Voices

Like many men, I am a lazy, good-for-nothing, selfish, forgetful, patronising, sex-obsessed bastard who drinks too much. Or so my wife points out. It's strange that I have ended up like this. I tried not to. I really did.

Regency artist who lampooned politicians was on state payroll

The 18th-century artist Thomas Rowlandson, known for his savage mockeries of royalty and politics, was actually a paid-for propagandist, according to a new biography.

Getting Our Way, By Christopher Meyer

In Getting Our Way, Christopher Meyer, the former British ambassador to Washington, argues for a rejuvenated Foreign Office, based on a clear-eyed vision of the national interest. With some candour, he decries the "daft utopianism of global values" that has diminished the role of British diplomacy.

Communist Party elders call for free speech in China

A group of eminent Chinese Communist Party elders has issued a bold call to end the country's wide-ranging restrictions on free speech, just days after the government reacted angrily to the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to the imprisoned dissident Liu Xiaobo.

Somali PM resigns from split government

The Somali Prime Minister resigned yesterday, paying the price for the government's failure to rein in an Islamist insurgency that has killed thousands of civilians.

Power to the pictures: The evolution of propaganda

From ancient carvings to Norman tapestries, political portraits to public health posters, propaganda has taken man forms over the centuries. Holly Williams charts its evolution

Last Night's TV: Digging for Britain/BBC2<br />The King Is Dead/BBC3

We don't, says Dr Alice Roberts, the engaging host of Digging for Britain, know very much about the Anglo-Saxons. This is an immense relief to me. I can pretty much guarantee that I know less than most. In fact, I know virtually nothing: pre-modern history does, and probably always will, form an impenetrable black hole in my admittedly already pretty vacant brain. I'm not quite sure what it is: mention the Victorians and I'm all over it. But take me back to the fifth century and I back away like a rabbit in headlights. People then (at least this has always been my reasoning) were just so different. How can we possibly relate?

10-point plan for getting BA back in the sky

Never mind Acas: Simon Calder offers both sides a free consultation on how to settle this disastrous dispute

Fight The Power: Twenty Years of the Political Poster

A collection of propaganda-based art will be exhibited in June at Birmingham’s Custard Factory.

Seven children killed in Chinese school attack

Seven children and a teacher were hacked to death and at least 20 others injured today at a kindergarten in China's north-west Shaanxi province.

BNP goes upmarket to target white middle class

Legal defeat prompts far-right party to 'refocus its propaganda on a new front'

Second World War propaganda posters fetch &pound;15,000

A rare collection of Second World War propaganda posters sold for almost £15,000 when they went under the hammer today.

Simon Calder: A flight from reality as it gets difficult to discern fact from propaganda

The revenue from the passengers was negligible; their value was as a weapon

The truth about maps: How cartographers distort reality

As a fascinating new exhibition shows, it's not always what they put in that matters &ndash; but what they leave out

Errors & Omissions: Innocent words become casualties in the propaganda war

Hands up, all those who are anti-life. Thank you. Now those who are anti-choice. Thank you. Well, not many hands will have gone up; probably none.

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NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own