Privacy loss

pandora's box

Share
Related Topics
Privacy loss

THE OMENS are not good for President Bill Clinton after Sunday night's debate at the Hay Literary Festival. Robert Bennett, Clinton's silver- tongued American lawyer in the Zippergate investigations, was teamed with the brilliant Stephen Fry and writer Adam Gopnik from The New Yorker to argue for the motion: "The private life of a public figure should remain private."

Opposed were former Times editor Simon Jenkins, investigative journalist Tom Bower (currently finishing his book on Mohamed Al Fayed) and authoress Gita Sereny, who wrote the recent controversial study of Mary Bell.

In the end, the Bennett/Fry/Gopnik team lost by an overwhelming margin, despite winner Sereny having received boos at one point. This came after Bennett's rather wan argument that "Privacy is the most valued aspect of any civilized society."

Oh well, at least Bennett gave Welsh tourism a modest boost, saying: "I'm very glad to be here in Hay, otherwise I might have to be in Little Rock" - the appalling capital of Clinton's home state Arkansas.

Comrade's call

THIS GOVERNMENT'S iron pager discipline may have succeeded in marginalising the influence of most left-wing MPs in the chamber, but New Labour is still not taking its dominance for granted.

When word passed round recently that Tony Benn was scheduled for a tour of the party's Millbank Tower headquarters, it sparked some frenetic spring cleaning.

Suddenly, the desks piled high with paper in Labour's engine room were cleared of any signs of rightist revisionism and the computer screens refreshed with innocuous images to welcome working-class hero Benn on his walkabout.

Planetary blues

DIRECTOR Terry Gilliam was in a mellow mood in the Groucho Club on Thursday evening. Just back from the Cannes screening of his latest film, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, the ex-Python was unruffled by the shocked reaction to some of his "gonzo" drug scenes from an audience that had included a large number of bourgeois French and politically correct Americans. The film doesn't romanticise drugs, Gilliam pointed out to Pandora, but shows "what happens when you take a large quantity of powerful drugs

He had made the journey into Soho from his Highgate home to attend a very private concert at Planet Hollywood. The big draw was Bruce Willis (whom Gilliam directed in Twelve Monkeys) and his rock band.

Pandora hears that Willis's yawn-inducing gig was so "exclusive" that Gilliam was one of the few genuine British celebrities to bother attending, along with Elizabeth Murdoch, the lovely friend of Matthew Freud, who does PR for the themed burger restaurant.

Rose is a rose

THE MOST POIGNANT Viagra story to date should have a pleasing side- effect on one part of the population.

When 70-year-old American millionaire Frank Bernardo left his common- law-wife, Roberta Burke, 61, the day after Viagra enabled him to make love for the first time in four years, he didn't go for a nubile young bimbo, he flew into the arms of an older woman. Her name is Rose Garafola, 65, of Edison, New Jersey.

Though Rose is reportedly having second thoughts about the media attention, all ladies of a certain age should take heart and recall those Viagra- evocative lines from Shakespeare's first sonnet: "From fairest creatures we desire increase,/ That thereby beauty's rose might never die."

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Home Care / Support Workers

£7 - £10 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This care provider is looking for Home ...

Recruitment Genius: Web Team Leader

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's leading web des...

Recruitment Genius: Client Manager

£27000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A growing, successful, friendly...

Recruitment Genius: Property Negotiator - OTE £20,000+

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This family owned, independent ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Separate lives: Boston’s streets illustrate the divide between the town’s communities  

Migrants have far more to offer than hard work and wealth creation, yet too many exist in isolation from the rest of society

Emily Dugan
Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird has sold 40 million copies  

Go Set a Watchman: Harper Lee’s new novel is more than just a literary event

Joseph Charlton
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate