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In annual address, the President says 'too many Americans are working more than ever just to get by – let alone get ahead'

Tom Jones: Businessman

Tom Jones was chief executive of the US aerospace company Northrop for 30 years and took it to the top of its field during the Cold War while weathering a series of scandals. He took the company from a secondary aerospace subcontractor to a leading manufacturer of military aircraft, including the F-5 and F-18 fighter jets and the B-2 stealth bomber.

What’s wrong with the Tories? Why aren’t they being more optimistic?

Voters will turn away if they keep hearing sneers and grumbles from Cameron and co

James Gray enjoys lunch at The Holiday Inn in Sutton with Marian and John Cunningham

Page 3 Profile: James Gray, Christmas diner

He looks like he’s enjoying a nice Christmas dinner

Marco Rubio’s Chatham House speech received applause; but can he convince fellow Republicans?

Michael Ford: Political consultant

Democratic party strategist who guided presidential candidates like Humphrey, McGovern and Mondale

Andy McSmith's Diary: Death-wish cyclists, mooning children and a debate about litter

There has been some agonising in London about why six cyclists were killed on the roads in the space of less than two weeks. To this discussion, Lord James of Blackheath has made his distinctive contribution. His experience is that cyclists are “longing” to be run over. He told the House of Lords, during a debate on litter: “I have seen cyclists put their cycles up against the central reservation... and defy you to run them down while they photograph you doing it. This is what they are longing for.”

Part of history: Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker star in Lee Daniels's 'The Butler'

Film review: The Butler - 'A schmatlzy trawl through African-American history'

The film-makers take a tableau approach to storytelling, whisking us from one melodramatic set-piece to the next

Book review: Hollywood Left and Right, By Steven J Ross

Tinseltown's most radical put the glitz into politics

Static states: Federal workers protest at the shutdown, at the Capitol

Obamacare begins – and the right is terrified that it will work

Out of America: While all the talk is of shutdown, schemes for those without health cover open for business

A scene from Handbagged by Moira Buffini

Theatre review: Handbagged - Thatcher and the Queen make for a mischievous double act

The Queen and Margaret Thatcher are fast becoming as staple a stage double act as Hinge and Bracket. The pair featured in one of the testier confrontations in Peter Morgan’s The Audience. Now Moira Buffini has developed a sketch she wrote for the Tricycle’s 2010 Women, Power and Politics season into a fully fledged play.

US Government shutdown: What does it mean? And what are the papers saying?

A partial shutdown of the US government has begun after the two houses of Congress failed to agree a budget last night, with the Republican-led House of Representatives adamant they would only agree to a deal if it included a delay to the start of Obamacare, the President’s package of health reforms.

Labour Party Conference: Ed Miliband pledges to freeze gas and electricity bills if he wins 2015 election

Typical household would save £120 and an average business £1,800 over the 20-month period

Labour would more than double the number of new homes being built to 200,000 a year

Labour Party Conference: Labour ‘will build 200,000 homes a year by 2020,’ says Ed Miliband

Miliband to target housing shortage and  energy companies in conference speech

Secret Nixon tapes reveal intimate chat with Brezhnev - including smoking tips

Secretly recorded conversations show then US president and Soviet leader chatting warmly before summit in 1973, about subjects including smoking and getting through an official dinner with jetlag

Germany challenges UK over legal basis of GCHQ mass monitoring of global internet traffic

Germany has directly challenged British ministers over GCHQ's reported programme of the mass monitoring of global phone and internet traffic.

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Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style