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.

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Banned List update: more imnecessary words and phrases. If you wouldn’t mind

The author of ‘The Banned List’ issues an emergency supplementary list of prohibitions

Does Clegg face problems from his own party?

Nick Clegg's paradox: the policies are fine, he's not

Demiation is a word I've invented. It means to be cut by half, the likely fate of Lib Dem MPs

The Top Ten: Invented words

Thanks to Paul Dickson for this collection. His book Authorisms: Words Wrought by Writers has just been published by Bloomsbury. To a word nerd (a word that first appeared in 1950 in Dr Seuss's If I Ran the Zoo, in which Gerald McGrew wants “a Nerkle, a Nerd, and a Seersucker too…”, for his collection) it is a delight.

The daily catch-up: heatwave update; duck tape and market socialism

A handful of gems selected from the bran tub of the internet by our political columnist

The daily catch-up: art of the unapology, a bet on UKIP and printer ink molecules

Bits and pieces of shiny interest collected from the internet by our cyber-jackdaw

The daily catch-up: knitting, why Ed wants to be PM and a colloquium of Indy-pedants

Notables and curiosities collected from the further (and nearer) shores of the world-wide web

The daily catch-up: Joe on Vlad, banks of the Jordan and Blair's radicalism

Don't waste your time googling around the internet: let our chief googler do it for you

The daily catch-up: a word from our lizard overlord, while Ed goes to Washington (not Zagreb)

Half a dozen things you may have missed over the weekend

The Top Ten: MPs with Parliament in their blood

The House of Commons Library produced a list last year that was interesting, but nit-picking pedants pointed out that it had omitted several well-known examples, including David Cameron and Ed Miliband. This year's list was more complete. It included 28 sitting Conservatives, 24 Labour and five Lib Dems.

Tony and Cherie Blair on the day he was elected

Two decades on, what is Tony Blair's legacy worth?

Perhaps now would be a good time to remind young people about his record
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Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album