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Considering Boris Johnson's past transport ideas, we should all be very worried about the Channel bridge1h 5m Considering Boris Johnson's past transport ideas, we should all be very worried about the Channel bridge
The Independent
The Boris Bridge is brought to you by the man who ingeniously thought up not just the Garden Bridge, but also the windowless Routemaster, the Thames Estuary Airport and the cable car to nowhere
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Mea Culpa: clearing the clutter of needless punctuation 1h 59m Mea Culpa: clearing the clutter of needless punctuation
The Independent
An outbreak of unnecessary hyphens and quotation marks – and other style glitches in this week's Independent
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My life and career were ruined when I was called out for sexual harassment. I'm glad – I deserved it2h My life and career were ruined when I was called out for sexual harassment. I'm glad – I deserved it
The Independent
I can't make right what I've done, and I don't have the right to ask anything of women, but what I can do is make an urgent plea to men
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2h Who’s afraid of the big bad escaped wolf? Not me | Patrick Barkham
The Guardian
The panic about Torak the Berkshire escapee shows that facts cannot compete with our hoary old horror stories“Rottweiler slipped his lead near school,” was the first hysterical headline. “Rottweiler on the loose after ESCAPING from owner near Middleton family home,” was another, as Rover, a much-loved 12-year-old pet, roamed a few miles from a village with distant royal connections. “Armed police were scrambled to track down the beast and a primary school was placed on lockdown,”
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3h The curious incident of my elderly mother stuck in a lift
The Independent
She admitted to me that for a few seconds she froze. 'Then I got a grip" she said, 'and dialled the hairdressers'
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3h Europe must wake up to the drastic consequences of a hard Brexit | Joris Luyendijk
The Guardian
The Netherlands knows what it will lose if the UK crashes out. It is less than the price of giving Britain a sweet dealBecause it is such a riveting clown show with new crazy episodes almost every day, Europeans can be forgiven for ignoring the fact that Brexit is going to hurt them too. But as the date of Britain’s departure comes closer and Theresa May’s government continues its kamikaze policy of demanding the politically unthinkable from the EU, it is time for Europeans to wake and begin preparing for the worst. On Thursday the Dutch government published a report drawn up by the consultancy firm KPMG analysing the
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Let's show Macron we mean business and lend France the Crown Jewels in return for the Bayeux Tapestry4h Let's show Macron we mean business and lend France the Crown Jewels in return for the Bayeux Tapestry
The Independent
Just to be picky, may I point out right now that it's not actually a tapestry, it's a piece of embroidery, because its not woven, it's sewn onto already existing cloth
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Forget Britain’s nuclear deterrent – here’s what Russia is really afraid of | Mark Galeotti4h Forget Britain’s nuclear deterrent – here’s what Russia is really afraid of | Mark Galeotti
The Guardian
Russia is being weaponised to justify big-ticket buys for the UK military, yet there’s little talk of what Moscow thinks mattersBritish defence spending and capabilities are in the middle of a bitter review in which the potential threat from Russia is frequently invoked, whether that means cutting ocean-bottom
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5h Refugees can achieve so much if they’re not caged in isolated camps | David Patrikarakos
The Guardian
Rooms were lying empty at the City Plaza hotel in Athens. Now it’s an autonomous hive where refugees are empowered In May 2016, after the EU-Turkey agreement designed to close off mass immigration to Europe, a group of 120 migrants accompanied by volunteers stormed the well-known City Plaza hotel in Athens. The hotel was vacant, its owners having gone bankrupt. Hundreds of rooms were lying empty while refugees suffered in camps far from the city. The refugees set up shop there, and – despite government threats to cut off the water and electricity –
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This is not Corbynite coup, it’s a mandate for his radical agenda | Gary Younge8h Updated This is not Corbynite coup, it’s a mandate for his radical agenda | Gary Younge
The Guardian
He used to be a leader in name only, but now the Labour party is evolving in ways that make meaningful change possible “Kings were put to death long before 21 January 1793,”
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Why are Tories like Ben Bradley so hung up on poor people having babies? | Gaby Hinsliff19h Why are Tories like Ben Bradley so hung up on poor people having babies? | Gaby Hinsliff
The Guardian
Paranoia of an overly fertile underclass seems to be a particular strain of Conservative horribleness that refuses to dieIf you’re too poor to have children, get a vasectomy. Better that than leave the nation
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20h The Guardian view on the private finance initiative: replace this failed model | Editorial
The Guardian
Forty years of increasingly dogmatic approaches to the financing of public services have led to the collapse of Carillion and a damning National Audit Office reportLong ago, in a political galaxy far away, privatisation and outsourcing in public services were not always dogmas but instead acts that could involve a degree of pragmatism and some balancing of interests. After the postwar Attlee government and before Margaret Thatcher’s long reign in British politics, decisions about the relationship between the public and private sectors were often practical compromises, not ideological fixations. Government’s role was always and necessarily central, but it could be flexible about forms of ownership and systems of regulation and governance. At first, even Mrs Thatcher only argued that it was reasonable for private companies to compete to provide public services. Since the Thatcher era, habits, assumptions and arguments have relentlessly ossified. Part of this is political – the post-Thatcher generation of politicians faced publics that could prefer private to public (in housing, notably), lower taxes to higher ones, and disliked overmighty trade unions. Part of it is economic – the decline of the industrially based, sometimes publicly owned, economy with strong collective bargaining and the growth, in its place, of a globalised and financially led service sector, often offshore, driven by shareholder value and characterised by hyper-rewards for management and low pay and insecurity for many employees. The upshot, nearly 40 years on, is that governments have behaved as though they are historically powerless to control the terms on which public goods are provided. In fact, only government is powerful enough to set those terms.
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20h Don’t fixate on a second Brexit vote. Focus instead on trade | Simon Jenkins
The Guardian
Of course it’s possible to change our minds in a democracy. But we have to be realistic about what can and can’t be achievedThey wander Westminster with staring eyes. “Repent,” they cry, “or be doomed. We are all doomed.” They are the second-referendum adventists, the priests of the afterthought, the prophets of the second coming. They meet with decrepit peers in cobwebbed attics. They mix potions and spells, and stick pins in plasticine Theresa Mays. They are mad. As mad as the flat-earth leavers. Of course Britain could change its mind on Brexit by next March. May could evaporate. The Tory party could vanish in a cloud of waffle. Jeremy Corbyn could descend from the clouds on a golden swing, cooing gently and speaking French.
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Emmanuel Macron's Calais gesture reminds the British that they can reverse Brexit20h Emmanuel Macron's Calais gesture reminds the British that they can reverse Brexit
The Independent
It may seem a futile gesture today, but it is part of building up soft pressure on the British to see some sense before they inflict irrevocable harm on their own economy and that of our closest trading partners, such as France
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20h Tomayto or tomahto? That is the question I wrestle with | Emma Brockes
The Guardian
Working on UK and US versions of my book made me realise how much living in New York has affected my pronunciationI have lived in the US for 10 years, and although I take the elevator down to the lobby from my apartment, when I go outside I walk on the pavement. My children wear diapers but, by and large, I fill the tank with petrol, not gas, and throw out the rubbish not the trash. I wish I still ate sweets, but I don’t; “sweets” to my ears sound childish and wilfully obscure and, while I may cringe when I say it, there’s no question that if I ask someone to pass me the Skittles,
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21h I have been a surrogate four times – and this is what it's really like
The Independent
With every contraction I could see the pain on their faces – the guilt that I was going through all of this just for them. But what was a few hours of pain for a lifetime of joy that a child could bring?
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It's a sign of the Conservatives' intelligence that they took a £50,000 donation from a hedge fund betting on Carillion's bankruptcy21h It's a sign of the Conservatives' intelligence that they took a £50,000 donation from a hedge fund betting on Carillion's bankruptcy
The Independent
Some people have accused the board at Carillion of lacking foresight, but this seems unfair, because last year the board changed their policy to protect executive bonuses so they would still be paid in the event of the company going bankrupt. And that seems packed full of foresight
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There's no one better than Macron when it comes to smooth diplomacy – but even he can't predict our post-Brexit relationship with France22h There's no one better than Macron when it comes to smooth diplomacy – but even he can't predict our post-Brexit relationship with France
The Independent
If there is one truism more misleading than the idea that France and the UK could not be more different, it is that, deep down and in power terms, we are essentially the same
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Donald Trump has given Paul Krugman a 'Fake News Award' – but did the economist really get it so wrong?24h Donald Trump has given Paul Krugman a 'Fake News Award' – but did the economist really get it so wrong?
The Independent
Krugman's prediction was just that: a prediction. If it was reported, then it should have been reported with the usual caveats attached to all economic forecasts, predictions and received bits of wisdom
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PFI deals are bleeding the NHS dry – some hospitals can't even afford to buy sutures to stitch up wounds 26h PFI deals are bleeding the NHS dry – some hospitals can't even afford to buy sutures to stitch up wounds
The Independent
The use of Private Finance Initiatives was driven by a mixture of questionable ideology (private always does things better), dodgy accounting (it takes debt off the state's book although the state still has to repay it) and dodgy accountants
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26h I was an outsourced Carillion hospital worker. Here’s what I learned | Polly Toynbee
The Guardian
It’s low-paid workers who pay the price of shifting state debt off the Treasury’s books. I know: I’ve seen the process at workA while ago I worked for Carillion as a hospital porter. Or at least I worked for an agency that provided labour for Carillion – as these outsourcers always themselves outsource, to cut costs further. When I was researching my book
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The next Kurdish war is on the horizon – Turkey and Syria will never allow it to create a mini-state 27h The next Kurdish war is on the horizon – Turkey and Syria will never allow it to create a mini-state
The Independent
Syria cannot countenance Kurdish presence on its territory and Turkey cannot tolerate a Kurdish enclave along its southern border, however secular, liberal and socialist it claims (not without reason) to be
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27h This is why Keira Knightley is right about rape scenes in Hollywood
The Independent
How often have the real-life victims of sexual assault had scripts delivered to them with scenes that mirror their own experiences?
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A plea for children like my brother-in-law, who died on Britain’s doorstep | Samer Naveed28h A plea for children like my brother-in-law, who died on Britain’s doorstep | Samer Naveed
The Guardian
Refugee Masud died in a lorry on the way to join us in London. May and Macron can prevent deaths such as hisToday Theresa May and Emmanuel Macron
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28h Donald Trump's Fake News Awards neatly encapsulate every reason why he's not fit to be leader of the free world
The Independent
CNN bagged an award for editing a video 'to make it appear President Trump defiantly overfed fish' on his visit to Japan. And it got pettier from there
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29h The Conservatives’ problem with young members started way before Ben Bradley | Katy Balls
The Guardian
The new Tory vice-chair for youth made toxic remarks about the unemployed. No wonder the party’s drive to attract young voters has been faltering for years When Ben Bradley was appointed as the Tory vice-chair for youth in
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Now Norway’s decriminalised drugs, it’s high time the UK chose legalisation | Daniel Pryor29h Now Norway’s decriminalised drugs, it’s high time the UK chose legalisation | Daniel Pryor
The Guardian
The government must realise it’s hopelessly out of step with sensible drug policy. Legalisation would take the market out of the hands of criminalsIn 2001
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Through humility and understanding, we can still stop Brexit | Andrew Adonis30h Through humility and understanding, we can still stop Brexit | Andrew Adonis
The Guardian
A second referendum looks increasingly likely, and a new settlement addressing Britain’s inequalities could reverse our trajectory When President Macron meets Theresa May at the Franco-British summit at Sandhurst, the elite military academy, on Thursday, the vital “take away” for him is that Brexit is not a done deal. It can, and quite possibly will, be reversed by an increasingly likely referendum on May’s Brexit terms early next year – once the Brexit terms are clear, but before Britain is due to leave on 29 March 2019. It is essential, therefore, that Macron – who believes passionately in a strong and united Europe – continues to express his heartfelt support for continued British membership of the European Union, should that ultimately be the will of the British people.
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Emmanuel Macron’s Bayeux tapestry loan is one in the eye for Brexiters | Martin Kettle33h Emmanuel Macron’s Bayeux tapestry loan is one in the eye for Brexiters | Martin Kettle
The Guardian
France’s gesture, which will allow most Britons to see the work for the first time, is every bit as political as it is generous Although the word occasionally pops up in Tintin adventures, normally in the mouth of Captain Haddock, there are obvious reasons why a columnist shouldn’t utter the antique French cry of
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Fear now rules Trump’s US. It’s what drives the president too | Tony Schwartz33h Fear now rules Trump’s US. It’s what drives the president too | Tony Schwartz
The Guardian
Trump is angrier and more self-absorbed than when I first knew him. We must not let his culture of fear stop us speaking out
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