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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David Cameron acting like a pushy 12-year-old during PMQs

The Sketch: Cameron is omnishambolic – but Miliband is right in the thick of it as well

"It's a bit of a shambles, don't you think?" No sooner were the words out in the press gallery than Ed Miliband – quoting officials quoting The Thick Of It – called it an "omnishambles". It was a fair description of PMQs.

The Sketch: Met chief looks fit for job – unlike some officers

Our masters have their own language to keep them separate from us underpaid vulgarians

Simon Carr: The recess was over – and the Commons returned with a roar

The Sketch: What's this? George Galloway promising to bear true allegiance to her Majesty the Queen?

London mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone

So who's telling the truth? City Hall contenders focus fire on trust game

The three main candidates were greeted with cheers, amused booing – and some mooing. Later on the BNP candidate registered his protest at not being on the platform. He had a very Italian accent (is the party at risk of confusing its supporters?).

The Sketch: Boris socks it to his rival, but don't cry for either of them

And Livingstone wept. When filmed watching his campaign commercials – young people saying how they needed a mayor like him – he cried such tears that they had to be knuckled away with both fists. So skilled an operator is he that he can cry out of one eye at a time so it's obviously serious in Camp Livingstone.

The Sketch: Not many laughs in this Budget, apart from pasties

In a series of sharp but civilised exchanges, Andrew Tyrie probed the Chancellor about the security of the Budget detail.

Simon Carr: Disgrace! Ker-ching! Rowdy Labour indignation as 'ashamed Dave' fails to show

Sketch: Cameron had made his shameful statement in the morning and was cowering in a feculent hole counting £50 notes

The Sketch: The big Budget surprise – Ed displays his true talent as a proper bully

Miliband got up and gave a blistering performance, cutting his finest figure yet as the Opposition leader

Prince Philip looks on as the Queen addresses both Houses of Parliament yesterday

The Sketch: The Queen's gentle dusting of humour outshone the Speaker, king of drivel

Vain, pretentious, the Speaker is in a new stage of development... he is a monarch in his own right

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Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible
Look what's mushrooming now! Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector

Look what's mushrooming now!

Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector
Neil Findlay is more a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

More a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

The vilification of the potential Scottish Labour leader Neil Findlay shows how one-note politics is today, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Tenderstem broccoli omelette; Fried eggs with Mexican-style tomato and chilli sauce; Pan-fried cavolo nero with soft-boiled egg

Oeuf quake

Bill Granger's cracking egg recipes
Terry Venables: Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back

Terry Venables column

Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back
Michael Calvin: Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Those at the top are allowing the same issues to go unchallenged, says Michael Calvin