09/02/2017 This Week


Andrew Neil, Michael Portillo and Liz Kendall review the political week with guests Liam Halligan and Matt Forde. Plus a film potentially mocking the week from Andy Parsons.

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# Big John # Big John from the heart of


Westminster came a legend. Now the legend comes to life. Last


night, Liz, he threatened to kill Donald's state visit with his bare


hands, then he snuck over to my place and stole my blue nun. I don't


know if you've noticed my hat but I'm not the sheriff around these


parts any more. You need Andrew. Do you think he'll go after him? He'll


go. Big John is heading them up and moving them out, and he's lining up


the greatest outlaws in the west. And even Kate Parsons is on the gold


rush, filling our cautious with most lewd and riches in all the land. The


fastest news round-up in the west. You looking for trouble? Not any


more. The finest moneyman in the west, Liam Halligan, is on the run


from big, bad John. He's looking for a safe house to hide. Sajid Javid


said the housing market is broken. We need to fix it! And funnyman Matt


Forde's quaking in his boots. Big John really hates him. In a time


when heroes are hard to find, the bad John is one of a kind.


Let me make clear right from the start that,


though we value our relationship with the United States,


and whether or not Donald Trump makes a state visit to this country


is way above my pay grade, I would not wish to issue


an invitation for President Trump to appear on this programme.


I appreciate he's expressed no interest in doing so anyway.


But that won't stop me doing a bit of grandstanding and virtue


signalling before the rest of the media and the wider public.


I've taken this position after much serious consideration as to how much


free publicity it's likely to garner and without consulting


But frankly what Newsnight does is its own business and he's never


Now I know that, over the years, we've welcomed Vlad the Impaler,


Diane Abbott, Adolf Hitler, Attila the Hun, Ken Livingstone


and Transylvania's very own Country Dracula into this studio.


But let me say, as a self-important, solipsistic, egotistical,


preening, pretentious, puffed up, postulating,


pompous little pixie in love with the sound of my own voice,


this programme's long-running opposition to free speech,


sensible debate and proper analysis, coupled with its deep commitment


to free Blue Nun for all means I would not feel comfortable sharing


a sofa on the public airwaves with someone who says what he thinks


and has never had even a sip of alcohol in his life.


I just could not bring myself to do it.


Unless, of course, he has that long-promised contract in his pocket


In which case we're ready to welcome him with a a two-hour special,


a free bathrobe since apparently he doesn't have one


Speaking of those who should never have been invited


in the first place and have long outstayed their welcome,


I'm joined on the sofa tonight by Michael #choochoo Portillo,


Welcome to you both. The IMF told me the Greek debt situation is becoming


exclusive. There seems to be about three weeks to settle the issue. It


doesn't seem it can be settled without new contributions from EU


members but, given that there are elections in France and Germany, it


seems most unlikely those politicians will agree to transfers


of money to the Greeks or debt forgiveness, so it looks like we are


in for another Euro crisis. A programme shown earlier on the BBC


would suggest the EU is becoming unstuck at the joints, so watch this


space. It is the splash story in tomorrow's Financial Times. Beirut


pouring -- the appalling reports this week that Assad tortured and


murdered 14,000 prisoners in a single prison in a single year. Too


many people seem to accept that Assad has to somehow be a part of


the solution, but I don't see how you can get a lasting settlement in


Syria when it is atrocities like that that are driving people toward


the terrorists, and I hope our Foreign Secretary, even if the


president of the USA doesn't, convinces Putin that it is in his


interests to have a settlement that really works. I just don't see how


that can happen when Assad is still there. ... It is like father, like


son on these issues. I had a moment of the weekly few minutes ago, which


is that the ninth District Court of appeals has paled law court's


decision to suspend President Trump's travel ban against seven


mainly Muslim countries. That only leaves the president with the


Supreme Court to go to. He has a problem, there are only eight


members on the Supreme Court at the moment, four liberal, four


conservative. If they split 4-4, the travel ban is not held. -- not


upheld. It would fall. So there is the makings of an executive against


judicial whiplash. This demonstrate that the USA can deal with what


Donald Trump is doing. It isn't our responsibility to do that.


There was a time when housing, or the lack of it, was near the top


These days, the more acute the shortage of affordable housing,


the more it slips down the priority list when it comes to action.


This week the May Government promised to fix our broken housing


market just as the Cameron one promised before it, and the Brown


one before that, oh yes, and the Blair one before that.


And as all their promises gathered dust on the shelves of Whitehall,


we continued to build far fewer homes than we need, rents soared


and young people are now more likely to watch this programme


So why will this latest housing policy be any different?


Here's Liam Halligan from the Telegraph


The biggest obstacle to social progress is our broken housing


Fixing it means tackling some tough vested interests.


The Communities Secretary's right on both counts.


But his housing White Paper isn't up to the job.


Over the last 20 years, we've built 2.5 million too few homes.


That's led to soaring prices, making houses increasingly unaffordable.


In the early '90s, low and middle income workers needed to save around


5% of their wages for three years on average to build a deposit


These days, they'd need 24 years of such savings.


Generation rent's frustrated and rightly so.


Ten years ago, 65% of 25 to 34-year-olds were


The majority then of a generation of young adults is priced out


of the property market and of those who did buy their first home


in 2015, half got help from the Bank of Mum and Dad.


The White Paper headlines are largely about the green belt.


What we really need is for the big house builders that dominate


the market to ease the blockage using the planning permission


There's evidence which the Government largely accepts


of a deliberate building go-slow to keep prices and profits


Sajid Javid promised tough measures the stop large house-builders


from sitting on so-called land banks, but after the White Paper


The UK housing market, once a source of social mobility,


This housing market White Paper promised much,


Our thanks to the students and staff at Lambeth College.


Welcome back to the programme. Liz, what did you make of the White


Paper? Really disappointing. You know, if we are going to build more


homes, we need access to land, finance, more competition among


house-builders, more options, different types of housing for older


people and shared ownership, and there's nothing in it to give it


real teeth. And what there are many things that concern me. I see it a


lot my own constituency, an increasing number of people who are


homeless because they are getting kicked out of the private rented


sector. The key thing is what you said about the bank of mum and dad.


If your parents are better off, they give you help to get on the housing


ladder, and it's a real problem for social mobility. Ward if you have to


do it on your salary, it will be really difficult. What was your


reaction to the White Paper? Similar, very disappointing. This is


a terrible crisis and it is the worst contrast between Thatcher's


Conservative government and the present one. Since the Conservatives


got in in the coalition in 2010, they seem to have had no interest in


home ownership. Numbers are sliding all the time. Nothing effective has


been done about it at all. We used to think that the way you build a


future for the Tory party, apart from anything else, was by having


lots of homeowners. I agree that it is socially divisive, because there


are those who will at some point in money from their parents and the


rest who never will. My solution would be wrong -- more radical than


less orderly. I think you have to go to the public sector. The only way


you are going to get a lot of houses fast is by letting the public sector


or voluntary sector do it. We don't seem to care a lot about the deficit


any more. It's true that the public sector can build cheaply. What that


would do is it would reduce house prices and, in due course, you could


sell public sector houses into the private sector, as we did in the


past. The urgency is to have a look at houses quickly. Homeownership


among 25 to 34-year-olds has fallen by 30%. Quite astounding. I wanted


to dig into some of the issues in a moment. Let's stand back, this has


been a long-running problem for the British political system, no matter


who has been in power for the past 25 years. Labour or Conservative.


What is it about a system that doesn't take the right decisions to


release the land and the money to build more homes? This is a


cross-party issue. We need around 250,000 homes each year. That is the


figure from Kate Barker report in 2004. It is still roughly right. We


haven't built that many homes since the mid-80s. And that, when we beat


-- when we did build those homes, two thirds were provided by small


and medium-sized enterprises, which had an incentive to build quickly.


Now they provide less than a fifth of homes. Big housing developers are


now concentrated. There was a Lords report in summer that set the big


house-builders have all the characteristics of an oligopoly. In


my discussions with government before this white paper, and added a


lot investigation... There was a Channel 4 documentary. I wasn't


going to bring it up! There was some tough talk, and Sajid Javid, to his


credit, at the Conservative conference, said that the big


house-builders were guilty of land banking, and they had a stranglehold


on the market. And yet the measures in this white paper don't get


anywhere near towards breaking back stranglehold. We are getting a lot


more planning permission coming through. That isn't being used


nearly as quickly as it is being given. There is a big gap between


when planning permission is given and when the houses appear. In my


view, honestly, there is a deliberate those low. That


deliberate those low, they would deny it... And they have denied it,


let's make that clear. We will accept your position on that for the


moment. But that on its own cannot be the reason that we are not


building anything like 250,000 homes a year. Until recently, it was the


combination of the big house-builders not wanting to build


quickly, plus so-called nimbyism, people using the green belt is a


sort of ethnic cleansing mechanism to keep the great unwashed away from


their neighbourhood. There is more acreage given to golf courses in


Surrey then there is to residential property. I would say, though, there


has been a lot of effort in the last five years by a local councils, many


of whom I talk to as part of my investigation, very few of whom


would come on camera because they are scared of central government and


the builders. They have given a lot more planning permission. In the


last two years, I got some figures, the last two years where we had


numbers, there was a printed increase -- 28% increase in planning


permission granted for the and that is the land banking. Yes. It is also


what Michael Rose. For years, we haven't trusted councils to borrow


to build socially affordable homes to rent. -- it is also what Michael


says. That would make the single biggest difference in my


constituency. It wouldn't force people into unstable, increasing,


costly and often bad quality private sector. It would get the housing


bill down as well. It would reduce the rental... Yes. I would like to


see longer term tenancies for people, especially families. That it


is in the White Paper, though how strong it is... It is only for the


new build to rent properties. That was Ed Miliband's idea, as was the


land banking complaint. Use it or lose it was his cry, and Mr Osborne


said it was a stupid idea, effectively. The green belt, a lot


of which isn't green. Is it time to do a qualitative assessment of the


green belt and say, there are some parts that are really quite brown,


we can build there, we can create other green belt elsewhere and build


more parks in our cities and towns and, overall it would be a plus?


Liam is probably right that the green belt is a peripheral issue.


However, it's one of these things which is very emblem attic that


people get very, very upset about. So I think if the Government


announced that it was reviewing the green belt, that would set public


opinion so strongly against the whole idea of extra house building


that I think it's not worth it. It would set it back all together. I


think there's something in that. The social attitude survey shows


so-called nimbyism is waning. You've now got increasing numbers of people


who want building in their locality not least because nice middle class


children called Jonathan and Emily can't buy homes. This is a story


issue now and I'm surprised actually that the Prime Minister hasn't given


Javid the way through to actually do something a bit more radical, not so


much on the green belt, I accept that's... Anyway, the big house


builders want us to have a row and nervous breakdown about the green


belt but particularly on punitive measures, on forcing the big house


builders to build... I like free markets but this free market is


broken so you have to intervene. It raises a broader question, whether


the Tory Government is too busy with Brexit to be a Tory Government. I


think there is a lot in that. Conservatives are very worried about


that. Here is the rub, a depressing one. Is there not a pretty good


chance that things will not get better? Michael and Liz are right.


We need a mixed economy solution. We need more socially provided houses.


We do. And they've gone up from the hundreds to the thousands, the low


single digit thousands. 300,000 for Harold Macmillan. Help raising the


cap would build 60,000ing. The Housing Association model is a


fantastic mod they can work and does do good work, but in the end, it's


the private sector that is going to provide the majority of the homes


and the private sector, I'm afraid, has every incentive to build slowly


in order to keep the prices high. Allow the prices to go up and make


more? Indeed. It's not just existing homeowners that want high prices,


the Treasury do. Here is something you don't hear often, the banking


sector want prices to go up because they are up to their neck in


property loans. If the housing prices come down, it's believed the


banks could collapse. Mrs May said she wants to help the just about


managing so you have set a challenge for her tonight on housing, thank


you, Liam. Now, it's late, pucker up


and try to give Diane a kiss on the cheek late,


as the Brexit Minister tried to do on Tuesday -


purely in a comradely fashion, you understand, since they'd both


just voted to trigger Article 50, only to be told by Madam Mao


to "eff off". Not very sisterly,


but she probably had a headache. Anyway, fear not, David Davis,


because waiting in the wings is political funnyman Matt Forde,


who's conveniently putting animosity So troll away, Facebrats,


Snapchunter on - because, you see, Now, we pride ourselves


on being of a religious bent here on This Week,


and we're often derided for it by the secularist metrosexuals that


dominate the upper echelons Not after our #PrayforDiane campaign


resulted in Madam Mao rising Lazarus-like from her death bed


to rude health once more - very rude, in the case of David


Davis - and returning to be that shining beacon of political wisdom


and integrity that we know and love. Yes, our prayers were answered


and I think what especially did the trick was that little candlelit


vigil choo-choo held after we came off air last


week on Platform 12, Here's Andy Parsons with his rather


charitable round-up Hello there, I'm Andy, doing some


fund-raising for a very important charity. No, no, no, it's for some


very desperate people. It's for This Week! Good afternoon, I'm collecting


on behalf of This Week. # Give a little bit more... #


Collection for Andrew Neil. And Michael Portillo? ! He's a sad man


on a train. I'm a long way off what I need for a Knighthood. Maybe I


need to do some grovelling to the Queen. I mean she's 90 years old, an


incredible woman. If you think about it, she has two birthdays a year,


she's officially 180. Doubly incredible. The Parliamentary week


kicked off with the speaker weighing in on triumph, John Bercow declared


to applause for some MPs that he wouldn't let the President address


Parliament during his state visit. As far as this place is concerned, I


feel very strongly that our opposition to racism and to sexism


and our support for equality before the law and an independent judiciary


are hugely important considerations in the House of Commons. Not


everyone was clapping. Once the dust settled, John Bercow was himself


accused of being a mini Trump and scalded for showing off. Lord


Fowler, Bercow's counterpart wondered whether the speaker's veto


should be taken away all together. It's ridiculous! Do people not know


how much I've suffered for this country? I've even had to listen to


my wife singing in the bath. # You really, really, really wanna


zig-a-zig-ah. The position means Mr Speaker or myself can veto the


leader at least as far as Westminster Hall is concerned. I


think it's for Parliament to consider whether there is a better


way in which such decisions can be made. Roll up, roll up, get your


raffle tickets here. First prize, a bottle of premium Blue None. Second


prize, a full bottle. Retails at ?1.75. Third prize, third prize.


Third prize, a full bottle plus an evening with Michael Portillo.


The Brexit Bill raced over the finishing line in the Commons this


week. The Government comfortably saw off a rebellion by promising MPs a


meaningful vote on the final deal. There will be a meaningful vote. The


vote will be eother accept the deal that the Government will have


achieved and I repeat, that that process of negotiation will not be


without frequent reports to this House or no deal. Labour claim the


vote was a major concession. Well, an inch of a concession. We are


fighting hard to try to get the right concessions. There is two


years to go, we won't give up the battle. It's difficult, we are in


opposition, we are trying inch by inch to get more accountability and


scrutiny. Tory remainers were not impressed


with Labour's inchy victory. Ex-Chancellor, George Osborne,


conspicuously abstained from the vote and others who did turn up gave


the whips a piece of their mind. Former Education Secretary Nicky


Morgan, was not impressed. The Government is in full steam ahead


mode. The Foreign Secretary even took a microphone in the face at an


EU summit. Say again. One more time. Jeremy


Corbyn imposed a strict three-line whip on Labour to support the Bill


and three whips voted against, thus making it a strict no line whip. All


in all, 52 Labour MPs rebelled but the surprise of the night was the


resignation of Clive Lewis moments before the vote. Another one bites


the dust. But there was a silver lining. Diane's recovered. Phew. The


passionate speeches just before votes can really do it. She rallied


and supported the Brexit vote. How kissable she must have seemed! I say


she supported it. Just about... I have a lot of misgivings about the


idea of a Tory Brexit. I think the country will soon come to regret it.


But the Labour Shadow Cabinet debated and decided this week that


we would vote to trigger Article 50 at the third reading and I'm a loyal


member of the Shadow Cabinet. Jeremy Corbyn went on social care at


PMQs, ambushing the PM with leaked texts from Surrey County Council.


They apparently revealed a sweetheart deal to scrap a planned


referendum on an increase in council tax charge in exchange for


additional funding. What deal had been offered to Surrey that got them


to call off a referendum and will the same deal be offered to every


other council every day that the Prime Minister fails to act? This


crisis gets worse. Will she finally come clean and provide local


authorities with the funding they need to fund social care properly?


What he fails to recognise is that they can only spend money on social


care and on the National Health Service if you have a strong economy


to deliver the wealth that you need. When I talk about half a trillion


pounds, that's the money we'll be spending on the NHS this Parliament.


When Labour talk about half a trillion pounds, it's the money they


want to borrow. Conservatives investing in the NHS, Labour


bankrupting Britain. This isn't fair. All Katherine Jenkins had to


do was sing some rugby songs. Swing low, sweet... Right, I've had enough


of this! Right. Hello, your Majesty. On hold.


Hello. Hello, your Majesty. So far we've raised ?17. 27. Woo. It was


more than we were expecting, yes. But is it going to be enough for the


honours committee to give me a Knighthood?


Unappreciative... Andy Parsons. We'll put a word with


him. He's currently on tour, we'd like to thank him for all his help.


The Brexit Bill passed unscathed, sizeable majority, 120 amendments,


none of them passed. What did the opposition achieve? Well, we started


to raise the issues that really matter after all of this which is


what kind of Brexit are we going to get, jobs or growth. I was deeply


disappointed, especially over the amendment to give Parliament a


meaningful vote at the end of the process. Let me come on to that in a


minute. Before I do, the legislation... I mean Parliament is


in recess next week for February, when it comes back the legislation


goes, such as it is, goes to the Lords. Will things be any different


there in your view? Well, I hope that the Lords actually presses for


this amendment to give Parliament a meaningful vote at the end of the


crisis. You know I was for Remain but I voted to Trig Ayr 50 because


I'm -- trigger Article 50, I've abided by the result but I do want


Parliament to have that say. The most important moment in Parliament


this week was when the Brexit minister David Jones made a


so-called concession. It was no such thing. Parliament either has to


accept what the Government offers or fall back on WTO rules and in the


event there is no deal, there'll be no vote at all. I don't think that's


a meaningful say, to take it or leave it and, in my view, it was a


con. If that was the choice, Michael, it's a Hobson's Choice, is


it not, because either you vote for the deal whatever it is even if it's


a bad deal because all the Remainers who may have through gritted teeth


voted for a decent deal still have to vote for a bad deal because it


will probably not be worse than crashing out in WTO


That situation arises because of the nature of the negotiation. If the


government comes back with something and parliament rejects it, do we


really think the government goes back to Europe and says, Parliament


has rejected it so you have to give us better terms. Surely we know that


isn't going to happen. So it arises from the situation, realistically,


the deal but we do will be the best deal that is available, and, yes,


Parliament can reject it and then we fall back on WTO rules. I don't


agree. What if there were possibly a deal where we had better access to


the single market or some way of remaining in it, whilst still having


some effect over freedom of movement? If the government doesn't


want it, we won't get that chance. I think the government would like


things to change as little as possible, and the government may be


lucky because, as this is going on, freedom of movement in Europe is


falling apart. So the idea that this is a fundamental principle which has


to be insisted upon in the Brexit situation is untrue. Maybe there


will be a deal to be done. But the government clearly wants things to


be as an unchanged as possible, it doesn't want tariffs to be imposed


on exports or an EU exports to us. But it gave up on you single market


access before it even began. Because the partners said we couldn't have


access to it. But you don't throw away your hand before you've played


it, and I think a vote in parliament would strengthen Theresa May's and,


because the remaining EU countries would know, if we offer something


bad, we will reject it and sent it back. Why would the EU Parliament be


able to reject it and not our own Parliament? You can reject it it's


just the consequences might be dire. We can't send it back to be amended.


When David Cameron went there last year and said, unless you give me


some concessions, I might lose the referendum, they gave him


concessions which were not worth the paper they were written on. But he


didn't press for changes on immigration. Let's come back to


this. Our stories about Jeremy Corbyn stabbing them fake news? I


don't believe that he has given some kind of a date. -- Jeremy Corbyn


standing down fake news. Do you think that Clive Lewis sees himself


as a leadership material? I've no idea, but what we need from the


leadership of our party is a clear path as to how we are going to climb


this mountain in order to get back into power. You don't think you can


see that yet? We have got miles to go. We are doing very badly in the


polls. Two by elections coming up. What we are saying is not resonating


with the public. People don't trust us on the economy and they feel we


are speaking to ourselves. We need to move on. Was John Bercow right to


say what he said about not, in public, not wishing to invite you to


Trump to address parliament? He could have been more wrong. I think


it was shocking. You showed very little respect his office. The is


criticising a man who is accused of not showing much respect for his


office, being narcissistic and populist, and it looked like the


speaker was in danger of doing the same thing. Why didn't he make his


point in private? These things are determined in private. The speaker


of the Lords was not consulted, the speaker, who we have seen, and


somebody called the grand great Chamberlain, or something like that.


Why was it necessary to make it so public from the speaker's chair?


Because I think he obviously feels this very strongly that an


invitation, if it were to be issued, would have to come to him, and I


think he wanted to quash any talk of it. Actually, I think all this stuff


about, he is misusing his position, I don't think this is what it is


about. I think some people have a vendetta against him. They think


that used to be very much on the right. He has had a journey more


towards the left. They like that. He has been a radical, reforming


speaker, and people don't like the changes he has made. I think this


motion that has been cast... A motion of no confidence in him, but


it would get through. It will strengthen him. I agree that he has


a lot of enemies but I don't agree that this is what he is about. But


this is about. I everybody would be deeply shocked by what the speaker


said. Let's move on. Now, folks, how do


you like your eggs - or splattered across


Nigel Farage's umbrella full of four-letter words


and dripping with resentment? Yes, there's been plenty


of animosity this week, and we haven't even mentioned


the Shadow Cabinet. That's why we're putting


it in the spotlight. Animosity between MPs


and the speaker reached new heights this week,


not just over Donald Trump but over his commitment to axing


Commons clerks' wigs. Wigs have been worn by the clerks


for several centuries. If one goes back some centuries,


some several centuries, which normally it is the enjoyable


sport of the honourable gentleman to do, he will find that in fact


clerks did not wear wigs. Nigel Farage is no fan


of John Bercow either. I'm not neutral about Bercow,


in fact this bloke has Farage drives people


in Stoke bonkers too. He encountered eggy animosity


as he walked with election candidate Does David Beckham deserve


the animosity he's received for allegedly going to desperate


lengths to receive a Knighthood? Great to receive an honour


for playing football. Meanwhile, across the pond,


President Trump's hatred I understand the total dishonesty


of the media better than anybody But, surprise, surprise,


the Donald wants to confine animosity between the US and Russia


to the past. I say it's better to get along


with Russia than not. Will I get along with


them - I have no idea. Political standup Matt Forde knows


about animosity in politics. I think he gets heckled more


than most comedians, Farage. Matt Forde joins us. Welcome to the


programme. Pleasure. Where does all this animosity come from these days?


There has always been some fair but it's a new era. Social media has


fuelled some of it and a lot of politicians are to blame.


Politicians often talk politics down. One of the most frustrating


elements of the modern era is when somebody is any office saying, I am


not a politician. If you are standing for office, by definition


you are. Like Donald Trump. Farage, a lot of Ukip, Jeremy Corbyn plays


on it a bit, and I don't know any industry where somebody stands for a


job and says, the industry is rubbish. I don't say, comedy is


clap, come and see me but the rest is awful. It's a contradiction, and


I think that's given a green light to the rest of the public to be


atrocious. Do you think this animosity has always been around,


that social media is democratised it, in the sense that it's amplified


it and it become an echo chamber of animosity? It's giving people an


outlet for knee jerk reactions. People used to just watch TV and


shout at it. Sometimes you need to let it out. Instead, people now have


a platform for things where it's often just blind rage if you have


encountered it on social media, often, when you get into a


discussion with somebody who has been abusive, they often take it


back and apologise. Wright the greatest animosity often comes from


those on social media who have bizarre names, not their own names.


They are very brave, hiding behind in the Midi, aren't you? Social


media is the equivalent of a windscreen. You know how people


swear when they are in a car in a windscreen. Social media is like


that. I want to address David Beckham's animosity. I think the


honours system is deeply corrupting. I think it's gone so badly wrong,


and to see people so hungry for honours I think, is sickening. You


know, it is very hard to be fair with an honours system at any level,


but at the top level the awards are going for many of the wrong reasons.


Even at the lower level, giving a MBE to somebody who has done nursing


or community work for 20 years, we don't know if somebody else would be


equally deserving. I think the system is corrupt. If the Lords


voted against Brexit, we could get rid of the Lords and the honours


system in one go. You are on the receiving end of a lot of nasty mess


and animosity when you ran for Labour leader a couple years ago. Is


there more around, do you think, all we are more aware of it? I think we


are more aware of it. It's true that people, people are surprised


somehow, oh, you see, yes, I have. It's also that, somebody once said,


in today's world, we can travel further and further distances at our


circles of reference are getting smaller, and people are so surprised


when people have different views, they and attack. I have never known


politics to be so divisive. Do you think there is more animosity in


politics? I think so. Partly because people don't want to engage deeply


with an argument and understand the nuance and it's simpler to say, we


disagree, you must be evil, I'm in the right and I'm going to listen to


people who agree with me. In life it's thrilling to sit opposite


somebody you disagree with and have a great conversation, whether it is


Liz and Michael en This Week or politicians. The thrill of sitting


opposite somebody you disagree with and feeling very company is


something we have lost. I remember the animosity to Mrs Thatcher,


Michael Foot, Neil Kinnock... There was a lot of animosity to your good


self, entirely unjustified. Mainly, to Margaret Thatcher. Then we went


through a period where we were deeply worried about apathy. The BBC


used to worry deeply about it. We used to have seminars on it! We did.


We all went. Better than working! Is one worry we no longer have. It is


true that there is animosity around but, if you look at how engaged the


country got in the Scottish referendum, then the European


referendum, then Donald Trump, people may not like the result but


they were engaged. Yes, but sometimes there is a price to be


paid. If it is more aggression, more nasty nests, I'm not entirely


convinced that it's a worth paying. Good question. What are you up to at


the moment? I'm on tour, Birmingham this weekend. This Saturday at the


old Vic theatre. Thank you for your time. No animosity, I hope. No


animosity. That's your lot for


tonight, but not for us. However, we're not


going to Annabel's. Despite decades of loyalty,


they've cranked up their membership fees and doubled the price


of Blue Nun. Instead, we're off to join Diane


in Big Nick's Speakeasy, Hackney. Diane's been dancing


in Big Nick's for years and, now she's thrown off the Brexit flu,


we're sure tonight Michael is quite agog


at the prospect. In this week of housing crisis,


Brexit turmoil and Trump diplomacy, take comfort in knowing that you can


always trust your politicians to Nighty-night, don't let


the rabid seagulls bite. I've had a number of constituents


contact me regarding overzealous and aggressive seagulls. There is no


dispute that seagulls are beginning to behave badly. The Aberdeen


Seagull is the size of a large dog. It is a proper health and safety


risk to our citizens. Nothing can really be safely eaten on the shore


front without risking life and limb at the hands, or should I say the


beak of a vicious Seagull. People are having to take it into their own


hands to deal with these difficult and aggressive birds, which means


there are people wandering the streets of Berwick. A number of


people have visited A as a result of being injured a Seagull. People


are living with seagulls. CROWD CLAMOURS


Karen! Hey, Julie.


JULIE LAUGHS Have you heard where they found her?


No. Have you? Tell her she owes you


the truth as a mate. 'You haven't lost you faith


in people...have you?'


Andrew Neil reviews the political week with Michael Portillo and Liz Kendall, with a film potentially mocking the week from Andy Parsons.

Their guests are journalist and commentator Liam Halligan looking at the housing market, while Matt Forde talks about animosity in the spotlight section.