Voices

These letters appear in the Monday 14th October edition of the Independent

Terence Blacker: Less opinion, more debate, please

Open-mindedness has become confused with indecisiveness

Was it the snail porridge? Diners' mystery illness forces Fat Duck to close

One of Britain's most famous restaurants has closed its doors after up to 40 diners fell ill after eating there, it emerged yesterday.

The morning Gordon made David choke on his porridge

The Tory leader's getting angry and he's turning up the volume – lambasting the Prime Minister as a headless chicken and the House of Lords for its toxic cocktail of money and politics

First banks, now a £20bn bailout for businesses

Mandelson acts to rescue viable small companies starved of credit

A gruelling meal for hard times

Tourists got a taste of the workhouse today as free gruel was ladled out in the courtyard of the Royal Academy.

IoS Christmas Appeal: In Zimbabwe, porridge once a day makes you a lucky girl

At an early childhood centre children play, learn and, most importantly, eat. But for many, this will be their only meal

A mannequin on a toilet and dry porridge – it's the Turner Prize

The Turner Prize, the annual award for artists that never ceases to raise furious debate on what constitutes art and what should be dismissed as nonsense, yesterday proved it was not about to change the habit of a lifetime.

Gruel all round as the Victorian workhouse diet makes a comeback

Rising food bills bring renewed interest in virtues of frugality

Christina Patterson: I'm depressed by all this happy talk

"If you don't have anything cheerful to say," said my father, "then don't say anything at all." That, frankly, was a bit of a tall order. Of course I didn't have anything cheerful to say. I was a teenager, for God's sake. With the advent of spots, and a truly dreadful haircut, my state of mind had switched from relatively sunny to gloweringly unhappy. I didn't follow my father's dictum, of course. I believed in freedom of speech. The freedom to make everyone else as miserable as I felt.

Cranachan with raspberries

Serves 4

The Sketch: He demonstrated the strength of ten lunatics

They are amazing, in their way. Admirable, even. The sheer intestinal fortitude it must take to appear in public after all that international humiliation. And then to come back and be humiliated at home. How to go through all that humiliation without being humbled! What a package of qualities you need for public life at this highest level. Of course, lunacy helps and, yesterday, Gordon Brown displayed the strength of 10 lunatics. It is his greatest asset.

Brian Wilde: Foggy in 'Last of the Summer Wine'

In the long-running, gentle sitcom Last of the Summer Wine, Brian Wilde established himself as the best-loved "third man" among the ageing trio of eccentrics who whiled away the hours in the Yorkshire Pennines by recalling memories past, mulling over the trials and tribulations of the present, and – despite their years – making plans for the future. He had two spells with the BBC programme written by Roy Clarke, which did much for tourism in the West Yorkshire village of Holmfirth.

The Sketch: Babyface too easily rattled on spending and child poverty

The Chancellor's answers on Today roused pity and terror. The week before he'd been "safe". Now his answers sound like a senile man masticating porridge. That is, he sounds like the porridge, not the man. Formless, pointless, virtually without content, certainly meaningless.

Retro delights: Man About the House

Man About the House stands somewhere between genius and drivel when it comes to Seventies British sitcom but Brian Viner thinks that in many ways it may have been the most successful show

Rise and shine: Mark Hix serves-up his hearty breakfast recipes

Make a good first impression by using the finest seasonal and regional produce
News
Jennifer Lawrence was among the stars allegedly hacked
peopleActress and 100 others on 'master list' after massive hack
Sport
Radamel Falcao
footballManchester United agree loan deal for Monaco striker Falcao
Sport
Louis van Gaal, Radamel Falcao, Arturo Vidal, Mats Hummels and Javier Hernandez
footballFalcao, Hernandez, Welbeck and every deal live as it happens
Voices
A man shoots at targets depicting a portrait of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in a shooting range in the center of the western Ukrainian city of Lviv
voicesIt's cowardice to pretend this is anything other than an invasion
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Arts and Entertainment
booksNovelist takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Arts and Entertainment
The eyes have it: Kate Bush
music
News
Fifi Trixibelle Geldof with her mother, Paula Yates, in 1985
people
News
i100
Career Services

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Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
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Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor