tv The Alex Salmond Show RT January 7, 2021 6:30pm-7:00pm EST
on the the redoubtable of tom galbraith and glasgow hill head way back in 1970 how did the young vince cable get on taking the lead in the for the scottish tory politics when it was a slightly complicated journey after i'd lived the university i gonna live in east africa and kenya serious. got married there came back and settled to teach ship they invest here. and got involved in glasgow politics which is as you know or rather a unique character phenomenon. i decided trying to really gain or getting involved in that in the local governments and going to the council but since i damsel live in the hill had i competed for the candidacy it listen very unusual seats and lost. their way to tory m.p.'s he was one and teddy taylor across in cash cow not on the south side was the other and there was then a
a strong tory tradition there and in the city. there was actually a particle the progressive side which had their kind of its ultimately a sectarian base and so that you know the property of the rights as it was was quite strong i was going out of that and courses gum. but it was you know quite a genteel campaign and i i did that quite well given a respectable 2nd and i was sort of bloodied and electoral politics but of course the experience as a council for man a hill in the chamber of some have half the via a council familia hella very much of anything in the house of commons would fight new with that because that is what it was it was pretty rough it was you know university of life experience. you know some very genuine problems and then you're immersed in my case the 3 years in you know endless problems. i'm seeing problems
into an extremity that you don't see any of the senses is now much improved and they organize a sheen of the prostate into some fine idealistic people but it was a it was also a bit of a man. and i got there were wrong and the one of 2 of. the characters that that night is that it was a very good political training. and i think we did some good things i mean i'm amazed these days about the inability. i think you know nations that the difficulty of getting social housing built men and in my time in glasgow we were getting were trying to 1000 social housing only unit c.n.n. some of them were pretty terrible i mean i read rodin to be pulled down but we got to stop them and things went down. and you walk over to your south but you contested the nomination in their home stead in london then they did something they were for the marginal seat of a house that was then with a set and ken livingstone who had political history
a bit different if he had edged them out of the labor nomination back then it might have been it was the time i was a special advisor one of the 1st generation that were john smith that was a really great character and i fell and enormous admiration for and you know since i was politically engaged i decided to compete for a parliamentary seat i very nearly one in there i got they support of almost all the awards but can was really him said operating the party machine he had some big trade unions behind him and you know very much their kind of militant wing of the party which i definitely lost. out from not so. you know rather outclassed in that in that company that live a party song left a new song to the newly formed the social democratic party led by a roy jenkins looking back at the funny thing the s d p's contribution to to british politics where what was the significant legacy of
that breakaway well it's in it to the positive legacies that a lot of the people who were involved in their state based stayed in politics and made a big contribution to that i hadn't realised the license around they cabinet table that i think 3 of my conservative colleagues were former members of the s.t.b. they kept quiet about it but it sort of a regular reemerged and of course there was a whole swathe of talk people from the labor party leader shelley williams all right jenkins bill rogers who are really actually people and help to build up the liberal democrats it didn't achieve its objectives we came. narraway close to breaking the mold in 1003. 100 live a challenge was mooted by the falcons well primarily and you know we almost night it didn't and the british 2 party system didn't matter and fs sponsors the post
boats him about and the individuals who lead today s.t.p. have separately made you know major contributions to political rights surely and that they probably was one of the most outstanding individuals in british politics and he came in through that route. you're past the didn't go into parliament that stage maybe went on to a substantial business could be of the chief economist the royal dutch shell so when you did achieve the parliamentary seat in the 1907 was there your new melissa a big advantage coming with our economic. heft than back then not really no i mean it became a help to me later on but getting into parliament as you know it said it's all about rush roots it's about door knocking it's about organizing teams of people or sense a very different skill set. and i almost didn't make it actually i think as you're
may know my wife was very seriously ill with cancer sorry i'm a struct out that she encouraged me to keep going and i sort of mentioned it got over the line and you know i just saw you came in for a large group of. liberal democrats which was the largest group for many years than the in the house of commons that would be unusual coming into a group with so many new colleagues. was that the experience that caused difficulty or whatever the just the lately that there were part of a large team now i think that was it was very high in iraq i mean it was expanding when paddy ashdown was the leader of the even very good that many very good to create a team spirit very disciplined it was actually a very disciplined party really are very few rebellions we have lots of local characters but we all know from down in and we work together. i think if there was a disappointment in that parliament i think we had
a hoax through teddy archons relationship with tony blair that there would be more progress on you know the big political reforms we did get the evolution you know scotty hanumant and all that and we did get to you know limited move to the. david lucian even with in england the way that. we got some proportional voting and they gave all descend lists and insulted local government back about the cape changes we want to say which was an end to the fest past the post system across the u.k. for parliamentary elections we didn't get that and. and in essence our problems ever since stem from. them in campbell was was was part of the you stepped in as they are acting leader of the team some notable success in parliamentary terms for questioning gordon brown a famous question which still lead
a lot primus this question many people are surprised that that states that you didn't seek the party leadership were you in 2 minds about it before you decided not to go for that that well i'd get think about it but it just happened that they the 2 main contenders chris you know and nick clegg had already been well organized mostly by parliamentary colleagues are committing themselves one way or the other it was also a mood and in. the main camp it was great in many ways he was stereotyped as an older person it will not seem very crudely armond wrongly. and i got some of that feedback as well because i'm the same generation that says so i decided there was no way i was going to break through at that point so i made the best of it. got heavily involved and they control this is around the banking crisis and i think that certainly you know when we cross swords in a in a good way or in
a few few occasions too and so go forward to the coalition government in your back then on the left of center politics how difficult was that for someone with that but the to go into a coalition with the conservative party a looking back was it worth the candle or was it something that was a never to bill in your opinion they just had to make the best of it it was a lottery or same was i thought it was inevitable i didn't think we have any choice i wasn't comfortable i didn't particularly like it part of the political logic pointed to it was the numbers in the house of commons it was the only way you could form a stable government and given what i think many of us thought were. position of economic crisis we weren't going to be forgiven if we had some to charge the government and we are to go in and make the best of it might be for the personal comfort kind of you are too but not to work with gordon brown on the night i really like the guy despite your comment earlier about my quit and i never got to respect women that
list 70 of being more comfortable in that context than in politics you can't always do what's come to you now that you are political logic sense for most of those that don't remember as i recall you say the transformed himself from rambo to to mr bean which says one of the more memorable quips that prime minister's questions well it was stealin rather than rum but anyway it was an it crew oh that effective. that's politics i mean you fight that night lights of it out at night in a mini was it genuine principle politician is are immense that i mean when we look at what he's been doing in recent years and i thought he was retro and in come back saying they were great financial crash that we had was that was exemplary i mean i criticised the way the labor governments have narrowed the financial and housing bubble to build up but you know i think a inmates from that will be settled with lots of credit. you got
a casualty of the follow to the coalition in 2015 that came storming back in twickenham in 2017 then became party leader some 10 years or so after you thought yourself too old to become party leader and enjoyed considerable length total success saw i get back to this question of the very very few past the little who started though after the t.v. a substantial result is that not something you're going to ponder at all for a long time as i'm a viewer i mean it's very tempting to say an actor to stand down there and i've done this he wanted down there that i thought that any of it to the next generation was the right thing to do i don't. you know i would have been forgiven if i had been greedy and selfish and gone back on my word so i said i was going to stand down in a orderly way and i did stand. now if it were possible recount from the last election you know the opportunities are there we have very good people so i am not to
misstate to the future and i'm not doing something else enjoying life outside parliament there is a life outside. and i'm making good use of that so that's cable for the leader of the liberal democrats demonstrate he lives life after politics thank you very much for joining us from there like some until i get a job after the break when i interview bob wycliffe cannot force the light to the house of commons as me of dothan wigley and fed but in 1974 joy listen.
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welcome back alex is interviewing to ask this to old hands about the way things work and the shape of things to come that would make me late by coming to the day touching distance of the dominant labor party in welsh politics. so bob will likely have cannot have been deaf and likely as was and the comments how did you get into politics how did bite land in 1974 well i was in politics the fall and i had stood in $97.00 failed to get in i was elected on moves it to drill county go to council in $172.00 the only white council in their labor people all around me in the boat the seats it was an education there are those knocked into shape though i was ready for it in 97 before and everything there threw at me so after being signed by the the i had sat in the rights and left a ted l. the house of commons wouldn't offer much feels for you but what i was 30 years old
going into the house of commons and my colleague over the list i was 27 and we were very young compared to that parliament there is like when you go to your new school your junior member and those in the 6th form look very big beasts indeed but there were big beasts there were people of tremendous reputation and people caliber of people like michael foot and you know powell and ian paisley and when you of course came into a 7 s.n.p. members a came into that election the biggest danger that we had was only being there for a few months because when a 2nd general election within that period elected in february and another election in october that was challenging and not parliament you came in the context of all those riots of a welsh nationalism and scottish national some personified by the 11 s and pm piece
that came in and told it on your own success in wales but the context was of of britain i just having just entered the european union and the confirmatory referendum of 1985 this is quite amazing you came and to westminster of politics. and that scenario and now there you are in the house the last bit of battling back over the last 2 fans well absolutely it's not an idea it was a very staunch pro european way back and before the 172. steps being taken by edward heath i was in a difficult position because when we had the referendum in 175 you've tried going to the position of not wanting to join the european union because wales didn't have a voice in its own right now then ok that that was a fair enough technical point my belief was is much better for us to be in there working from inside europe and growing ourselves as a nation bigger right were placed side by side with all the other little nations of
europe in a new united front and that is something that has driven my politics all that tight and i must say i breaks my heart when i think that we are leaving our continent no continent has meant so much to wales in cultural terms in linguistic terms and economic and the period that we have had within the european union has been of tremendous benefit to wales in building a protocol to me in attracting overseas investment to wales the cells of the european market and now we stand to lose that people moving away i think is a retrograde step and i regret it very much. so how is that going to play out and welsh politics are a no one hand that dampened the prospects of ply coming in mosul looking for a much more powerful parliament and wales a because of the lack of the unity and context or another hand of people in wales saying well you know the facts have a villa clearly by by westminster not paying attention to needs that perhaps we
should be making our own way. very much so i mean there's been a tremendous sea change in welsh politics during the last 12 months we've seen support for independence in wales which hasn't ever historically been as high as it was instruction that is reached 34 percent in the opinion polls and that is staggering this new scene that we're in something that threatens us in wales considerably in terms of agriculture in terms of manufacturers and in terms of our quota of life and it's something that we're going to stand up and be counted on and that is what is firing the interest in independence now if we can't be ought to be united europe within the structure united kingdom eventually as a member state of europe in our own right then we have to fight to have our independence from westminster and that is the same for scotland and i suspect the people in northern ireland we're looking to
a reunification referendum before long we're with the republic because they need to be seeing the dangers of being dominated by a london which is only interested in itself. let me tell you back to the young firebrand wigley in the house of commons these days and the seventy's very close parliament of course parliament hanging by a knife edge i mean that is sort of rub shoulders with heart of wilson and then later gentile again and the collar the skin somebody had to be in the commons and and the data varied opportunities for a young upstart m.p. to buttonhole the prime minister than say listen that the valleys need a bath attention or whatever in wales these are a lot of attention i think the item that got most attention was our fight to get compensation for the quarrymen suffering communicant uses and indeed are industry workers with such long diseases and the fact that we succeeded in delivering that in the last gasp of the $179.00 parliament was something that gave us
a credibility as a proxy but also brought benefits to hundreds of thousands of people not only in wales the united kingdom. and that was a period in what's called the winter than your native pastures politically with margaret thatcher totally dominant but then when she was a place by john meacham you have a perfect one advantage that you not because she was the prime minister's pale and has a thomas did that give you special access data quickly you were able to get a few favors of retirement because that john major lived upon you to not have not to cancel his vote. tearing his daring and there were times when we didn't but for most of the 20 years we didn't and i got on very well with him and i'm still in touch with him and i regard him as a very fine human being i disagree with much of his politics and he disagrees with mine but here and his wife and eleanor myself. keep in close contact now than
at that time the fact that he was prime minister and was willing to give a year when s. he did give oxygen ring with aunt hand and i think that the way in which he handled the northern ireland situation leading to tony blair then took it on and got the good friday agreement i think that his understanding of the dimension of ireland of scotland. probably benefited from the some of the chats we had and i think that he had a much greater sympathy with our aspirations he said that he always wanted to be a united kingdom and he would never do anything that undermined the united kingdom but he also in the same dress said ultimately it was for the scottish people or the irish people for the welsh people to turn in their own future and much as he would be sad if we were to leave the united kingdom he would respect that decision and i
only wish we had a prime minister now that took the same attitude because clearly in scotland there is a pressure and in northern ireland it will be and in wales if things carry on. as they are and we too will be there looking for our own place in the sun depending on our own efforts to build our own future and we certainly want the right to do. so you forward a bit of a say tony blair becomes prime minister on the label landslide of 1970 a national assembly arrives in wales elections in 1009 that's when glee leads spike timely and takes them to a fan of of questar of beating the labor party in wales to every time you reflect and say ah just a percentage to more than i could have been the fast fast minister of wales alex i'll let you into secret some people in wales already know when i heard in my count on that friday morning that it looks as if we were sweeping the valleys and it
looked at one point they were really going to take more than the 17 that we could be the largest party a shiver went up my spine because i knew we weren't ready for it and the result we got where we were the main opposition party a credible alternative government to do it giving us an opportunity to do our own homework to build ourselves as a as a movement within wales ready to take on government a later stage that was something. else and if it had come to us of course one would have tried to govern as best we could but there was another point as well that was important the labor party in wales had been badly split on evolution and people like neil kinnock would been leading the campaign against it was important the labor party in wales show itself in the seen by the people of wales as a party that was committed to governing wales within the national assembly and therefore it was an entirely bad thing the labor party was forming that 1st government. that's one final question i mean i've campaigned with you in and wales
and indeed your campaign with me in scotland and i was always struck by the me just say in the family oddities that people displayed to mob when when campaigning in fact you taught me a lesson or 2 about the techniques involved what advice would you give to the current crop of politicians to get that sort of empathy with the electorate perhaps for much of politics that we all live in politics perhaps somewhat missing now. i mean it is so vitally important within your own constituency and you and i know about that because we have been there needs to build up the linkages that you have to deal with people not just on party political matters and not just on the issues that concern them as individuals but on matters that are important to a community that you're dealing with a community on all levels and that is what builds up your own credibility and that
is that that exists within your own constituents it bias most of them something that is more generally accepted and that was helpful for me i was undoubtedly was the us got a ballot and in that working with people in that way in building up the credibility in what you're saying in regards to a host of issues you're building up a credibility in what you're saying about independence discussion for wales and for a constitutional future and it's step by step that you claim claim ben nevis a crime snowden you take people with you step by step all the way live ensure the you get to that summit. lastly in interview i described you as a firebrand on occasion and occasionally you had some run ins with the chair in the house of commons resulting in your expulsion from the the house for relatively short periods of time but when you're sitting there on the red benches of a house a lot and you're looking at the speaker of the house the last case only thank
yourself manifest and justice here in the best time i will that the house the logs as i used to rumble up the house of commons where there's no point in looking at 2 of the speaker of the house of lords in those 2 because the row the speaker there is totally different the house of lords is a so-called self-governing chamber and you don't raise points of order you discuss them amongst yourselves and to that extent this is a more egalitarian structure strangely the house of commons now then there are all sorts of weaknesses house of lords the fact that people aren't elected means that we don't have the credibility we don't have the clout and therefore even when you are fighting and you're putting the arguments forward and you win the arguments you still don't have that leverage push that through against i was a commons i mean if we're going to have a bi cameral system going into the future and the sooner the house of lords changes to being elected senate the better the people there needs to have the credibility
that comes from the electoral process and incidentally while the united kingdom remains or possibly develops into a federal or content role a structure prior to getting a full independence in wales scotland northern ireland then there needs to be in those circumstances there needs to be. a recognition that the upper chamber might be have a role it might have a role in giving a voice scotland wales and northern ireland of the sort that it doesn't always get within the structures of westminster barnwood way of can often doesn't regulate thank you so much for joining me now examined cho thank you alex. change days out westminster between them vince cable and asad with glee boasts half a century of parliamentary experience when lord wigley was elected to the commons the u.k. had just entered to get it now and i said lord she's been a fierce opponent of bricks it has servants cable led the liberal democrats to
a viable in the european elections under a new leader they face new oblivion and the general election between them they have seen 9 prime ministers come and go they look back and see a deterioration in the standard of politics as well as the governance of the country however both the do see better times ahead for their respective parties but for now as for myself alex in all of this too it's good bye stacey i hope to see you all again next.
the way of life grandad leading the traditionally no magic lifestyle country is similar to a parallel reality was my. dad to drive the women who carry the weight of this whole block on their shoulders ensure them with full strength one also learned she'd never this we ought to close now is thank you to not however in the vast expanse of russia there where i housewife could secure regular employment status within the family to not to make him a child on the front of my kids. and usually she's in bookie. crazy.