27/10/2013 Sunday Politics Scotland


Andrew Neil and Andrew Kerr with the latest political news, interviews and debate. With Lord Heseltine and shadow energy secretary Caroline Flint.

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Morning, folks. Welcome to the Sunday Politics. Hope you enjoyed


the extra hour in bed and that you've realise it's not quarter to


one. It's quarter to 12! It's getting stormy outside. But


they're already battening down the hatches at Number ten because


coalition splits are back, with bust-ups over free schools and power


bills. We'll speak to the Lib Dems and ask Labour who's conning whom


over energy. EU leaders have been meeting in


Brussels. But how's David Cameron getting on with that plan to change


our relationship with Europe. We were there to ask him.


Have we got any powers back yet? Foreign companies own everything


from our energy companies to our railways. Does it matter who owns


our businesses? Union boss Bob Crow and venture capitalist Julie Meyer


go head to head. And here on Sunday Politics


Scotland. More on the questions surrounding the role unions play in


today's workforce - could this week's events at Grangemouth signal


a sea change? pace?


And with me, three journalists who've bravely agreed to hunker down


in the studio while Britain braces itself for massive storm winds,


tweeting their political forecasts with all the accuracy of Michael


Fish on hurricane watch. Helen Lewis, Janan Ganesh and Nick Watt.


Now, sometimes coalition splits are over-egged, or dare we say even


occasionally stage-managed. But this week, we've seen what looks like the


genuine article. It turns out Nick Clegg has his doubts about the


coalition's flagship free schools policy. David Cameron doesn't much


like the green levies on our energy bills championed by the Lib Dems.


Neither of them seems to have bothered to tell the other that they


had their doubts. Who better to discuss these flare-ups than Lib Dem


Deputy Leader Simon Hughes? He joins me now. Welcome. Good morning. The


Lib Dems spent three years of sticking up for the coalition when


times were grim. Explain to me the logic of splitting from them when


times look better. We will stick with it for five years. It is


working arrangement, but not surprisingly, where there right


areas on which we disagree over where to go next, we will stand up.


It is going to be hard enough for the Lib Dems to get any credit for


the recovery, what ever it is. It will be even harder if you seem to


be semidetached and picky. The coalition has led on economic


policy, some of which were entirely from our stable. The one you have


heard about most often, a Lib Dem initiative, was to take people on


blowing comes out of tax. The recovery would not have happened,


there would not have been confidence in Britain, had there not been a


coalition government with us in it, making sure the same policies


produced fair outcomes. We are not going to leave the credit for any


growth - and there has been very good news this week. We have played


a part in that, and without us, it would not have happened. Does it not


underline the trust problem you have? You promised to abolish


tuition fees. You oppose nuclear power, now you are cheerleading the


first multi-billion pounds investment in nuclear generation.


You are dying out on your enthusiasm on green levies, and now they are up


for renegotiation. Why should we trust a word you say? In relation to


green levies, as you well know, just under 10% is to do with helping


energy and helping people. Unless there is continuing investment in


renewables, we will not have the British produced energy at cheaper


cost to keep those bills down in the future. At cheaper cost? Explain


that to me. Off-shore energy is twice the market rate. The costs of


renewables will increasingly come down. We have fantastic capacity to


produce the energy and deliver lots of jobs in the process. The parts of


the energy bill that may be up for renegotiation seems to be the part


where we subsidise to help either poor people pay less, or where we do


other things. Too insulated the homes? Are you up to putting that to


general taxation? Wouldn't that be progressive? I would. It would be


progressive. I would like to do for energy bills what the Chancellor has


done for road traffic users, drivers, which is too fuelled motor


fuel -- to freeze new to fall. That would mean there would be an


immediate relief this year, not waiting for the election. So there


is a deal to be done there? Yes. We understand we have to take the


burden off the consumer, and also deal with the energy companies, who


look as if they are not paying all the tax they should be, and the


regulator, which doesn't regulate quickly enough to deal with the


issues coming down the track. We can toughen the regulator, and I hope


that the Chancellor, in the Autumn statement, was signalled that energy


companies will not be allowed to get away with not paying the taxes they


should. And this deal will allow energy prices to come down? Yes. How


could David Laws, one of your ministers, proudly defend the record


of unqualified teachers working in free schools, and then stand


side-by-side with Mr Clegg, as he says he is against them? David Laws


was not proudly defending the fact that it is unqualified teachers. He


said that some of the new, unqualified teachers in free schools


are doing a superb job. But you want to get rid of them? We want to make


sure that everybody coming into a free school ends up being qualified.


Ends up? Goes through a process that means they have qualifications. Just


as we said very clearly at the last election that the manifesto


curriculum in free schools should be the same as other schools. It looks


like Mr Clegg is picking a fight just for the sake of it. Mr Clegg


was taught by people who didn't have teaching qualifications in one of


the greatest schools in the land, if not the world. It didn't seem to do


him any harm. What is the problem? If you pay to go to a school, you


know what you're getting. But that is what a free school is. No, you


don't pay fees. A free school is parents taking the decisions, not


you, the politicians. We believe they would expect to guarantee is,


firstly that the minimum curriculum taught across the country is taught


in the free schools, and secondly, that the teachers there are


qualified. Someone who send their kids to private schools took a


decision to take -- to send their children there, even if the teachers


were unqualified, because they are experts in their field. Someone who


send their kids to free schools is because -- is their decision, not


yours. Because some of the free schools are new, and have never been


there before, parents need a guarantee that there are some basics


in place, whatever sort of school. So they need you to hold their hand?


It is not about holding hands, it is about having a minimum guarantee.


Our party made clear at our conference that this is a priority


for us. Nick Clegg reflects the view of the party, and I believe it is an


entirely rational thing to do. Nick Clegg complained that the Prime


Minister gave him only 30 minutes notice on the Prime Minister Buzz 's


U-turn on green levies. That is almost as little time as Nick Clegg


gave the Prime Minister on his U-turn on free schools. Aren't you


supposed to be partners? Green levies were under discussion in the


ministerial group before Wednesday, because we identified this as an


issue. We do that in a practical way. Sometimes there is only half an


hour's notice. We had even less than half an hour this morning! Simon


Hughes, thank you. So the price of energy is the big


battle ground in politics at the moment. 72% of people say that high


bills will influence the way they vote at the next election. Ed


Miliband has promised a price freeze after the next election, but will


the coalition turned the tables on Labour, with its proposal to roll


back green levies. Caroline Flint joins us from Sheffield. It looks


like the coalition will be able to take ?50 of energy bills, by


removing green levies. It is quite clear that different parts of the


government are running round waking up to the fact that the public feel


that this government has not done enough to listen to their concerns.


Last week, there was a classic case of the Prime Minister making up


policy literally at the dispatch box. Let's see what they say in the


autumn statement. The truth is, whatever the debate around green


levies, and I have always said we should look at value for money at


those green levies. Our argument is about acknowledging there is


something wrong with the way the market works, and the way those


companies are regulated. Behind our freeze for 20 months is a package of


proposals to reform this market. I understand that, but you cannot tell


as the details about that. I can. You cannot give us the details about


reforming the market. We are going to do three things, and I think I


said this last time I was on the programme. First, we are going to


separate out the generation side from the supply side within the big


six. Secondly, we will have a energy pool, or power exchange, where all


energy will have to be traded in that pool. Thirdly, we will


establish a tougher regulator, because Ofgem is increasingly being


seen as not doing the job right. I notice that you didn't mention any


reform of the current green and social taxes on the energy bill. Is


it Labour's policy to maintain the existing green levies? In 2011, the


government chose to get rid of warm front, which was the publicly funded


through tracks a scheme to support new installation. When they got rid


of that, it was the first time we had a government since the 70s that


didn't have such a policy. What is your policy? We voted against that


because we believe it is wrong. We believe that the eco-scheme, a


government intervention which is ?47 of the ?112 on our bills each year,


is expensive, bureaucratic and isn't going to the fuel poor. I am up for


a debate on these issues. I am up for a discussion on what the


government should do and what these energy companies should do. We


cannot let Cameron all the energy companies off the hook from the way


in which they organise their businesses, and expect us to pay


ever increasing rises in our bills. There is ?112 of green levies on our


bills at the moment. Did you vote against any of them? We didn't, but


what I would say ease these were government imposed levies. When they


got rid of the government funded programme, Warm Front, they


introduced the eco-scheme. The eco-project is one of the ones where


the energy companies are saying, it's too bureaucratic, and it is


proving more expensive than government estimates, apparently


doubled the amount the government thought. These things are all worth


looking at, but don't go to the heart of the issue. According to


official figures, on current plans, which you support, which you voted


for, households will be paying 41% more per unit of electricity by


2030. It puts your temporary freeze as just a blip. You support a 41%


rise in our bills. I support making sure we secure for the future access


to energy that we can grow here in the UK, whether it is through


nuclear, wind or solar, or other technologies yet to be developed. We


should protect ourselves against energy costs we cannot control. The


truth is, it is every fair for you to put that point across, and I


accept that, but we need to hear the other side about the cost for bill


payers if we didn't invest in new, indigenous sources of energy supply


for the future, which, in the long run, will be cheaper and more


secure, and create the jobs we need. I think it is important to


have a debate about these issues, but they have to be seen in the


right context. If we stay stuck in the past, we will pay more and we


will not create jobs. How can you criticise the coalition's plans for


a new nuclear station, when jeering 13 years of a Labour government, you


did not invest in a single nuclear plant? You sold off all our nuclear


technology to foreign companies. Energy provision was put out to


private hands and there has been no obstacle in British law against


ownership outside the UK. Part of this is looking ahead. Because your


previous track record is so bad? What we did decide under the


previous government, we came to the view, and there were discussions in


our party about this, that we did need to support a nuclear future.


At the time of that, David Cameron was one of those saying that


nuclear power should be a last resort. And as you said, the


Liberals did not support it. We stood up for that. We set in train


the green light of 10 sites, including Hinkley Point, for


nuclear development. I am glad to see that is making progress and we


should make more progress over the years ahead. We took a tough


decision when other governments had not done. You did not build a new


nuclear station. When you get back into power, will you build HS2?


That has not had a blank cheque from the Labour Party. I am in


favour of good infrastructure. Are you in favour of?, answer the


question? I have answered the question. It does not have a blank


cheque. If the prices are too high, we will review the decision when we


come back to vote on it. We will be looking at it closely. We have to


look for value for money and how it benefits the country. Have you


stocked up on jumpers this winter? I am perfectly all right with my


clothing. What is important, it is ridiculous for the Government to


suggest that the answer to the loss of trust in the energy companies is


to put on another jumper. The coalition has taken a long time


to come up with anything that can trump Ed Miliband's simple freezing


energy prices, vote for us. Are they on the brink of doing so? I do


not think so. They have had a problem that has dominated the


debate, talking about GDP, the figures came out on Friday and said,


well, and went back to talking about energy. My problem with what


David Cameron proposes is he agrees with the analysis that the Big Six


make too many profits. He wants to move the green levies into general


taxation, so that he looks like he is protecting the profits of the


energy companies. If the coalition can say they will take money off


the bills, does that change the game? I do not think the Liberal


Democrats are an obstacle to unwinding the green levies. I think


Nick Clegg is open to doing a deal, but the real obstacle is the carbon


reduction targets that we signed up to during the boom years. They were


ambitious I thought at the time. From that we have the taxes and


clocking up of the supply-side of the economy. Unless he will revise


that, and build from first principles a new strategy, he


cannot do more than put a dent into green levies. He might say as I


have got to ?50 now and if you voters in in an overall majority, I


will look up what we have done in the better times and give you more.


I am sure he will do that. It might be ?50 of the Bill, but it will be


?50 on your general taxation bill, which would be more progressive.


They will find it. We will never see it in general taxation. The


problem for the Coalition on what Ed Miliband has done is that it is


five weeks since he made that speech and it is all we are talking


about. David Cameron spent those five weeks trying to work out


whether Ed Miliband is a Marxist or whether he is connected to Middle


Britain. That is why Ed Miliband set the agenda. The coalition are


squabbling among themselves, looking petulant, on energy, and on


schools. Nobody is taking notice of the fact the economy is under way,


the recovery is under way. Ed Miliband has made the weather on


this. It UK has a relaxed attitude about


selling off assets based -- to companies based abroad. But this


week we have seen the Swiss owner of one of Scotland's largest


industrial sites, Grangemouth, come within a whisker of closing part of


it down. So should we care whether British assets have foreign owners?


Britain might be a nation of homeowners, but we appear to have


lost our taste for owning some of our biggest businesses. These are


among the crown jewels sold off in the past three decades to companies


based abroad. Roughly half of Britain's essential services have


overseas owners. The airport owner, British Airports Authority, is


owned by a Spanish company. Britain's largest water company,


Thames, is owned by a consortium led by an Australian bank. Four out


of six of Britain's biggest energy companies are owned by overseas


giants, and one of these, EDF Energy, which is owned by the


French state, is building Britain's first nuclear power plant in a


generation, backed by Chinese investors. It's a similar story for


train operator Arriva, bought by a company owned by the German state.


So part of the railways privatised by the British government was


effectively re-nationalised by the German government. But does it


matter who owns these companies, as long as the lights stay on, the


trains run on time, and we can still eat Cadbury's Dairy Milk?


We are joined by the general secretary of the RMT, Bob Crow, and


by venture capitalist Julie Meyer. They go head to head.


Have we seen the consequences of relying for essential services to


be foreign-owned? Four of the Big Six energy companies, Grangemouth,


owned by a tax exile in Switzerland. It is not good. I do not think


there is a cause and effect relationship between foreign


ownership and consumer prices. That is not the right comparison. We


need to be concerned about businesses represented the future,


businesses we are good at innovating for example in financial


services and the UK has a history of building businesses, such as


Monotypes. If we were not creating businesses here -- Monotise. Like


so many businesses creating products and services and creating


the shareholders. Should we allow hour essential services to be in


foreign ownership? It was demonstrated this week at


Grangemouth. If you do not own the industry, you do not own it. The


MPs of this country and the politicians in Scotland have no say,


they were consultants. Multinationals decide whether to


shut a company down. If that had been Unite union, they are the ones


who saved the jobs. They capitulated. They will come back,


like they have for the past 150 years, and capture again what they


lost. If it had closed, they would have lost their jobs for ever. If


the union had called the members up without a ballot for strike action,


there would have been uproar. This person in Switzerland can decide to


shut the entire industry down. The coalition, the Labour Party, as


well, when Labour was in government, they played a role of allowing


industries to go abroad, and it should be returned to public


ownership. Nestor. It has demonstrated that the Net comes


from new businesses. We must not be... When Daly motion was stopped


by the French government to be sold, it was an arrow to the heart of


French entrepreneurs. We must not create that culture in the UK.


Every train running in France is built in France. 90% of the trains


running in Germany are built in Germany. In Japan, it has to be


built in that country, and now an energy company in France is


reducing its nuclear capability in its own country and wants to make


profits out of the British industry to put back into it state industry.


That happened with the railway industry. They want to make money


at the expense of their own state companies. We sold off energy


production. How did we end up in a position where our nuclear capacity


will be built by a company owned by a socialist date, France, and


funded by a communist one, China, for vital infrastructure? I am not


suggesting that is in the national interest. I am saying we can pick


any one example and say it is a shame. The simple matter of the


fact is the owners are having to make decisions. Not just


Grangemouth, businesses are making decisions about what is the common


good. Not just in the shareholders' interest. For employees, customers.


What is in the common good when prices go up by 10% and the reason


is that 20 years ago they shut every coal pit down in this country,


the Germans kept theirs open and subsidised it and now we have the


Germans doing away with nuclear power and they have coal. Under the


Labour government, in 2008, the climate change Act was passed. Well


before that, and you know yourself, they shut down the coal mines to


smash the National Union of Mineworkers because they dared to


stand up for people in their community. Even if we wanted to


reopen the coalmines, it would be pointless. Under the 2008 Act, we


are not meant to burn more coal. The can, as if you spent some of


the profits, you could have carbon catch up. That does not exist on a


massive scale. You are arguing the case, Julie Meyer, for


entrepreneurs to come to this country. Even Bob Crow is not


against that. We are trying to argue, should essential services be


in foreign hands? Not those in Silicon round about doing start-ups.


I am trying to draw a broader principle than just energy.


Something like broadband services, also important to the functioning


of the economy. I believe in the UK's ability to innovate. When we


have businesses that play off broadband companies to get the best


prices for consumers. These new businesses and business models are


the best way. Not to control, but to influence. It will be a disaster.


Prices will go up and up as a result. Nissan in Sunderland, a


Japanese factory, some of the best cars and productivity. You want


that to be nationalised and bring it down to the standard of British


Leyland? It is not bring it down to the standard. The car manufacturing


base in this country has been wrecked. We make more cars now for


20 years -- than in 20 years. Ford's Dagenham produced some of


the best cars in the world. Did you buy one? I cannot drive. They moved


their plants to other countries, where it was cheaper labour. Would


you nationalise Nissan? There should be one car industry that


produces cars for people. This week the EU summit was about Angela


Merkel's mobile phone being tapped, they call it a handy. We sent Adam


to Brussels and told him to ignore the business about phone-tapping


and investigate the Prime Minister's policy on Europe instead.


I have come to my first EU summit to see how David Cameron is getting on


with his strategy to claim power was back from Brussels. Got any powers


back yet? Yes! Which ones? Sadly, his fellow leaders were not as


forthcoming. Chancellor, are you going to give any powers back to


Britain? Has David Cameron asked you for any powers back? The president


of the commission just laughed, and listen to the Lithuanian President.


How is David Cameron's renegotiation strategy going? What's that? He


wants powers back for Britain. No one knows what powers David Cameron


actually wants. Even our usual allies, like Sweden, are bit


baffled. We actually don't know yet what is going through the UK


membership. We will await the finalisation of that first. You


should ask him, and then tell us! Here is someone who must know, the


Dutch Prime Minister, he is doing what we are doing, carrying out a


review of the EU powers, known as competencies in the jargon, before


negotiating to get some back. Have you had any negotiations with David


Cameron over what powers you can bring back from Brussels? That is


not on the agenda of this summit. Have you talked to him about it?


This is not on the schedule for this summit.


David Cameron's advises tummy it is because he is playing the long game.


-- David Cameron's advisers tell me. At this summit, there was a task


force discussing how to cut EU red tape. Just how long this game is was


explained to me outside the summit, by the leader of the Conservatives


in the European Parliament. I think the behind-the-scenes negotiations


will start happening when the new commissioner is appointed later next


year. I think the detailed negotiations will start to happen


bubbly after the UK general election. That is when we will start


getting all of the detail of the horse trading, and real, Lake night


negotiations. Angela Merkel seems keen to rewrite the EU's main


treaties to deal with changes in the Eurozone, and that is the mechanism


David Cameron would use to renegotiate our membership. Everyone


here says his relationship with the German Chancellor is strong. So


after days in this building, here is how it looks. David Cameron has a


mountain to climb. It is climbable, but he isn't even in the foothills


yet. Has he even started packing his bags for the trip?


Joining us now, a man who knows a thing or two about the difficulties


Prime Minister 's face in Europe. Former Deputy Prime Minister,


Michael Heseltine. We are nine months from David Cameron's defining


speech on EU renegotiation. Can you think of one area of progress? I


don't know. And you don't know. And that's a good thing. Why is it a


good thing? Because the real progress goes on behind closed


doors. And only the most naive, because the real progress goes on


behind You are much better off making


progress the best you can in the privacy. It is a long journey ahead.


Do you have a clear sense of the destination? No. I have a clear


sense of the destination which is the victor the key will win to stay


inside the European community. I of course have total support for that.


If he is incapable of getting any tangible sign of the negotiation and


is able to do only what Harold Wilson don't in 1975 which is


getting a couple of talking changes, he goes on to the referendum without


much to answer for, doesn't he? He has everything to argue for. He has


Britain's vital role as a major contributor and beneficiary. He has


the vital role of the city of London. He could argue for that now.


He doesn't want to have a referendum now and I have no doubt he will come


back with something to talk about. It may be slightly different to what


his critics, the UK isolationists, want. He may have found allies


within the community want change as well. He may secure changes the way


the community works, which would be a significant argument within the


referendum campaign. As an example, I happen to think it is a scandal


the European commission do not secure the auditing of some of the


accounts. Perhaps that could be on the agenda. He might find a lot of


contributing countries, like Germany and Holland, might be very keen. We


saw the other day he vetoed the increase in the European budget and


he had a lot of allies, so working within Europe or the things the


people want is fertile ground in my view.


Is John Major right to call for a windfall tax on the energy


companies? Here's a very cautious Philip Hollobone does not say things


thinking about. -- -- cautious fellow. It is pretty difficult to


predict what the consequences would be. I am myself more interested in


the other part of his speech which was speaking about the need for the


Conservatives to seek a wider horizon and recognise what is


happening to the party and the way in which its membership is


shrinking. I take it you are not for a windfall tax? I am not in favour


of increasing taxes anywhere. Do you shear scepticism on Iain Duncan


Smith's ability to succeed with welfare reform? I think he is right


and I indeed wrote a pamphlet in the 1980s called no place for hostages


arguing for what he is now trying to do. -- ostriches. He is right to try


this and public opinion is behind him but it is not easy because on


the fringe of these issues, there are genuine hard luck stories and


these are the ones that become the focus for attention and it requires


a lot of political skill to negotiate through that. Is he right


to invoke the beverage principle that you should be expected to make


a contribution? -- Beveridge. We will let you get your Sunday lunch.


Good afternoon and welcome to Sunday Politics Scotland. Coming up on the


programme. Grangemouth over the past week has


captivated the country. We will be examining the future role of unions


in industrial relations. We'll weigh that up with a panel of people


who've discussed and debated the place of unions in Scotland for


several decades. And a win in Dunfermline for Scottish Labour -


we'll speak to their leader Johann Lamont about how the party plans to


capitalise on the victory. Scotland's biggest industrial


complex was close to collapse this week, saved at the eleventh hour by


the total capitulation of a once powerful, unionised workforce. There


were certainly echoes of the 1970s in the Grangemouth dispute, but


Unite the union was overwhelmed by the hardline tactics of 21st century


mobile capital. Politicians were virtually powerless too in the face


of this emerging phenomenon. As Andrew Kerr reports, industrial


relations may never be the same again.


The spear Grangemouth this week with 800 workers having to tell their


families they were probably out of a job. People will probably never


forget these events but there's a more positive outcome. A more


harmonious relationship has been re-established here at Grangemouth.


Really for the workers and now perhaps recriminations against the


union. They marched their members up to the top of the hell but had to


march back down again. Ineos wanted the other way and were prepared to


take the sanction. Those are the methods of multinationals playing a


global game. We want to see a long-term future for Grangemouth. We


should be talking about them about the levels of long-term investment.


Not just intent on a fight. The world has moved on from the 1970s.


It certainly has. Look at the deal struck if you can even call it that.


They agreed to a three-year pay freeze with no strikes, closure of


the final salary pension scheme and no full-time union conveners. The


union was over a barrel this week, a far cry from these days. There will


be no vandalism, there will be no bevvying! They were dealing with


Ineos this time. If they had watched what was happening over the years,


this is a business that has had to deal with international bankers and


won that round. It clearly was signalling there were problems and


we have not been listening hard enough to understand how important


it was to accept the changes which are facing most people in Scotland


today. Some Labour MPs have been defending the union but whether the


tactics were hardline and uncompromising. We can only


represent the members we are representing at that time. We had


our members faced with three days to make key decisions on really radical


changes to terms and conditions. That probably means an emasculated


union at Grangemouth but it seems there's still a for them and perhaps


one more powerful. Any union has an important part to play and has two


learn the lessons of what did not work but I imagine any management


would want to make sure of that as well because it is an easy and


powerful way to get through to the staff of what needs to happen. I


imagine they will want to make union relationships work as well. Jim


Ratcliffe has called for the UK to the former Labour relations. The


question now is how many other employers have been watching this


dispute with interest wondering how far they can now push the unions.


Joining me now in the studio to discuss the fall out from last weeks


events - former Falkirk West Labour MP and later, Independent MSP,


Dennis Canavan and Chris Bartter who was with Unison Scotland for 20


years. And in our Edinburgh studio, Alan Cochrane, Scottish Editor of


the Daily Telegraph. Good afternoon. As the dust settles,


who was to blame? Now was not the time for recriminations. I had the


privilege of representing the Falkirk area for over 30 years and


many of my former constituents are employed at Grangemouth. They are


not militant extremists. Where they misled? I do not like the way they


and the trade union movement have been demonised by certain elements


in the media and certain politicians. These people by and


large are responsible citizens and employees and trade unionists. I


think the officials of the trade union in retrospect could say things


should have been handled better. That is all well in hindsight but


they were up against a ruthless and intransigent employer who was not


coming clean with the workforce, and we are where all sorts of


allegations coming out. Jim Ratcliffe was saying they are to be


honest about the finances. That is what was lacking all along, the lack


of honesty and transparency on behalf of the employer, and I think


there would have been a better and there weren't, had we had there been


transparency. Was the union demonised? I was astonished when you


said this was a case when the union was overwhelmed by 20th-century


mobile capitalism. They were overwhelmed by a union that walked


straight into a trap. The management wanted to change these working


practices and instead of arguing about the practices, the union


decided to fight a stupid 1970s battle about political power way or


the convener, according to the evidence amassed, he was spending a


quarter of his time trying to organise or fix a constituency


Labour Party selection. That is nothing to do with trade unions as


we understand them now. What about wages and conditions? This is what


the union chose to fight. This was a unique situation in terms of


industrial relations what the company controlled by one powerful


man, so negotiation would be very different to what you would normally


expect? Probably most trade union negotiations traditionally have not


been done like this. They usually negotiate collectively but this was


not like that at all. I also have felt that the attitudes to the trade


unions over the last week or so has been quite disgraceful from some


quarters of the media. They are the victims here. Have they served their


members well when you look at the outcome? I think the situation with


the union is that you have to remember the union is its members in


this sense. They vote for strike action over the attacks on wages and


conditions was an 82% of vote on an 86% return. The decision to go back


and accept the ultimatum from Jim Ratcliffe was a workforce decision.


You are shaking your head? Everyone seems to be forgetting the initial


strike was called over speedy deans but I agree, this dispute shows


Scotland on both sides in a very bad light. -- Stevie Deans. I have


spoken to outsiders involved in these negotiations and they have all


been astonished by the level of personal animosity between the shop


floor and the management. It was poisonous. It was a stupid union


dealing with management levels which were impenetrable. They could not


work out what the management structure was and everything had to


go back to Jim Ratcliffe, but instead of fighting that battle,


they wanted to fight on deans. What does this tell us about union


relations going forward? The positive part of this outcome was


that thousands of jobs have been saved, although belatedly. The


negative part is the management and the order still seem intent on


victimising the workforce. -- and Jim Ratcliffe. They are now coming


up with suggestions that people that voted against the company proposal


should get a worse deal on pensions than people who voted for it. If


ever there is a way to continue the acrimony and bad industrial


relations, that is the way to do it. Scotland is light years behind some


other countries in terms of industrial democracy. Look at


Denmark and Sweden and other Scandinavian countries. Look at


Germany, even. Workers have more salient in planning and investment


decisions of their companies and instead of this silly confrontation,


you get more of a cooperation and better productivity. Looking for


work, what we need to say is it wasn't just the workforce, it was


also politicians and communities in Scotland that had the gun held to


his head. Would he not argue it is has money? He is going to borrow


money from here... He now has the UK government to give a loan guarantee.


If he defaults, it is us that had to pay it back, so he has actually


helped that loaded gun across the board to all of us and walked away.


I worry considerably that the 25 years future that was spoken of in


the press yesterday by the company and politicians will only last as


long as the next demand. It will work in Scotland, it will work only


if they give up this idea they can run political parties as well. Ed


Miliband is trying to distance himself, you cannot have the union


at a loss-making plant spending a quarter of its time fiddling a


selection conference. That is not the way to get worker representation


on board. These allegations have not been proven. We need to look at


governmental responsibility and taxpayers money going into these


companies. The UK government have put a loan guarantee of ?125


million, the Scottish government regional development assistance of


?9 million. That is a lot of taxpayers money, and in return I


think both governments should use that money is leveraged to ensure


that the company treats its workers in a more responsible way. Corporate


responsibility is something very lacking in companies like INEOS. If


there was more a responsibility to their workforce, I think the trade


unions would respond in a more responsible way. Thank you all for


coming in to speak to us today. Labour won the Scottish Parliament


by-election. A 7% swing from the Nationalists. What does this tell us


about the political education in Scotland? If it's just a blip for


Alex Salmond? Labour has been the dominant force


in Dunfermline since the creation of the Scottish parliament, but that


hold was broken in 2011 when Bill Walker secured a victory for the


SNP. This week's by-election was


triggered by his resignation after he was thrown out by his party and


jailed for domestic abuse. It was a campaign fought on local issues, not


least proposed school closures. The SNP had the best-known candidate and


focused on national policies like the council tax freeze. But mid-term


votes tend to be unkind to those in government, and so it was in


Dunfermline. The SNP's share of the vote fell by 7%, the Lib Dems were


down 8%. Labour's candidate, she claimed her victory reflected the


public's frustration with the referendum campaign.


I will repay your trust in me after the disgrace of Bill Walker,


Dunfermline deserves better and I will ensure that we will be far


better than what went before. Dunfermline has sent a message to


Alex Salmond, it is time for you to concentrate on the real priorities


of Scottish people not your constitutional obsession. That is a


sentiment shared by her party's leadership. But what does the


success mean for the bigger battles which lie ahead?


The leader of Scottish Labour is with me now. Let me ask you about


Grangemouth, as we were discussing that. How well did Scottish


ministers handle the situation? I was very pleased the Scottish and UK


government came together to solve this problem. At the very heart of


this was a workforce and community in shock and treated very badly. I


was very glad the government came together to secure the jobs for


those people and their families and the broader UK economy. If I was in


the privilege -- privileged position of government my focus would have


been on the implications for those families and the Scottish economy.


We would work to do whatever we could to make sure those jobs were


secure. As regards the situation which has emerged which started with


Stephen Denes and his role in the Falkirk selection. There is a


newspaper story today which said e-mails have been handed in to the


police suggesting dirty tricks in terms of getting people to withdraw


allegations, is it time for Ed Miliband to look into this again? I


have not seen the e-mails, but if they are serious allegations they


need to be looked at. I'm determined to make sure we look at an open


process for selection and select a candidate who will represent labour


and stand up for the people of Falkirk. That needs to be the focus


in the coming period. Where the process is wrong up until now? The


investigation by the party looked at the scale of the challenge. People


were expressing concerns about Falkirk, and I'm determined the


Labour Party is open and transparent. It is not a plaything


of individual groupings. The message for me is that if anyone believes


the big battle in the Labour Party is to get selected, they are sending


out the wrong message. You cannot presume people's support. I am


determined we are very clear, the main thing we do is go out to speak


to people, listen to their concerns and stand up for them. Any


presumption we take the voters for granted is entirely unacceptable.


You one in Dunfermline, but if that was replicated across Scotland you


still would not be able to overturn the SNP's majority. In your desire


to be First Minister and for your party to lead this country, do you


accept it might take two general elections to do that? There is this


recognition, even with a 7% swing, that perhaps we would almost be the


biggest party. It tells us that scale of the challenge ahead of us.


We have made very good progress from a very difficult stage. I said the


Labour Party would change, we would win back the support of the people


of Scotland. That is a work in progress. I am not complacent about


this. We will be credible and competitive, and Alex Salmond may,


through arithmetic, establish you doing OK. What he is doing is


ignoring the mesh -- the message being given to him. People are


concerned Alex Salmond is not representing and doing his job.


By-elections rarely changed anything, and the most recent poll


showed 57% support for the first in a strand the government in what they


are doing. Even at this stage they seem to be doing well in the eyes of


the public. It does not feel like that to me. The SNP have failed to


win any by-elections since 2012. The people of Scotland are saying to


Alex Salmond, do your day job. Tell us what you think about


independence, but at the same time, what can you do in terms of creating


economic opportunities? What can you be doing about making our education


system better? What can you do about the care situation with too many


people left isolated in their own home? Can people legitimately say of


you and your party, we know what you are against? You are against


independence, the bedroom tax, what are you for? We have a long process


to go through. It is about rebuilding trust. We do need to talk


much more positively about the kind of Scotland we want to see. What are


the issues you are for? Education and opportunity. The fact that too


many of our young people's life decisions are determined by a young


age. What is happening in terms of colleges and carer. These are big


issues we could be addressing cross party in Scottish Parliament right


now. Unfortunately everything is seen through the frame of


independence. As we come towards a 2016 election there will be very


specific things we will be talking about. What I am determined is that


my view and vision of Scotland have two relate to what people's lives


are alike. It will not be a trading of slogans, it will be how we make


sure our young people get the best education. How do we stop the


attacks on further education, and how do we ensure our health and


social care Airbuses mean people are treated with dignity. Given what use


said said in the past about universal benefits, people might


have been confused by the leaflet you put during the Dunfermline


by-election where you said you supported the scrapping of


prescription charges. Labour supports the free bus passes. Labour


supports the tax freeze. It is a reflection of the cartoon politics


we are living with that their SNP misrepresent what Labour has said. I


have never said that some people get something for nothing. I have said


you have to look both at what you spend money on and what are the


consequences of that. It is not acceptable to say free personal care


when people are living with the experience of less than 15 minute


visits. I want to sustain public services and we need to have a


debate about that. I am in the same place in that debate as many others,


as John Swinney himself said in private. How do you see the council


tax freeze? He is a respected academic. Do you agree with his


findings? We will of course look at the report. But your leaflet says


labour supports the council tax freeze, he says it is an inefficient


use of public funds. Up until 2017 local authorities made commitments


to have a council tax freeze. First of all, the council tax freeze is


underfunded. John Swinney has attacked local government then


condemns local government for making cuts. Secondly we know that the


council tax is discredited. I would hope that a cross-party we could


have a discussion about how we properly fund local government. Are


you talking about a change to the council tax? There is a huge


challenge. People do not want to pay their council tax. Is labour working


on an alternative? The prize cross-party is to understand that


people really care about their local services. We know the funding of


them is not sustainable. I want a discussion, not where the parties


get dividing lines between each other, but come together and address


the challenge of how do you properly build a confidence in the way in


which you raise taxes locally in order to ensure our schools are well


equipped and our young people are properly educated. Thank you for


joining us this afternoon. Still to come, a look at the week


ahead. You are watching Sunday Politics Scotland. Here is the news.


Good afternoon. Two former senior police officers have clashed over


security implications in independent Scotland. Graeme Pearson, former


head of the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency there's effective


working is easier as part of the UK. Allan Burnett, he says a Scottish


intelligence agency could do better. Eight people have been rescued


following a fire in the East End of Glasgow. Emergency crews were called


to the Dennistoun area just before 1:30am. The residents, including two


children, were taken off the fifth floor by firefighters. A further 33


people were evacuated from the building, no one was injured.


Good afternoon, a rather wet look to the afternoon. Some places seeing


good spells, but a fair few showers across western parts. One or two


showers making it through eastwards. It will be quite windy across


central and southern parts of the wind following across northern areas


as the day progresses. Temperatures around 11-12dC at best.


That is it for the moment. In the moment we will be discussing


the events coming up at Holyrood. Almost half of Edinburgh's licensed


saunas are to close after reset city refused to grant them licences.


The closure of a chemical firm in Paisley.


The Scottish Housing regulator says housing arrears have increased since


the bedroom tax was abolished. A former Liberal Democrat MP has


taken his seat in the House of Lords. Jeremy Purvis will now set as


Lord Purvis of Tweed. The cost of fuel bills raised the


temperature in the House of Commons. I want better regulation


and deals for consumers. ScottishPower are one of the latest


firms to announce price rises. Finally, Jack Straw is to stand down


as an MP at the next general election.


So, if that was the week that was, let's turn our attention to the Week


Ahead. My guests today, Alan Roden,


Political Editor for the Daily Mail here in Scotland and the freelance


journalist Pennie Taylor. Let's take a look through a couple of the


stories in the newspapers. Lots of coverage of Grangemouth with the


Sunday Herald saying there are details of the secret deal done by


Alex Salmond to save Grangemouth. He had a secret meeting to see if


another company could purchase the plant. There seems to be praise for


the first Minister's handling of the situation. He is dealing with the


day-to-day issues of a crisis like this. He put the constitutional


argument on hold for a few days but was helped by the UK government in


this. This proves we are Better Together know with both sides coming


together to encourage this deal. Neither side was making political


points and seemed to be coming together for the national interest.


They definitely seems to have taken that decision to leave the


referendum to one side. Looking at the coverage in the papers today and


through the week, Alex Salmond has come out of it very much the vector,


the white hat, if you like. How did the workers come out of it? They are


immensely relieved and I find it personally astonishing that people


can say it is the media's fault that the union movement has come out of


this badly, because I think all the coverage through the week would


indicate that the Utah that the union made was one that the workers


wanted. -- U-turn. How do Ineos look at the end of this week? The union


where worse by far. The mess this up and let the workers almost over the


cliff and need to have a look at themselves and learn some lessons


because I do not think workers will thank the union for what has


happened. I would suggest the events of this week show more than ever


that we need a strong union movement in Scotland to represent the


interests of workers up against companies like Ineos but the


implication is we need intelligent union intervention and not the kind


of macho approach we have seen this layout. Dennis Canon felt the union


were working with one hand behind their back. -- Dennis Canavan. If


there's ever a time when you need a union that is level-headed, this was


then but instead they read from the 1970s textbook and went ahead with


the barnstorming approach that did not work out and have left the


workers in a much worse situation. Let me turn to the Sunday express or


have an interesting story saying the first Minister was the result of --


recipient of US phone bugging. The suggestion is that America seems to


know in advance of the announcement being made a couple of years ago


that Al-Megrahi was being released. I think if I was Alex Salmond I


would feel proud to be worthy of being bugged by the Americans. If


the new, what I don't understand is what difference it made to any


outcome, what is the point? Forewarned is forearmed but it seems


to be a widespread practice? There's some wishful thinking with the idea


that Alex Salmond is in the top 35 world leaders is ridiculous, but it


is going to dominate issues in Europe for the week ahead. A


brand-new MSP being sworn in on Thursday. What do you make of the


Rectory in Baz Luhrmann? -- victory in Dunfermline. It is the second


biggest majority Labour has in Hollywood now. They are undoubtedly


had the best campaign. The first Minister himself took to the streets


on the final day but they still lost heavily. There were special


circumstances surrounding this and it is always difficult to read too


much into a by-election. They always say you cannot draw a conclusion


about the referendum from a by-election result but I imagine


Grangemouth, not too far from Dunfermline, will have had in impact


on how people voted that day. The interesting impact for me was the


growth of UKIP. That causes me some pause for reflection. They got twice


as many votes as the Greens got. UKIP are not the political force in


Scotland as in England but they will dominate the agenda down south and


they could scrape in with an MEP in Scotland. They are on course to save


their deposit sometimes. The Liberal Democrat vote went down


substantially. It does not look as if there's any resurgence for them


any soon? They are going nowhere and Willie Rennie was very popular in


that area but it did not translate into votes. That seems to be the


picture, that people are still unhappy about being in coalition? I


think very much so, across Scotland, it is anecdotal that people who


voted Liberal Democrat are feeling pretty much betrayed.


What about the Conservatives? They will point to the vote going up by


1% with the turnout of 42%, which is not very many votes. Is there any


sign they are doing anything other than flat-lining? Ruth Davidson is


doing a decent job but they are going nowhere and are continuing.


Success for higher will be doubling the seats and going from one to two


but anything other than that will be a disaster. Do either of you get any


sense about what this can tell us about the referendum? It will be a


clash between the Scottish Titans. Although Labour are saying this was


partly a rejection of independence, it did not feel like that. The SNP,


who have a formidable election machine, they knew not to discuss


that. They talked about local schools which is a massive issue in


Dunfermline. They could have done a lot better.


Thank you to you both. That's all from us - I'll be back at the usual


time next week. Just before we go, a reminder of Newsnight Scotland's


special debate tomorrow with a look at higher education in the context


of the referendum. Goodbye.


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