Nick Clegg was in a relaxed and welcoming mood as he greeted guests at Admiralty House in the heart of London's Westminster parliamentary precinct.
Rather than placing responsibility on the athletes, it might be more effective for the sponsors of the 2014 games to pull out of their lucrative deals with the IOC. According to the official Olympics website, commercial partnerships generally contribute up to 40% of Olympic revenue. If the corporations that sponsor the Olympics revoked their support then the IOC will take note.
It's that time of year again; Edinburgh is ablaze with art, theatre, and music from around the world. For the month of August, Edinburgh is the culture capital of the world, as thousands of musicians, street-performers, actors, comedians, authors, and artists demonstrate their art at various venues across the city.
Did we call for Delhi to be stripped of the Commonwealth Games because of the rising number of acid attacks in India? Do we refuse to play Pakistan in cricket because of honour killings? China hosted the Olympics despite having at best a chequered human rights record. The truth is that sporting boycotts and bans do not work.
While Sochi 2014 is the immediate concern it is simply the latest charade in an ever growing list of erroneous decisions by sporting committees where the human rights record, inherent poverty and endemic discrimination of a nation have been flagrantly ignored.
Riding the roomba of news in a shark costume. The Doctor will see us now. And in quite some style too, with Zoe Ball presenting a half hour long "get...
An absolute ban on the Russian Winter Olympics of 2014 in Sochi is simply essential. Stage them elsewhere in Utah, Lillehammer, anywhere you like. At all costs Putin cannot be seen to have the approval of the civilised world. He is making scapegoats of gay people, just as Hitler did Jews. He cannot be allowed to get away with it. I know whereof I speak. I have visited Russia, stood up to the political deputy who introduced the first of these laws, in his city of St Petersburg. I looked into the face of the man and, on camera, tried to reason with him, counter him, make him understand what he was doing.
Everybody thinks I have this hilarious, exciting life... Hang on a minute... I do! Suicide made sure of that. Long gone are the days when I used to indulge it, sat in a dark room, listening to The Smiths. I forced myself to confront it. I wasn't going to let it get the better of me anymore.
So, I was sitting at my desk at home the other day trying to think of something new and exciting that nobody has done before. I picked up a blunt HB pencil and started twiddling it, then shelled a few pistachio nuts and tossed the shells in a bowl of other pistachio shells. At this point the imaginary light-bulb above my head...
"Only the lonely, know the way I feel," Roy Orbison sang in his 1960 hit single. More than 50 years have now passed and during that time many who hav...
In many respects, living with anxiety and depression is almost like carefully managing a simple fact of acceptance. Sometimes adjoined with depression, sometimes without, it is hard to live a life that is so inconsistent. To wake up in the morning, stir yourself from sleep and spend the next ten minutes testing the mind for signs that it may not be a good day.
Understanding that there is no conscious reason for these feelings puts mental illness on a par with other illnesses. You wouldn't ask a woman with breast cancer why she had it, or why she was ill - saying "I have breast cancer" is a pretty satisfactory argument for most. Mental illness isn't any different, and it's just as much of a scary, alien thing to sufferers than other illnesses.
Stephen Fry is in the news today after he talks in an interview about a suicide attempt last year. He said: "Now, you may say, how can anyone who has got it all be so stupid as to want to end it all? That's the point, there is no 'why?', it's not the right question. There's no reason." So, how can you start the conversation if you are worried about someone?
Stephen Fry is extremely successful in many different areas of life; a 'national treasure'. How can someone popular, wealthy, busy and successful, end up feeling hopeless and despairing? Yet it's well established from psychological research that there is a link between fame and suicide.
Illuminations have joined dramatic forces with Touch Press and Faber & Faber to produce a DVD of Shakespeare's Sonnets.
Blackadder teaches us a great deal, not necessarily about British history but more about the English class system and the attitudes of Englishmen on its different rungs, in particular towards each other.