Talk about Newsnight

A blog and forum.

Tuesday, 17 July, 2007

  • Newsnight
  • 17 Jul 07, 04:10 PM

By tonight's presenter, Gavin Esler:

soviet_203.jpgWhat next? We hope to hear from one of the key players in the diplomatic stand off - but in true Cold War style, I can't tell you who it is unless you have security clearance. All will be revealed at 10.30pm (if our guest turns up).
Russia warns UK over expulsions

Several reports out today claim that inequality now is much worse than 20 or 30 years ago. One tool that the government hoped would tackle the opportunity gap - SureStart - also came in for criticism. MPs said it was failing to target those who most need it. So what is the government doing to tackle the problem?
Wealth gap 'widest in 40 years'

Ealing Southall by-election
It's turning into one of the most colourful by-elections of recent times. Party defections, compromising photographs and some interesting accusations in those election leaflets. Of course we had to send Michael Crick to Ealing Southall to find out what is going on.
In full: Ealing Southall candidates

Organ Donations
Instead of signing up for organ donor cards - "opting in" - should the state presume we agree to be organ donors unless we opt out? The Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson said so today. But doesn't that presume that the state somehow owns our bodies? We'll debate on the programme, but you can tell us what you think by clicking here.
Everyone 'should donate organs'

Is it time to opt out of apathy?

  • Newsnight
  • 17 Jul 07, 02:59 PM

England's chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, has called for a system that assumes everyone is a potential organ donor - unless they expressly request not to be.

Surveys have indicated that as many as 70% of people want their organs donated after death, but only 20% of the population are on the NHS Organ Donor Register.

So, is creating a system where you have to "opt out" of organ donation the best way to tackle the problem of donor shortage?

And is this kind of "soft paternalism" the best way to make an apathetic nation engage with the issues affecting our lives? What else might we be automatically enrolled into?

We’ll be discussing this story on the programme tonight.

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