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Aidan Burley, the Tory MP who bought a Nazi uniform for a friend to wear at a stag party, is presumably relieved by the conclusions of a report by Lord Gold, a Tory peer who was asked by the party to look into the affair. He concluded Mr Burley “is not a bad man, still less a racist or an anti-Semite” but he is stupid.

Budget `97: Who is the man in the iron mask?

Dour child of the manse, Casanova, party in-fighter ... John Rentoul searches for the real Gordon Brown

Election '97: Why the politicians worry about 'Today'

Nine minutes past eight yesterday morning and in the Today programme studio Gordon Brown is worried. And he's not even there.

Election '97: Kings of spin fight for total control

At 8.17am yesterday, the Treasury minister Michael Jack was tackling tough questions on Radio Four's Today programme over his party's tax plans.

City jitters over Labour tax plans

The City fears that Labour may be forced to raise company taxes in a move that could leave businesses and pension funds around pounds 12bn a year worse off and prompt a stock market sell-off.

Knives out for Brown's chief spin doctor

The knives were out for Gordon Brown's chief spin doctor last night after a series of negative briefings against other members of the Shadow Cabinet.

Labour bashes `bloated' Beeb

The BBC and Tony Blair's office were embroiled in an argument yesterday over Labour claims that the corporation was a bloated, overstaffed "Auntie's army".

Bitter lessons ... advantage Cliff ... I buy a guardian

Bonjour! Wilkommen! It has been brought to the Captain's attention that, according to a survey conducted by that estimable body, The Brewers' and Licensed Retailers' Association, many foreign visitors have trouble with the "subtle social rules" that govern correct behaviour in our pubs. This is an area where, happily, I have considerable expertise. Just follow the Captain's instructions and you cannot go wrong. 1) Getting served. This is not a formality. It is a fierce contest with the other customers. Remember, too, that bar staff are trained not to catch your eye, so waving money or smiling is absolutely no use. Subtlety is required. My opening gambit, developed over many years, has yet to fail me: "What ho, Landlord! A pint of cooking for me, please, and whatever you and your charming daughter are having! What? She's your wife? I don't believe it!" 2) Conversation. The saloon is not the salon. Never look at the other person. Stare into your drink or at the middle distance. If addressed, you need only two responses: a) "You're not wrong there" b) "Myself, I blame the Government". As a general rule, you should avoid initiating conversation, but if you must, I have always found this a safe and suitable opener: "Warm enough for you?" 3) Miscellaneous tips: be very wary of men in cravats, men with road maps sticking out of their pockets, women sitting with their legs crossed on bar stools with drinks with cherries in, and pickled eggs.

Will the screeching doctors win with spin?

Paul Routledge lays bare the dark arts of political news manipulation

Motor Racing: Slim pickings in truck paradise: Rob Steen reports from Brands Hatch on the British Truck Grand Prix qualifiers

JUDGING by the plethora of stetsons and CB radio types milling around, you half expected to bump into Dolly Parton and Tammy Wynette at Brands Hatch yesterday. Officially, the reason for the gathering was the qualifying rounds for the British Truck Grand Prix. The atmosphere, though, was more redolent of a Country 'n' Western festival, Americana incarnate. A gleaming red Peterbilt truck - complete with obligatory Dixie flag - was the main focus of attention on the concourse. The Grand Marshall, moreover, was none other than that C W McCall of Coronation Street, John St Ryan, aka Bet Gilroy's boyfriend Charlie Whelan. It seemed only right and proper that one of the races should have been won by a chap named Slim.
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Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London