Simon Carr

The Independent's parliamentary sketch writer and columnist since 2000, Simon Carr was described by Tony Blair as "the most vicious sketch writer working in Britain today". "Poison," said Charles Clarke. In the 1980s he helped launch The Independent, and was a speech writer for the prime minister of New Zealand from 1992 to 1994. His working principle is "Indignation keeps us young."

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The Sketch: Ed Miliband looks like a leader, then the face gives him away

At one point of confusion, Miliband asked for a moment to 're-figure my memory on this'

Simon Carr: Two slick operators, and no hint of wrongdoing

Sketch: Brown told us how he had set about cleaning up the moral squalor he'd inherited

The Sketch: No muttering, more a bawling roar, as backbenchers make themselves heard

A muttering idiot? "The muttering idiot opposite!" The House went up. And kept going up for what might have been a minute. A minute is a long time in the House of Commons. The Speaker was left standing, powerless to control the new Tories' angry euphoria.

The Sketch: String 'em up, they said! (But their hands were tied)

They've been lied to systematically for five years, treated with contempt by News International, the police and prosecutors. So the MPs on the Culture Select Committee published a report detailing the most egregious examples and yesterday managed to get an emergency motion on the floor of the Commons. For what end? To have the villains flogged? Charged? Called to the Bar of the House?

Simon Carr: It was all going bonkers as they bayed for blood

Sketch: The Beecroft Report recommends that bosses use hardworking employees for footstools, pin cushions and body parts. Or something

The Sketch: What's out there? David Cameron's not taking any chances

It's a big shift in the Government's rhetoric, is it? You'd need to have known that first. The "make-up or break-up" speech yesterday might actually have kicked along a bit of history, giving the eurozone some very good advice (how they hate that). If you were only half listening, though, it sounded like anything else the Prime Minister has said this year.

The Sketch: The end of the world is here - keep calm and carry on

The Prime Minister found himself in what passes for existential danger at PMQs. If he lost his temper he'd lose everything. What with his personal poll collapse, the Government's loss of authority, credibility and dignity – the national necessity was that for half an hour Cameron didn't go red and get shouty.

The Sketch: So, Damian Green, who has 'personned' this fall in standards?

There's no way he'd get through security with a face doing that. He must be hiding something

Simon Carr: Why play the bully when manly charm is enough?

Sketch: He said he'd defend the accuracy and honesty of his briefings against any journalist's record

The Sketch: Counsel Jay just couldn't get the better of Andy Coulson

Coulson pointed out that his paper invented 'hug-a-hoodie', which still makes David Cameron look a little silly

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