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Question Time



Last Updated: Friday, 16 March 2007, 09:21 GMT
What you've said
Find out what you had to say about Question Time on Thursday, 15 March, 2007 from Newport.

The topics discussed were:

The following comments reflect the balance of opinion we have received:


Audience question: Is the government taking the right decision to renew our Trident nuclear system now?

You said:

Text: How can we have nukes, but tell others they can't?
LG, Truro

Text: What is the point of Westminster debating Trident when THE ALMIGHTY BLAIR has already decided?
L Phil, Barry

I must be in the minority; I am very pleased that the Trident nuclear weapons system is going to be replaced to defend our country against possible attack from known and unknown enemies. It is vital that Trident be replaced when it comes to the end of its life in 2024 and that planning begins now. We cannot afford to be without effective defence against attack. I am disappointed that 95 Labour MPs rejected new weapons altogether and wonder how they think we are going to defend the country from our enemies? It is alright arguing that the money could be better spent on education and the NHS. Fine, but it is no good having a good education system and NHS if it cannot be defended. We can all sleep easier in our beds knowing that Trident is going to be replaced in my view.
Steve Fuller, Hove, East Sussex

Text: Cancel Trident and the Olympics and there would be enough spare cash to make TV phone-ins free.
Gary B, Uxbridge

Text: If the government didn't do all it could to protect us, we would be the first to ask why!
David, Glenrothes

In light of the soaring costs of the 2012 Olympic games one wonders just how much faith should be placed in the government's published figures for the Trident replacement programme. Why are no ceilings set for over spends and when will ministers responsible for the various debacles be made an example off? Does this government expect the tax payers of the country to forever bail it out of it's own mistakes ?
John Graham, Glasgow

Text: How can this be justified? What nuclear threat do we face?
James, Highclere

Text: Trident means I haven't had to endure what my grandfather did between 1914 and 1918.
Robert, Halesowen

Text: The concept of the just war allows for a new beginning, Trident can only mean the end.
Jim, Shotts

The yawning divide in the Trident debate is how those in favour of it talk of the future, and those against it talk about its irrelevance to threats today. Yet both are right. Trident isn't relevant to today's threats. But more importantly, this is a decision about the future, and we don't know what the future holds. As a credible nuclear deterrent is the ultimate insurance policy, the government is right. It's surely better to be prepared for the unknown, than be caught out by a serious threat. If delaying the decision could leave us without protection when no-one knows what the global situation will be, then it's right to take the decision now.
Stuart Coster, London

Text: Why not spend the money on the real threats we face?
David, Queensgate

I'll vote for nuclear disarmament when the fences come down at the entrance to Downing Street.
James Fairlie, Leicester

Text: Tough on Trident, tough on the causes of Trident.
OG, Bristol

Text: I think we should look after our forces now, they still don't have the right kit.
Kev, Soton

Given the supposed level of technology countries such as Iran and North Korea have at present, don't we have a certain amount of breathing space? Why not simply service the existing Trident programme?
Simon Ledward, Blackpool

Text: Trident - the 21st Century's unnecessary evil.
Mac, Leics

Text: Ms Short - what about Korea and Iran!
Karen, Essex

Text: America is our nuclear deterrent. Let them do something for us!
KW, Aberdeen

We live in a dynamic environment. What is today, will not be tomorrow. Who knows what's around the corner over the next several years. We need to be prepared for anything. We should not live today and pay tomorrow.
Ian Smith, Bradford, West Yorkshire

London Olympics

Audience question: At over 9bn, is the Olympics still a good cause?

You said:

Text: Turn the Olympic village into homes. At London prices, they are 2m apiece.
Falla, Birmingham

Why can't the 9bn for the Olympics be spent in venues throughout the UK, so that domestic traffic and foreign visitors can be spread out, rather than concentrated in London? The legacy will then be a variety of sporting facilities for everyone to enjoy. I think the regeneration of east London should be considered entirely separately.
Geoffrey Allen, Watford

Text: It won't matter, it will never be ready on time.
Bob, Orkney

Why does the government pursue prestigious events such as the Olympic games when it can't get a grip of the basics?
Simon Ledward, Blackpool

I'm not sure the Conservative party can comment on the cost of the Olympics, after the Dome debacle.
Kevin Rowley, Romford

Text: London got the Olympics - let them pay for them.
Rhian, Coventry

Text: The Olympics might help fight the obesity problem.
I Mofter, Bedfordshire

Text: Sounds like the Dome all over again.
John, Cumbria

Managing directors would be sacked if they mismanaged a budget of this kind! Why not sack Tessa Jowell?
Chris, Oxshott

Text: What about the profit that the country will make?
Al, Dundee

Climate change bill

Audience question: Does the climate change bill go far enough in combating CO2 emissions?

You said:

Text: Oh no! Not global yawning again.
Roy, Redhill

Peter Hitchens does not understand science. It is very rare to achieve certainty in science, even in laboratory conditions. For global warming, these would have to involve two Earths, one to pollute, the other to leave pristine, as a control, to see what happened. Clearly not possible. Therefore scientists study, and weigh the available evidence, and come to a conclusion based on a balance of probability. Those scientists have done that seriously, and have no vested interests in the oil industry, nearly all agree that: (a) global warming is taking place and (b) humans are to a large extent responsible. Thus, it would be wise to employ the precautionary principle and take measures to counteract global warming.
Nick Hodgetts, Grantham

Text:The biggest threat to the environment is politicians.
Keith B, Birmingham

Text: Ask the Chinese about carbon emissions.
Al, Scotland

If an overwhelming consensus in the scientific community isn't enough to convince Peter Hitchens on the threat of global warming, then what is? I suspect only the water level as it creeps up to neck height!
Steve Tudor, Winchester

Text: We've always had occasional extremes in weather.
David, Godalming

I agree we should reduce our carbon emissions. I feel strongly about recycling and new technologies to do this. However its seems very unscientific to attribute climate change to one small element of a much bigger system.
Steve Hiscock, Wiltshire

Text: Global warming? End of days? Game on.
Curly, Derby

Thank goodness for Peter Hitchens and his comments on (man-made) Global Warming. It's about time that the orthodoxy was challenged without challengers being treated as heretics. And - his comments about Al Gore were spot on.
Madeleine, Guernsey

Text: Why should I be taxed more for a flight when I don't own a car?
LC, Edinburgh

Nobody seems to take into account the emissions of war. The Iraq, Afghani and other wars must have a massive carbon footprint. This makes our attempts to reduce our footprints laughable. Its a government distraction.
Rick Manning, Stroud, Gloucestershire

Text: Why are the public penalised for global warming through taxes? It's the industry that should pay up!
Baz, London

If our political leaders are prepared to go to war over oil reserves but not over the destruction of the rain forests they needn't bother to lecture me about leaving my TV on standby. And Trident missiles won't deter the rising sea any more than they will deter Osama Bin laden.
Richard Porter, Maidenhead

It is great that we are trying to reduce carbon emission but how about developing countries like China and India who would not sacrifice economic growth over this issue. As a developed nation we have burnt coal in the past to get here. How do we tell them not to?
Hyo, Birmingham

Global warming is not a new thing, it is a natural occurrence which has happened many times before. The government is just using it as another excuse to squeeze more money from the population.
Carol Underhill, Sutton Coldfield

Text: I understand the hole in the Ozone layer is now closing, global warming will no doubt reverse.
Mal, Hull

Text: I think global warming is a load of hot air. .
Jim, Glasgow

No wonder Peter Hitchens looks depressed. Surrounded by politicians who fudge every issue and rubbish any idea that does not fit their dogmatic views. They always know the answer they want and are selective in their choice of "evidence". It is high time they started scrutinising the science concerning climate patterns especially if they intend to send us all back to the stone age.
E Thomson, Troon

In view of the clear evidence that increased temperature causes increased CO2 and not the other way around and that sun spot activity causes temp change, why does no one speak up for the truth?
M. Ford, Altrincham

Text: Is climate change the new "cold war"?.
Brett, Surrey

Has anyone (conveniently) forgotten the doom and gloom forecast in the 70's of the impending mini-ice age!
Bobbie Alexander, London

Text: Global warming is a natural effect caused by sun spots and solar flares.
Kay, Bagon

Text: Dave Cameron should stop flying round the world to have his photo taken.

If the government really wants to do something about the environment why do they not pass a new law stating that all new housing projects must by 2010 have solar or wind power i.e. 20% or more on a site. and then start to the same for all new shopping centres being built. We've got a lot of flat roofs in this country that we could use and a lot of wind to.
Martin Evans , Worcester

Text: Climate change is the con of the century.
Mike, Oxon

Let's go Green. Let's drop Trident renewal and save the large carbon output that it would produce making the submarines and handling the nuclear material. The rest of the country can then give up any recycling on the carbon trading.
Trevor Burridge, Chelmsford

The climate change supposition that CO2 emissions are leading climate is fundamentally flawed. Ice core samples in the Antarctic show that global warming precedes CO2 rises in the atmosphere. I agree that we should all reduce the use of unrenewable energy sources, but why do we have to be patronised in to thinking that global warming is being driven by CO2 emissions. It seems it is just an excuse to tax and be seen to be green. Invest in renewable energy sources and drive forward the reduction in CO2 emissions but please don't keep quoting scientific reasoning as being "accepted". It isn't. They are simply theories which have serious flaws.
S.Moore, Wolverhampton

Text: I'm a scientist. Global warming is real. Deal with it.
Matt, Exeter

Text: Most people used to think the world was flat.
Jim, Aberdeen

Global Warming has become 'Global Hysteria'. The number of people who believe the 'CO2 causes global warming' propaganda isn't surprising, I was just pleased to hear some dissenting voices. Yes we should all be 'Green', recycle everything, save energy, buy free trade and hug trees, but don't let politicians and scientists hijack the global warming debate to justify nuclear energy, they've got the science 180 degrees out of phase.
David, Bolton

Anyone who lived through WWII knows exactly what a wasteful world we live in. We have arrogant politicians barely out of their disposable nappies telling us how to change our lifestyles, while they rattle around in mansions large enough to house a community, jetting off to even larger mansions for their holidays. They clearly have no intention of changing their lifestyles.
Brian Anderson, Castle Douglas


Audience question: Should Blair's principle of intervention on humanitarian grounds apply to Zimbabwe?

You said:

Text: Zimbabwe must be the most desperate country on the planet. Why is nobody acting?
Flossie, Pentlow

Text: Zimbabwe doesn't have any oil so Bush and Blair won't go there.
Sam, Bradford

Text: No, because armed intervention doesn't work, does it?
Bill, Penryn

Peter Hitchens clearly has no understanding of the humanitarian imperative in the world, or Britain's obligations to her former colonial possessions. We have a track record of intervention in former colonies, as witnessed in Sierra Leone. It is a disgrace that we have not intervened militarily previously, and we certainly should in the future - the only issue being where to find the troops from! A small British lead force (with a sizable Special Forces element to snatch Mugabe and deliver him to The Hague for trial), to create the conditions for an international force (under either NATO or the UN) to take over peace keeping and state building seems to be the best way forward. I know every member of the Armed Forces would be proud to take part in such an operation.
James Morgan, Liverpool, UK

Text: The trouble is Blair's already bitten off more than he can chew with Iraq!
Mick, Devon

Text: Blair is a busted flush on foreign affairs, so Zimbabwe is lost.
BO, London

Text: Mugabe should be held to account.
Peter, Nailsea

It's our moral duty to step in and take concerted action against the continued excesses of the Mugabe regime! They are a disgrace to the African continent and I shudder everyday at the total lack of will and morals on the part of the South African Govt to do anything to end this chaos when they have it in their power to do so speedily - cry the beloved country, long live Zimbabwe.
Paul Hiller, Brussels

Text: This country has the blood of the people of Zimbabwe on its hands.
Pat, W Midlands

Text: When is Jack Straw going to see Mugabe again?
John, Chester

Charity starts at home - Let's sort out our own country's problems like Peter Hitchens said, and then we can think about sorting out other countries' problems!
Chris, Oxshott

Text: Women's life expectancy in Zimbabwe is 34.
Terry, Burnley

Text: Mugabe wants nothing to do with Britain - he tells his people we are the cause of his problems.
CC, Tiverton

David Cameron

Audience question: Is David Cameron's hair the only thing about him that's moving to the left?

You said:

Text: Hair today, gone tomorrow! Ta ra 'Dave'!
Stevie, Southampton

Text: I suppose Blair's busy parting the waves rather than his hair.
Paul. Doncaster

Text: Only right is right. What is left? .
Marg, Staffs

Text: Parting on the right is now a parting on the left. Come back Pete Townsend.
Jon, Nottingham

Text: It's the obligatory anti-Tory question..
Phil, Motherwell

General comments

You said:

Text: It's nice to have a cheeky chappie like Lembit on.
Peter, Kent

Great to see Peter back. What a bag of common sense!
K, Aberdeen

This show was a perfect example of how pointless and vacuous modern politics, and politicians, have become. The only meaningful and informed debate was between Clare Short and Peter Hitchins.
Joe Thompson, Stoke-on-Trent

Text: Clare is like a breath of fresh air. She tells it like it is!
Mac, Glasgow

Text: Peter Hitchens is the only sensible voice on the panel.
J Martin

Text: Clare Short for PM, she's the only one who talks sense.
Louise, Essex

I would like to agree with the last member of the audience to speak. The absence of a Plaid Cymru spokesman on the panel from Newport this close to the Assembly elections, when the three other major parties were represented, is unacceptable. It was noted that Plaid will be present at some later date, but will this be in front of a Welsh studio audience? This is just another example of bias by the BBC.
Dafydd Pritchard, Aberystwyth

Disclaimer: The BBC will put up as many of your comments as possible but we cannot guarantee that all e-mails will be published. The BBC reserves the right to edit comments that are published.

Question Time from Newport

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