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Cabinet meetings under Margaret Thatcher were “miserably disappointing” gatherings devoid of debate and filled with “unctuous self-satisfaction”, one her most senior ministers said in 1984.

Boehner faces double challenge that will define his leadership

Dangling pizza slices when members of your own party are refusing to do your bidding might have seemed like a bright idea to John Boehner late on Thursday, but it didn't work. Thin crust or deep pan, they were not enough to spare the Speaker of the House the biggest humiliation of his career.

White House hits out at Republicans over debt crisis

A frustrated White House said Republicans on Capitol Hill were guilty of "crazy" and "juvenile" political posturing as they prepared to push through a bill designed ostensibly to end America's debt crisis, but only for six months. It would guarantee a replay of the stand-off at the end of this year.

The Business On... John Boehner, House Speaker

Can you pronounce that, please?

No deal yet over US default as deadline looms

An immediate deal to prevent the United States from falling into a devastating default remained out of reach today as political factions - congressional Republicans, Democrats and President Barack Obama - remained unable to overcome differences on spending and taxes.

President Obama calls Republicans' bluff on budget crisis

A forthright President Barack Obama told Republican leaders yesterday it was time to take hard decisions to resolve America's budget crisis and that he would refuse to sign a stop-gap package simply to avoid defaulting on the country's $14.3trn (£9trn) debt. The moment is nigh to "eat our peas". he said.

Obama holds talks today to thrash out deal on federal debt

Banks tell politicians to stop playing chicken with markets as Treasury deadline approaches

Presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich's $500,000 jewellery bill

The US Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich has come under attack from fellow conservatives over his views on healthcare and a reported $500,000 jewellery bill.

Amsterdam - up in smoke?

Amsterdam’s relaxed attitude has long been a draw for tourists. But as the city bans visitors from its infamous coffee shops, one resident, Senay Boztas, wonders if the high times are over

Newt Gingrich to run for president

Former House of Representatives speaker Newt Gingrich is to run for president.

The Business On... Elizabeth Warren, Assistant to the US President

The woman Wall Street loves to hate?

Out of the West Wing – and into City Hall?

On the eve of Chicago's mayoral election, David Usborne joins Rahm Emanuel's campaign team for the final push

Obama's $1 trillion cuts 'not enough'

President Barack Obama proposed a budget yesterday that would cut the US deficit by $1.1 trillion (£690bn) over the next 10 years, but Republicans said it did not curb spending deeply enough.

Obama's budget freeze gets a chilly reception

One day after a State of the Union address that called for compromise and conciliation, President Obama faced instant headwinds as an offer to freeze domestic spending for five years got short shrift from Republicans and new projections had the federal deficit growing to $1.5trillion (£940bn).

Spare us the sob story: The lost art of stoicism

From Republican candidates to reality TV contestants, you can't move for weepers. But is visible emotion to be applauded? Peter Stanford thinks we need to reclaim the lost art of stoicism

Andreas Whittam Smith: A revolt against the ruling elite

For some years, the American electorate has been voting consistently against the party in power
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General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat