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Polly Toynbee

Polly Toynbee

The Guardian

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The manifesto Britain needs The Tories have sucked the joy from the education system. Here are three ways Labour can bring it back

Children became unhappier in the past decade, according to the annual Good Childhood report. The number of eight to 16-year-olds with mental health...

29.02.2024 100

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Most Britons say poor people deserve support. So what do Sunak’s Tories do? Cut, cut, cut

The alarm sounds over and over again. Every organisation concerned with the cost of living and children going without is trying to alert the public to...

27.02.2024 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Commons needed to focus on the horror in Gaza. Instead this was a grubby game of political chess

A squalid day in parliament. The most important of debates was the most pointless and dishonest. It preached on the high ground and played politics in...

22.02.2024 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Tory press can publish all the tax avoidance guides they like – the rich won’t flee a Labour government

It’s a done deal – just about. Down at the bookies, you can get 14/1 on a Tory majority at the next general election, while betting on Labour to...

20.02.2024 50

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Tory press can publish all the tax evasion guides they like - the rich won’t flee a Labour government

It’s a done deal – just about. Down at the bookies, you can get 14/1 on a Tory majority at the next general election, while betting on Labour to...

20.02.2024 7

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Revealed: Donald Trump’s secret to looking younger

16.02.2024 4

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The voters of Wellingborough and Kingswood said one thing with one voice: the Tory era is over

The rout of the Tories gallops on across the country, as yesterday the voters of Wellingborough and Kingswood stampeded away from them in yet more...

16.02.2024 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

We’ve heard lots about what Labour won’t do, but here’s something they should: close the Tories’ tax loopholes

The prime minister’s tax return crept out with the house in recess. But the front page of the Financial Times splashed a blunt warning: “Sunak...

13.02.2024 30

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Starmer’s £28bn green plan was bungled but Labour still has bold hopes for the country – and the planet

“Labour is running scared!” blasts the Telegraph. How did that happen? To see a party with an unswerving 20% lead chased away from its headline...

09.02.2024 30

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

First photo ID, now votes for expats: the Tories are showing us exactly what election rigging looks like

It may have passed you by that last week was Welcome to Your Vote week, encouraging sixth-formers to get excited about a vote denied to them. “We...

06.02.2024 20

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Guardian Opinion cartoon Ben Jennings on Labour’s refusal to reinstate the bankers’ bonus cap – cartoon

01.02.2024 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

It’s time for Labour to kick back against the Tory attacks. This is where it should start

Like a hornet in the ear, that £28bn is buzzed into every voter. Tory central office sends out daily attack press releases that say nothing else....

01.02.2024 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Wales has been brave enough to completely rethink the hated council tax. Take note, England

It is the very worst of taxes. (Probably – there’s tough competition for that title.) Council tax is, as it stands, “indefensible” says the...

30.01.2024 100

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Banning prayer rituals in school? Just get religion out of education completely

Schools are too often the crucible in which social conflicts are fought out, with teachers expected to put right whatever we fail to fix in the world...

23.01.2024 70

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Sunak is praying for the Lords to block the Rwanda bill – so he can blame the left

Feuding parties never win, No 10’s flailing political guru, Isaac Levido, warned rebellious MPs last week. Though the prime minister’s position is...

18.01.2024 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Ben Shankland is a GP, but the rightwing press would tell you he’s an enemy of the people. Don’t listen

Why would they do that? The sheer perversity is incomprehensible. Just when ministers and the opposition call for more community treatment to prevent...

16.01.2024 90

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Britain is a poorer, sicker place. No wonder disability claims have trebled in a decade

Any government would take fright at the astonishing rise in people on disability benefits. It began pre-pandemic, but really shot up afterwards. Rishi...

12.01.2024 80

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

As Sunak tumbles headlong into traps of his own making, all Labour needs to do is watch

Never interrupt your enemy when he’s making a mistake. So said Napoleon (though you would never know he ever had an interesting thought, judging by...

09.01.2024 9

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The six things Keir Starmer can do to restore our faith in politics – fast

In his first speech of 2024, the message from the man who will be prime minister this time next year (barring a large asteroid crashing into Earth)...

05.01.2024 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Royal Mail has been heading for collapse for years. Now it can’t even deliver my Christmas present

It was nice of Royal Mail to send me a message. “Delivered”, it said. To prove it, there was a photo of my parcel on the doorstep. Except it...

22.12.2023 100

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Starmer’s £28bn green pledge is a vote winner. Labour must ignore Tory attacks and keep the faith

Just as I sat down to write this, yet another one thumped into my inbox. “£28bn every year … Labour have not changed – their irresponsible...

18.12.2023 6

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

I spent a day in a court where ‘no-fault’ evictions reach 10 an hour. Whose fault is this, Rishi Sunak?

This is where the housing pressure-cooker explodes. This is Manchester’s civil court, like others all across England, where people are made...

15.12.2023 90

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Ruth Perry tragedy must mark the end of Ofsted’s reign of fear

After her suicide and the coroner’s judgment, Ruth Perry’s name will mark not just the downfall of Ofsted’s reign of fear, but an end to the...

12.12.2023 40

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Of course the Tories will do anything to stop migrants. You know the ones: students, carers, nurses …

Notwithstanding the sound and fury of the Conservative party descending into more mayhem, pledging to cut immigration will not be its saviour. If the...

08.12.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Free childcare for 30 hours a week? It sounds too good to be true – and for worse-off families, it is

Free childcare! Thirty hours a week from nine months until primary school was the eye-catcher in the chancellor’s spring budget. Was this, finally,...

05.12.2023 40

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Where do we find the £100bn needed to fix Britain? Margaret Hodge has the answer

The country staggers under the effects of austerity, Brexit and extreme mismanagement of just about everything, ensuring Covid and the ramifications...

30.11.2023 7

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Too many pupils miss lessons, says Ofsted, and that’s right. Call it the Michael Gove effect

The bond is breaking between many children, parents and schools, with rising absences and more disruption. Even allowing for post-pandemic mental...

28.11.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Jeremy Hunt will say the NHS is treating fewer patients with more money. Whose fault is that, chancellor?

Winter is coming, as it always does, and the NHS creaks and groans. The chancellor will not tomorrow hand over the £1bn it needs to cover the cost of...

21.11.2023 50

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Cameron is no moderating influence. The Tories’ autumn statement will prove that

What flavour of government have we here? Amid this week’s drama at the eviction of Suella Braverman, there has been too much talk of a U-turn back...

17.11.2023 6

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Suella Braverman is sunk, and so are the Tories: a party of nihilists, led by a loser

The home secretary, queen of the anti-woke, is gone, again. Her grandstanding infuriated many colleagues, yet most of them share the same sinking...

13.11.2023 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Guardian Opinion cartoon Suella Braverman’s leadership ambitions by Ben Jennings – cartoon

09.11.2023 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

With bursting jails and Europe’s longest sentences, the last thing the UK needs is more rightwing ‘reforms’

Here we go again, tightening the screw and lengthening prison sentences to please that insatiable appetite among some voters for locking up more...

09.11.2023 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

This king’s speech will hold the last cruel words of a Tory party facing oblivion

The silk bag holds the government’s plans not just for a year but for “the next 70”, says the prime minister, whose sands of time are fast...

06.11.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

During Covid, callous Tories knew this about old people: they’re very expensive

Let “the bodies pile high in their thousands”, Boris Johnson supposedly said. Not once but often, the Covid inquiry has heard that he was for...

03.11.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Labour calling for a ceasefire would achieve nothing. So why should it tear itself apart over this?

Day after day we watch the pulverising of Gaza as deaths reach more than 8,300 according to the Hamas-run health ministry; thousands more are certain...

31.10.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Why are so many female voters undecided? Labour can engage them with policies, not politics

There have been times when I (very secretly) wished women had never got the vote. In nearly every election from 1945 to 2015, more women voted Tory...

27.10.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Guardian view on the legacy of Judith Kerr: a cat, a rabbit and a tiger that romp on

The lasting influence of some children’s books is one of the ironies of literary life – when considered alongside their lowly status, and the much...

23.10.2023 4

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Exhausted, but still cruel, the Tories continue to detach themselves from ordinary voters

A doomed party in freefall loses whatever shred of sanity it had left. After byelections that show no seat is safe, Tory MPs shriek at the pilot, turn...

23.10.2023 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

A reason to be hopeful: in Poland they’ve kicked out the rightwing populists. Britain can too

In a darkening world, a radiant beam shines out from Poland. Look, it is possible to push back the authoritarian populist tide. Extreme rightwingers...

20.10.2023 5

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Half a million of us want to donate our data to British science, but it’s languishing unused because of privacy fears

I delight in messages from UK Biobank, making me feel useful for minimal effort. Back in 2006, with half a million others aged between 40 and 69, I...

17.10.2023 6

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

I went to Labour conference in search of its plans for radical reform – what I found gave me hope

H ere’s one dog that didn’t bark at Labour’s conference, amid the clapping and the sparkling. Only a few months ago, Keir Starmer’s refusal to...

13.10.2023 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Guardian view on exam reform: schools have more acute problems than a narrow curriculum

T here is a case for changing the post-16 curriculum in English schools. Education is devolved, but the Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh governments...

10.10.2023 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

To all the doubters who still think Labour too tame: read its policies – and finally believe

H olding their breath, curbing their enthusiasm, Labour people do their best not to burst out singing. High command bans glee and gloating, yet...

09.10.2023 6

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Guardian Opinion cartoon Ben Jennings on Rishi Sunak’s support for motorists – cartoon

06.10.2023 100

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Rishi Sunak knows the end is nigh, but has no clue how to build a decent legacy. He should ask me

“R ishi Sunak is a man in a hurry,” briefs his Downing Street press secretary. Yes, indeed: Tory prime minister No 5, your time is nearly up. But...

05.10.2023 4

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Guardian Opinion cartoon Ben Jennings on the Conservative party conference – cartoon

02.10.2023 3

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Tories are running scared, but we should all fear what they may become

“I want to scare the shit out of you,” Frank Luntz, a focus-grouper to the US right, proclaimed to the Tory party audience. He hardly needed to....

02.10.2023 4

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

We have all felt powerless as poverty mounts in Tory Britain. Here is a practical way to hold back the tide

W inter is coming, and it will be harsher. People in “negative income”, whose incomings don’t cover their bills, are about to be hit even...

29.09.2023 10

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

The Tories have warped an already crooked electoral system, pushing millions of voters off the roll

Rishi Sunak has brandished the starting gun for the election, but “cutting the green crap” has misfired badly. The national mood is unlikely to...

26.09.2023 100

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

Sunak’s anti-green stance exposes his reckless dishonesty. His fate is what matters, the planet can go hang

N ow we see him. Rishi Sunak, who has ducked and dived to try to hold off the civil war in his party, emerges as just another in the line of shameless...

21.09.2023 4

The Guardian

Polly Toynbee

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