Hard-left think tank New Economics Foundation have advocated a number of novel proposals for the economy in recent years including a four-day or even 21-hour working week and a Green Party idea of replacing GDP with a ‘Free Time Index’. They’ve adopted a range of positions on growth from “growth isn’t working” to “growth isn’t possible”, although their own dislike of economic growth doesn’t stop them from periodically attacking the Tories for apparently reducing economic growth via austerity policies. No wonder John McDonnell is a big fan… They’ve certainly not had any trouble with their own economic growth, their annual income is sitting at a healthy £3,517,793. What’s less healthy is the fact that £529,554 of their income over the last three years has come from NHS England. NHS England gave £234,919 last year alone, they were the NEF’s second-biggest source of income for 2017-8. The NHS could have spent that money on training new nurses or covering the cost of over 60,000 prescriptions, instead they’ve decided to give it to a hard-left think tank to bash the Tories…
The deaths of eleven patients, including two young children, have been linked to glitches in the algorithms used by the NHS 111 and 999 services. Coroners have issued warnings about the “triaging” system after a catalogue of safety concerns. The “prevention of future death” reports were issued because of fears the tragedies would be repeated, without swift action to improve the service and reduce the risk of fatal errors. The cases include Sebastian Hibberd, who died aged six when 111 call handlers failed to spot warning signs that his bowel had collapsed, and two-year-old Robert Hogg, who died from a bacterial infection when the seriousness of his condition was missed.
Philip Hammond has issued a fresh warning to Boris Johnson that he will do ‘everything I can’ to stop the Tory leadership favourite from delivering a No Deal Brexit. The Chancellor, who said he will not serve in the incoming government amid widespread speculation he will be sacked, insisted he would try to support the new administration led by Mr Johnson or Jeremy Hunt. But he said that if Theresa May‘s successor attempted to ‘drive the UK over a cliff-edge’ by trying to leave the EU without an agreement, he would dedicate himself to trying to stop that outcome from the backbenches.
Any attempt by the next prime minister to suspend Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit is likely to end up in the Supreme Court, a Tory MP has said. Sir Oliver Letwin told the BBC it was not clear whether MPs had the numbers to stop a no-deal Brexit themselves. But if the government tried to get its way by by-passing Parliament, he said it would become a “legal question”. Campaigners say they will challenge any “prorogation” of Parliament to allow Brexit on 31 October without a deal.
Unelected peers in the House of Lords are plotting to prevent the next prime minister from suspending parliament and facilitating a no-deal Brexit. Conservative Party leadership hopeful Boris Johnson has pledged to take the United Kingdom out of the EU on October 31st with or without a deal, but Remainers in the House of Commons are conspiring to find ways to stop the country leaving the bloc in a clean break. To stop Remainers frustrate Brexit, the next prime minister could prorogue (temporarily suspend) the parliament in the autumn — an option which Mr Johnson has not ruled out.
The chance of a WTO Brexit in October could be rising – if you take the Tory leadership contenders at their word. Or is it going to prove to be just more guff? Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt went head-to-head in a Sun debate yesterday, both calling for the backstop to be scrapped. Not just to be tweaked or changed – but kaboshed. As BoJo put it: “No to time limits or unilateral escape hatches, or elaborate devices, codicils that you could apply to the backstop.
THE Tories will collapse if Britain ends up holding a snap election before Brexit, Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt both warned today. Both candidates to be PM ruled out calling an early General Election as they clashed for the last time at a debate hosted by The Sun and talkRADIO. It came as the two Tory rivals appeared to kiss and make up after a bruising campaign, cracking a string of gags in front of an audience of Sun readers at our London HQ.
Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson ruled out calling a snap general election as they clashed for the final time in the battle for Downing Street. Their comments came as MPs of all parties prepare for a possible autumn poll on the grounds that it could be the only way out of the Brexit impasse. Mr Johnson, the favourite for the Tory leadership, insisted that he “absolutely” would not go to the country before Britain had left the European Union. “It would be the height of folly,” he told the debate hosted by The Sun and talkRADIO.
Boris Johnson has refused to commit to bringing down net immigration after Brexit if he becomes Prime Minister as he and Jeremy Hunt went head-to-head in the final debate of the leadership contest. Mr Johnson, who is the frontrunner to win the race to be Tory leader in a week’s time, said he was not “going to get into a numbers game” when asked if he would bring down net immigration levels. The comments are likely to fuel concerns among Tory members that Mr Johnson – whose politics are socially liberal – will not bear down on immigration numbers if he gets the keys to Number 10.
Boris Johnson refused to commit himself to cutting net migration if he becomes prime minister as he was accused by Jeremy Hunt of “betraying the spirit” of the Brexit referendum. Pressed repeatedly on whether his plans to cut net migration through an Australian-style points system would reduce the number of people coming to the UK, he said: “I’m not going to get into some numbers game.” He said people had voted to “control” migration rather than reduce it outright.
Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt have declared the Northern Ireland backstop “dead” and promised to throw it out of any deal they negotiate with the EU, in comments that significantly harden their Brexit positions. The Tory leadership rivals both ruled out trying to tweak the backstop, which critics said could trap the UK indefinitely in a customs union with the EU. They said it would not feature in any deal with the EU, saying it was no good to have a time limit on it or a way of the UK exiting it unilaterally – even though Eurosceptics had previously indicated they could vote for such compromises.
Two of Jeremy Corbyn’s closest advisers appeared on a panel with a former Muslim Brotherhood spokesman who said that Israeli Jews “are not Jews”. In 2012 Seumas Milne, who is now Mr Corbyn’s communications chief, chaired “Where now for Egypt and the Middle East?”, an event at the University of London. Andrew Murray, 61, who advises Mr Corbyn, was one of the speakers, as was George Galloway, then a Respect MP, and Kate Hudson, general secretary of CND.
JEREMY CORBYN is understood to be making an urgent visit to Labour HQ to address staff after the party’s leader was accused of creating a “mental health crisis” among the workforce “caused by the culture, rise in anti-Semitism and unsustainable workloads”. In a motion submitted to the GMB trade union today, the hundreds of staff members also criticised the party’s response to last week’s BBC Panorama documentary, demanding Labour now commits itself to a position of “support for whistleblowers”. The GMB motion said: “To hire people with those views is a shocking betrayal of Labour staff, the Jewish community and Labour’s history as an anti-racist party.”
Jeremy Corbyn has come under renewed pressure as more than 200 former and current staff challenged him to resign if he could not renew trust in Labour party’s dealings with employees, and senior Labour peers offered to step in to overhaul its antisemitism complaints procedures. Labour is to hold an extraordinary shadow cabinet meeting next Monday to address concerns on antisemitism and Corbyn will address MPs on the issue on the same day.
Jeremy Corbyn has been forced to hold an emergency meeting of his shadow cabinet and a showdown with his MPs as the antisemitism crisis engulfing Labour threatened to spiral out of control. The Labour leader bowed to demands for action after coming under fierce attack from the party’s most senior peers and from current and former staff members over his response to a TV documentary. Mr Corbyn’s reaction to the peers and staffers’ attacks was announced at another heated meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) at which Mr Corbyn was condemned by Jewish MPs and the PLP chairman, John Cryer.
Labour’s leadership is facing a furious backlash from the party’s own staff over its treatment of staff over the anti-Semitism crisis. More than 200 current and former party workers signed a stinging letter calling on Jeremy Corbyn to “own” the “moral responsibility for Labour ’s anti-Semitism crisis” or “give it away to someone who will.” Last week’s programme included claims that senior figures, including Jeremy Corbyn’s communications chief Seumas Milne and general secretary Jennie Formby, interfered in anti-Semitism investigations.
DOUBT has been cast over the entire investigation into anti-semitism in the Labour Party as the Morning Star reveals conflict of interest fears going right to the top of the equalities watchdog tasked with carrying out the probe. Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) chairman David Isaac receives substantial sums of money from a law firm that advises the Conservative government, the Star has discovered. Mr Isaac is paid £500 for each day he does work for the commission, but his main job is as an equity partner at City law firm Pinsent Masons.
BOTH Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt branded Jeremy Corbyn an anti-Semite last night as the pair competed over their anti-Labour rhetoric. Mr Corbyn’s entire Labour leadership has been rocked by claims of anti-Semitism and hit a new low last week with a damning Panoroma documentary that found his top aides had interfered to protect hard-left members accused of racism. Asked in tonight’s Sun leadership debate if he believed Mr Corbyn was personally anti-Semitic, Mr Hunt won applause as he replied: “Unfortunately, he may be.”
Jeremy Corbyn must ‘throw open’ Labour’s files to the human rights watchdog investigating alleged anti-Semitism in the party, one of his frontbenchers said last night. The Labour leader has been forced to appear before his furious backbenchers following the fallout from last week’s BBC Panorama programme, it emerged yesterday. Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer announced at last night’s meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party that the Shadow Cabinet will hold a special meeting to discuss the crisis next week.
Jean-Claude Juncker’s potential replacement as the president of the European Commission has said she is open to a further Brexit delay – but only if it is for a ‘good reason’. Ursula von der Leyen said in a letter to MEPs that if she is elected as Mr Juncker’s successor then she will strive to secure an ‘ambitious and strategic partnership’ with the UK. In a major boost for Remain campaigners she said that she would support a further extension beyond the current October 31 deadline.
The woman lined up to replace Jean-Claude Juncker as European Union commission president has said she is open to extending Brexit talks past October, a letter seen by The Independent reveals. Ursula von der Leyen, who was tapped by member states for the top job in Brussels, said she would “support a further extension if good reasons are provided” beyond the current deadline. But the German politician was emphatic she would not change the deal struck by Theresa May, adding: “The withdrawal agreement negotiated with the United Kingdom is the best and only possible deal for an orderly withdrawal.”
FRANCE’S top financial regulator is calling for the EU’s rigid structures to be reformed as Britain prepare for Brexit. Robert Ophèle, chairman of the Financial Markets Regulator (AMF), is demanding the restrictive EU rules change as they currently leave little room for national authorities to adapt to changing environments, such as Brexit. In EU law making, the rules for the single market are set out by politicians in “Level 1” and are made workable by officials but once they are in Level 1, they are inflexible.
Police across the UK began the first ever national crackdown on forced marriage at a number of airports on Monday as latest figures show a spike in children being trafficked abroad to marry family members or acquaintances. The most common destinations are seen as India, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates, Somalia and Bangladesh. A number of support charities have joined police alongside social and health services in working with the Border Force for Operation Limelight.
European powers including the UK have warned that their continued support for the Iran nuclear deal is dependent on Tehran coming back in line with provisions limiting its stockpiles of enriched uranium. As foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt travelled to Brussels for talks with EU counterparts on Iran scheduled for Monday, the so-called E3 nations – Britain, France and Germany – issued a last-ditch bid to keep the four-year-old deal alive, calling for “signs of goodwill” from the Islamic republic.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said there was a “small window” to save the Iran nuclear deal, as he launched a fresh bid to ease tensions in the Gulf. Mr Hunt has been meeting EU foreign ministers to raise concerns about Iran breaching some of its commitments. The deal, which involves Iran limiting nuclear activities in return for the easing of economic sanctions, is under pressure after the US withdrew in 2018. The summit comes amid heightened tensions between the UK and Iran. The UK seized an Iranian oil tanker earlier this month and, in response, Iran threatened to detain a British oil tanker.
THERESA MAY’s energy price cap was branded a flop last night as new figures revealed the Big Six rip off has got WORSE. Campaigners said the difference between the most expensive standard tariff and cheap internet deals had ballooned from an average of £174 a year to £214. A switching site claimed E.ON’s cheapest deal was a whopping £311 less than the standard tariff offered by the company. The price cap came into force in January – with Downing Street promising it would put an end to millions of older, loyal customers on standard variable tariffs being overcharged.
Primary schools have been “hung out to dry” by local and national political leaders in the row over LGBT teaching in Birmingham, a prominent rights lawyer has said. Nazir Afzal challenged mosques and community leaders to “stop whispering in secret” about the issue and open up about possible solutions “so we can have these discussions in the open”. An estimated 370 children were kept off school at Parkfield Community School in Birmingham on one day last week in protest at moves to reinstate an amended version of the award-winning No Outsiders equality teaching programme from September.
Climate change protesters are blocking streets in five cities and claim the disruption will go on in different places all week during a “summer uprising”. Extinction Rebellion said it had 500 people willing to go to prison and another 500 prepared to be arrested at its protests in London, Leeds, Bristol, Cardiff and Glasgow. The group, which is demanding drastic action to reduce emissions including removing all petrol and diesel vehicles by 2025, said it wanted to cause significant disruption in other cities after its success in bringing parts of London to a standstill in April.
Extinction Rebellion has carried out protests in five UK cities, marking the start of what it describes as a “summer uprising”. The environmental activist group is calling for greater government action against the climate emergency. Monday’s demonstrations – targeting London, Cardiff, Leeds, Bristol and Glasgow – caused disruption to traffic in parts of the cities. Protests in each city are focusing on a different ecological threat: rising sea levels, floods, wildfires, crop failures and extreme weather.
CLIMATE campaign group Extinction Rebellion took to the streets in five British cities today with a “summer uprising” campaign of disruption demanding government action to halt global warming. Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds and London were targeted, with key streets and bridges blocked using boats — the symbol adopted by Extinction Rebellion during the movement’s disruption of the centre of London in April. The protests are to last five days in what the campaigners call a “Summer Uprising.” Their demands to the government include the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025 and the founding of a “national assembly” on climate change, environmental destruction and the actions needed to combat them.
Time is running out to repair the damage to the planet that human beings have done, Environment Secretary Michael Gove is warning. In a keynote speech at Kew Gardens on Tuesday, Mr Gove will say there is a political, economic and moral need to act to tackle climate change and reverse wildlife losses. And he will say that 2020 will be a crucial year for deciding the future of the planet, with international summits aimed at agreeing new deals for the oceans and for nature and increasing ambition on tackling climate change.
A warning of infertile soil, oceans full of plastic, contaminated water and severe weather – unless climate change is tackled – is being issued by the Environment Secretary, Michael Gove. In what could be his last speech in the job, with a new prime minister replacing Theresa May next week, Mr Gove is warning that time is running out to repair the damage done to the planet. In a speech at Kew Gardens, he is pledging that the UK will play a major role in international summits on biodiversity and the oceans next year and also pass legislation to improve the environment.