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John Rentoul

John Rentoul is chief political commentator for The Independent on Sunday, and visiting professor at Queen Mary, University of London, where he teaches contemporary history. Previously he was chief leader writer for The Independent. He has written a biography of Tony Blair, whom he admired more at the end of his time in office than he did at the beginning. Click here and 'like' to receive updates on Facebook

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Mister No, Eagle Eye

Mister No

Samuel Coates tries and fails to ask one of my Questions to Which the Answer is … well, you get the idea:
Do you ever feel like starting a more positive meme, so you’re not Mr No all the time?
To which the answer is Yes: I tried being positive about Britain’s finest peace-time prime minister of [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Wednesday, 5 January 2011 at 10:23 pm

Flaps, Dizzie, Ziggy or Buzzie, Eagle Eye

Flaps, Dizzie, Ziggy or Buzzie

The Saudi Arabians have intercepted a vulture suspected of working for Mossad. First a shark; now this. Thanks to Gabriel Milland. (Photograph of Egyptian vulture by Hakan Perek.)
Other stuff I saw on the internet today:
Iain Martin awards George Osborne a diploma in Advanced Tony Blair Studies.
Ian Birrell’s ode to optimism: “There has never been a better [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Tuesday, 4 January 2011 at 9:42 pm

The Tories: a party in terminal decline?, Eagle Eye

The Tories: a party in terminal decline?

Number 477 of my Questions to Which the Answer is No, asked by Left Futures, which seems to be a vehicle for Jon Lansman’s ancient Bennite left in the Labour Party.
Thanks to Rob Marchant.

By | Eagle Eye | Tuesday, 4 January 2011 at 5:30 pm

Is Ed Miliband becoming the IDS of Labour?, Eagle Eye

Is Ed Miliband becoming the IDS of Labour?

The Daily Mail asks this question rather belatedly — Ipsos MORI put out that news release on Friday.
I have put it down as number 476 of my Questions to Which the Answer is No, because at least the Conservatives got rid of Iain Duncan Smith.
Several people, who shall remain nameless, have asked number 475 on the [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Tuesday, 4 January 2011 at 4:03 pm

Advice for Ed Miliband: Don’t Fall Off the Roof, Eagle Eye

Advice for Ed Miliband: Don’t Fall Off the Roof

There is more stuff on the internet today:
Alastair Campbell, on hype. “Provided he doesn’t fall from a roof, he [Ed Miliband] should get a fair hearing” for his speech in Oldham today. (Photograph of Miliband on roof: Martin Argles, Guardian.)
Paul Corrigan, the Labour former special adviser who does a better job explaining Andrew Lansley’s NHS [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Monday, 3 January 2011 at 3:50 pm

Ed Balls and Kneejerk Magnacartaism, Eagle Eye

Ed Balls and Kneejerk Magnacartaism

Ed Balls, on the detention of nine terrorist suspects, talking sense in the midst of a kneejerk magnacartaist meltdown.
What was clear back in 2005 is there were people who were a real threat but couldn’t be charged. And what did you do? And I understand why those decisions were made. I think the jury’s still [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Monday, 3 January 2011 at 2:08 pm

Deer Fairs, Eagle Eye

Deer Fairs

Some things on the internet at which I looked today:
Christian Wolmar, on the “steep rale fare rises”,* which he seems to accept will not stop the growth in rail use, especially with petrol so expensive.
Fraser Nelson, on why Lib Dems can save their seats only by joining the Tories: “If you support Cameron’s govt, why [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 2 January 2011 at 11:36 pm

Watch this, er, space, Eagle Eye

Watch this, er, space

Grant Shapps, the housing minister (right), does not emerge well from the application of the principle that “Everything before the ‘but’ is bullshit“:
This government absolutely supports peoples’ aspiration to own a home. But we also believe that [property] should be primarily thought of as a place to be your home.
Choice timing for Shapps’s Observer interview, [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 2 January 2011 at 4:29 pm

How the Baby Boomers Stole Their Children’s Future, Eagle Eye

How the Baby Boomers Stole Their Children’s Future

I have an article in The Independent on Sunday in which I observe that David Willetts, who started the year as author of The Pinch, a polemic subtitled How the Baby Boomers Stole Their Children’s Future, ended it as universities minister, engaged in stealing our children’s future and requiring them to pay for it at 9 [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 2 January 2011 at 2:35 pm

Left hand: Make work pay; Right hand: Not, Eagle Eye

Left hand: Make work pay; Right hand: Not

Chris Grayling, Employment minister (right), said it again yesterday:
We are reforming the welfare system to ensure that work always pays.
Perhaps someone could ask him how that principle is compatible with Nick Clegg’s wizard scheme to pay tuition fees, worth up to £18,000, to students from workless households who have been on free school meals.
Update: Apologies for [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Saturday, 1 January 2011 at 4:28 pm

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