John Rentoul

John Rentoul is chief political commentator for The Independent on Sunday, and visiting professor at King's College, London, and at Queen Mary University of London. 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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The Independent around the web

Daily catch-up: old London, the mansion tax and a Lib Dem of principle

All the information on the internet boiled down to six essential nuggets

Prime Minister’s Questions: Ed Miliband versus Myleene Klass

Our political columnist was in the press gallery for another interesting, or possibly dull, exchange

Daily catch-up: NHS markets, phone hacking and doing the Strand

Plus the patent pending (in the sense that it hasn’t been applied for) Rentoul daily opinion poll tracker

Daily catch-up: vegetarianism, opinion polls and more genuine shop names

Another selection of the best upon which our political columnist stumbled on the internet last night

Daily catch-up: a murmuration; gay lib tactics; and Latin animal names

All you need to know about fauna, politics, commuting and trousers

Albunea groeningi: A pale yellow sand crab named after the Simpsons creator Matt Groening

Latin animal names: The top ten

I have not fully recovered from the discovery that the proper Latin name of the western lowland gorilla is 'Gorilla gorilla gorilla'. Here are 10 more, inspired by 'The Naming of the Shrew: A Curious History of Latin Names' by John Wright, published this month by Bloomsbury.

Last month, the Polling Observatory reported that Labour support has fallen by an average of three percentage points while the Conservatives have held steady

The Green Party is a growing threat to Labour — could its surge be the next big political story?

The party does not even pretend that it is trying to take votes from the two main parties
Michael Cashman, Baron Cashman CBE, former actor and Labour Politician pictured at his home in Limehouse in London, U.K., on Thursday, Nov. 6, 2014

Michael Cashman: The rainbow warrior

Stardom, power, heartbreak, and now crowned Britain's most influential LGBT figure... but the Labour peer says there's so much still to do

Daily catch-up: fictional buildings, Miliband’s fightback from Labour’s slump

Favourite things, including fantasy, zapping rain drops with lasers and polling analysis

Ed Miliband speech: 7 quotes that show how he'll go down fighting

Speech has been seen as a make-or-break moment in which he tries to win over an increasingly jittery Labour Party – as well as convince voters he can be the next PM

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Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game