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Westminster Outlook Michael Fallon is Westminster's – and the world's – first land-dwelling, four-limbed octopus, his tentacles wrapped around Whitehall, circular suckers incapable of being removed from powerful ministries of state.

MP quits aide role over mail privatisation plan

A ministerial aide quit today in protest at Government plans to partly privatise the Royal Mail.

The Lord who put the bounce into Brown

Lord Mandelson says his new role at Gordon Brown's side is to make the Brownites and Blairites laugh together again. Others insist the 'Prince of Darkness' is no jester, but really the new Deputy Prime Minister, reports Andrew Grice

Mandelson denies suggesting joining euro

The Business Secretary Peter Mandelson today denied that he was responsible for suggestions that the Government could consider taking Britain into the euro in the face of the economic downturn.

Mandelson warned not to backtrack on flexibility rights

Peter Mandelson has been warned not to back down from giving flexible working rights to millions of working parents by the woman who came up with the Government's plan to extend the scheme.

Mandelson urges Obama to resist US protectionists

The Business Secretary Peter Mandelson last night urged Barack Obama not to retreat into trade isolation and protectionism.

Brussels rules out Mandelson investigation

The European Commission today attempted to draw a line under the growing clamour for full disclosure about Peter Mandelson's official contacts during his four years as the EU's Trade Commissioner.

Mandelson admits he met tycoon two years earlier

Peter Mandelson faced renewed calls to detail all his meetings with Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska today after admitting their contact went back two years further than previously publicly stated.

Voters lose confidence in Osborne after row

Fewer than one in six voters believes George Osborne has the judgement necessary to handle the economy, according to a new poll underlining the fallout from claims that the shadow Chancellor was involved in discussions about a donation from a Russian billionaire. Nearly one in three people questioned said Mr Osborne should resign from the Tory front bench, according to a ComRes poll conducted for the BBC in the wake of the affair.

Leading article: Instant return

Now we see what Britain has been missing these past four long years. Peter Mandelson only rejoined the domestic political fray 20 days ago and look at what splendid drama he has already delivered for us: betrayed confidences, broken friendships and a good old-fashioned political scandal. And what a luxurious backdrop: a sun-kissed Greek island, the yacht of a Russian oligarch, the villa of a Rothschild. It sounds more like a James Bond film than a Westminster bun fight.

Julian Clary: My advice to Lord Mandy? Flaunt it, sister

Lots of people are having a go at Peter Mandelson these days. He's too "silent" say some, meaningfully. His lips are too thin, declare others. He walks with clenched buttocks, accuses someone called Quentin Letts, whose own buttocks flap manfully in the breeze, no doubt. Poor Peter might be forgiven for thinking he'd entered Mr Gay UK, rather than the political arena.

David Randall: Tally ho! Why has the press pack got it in for Peter Mandelson

The hunt is on, the press pack is in full cry, and the columnists won't be happy until they draw blood. But what is it about Peter Mandelson that attracts such bile?

Mandelson defended over billionaire claims

The European Commission's most senior trade official has defended Peter Mandelson over claims of a conflict of interest during his time in Brussels as Trade Commissioner.

Matthew Norman: Welcome home Lord Mandy

It might be Awakenings, with Gordon reviving the narcoleptics

I'm a practical moderniser, says Cameron

The needs of society must come first, Tory leader tells Woodstock Literary Festival

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/openhouse/2008/10/gordon-on-the-c.html">Ed Howker: Gordon on the couch</a>

According to psychologist Lucy Beresford, Gordon Brown is 'deeply insecure' and bringing Peter Mandelson back was "Freudian" bordering on "self-mutilating behaviour".

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John Moore inspired this Coca Cola Christmas advert
people

John Moore starred in Coca Cola and Morrisons adverts

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Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy

Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films
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New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning

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Mike Tyson has led an appalling and sad life, but are we not a country that gives second chances?
people

Former boxer recalls incident when he was seven years old

Sport
A Rutherford Raiders shirt with the PornHub sponsorship
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Arts and Entertainment
Charlie Sheen said he would
tv

Charlie Sheen could be set to revive his role as a hedonistic womaniser

Life and Style
Jamie Oliver’s version of Jollof rice led thousands of people to post angry comments on his website
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Apple CEO Timothy Cook
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The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes