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Page last updated at 07:35 GMT, Monday, 15 November 2010
Today: Monday 15th November

The government's plan to hold a referendum next May on changing the voting system could be blown off course by a vote today in the House of Lords. Alaska governor, vice presidential candidate and now reality TV star - the latest twist in the story of Sarah Palin.

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Business news with Pauline McCole: Economist Dr Gerard Lyons analyses a recent report predicting that our society is in the midst of an economic super-cycle of high growth. Lord Mayor of the City of London Michael Bear talks about his new role as global ambassador for the whole UK-based financial services industry.

An estimated 100,000 British Muslims are in Mecca today for the official start of the annual pilgrimage known as the Hajj. Robert Pigott reports on how some Muslims are becoming increasing distressed at their failure to perform this sacred duty due to the increasing cost of the Hajj.

A leading centre-right think tank has proposed to sell state-owned assets such as leisure centres, swimming pools and even schools and hospitals. Philip Blond, of the think-tank ResPublica, and Mehdi Hasan, of the New Statesman, discuss this recent move in privatisation.

Ireland is coming under intense pressure to accept an EU financial bail-out. Europe editor Gavin Hewitt analyses Ireland's economic situation.

Organised criminal gangs are tricking internet users into buying and downloading fake anti-virus protection. Tony Neate of Get Safe Online assesses fraudulent internet security offers.

Business news with Pauline McCole.

The charity Teach First is reporting success with its scheme of taking graduates with good degrees from top universities, giving them a crash course in teaching and putting them to work in struggling schools for two years. Reporter Sanchia Berg spent a day with a new Teach First teacher in an academy in West London.

Washington's new proposal for reviving talks in the Middle East rests on a plan for Israel and Palestine to sketch a border between the countries in three months. Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen examines the new proposal.

Sports news with Rob Bonnet.

The government is planning radical change to the way the NHS works in England. Sarah Montague went to East Anglia where one of the first GP commissioning groups has been set up to see how the new system might work.

Paper review.

Sarah Palin debuted as a reality TV star last night. Tim Goodman of the Hollywood Reporter assesses the career prospects for the former Alaska governor.

Thought for the day with Reverend Dr David Wilkinson, Principal of St John's College at Durham University.

A British couple held for more than a year by Somali pirates have been freed after 388 days in captivity. Expert in Somali piracy Roger Middleton and former hostage Terry Waite discuss the release of Paul and Rachel Chandler.

The government's plan to hold a referendum next May on changing the voting system could be blown off course by a vote today in the House of Lords. Former Labour Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer and Justice Minister Lord McNally discuss the passage of the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill.

Are the banks taking real steps to reduce the bonus payments they will announce early in the new year? Business editor Robert Peston analyses the prospects of a smaller bonus settlement.

How has the music industry changed over the past two decades? Reporter Nicola Stanbridge spoke to the singer and songwriter Damon Albarn about the post-X Factor future.

Sport news with Rob Bonnet.

Iraqi Christians exiled in Europe have been protesting in Brussels, following a string of violent attacks against the community in Iraq. Baghdad correspondent Jim Muir outlines the latest attacks in the country. Bishop William Kenny, Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham, analyses whether Iraqi Christians should be granted political asylum in the UK.

Will Ireland be forced to accept EU's financial bail out? Evan Davis analyses the country's economic situation.

Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has given her first broadcast interview since her release. The BBC's John Simpson reports on her call for a "peaceful revolution" in Burma.

Should future teachers be trained directly in schools rather than at universities? Education professor Alan Smithers and Christine Blower, of the National Union of Teachers, discuss the new scheme of putting graduates through an accelerated training programme and then straight into schools.

Is modern Britain nasty and cruel in comparison with the rest of Europe? Journalist Paola Totaro and playwright Alistair Beaton discuss the criticisms of British society by actress Helen Mirren, who says that Britain has lost its sense of decency.


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