The party of labour needs to put work at the centre of its welfare reforms

In raw political terms, the fact that voters hold Labour accountable by a margin of ten to one for the size of the benefits bill is about as about politically toxic as it gets.

Royal Mail sell-off to begin within weeks - but so will strikes

The Government came under fresh attack over its controversial plans for the Royal Mail as Business Secretary Vince Cable confirmed it will press ahead with privatising the service.

Under the proposals, patients will only be transferred to other wards if it is absolutely necessary

Welcome to the hospital of the future: New management structures, revolutionary medical training and a 'buck-stops-here' culture

A landmark report by the Royal College of Physicians in response to the NHS crisis has outlined 50 measures to modernise the service to cope with the demands of an ageing population, but critics question if there is the political will or money to make it a reality

No summer love-in for Ed Miliband as the union dinosaurs bite back

Inside Westminster: The dinosaurs want to preserve their ossified structures, and their power in the Labour Party

The General Secretary of Unite, Len McCluskey

David Cameron hits out at Unite strike guide

David Cameron’s campaign to paint Len McCluskey and the Unite union as Ed Miliband’s sinister puppet masters took a new turn today with the emergence of a leaked document containing hints on how to organise a strike.

The News Matrix: Wednesday 11 September 2013

Doctor to give boy 'electronic eyes'

Oddly pedagogic: Ed Miliband speaking in Bournemouth

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Miliband enters the lions den and gets away with it - just about

True, there was no standing ovation. The TUC doesn’t do ecstatic. But in a speech sandwiched between debates on low paid youth - enlivened by the fact that the speakers were mostly young workers on low pay - and on rail privatisation, Miliband repeated that he was “absolutely determined” to reform the way union members donate to Labour. And survived.

TUC conference: Unions back battle to save Royal Mail

TUC gives support to unions trying to save the Royal Mail from privatisation

Ed Miliband addresses the TUC

TUC conference: Ed Miliband blinks first in Labour's face-off with the unions

Labour leader lavishes praise in speech at TUC conference but opposition to his reforms expected to force rethink

Snapshot of British society in 2013: More tolerance, less trust for politicians and royals are getting more popular

We have lost faith in politicians and banks, but are far more willing to accept gay relationships, according to the Social Attitudes survey, which also reveals a renewed respect for the Royal Family, and the jobless

The News Matrix: Tuesday 10 September 2013

Protests could end plan for gold mining

Ed Miliband is expected to raise the stakes in his battle with the trade unions

Ed Miliband tells unions: Labour's funding reforms could create a Labour party of 500,000 members

The Labour leader will tell his union critics they are denying a ‘real voice’ to members

Harriet Harman will insist the Labour Party and the unions are 'fighting for the same things'

TUC Conference: Harriet Harman warns unions not to play into Tory hands over Labour reforms

Deputy leader to tell private dinner: 'We're fighting for the same things'

Frances O’Grady, the TUC general secretary, on Bournemouth Pier

Ed Miliband: Labour would tackle zero-hour contracts

Ed Miliband will vow that a Labour Government would outlaw the exploitative use of zero-hour contracts.

Sport
Club legend Paul Scholes is scared United could disappear into 'the wilderness'
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A model of a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Dordogne, France
science
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newsThat's Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome
Sport
Malky Mackay salutes the Cardiff fans after the 3-1 defeat at Liverpool on Sunday
footballFormer Cardiff boss accused of sending homophobic, racist and messages
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Rodgers showered praise on Balotelli last week, which led to speculation he could sign the AC Milan front man
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Life and Style
life – it's not, says Rachel McKinnon
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Arts and Entertainment
Arctic Monkeys headline this year's Reading and Leeds festivals, but there's a whole host of other bands to check out too
music(who aren't Arctic Monkeys)
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Lizards, such as Iguanas (pictured), have a unique pattern of tissue growth
science
Extras
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home