Theresa May is facing a big battle to get her Brexit deal through parliament on 11 December amid cross-party hostility. What’s Labour’s alternative, and how does the party propose to reunite a divided nation? Owen Jones speaks to the shadow Brexit secretary, Keir Starmer, in the heart of his Camden constituency in north London
They would never admit it, but in their actions the Tories have conceded that migrants are a source of great worth and humanity
Successive governments have long scapegoated immigrants for social ills brought about by the powerful, but none have made it so core to their mission as this one.
In concert with a mendacious, bigoted rightwing press, immigrants have been blamed for stagnating wages caused by austerity and weakened unions, a housing crisis caused by a failure to build, a lack of secure jobs caused by rapid deindustrialisation, and strains on public services caused by ideologically driven cuts. And yet, without migrants, those services would collapse within hours. This is a fact admitted by this migrant-baiting government, but sadly in deed rather than in word. It has just been revealed that the government will relax immigration rules to allow more non-EU doctors to come to Britain because of shortages of medics – shortages that the Tories are themselves responsible for.
I have a confession to make: I’m not sure I could trust myself if I actually ran into David Cameron. Ever since the Brexit referendum, I have been trying to avoid any occasions where I think we might have to meet.
It’s possible the Bank of England’s figures are wrong, which must be why Brexit enthusiasts haven’t made the mistake of producing their own documents, or research, or numbers
Read in the Independent
From 9am on Boxing Day until the end of January, returns queues are littered with disappointed giftees
Read in the Standard
Throughout Japanese history, the nation has maintained a sense of its exceptionalism. Even modest low-skilled immigration, it worries, may unbalance the unspoken rules and the extreme order of society
Read in the Independent
Writer, campaigner and passionate critic of austerity who found fame late in life with his bestselling book Harry’s Last Stand
If proof were ever needed that it is never too late to make a major impact, Harry Leslie Smith, who has died aged 95, surely offers it. He was 91 when his bestselling memoir-cum-polemic in defence of the welfare state, Harry’s Last Stand (2014), was published, winning him a mass following in Britain’s ascendant left and beyond.
Following the book’s publication, he was invited to address that year’s Labour party conference before a speech by the then shadow health secretary, Andy Burnham. His passionate denunciation of benefits cuts and austerity – including the line “Mr Cameron, Keep your mitts off my NHS!” – reduced delegates to tears and made headline news.
The next chapter in this crisis will be ugly as Tommy Robinson casts himself as the leader of ‘betrayed’ leave voters
Britain in 2018 has the feel of a Netflix drama approaching its season finale. It’s the classic “how on earth does anyone get out of this one?” kind of cliffhanger, with all of the key protagonists confronted by their nemesis. Despite the unpredictability inherent in one of Britain’s most severe peacetime political crises, there is one plotline guaranteed to feature when you next tune in. In every possible scenario the ascendant far right stands to profit.
If MPs reject the deal, there are seven possible paths the country could go down next.
France has been gripped by protests sparked by anger over fuel tax rises, which have mushroomed into demonstrations against the ruling class. The Guardian’s Angelique Chrisafis has been covering what were supposed to be peaceful protests. Plus: Owen Jones argues that if a ‘Brexit betrayal’ narrative takes hold, Britain’s far right is poised to capitalise
When French voters elected Emmanuel Macron in May 2017, there was hope that a populist trend in Europe had been bucked and a youthful reformist president became a shining example of what was still possible in centrist politics.
But things have soured. Now France has been gripped by protests sparked by anger over fuel tax rises, which have mushroomed into demonstrations against the ruling class. The Guardian’s Paris correspondent, Angelique Chrisafis, has been following the Macron presidency and watching as his approval ratings have plummeted.
She may have fortitude in the face of misfortune, and it is easy to feel sympathy for her in comparison to the Brexiters in the Conservative party. But to a large extent she has brought that all upon herself, from the moment she became Prime Minister. Here are some of her bigger mistakes.