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Eddie Mair | 17:45 UK time, Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Every weeknight after PM, the production team meets in a Glass Box to talk about the programme...a frank and civilised discussion about what worked and what didn't. Please contribute your thoughts on this subject in a similar spirit.

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  • 1. At 5:55pm on 07 Sep 2010, Anne P wrote:

    Felt it was not necessary to spend so long summarising the Pakistan floods - more new news about progress or otherwise would have been helpful.

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  • 2. At 5:58pm on 07 Sep 2010, newlach wrote:

    Good when Eddie said to Boris "With hope!"

    That assault on the tiny woman by the police officer was quite brutal. The court sentence of 6 months seems very, very, short.

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  • 3. At 6:01pm on 07 Sep 2010, Phil wrote:

    45,000 letters are sent to taxpayers. Couldn't you find one? Why did we have an interview with a man who clearly has not received one of these new letters?

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  • 4. At 6:10pm on 07 Sep 2010, IMOORE wrote:

    2/ May be good if you think a good interview with a politician is one where its a bear baiting exercise, but as a comment it was hardly merited and did nothing to advance the interview. I would have laughed if Boris had said 'well what do you want, put them up against the wall and shoot them?' as it was Boris had a more than reasonable proposal, to demand there is a threshold that needs to be crossed before a strike can be called.

    The Paxman dripping with cynicism interviewing technique has its time and place, but not every interview, its becoming tedious the way its cropping up in every interview done.

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  • 5. At 6:14pm on 07 Sep 2010, bright-eyedwendym wrote:

    When Chris Bryant MP was interviewed last night on Channel 4 News Jon Snoa was much less pleasant to him than Eddie.Shouldn't they be asked a bit more about why they couldn't seem to do anything about this apparent 'threat to democracy'( this from Tom Watson- pretty much seen as one of Gordon Brown's heavies) when they were actually in government? Sorry, there's a touch of the old bias here, guys.

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  • 6. At 6:15pm on 07 Sep 2010, bright-eyedwendym wrote:

    PS That should read Jon Snow.

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  • 7. At 6:16pm on 07 Sep 2010, skoubhie_dubh wrote:

    Justa reply to yesterdays pm blog

    #32. Grande Noix wrote:

    "While much you say regarding the electoral shenanigans is true, you must be more careful. The recently banned (garden centre) drug has NOT been linked to any deaths or other serious side effects."


    I don't think I actually said that the garden centre drug was in that category although it was the main suspect in at least two deaths earlier this year before further research was conducted. I would imagine if you take fertiliser as a 'high' you should really expect to have a few wee side effects that might not agree with your health.

    The answer was a response to a previous post which asked how to identify which 'highs' would be illegal and suggested, I assume with 'a bit of toung in cheek' coffee and similar stimulants freely available.

    The list of side affects were a list from concerned authorities in Scotland about the types of effects being found in various drugs which cause health concerns.

    The fertiliser comment was in a new paragraph and was to indicate that this one had already been identified in Scotland as the first to be banned in the country and was given as an example of the types of substances which would/could be targeted for control.

    I think my differentiation was the side effects which would be expected over a range of substances and a specific point which is in the news at present.

    I purposely did not name any of the substances being discussed as I would rather anyone wishing to use them would do the ground work themselves in finding the information and supply route rather than getting any help from me.

    Hope that helps.

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  • 8. At 6:20pm on 07 Sep 2010, elcej wrote:

    Is it me of is Eddie getting a little aggressive in his interviews these days.

    I'm not necessarily a Boris fan but droning on about his use of the word "hope" I thought was a bit much. As if you are desperately trying to catch him out rather than just interview him.

    What do you expect him to do to avoid a tube strike during the Olympics?
    1) Pass legislation to ban all strike action during the Olympics
    2) Give them all double pay during the olympics?
    3) Or expect (ie. "hope") that the unions realise they would lose all sympathy and would be digging their own grave to strike during the Olympics?

    I'm sure (and hope) the unions will 'Back Britain' during the Olympics.

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  • 9. At 6:22pm on 07 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    IMOORE: I disagree. I thought the interview with Boris was rather good. He didn't answer Eddie's initial question about having broken his manifesto promises and tried to duck and dive, as most politicians do and Eddie wasn't going to let him get away with it.

    Eddie uses many different interview styles and techniques depending on to whom he is speaking - it is this variety of style and approach that makes him such a good interviewer (IMHO).

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  • 10. At 6:28pm on 07 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    edward@8: if I may make a suggestion to solve any potential tube strikes during the Olympics, or indeed at any other time. I propose the London Underground workers adopt the strike actions of the Japanese. That is: the workers all turn up, the trains run on time (well, they would in Japan, wouldn't they?) and the only difference is that the commuters are not charged for tickets. It's costs the company/organisation in loss of revenue without inconveniencing the public.

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  • 11. At 6:38pm on 07 Sep 2010, Grande Noix wrote:

    7. skoubhie_dubh
    "Hope that helps."

    Aye, but the 'fertiliser high' was later given a pretty clean bill of health. An example of rushing to judgement methinks. Many of the symptoms you list are common (or uncommon) side effects of drugs which get bprescribed by doctors...

    Slainte

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  • 12. At 7:15pm on 07 Sep 2010, elcej wrote:

    10 M'Lady
    The Japanese way sounds very interesting. Do the 'striking' workers get paid for turning up and doing their job as normal.... or are they docked a day's wages since they are not charging the customer?

    The former would hand too much power to the 'strikers' since they have nothing to lose by 'striking'

    Actually, talking of not charging passengers.... I think that's a great idea. I would vote for free public transport for all UK tax payers.... and fund it through UK taxes. That'll get people out of their cars!

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  • 13. At 7:25pm on 07 Sep 2010, MoC wrote:

    I think Eddie's interviewing is getting significantly more assertive (not aggressive) these days and that is A Good Thing.
    Someone, somewhere needs to hold them all to account.

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  • 14. At 7:32pm on 07 Sep 2010, elcej wrote:

    More FEEDBACK.....

    On the tax bill/refund thing......

    1) I think broadcasting interviewees comments like "opening a letter that is demanding a large tax bill might be catastrophic for someone with a heart condition" (I paraphrase) is sensationalising this news story a bit too far. Do you have any scientific theories that opening large tax bills can kill someone? Just because some goofy interviewee makes a stupid comment like that doesn't mean you need to broadcast it.

    2) There seems to be a great deal of coverage on tax avoidance/evasion on these tax bills. We all need to contribute to society. Is the BBC's position that no one should pay their contribution if they can get away with it. Recipients of these tax bills could even think of it as an interest free loan. Also, I heard no tax accountants suggesting people refuse a tax refund because they had given all the correct information to HMRC at the time so it was HMRC's fault.

    Surely we (and the BBC) should be encouraging everyone to pay their taxes. If some people evade/avoid paying it just means the rest of us have to pay more.

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  • 15. At 7:50pm on 07 Sep 2010, MoC wrote:

    Phone-tapping: was Eddie's phone hacked?
    Or the phones of Humphreys, Davis, Montague, Webb or Naughtie?
    I think we should be told. Get that Nacker of the Yard chap back on and have Eddie ask him a few straight questions.
    Please.

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  • 16. At 7:55pm on 07 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    edward@12: my understanding is that, as with most strikes, those striking do not get paid. Under the Japanese system, instead of the public getting annoyed with the strikers, as the latter are pitching up for work as normal and it doesn't effect the commuting day, they retain more public sympathy. This has the knock-on effect of putting more pressure on the "bosses"/"company owners" as, with every passing day, they lose not only revenue but public sympathy.

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  • 17. At 8:09pm on 07 Sep 2010, IMOORE wrote:

    9/

    "He didn't answer Eddie's initial question"

    I think he did, he said it was twaddle.

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  • 18. At 8:12pm on 07 Sep 2010, Ellis P Otter wrote:

    I wonder whether all of this celebration of the Blitz is really helpful.

    Having drafted about twenty posts and deleted them, I think that's all I'm prepared to say as I self censored a number family stories that supported my point but would have opened scars that still bring pain to close relatives.

    In summary, war is not something to celebrate. Remember, learn from... but not to transform into upbeat fun broadcasting.

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  • 19. At 8:12pm on 07 Sep 2010, MoC wrote:

    @17 - did he really? That's shockingly rude behaviour. Perhaps he was using rudeness against Mr. Mair to avoid actually providing a substantive answer. I hope you will be suitably OUTraged.

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  • 20. At 8:36pm on 07 Sep 2010, elcej wrote:

    18 EPO
    I tend to agree.
    I wish, rather than celebrating Victory in Europe day we would celebrate Peace in Europe day.... and the same goes for VJ day.

    With 20 million killed in WWII, there is no victory.

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  • 21. At 9:28pm on 07 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    Ellis and edward: I would like to second your sentiments. I was puzzled as to why there was suddenly IMHO all this Blitz stuff and, like both of you, would far prefer a celebration of peace.

    "With 20 million killed in WWII, there is no victory." Hear, hear.

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  • 22. At 10:53pm on 07 Sep 2010, Mindclearly wrote:

    The whole light discussion was a missed opportunity.

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  • 23. At 11:01pm on 07 Sep 2010, Big Sister wrote:

    I suspect it is less 'celebrating' than 'marking', in memory of those who were killed and the others who worked to save lives and restore some sense of normality. Nevertheless, I also feel it will have stirred up memories that some will have preferred to have remained undisturbed.

    It was a terrible time, from all accounts (my family lived in London at the time, and my mother has many a tale to tell about it). Perhaps it is well that the younger generation should be made aware of the horror of that time, if only to curb any enthusiasm for war and its consequences.

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  • 24. At 05:48am on 08 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    Big Sis: "if only to curb any enthusiasm for war and its consequences" but it hasn't, has it? Certainly not amongst the political leaders.

    The younger generation should be learning from what is happening now in Iraq and Afghanistan - no need to go back 70 years and glorify the 'spirit of the Blitz'. I find every news report that another young person has been killed quite chilling - another life lost, for what? It all seems totally without proper foundation and IMHO a lot more to do with economics than anything else - as are most wars.

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  • 25. At 07:20am on 08 Sep 2010, Redheylin wrote:

    7 I don't think I actually said that the garden centre drug was in that category although it was the main suspect in at least two deaths earlier this year before further research was conducted.

    No, there was evidence that "two" people who died had taken it. In fact, I know one young man who died a couple of months ago and was found to have taken it. I also know a great many more who had no ill-effects - though I do not think it did them any good - and I am pretty sure it was not the cause of death in his case either. And I do not want more friends to die, so I have enquired, thanks.

    On a similarly mournful note I draw attention to the sudden and strange death of Mike Edwards/Deva Pramada, ex-Electric Light Orchestra and baroque cello, an old friend.

    ===

    I would imagine if you take fertiliser as a 'high' you should really expect to have a few wee side effects that might not agree with your health.

    It is not a fertiliser (plant food) at all, really, that was just a cover.

    ==

    The answer was a response to a previous post which asked how to identify which 'highs' would be illegal and suggested, I assume with 'a bit of toung in cheek' coffee and similar stimulants freely available.

    Not at all. Chemists are experimenting with amphetamine-like substances, because just one change in the molecule and it is legal. Ecstasy is similar, this M1/CAT/Miaow/Bubble also, caffeine also.

    ==

    The list of side affects were a list from concerned authorities in Scotland about the types of effects being found in various drugs which cause health concerns.

    Well, if you will forgive me, that is misleading. Such actions are rearing a whole generation who take no notice at all of government health warnings.

    ==

    The fertiliser comment was in a new paragraph and was to indicate that this one had already been identified in Scotland as the first to be banned in the country and was given as an example of the types of substances which would/could be targeted for control.

    And logically that would include caffeine - which can indeed kill you in pure form.

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  • 26. At 08:48am on 08 Sep 2010, Joker wrote:

    Morning all, thanks for the comments. Before I address some of the points you've made, can I just say that last night is the first time I have ever seen Eddie on the phone whilst the programme was on air! It was a pre-recorded bit, and I think it was to do with the no show of his Winnebago. But to business:
    1) Floods- I agree. Every day our forward planning operation provides a couple of items for us- take the pressure of poor old Ed, you understand- and that particular item was billed to us as being an opportunity to hear lots of strong material from the Swat Valley. i don't think it lived up to billing, so sorry about that.
    3/ 14 on the tax letters. Phil, when I spoke before the interview to Jon Whiting, tax expert and all round good thing, I asked him more or less the same question- thousands of letters have gone out, but no-one seems to have received one...why? He pointed out the obvious- the Revenue send everything 2nd class! In view of this, I thought our case study was pretty good- he was caught by the same problem at the root of this episode, but he'd already noticed it and been in contact with the IR. And no, Edwardjecele (14), I don't think he or we were 'sensationalising' the issue to make the point about heart attacks- the interviewee was there to explain his experience and he was expressing how he felt about it. The audience would clearly have been able to judge that in context.
    And finally, Eddie's interview style. It's always a balance between wanting to hold people to account in an interview with limited time, and not wanting to be or sound aggressive. Personally I think Eddie's in a terrific groove at the moment, but I am always interested to hear how it sounds to you all, so feel free to let us know.*

    Oh I could go on but think that's enough for now.
    Hurrah for Carolyn, who's here for ten days.
    A bientot,

    Jo

    *Ha! As if you'd hold back...

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  • 27. At 08:57am on 08 Sep 2010, Lady_Sue wrote:

    Jo, thanks for your feedback on our feedback - always good to know that you are reading our posts.

    Sequin for ten days is something to look forward to.

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  • 28. At 09:16am on 08 Sep 2010, Alan_N wrote:

    Many thanks Jo.

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  • 29. At 10:05am on 08 Sep 2010, elcej wrote:

    Jo, many thanks. I highly appreciate your comments

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  • 30. At 10:26am on 08 Sep 2010, Gillianian wrote:

    Thanks Jo - I totally agree with you about Eddie's "groove" - he has many different interviewing techniques, and the sensitivity to know which one is most appropriate for any given situation and individual- which is only to be expected, as he's a "seasoned" professional.
    What makes him outstanding, in my opinion,is that he also knows when to shut up, in order to give his interviewees enough rope to hang themselves by - as was heard to great effect in Any Questions two weeks ago.

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  • 31. At 10:33am on 08 Sep 2010, Grande Noix wrote:

    Thanks Jo.

    So long Eddie, and Hello Sequin


    Winnebago eh? (Other gas-guzzling indulgences are available)

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