. Those people are now under

:31:43.:31:47.

pressure culturally, where they got left behind. This is them saying to

:31:48.:31:55.

Putin, you are the strongman, do something. I don't think it is a

:31:56.:31:59.

land grab, we have to find a different way of approaching this. I

:32:00.:32:02.

am not a politician. I don't know the answers. It is more than saying,

:32:03.:32:07.

let's do these sanctions. Maybe the way we resolved the Balkans might

:32:08.:32:10.

show us a different way of coming at this, although I'm not sure what it

:32:11.:32:15.

would be? Kosovo? Maybe not that one.

:32:16.:32:20.

Well I do think it is pathetic and feeble and I think if the UK

:32:21.:32:23.

Government don't intervene, it is going to have a destabilising impact

:32:24.:32:30.

in the Balkans. I served 22 years and this is' what I believed. What

:32:31.:32:35.

would you do? I think Val is right. It is more complicated than going

:32:36.:32:40.

back to the gold war. It seems to me Putin is trying to have it both

:32:41.:32:43.

ways. He wants to strut the world stage at the Sochi games, getting

:32:44.:32:47.

the respect, supposedly of the international community for hosting

:32:48.:32:51.

that, and days later, wants to invade the Sovereign territory of a

:32:52.:32:55.

neighbouring country. He can't have it both ways. I think he is trying

:32:56.:32:59.

to call everyone's bluff. He is saying - take May on if you dare. I

:33:00.:33:03.

think, you know, I welcome what Obama has said today. I think the

:33:04.:33:08.

Obama foreign policy is a big improvement, actually on his

:33:09.:33:12.

predecessor and he isp toughening the rhetoric. -- he is. I would say

:33:13.:33:20.

- we had the Sochi Winter Olympics, 2018 we are supposedly all going to

:33:21.:33:24.

the World Cup in Russia. Now, are we comfortable with that idea? Let's do

:33:25.:33:27.

something that the ordinary Russian on the street will understand. I

:33:28.:33:31.

can't see how we should all now just say... You think cancelling the

:33:32.:33:36.

World Cup will make a difference? I'm just saying, on every level we

:33:37.:33:40.

have to send a different message and we have to be prepared to take him

:33:41.:33:45.

on. I would say it is FIFA's decision but they need to revisit

:33:46.:33:50.

that. He can not pretend he is part of the club, strutting the world

:33:51.:33:53.

stage and taking steps like this, that are fundamentally in violation

:33:54.:33:58.

of international law. We are part of NATO. NATO was set up to stop

:33:59.:34:02.

Russian expansionism. I have not heard NATO mentioned by any

:34:03.:34:05.

politicians was wrefr. We want it seem to use economic sanctions. --

:34:06.:34:11.

bhasever If we -- whatsoever. If we pulled together as NATO and invited

:34:12.:34:16.

Ukraine to join us, Russia would stop.

:34:17.:34:20.

Danny Alexander, Just wait a second, you don't have a microphone.

:34:21.:34:26.

I would say this is an incredibly serious situation, because what you

:34:27.:34:29.

are saying s a violation of international law, the sort that we

:34:30.:34:34.

haven't seen for many decades in our hinterland in Europe. One country

:34:35.:34:40.

invading, annexing a piece of territory from another Sovereign

:34:41.:34:44.

state is a serious thing. This isn't some far away country where we can

:34:45.:34:49.

just stand idly by. We have to make sure we speak with one voice in

:34:50.:34:53.

yumplt it is, of course, difficult sometimes because we have 28

:34:54.:34:55.

different countries to pull together. -- in Europe. But we as

:34:56.:34:59.

Britain as lone do not have the influence by ourselves to thing

:35:00.:35:04.

this, but the European Union is Russia's major trading partner. A

:35:05.:35:08.

major customer for energy industry. I think the sanctions the Americans

:35:09.:35:12.

have put in place, the further saengess is very well. There is a

:35:13.:35:15.

European summit going on at the moment. -- further sanctions. What

:35:16.:35:19.

would you like to see Europe do? At the moment, the reaction from Moscow

:35:20.:35:25.

is to street them as a joke. A cause of irony and sarcasm.

:35:26.:35:31.

Putin's advisor said the only thing that interested him about America is

:35:32.:35:37.

Ginsberg and Jackson Pollock. Well, I don't know about that but what is

:35:38.:35:43.

on the agenda at the European Council tonight and tomorrow is a

:35:44.:35:48.

stiffening of sanctions, more embarrows against people and asset

:35:49.:35:54.

freezes. To take on Jill's point we have to potentially move to

:35:55.:35:59.

targeting the economic area. Russia's economy is heavily

:36:00.:36:03.

dependent on exports and so on. If we move to the next stage when

:36:04.:36:08.

sanctions haven't been effective, we need to move to more targeted and

:36:09.:36:12.

economic trade issues that. Might hurt us but it'll hurt the Russians

:36:13.:36:17.

more, and will send a strong message that what they are doing, violating

:36:18.:36:22.

international law, is not acceptable. Do you think Europe can

:36:23.:36:26.

agree on a common policy? There are 28 different interests. Doesn't it

:36:27.:36:29.

demonstrate the limitations of trying to work with Europe and have

:36:30.:36:33.

a common policy? The opposite. I think you are Europe has a strong

:36:34.:36:35.

common interest in the rule of international law. We cannot say

:36:36.:36:38.

international law stops at the boundaries of the European Union.

:36:39.:36:41.

That would be to go back to a 19th century way of looking at T Does

:36:42.:36:46.

that mean a European Defence Force will move in? ? We have to work hard

:36:47.:36:51.

to get agreement. That's what we are doing today. Seeing strong signals

:36:52.:36:56.

from the Germans, frechl and so on, that we are killing to move to the

:36:57.:36:59.

next stage. -- French. We have agreed at a European level a staged

:37:00.:37:02.

approach, escalating sanctions and we need to make sure we

:37:03.:37:05.

follow-through. Do you see it, as the way the questioner is asking,

:37:06.:37:12.

the dawn of a new Cold War? I agree with Val. I don't think you can

:37:13.:37:16.

express it as is employsically as that. But I think it is one of the

:37:17.:37:20.

biggest challenges for the framework of international law and regulation

:37:21.:37:26.

that we have seen. -- simplistically. We don't know if

:37:27.:37:33.

Putin is doing this domestically. He is weak at home. I agree with

:37:34.:37:38.

Malcolm Rifkind, the I's response has been sof riffic at best and not

:37:39.:37:44.

nearly with enough teeth. I think we should be kicking them out of the G8

:37:45.:37:48.

and the Council of Europe or suspend them and the sapgss should be

:37:49.:37:53.

tougher with the threat, a week ago of trade sanctions. -- and the

:37:54.:37:56.

sanctions should be tougher. We need to know how to get out of this and

:37:57.:38:02.

not into it. Russia has a point about Ukraine, if you look at

:38:03.:38:04.

Finland and neutrality that should be on the table to assuage the

:38:05.:38:10.

legitimate concerns and you can look at the illegitimate ones. The young

:38:11.:38:14.

lady here is saying the interim government is Ukraine is not the

:38:15.:38:18.

most enlightened. You put it a different way. Not the most

:38:19.:38:22.

enlighten enlightened bunch of leaders.

:38:23.:38:29.

So they have to be pushed to reach compromise and Putin knows there is

:38:30.:38:34.

a price to pay and a clear mix of carrots and sticks for the steps he

:38:35.:38:38.

needs to take next. The woman behind? They are talking about Putin

:38:39.:38:43.

and Russia trespassing into the Ukraine and Crimea but the people of

:38:44.:38:47.

Crimea actually asked for his help. Their leader went to Russia for help

:38:48.:38:51.

and the people of Crimea wanted to go to Russia. The same as the people

:38:52.:38:56.

of the Falklands wanted to stay part of Britain rather than Argentina.

:38:57.:39:01.

Who are we to butt in and tell them how to do things? Rather than token

:39:02.:39:08.

gestures around sporting veents or other international events like that

:39:09.:39:13.

-- events - I find myself agreeing with Danny Alexander, there has to

:39:14.:39:16.

be enforceable, diplomatic economic sanctions. Ironically, Russian's own

:39:17.:39:23.

sanctions, regarding energy, would damage what slr a Frank tile

:39:24.:39:27.

economy. They may end up shooting themselves in the foot. -- would

:39:28.:39:31.

damage what is already a fragile economy.

:39:32.:39:33.

Would you like to pick up that point, about the overwhelming wish

:39:34.:39:38.

of the people of Crimea? You have to be careful to treat in anyway

:39:39.:39:51.

legitimate or serious, to take a referendum that was organised it at

:39:52.:39:54.

the point of a gun in 11 days. Do you dispute what Putin says, 82%

:39:55.:39:59.

voted and 96% voted in favour I think there is no evidence it was a

:40:00.:40:03.

referendum conducted in a free and fair way. Therefore, I don't think

:40:04.:40:07.

you can take that argument seriously, otherwise you would say -

:40:08.:40:12.

any country can run into some other country, organise a trumped-up

:40:13.:40:16.

referendum with a few days' notice and say they are being invited in.

:40:17.:40:24.

But Ukraine don't conduct their own affairs that well. The point about

:40:25.:40:30.

NATO. If Ukraine joined NATO that would be disastrous. Where are the

:40:31.:40:34.

UN? Ban Ki-Moon making a token appearance in Russia, a farce. Why

:40:35.:40:39.

weren't they there three weeks ago when a democratically-elected

:40:40.:40:43.

government in Ukraine were overthrown by a main or the? I will

:40:44.:40:47.

move on. Thank you to the audience for their contributions. I will go

:40:48.:40:57.

on to Naomi Capper. With teachers now working an average

:40:58.:41:02.

of almost 60 hours per week and only one-third of those spent actually

:41:03.:41:07.

teaching children, can the panel understand why many no longer wish

:41:08.:41:11.

to remain in the profession? You are a teacher. Do you want to leave? I,

:41:12.:41:20.

like many teachers, I love my job. I I'm very privileged to do my job. I

:41:21.:41:26.

spend the majority of my time with the children, watching them grow,

:41:27.:41:30.

nurturing them and I see a lot of things that their parents don't see.

:41:31.:41:37.

But Your problem is that of the 60 hours... The 60 hours... That most

:41:38.:41:43.

of the time is not spent teaching. It is form-filling, ticking boxes.

:41:44.:41:51.

Analysing data. Getting ready for it change after change after change.

:41:52.:41:54.

Danny Alexander, is that the position? Well, I think that most

:41:55.:42:01.

teachers are lake you - that I know, they are utterly dedicated

:42:02.:42:05.

professionals, who want to see the children in their classes doing as

:42:06.:42:10.

well as possible and work incredibly thoord do that. I pay credit do you

:42:11.:42:14.

and your colleagues for what you do. - in incredibly hard to do that.

:42:15.:42:19.

There is a problem about too much bureaucracy and rules in the

:42:20.:42:21.

classroom which you have drawn attention to. That's why we are

:42:22.:42:25.

trying to give more fliblingts and freedom to headteachers. -- more

:42:26.:42:28.

flexibility. To make sure the school is organised in the right way. Why

:42:29.:42:32.

we have put more money into schools through the pupil premium. Michael

:42:33.:42:37.

Gove has had four years to get rid of the things that are complained

:42:38.:42:41.

about. Form-filling, the most common reason given for the hours that they

:42:42.:42:46.

work. Michael Gove strikes me as the kind of person who would object to

:42:47.:42:50.

that And there is more to be done. The point I was going to make is we

:42:51.:42:53.

are also trying to make sure that every child leaves school with the

:42:54.:42:56.

best-possible skills and education to get on in life. One assumes that.

:42:57.:43:04.

That's why we are skewing reforces more towards kids from the most

:43:05.:43:08.

disadvantaged backgrounds because over decades we have seen far too

:43:09.:43:12.

many children leaving school. You are not answering the question. I

:43:13.:43:16.

am. I'm talking about how resources going into schools are skewed

:43:17.:43:21.

towards enabling teachers like Naomi to do what they want to do, to

:43:22.:43:27.

devote to the kids... Why are they spending 40 hours form-filling and

:43:28.:43:32.

only 20... I don't know if the survey is accurate? Well, it is a

:43:33.:43:38.

Department of Education survey of primary schools. I maybe wrong.

:43:39.:43:44.

Michael Gove might have actually got the survey wrong. I have not seen

:43:45.:43:48.

the details of the survey. I will not go into the detail. I'm saying

:43:49.:43:52.

we are trying to make sure teachers have more time to spend,

:43:53.:43:55.

particularly with the kids who need the help most. Jill Kirby? I think

:43:56.:43:59.

it demonstrates how very hard the Government needs to work to try to

:44:00.:44:03.

row Bakke on some of the form-filling that has accrued over

:44:04.:44:08.

the many years. -- row back. We couldn't trust people to do things

:44:09.:44:11.

and everything had to be established in wrieteding. I think Michael Gove

:44:12.:44:15.

have made moves in the right direction by giving more

:44:16.:44:17.

independence to schools. But actually the coalition for a

:44:18.:44:21.

Liberal-Conservative organisation, which ought to be more liberalising,

:44:22.:44:27.

has been frightened about getting rid of CRB checks and databases

:44:28.:44:33.

without which nobody is trust to do anything, so amongst not only

:44:34.:44:37.

teachers but social workers and public servants, the compulsion to -

:44:38.:44:45.

write it down and have forms to fill in about somebody's rediness before

:44:46.:44:50.

you hand them on to a preschoof school to primary school, has driven

:44:51.:44:55.

many good early years workers away from the profession. I think Michael

:44:56.:45:03.

Gove has been trying to work in that direction but there is still a lot

:45:04.:45:07.

of paper work going on in the early years. We must become, as a nation,

:45:08.:45:12.

less reliant on having everything written down and on a day tie base

:45:13.:45:17.

and less willing to let people trust each other and form an understanding

:45:18.:45:21.

of a child's needs and use their common sense rather than have having

:45:22.:45:24.

tab lighted and everything to pass a set of regulations.

:45:25.:45:32.

On form-filling and when the Conservatives came in last time,

:45:33.:45:39.

they introduced form-filling in hospices. A dedicated nurse, a very

:45:40.:45:45.

good friend of our, who dedicated nine/ten years of her life looking

:45:46.:45:50.

after patients that will not be there much longer was told, if you

:45:51.:45:56.

don't fill that paperwork out. You have lost your job. Andy Burnham was

:45:57.:46:00.

Health Secretary under Labour, what do you make - not perhaps that

:46:01.:46:07.

point, the education point and the general principle of filling in

:46:08.:46:11.

forms. It happens at the BBC? I will not say there wasn't frustrations

:46:12.:46:15.

when we were in Government. The big point I make, I recognise the

:46:16.:46:18.

disillusionment you are speaking of. My brother is a secondary school

:46:19.:46:24.

teacher here in Warrington. An excellent school Birchwood High

:46:25.:46:31.

School, he feels disill Lewesed he has seen affects of the Michael Gove

:46:32.:46:35.

reforms on the ground. They are soul destroying. A free school arrived

:46:36.:46:42.

even though there were ur surplus places in Warrington. That

:46:43.:46:46.

destabilised - All school results have improved under Michael Gove's

:46:47.:46:49.

regime. Have you to acknowledge that children who were making poor

:46:50.:46:54.

headway are making better progress. So I think to ignore that, Andy,

:46:55.:46:59.

claim everything was good before mg got busy is to misrepresent the

:47:00.:47:05.

situation. Mitt My point was, I don't think they understand actually

:47:06.:47:08.

how good some of the state schools there are in places like Warrington

:47:09.:47:15.

and, I want to make this point, what we had here is a Secretary of State

:47:16.:47:20.

who came in, testing for phonics in primary schools. It was about the

:47:21.:47:25.

English Baccalaureate prescribing what subjects were acceptable and

:47:26.:47:30.

those were not. It has been an elitist agenda. Kids not taking the

:47:31.:47:33.

English Baccalaureate subjects have been pushed to one side. The Michael

:47:34.:47:37.

Gove agenda to me, for me, is about some children in some schools, not

:47:38.:47:40.

all children and all schools. That, for me, is why it's fundamentally

:47:41.:47:44.

flawed. Let us go back to the question. The question is about the

:47:45.:47:49.

burden on teaching. I go back to the questioner? Speaking on behalf of

:47:50.:47:53.

schools, I would say that I think Michael Gove has lost sight that the

:47:54.:47:59.

most important resources are -- a school has are the children in the

:48:00.:48:05.

school, enthusiastic teachers who aren't completely exhaust and the

:48:06.:48:08.

support of the families of the children in the school. It doesn't

:48:09.:48:13.

necessarily come to money, it comes down to people who have the energy

:48:14.:48:19.

to do the job properly. You think it's the bureaucracy that is zapping

:48:20.:48:22.

the energy? I have been a teacher for 10 years, now that I have my own

:48:23.:48:28.

family I feel that I can't be an effective parent and an effective

:48:29.:48:32.

full-time teacher. I can't see myself doing this at 60 or 65. The

:48:33.:48:38.

man in the pink shirt up there, then I will come to you. Do you think we

:48:39.:48:43.

should go back to educating children instead of forming committees and

:48:44.:48:49.

so-called experts and filling forms in, like it was in my day? When we

:48:50.:48:55.

went to school and we were educated. Now they are all filling forms in

:48:56.:49:04.

for hours on end? Dominic. I sit on the Education Committee in the House

:49:05.:49:07.

of Commons that scrutinises policy. The key thing here is that we know

:49:08.:49:15.

that on the international rankings that notwithstanding the money that

:49:16.:49:19.

went in under Labour, 15-year-olds plummeted on the rankses for

:49:20.:49:23.

numeracy literacy and science. The key is good teaching. Aunderstand

:49:24.:49:27.

the frustrations with red tape that has been expressed. We are trying to

:49:28.:49:32.

bring in reforms like performance-related play to

:49:33.:49:36.

encourage teachers and make them feel properly rewarded. Can I finish

:49:37.:49:42.

the point. Don't teach for the excellent wages. You should know

:49:43.:49:51.

that! -- teachers don't teach for the excellent wages. You should know

:49:52.:49:54.

that! It's not all about the money. We know that. The international

:49:55.:49:58.

evidence. We had the Head of the OECD education guy come, in the key

:49:59.:50:03.

is to great teaching is a better structure for the profession.

:50:04.:50:06.

Greater autonomy in schools. That is what the free school and the academy

:50:07.:50:10.

programme is about. He was firm about this, very rigorous

:50:11.:50:13.

inspections. All of these things we are trying to introduce to boost the

:50:14.:50:18.

standards of teaching. We equip our young people with the skills they

:50:19.:50:21.

need to make the best of themselves and the economy. You end up with 20

:50:22.:50:27.

hours teaching out of 60 hours working as a teach sner I accept the

:50:28.:50:31.

point you don't want unnecessary form-filling, you want greater atomy

:50:32.:50:34.

along with those inspections. That is the formula. The person in the

:50:35.:50:39.

blue shirt there. Then you, sir. I have been teaching for 20 years,

:50:40.:50:43.

politics must just come out of education. I don't -- heaven knows

:50:44.:50:49.

how many Education Secretaries have come and go. They want to promote

:50:50.:50:53.

their careers, they have to bring in a new idea each time. As teachers we

:50:54.:50:58.

have to deal with those ideas. You are cynical about Secretary of State

:50:59.:51:05.

for Education? Yes, just let teachers teach. That is all we want.

:51:06.:51:09.

APPLAUSE Let teachers teach. We just went to

:51:10.:51:12.

school and got taught? That is what I was about to say, your point

:51:13.:51:16.

there. People who have the gift for teaching do not necessarily have a

:51:17.:51:19.

gift for administration. People who have a gift for administration do

:51:20.:51:24.

not necessarily have a gift for teaching in the classroom. Why is it

:51:25.:51:28.

we expect people to have a skill for it teaching to have the skill for

:51:29.:51:31.

administration. Why can't we separate the functions. Some

:51:32.:51:33.

administration is necessary. Give that to people who like filling in

:51:34.:51:38.

forms and doing assessments, let the teachers who can teach, who have a

:51:39.:51:41.

gift for dealing with pupils in the classroom, let them teach and do

:51:42.:51:45.

what they are best at. You get the best results out of people when they

:51:46.:51:48.

can examiner countries their talents and skills to the maximum. A very

:51:49.:51:52.

brief point. I want to gate last question in. That is a really

:51:53.:51:57.

important point. There is a contradiction. Michael Gove is

:51:58.:52:00.

piling bureaucracy on some schools, but to free schools he is saying,

:52:01.:52:04.

can you employ unqualified teachers and opt-out of the national

:52:05.:52:07.

consider. That doesn't seem to be right to me. There is a

:52:08.:52:09.

contradiction of the heart of education. Are you U turning on the

:52:10.:52:22.

U-turn now? The point says we should idealise the past of our education

:52:23.:52:27.

isn't right. We shouldn't be saying things were better 20, 30, 4 o 0

:52:28.:52:32.

years ago, we should look at what other countries around the world are

:52:33.:52:35.

doing. If you look at the education system in European countries and

:52:36.:52:39.

south Korea, teaching people more languages than we teach in this

:52:40.:52:42.

country. Teaching - You said would you make a quick point. You have

:52:43.:52:49.

made it. Thank you very much. James Waring. Is it time the BBC reviewed

:52:50.:52:56.

its licence policy as suggested this week by Noel Noel Edmonds. Said the

:52:57.:53:00.

licence fee is no longer appropriate. He wants to buy the

:53:01.:53:03.

BBC. I don't know where he would get the money from that. Licence fee? I

:53:04.:53:10.

think with the move towards taking more of those services online, I

:53:11.:53:15.

think there is an inherent problem. I think inevitably over the

:53:16.:53:20.

long-term they will have to move to a subscription model. With the BBC

:53:21.:53:26.

you still have a public subsidy to fill that public... That sort of

:53:27.:53:29.

quality television and radio gap that otherwise you wouldn't get in

:53:30.:53:32.

the marketplace. I still think there is a need for that and an important

:53:33.:53:37.

case for protecting it. The BBC, like everyone else, has to move with

:53:38.:53:40.

the times. How quickly it will happen, how contentious it will be,

:53:41.:53:44.

I'm not sure. I think it's almost inevitable. You, sir, up there. I

:53:45.:53:51.

work abroad. I watch occasionally BBC World Service, there is Toye

:53:52.:53:57.

advertising on that season. -- advertising on that season. If the

:53:58.:54:02.

BBC isn't supposed to advertise, why is it advertising on its Worldsome

:54:03.:54:07.

service? It doesn't go to the licence payer, that is why. Oh. They

:54:08.:54:13.

are allowed to flog the product. It's the BBC? Yes it is. Should the

:54:14.:54:20.

licence fee end? We should move to the subscription model and a slimmed

:54:21.:54:24.

down version of the BBC. Keeping Question Time, obviously! Very

:54:25.:54:29.

necessary. Can you all applaud this.

:54:30.:54:34.

Plagues Thank you. Very significant point.

:54:35.:54:40.

When you look at things only the BBC can do and the stuff that the BBC

:54:41.:54:44.

does do, much of which is it could do commercially and in some cases

:54:45.:54:47.

does, the licence fee payer doesn't see much of that. You look at the

:54:48.:54:51.

things the BBC is doing which could be on commercial TV. There is no

:54:52.:54:56.

justification for the BBC providing them as a niche. I would think

:54:57.:55:00.

everybody would get much betteral value if we moved to a subscription

:55:01.:55:04.

model. People could download what they want to watch or watch what

:55:05.:55:08.

they want to watch, pay-as-you-go. People are are paying too much for

:55:09.:55:14.

the TV they consume. A big imowe potion on a family budget, you talk

:55:15.:55:19.

about people going to food banks, when you think of what they are

:55:20.:55:25.

forking out for BBC. Than watching Sky? If Sky can get away with what

:55:26.:55:30.

it charges, then I'm sure the BBC could. Another argument for

:55:31.:55:36.

subscription model. I'm disturbed to be agreeing with Dominic. There are

:55:37.:55:40.

many ways in which we should pay for what we consume and the whole issue

:55:41.:55:44.

of iPlayer, watching again, people having, and putting a subscription

:55:45.:55:48.

model would allow people to watch overseas when they can't watch

:55:49.:55:53.

stuff. There needs to be a safeguard of the core functions of public

:55:54.:55:59.

service broadcasting which a commercial broadcaster that will not

:56:00.:56:04.

do. There isn't a broadcaster who does the kind of things at the core

:56:05.:56:08.

in terms of what the BBC does in terms of its public broadcasting. Do

:56:09.:56:12.

you think everybody should have a television set should in the next

:56:13.:56:16.

period, when the charter comes up, be expelled to pay a sum of money to

:56:17.:56:22.

the BBC to keep it going or risk being tang to court It may come out

:56:23.:56:26.

of general taxation so everybody who consumes it, however we consume it,

:56:27.:56:31.

puts something in into it. 608 seconds left for your answers. To to

:56:32.:56:39.

Noel Edmonds I will say no deal! I think that we, I think the BBC is

:56:40.:56:44.

one of the jewels in the crown. I think the licence fee is the right

:56:45.:56:51.

way to pay for, it sharing the cost across the population. I would keep

:56:52.:56:54.

it and make sure the next charter protects the independence of the

:56:55.:56:58.

BBC. You have 30 seconds. Here is a note of unity to end the programme.

:56:59.:57:02.

I agree with what Danny just said. We are good in this country in

:57:03.:57:05.

running down the things that are best about, it the NHS, I would add

:57:06.:57:10.

the BBC. Renowned around the world. We would miss it terribly when it's

:57:11.:57:14.

gone. It's not about what you pay and get. They help to build the

:57:15.:57:18.

society where we are, where we can have debates like that and news that

:57:19.:57:22.

hasn't got a commercial slant on it. It's really, really important to our

:57:23.:57:27.

democracy. David, your job is safe with us! Your presence on the pan

:57:28.:57:32.

sell safe too. You did that in 30 seconds. We have to stop now, our

:57:33.:57:37.

hour is up. Apologies. Next week we will be in Brighton. We have Roman

:57:38.:57:48.

Abramovich -- Diane Abbott for Labour. The Chief Executive from

:57:49.:57:57.

Next and Mick Hucknell. Get with it! He is an old one, you should know.

:57:58.:58:05.

He is - I know! He will be here too. My pension will be coming to an end.

:58:06.:58:15.

OK. Mick Hucknell. The week after that we will be in Bristol. The two

:58:16.:58:22.

B's. Apply in the usual way, the website is on the scene. If you are

:58:23.:58:27.

listening to it on Five Live the debate goes on in Question Time

:58:28.:58:32.

Extra Time. Thank you to our panel, particularly those who picked me up

:58:33.:58:37.

on names I get wrong. Getting my own back. To all of you who came here to

:58:38.:58:44.

Warrington to take part. Until next Thursday on Question Time, from all

:58:45.:58:47.

of us here, good night.

:58:48.:58:51.

David Dimbleby presents the topical debate from Warrington. On the panel are chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander MP, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham MP, Conservative Dominic Raab MP, former director of the Centre for Policy Studies Jill Kirby and crime writer Val McDermid.


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