Talk about Newsnight

Latest programme

Prospects for Wednesday, 28 May, 2008

  • Newsnight
  • 28 May 08, 10:15 AM

Today's output editor is Simon Enright - here's his morning e-mail to the production team:

Hello All,

Lots of stories around but what should be our take?

Why were there power cuts yesterday? Is there a problem with energy that we are missing? And what do Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling hope to achieve by meeting some oil representatives... Anything?

Peter Marshall is pursuing story about Binyam Mohammed - the British resident in Guantanamo who is about to go on trial for his life before a military commission. But the British Government has allegations that the only evidence against him was both false and based on torture.

Nepal is about to end nearly 250 years of Royal rule and become a republic. Should we cover OR should we do Lebanon where a new administration is about to come to power hopefully ending the Hezbollah inspired instability in the country.

And Paul Mason takes a look at what the protests of May 68 were really about. And who did Mary Whitehouse think was the international threat to the British system?

Or is there something else we should do?

Let me know what you think and come with ideas to the 1030 meeting.

All the best



  • Comment number 1.

    How about covering the EUs plans to destroy the Ind-Dem group by changing the membership quotas? Even federalist Lib-Dem MEPs are saying its undemocratic...

  • Comment number 2.

    Why power cuts? This is a definite investigation for something smells of either profiteering or giving a message to whoever that we are at the limit of electrical power supply. It could be another pre-curser to a "Winter of Discontent" as everyone seems to be jumping on the anti-Government bandwaggon.

    Do you recall this time last year, when the nuclear option was being mooted, that people were saying that if we go a severe winter there would be power cuts?

    I know we all love conspiracy theories and plots but for all these stations to go down at once does make me smell a rat.
    Go on then, its all Brown's fault to divert attention.

  • Comment number 3.

    Anyone else taken with the absurdity of Victoria Klimbie's mother, an African woman living in Africa, as she did at the time in her child's murder at the hands of an African woman in who's hands she'd placed the child, coming to Britain "to attend a conference on child care" held by the foundation named after the child. May I take a wild guess that this august body will place blame for all things at the door of British people and institutions, and that the conference and her trip will be paid for by the ignored and disenfranchised British voter/taxpayer in some way?

    Dratted business of working for a living, prevented me complimenting you people yesterday, but I must say how encouraging it is when you see a whole raft of perceptive
    analytical posts from Bashful, Brossen, occultations, Guevara, Cookieducker, barrie
    ( of course) and others too numerous to mention. Well-informed, non-accepting sons-of- bitches everyone.

  • Comment number 4.

    SPONPLAGUE (It's spreading!)

    As the plague almost certainly arose at the same time as the Maastrict Treaty, one more iniquity is unlikely to amount to much. However, do you have a link to your source sponplague? I am intrigued.

  • Comment number 5.


    Dear Grumpy, reading my thoughts again. No, I won't tell which, but I WILL visit you in Thought Prison.
    I remain: a never-accepting son-of-a-bitch,
    ever your chum-in-profound-barminess.

  • Comment number 6.

    On the topic of plugging the pulling of plugs...

    I have been intrigued to find in my in-box a plea from FoE (linked (if not hyperly any more;( via here: ) at the same time as browsing across such as this from the BBC that suggests there may well be questions still worth asking:

    Seems there is much going on in the name of energy supply and, at the same time, even more in 'complement' in the name of green.

    Now, I am first to admit much of it is very difficult to get one's head around, but at the very least I'd like to retain the option of finding out... and having the opportunity to have my say if it looks like it matters.

  • Comment number 7.

    Why not more coverage of Pakistan? Surely this is the most pertinent to us, although I have huge sympathy for the Lebanese, due to the "war on terror"?

    But what is the deal with Musharraf now, if he goes or is impeached is there another general waiting to seize power? How did the judges reinstatement pan out? How will they react to Obama sending US troops over the border in pursuit of the Taleban? Is the situation stabilising in favour of democracy or is the Taleban influence spreading?

    On energy I have had a query for a long time. The oil companies are not THAT diversified. There does indeed appear to be an oncoming carbon shortfall by 2020 or sooner if people got the demographics wrong - probable. So why aren't they - and the markets - more worried? Discoveries aren't likely to be in easy to reach, secure, places as the Beeb said yesterday watching the big boat take the platform out to the Bay of Hurricanes.

    Therefore the push to greener energy sources are irresistable. The nuclear "hidden costs" and terrorist targets mean they are only favourites with politicians who are influenced by big corporations (come on down Bambi). Are we investing enough - and why not?

    How does a spin doctor spin not having viable energy supplies for a population that is due to increase by 50% in the blink of an eye? Remember people population growth is an exponential curve ......! UN discussions on population levels? SOON!

    For my daily fix:

    Is the UK prepared in practical terms for Scotland saying yes to independence in 2010? Even if the SNP loses they will almost certainly be the most powerful party in Scotland for the forseeable future and so will get there in the end. As an English guy I just want to see a harmonious separation that does not damage all parties and relationships.

    Will Kirsty Wark be a good European and stay working in London or return to a burgeoning national culture? Ah the pipes.

    I am looking for a job once the PFI funded hospital in Edinburgh I am going to gives me the all clear in a few hours from my heart problems! By the way who pays for the PFI if Scotland separates?

    Viva MI5.

  • Comment number 8.


    Hi Junkk.
    I doubt planning of such things as motorways and nuclear power stations will be out of EU control for long (ref. website). As for nuclear power itself, surely its a fossil fuel? The Sun and moon, one way or another, are the obvious choices for long term energy. But government is short term
    by its very nature. In technical terms we are stuffed until the panic starts - then we are stuffed.

  • Comment number 9.

    The Canadian government and court system has become involved in the case of a Canadian being brought before the special military "court" in Guantanamo.

    It is insisting that requested Canadian intelligence data be made available to defense counsel.

    Britain should also become involved- otherwise, Britain will become a party to the shame and corruption of the US system.

  • Comment number 10.

  • Comment number 11.

    I normally agree with much of what The Independent says, but I don't know if I agree with its line on green taxes. It says that the govt must stand firm but if the whole idea of a green tax is to put people off choosing the most polluting things in life, in favour of the more environmentally friendly, then what is the point in having green taxes that punish those who have already bought something- surely it can't be classed as a green tax then? Though I do agree with green taxes generally- but I do think they should be hypothecated.

    I had a look around television centre yesterday, and I glimpsed into the newsnight office a couple of times- it all looked very busy and productive!!!

  • Comment number 12.

    This EU parliamentary groups issue is interesting, here are some more links:

    Most recent article in the European Voice (bit more detailed, giving %s rather than just absolute numbers):

    MEP Corbett's letter to the EV relating to the initial 7 February article:

    The initial 7 February article (no longer directly available on EV, viewable in PDF or HTML)

  • Comment number 13.

    THANKS (Cloe and sponplague)

    I am now even more aware of my powerlessness.

  • Comment number 14.

    Could I endorse Barrie's 13. Powerless but cheerfully and implacably rebellious. And thanx Xie-Ping for info on Canadian trial. The repercussions of Bush and Blair's enslavement to the Jewish lobby and Israeli foriegn policy will just roll on through time and place.


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites