24/06/2012 Sunday Politics Scotland


Andrew Neil and Isabel Fraser with political news, including an interview with Danny Alexander. George Galloway and Bob Stewart go head-to-head on the future of the Falklands.

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Welcome to the Sunday Politics. He's one of the four men who make


all the big decisions in the coalition. The others you know well.


David Cameron, Nick Clegg, George Osborne. Today, as the British


economy struggles to escape the recession, and the eurozone stares


into the abyss, we talk to the fourth man, Chief Secretary to the


Treasury Danny Alexander, about the economy, tax and the coalition.


David Cameron and his Argentine counterpart went head to head over


the Falklands this week. Respect MP George Galloway and Defence


Committee Tory MP Colonel Bob Stewart go to battle over the same


issue. And on Sunday politics Scotland,


the original Act of Union might be a fragile document, but tomorrow


the campaign begins to keep the political union strong. The slogan


is better to get and they promise the best of both worlds. We hear


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 1782 seconds


from the backers, the tractors and The Tories were ready to share


sovereignty. Look back, I might not have been in Parliament that long


but the Government were ready to share sovereignty at that time, the


Tory and Labour governments. Falkland Islands have cost Britain


a lot of money. It has cost the lives. Why would you give it up now


when it seems there would be all to be had? Because he would have to


give it up in total later. Latin America, it is 100% behind us.


are not. Even the Spanish have turned against Argentina.


Spanish are a long way away. The Brazilians, the Argentinians, the


growing power of Venezuela, these countries that are rich. We should


have good relations with them. We should have good relations, share


the oil and gas in the Falkland Islands and save money and not have


to send an aircraft carrier and is more men. We do not have one to


send. He is saying Latin America is so full of emerging economies and


we have good relations with Latin America and we just don't talk to


Argentina. We have got good relations with Latin America. They


exist. Argentina is not all that popular in Latin America. I


slightly disagree with you, George. I totally disagree. I quite like


disagreeing with you. Get to the point. The South Americans are not


just as George has presented. Some of them are on side on this matter.


Name names. Brazil is not as bad as you say. Brazil is 100% behind the


claim of Argentina. If you look at the speech of the Brazilian


ambassador at the United Nations. Brazil is somebody we should be


friends with. This is politics. We are not having a battle. We want


Argentina to back off. That is what we require. Argentina is in real


economic trouble. This is sabre- rattling, they do not have the


military means. I do not think you are in trouble because you take


your oil resources back from the Spanish. The Argentines are within


their right to take that the oil company. Argentina, its flag is


flying ever higher because of this issue. They cannot resist the call


for the Liberation, as they put it, from European colonial rule.


the Argentinians to take over islands when everybody wants to


stay away from Argentina, that is can only ionisation. We have to end


it there. It was a spirited debate Good afternoon. Welcome to Sunday


Politics Scotland. Coming up on the programme:


The old Articles of Union might be showing their age, but unionists


say they are still relevant. Tomorrow sees the launch of their


campaign to keep Scotland in the UK. Scottish Secretary Michael Moore is


here to predict how the Better Together campaign will go. And the


SNP's Stewart Hosie will be giving us his assessment.


We have a special investigation into the cash-for-gold business.


There are calls for a new code of conduct in Scotland.


And at the end of the school year, does the latest craze for American


style-proms put more pressure on kids, or is it just harmless fun?


In the debate over the referendum on Scottish independence, the yes


campaign has already begun. Tomorrow the other campaign is


launched, the one that says yes to stay in the union offering,


supporters say, the best of both worlds. The slogan is Better


Together. Can the campaign cast itself as more than just a no to


independence? And how united is this pro-Union alliance of Labour,


Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats?


This is what we are talking about, the treaty of Union between


Scotland and England. You can see the articles of union. The first at


the bottom of the page say the two kingdoms of Scotland and England


shall be united into one Kingdom by the name of Great Britain. Rarities


in black and white. If we turn the pages that are over 300 years old,


we have to be careful, you can see the signatories to the treaty. On


the Scottish side on the left we have names such as Queensberry and


the Joint Secretaries of State. On the right, we have Lord Godolphin,


the Lord High Treasurer. More than 300 years later the debate on


whether to maintain that Union is well under way. Tomorrow, the


campaign supporting the union will be officially launched. The Future


of Scotland will be challenging to make a positive case. Within the


United Kingdom, Scotland enjoys benefits. We have the arenas of


international inference, international affairs, and we have


in domestic parliament here are good control up over our own


domestic to vault issues. That seems to me the best of both worlds.


How United what the pro-union campaign the? When the parties seem


to agree on hardly anything else. You would be may be surprised about


how United this campaign is. We put aside differences, we do not forget


them, we put them aside to ensure we get the benefits of the United


Kingdom put forward in the campaign. If the Scots vote no, what then? At


Stirling Castle on Friday, the Welsh First Minister told us that


the UK Government had to come up with an offer on further devolution


sooner rather than later. It needs to be made before the referendum.


It is not good enough to say there would be discussions after. The


people of Scotland need to see what alternatives there might be on the


table before the referendum takes place. Labour's deputy leader in


Scotland said that is a question for after the referendum. We are


open to that debate but it is a separate argument. We ask is


Scottish people to make the biggest decision in 300 years. It is


devolution again separation. opinion polls seem to be on the


pro-union side. The campaign knows it has a long way to go to persuade


Scottish people not tear up the Union. The Scottish Secretary joins


us from the Edinburgh studio. How do you launch this? Do you imagine


you can set a positive vision, given that there are such disparate


views of what the constitutional settlement should be, even within


the individual parties taking part? The central issue we are being


asked to resolve is the future of Scotland's place in the UK. We are


fundamentally stronger together and would be weaker apart. Your


commentators in the last piece made some of the arguments about


opportunities we have as we are part of a bigger United Kingdom


economy. The strength of being part of that to avoid some of the risks


we see for smaller countries elsewhere in Europe. We have a huge


amount of clout for Scotland being part of the UK's internationally.


Whether it is NATO, the United Nations, that is important, also is


important, we have devolution already to the Scottish Parliament


and in the past few weeks we have delivered the latest date of that


with new tax and borrowing powers. I think there is a positive case


for Scotland to be part of the UK and I look forward to a strong


debate about it. Opinion polls show us that the majority in Scotland


would like a second question that addresses the powers that may be


appropriate within a devolved settlement still within the United


Kingdom. You are denying them back. As a federalist, that is a


ludicrous position to take. The Liberal Democrats could have owned


D Lomax. You could have moved into ground that is positive. --


devolution max. The poll does not share a demand for a second


question, it shows an appetite for a wider debate. The debate is under


way. As a Liberal Democrat I am committed for home rule for


Scotland and a loosening of ties within the United Kingdom while


preserving the United Kingdom. In Scotland, we can have that debate


and has a party we are under way with that. Looking at tax, welfare


and other issues. Others need to be part of that. It is not for me to


tell Scotland what they should think, it is for everybody, the


voluntary sector and others, to be part of the debate. In order to


have the debate and reach an assessment of what they think is an


appropriate way forward, people need the facts. At what point will


they know what extra powers for example the Liberal Democrats are


proposing? Is it in time for the general election? At what point


does clarity coming to the debate? Can I make an important distinction.


We have yes N P who have campaigned to have a vote on Scotland's place


in the UK -- SNP. They have won a majority and we as a UK government


do not agree with their view for Scotland but we want to work with


the Scottish government to deliver a vote on that issue, which SNP


activists have campaigned for. Let's have the referendum.


Independence is separate to devolution. We do not need to muddy


the waters by having two questions on the same ballot paper. We


continue to have the debate and we as a party was set out our ideas


for the future of devolution in the months ahead. A are you concerned


that if it is a no to independence in 2014, the political leverage is


does have painted when you go into subsequent talks with Westminster -


- is dissipated. There is no political leverage left at


Westminster for the argument. fundamentally disagree. We look at


these stages of devolution we have had. We created the Scottish


Parliament in the Nineties because we had a huge debate over many


years among the parties and crucially involving people who are


not politicians, the voluntary sector, business, and we'd got


consensus. The political parties delivered the Parliament after 1997.


Just recently we have delivered the Scotland Act with more financial


powers, based on parties coming together, agreeing a proposition


and delivering it. I believe that is sensible. There is a threat,


when you remove that why would they give anything? We have had a lively


debate about independence or devolution. All the other parties


apart from the SNP have been happy to be part of the debate about more


powers for Scotland. We are saying they have raised the issue of


independence and won majority in the Scottish Parliament, let's


resolve the issue. We will set out our stall and we want to see what


other folk think and then we will deliver it. Let me ask you about a


quote from the Liberal Democrat leader today. He said Scotland


would be thrown into legal limbo without a straight referendum


choice on independence or the status quo. He said it would end up


in the courts. He said he does not want the future of the country to


be decided by the courts rather than voters at the ballot box. The


answer to that is simple, this is not a legal question, this is a


political question. You can give them the legal coverage, they can


have any number of questions, in not allowing that you have made a


political choice, not a legal choice. I reject that. We need to


have a clear question about what Scotland's future is. Is it staying


as part of the UK or becoming a separate country, will it be


independent in the world? That is a central and simple proposition. I


passionately want Scotland to stay part of the UK. We can sort out the


legality of the Scottish Parliament's ability to hold a


referendum by working with the Scottish government. We are well


under way with that. The separate issue is that if you put two


questions on the paper and get a majority in favour of independence,


and a bigger majority in favour of more powers, we will have a


democratic out raged that the bigger result has been ignored


because the SNP says that will make as independent. I can see arguments


about that and people going to court to interpret the outcome. He


is right to say that would be a farce. It is a simple and


straightforward proposition to resolve that. Then we can work


through the remaining issues. Joining me now is a Stewart Hosie


from our Dundee studio. What did you make of that final point? Why


have you got to with the talks in terms of the legalities?


Scottish Government will have a mandate to hold this referendum and


if the UK Government wanted to clarify any legal concerns they


have, they could make a section 30 transfer. That is in their hands


and we hope they do that. We have no doubt that holding a referendum


in Scotland will be legal. If we look at the direction of travel


that the SNP seem to be on, you keep modifying what the concept of


independent means, you will keep the monarchy, you say you may stay


in NATO. Are you confident you are taking the party with you on this?


Yes, absolutely. We are talking about us having the best of both


worlds. A normal independent Scotland and a union with our


neighbours, using those things would makes sense to use it. The


head of state, the Stirling currency, it makes sense for


everybody but we take all the other political decisions which matter


and that really chimes with the social attitudes and with the


recent opinion poll which shows the majority of people wanted the


Scottish Parliament to take the majority of decisions over most


things. Let me clarify something here. You make these assertions and


say that we will keep Stirling, that we will get rid of Trident and


that you may firmly believe that that is a strong possibility. The


fact of the matter is that you cannot guarantee that. These are


negotiating positions. In a sense, no government ever or party can


hold a future government to lock them down, of course that is right.


When you come to the referendum and 2014, the Scottish people on the


basis of a public prospectus -- published prospectus will determine


the situation of this could -- the Scottish state. I am giving you my


position. Every look at the second question and yet again in opinion


polls, this has come up again, the majority of people would like the


option of a second question, more devolved powers within the Union.


Given the direction of travel and how some of the stand-alone SNP


policies have been diluted in the past which we have spoken about, if


you do put a second question on this referendum ballot paper, the


SNP will lose, that is what the opinion polls are telling us.


will be an independent question and we are campaigning to win that. We


and many others outside the SNP what Scotland to be a normal,


independent country and I am confident we will win that


referendum and what we have said is it is right and proper to recognise


a body of opinion which wants to go further with devolution than we


currently have but not as far as independence and if that can


coalesce around a detailed prospectus, then we are open to


having VAT on the ballot paper. I think that shows a huge weakness in


the no campaign as your interview with Michael Moore said. They need


to determine what that is in advance of the opinion poll and we


can test that against independence and the status quo. We have been


open to this for some time, I am at a loss as to understand what the no


campaign political parties who say they want further devolution are


unable to agree on what that means. Also a body of opinion within the


SNP who says it you put a second question on the referendum ballot


he will have squandered the party's best chances in generations of


getting a clear majority for independence. Are you willing to


risk that? I don't think it is a risk and I don't agree with that


assessment at all. I think the case for independence is unanswerable.


An incredibly strong case that Scotland can stand on its own two


feet, work with its neighbours, have the clout within the


international community. And we are having a seat on the United Nations


which we currently do not have. I think the case for independence


trumps the case for further devolution that there are those who


believe that there should be further devolution. Thank you for


that. More specifics now on the poll


which we mentioned earlier and this MORI poll commissioned by the


Future of Scotland Campaign, 1,000 people were asked to name the


issues and more than one if they wanted of most concern to them. The


economy was named as a key concern for 51%, followed by unemployment


which mattered most for 21%. Education was most important for


21% and public spending cuts by 20%. Scottish independence was a key


concern for 16%. The Scottish Council of Voluntary Organisations


has a leading role in this Future of Scotland Campaign, and it's


chief executive Martin Sime is here now. The shows the people of


Scotland represented in this poll are quite a way ahead of the


politicians in terms of understand it the issues and wanted to see an


open discussion and debate about all the options for Scotland's


governance rather than turning this into yes/ no Punch and Judy


campaign. What do you think should be asked in the 2014 referendum?


What more should be discussed. The Future of Scotland Campaign were


taking the temperature of the public to see their views on a


range of subjects. I think for example, a large majority of the


people who responded wanted to see welfare powers transferred to the


Scottish Parliament. I think that is an interesting and important


agenda. We should be debating that now. Those of the real issues that


people are concerned about rather than the campaigns that a week will


see. It strikes me that spending lot of money on staff and public


relations to argue yes/ no is not actually the kind of debate that


people want. The politicians ought Do you think there should be a


second question? What we are interested in at this stage is


keeping all the options on the table and opening out the debate so


that real people get a chance to contribute. How does that work in


practice? What are the mechanisms? There's lot of initiatives going on


to encourage people, not from the politicians interestingly. They


will appear in the endless political shows doing this phoney


war and we all know what happens when that happens. The casualty of


that approach, we know that. Rather than turn this into a binary issue,


we should discuss the issues that affect people and reflect the


aspirations they have and in their lives and the kind of Parliament


they would like to see and powers they would like to see if. We have


to leave it there, thank you. With high gold prices and tough


economic times, more people are cashing in on their jewellery. But


a BBC Scotland investigation has found some people are getting a


very raw deal. Scottish consumer groups are calling for a code of


conduct like the oneself of the border. Good Morning Scotland's


business presenter Waseem Zakir has been looking into the booming cash-


for-gold industry. Gold, a safe haven during turbulent


times and the commodity. It is in demand as never before. Its price


has soared recently. More and more people are cashing in on their old


gold. The number of poor because has doubled in the past few years


and gold buying outlets have mushroomed. But there are real


horror stories about and -- unscrupulous buyers. We are worried


that people are offered evaluation and than they are offered much less.


People accepting a much lower valuation or paying to get their


gold back. To have managed to get hold of some gold for myself and


there was to do some mystery shopping to see what sort of prices


I will get. But first, I want to see how much it is actually worth.


My little 18 carat charm ways to put 69 grams and according to


today's prices, it is worth �59.60. When nine earrings way 3.76 grams


# She's a gold digger. And son it I sampled a dozen gold buyers around


Glasgow and the prices I got ranged from 50 to �90.


This man's shop give me one of the better prices, �48 when it was


valued at nearly 60. He agreed to explain what accounts for this


difference. We stand to make a margin but it is to cover costs and


we have to make a bit of profit, yes. But I think we are paying much


more than most and our training scheme has to be paid for, our


staff training, it is all time. The systems we set up in place and the


advice we give to customers, we have to be rewarded and am afraid


this is part of the way of doing it. It is all well and good taking your


gold to a shop where you can't walk out if you're not happy with the


price but what about the company's way you have to send your cold off?


The poorest prices are received were from online and postal cash


companies. One of them offered me a staggering �17 for my gold so just


what regulation is there to prevent people getting ripped off? As far


as am aware, there aren't. People can pick a price on the day or pick


a price depending on that customer which is very unfair. There should


be a published price on the day and the customers will understand they


have got a margin and that is why you why in business but there


should be a publish price so the guidelines are more clear to the


customers. In England and Wales, a code of conduct was launched last


week to try to self regulates the industry. It is something consumer


bodies would like to see adopted in Scotland. We would welcome any


regulation that makes sure that customers are protected in any


dealings they are having for the cash-for-gold industry. The


Scottish consumers may be worse off than English counterparts. But a


voluntary code may not work. We are aware that what we need to do is


give the voluntary code some time to be tested. That will see if it


makes that improvement. There will be concerns that because it is a


voluntary code, people who at the West End of practice are unlikely


to abide by it and then we would have to look at whether or not the


Government would introduced legislation to protect the public


more carefully. As the bill winds of the global economy and


increasing prosperity in India and China drive up demand for gold, one


thing is for sure - the scrap gold buying business is here to stay for


a while you it. And you can hear the documentary


about selling old gold on BBC Radio Scotland this afternoon at 4:30


four and also more on the BBC Scotland news website. Time for the


news with Gillian Smart. Good afternoon. 143 will back of


Scotland and NatWest bank branches have opened on a Sunday for the


first time -- well because, after a computer glitch. The technical


fault which has now been fixed let many people unable to use their


accounts. A backlog was cleared. Well Bank of Scotland said updating


customer accounts had taken longer than expected -- a Royal Bank of


Scotland. But the services may not resume properly until tomorrow.


Scottish shoppers may have to pay 5p for plastic bags and a so-called


bag tax which could raise �5 million for charity. The Scottish


Government is starting a three- month consultation on a range of


proposals looking to cut waste and protect the environment. Proceeds


of the bag tax would go to good causes after retailers have covered


their costs. We are finally seeing things settle


down after the wet and windy weather. Lot of Wendy weather but


also more cloud over northern areas we outbreaks of rain but that will


become more patchy through the day. Decent bulls of sunshine through


central and southern Scotland. We could see sharp showers to what


five and the east corner but it will feel pleasant in the sunshine.


-- to what five. Our next bulletin Think back to your last year at


school and perhaps you had an end of term disco or a ceilidh? Well


nowadays it's more likely to marked by an American-style prom -


complete with limousines, fancy clothes and tiaras. And it's not


just secondary schools who are glamming it up, primary schools are


doing it too. So as prom season is upon us our reporter Hayley Jarvis


asks if it's all just a bit of harmless fun?


Nicole is preparing for her big night, the high-school prom. I have


done my hair and make-up by has a new dress and shoes. Looking good


does not come cheap. The willingness to splash out on prom


night is proving to be big business. We first opened three years ago.


got one or two. Last year, there was an increase. This year, we had


about five in today and more at the weekend, it seems to be coming more


popular. Are you looking forward to it? It should be good. A glamorous


look for a glitzy occasion. No disco in the school hall for these


pupils, they have hired a hotel where they will have a three-course


meal before dancing the night away. A high-school people look forward


to it. It is the highlight of the year. A Until recently, the Prom


was an American event. It is as over-the-top as pupils would wanted


to be. We would find out if anybody was not coming because of the cost


and the school would help out in that case, without people knowing


about it. It is nice to see the picture, because then you can


visualise the kind of evening they had. Julie is researching the


impact of the growing number of Proms in Scotland and found 92% of


secondary schools had one last year. The inspectorate are into the pram


because they think it gives leadership skills to the children


and motivates them -- prom. In itself, I think it is a good thing.


The ritual of moving from one state to another state, the biggest


downside would be, I suppose, is where there is an excess in terms


of consumption. It appears that those attending are getting younger,


like these primary seven pupils. are using ceilidh music, but we are


dressing up. Lucky prom. It gives you a good feeling. -- like a prom.


The fact that the children refer to it as a prom, it is the


Americanisation of the dance and gradually that has become more of


an important thing for the children and families. For the school, it is


something we monitor carefully. If the balance was tipped, we would


have to address it. What is wrong with primary school pupils getting


some of the glamour of the prom? you do that at primary school, by


secondary school, Euro-X -- your expectations are increasing. Maybe


this then is increasing. This pupil and his friends wanted a limousine


for their high school prom, it was the only one left. If they become


increasingly lavish, how will pupils travel in a few years?


Perhaps a helicopter. One school has turned down a request for that.


Just before we go, BBC Scotland is looking for audience members for


Andrew Neil and Isabel Fraser with the latest political news, including an interview with the chief secretary to the treasury, Danny Alexander. Also in the programme, Respect MP, George Galloway and defence select committee member, Bob Stewart, go head-to-head on the future of the Falklands.

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