12/02/2012 Sunday Politics Scotland


Andrew Neil and Isabel Fraser with the latest political news, interviews and debate including cabinet minister Eric Pickles on the government's NHS bill.

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Afternoon, folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics.


The Prime Minister insists this morning he is at one with Health


Secretary Andrew Lansley over the troubled NHS reform. But is the


rest of the Cabinet? Eric Pickles tells us in our Top Story.


As Greece suffers and Syria bleeds, where does Labour stand on the big


foreign policy issues of the day? Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas


Alexander joins us for the Sunday Interview.


And with the Murdoch empire reeling from yet more high-profile arrests


at the Sun, we're joined by the media tycoon's chief tormentor,


Labour MP Tom Watson. On Sunday politics in Scotland, or


we will be speaking to the Scott and others about those referendum


negotiations tomorrow. And with St Valentine's Day coming up, what are


the political chat up lines to sweep you off your feet and what


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 1524 seconds


has to running in the opposite And Fri did not claim that. That is


slightly wrong. He would have known that because it was in the public


domain. Parliament give its... For most people, it was not in the


public domain. I doubt if anybody would do that now, given the


climate of fear. I am certain they would do that now.


If I was fiddling my expenses, every tabloid newspaper would be on


it like a shot. To be all right to pay a Commons


official to do so? There is a public interest in all


of these. There is a public interest defence for hacking a


phone due to the level of seriousness.


Would you like to see Rupert Murdoch dispose of his remaining


newspaper and depart these shores? I would like Rupert Murdoch to


stand up for clean investigated journalism and I would like him to


clean up what went on in News International.


The seed and wanted a sell-out? I think that is down to new score?


I just want him to take responsibility. He is flying into


London this week and has to take his share of responsibility. If


people are charged as a result, is he a fit and proper person to hold


the sky licence. I do not think he is. Off, have to


apply a test to him, but over many years, wrong doing took place. He


is the boss of the company and he is responsible for corporate


governance. He is not a fit and proper person to run a television


company under the rules as they stand.


When it comes to paying the police or other public officials, this is


not confined to Rupert Murdoch's papers and this practice has been


prevalent across Fleet Street. A everyone tells me that. The only


evidence that I have seen personally is what went on at News


International. Clearly, we have to judge an inquiry that can do that.


How did we get here? It is Rupert Murdoch who appoints these big


institutions of national newspapers of repute. He is responsible for


the personnel but allow these things to happen. He must take


responsibility for it. So you do not rely did could be


happening elsewhere? I do not know.


You're watching the Sunday politics. Good afternoon and welcome to


Sunday Politics Scotland. Coming up on the programme...


The Scotland Office Minister David Mundell is with us ahead of the


referendum negotiations tomorrow. How much longer can the talking go


What are the chances of getting a job these days if you're young and


Scottish? Are the politicians' youth employment strategies


working? Why new legislation to end


homelessness by 2012 could make it more difficult for people to find a


permanent home. We are none prioritised due to being single and


homeless. We have to grin and bear it. The lack of housing is unreal.


And from Bartlett's Whitehouse to Salmond's Scotland. The West Wing's


Toby Zeigler tells us what our politicians can learn from the US


when it comes to persuading voters. If the Scottish politicians were to


watch the American campaigns right now, at hopefully at opposing sides


will learn it is not necessary to get so negative. It is ultimately a


destructive factor. They are warming up in their


respective corners and round-one of the referendum negotiations get


underway tomorrow when the the First Minister meets the Scottish


Secretary Michael Moore in Edinburgh. There could be a round


two later in the week with the Prime Minister. The main sticking


points seem to be: one or two questions, and should 16 and 17-


year-olds get to vote. We spoke to Nicola Sturgeon earlier and she


told us that tomorrow's meeting is a welcome step forward. I think


there is no broad consensus in Scotland about the timing of the


referendum. We look forward to hearing views about the questions


that might be in that referendum and on issues such as to 16-year-


old and 17 year olds have the right to vote. The sooner we can get


beyond the issues of protest -- process and into the issue of


substance, which is why Scotland would be better off with an


independent country, the better. We asked for an SNP Minister to


speak to us, but nobody was available.


In our Millbank studio, we have the Conservative MP and Scotland Office


Minister, David Mundell. Will the Prime Minister the up later this


week to talk to the First Minister? The Prime Minister said he might be


in Scotland soon because he is the Prime Minister of the whole United


Kingdom and does come to Scotland on a regular basis. If he is here,


he will be speaking with the First Minister. But the discussions in


relation to the referendum will essentially be conducted by the


Scotland Office with the Scottish Government. That process is


starting tomorrow. I do not expect that tomorrow will be the final and


conclusive discussion on this issue, but it is the start of a positive


process where we can get the detail of the referendum sorted out and


for once, I actually agree with Nicola Sturgeon. We need to get on


to the substance of why a Scotland is better off in Britain.


How much longer could this drag on for?


I hope that it can be concluded as quickly as possible. I think we


have made great progress in the last few weeks, because at the


start of the year, we knew nothing about the SNP Government's


proposals for the referendum. We have a deeper, detailed suggestion.


The major step forward, an acknowledgement that there has to


be a legal basis for the referendum and that can only be with the


involvement of the UK Government. Now it, we need to get the details


sorted out and tomorrow's discussions will move that forward.


What are the lines in the sand for you?


We have always said that we want the referendum to be de Gaulle,


fair and decisive. There is an acceptance that to be legal, it


must involve the UK Government parts. Fairness clearly involves


the Electoral Commission and not necessarily changing the rules


specifically for this referendum. That will be one of the issues


around the franchise. It is an entirely separate debate as to


whether 16 year-olds and 17 year- olds should have the vote or


whether they should be given a vote for this specific issue.


There is a line-up in the sand for 16 holes and 17 year-olds are


voting. You want one question only, is that a deal breaker?


I will not conduct the discussions on this programme. It is wrong to


suggest that individual issues are deal breakers. It is clear that


everyone, it would appear, apart from the First Minister, want a


single question. That is the position of the coalition parties


in the UK level. The First Minister says he wants a


single question as well, but he wants to respond to said that


Scotland who may want another question on the ballot paper or how


it is defined. If there is a devilish and Max question on the


ballot paper, will the Government in Westminster refused to recognise


the legitimacy of the referendum? To a simple yes or no would answer


The simple question for the people of Scotland should be, do they want


to remain part of Britain or not? We need to have that question


answered and then we can move on to discuss the future of the devolved


arrangements if people opt to stay within Britain.


That is an interesting point. Michael Moore himself has said in


an interview in The Times this week that the Scotland Bill is only the


beginning of the powers that will come to Scotland. He said there


could be higher so like further taxation and that sort of things.


Do you agree with him? If we say no at this stage, or will the Scotland


Bill be just the beginning? The Scotland Bill is a very


important series of powers that is being transferred to Scotland. The


most significant financial powers since the act of Union in 17 07. It


is a significant development in devolution. In relation to post


referendum discussions on devolution, it is quite clear that


different parties will go for it with different proposals.


A but what is your party's proposal on this? What is the Conservative


Party's attitude of more power is coming to Scotland if there is a no


in the referendum to independence? We were going to the 2015 general


election with a set of proposals for Scotland.


But what are they? Ruth Davidson has said this far and no further.


What Ruth Davidson has said is that she is setting up a review of all


the policies of the Scottish Conservative Party, but nothing is


off the table. What is clear is that we will have proposals going


into the 2015 election in relation to how we see the devolution


settlement moving forward. At this time, or what we see is the


Scotland Bill being enacted Oakley within the next few months, which


will bring to Scotland than most significant financial powers since


the act of Union and other changes which command widespread support in


Scotland, such as the regulation of their guns.


In the not answering that question, in the not answering -- having a


clear policy at this stage than we are so far into the bit, do you


understand why the electorate might think that you're acting in bad


faith? You can tell us what you plan to do. It is a line in the


sand or it is not. If it is not, what other parts might you


consider? The Liberal Democrats have got a consultation under way


at the moment. Bruce Davidson has said no, there will be nothing.


Mixed messages are coming out all the time. If you are acting in good


faith, argue consulting on further powers and what will they be?


That is a total misrepresentation of my position. You're not


listening to what I have said or what Ruth Davidson has said. Ruth


has made it clear that she will review all the Conservative


policies and ahead of the 2015 election, we will set out their


policies. What powers could there be?


What is fundamentally important is that we settle the issue of whether


Scotland remains in the United Kingdom or not.


What powers would you consider? Sorry to interrupt. What more


powers would you consider? What I want to understand is


whether people in Scotland want to stay within the United Kingdom.


If they do and they want more powers, would you grant devolution


Max? If they want to stay but they want more powers, high when you


respond to that? The political community in Scotland


has always responded to calls for more powers, but that has to be a


defined package of powers. At the moment, devolution Max is undefined.


What grips like reform Scotland think it is and what the Scottish


Trades Union Congress think it are completely different things. What


we need to do at the moment is to settle the issue once and for all.


Is Scotland in the United Kingdom or not, and then move forward if


the answer is yes with the devolution settlement.


In that the terms of the question come all was the SNP Government


have in their consultation, the question is, do you agree Scotland


should be an independent country? Ruth Davidson has said she thinks


this is a fair and decisive legal question. Do you agree with that?


What she has said is that there is tremendous progress that we are


moving forward to have a proposal... As a matter of fact in Holyrood, of


what Ruth Davidson said was that -- it was a fair and decisive leader


questioned. Do you agree with her? Ruth has said that it is a matter


of progress that we move forward and have the simple question of the


sort that ask people whether or not they want to say in the United


Kingdom. Do you agree with that specific


wording? I hope there is agreement from the


SNP Government and the subject will be the Electoral Commission. That


is very important that that happens as part of this process. We need to


get it clear that we're having a fair question. That is the basis on


which I hope we will proceed. Thank you.


The latest figures show 105,000 young people in Scotland are


looking for work at the moment. Politicians of all parties launch


strategies, put forward proposals and hold summits to try to tackle


this problem. So what are they delivering on the ground? Here's


Laura Bicker. They are calling it a lost


generation. Thousands of 18 to 24 year-olds are searching for a


chance, or even a hope of some employment.


There are no jobs out there. I want to be in a trade, but tradesmen are


not taking on apprenticeships. You try so hard on the application and


do not get a return from them. The 18-year-old Sarah Thorne is


part of St League, a project to give her sports coaching skills.


She has been unemployed for two years.


I have done some courses to help me get ready for it, but never gained


anything out of them. It was 12 weeks help and then struck back to


do your own thing again and go back up and signed that book every two


weeks and you're on your own. It was horrible.


22-year-old Daniel Terry has always dreamed of being a sports coach.


Politicians could organise more programmes for people to get


qualifications so employers cannot say you were not qualified. They


should organise more programmes to get people into work in groups so


they could get their confidence up. That is a big issue that says a


month's people that do not have jobs.


This is where some of those young people hope to find work. This is


the national indoor sports arena. It has been built for the


Commonwealth Games in 2014. There are thought to be around 55 job


opportunities here, but the Scottish Government says there are


105,000 under 25 year-olds looking for work. They say they are


creating apprenticeships working with employers to create


opportunities, but the young people we have spoken to say they need


The youth employment minister Angela Constance was not able to


come on, instead we have Marco Biagi of the SNP who sits on a


Education and Culture Committee. And with me in the studio, Sarah


Thorne, who you saw in the film. Also Jo Swinson the Liberal-


Democrat MP, and Kezia Dugdale, Scottish Labour's youth employment


spokesman. What is your strategy for youth employment? The powers of


the Scottish Parliament are used. You see 25,000 apprenticeships


every year. That is 60% up on 2007. The important thing about


apprenticeships in Scotland rather than England, is that they happen


in the workplace. You have 20,000 training opportunities every year.


In Scotland we have a minister for youth employment co-ordinating


activity. Are you doing all you can? We are doing all we can with


the powers we have. Our main lever to tackle youth unemployment is


through education and training, but that does not stop us being


creative in other areas, such as securing money and using public


sector power. Is that good enough? I do not think


so. How could you do it differently? We would not cut


college budgets. The SNP have cut. 1.5 billion a year they are putting


into post 16 education when budgets are restricted. Is it about money


or the strategy? It is about all of theirs. We want to see them using


the buying power of government more effectively. The big debate about


the Forth Road Bridge. How many jobs will it create for young


people? There are questions for the SNP. Also hospitals and schools


they plan to build. The is probably not enough co-


ordination some voluntary groups say. One had 15 people funding it.


Is this a subject where party politics could be set aside?


think so. There are welcome signs that is starting to happen. From


the UK Government perspective we have the youth contract and �1


billion to invest in wage subsidies to create jobs and work experience.


There is often a lack of qualifications that can make it


difficult for young people to secured jobs. We are making sure we


work alongside the Scottish government to make sure initiatives


to Oftel. It could always be done better.


Sarah Thorne, you were in a project you found useful. What skills did


you learn? The first one I attended was a


trust that helped me build skills and gain confidence. The next step


was M I technologists who put me on a work placement that I did not


enjoy. I was not confident. I was working crazy hours the same as


anyone else and I was paid �1 per hour. It is not means tested.


would be the biggest thing politicians could do that would


mean people like you would feel they had a chance of a job? I want


on a course that is a charity. I walked in, no confidence, three


weeks ago, and I am now on national television speaking up. Just to


back and help people get into work. I will leave with six


qualifications. The downside is that it is not what I want to do,


it is care. Trying to get into a course when I don't have the


qualifications is awful. Three years I have wanted to do care.


Is there a point that could work is done through the voluntary sector.


Young people go on courses and have a proven track record and then beat


funding is withdrawn. What continuity can you guarantee?


of the funding opportunities are decided at local government. In my


constituency in Edinburgh, there is an increase in funding available


for voluntary sector projects. That was passed this week. There is


recognition these projects are valuable and need to be funded. I


have met young people who have been through the project, such as the


Canon Gate Youth Project, who talk about the boost to confidence that


provides and how it helps them to find work. The more doom-laden


stories about how the situation is bleak, the more hope can be knocked


down. It is important to have the message that there is a chance for


young people and for young people with reasonable levels of


qualifications, unemployment is on the way down.


When we look at the effect of programmes at the moment, an


apprenticeship used to be done for years, rigorous training. The


current programme focuses on 16-19 year olds. And after that you have


a mass of young people who cannot get work. What is the answer to


longer term unemployment? There is an opportunity for the Government


to address structural issues in the system and tackle that in the jobs


market. That is about investing in young people, getting them involved


in things, giving them sustained experience of work and supporting


them. Where does the money come from? It is more a matter of what


you do if you do not invest now because the cost to the future is


greater than anything invested now. Do you have any sense that possibly


we are not getting the education balance right? Business often say


there is emphasis on encouraging people into college courses and we


should be stepping back and looking at what might be more relevant.


think you get that complaint from businesses sometimes that young


people do not have the qualifications and experience they


require. That is why the youth contract is important. Nick Clegg


has pushed for that investment to enable people to have experience.


That also gives employers to see the talent out there. Sarah Thorne


is an excellent example. It gives young people the experience of what


it is like to be in the workplace. What it is like rather than having


the academic experience early. I'm glad to see that under pressure


from the Liberal-Democrats, cuts to colleges in the Scottish Parliament


were reduced this week. It is important places are available for


people who want to get a qualification so they can get into


the jobs market. Do you have any concern... You have


worked hard. You have been successful at what you have tried


to do, but have you concerns that you will put effort into a college


place, get there and get your qualification... And not have a job


by the end? I do. I dropped out of school. I wanted to prove it was


not because I was not clever enough. -- my brother dropped out. He


worked hard for five years to become a trades man, timing, and


now there is no work for him. your friends, how disheartening is


it that you do the best you can and give it everything, and there is


nothing? It knocks you down a level. What is the point of building


confidence, for it not to be recognised? It is degrading. Also,


you get a job diary at the JobCentre. You have to fill that in.


You worry your benefits will be sanctioned. We will not go down


that road just now! That is a point, nobody sitting around here,


whatever political so -- political persuasion, that somebody can give


so much and then been knocked down. I am asking about the priorities


you are choosing. Is it right to focus on the apprenticeships and


16-19 year olds, when older graduates are also struggling for


jobs, and is it right not enough money is going into the early


years? Why are you choosing the priorities you are choosing?


The 16-90-year-old age group is important. When people leave


compulsory education they have to ensure they have an opportunity.


The opportunities for all programme will be a landmark, offering to


everybody in that age bracket he does not have employment, education


or a training place. If you can stop people being unemployed at


that stage, you can have serious benefits further run. I would not


say there is no emphasis on early years. Spend has been a hallmark of


the Budget in that area. Many apprenticeships do include those up


to 24. There is a commitment across the board. There is a recognition


that full young people, in good economic times even, it is hard for


them to find work. Is that the bottom line, in hard times, young


people will suffer more? Yes. He talks about the 16-19 year olds the


gender. They have a bold step to give every young person an


opportunity, but it must be meaningful. In my experience, it


can be as little as two hours a week. People just want a job and a


chance. We have to leave this here. Thank you for that.


Before you go, you have a statement saying the SNP should drop plans to


allow 16 and 17 year olds to vote in the referendum. We understand


you are meeting the campaign group promoting votes for this age group.


I am a supporter of votes at 16 and I will continue to campaign. I do


not think with the voting franchise we should pick and choose. The SNP


plans are incoherent. They are not planning a new canvas. It would be


votes for 16 and three-quarter year olds. I do not supported for one-


off referendums. I think all those who support votes at 60 should work


together to get it changed for good and for all elections.


Housing charities warned that unless more affordable


accommodation is made available, a growing number of people will be


stuck in temporary homes. We report on why new legislation to end


homelessness by 2012 could make it more difficult for those in need to


find a permanent home. Andrew is homeless and living in a


hostel -- run by a Christian housing trust. They concentrate on


finding homes for people who need help the most. You are not


prioritised being single and homeless. You have to grin and bear


it at the moment. It is unreal. wants to get back to work. He says


finding affordable private sector accommodation is a challenge.


was a job that was ideal, unfortunately, the accommodation


around that area, where I was wanting to be, was on affordable.


This man is also home this. He has lived in his car in the Borders.


When you have been sleeping in your car, you feel nobody will give you


a chance. Hello. He is now moving into short-term housing while


borders Council find him a home. Shelter Scotland say the council is


one of nine local forages who have met the 2012 commitment. This is


the biggest challenge we have had in 20 years. It has required a root


and branch approach. We have changed policy comprehensively. We


had to change the ethos in the service to put more focused on


prevention of homelessness and sustaining 10 ounces. The bottom


line is that we will continue to need more affordable housing --


tenancies. With a lack of affordable housing and no sanctions


for councils to do not deliver, can any commitment be fulfilled? It is


important to have a goal like the Scottish howff of ending


homelessness in 2012. -- they have. You still have to have resources


there. You have to have the support system in place to enable people to


sustain housing. It is not enough to have the statements, although


they are important. By the end of 2012, local-authority is will have


to class every unintentionally homeless person as a priority and


give them access to a home. The challenge will be to make sure


people like Andrew are not stuck in With me here is the Editor of The


Big Issue, Paul McNamee. And in our Edinburgh studio, we have Graham


Brown, the director of the homeless charity Shelter Scotland.


What do you think this 2012 legal commitment is actually worth?


I think it is a great idea. Anything that grabs this and tries


to do something about the ongoing issues of homelessness is fantastic.


But something that Dennis touched on gets much closer to the problem.


It is not really enough just to build houses. You will not end


homelessness like that. Kit sounds contradictory, but that is at the


base here. There is something much broader and much more societal. You


cannot eradicate polio, and you have to get right down to the base.


Why it sort of structures are needed? You say it seems obvious


that you can put someone in a house, but what is the bigger picture


around that? With The Big Issue, we offer people


a way to get self-respect and make a living. That is a good start. But


you have to remember that these people, a lot of these people, have


incredibly different, fractured lives. They might not know how to


look after themselves properly or pay bills or make sure they are


connected to the mains. There is an awful lot of things that keeps


people in this situation. In the previous item, people were talking


about youth unemployment. If the word hope came up a couple of times.


The need hope and ambition and some kind of future. You need to work


out why that is not there for people who are falling through the


cracks and what we can do to address that.


Given what Paul has just said, are the much wider issues for a


particular section of people who are repeatedly homeless? It in the


general picture, do you think we have enough houses to meet the


current needs or planning enough for the future?


Clearly not. The 2012 commitment is a staging post. It is a process. It


is not the end in itself. There needs to be much more done and we


are all agreed about that. We welcome the Scottish Government's


commitment to bring empty homes back into use. They have been


funding programmes to do that, which makes a lot of sense. We also


welcome the additional �80 million they have invested this week in an


-- into affordable housing. It is quite clear that at the moment that


the danger is we are going to put a lot of people into temporary


accommodation. Some people can end up in temporary accommodation for


over two years. That is not a solution. We need to invest in more


affordable housing. What about this non-privatisation.


We heard in the report that if you were a single man or if you were a


childless couple that you were not made a priority. What you think


will be the effect of this legal obligation in practice that there


should be non-privatisation and everybody should get equal access?


This is the significance of the 2012 commitment. We have not just


have to use teens procedure, a be a fat to change the ethos and working


culture and attitudes towards housing and homelessness


departments and local authorities. Local authorities across Scotland


have been working hard and the Scottish Government to do that.


That will be one of the big pay- offs of this commitment. Can I just


remind people that when this commitment was made, it was made


with all-party support across the entire political spectrum and the


Scottish Parliament. What about securing tenancies and


initiatives like that? What kind of role will the private sector have?


Do you think we are imaginative enough about actually Freeman that


properly? We probably aren't, but it is


something to do with housing stock and how big can get access to that.


As has been touched on, when this came around in 2003, we did not


know about the financial catastrophe that was coming. Access


to a tenancy probably would have become a bit easier. To a lot of


things that have happened since then have meant that it is not


quite as straightforward as just putting a couple of bits of policy


into place. Is there a different experience for


people in rural areas and in cities, or how does that actually contrast?


Between rural and city, and also in different regions across the


country. The people that sell The Big Issue in London, you will find


many and younger men. In some parts of Scotland, it will beat people


who are a bit unsure about whether or not they can meet the next


payments on the rent and they are fearful of falling into


homelessness. They may have a family. There is no one single kind


of person that comes under homelessness.


Thank you. Now in homage to St Valentine, it's


political seduction time. They are all going to sweet talk you. Look


at what a lovely future you could have with them, and, oh, their


competitors? Not your type at all. Those referendum party strategists


have their eye on you and Hayley Jarvis has been checking out what


they are going to do about it. We need to start building a big


community for this client... family advertising company takes


pride in its power to persuade. It is in their business of selling


products and ideas and says politics is no different.


If you can get a strong message out there that resonates with people,


if you can get that message out there, you can actually drive


somebody to go whitened actually vote. We did about four executions


and... That the agency has worked with


almost all of the political parties at some stage and in the case of


the success, it was the Conservative and Labour parties.


How easy was it to prevent a united front?


It was challenging to deal with two sets of people but they knew what


they wanted to do. The Independent's campaign will be


similar. So if politicians are in the


business of selling their brand, I will they reach out to us?


A winning campaign needs ideas and evidence and passion. Those are the


ingredients that any campaign seeks to bring to bear in its


conversation with the voters. The SNP believes positive


campaigning led them to victory last May. But party strategists


says he will take this approach again using the most up-to-date


marketing techniques along the way. Every campaign that we have run in


the recent past and have a confident campaign team and they


have used every single tool that one uses a modern campaigning and a


modern research to be as well informed as you possibly can be, to


consider high it is that you are communicating your message and to


deploy that message has effectively as you can.


Pro-independence bloc or Peter tends to communicate his message


face-to-face. He worked as a negotiator dealing with trade


disputes and he hopes to use his powers of persuasion at community


level. I hope to find people but share my


viewpoint and see if we can form a small nucleus to get something


moving in and my immediate village. But it has to be broadened to


people who have a different viewpoint and who may have a


diametrically different viewpoint and to people who have no foreign


view at all. It is judging how those undecided voters will be here


is that keeps these people busy. Positivity, apparently, is the key.


It is this middle ground that both the campaigns are going to be


fighting for. Negative campaigns tend to suppress the turnout of


those people in the middle. For the Unionists and the SNP, they have to


figure out how to get their message across in this positive ways.


Try telling that to make Ronnie's campaign team. Attacking the


opponents seems to be par for the course. But this negativity could


be stifling real debate. That is someone according -- according to


someone who has experience on and off the screen.


The Scottish should watch what we have done in this country. We have


destroyed the political process. Congress cannot even have a


conversation because it is so parties and. Everything is related


to the upcoming elections, whether it is the two year Congressional


elections. They're so better. This is because of all the negativity.


Nothing is accomplished here. Positive or negative, the parties


will be hoping their sales pitch will appeal to voters across the


spectrum in the run-up to the referendum. The real test of their


powers of persuasion is that they can stretch that far.


With me to shed some more light on the art of political persuasion is


the ex-Scottish Labour spin doctor, Simon Pia, the Communications


consultant to the SNP, and former special advisor to the First


Minister, Jennifer Dempsie. And the Professor of Political


Communication at Glasgow University, Sarah Oates.


If I were to ask you all very briefly, what makes the perfect


politician? Sarah. I would be in a far wealthier


position than I am today! The perfect politician is someone who


can communicate their message in an upbeat, positive way, respectful of


the voters's intelligence, a leading and not following,


proposing positive ideas for society while being realistic.


Obviously, I have described some on it does not exist!


What do you think? I agree with the positive part.


Some of his dynamic with the ability to change to react. Someone


that is very consultative and listens to ideas from wherever they


come from. And over all, some on his 100% dedicated and has a thick


skin. The perfect politician... I think


it is someone with the Big Idea, conviction, leadership, guts,


charisma, courage. And have you found all of those


things in any one person? No, I will not as good that! We are


constantly talking about a positive environment. And we also know that


you're out there checking the focus groups, the SNP are turning to


psychologists about voting patterns... How seriously do the


strategists take the kind of feedback they get and how far does


that actually changed where they might have been going?


Very seriously. We build a strategy based on the various things. The


obvious the use focus groups to look at opinion polls. We use our


Act of its system, which has all hour candidates information right


from the doorsteps. And obviously we take from media and what do


politicians are saying. There is a whole wide range of things. But


having that expertise to look at trends from people who are


psychologists and sociologists, it does help look at what the


direction of the country is going and what the mood is, particularly


with regards to the media. But doesn't that mean that we have


the politicians fog and public opinion than what they really hope


is that they will shape public opinion and advance to be it?


In democracy, it is an elaborate dance. It is between knowing what


the public wants and leading the public is something better.


President Barack Obama is the perfect type of that person. He


exploded onto the scene and did not follow politics as usual. Some of


his politics did not have a majority public support. But his


image of what the public should be and what the country should be was


revolutionary. Up the question in Scotland is, do we have a


politician who can also tap into that zeitgeist and at the same time,


create a new image of what it is to be Scottish, whether that is to be


Scottish within the UK or Scottish within an independent nation. That


is the challenge, I think, for the political parties in Scotland today.


How prescriptive can you actually be in high and individual interacts


with the public? It must come to some point for the do not look


pathetic. What has changed dramatically it is


that politics is less tribal and people say you rather than


identifying themselves as working class, they identified themselves


as Scottish primarily. This is to the advantage of the SNP.


So what is less tribal with the voters?


What all political parties are after is the swing voter, the


persuader balls. We try and kid on that we don't follow America, but


America has led the way on this. What Jennifer was alluding to -


focus groups, they have fallen on hard times. New Labour's success,


fill up gold went to America and study into how Clinton encoder that.


Gordon Brown is a big fan of this. I know there is people in the SNP


who reviewer Philip Gould and they have his began their of us. They


use that. It is how you tap into that. A big key thing about 2011...


Barack Obama had more money than became. People do not think about


that. The SNP had a lot more money than Labour and they spent seven


times more than us in the 2011 Election. They had the ability to


do market research and spend three times more on advertising. That is


a problem. You do pick up on these trends and what people want and


it's you know what buzzwords and messages to be Dowds there. They


have been tried with the focus groups and have people react in a


positive way, that is the key. All parties are negative in certain


ways. Alex Salmond got the sun to do his negative smear campaign


after ingratiating himself with Sir Rupert Murdoch. The Daily Record


was a long-term supporter of Labour, the only people in Scotland. If you


want media backing, the SNP got numerous papers to back them. It


was a sea-change in Scottish You are getting tribal here.


Jennifer wants to fight for her side, I want to fight for mine.


you buy an election? Out absolutely not. Money is not everything. It


would be the easy answer. The fact is money does not mean anything if


you do not have the right product and brand and in this case the


right party and team and ideas and vision. If the SNP did not have


that platform in the recent election, they would not have won.


They did attract extra funding from supporters. It enabled us to target


people and follow the trends and where the shift in opinion was.


When somebody says the word brand about politics and the right


message, we are focusing this, do you have any feeling that whatever


happened to conviction politics, with people speaking from a heart?


I do not have that visceral reaction. Probably because I am


American. I feel like an anthropologist who has been dropped


into a local tribe to study. As much as I would like to say the


sciences everything, it is not. It sets your playing field. After that,


the players go out. Alex Salmond has out batted everybody. Alex


Salmond has his talent. But my view is the emperor has no clothes. The


S&P had their message that they were for Scotland. -- SNP. They


wanted to avoid independence at all costs. I am a Labour through and


through. The point is there was a single coherent positive message. D


you accept Labour did not get that? It did not come across. Our message


was fighting for what really matters. I would argue the general


election in Westminster, people voted on policy is more. The


Holyrood election is more about the feeling. The S&P message was that


they are for Scotland. -- SNP. think absolutely and I said it at


the beginning, do not underestimate the intelligence of the voter.


Sometimes it is emotion. We are almost out of time. Women voters,


do they have a distinctive voice? It turns out women are more


conservatively voting. It is a fight to get women. They vote with


their heads, not their Hearts, to buy into independence.


challenge will be for independence, and I think they can do that


because they have detailed messages to get across. We are giving the


women the last word, Simon. barged in as usual. People to vote


on emotions and feeling rather than reason, which his wife those pro-


union have to make... Simon, I am sorry, it looks like I am pulling


rank. But we are out of time. Thank you. Now time for the lunchtime


news. Good afternoon. The Scottish and UK governments say


they are hoping to quickly resolve outstanding wrangles over plans for


the independence referendum. First Minister Alex Salmond is due to


meet with Scottish Secretary Michael Moore tomorrow in Edinburgh.


While they have been disagreeing over arrangements to run the ballot,


proposed by the SNP for autumn 2014, both sides say there is now more


common ground. There is no broad consensus about the timing of the


referendum. We look forward to hearing views about the questions


that might be in that referendum. do not expect tomorrow will be the


final discussion on this issue, but it is the start of a positive


process, where we can get the details sorted out.


Bankers from the Royal Bank of Scotland have been arrested as part


of an investigation into alleged personal tax fraud. The arrests


include four current staff and one former employee from the Edinburgh-


headquartered bank. They were arrested at their homes across


London and the Home Counties on Wednesday.


Scotland's rugby squad are in Cardiff, taking on Wales at the


Millennium Stadium this afternoon in their Six Nations Match. They're


looking to bounce back from their opening day defeat last Saturday at


Murrayfield, where they lost to England by 13-6. Head coach Andy


Robinson says he believes Scotland can upset the odds and is urging


his players to maintain their composure. There is live coverage


composure. There is live coverage on this channel this afternoon. And


now the weather. Another cloudy day across the


country. It was misty first think. There will be mist around today.


Temperatures are not too bad. Colder in the south-east. Overnight,


there will be a change with the weather front pushing in that will


bring colder air and a strengthening north-westerly breeze.


It will be windier tomorrow. I will be back with more news this


In a moment we will discuss some of the big events coming up. But first


the Week in 60 seconds. Dundee United have come to Glasgow


and beaten Rangers! BBC Scotland has uncovered documents that


suggest that Rangers' owner may have lied under oath. John Swinney


secured backing for his Budget. have listened to views from across


the chamber. We have acted decisively. And islanders went to


parliament to protest about fishing grounds being decimated. There was


high drama at the biggest council in Glasgow when dissenting Labour


councillors threatened the approval of the Budget. I am thrilled and


delighted. And the view from Trump Towers. Donald Trump accuses the


Scottish government of being hell- bent on destroying Scotland's Coast


line with wind turbines. I enjoyed in the studio by two


prodigious political bloggers. Kate Higgens, otherwise known as A Burdz


Eye View, and Ian Smart, who has his own website and contributes to


Labour Hame. Let's talk about the referendum mechanics. How much


longer can it go on? Please, not much longer. The sooner we get out


of the political parlour and into the public arena, the better.


People will just switch off and stop engaging and stick their


fingers in their ears and hope it will go away and I think


politicians have to be wary of getting to that point. It is a


positive sign meetings are going ahead, but let's get the mechanics


sorted out sooner rather than later. I agree entirely. This is of


interest to political bloggers, but I'm not sure about the general


public. Should there be a news blackout until we know the


question?! He will oversee it, no more until we know what is


proposed? Presumably its horse- trading on screen? Presumably they


are flying kites. Alex Salmond will say things have not been finally


agreed because they will be finally agreed with the Prime Minister


later in the week. He will say a lot of progress has been made and


they will reach a consensus in due course. What are we missing when we


focus on this? We are very much missed in what independence might


do or what staying in the union might achieve. At the moment we are


at this stage of sorting out the mechanics and also there is


shouting going on, and with both side shouting and not making a lot


of sense. I made a decision this week not to talk about the


referendum for a week because it is boring and there is a lot of wrong


information out there. We need to get to the issues that people want


to know about to make an informed choice. If we are getting into


statistics, how informed? We have the same evidence and conflicting


interpretations. It will be tricky. One of the things that has to be


clarified is what is meant by independence. In the 1920s, when


the SNP was formed, nobody is suggesting that is the model of


independence. It is not clear what the alternative is. It was


suggested today it appears we will keep the Queen and Stirling.


need clarity. Do you think no party will come up with anything that


involves hard choices? Is that the chilling effect? Yes. I think it is.


It would be a missed opportunity. This is a once in a generation


opportunity. Party such as the Lib Dems and David Mundell was


suggesting today, let's have a yes or know, and then we will discuss


powers. Forget that approach. People do not want to spend ten


years talking about the constitution. Let's have a proper


informed debate about the issues. It is not fair to the Scottish


people, otherwise, to neutralise the issues to obtain party


advantage. This is the decision of the Scottish people and nobody else.


Glasgow, City Council, do you want to go about that? It is a private


beef. There is an element that the focus has been on people defecting


and maybe the real embarrassment for the Labour Party is how they


were Labour councillors in the first place. They are suggesting


they are going to stand as independents. The used to be said


in Glasgow you could put to Rangers have told a donkey and it would be


elected. He is a lawyer and he is heading down a road that is making


me uncomfortable. I am worried about defamation! I have not


mention names. -- mentioned. The persuasion peace. We know they are


looking at ways of gauging what we think and how to appeal. What about


the idea of different sections of society, women are in a specific


section, there is the youth vote. Some suggest if you are older and


affluent, you are less likely to vote SNP. What will may have to do


to challenge attitudes? We had a chat about this on the train coming


over. We decided we might not impart commercially sensitive


information. We have more elections between us than we care to remember.


What was really interesting in the discussion earlier work two words


missing, trust and respect. People vote for who they believe can make


a difference. There is a danger of applying too much science and


strategy. It is important. You need to have an approach that works and


appeals. But you have to have big ideas. Trust and respect are vital.


People will not vote for politicians they like the best


necessarily, but for those they feel they can trust to do the job.


We saw back in 2011 election. other thing, everybody says you


have to be positive. That is the official line. The reason negative


campaigning is used is because it works. It is not realistic to think


there would not be negative campaigning come the independence


referendum. If one side is relying heavily on negative campaigning,


well, it is interesting, there are advantages and disadvantages in


every argument. It would be condescending to focus on the


positive? Absolutely. It is how you do that. The SNP are clever in how


they put negativity into their positive message. They use


marketing tools and engagement tools to ensure the trip of


negativity is happening in a subtle way. I think they have issues,


particularly with women, but they are alert to those. They have time


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