tvParty Election Broadcasts

Labour Party Election Broadcasts from 1992

Note:  the text is based on Dr Michael Pearce's transcripts of tapes held at the Election Broadcast Archive, University of Leeds.

19th March 1992

NEIL KINNOCK:

We live in a country rich in heritage, in natural resources, and of course most of all rich in the quality of the people. But when you know that the potential is not being used properly it really makes you ask what's happened in these last years? Why has life become so bleak, narrow, insecure for so many of our people? Why is a country that has so much ability to do well not doing better? We've go to see a Britain that makes the most of people's vitality, people's creativity. We've got to ensure that every man and woman, every child gets the chance to bring out the best in themselves. That means making real changes to improve child-care, schools, hospitals, training. It means making basic changes to get jobs, to build houses, and see the streets are clean and safe. That's the kind of change people want. Everybody knows it. It's time for that change now.

JOHN SMITH:

Labour's economic policy starts from one simple common sense fact: the only way to build a strong economy is to make the goods and services that people at home and abroad want to buy. That's how to bring down unemployment, that's how to create the wealth to pay for a top class National Health Service and higher living standards. That's how it's done in Germany, Japan and other successful economies. It's time to pull Britain out of recession and to start to build a strong and a prosperous economy.

GORDON BROWN:

For more than a century Made in Britain has been the guarantee of quality right across the world. But now as British manufacturing declines it's becoming harder and harder to buy British. It's time that Made in Britain becomes the basis of economic success again. To manufacture much more that's made here we'll start by introducing immediate incentives for industrial investment that will help lift us out of recession and lay the foundations for a British prosperity that lasts.

TONY BLAIR:

And it's time to make Britain the best educated and trained nation in Europe, raising school standards by cutting class sizes, making sure every teacher is qualified in the subject they teach, getting every company to invest in training and giving all young people the opportunity to learn a skill. A workforce of quality - that is the way a modern economy succeeds, where you, your children, everyone can develop their potential to the full.

MARGARET BECKETT:

It's time Britain's families got a better deal. Labour will start by investing at least an extra billion pounds in the National Health Service over the next two years as well as an extra six hundred million in our schools. We'll help working mothers by giving tax relief on employer assisted child care and increasing nursery places for three and four year olds. We'll increase child benefit by one hundred and twenty seven pounds a year for a family with two children. We'll raise pensions by an extra eight pounds a week for a couple, five pounds a week for a single person and we'll abolish the poll tax - the tax on families. Under Labour's budget proposals eight out of ten families will be better off. Labour will put families first and about time too.

ROBIN COOK:

If you elect a Labour government we'll end the privatisation of the National Health Service and we'll bring back the hospitals that opted out. We'll modernise our hospitals and we'll start by investing at least an extra billion pounds. Labour created the National Health Service. We need Labour now to save it. It's time for a strong National Health Service - one that we can all rely on. It is our right.

ANN TAYLOR:

It's about time we improved the quality of all our lives. That's why we will make sure that every local community gets first rate local services and why we are committed to a safer Britain with more police officers on the beat and a transport system we can rely on. And we must improve our environment, cut down on air pollution, ensure our rights to safe drinking water. We'll set up an independent green watch dog to cut pollution, clean up our rivers and beaches, anticipating future problems to make Britain and our world a cleaner safer place in which to live.

SMITH:

And can we afford this? Well, as the economy starts to grow again there will be more money to invest. That money must be invested in our industrial base, in our hospitals and schools, and in our social services. A Labour government will introduce a fair system of tax and national insurance. More money needs to be raised to help pay for much needed increases in retirement pensions and in child benefit. We will introduce a new top rate of tax at fifty percent which will apply to incomes over forty thousand pounds per year, and the unfair upper limit on national insurance contributions will be removed. But our reforms of tax allowances and of national insurance will mean that every tax payer with an income of up to twenty two thousand pounds a year will pay less than now and seven hundred and forty thousand tax payers will be taken out of paying tax completely. And of course families with children and pensioners will gain more. Labour's tax reforms, unlike those proposed by the Conservatives, will not be paid for by borrowed money.

BLAIR:

It's time for a Britain where the best values count again.

ANN TAYLOR:

And it's time for a leader whose values are the values of the British people.

KINNOCK:

I've worked to ensure that Labour is forward looking and fit to provide good government for our country. Now I know that we have the talented people and the practical policies needed to deal effectively with the challenges and with the opportunities of the 1990s. This country has enormous strengths. We've got some of the world's best companies and most committed workforces, some of the greatest scientists and inventors, some of the most outstanding artists and sports people. By electing Labour you'll be electing a government to build on those strengths, you'll be electing a government that really believes in Britain and the people of Britain, a government that will invest in Britain and the British people. It's time for a new leader in our country - it's time for a new government with people of energy and vision to bring out the best in Britain. That means making real changes to improve child care, schools, hospitals, training. It means making basic changes to get jobs, to build houses and see the streets are clean and safe. That's the kind of change people want. Everybody knows it. It's time for a change. It's time for Labour.

24th March 1992 ('Jennifer's Ear')

A film (there is no dialogue - on the soundtrack we hear B.B. King singing 'Someone Really Loves You (Guess Who)')

Two little girls are both diagnosed on the same day with a condition called 'glue ear'. After being informed that there's a long waiting list for treatment on the NHS, one mother pays to go private and her child is soon well. But Jennifer's mother can't afford this, so we watch as the little girl continues to suffer and becomes withdrawn and aggressive at school. Finally, we see her sitting crying alone in a toilet.

NEIL KINNOCK:

I want every child in Britain to have the best. But thirteen years of the Conservatives have left us with a divided Britain, a two-tier Britain where opportunity and care increasingly depend on what you can afford to pay. If the Conservatives win they'll continue to privatise the National Health Service and make it more like the American system I don't want that and I know that you don't want it either. What we do want is a high quality National Health Service free at time of need, not one that's weakened by underfunding and opt-outs. The Labour government will modernise the National Health Service and we'll start immediately with an investment programme that means an extra billion pounds. It's part of building a Britain that works for all our children. On April the ninth the choice is between recession and recovery, between privatisation and modernisation. It's a choice between fear and hope. It's time for a change. It's time for Labour.

30th March 1992

VOICE (FEMALE):

On Monday March the sixteenth John Smith, Labour's Chancellor of the Exchequer presented his budget to the nation, and to the nation's media a budget for economic recovery.

JOHN SMITH:

We're starting to speak [inaudible] for the ordinary tax payer, the average family.

VOICE (MALE):

On Wednesday March the eighteenth Neil Kinnock launched Labour's manifesto - its emphasis on getting Britain working again.

KINNOCK: [inaudible] that they experienced in the face of wartime.

VOICE (MALE 2):

At its heart a programme of urgent measures to get Britain out of recession and build economic recovery. A programme of investment in Britain's future.

VOICE (F):

On Monday the twenty third of March Neil Kinnock and Gordon Brown in Birmingham launched Labour's manufacturing manifesto.

GORDON BROWN:

British er manufacturing not only needs low interest rates low inflation and exchange rate stability ...

VOICE (M):

A programme for industrial revival - a revival now all the more desperately needed as business confidence falls, investment declines and unemployment rises.

BROWN:

And we have seen the biggest loss in manufacturing employment of any country in the European community.

VOICE (SCOTTISH MALE):

Fife. For centuries a great coal producing area. In Scotland as a whole since 1979 unemployment has risen by over ninety thousand.

VOICE (LIVERPOOL MALE):

Merseyside. Since March 1990 over fourteen thousand more have joined the unemployed - now fourteen and a half percent of the workforce. The small businesses that survive are struggling.

VOICE (F):

The Midlands.

VOICE (BIRMINGHAM MALE):

Two thousand one hundred and ninety business failures in the West Midlands in the last year alone. Every vacancy now has thirty three people chasing it.

VOICE (F):

In the last year one hundred and seventy thousand jobs were lost in the West Midlands - forty percent of them in engineering

VOICE (BIRMINGHAM MALE):

Here British Leyland once made trucks.

VOICE (F):

Medium sized businesses demoralised.

VOICE ( SCOTTISH MALE):

Small businesses: over fifty thousand have gone under in the last twelve months.

VOICE (F):

London: the once prosperous south-east.

VOICE (M SCOTTISH):

In greater London in the last two years over eleven thousand firms collapsed and unemployment rose by over two hundred thousand.

KINNOCK:

Britain is suffering the longest recession for sixty years. But there is a way out of it. We can and we must take effective action to get the economy working again. At the heart of our manifesto is our strategy for national economic recovery. That programme will combat unemployment and recession straight away and in the very act of doing that we'll be building firm foundations for a British economy that stays strong and successful. We've got the policies to give Britain a fresh start and we've got the people to make those policies work.

JOHN SMITH:

The budget we presented to the British people is first of all a budget for economic recovery. The key to economic recovery is investment. Labour will act immediately with a one billion pound economic recovery programme of investment in housing and transport, jobs and skills. We'll offer new tax incentives to help firms invest in manufacturing industry. Our economic recovery programme will get Britain out of recession this year. But it will do more. The investment we make today will also create growth and jobs next year and in the years that follow. A strong economy needs strong industries. What we need are goods made in Britain, not recessions made in Downing Street. Gordon Brown is Labour's Secretary of State for trade and industry responsible for building a new partnership with business and industry.

GORDON BROWN:

Our budget for recovery will start with a new investment programme for British industry. Manufacturers want to invest. We'll help them to do it. Far too many products from magnetic resonance imaging to the most modern computers are invented in Britain but are now being made abroad. Under Labour British science will have the best incentives in Europe and with our new technology trusts we'll link British businesses with the best brains in our universities. I want Britain to be the industrial leader of the new Europe and I want Made in Britain to be the guarantee of quality right across the world. Enterprising people in Britain should no longer be held back by an unenterprising government. Competitors back their industries. Labour will back British industry so that Made in Britain once again becomes the basis of economic success.

SMITH:

By investing in education and training we will create the modern skills that business needs to succeed in the future. Tony Blair is Labour's Secretary of State for Employment. He will be responsible for Labour's national training strategy.

TONY BLAIR:

Labour's budget for recovery makes higher standards for education and training a top priority. Labour will create a three hundred million pounds skills fund to improve the skills of our workforce. Labour will cut class sizes and make sure that every child has enough books and a properly qualified teacher. We'll give unemployed people the chance either to retrain or to combine work in the community with quality training and job search. We are determined to make Britain the best educated and best trained nation in Europe.

SMITH:

Our budget is good for industry, good for jobs, good for the economy. It's a budget for economic recovery. Margaret Beckett is Labour's Chief Secretary to the Treasury

MARGARET BECKETT:

Labour will invest at least an extra billion pounds in the health service over the next two years. We'll invest at least an extra six hundred million on schools. Labour will help working mothers by giving tax relief on employer assisted child-care and increasing nursery places for three and four year old children. We will raise child benefits by one hundred and twenty seven pounds a year for a family with two children. We'll increase pensions by an extra eight pounds a week for a couple, five pounds a week for a single person, and we'll abolish the poll tax the tax on families. Eight out of ten families will be better off with our budget and everybody earning up to twenty two thousand pounds a year each will pay less tax.

SMITH:

But how are we going to pay for our programme? We'll start with fair taxes by raising personal tax allowances. We'll take seven hundred and forty thousand people out of tax altogether and we'll cut taxes for everyone earning up to twenty two thousand pounds per year, but we believe the ceiling on national insurance contributions is unfair and should be ended. We will also introduce a new tax rate of fifty percent on earnings above forty thousand pounds that will help pay for a better health service and improving our schools as well as increased child benefit and higher pensions. Unlike the Conservatives we won't borrow to pay for tax cuts, we'll borrow to build. Investment in skills and homes, transport and industry, will all pay off by creating new wealth in the future. Our proposals will make eight out of ten families better off. One out of ten families will stay the same and only one in ten will be asked to pay more. I think that's fair. These proposals have three objectives: to make you and your family better off, to invest in modernising our vital public services like transport health and education, and to get Britain out of recession this year.

KINNOCK:

Britain has great strengths. We've some of the best scientists and designers, some of the most successful companies and most committed workforces in the whole world. Now we need a government which builds on those strengths a government that backs British enterprise in the way that governments in our competitor countries back their producers. We must invest in education and training in health care and housing. We've got to invest in industry and innovation to get Britain out of recession. It's time to get Britain working again. It's time for change. It's time for Labour.

2nd April 1992

OLD WOMAN:

I voted Margaret Thatcher in. I thought that being a woman that she'd know how to run a country, but it's just gone from bad to worse in my estimation and I just think it's time for a change.

MAN:

I think I've had doubts for a number of years erm about the Tories, but I think it all culminated erm last year in the sense that erm one particular highlight was last year's Labour party conference when I actually said to my wife that the time had come when I actually agreed with everything that the front bench of the Labour party were saying from the platform at conference, and I think that that was almost a blinding flash.

JOHN SMITH:

It's time to get Britain out of recession and start building a strong economy. Two and a half weeks ago I presented Labour's budget to the British people. At its heart is an immediate one billion pound programme for economic recovery. Investment in housing and transport, jobs and skills will get Britain out of recession this year but the investment we make today will also create prosperity that lasts.

MAN:

I just feel that there is a need for some change I just feel that what the Tories have done so far has gone so desperately wrong that it does need to be sorted and I think and I hope that the Labour party will help me.

GORDON BROWN:

It's time to give industry real incentives to invest and that's exactly what our budget for recovery will do. I want Britain to be the industrial leader of the new Europe - top of the league for technology training and industrial success. That means we need a government working with industry just as our competitors do to build the skills, upgrade our technologies and ensure that goods invented in Britain are manufactured here too, so that throughout the nineties and beyond Made in Britain is the guarantee of quality and standards right across the world.

TONY BLAIR:

It's time to give our young people the qualifications they need and through our new three hundred million pounds skills fund enable adults to update and upgrade their skills throughout their working lives. It's time to give the unemployed the chance to retrain or work in their local communities - a workforce of quality encouraging the talents of each for the good of all: that's how a modern economy succeeds where you, your children, everyone can develop their potential to the full.

MAN:

Well the lack of spending's chronic.  The I mean the school itself is brilliant and er you couldn't ask for better teachers or nursery staff but it's just the resources they have to work with. The parents are constantly raising money, and for essentials not for luxuries. Er last year the parent body paid for new carpets throughout the school which was over a thousand pounds worth, er they've supplied computers for all the classrooms, they do a lot of book sponsoring, er just today there've been a cake stall raising funds for the school - it's all for buying essential equipment.

WOMAN:

In fact I tend to sort of see the Tories having a sort of jumble sale mentality towards education, em feeling that oh well whatever money we haven't got for it the parents can raise themselves by having a few jumble sales.

JACK STRAW:

It's time to invest in all our children. We will invest an extra six hundred million pounds in our schools over the next two years and raise educational standards. We shall create another twenty five thousand nursery education places for three and four year olds. We'll tackle the shortage of school books by guaranteeing ten pounds for new books for every school child and we'll cut class sizes so that children get the personal attention they need.

OLD WOMAN:

After what Lamont said that unemployment is good for the country, well it's not good for the people, it needs a caring government, a Labour government.

BRYAN GOULD:

We will get rid of the poll tax. We will introduce fair rates related to people's ability to pay. The Conservatives council tax will in fact be a property poll tax. Compared with the council tax our fair rates scheme will save the average family one hundred and fourteen pounds.

WOMAN:

I don't think the Conservative government care erm about the lower paid or the people who are struggling, I don't. I think they just say tough hard luck

LABOUR WOMAN:

It's time to make sure that women and men can look after their children and earn a good living too. We'll help working mothers by creating fifty thousand new child-minding and out of school care places. We'll give tax relief on employer assistance with child-care. We'll give every three and four year old a right to nursery education and we'll help to expand the opportunity for part time work by making sure that every employee has the same legal protection whatever hours they work.

MARGARET BECKETT:

It's time to give Britain's families the support they get in other European countries. Labour will increase child benefit by one hundred and twenty seven pounds a year. For a family with two children we will raise pensions by an extra eight pounds a week for a couple, five pounds for a single person with the full increase going to everybody. By introducing fair taxes and raising benefits we will make eight out of ten families better off.

WOMAN:

When it comes to health you can't mess with people's health.  That should be, that is something which should be natural like going to drink a glass of water.  You should be able to go to the hospital and get treated and not have to wait hours and hours to be seen to - that should be something that should come first.

DOCTOR:

I have a deep commitment to the national health service and I feel that unfortunately the people up there haven't got that same commitment, and that is the underlying problem for me that year on year there's been underfunding in my part of the NHS year after year.

GP:

as a GP I'm concerned about the move towards a market system which I don't think has any part to play in the provision of a health service.  A a market system means increased competition and increased competition almost always leads to reduction in costs, cutting corners, and I feel ultimately er in the health service will lead to cutting corners to the extent that patients' er lives and their health in general will be put at risk.

DOCTOR:

Er it's going to put barriers between patients. Erm I can image that a patient might come in and and you say well I don't really want to refer you to this operation and the patient's going to say is that your accountant that's speaking or is that you as a doctor that's speaking.

DOCTOR:

And patients don't seem to matter any more.  If anything all the er managers these days try to do is they're forced into a position where they have to shut people up who talk about patients.

HARRIET HARMAN:

It's time for a health policy to keep people healthy as well as a National Health Service to treat people when they're ill. We'll strengthen screening by bringing back free eye tests and we'll make sure that food is properly labelled and insist on high standards for school meals and we'll cut the death toll from cancer by banning tobacco advertising and helping people to stop smoking.

ROBIN COOK:

Labour created the NHS we're proud of the way it has served Britain, that's why we won't let it be privatised we'll bring back the hospitals that have opted out. We'll raise standards through a new quality commission and we'll start to tackle underfunding with an extra thousand million pounds over our first two years, that way we can recruit more nurses and keep open more beds for patients. It's time for the strong NHS we all need - let's make this election a referendum on the National Health Service.

MAN:

It's a different Labour party to the one thirteen years ago.  It's a different country, it's a different economy, and we have Europe to look forward to and I feel that the government that we have now is failing us and it is time for a change.

KINNOCK:

On April the ninth there's a choice to be made between fear and hope. Instead of recession and unemployment we'll build a firm future of recovery and economic strength. Instead of the constant experiments and underfunding in education we'll increase investment and raise standards in schools. Instead of a privatised health service we'll ensure that everyone has the security of a high quality National Health Service free at time of need. It's time for all of us to work together to transform Britain from the country it's become to the successful country we know it can be. It's time to get Britain working again. It's time for change. It's time for Labour.

6th April 1992

JOHN MORTIMER:

When I think really back along my political life it started in 1945 with the big Labour landslide after the war and the first Atlee government which was undoubtedly the best of this century, and it was dedicated to great ideals - er the welfare state, more social equality, the abandonment of great differences between rich and poor, better education for everybody, better housing for everybody, and those ideals were in a way kept going by governments of both parties until the arrival of Mrs Thatcher, and then suddenly there was a great change - we were all told that those ideas were hopeless, ridiculous, they were sneered at and we're now left with a totally divided society.

PAUL GAMBACCINI:

Government is meant to serve the people, people aren't meant to serve the government.  The Tories have turned it around, they've made us the servants of government and that's wrong.

AMBULANCE DRIVER(M):

Under-funding, under-staffing, under-resourcing, you know we're all underestimated and we're all under stress - it's as simple as that.

CHILD MINDER (F):

All I can see is cuts, and it's a fight all the time to get good child provision.

RICHARD ATTENBOROUGH:

I am angry about the fact that government plays lip-service pays lip-service to concerns about those who are incapable by virtue of circumstance of looking after themselves.

DAVID YIPP:

I believe in a health service which is free at the point of access.  The health service has saved my life three times and I want it to be there to save other people's lives.

MIDWIFE:

There's eighteen thousand more administrators in the last three years but not extra midwives or nurses.

BUILDER (M):

Not even the Communist party could er [inaudible] the country the way the Tory has.

FORMER CAMBRIDGE VC (M):

They have mismanaged the economy and engineered what is already the worst recession in living memory.

THEATRE DIRECTOR (F):

People must be able to go to the dentist, they must be able to get their eyes fixed ,you know, a healthy nation is a prosperous nation.

ECONOMICS PROFESSOR(M):

I think the main problem about the last five years has been the truly appalling economic mismanagement.

PENSIONER(M):

Two of my girls were made redundant through no fault of the factory but through the recession in this country today.

DAVID PUTTNAM:

I'm desperately keen that my children and now my grandchildren grow up in a society which isn't riddled by class.

PAEDIATRICIAN (F):

When I was working with deprived children in the east end of London I found that fifty percent of their parents were out of work.

KINNOCK SPEECH:

What's at issue in this election is not the soap boxes that the Prime Minister stands on - it's the cardboard boxes that people have to live in that's at issue.

JULIET STEVENSON:

I go home at night from this theatre and I see doorways littered with people, some young, some old, many mentally unstable.

HELENA KENNEDY:

I want to see er a bill of rights, I want to see erm a change in the way in which judges are appointed, I want to see women participating much more in the law, and I'd like to see the law belonging to the people.

COLIN TARRANT:

What kind of government is it that can send these children to inadequate schools with woefully demoralised staff?

STEPHEN FRY:

The heart needs to be put back in Britain and I think only Labour can do it.  Only Labour has the energy and commitment, the excitement to generate a new kind of Britain.

CARMEN CALLIL:

I really think it's time that the fifty eight percent of people who didn't vote Tory in the last election had their turn and their say in how the country's run.

KINNOCK SPEECH:

I say this that the government that will react to children's pain in the way that they did is unfit to govern.

INDUSTRIALIST:

They're young, they're dynamic, they're imaginative, they want to get the country moving again.

STEVE CRAM:

Sport is something which is very important to me.  The reason why I vote Labour is that I want to see facilities that I enjoyed as a youngster maintained.

SOLICITOR (F):

Women will flourish in a system of fairness and equality - that has been conspicuously lacking under the Tory party for the last thirteen years.

PENSIONERS (M AND F):

I think the most important thing that Labour are talking about is investment in industry for training.

TEACHER (M):

I'm going to vote Labour because I want the sort of country that Labour stands for, I want to see the economy back on its feet and going.

BUSINESS WOMAN:

From the Labour government I most hope that working class women will be taken seriously for the first time.

B.R. TRAINING MANAGER (M):

As a parent and also as a school governor I'm concerned about the future of our education service.

WARDEN OF WADHAM COLLEGE, OXFORD (M):

Our kids, our children are going to get a better chance - all of them from all classes - and I care a lot about that.

UNIVERSITY OF WALES PROFESSOR (M):

Never in thirty five years of university teaching have I experienced such a degree of demoralisation among my colleagues.

SOFTWARE ENGINEER (F):

I'll be having my baby in four months and the future of that child is very important particularly in education, er Labour guarantee a nursery place and that's very important to me.

STEPHEN HAWKING:

Education and science are vital to the future of our country that is why I'm voting Labour.

SIR DENNIS FOREMAN:

First of all the leader our leader Neil has got vigour, imagination and energy.

BEN ELTON:

I was reading only recently how the American correspondents having read the British press on the subject of Neil Kinnock had been astonished to meet him, to follow him around with the campaign, to find a person of dignity, of courage, of good humour, passion and commitment.

COMPANY DIRECTOR (F):

He's got spirit and he's got character and he's got vision and it's something that his opposite number does not appear to have.

ANTHONY SHER:

He's somehow held on to his identity despite the pressures of politics, and what you get is a very real person with heartfelt passion and conviction and strength.

KINNOCK SPEECH:

We will fight recession. We will fight unemployment. We will use the resources properly. We will give priority to the old and the poor and the children and the health care and the education system. That's what democratic government should be about.

WELSH MAN (EX MP?):

Neil is primarily first and foremost a family man, and if there is one thing which Britain needs today it's someone who can unite the people of this country.  As a politician myself I know how cruel my opponents have been and how cruel our opponents are today and Neil Kinnock has conducted this election in my view in an incomparable way with dignity.

KINNOCK SPEECH:

Now is the time for our country to start pulling together, pulling together for the sake of the pensioners, pulling together to give the youngsters a chance, pulling together against the waste and the cost of unemployment. Now is the time to make our country safer, cleaner, more secure. Now is the time to make our country stronger and more successful. Now is the time for Britain to pull together. Now is the time for change. Now is the time for Labour

BARRISTER (M):

People who are rich who are well off can look after themselves, it is the young or the old and the ill and the homeless that the society has to look the government has to look for.

ALAN RICKMAN:

I just think it's time that we decided what kind of society, not that just we want to live in but what kind of society we want to hand on to our children, because their inheritance at the moment is a dreadful one.

WARD SISTER:

I will vote Labour because of its commitment to the health service, because of its commitment to people, to the ordinary man and woman in the street.

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Last Modified: 22 Oct 12
© Richard Kimber