Talk about Newsnight

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Monday, 14 January, 2008

  • Newsnight
  • 14 Jan 08, 05:31 PM

Jeremy presents tonight's programme.

Northern Rock signIs nationalisation now inevitable for Northern Rock? Tomorrow the bank's shareholders have called an extraordinary general meeting - to give them a chance to demand from the board more of a say in the troubled mortgage lender's future. But can they and should they stop the government taking control? Stephanie Flanders reports and we'll debate.

Peter Hain received the backing from the Prime Minister in the Sun this morning - at least for the moment. Mr Hain maintains that there is nothing wrong with any of the money he's taken - no conflict of interest. Paul Mason is investigating whether that's true. The Conservatives want more answers. We've also put some questions to them about David Cameron's declarations. Hopefully they'll provide us with the answers to them and we'll let you know about all of it on the programme.

Would the roads be safer - and smoother - without traffic lights? A personal - and polemical - report from one campaigner on the programme tonight which we'll debate after - read his views here and join the debate here.

Finally you might have been relieved NOT to see luvvies getting emotional at the Golden Globes ceremony - cancelled because of the Hollywood writers strike. But spare a thought for the British film industry. We hear how going without the gongs may be very damaging to one successful bit of British business.

The case against traffic lights

  • Newsnight
  • 14 Jan 08, 12:57 PM

redlight203.jpgDo we need traffic lights? Campaigner Martin Cassini doesn't think so. He says, "They take our eyes off the road. They make us stop when it's safe to go. They increase journey times. They maximise congestion, which costs the economy £20bn a year. They maximise emissions and fuel use from the stop-start drive cycle. They deface streetscapes. They cost the earth to install and run".

Read his full article on why they should go and the system of "peaceful anarchy" he says should replace them - and watch his highly entertaining report tonight.

But what do you think - has he got a point?

Prospects: Monday, January 14, 2008

  • Newsnight
  • 14 Jan 08, 11:32 AM

Simon Enright is today's programme producer. Here is his early email to the team.

It's January 14th - my wife's birthday. Can I just make it clear that she asked for the garden waste incinerator... so why was she so upset? Ideas of what I buy to get myself out from under her opprobrium gratefully received.

hain203_140108.jpgIdeas also welcome for what we should put in the rest of the programme. I still don't feel Peter Hain has properly explained why he needed a Think Tank to channel money to him. Maybe if he gave an interview he could explain… If he can't/won't give any reasons should we give some for him? And why does Gordon Brown think it is all out of his hands (The Sun pg 2)? Is he not the PM? Can't he sack him if he wants?

The Northern Rock shareholders are meeting tomorrow to decide what to do with their bank. Their bank? What chance it is nationalised, who would benefit and how would it work?

We also have film about traffic lights from Martin Cassini - would the world be a better and safer place without them?

bin150.jpgBut we defo need one more story…..Should we do

- The end of Bio-fuels. The reality we showed in our film nearly a year ago - watch it here - is that they are not a viable option. The EU is now rethinking its policy

- Paul Burrell appears at the Diana Inquest today. Is this a story Newsnight should do and how?

- And no special ceremony for the Golden Globes… Should this be the future of award ceremonies?

All ideas - especially to rescue my tumbling stock on the home front - gratefully received.

All the best


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