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

Dubya: The surreal afterlife of an ex-President

What has the most unpopular US President of all time been doing during his first year of retirement? Telling bad jokes – and defending his reputation, discovers Alex Hannaford in Texas

Archie Brown: It was events in Moscow in 1988 that led to the revolution of 1989

The growing freedom within the Soviet Union did much to raise expectations throughout eastern Europe, but the change in Soviet foreign policy was, however, the ultimate facilitator of all that happened in 1989.

We'll drink to that: pubs hail the return of real ale

Ailing brewers raise a glass as cask beer sales rise for first time since 1982

Challenger for California first voted at age of 46, critics reveal

The last time California chose a new governor, a famous film star and former Austrian bodybuilder stunned the world by turning up on late-night television to announce he was putting himself up for election.

Driving Like Crazy, By P J O'Rourke

Diatribes that don't find top gear

Robert Fisk: Mangling everything in its path, Typhoon Sarah blows in to Asia

Our writer is there to witness the carnage as Alaska's former mom-in-chief touches down in Hong Kong

Jody Powell: Trusted press secretary who accompanied Jimmy Carter from Georgia to the White House

Jody Powell's association with the man he would serve as President began like a B-movie cliché, in a shopping centre in southern Georgia in 1966. "Hi," said the beaming figure with the toothy grin, thrusting a hand in his direction, "I'm Jimmy Carter and I'm running for governor." The young student was quickly smitten, the voters of Georgia unfortunately less so. Carter was defeated that year. But he won the governorship in 1970, and with Powell at his side went on to complete one of the most extraordinary political ascents in modern US history.

John Rentoul: 'If it moves, tax it': the back story

Next on the Catch-Up Service, a half-familiar quotation from Irwin Stelzer in an article in The Daily Telegraph, 12 August. He attributes it to Ronald Reagan, describing the attitude of previous governments towards the economy:

Cory Aquino: President of the Philippines who brought democracy to the islands

When Cory Aquino stepped down after six years as the first woman president of the Philippines, she was widely viewed as having made little impact on her country's deep-rooted social and economic problems.

Designer for the stars

Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Bill Clinton wear LA tailor Amir's suits. Guy Adams meets a lover of luxury with friends in high places

Is the party over for the Republicans?

The White House is lost, scandal is rife and a certain lady in Alaska has resigned her governorship. The Republican Party is, by any measure, a mess. Can it bounce back? Only if it radically alters its political leanings, suggests the Independent's chief US commentator, Rupert Cornwell

Chilling emails reveal hate of racist who shot museum guard

FBI and anti-extremist organisation had monitored alleged gunman since 1981

Andy Martin: In love with our inner Terminator

We can't wait for global warming to kill us off. We want apocalypse now

Nancy Reagan: I still see Ronnie in my bedroom

If Nancy Reagan was offended when Barack Obama made a quip about her performing séances with the dead, she apparently got over it quickly, even offering his wife, Michelle, advice on the phone afterwards on how to ratchet up the social diary at the White House.

Petrov's Dilemma, Radio 4<br>R.E.S.P.E.C.T &ndash; The Art of Backing Vocals, Radio 4

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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before