09/06/2013 Sunday Politics Scotland


Andrew Neil and Andrew Kerr are joined by Labour's Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls, with all the latest political news, interviews and debate.

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undercover journalists how he could help further the interests of the


arithmetical solar Power party. He denies breaking any rules.


Protests this week in Hertfordshire as the global heavyweights of


politics, business and the military meet behind closed doors in a luxury


hotel. The bosses of Google and Yahoo, we will discuss the


conspiracy theories and the reality. And here in Scotland - the Scottish


Conservatives met in Stirling this weekend to draw their battle lines


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2045 seconds


for the union, but what about the the whole thing. I have 3 million


radio listeners every day, which is a low number. I make films and put


them online for free like, and that is because of the establishment...


Ten years ago, I would have said, listen to all this stuff that he


believes that people put the cancer virus into vaccines in order to


create eugenics. I would have said that was mad. The problem is that


conspiracy theories like this are believed... Lesson, I am here to


warn people. Our government is building camps where they


disappeared people now. You have a rest for public safety unlike in


prison. You are the worst person I have ever interviewed. You are


watching the Sunday Politics. Welcome to Sunday Politics Scotland.


Coming up on the programme: Sink or swim - as the Tories meet in


Stirling, they're urged to follow their leader.


Will there be any last minute stay of execution for the local courts


recommended for closure? And how a play written for the last


King of Scotland is still raising political questions 500 years on.


A new phrase was coined in Scottish politics this weekend -


self-indulgent chihuahuas. That's how the former Conservative leader


Annabel Goldie described those taking swipes at her successor, Ruth


Davidson. Her critics weren't happy at the way she handled the debate


over more powers for Holyrood. Our political correspondent, Glenn


Campbell, was at the Tory conference in Stirling.


This is where Scotland spot for and secure its independence 700 years


ago. This weekend, the Conservatives have chosen to meet year-end


sterling to renew their opposition to independence and to step up their


fight to keep Scotland in the UK in the 21st-century. But while the


conference speeches have focused on the unity of the country, there are


signs of disunity within the country. Those like Lord Forsyth are


furious that Ruth Davidson has Utah on the powers of the Scottish


parliament and has set up a commission to see how it could be


extended. Others said she lacked the courage to hold a full debate on


devolution here that conference. has shown that weak leadership over


this issue and it would be much more forward looking to embrace the idea


of open debate on this issue and then people with robust views on


either side could make their views known. He was a strong supporter of


the leadership bid by model Fraser who has long supported Hollywood


raising more of the money it spends, which continues to be a source of


Tory divisions. Clear divisions between those like model Fraser who


have argued for fiscal autonomy and those who say that the new powers


are far too much and that has yet to be resolved. Ruth Davidson has


powerful supporters who gave her unscripted endorsements. I back her


every step of the way. I have every confidence that under your


leadership we will go from strength to strength. She is our special one,


though unelected leader. -- our elected. Annabel Goldie is said to


have dismissed the critics as self-indulgent Chihuahua owners. The


party chairman said the annual conference is never a loving.


not been to a Scottish Conservative party conference will there has not


been somebody complaining about something. It is the background


noise we have and I would rather we did not have it but I am very


accustomed to it. We have to focus on issues that matter to real people


and that is not the internal workings of the Conservative party.


Which is why Ruth Davidson spoke about education and caterers and her


confidence surveys. She also addressed new members of hard


devolution commission to devise Tory alternative is independence for


Scotland. With me in the studio is the Leader of the Scottish


Conservative, Ruth Davidson. Thank you for joining us. A lot of concern


about your decision not to the Labour Party members to debate the


constitution and more powers. that overshadow the conference?


There was lots of wide-ranging debate but the thing about debates


at confidence is you have to have a motion to debate on. You do not gain


anything by having Paul or opposites having a bit of a bunfight. We have


a huge range of views across party on the constitution and they have


tried to set up a serious commission were serious people working on it.


We can take soundings from all of our members and, with the package of


proposals. There are huge range of views and you used to have one view


on powers on Hollywood, your line in the sand, and a lot of disappointed


party members thought you would keep that. A lot of party members who


voted for Murdo Fraser, so perhaps a lot of disappointment in the party.


I was not always a full throated supporter of fiscal economy as Murdo


Fraser was. The debate has changed in Scotland than within the Scottish


Parliament. We have seen a majority government break the Parliament and


some of the oversight, so we have to look at some of the


responsibilities, but for me the important thing is that we have a


stable and devolved settlement for Scotland. If we win next year, what


we cannot have is the separatists coming back in five years or ten


years and asking for yet another referendum, because we do not have a


stable sense of government. I want the best proposals for how to meet


the aspirations of the people of Scotland. We have to find a


conservative way to deflect that's all we can have that stable set-up


and do not find ourselves in the set-up we have had again and again,


because that does not address the very important things for the people


of Scotland like education, that we want to talk about. Proposing more


powers for Scotland in the way you have done, your main backer, Lord


Forsyth, he was not even at the conference. Are you still on


speaking terms or have you apologised? I am still on speaking


terms, of course I am, but in terms of the phrasing, I have not proposed


new powers and have not put forward any limits or guidance. This is for


Lord Strathclyde and he will take people from the worlds of politics


and who are constitutional experts, and they will go off and do their


work. They will not be set goals by me. This is about serious people


doing work and coming up with proposals that we can take and adopt


as Conservatives. I am not saying that you are reading it but you seem


to give a definite example of what you would like. You got the biggest


cheer when you said you wanted to use those powers to lower tax.


tax-raising powers are coming already in 2016. The Parliament was


set up in 1989 with responsibility for around 10% of taxes but it has


responsibility for spending about 70%. The gap is wider than most


federal systems around the world, such as Germany or Canada. I am sure


that is in nearly other Lord Strathclyde will look at. The


changes in 2016 will bring back then but we have to look at the


mechanisms created and how we want to use them. I want to lower taxes


and have been saying that for more than a year now. Do we think the


powers that are coming are the correct balance of powers, the ones


that will be enacted in 2016, so that is one area I am sure we will


look at. I am not telling him what to do though. What about other


powers that could be devolved such as welfare benefits and cold weather


payments? I am not trying his hand is not pointing him in the direction


of results I want to see. This is about helping people who have real


experience and expertise in areas of politics and constitutional affairs,


so that we can find a be involved settlement that is stable. Surely


you will help to divide the commission and where they are going?


They have to get back to me before the referendum so they have a


timetable but I am letting them get on with their work and I look


forward to the report when it comes. You took such a pro-tax avoiding


stands, throwing the dead meat out to the traditional Tory supporters.


Were you saying they had to come with you and you had to modernise


the party? You were very firm with the party members. This is something


we introduced last year, our aspiration to bring taxation down by


1p in the pound. We have referred to it several times. It is no


Conservative party policy that we will work towards bringing forward


the reduction in taxation in the 2016 manifesto. In terms of the


party change, I have changed a lot. I have changed the way in which we


run and we are structured. Change can be painful and that can be


difficult but the reason I have made these changes is to make us a much


better fighting machine so we are able to take forward the policy


provisions. Yes, I was telling people that I understand the


concerns but look at election results. Goodness knows we need to


have some changes to make ourselves a feather force. On the policy of


school vouchers, it sounded pretty radical. Is this not going to


destroy the education system? the things I referred to is where


our children are being failed. Where one third are weak or


unsatisfactory, you have two address the problem. We think choice is the


best way to address that and we said we wanted to give schools the


opportunity to opt out of local authority control. We wanted other


establishments to be able to set up through philanthropists or other


organisations so there would be diversity. The logical extension is


to allow parents to move between these different models. Having the


money following the Child is a system that works. If you think of


the system in Denmark, they have a voucher system as do the Netherlands


and Sweden. It is not new but it is something that I think is the next


logical extension, to a low parents to choose the model that best suits


their child. Demonstators gathered outside Holyrood this week demanding


a reprieve for the ten Sheriff Courts ear-marked for closure. MSPs


on the Justice committee will vote on the issue on Tuesday. The move is


designed to save millions of pounds. Critics say it brings down the gavel


on 500 years of local justice. Our home affairs correspondent Reevel


Alderson has more. This Sheriff Court to cheer its last case in


November if the proposal is going to go ahead. It is one of ten new


foreclosure. The Courts service says there is very little business in


Kirkcudbright. In 2012 there were just seven trials were evidence was


heard. 22 summary trials and 127 civil cases. When others close it


good bring about travel problems for many of the accused. A lot of


witnesses and accused in courts need to use public transport so they will


be the most affected by this. these heard budget cuts and capital


spending going down were driving these reforms. Scotland's most


senior judge told the Justice committee there was more to than


that. It is a good case for having centres of specialisation and


excellence and for making the most efficient use of resources that you


can. The government insists closures could actually improve the


administration of justice in Scotland. Many of Scotland's courts


are not fit for justice in the 21st century, this is a better use of the


shrinking budget to concentrate funds on a smaller number of


well-equipped courts. In all, ten Sheriff Courts are scheduled to be


closed with those transferred to another court in the area. Cases


from Arbroath, as an example, we'll go to for further. Haddington's


business in East Lothian will be sent to Edinburgh Sheriff Court


while Dumfries will always with cases heard in Dumfries. The SNP


majority in the Justice committee could see these proposals going


through. Kenny McAskill is away this weekend saw to discuss this we have


Lewis McDonald in our Aberdeen studio and in Edinburgh the SNP's


Christine DeLeon. First to lose my Donald in Aberdeen. -- Graham. We


need to save money and the example is that business could be used to


where there is not enough business going on. We now that Aberdeen


Sheriff Court is missing its target of dealing with trials in 16 weeks


by a hall seven-week. Almost 50% short of what it should be achieving


because it has too much business going on and it cannot deal with


what it has. The idea that we close and neighbouring court and mood that


business to Aberdeen clearly will have an effect. This is a complete


misconception on which these proposals are based. It has been


said that Aberdeen could almost do with the work away. Is this


something you are choosing to focus on because you can attack the women


next to you on this? She said last week she had not made up her mind so


I will try on Tuesday to persuade her. I think the situation of


Aberdeen and Stonehaven could be repeated up and down the country.


Closing date will and using Inverness and double peak times


there. The same effect is what will improve the efficiency of the courts


and what will make it worse? We think many of these proposals will


simply make things worse. You are in a difficult position here, on


Tuesday you were convened, you can speak freely now, what is your


edition? -- what is your position? think it would be wrong to close ten


Sheriff Courts when this is the position that I should just defend


my own particular area. I will make my decision based on the evidence


that comes before the committee. Unfortunately Lewis McDonald left


before the senior judge in Scotland gave his evidence. We questioned him


thoroughly on whether this would be a detriment to access to justice and


he said that was not the case, it is a way forward. We must make these


decisions based on the evidence and the debate next week, that is


exactly what I will do. As a good constituency MSP I take it you have


in lobbying Kenny McAskill? I wanted to make sure that people did not


have its business going to Edinburgh, I have campaigned for


Abdallah Justice Centre and I think that should take place, I hope it


will. -- I Dalla justice centre. -- Gala. They must weigh the evidence


and I fully understand the position, the Scottish Court service and the


judge in Scotland who is at the top of the tree, his evidence must be


looked at when people decide to to make their vote. The SNP have a


majority in the committee. We have yet to hear from SNP members what


they will do. We know that when the Labour Party put down a debate for


this last month there was a split. There is a lot still to leave for. I


was in the committee invite when the judge gave his evidence and he said


these changes were driven by a desire to save costs. You did not


stay to question him. I did, one of my colleagues may have left when you


thought I did. It has instead that Haddington Sheriff Court is so keen


to be kept open that there will be alternative ways to pay for the


running cost. On that point, Christine? I am very sympathetic but


we have to look at the fight, there was a comment made in the clip about


access to justice, we are going to be using more videoconferencing so


the people of Stonehaven can give their evidence through video link to


Aberdeen Sheriff Court. I apologise, Lewis, I actually think you did stay


and it was your colleague who left. People are attached to courts, is


that true? It is not like your local library or health centre, able


really see the inside of the court. People perhaps merely wished to see


the inside of the court but people do value the access of the community


to justice. I think everyone values the fact that justices to be done in


the leases where the crimes have been committed. I think there is a


significant year for local communities. Will there be a


reprieve? I do not know, there is a lot still to be said, I hope people


will base their evidence -- the decisions on the evidence. That is


all you can do when you are on a committee. Coming up after the


news, what relevance does the 16th century we have on a country in a


countdown to an independence referendum? We will find out coming


up after the news from London. You are watching Sunday politics


Scotland from the BBC. Now we will cross to Tim Wilcox and after that


Reporting Scotland W Stewart. -- to clarify how much people know


about evidence gathered by an American spy firm via the biggest


Internet companies. It has been said people should not worry about being


spied on. I authorise operations most days of the week by this


organisation so I know how they work. The idea that they are sitting


working out how to circumnavigate UK law is fanciful and nonsense. I


think I can give the poor that assurance. -- give people that


assurance. Tim you'll was secretly filmed by Sunday Times investigators


posing as staff from a green energy company looking to hire him. He said


he posed as someone getting evidence for the committee. An MP and


committee chairman across the table from undercover reporters, another


set of lobbying allegations. Were you able to ask him questions


afterwards? I told him in advance what to say. He denies the claims


and was due to go on television to talk about this until he changed his


mind. Earlier this morning Tim you'll agreed to do a live interview


with us but just in the last hour he ruled out citing node reasons. David


Cameron once famously said lobbying with ED next big scandal and has


promised a new law to set up a registry of lobbyists for the end of


July. The problem for him is well this end the undercover reporters


with secret cameras? Nelson Mandela has been receiving treatment for a


long condition. He remains stable. Let's go to our reporter in


Pretoria, what is the latest on his condition? We are waiting for the


health up eight from the Edison -- presidency here. Nelson Mandela's


doctors have not announced any major changes since yesterday. There are


reports that some of his close relatives have been into hospital


here to see him. There is no sense of a bedside vigil. Many South


Africans are urging him to fight on what also you get the sense that


many people are very aware that he is old and frail. The rad


increasingly discussions about the need for nature to take its course


and for Nelson Mandela to be allowed to rest and enjoy his last days or


is or however long it is in Nice. -- in peace. That is all from me for


now. An investigation is underway into the cost of a fire at


construction site of Glasgow Hydro into the site at the River Clyde.


The operators of the �125 million venue said it was too early to


assess the impact of the fire. Yesterday afternoon flames were seen


coming from the edge of the domed roof of the building. Firefighters


were called to the scene. Hospital staffing levels are to be


boosted by the addition of more than a dozen new consultants across


Scotland. 14 full-time posts and four part-time jobs are being


created with a �3 million fund set up by the Scottish Government. The


positions will run for the next three years, divided amongst all


health boards except Shetland, Orkney and the Western Isles.


Now for the forecast with Judith and we should see some breaks in


with our next bulletin at 6:10pm this evening. I'll hand you back now


to Andrew. A rarely performed 16th century


morality tale about good governance may not seem relevant to 21st


century audiences. But the team behind a new production of The


Satire of the Three Estates beg to differ.


There's much than satire to Sir David Lyndsay's famous play, .


is a corrupt elite and when they call up Parliament, they ask the


common man in and they come in and say, this is what happens to us in


the Parliament not only lessons but enacts laws and makes changes in


order that the pool of people are no longer tour. It is a revolutionary


play. It is also really confirmed. This famous revival in 1948 was the


first in centuries. The scale of the show with its huge cast and six hour


running time our old barriers. The player returns to win it first began


as a piece of entertainment for James Fett. -- James V. It is the


only surviving play from Renaissance Scotland. There is one from much


later but imagine if we do not have any Shakespeare or anything else.


This does for Scotland what Shakespeare and all the rest do for


Britain. Even for those who have been in previous productions, this


is an important production at an important moment. It is about a BB


King who has to be taught how to govern as a theatre and political


king. The places get to him first. -- vices. With the referendum coming


up on independence, he could not detect a better time. The questions


it asks about government and identity remain as relevant today


almost 500 years on. So who has been making the news in


politics? Let's take a look at that now.


With me in the studio to discuss the week that was and what's in store


next week, author and commentator, David Torrance and the blogger


Stephen Gethins. Let's pick up on our interview with


Ruth Davidson. She is making the newspapers today, rather


eye-catching, down but not out. You were that conference this weekend,


what was the atmosphere like? pretty downbeat. The attendance was


small. The venue seems to get smaller every year and there was an


overwhelming sense of a party going through the motions. Even the Prime


Minister's appearance was perfunctory. Her speech, even though


there was good stuff in it, the crucial section explaining to the


party about why she has gone down the path of more powers was met with


silence. You are obviously watching this from a slightly different


perspective. What did you make of how the Scottish Conservatives that


this? The Tories seems to be all over the place because they have a


membership who do not want to move and a party that is very unpopular.


I find it remarkable that the big attraction was Alistair Darling, who


thinks their economic policies are mad. The three unionist parties are:


Listening around for other powers and it is interesting how far they


have gone down that road? Is a tablet? They have given a very clear


is the year on where we are going with the independence referendum.


The other parties are struggling by saying that the status quo was not


very good but they are not seeing what the alternative is. They seem


to be hiding behind the commission but we have had lots of commissions.


We are never quite sure what is going to come up. Stephen mention


the appearance of Alistair Darling. Did you stay for that? It was the


highlight of the conference. The SNP had been relentlessly press


releasing us saying he would be the darling of the conference and was


through! It says a lot that the highlight was a former Labour


Chancellor but he did a good pitch launching forces together as a


subset of the better together campaign. He wants to send a signal


that he does not really like Tories even if he was speaking at the


conference. There were a lot of banks from the SNP but they are


saying that it is cross-party. -- digs. This politician said the Tory


economic policy was absolutely mad but he wants them to keep deciding


on the policy for Scotland! It is still a bit rich. I have a clear


memory of the Scottish Parliament when the SNP worked closely with the


Scottish Conservatives, who helped them to pass for budgets, so the


idea it is only Labour and the Lib Dems who are in cahoots is


ridiculous. The public like to see politicians working together. There


was a minority government and I was a special adviser, and you work


across parties. Mainly with the Tories. One final thought, it is an


anniversary this year. The 1980s the election was one of the great


turning points in UK politics. -- 1983. That was when Labour knew they


had to change. Talking to Scottish Tories, they had 21 MPs and about


29% of the vote in Scotland but compare that to know. David makes up


the point. The last election when the Tories did any good in Scotland.


It is notable for that fact. Anyone in the recent intake we might back


years? In Westminster? There are a lot of great figures such as Greg


the climate who is currently pensions spokesman. Who is currently


pensions spokesman. There are a few that are prominent but I am not sure


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