Last year David Cameron pledged his support to President Obama in confronting the Syrian regime. The pledge was wrecked by Ed Miliband, for narrow political advantage. Had action been taken a year ago, we wouldn't have heard of ISIL/ISIS and its latest incarnation, so-called IS.
The Home Secretary, Theresa Kitten Heels May, has announced that The Threat Level had been raised from "Casual insouciance" to "Run to the hills". On the five point gradation of fear, we are now at the second most terrifying, leaving only "Abandon all hope" to go.
The Assad regime supports IS, and is also responsible for the murder of thousands of civilians. Is it churlish to point out that it has also avoided punishment for chemical weapons attacks and other savageries and actions of calculated callousness?
Without wishing to get all psychoanalytical, there does seem to be a parallel between Cameron's reluctance to stand up and surf and his apparent inability to stand up as a respected world leader.
What we see today - the radicalisation of young British Muslims, the alienation and marginalisation from mainstream society and joining ISIL / Islamic State - has not happened overnight. It has been a slow and painful slide into the abyss.
Between 29 July 2013 and 28 July 2014 MPs spent an astonishing 115+ days sending Tweets, posting a total of 426,406 original Tweets and re-Tweeting a further 292,025. That's without adding up the time that the 461 MPs on Twitter will have spent browsing the site. The question is whether this is a good or bad spend of our elected representatives' time?
When people steal from the state through benefit fraud (usually out of desperation), there's public outcry. But when the state steals from the people by failing to provide even a basic standard of living, whilst corruption and tax evasion runs unchecked, we're told it's all part of a necessary strategy for economic recovery.
The number of political prisoners in Burma has more than doubled since the start of 2014, according to figures from the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners Burma.
Britain faces huge challenges to compete in a world being transformed by the pace of technological change and the rapid rise of emerging economies, which whilst intensifying competition are also creating huge new markets and new opportunities. The government is failing to meet these challenges and to tackle the cost-of-living crisis and ease the burden on households. After four years of Conservative-led government, wages after inflation are on average £1,600 a year lower than in 2010.
As a music video director, I'm accutely aware that there are currently no age ratings and that videos can be seen by almost anyone anywhere in the world. I have a lot of respect for directors like the Daniels who produce smart, funny videos that push boundaries but still cater for a general audience.
Usually nothing David Cameron says affects the music industry. This week he's shaken the whole UK scene up by announcing that from October, music videos will go through the same classification system as films and other video content, in an attempt to give parents more information to protect children from "graphic content".
Psychological abuse and coercive control are just as damaging as physical abuse and even though our laws don't yet reflect this, they now have a chance to catch up to the common morality. Moreover, our government is now aware of the fact that our laws are leaving victims of a domestic violence vulnerable at the hands of their abusers.
A "very kind, generous and public-spirited gesture". That's how George Osborne acknowledged one pensioner's decision to pay back their Winter Fuel Payment. The benefit, worth between £100 and £300, is paid to around 12 million pensioners each year to help them meet the cost of heating their homes over the winter months.
Summer 2014 has been for me a succession of attempts to overcome my fear of heights, ably assisted by my kind, patient 13-year-old son. It has also been the UK's most fabulous staycation summer for years, and I don't blame David Cameron for taking a late break under such inviting English skies.
The charges against David Cameron over his Iraq policy are well founded. But there are extenuating circumstances... It is time for a root-and-branch review of the principles of British foreign policy, so that they reflect two essential things: the world as it is and not as we would wish it to be; and the British national interest. Or, to put it another way, don't do nation-building and don't intervene in other people's civil wars - we usually make things worse, as in Iraq, and the waste of blood and treasure is unforgivable. If this means hobnobbing with dictators, so be it. Only genocide and threats to world order merit military intervention, as with IS.
Baroness Boothroyd spoke out after it was revealed that the current Speaker wants inexperienced Australian Carol Mills to be his £200,000 a year Commons Clerk, despite little obvious affinity for the job.