Week of Jan 10 – Jan 16

author: sparkhurst 10:30 am EST January 10, 2012
Looking at the news and opinion out of London each day. 1-14-12

Kinnock condemns Labour 'cowards'

Former Labour leader Lord Kinnock has lashed out at "cowards" within the party over criticism of Ed Miliband's performance. 1-13-12

Debt crisis: Eurozone back on the brink as France has credit rating downgraded

The eurozone crisis entered a dangerous new phase as France and eight other European countries had their credit ratings downgraded.

Sensible plans to deal with poor teachers

Education Secretary Michael Gove's plans to speed up the removal of poor teachers mark the latest stage in his determined battle with the educational establishment. Many parents will back moves to simplify and shorten the process for sacking seriously under-performing teachers in England from the current minimum of 24 weeks to just nine. And headteachers back the plans, after a lengthy consultation. Nevertheless, Mr Gove faces a serious battle with the teaching unions.

The battle to save the Union is under way

David Cameron’s brave decision to force the hand of Alex Salmond, Scotland’s First Minister, has re-energised the supporters of the Union. 1-12-12

Has Ed Miliband anything to offer beyond fratricide?

A Tory Cabinet minister admitted to me earlier this week that he prays every day for Ed Miliband to remain leader of the Labour Party. It is an exaggeration to say that the Conservatives' hopes of a clear majority at the next election rest on his slender shoulders. But it certainly helps David Cameron's case that the man who will be his principal opponent on polling day is increasingly regarded as unelectable. 1-11-12

All change in Whitehall, but who’ll go where?

An almighty scrap for office space reflects the turmoil in the corridors of power.

Alex Salmond does not make Scottish independence inexorable

The Scottish Nationalist party leader wants a referendum deal – because without it the SNP is more likely to lose

Migration caps aren't about protecting British workers

Reduce net migration if you must, but don't expect it to improve the lot of the lowest skilled and lowest paid

Tony Blair was the Great Gatsby of our time

A new film version of The Great Gatsby is to be released this year. Rachel Salvidge wonders whether Fitzgerald's great novel has lessons for the 21st century.

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