Owen Jones: This broken House of Lords doesn’t need reform. It needs scrapping | Owen Jones

A peer claimed £50,000 in allowances without speaking in a debate. This anti-democratic institution must go

Imagine this for a gig. You get paid £50,000 for doing no discernible work, occasionally get to wear some funky looking scarlet and ermine robes, prance around one of the world’s most iconic buildings, and even have subsidised meals thrown into the bargain. This is lifestyle that David Brookman, a Labour peer in the House of Lords, might recognise, according to a Guardian investigation. You, as a taxpayer, forked out the equivalent of two nurses’ salary last year in attendance and travel expenses for Baron Brookman of Ebbw Vale, who in a 12-month period didn’t participate in a single debate or submit any written questions. Still, who needs nurses?

Related: Peer who never spoke in Lords last year claims £50,000 expenses

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The sooner Labour realises that no version of Brexit can bring the country together, the better

Day by day Labour slowly changes its stance on a second referendum. At the moment seems to be: “We do support a public vote, preferably a general election but a confirmatory poll if there’s no deal, or possibly another referendum, but not necessarily on the EU as much as which is more satisfying on a hot day, a melon or a tangerine”

Read in the Independent

Owen Jones: Labour needs a reboot – and it could start with bringing back Ed Miliband | Owen Jones

Brexit has robbed the Corbyn project of its identity. Backing a referendum and shaking up the shadow cabinet would help

Labour needs a drastic reboot. The Tories may be in existential crisis, desperately flapping around in a rising tide of rightwing populism, but Labour’s hopes of securing the sizeable majority it needs to enact a transformative agenda are uncertain. The Brexit mire has robbed the Corbyn project of its core identity, a sense of insurgency; stripped away its optimistic, idealistic gloss; and suppressed the enthusiasm of Labour’s members and the voters most inspired by its 2017 manifesto. Its desperate, indeed honourable, desire for a Brexit compromise in a painfully fractured nation, to be the party that skilfully transcended the divisions bequeathed by a referendum result three years ago, was remorselessly kicked to death in polling stations last week. If the party’s position was intended to be a Rorschach inkblot in which remainers or leavers could see what they wanted to see, in the end all either saw was a splattered mess.

Related: Corbyn pledges Labour will back referendum on any Brexit deal

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Owen Jones: A second referendum is a bad option for Labour. But it may be the only one left | Owen Jones

Corbyn’s attempt to unite leave and remain was right. But a people’s vote may be the only solution to the Tories’ toxic mess

To be a Brexit pragmatist has become an increasingly dispiriting and lonely experience. The middle ground on Brexit has been systematically torched from both ends. To desire a compromise was, in the aftermath of the referendum, a position shared by a large majority. During the horror show that was the referendum campaign, the likes of Nigel Farage hyped up Norway – which is a member of the single market – as a shining example of how Britain could thrive outside the EU. Two years ago, polling suggested that a very narrow majority of remain voters believed that “now the British people have voted to leave the government has a duty to carry out their wishes and leave”. There is a historical revisionism fashionable among some which claims that Labour’s 2017 surge was down to remainers lending their votes, rather than the party’s radical prospectus; but as polling found after the election, just 8% of Labour voters named Brexit as the most important issue behind their vote.

Related: Corbynism is now in crisis: the only way forward is to oppose Brexit | Paul Mason

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