Arts and Entertainment

Press "Play" and stand well back: RR+P's 1981 debut is still strong stuff, with a level of energy and experiment that shames today's boho fringe.

What do you call a slow reindeer? A steak. Get running, Rudolph

In Lapland they love racing reindeer, eating reindeer - 'tongue or bum, any way you like' - and singing about reindeer. Kevin Pilley tries it all - and buys a reindeer CD

Pop: This Week's Album Releases

RZA

Today's MPs are a bunch of toothless sycophants

I made a complete fool of myself but it taught me that my job was to fight for my constituents

Labour Conference: PR battleground is still wide open

PUBLIC backing for electoral reform could be easily overturned by a vigorous "No" campaign in any referendum, according to research by Tony Blair's personal pollster.

Leading Article: A self-induced tartan nightmare

THAT TONY Blair is to make yet another of his morale boosting trips to Scotland this Thursday speaks volumes about the panicky mood in the Labour camp. The cause of the panic can be summed up in three letters: SNP. Despite a "summer offensive" against the Nats, Mr Blair's party still trail them in the polls. Labour has long regarded Scotland as its fiefdom and their predicament is as unfamiliar as it is uncomfortable.

Blair pledges boost to NHS

A MULTI-billion pound cash injection into the National Health Service was agreed last week, after a meeting between Tony Blair and Chancellor Gordon Brown. The extra cash, expected to amount to between pounds 10bn and pounds 16bn over three years, has been promised in a letter to Cabinet colleagues and will be linked directly to the modernisation of the NHS.

Parliament & politics: Land mines: MPs work overtime to ratify mine ban

HARD-WORKING MPs may sit for an extra day to ensure that the international ban on land-mines becomes law in Britain before the summer, it was announced last night.

Abortion law fears

SCOTLAND

New spectre of religious violence haunts Indonesia

Just weeks after winning political freedom Muslim radicals are talking of creating a fundamentalist state

Tony has some little lambs, but they never ever bleat

Labour's strangely quiet backbenchers

Beckett climbs down over threat of corporate governance legislation

The Government yesterday ruled out introducing legislation to improve corporate governance standards in Britain's boardrooms for the remainder of this Parliament.

Sorry I'm not cool, but that doesn't mean I'm no use

A reply to Wayne Hemingway, who accused New Labour of being old at heart
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there