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The thick of it: How to be chancellor (and survive)

No political office is more demanding – and as this week's revelations of tensions between Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling illustrate, none is less forgiving. For his latest BBC series, Michael Cockerell asked chancellors past and present how they survived Whitehall's toughest brief

Darling growth prediction blown out of the water

Less than a year ago, Chancellor Alistair Darling was predicting a return to growth in the second half of this year in his Pre-Budget Report.

A degree will leave you with debts of £23,500

...but there's a 1 in 5 chance that you'll also meet the love of your life

Darling sticks with a rather battered tradition

When Labour came to power in 1997, Gordon Brown marked new beginnings by ditching the battered old Budget box that had been passed down the generations since 1860.

John Rentoul: Cameron's game plan was to sit tight and say precisely nothing

David Cameron's response to the Budget was extraordinary. He sat tight and said nothing. Well, it did not look like it or sound like it. It looked and sounded like an energetic, passionate excoriation of a failed and failing government. The Leader of the Opposition was technically standing up at the time. His lips were moving; sound was emanating from him; some of his lines were so cutting that Labour MPs laughed; his posture was active. But really, he was sitting with his knees together, his hands clamped between them and he was saying nothing. He was sitting and waiting for the great big caboodle – of office, importance, action and the chance to start afresh – to fall into his lap.

Jeremy Warner: Don't count on China to act as the locomotive

Outlook As expected, the big emerging- market economies of Asia are proving more resilient to the global recession than the advanced, industrialised economies of the West and Japan. But can that resilience lift the rest of the world out of its funk? This seems rather less likely.

Green shoots? Not on the day unemployment hits two million

Brown allies slap down Solicitor General for sounding upbeat on jobs

Pandora: Hay fever: Rebellion in Booth's kingdom

The pitched battle between the booksellers of Hay-on-Wye and the renowned literary town's self-styled "King" Richard Booth is threatening to get ugly.

Jeremy Warner: Baroness Vadera puts foot in mouth

Outlook The Government has been accused of copying proposed Tory remedies on the credit crunch. Now it seems intent on copying their howlers too. Baroness Vadera, the business minister, is presumably too young, or perhaps ignorant, to know the origins of the famous "green shoots" of economic recovery comment, which she was coaxed into using in an interview for ITV yesterday.

Minister sees 'green shoots' of recovery

A Government minister said today that she could see a few "green shoots" of economic recovery.

Euro membership: no longer a burning issue

The question of whether to join the euro has so completely disappeared from political discourse in the UK that it is a struggle to recall how live an issue it was just 10 years ago.

<a href="http://s-ogrady.livejournal.com/953.html">Sean O'Grady: Don't blame the banks</a>

Here we go again: banks as scapegoats once more. It was a very similar story in the last recession, in the early 1990s; at that time it was the banks' interest and other charges that were supposedly crucifying small businesses, and Chancellor Norman Lamont was the subject of media campaigns to stop the banks behaving like normal businesses.

Credit crisis diary: 02/12/2008

Return to the Thirties at Peter Jones

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Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific