The prime minister will shortly begin the process of compiling his shopping list for EU reform. There is little doubt that EU migration will be at or near the top... It will take nerves of steel to walk the EU tightrope of asking concessions from the very countries whose citizens he wants to discourage from working in the UK.
Britain's National Health Service was built upon the firmly held conviction that good healthcare should be available to everyone in society - that it should be based on clinical need rather than one's ability to pay hefty sums of money upfront. Well, apparently that's no longer the case.
This is not the nicest of days, so in that context I thought I'd present a few random political thoughts! Very briefly, at Westminster it was one where the Conservative Party publically re-embraced Thatcherism, where One Nation Labour struggled to emerge further yet held on for life, and the United Kingdom Independence Party continued its long march to significance...
Yesterday, Abbas Khan's funeral was attended by thousands of Muslims, uniting as one to celebrate his life and in solidarity with the family. Gathering together in such a large number shows what a profound effect his death has had on the community...
I have this week written to the Prime Minister, David Cameron, urging a new inquiry into the death of the scientist Alan Turing, who has been finally granted a royal pardon for his 1952 conviction for homosexual relations. Turing is generally believed to have been committed suicide following his conviction and chemical castration. However, the original inquest into his death was perfunctory and inadequate. A new inquiry is long overdue, even if only to dispel any doubts about the true cause of his death - including speculation that he was murdered by the security services.
Time will tell if Cameron's tough talk will enable him to reach his personal goals both at home and abroad, though he is playing a dangerous game. At home, this episode might serve to radically shift the social thinking and ethos of British society vis-à-vis Europe, eventually leading to an EU exit which even most Tories still do not want.
I don't believe that if, in 2005, we had known the extent of migration from the previous Accession countries and the scale of the recession that would hit us, we would have agreed to the restrictions being lifted now... Even at this very late stage, I urge the government to keep the restrictions on Romanian and Bulgarian migration for a further five years - I can see no other solution.
David Cameron's Christmas card shows that the man truly has his finger on the weakening pulse of the nation. Not a Christmas tree, baby Jesus or Santa in sight: 'It's not very festive,' tutted The Guardian... How wrong is that?
At the beginning of this year, with the UK economy stuck in stagnation and seemingly no end in sight to the Coalition government's controversial austerity programme, the chances of a Conservative majority after the 2015 general election looked slim. Fast forward, and a fundamentally altered story emerges.
Yes, as the UK government's paper so aptly calls it 'Basically...Porn is Everywhere'. Pornography is about sex and nudity which, whether you like it or not, is a fundamental part of our being. It is also regulated and legal in the UK (that's another issue). So when it comes to protecting our children's welfare we need to address the issue of pornography in an adult way.
If Obama, Cameron and Thorning -Schmidt were inspired to whip out their camera phones and start clicking away then why wasn't Naomi Campbell somewhere in that stadium, in full hair and make up, being held aloft in front of a wind machine by Bono and Charlize Theron?
The Mayor is missing the point, thinking that the issue on London's streets is all about cycling... London is in grave danger of becoming famous not for finance, art, culture and cycling, but rather for road death and injury. We need a radical re-assessment of the purpose of our streets.
John Key refuses to even discuss with the media his stance on apartheid at the time of Mandela's imprisonment. Key, of the conservative National Party, will be attending the funeral as the leader of the NZ delegation. Yet Key is irritated by the fact that media continues to ask him about the issue.
Politicians and journalists are falling over themselves to pay tribute to Nelson Mandela. Alas, the curse of having a good memory means recalling when the same politicians and journalists condemned the ANC leader as a terrorist.
It will not be an easy journey, it will be an extremely rocky road with very hard decisions having to be made and at times it may seem impossible but, in the words of the late and great Nelson Mandela, an inspiration to many, including me, "Everything seems impossible until it is done".
Cameron's trip to China and his pledge that Britain will be China's "biggest advocate in the West", are bad politics, bad ethics and exceptionally bad foreign policy.