Lord's

Change is generally unwelcome in the House of Lords, and when it does happen, it moves slower than cold treacle. I welcome the Burns Report, on how to reduce the size of the second chamber, from about 850 to 600. I say 'about' as it's hard to pin down the exact figure as peers retire or die at random and the government keeps packing more in regardless.
So this is your chance to influence the Lords' future. After thousands signed the Mirror's petition in 2015 calling for an end to an unelected upper chamber, we hope you'll use this opportunity so that we can move towards the kind of Parliament that voters expect and deserve.
If the government cares about fulfilling the will of the British people, and having a genuinely decent and well-functioning scrutinising chamber, It's time for a fairly elected upper house.
PMQs today made it pretty clear: Corbyn is starting to employ that headmaster stare. Today, it went from a rather stern warning look to a full-on, narrow-eyed, flashing-gazed glare at the Tory front bench who promptly erupted from muffled laughter to full-on cheers, accompanied by the classic chanting of "Ooooh", which reminded me all too strongly of schooldays seated in front of a well-intentioned but sadly incompetent supply teacher.
I write this because I am scared we are forgetting our humanity. Last night, someone called me asking for my support as they were being admitted to hospital. I did not think I should stay in bed and protect my assets.
Before you crack out the jokes ('into the sea', 'as far away as possible' etc. etc.) it's a serious question. Westminster could soon be going through a renovation programme that could last up to 40 years and cost more than £7billion. That's a long time and a lot of money.
The Sun has issued a rare apology over a story claiming former England batsman Kevin Pietersen had returned his 100th Test
Soft power can influence others to want the same things as the UK "by building positive international relationships and coalitions which defend our interests and security, uphold our national reputation and promote our trade and prosperity." The report also says it should be carefully combined with hard power, essentially military force, to form "smart power."
The five things you need to know on Tuesday 17 December 2013... 1) DO HALF OF ALL PEERS 'CLOCK IN' AND 'CLOCK OUT'? A superb
The British Heart Foundation and a host of charities and organisations, concerned about the health implications of smoking, want to see cigarettes across the UK wrapped in standardised packs as soon as possible. And the British Heart Foundation's new poll reveals eight in 10 teenagers agree.