TTIP is a big issue for politicians, business, unions and the rest of society. The secrecy which pervades the negotiations has kept it out of public debate for too long... That's why the TUC's Congress this September called for the negotiations to be halted. A good deal could be done, but not by starting from here.
Excitement really has started to kick on apprenticeships lately and it's starting to look encouraging - we might even get it onto the election agenda as a policy!
Whatever happened to Help to Buy? Ministers seldom mention the government's two-part mortgage guarantee and equity loan scheme these days, yet it was initially heralded by the chancellor and the prime minister as a major Coalition policy... The reason is that the scheme has fallen rather flat.
This is the statement George Osborne would not want you to see because it makes clear that subsidies, allowances and reliefs extend right across the UK economy. And they do not, by any means, appear to go to those who necessarily need them most. The view he has presented on this issue has been partial, to say the least, and frankly deeply misleading at best.
NHS workers in England - including those at the top of the pay band- will be on the same rate of pay in April 2016 as they were on in April 2013... As unions, we have deliberately tried to take action that would minimise the impact on patients by only having a four- hour stoppage. Yet the underlying message we are getting from the Government's refusal to negotiate a settlement is that when, and until, it impacts on patients they won't take it seriously. So where does this leave us? Do they want us to escalate the action and cause real harm or will they talk to us about a reasonable settlement?
What is sure is that all the best plans start with a clear vision. If our prospectus achieves nothing else, then we hope that inspires others to pursue ideas that will define a new generation. We cannot go back in time to correct historical under-investment, but we can make plans for a future where once again the North will flourish.
UK Music is launching an Internship Code of Practice because we are committed to helping skilled and dedicated young people find a job in a music business. We also want to ensure a fairer workplace for budding music industry professionals. Offering paid internships is one way to ensure those entering the industry have an equal chance of developing their skills irrespective of their circumstance.
The NHS Reinstatement Bill does what it says on the tin. This is the Bill for a truly publicly-provided healthcare service. I hope the shadow secretary of state for health will follow its logic. Our principles for reform should not be shaped by who privatised the NHS but by how it was privatised and where the dangers still lie.
What is it about the senior entrepreneur that is so oxymoronic? Surely an older person is the most likely candidate to invent bifocals. I doubt that many 20-somethings (today as much as in the 18th century) have ever stopped to consider the greatness of a lens with two distinct optical powers.
HS2, Crossrail, Thameslink and the much-needed expansion of the UK's airport capacity. These are all projects which promise to transform our infrastructure landscape and drive a competitive, healthy and resilient UK economy for the future.
Something's happening. But our political elite haven't quite grasped it yet. The SNP surge, the rise of UKIP and the Greens, calls for devolution for English cities and a luvvie-wuvvie-lution from Russell Brand have left the established Westminster parties confused. How can they respond to such diverse social critiques? It's difficult to fight off attacks from all angles...
It is a national scandal that over half of the families living in poverty in the UK are now working households, and if the Government wanted to tackle the problem of in-work poverty they would legislate to put an end to such exploitative employment practices.
Here's a wild thought: Could Bob Geldof turn out to become one of Africa's worst enemies despite his original masterstroke of giving a platform to ageing rockers, publicity-hungry pop stars and dubious has-been singers to help promote their all-conquering charitable efforts?
The trouble with Posh Pawn (Channel 4, Wednesdays at 8pm) is that you keep wishing someone hadn't tried to be quite so clever-clever with the title.
When Nichola Pinder had her baby daughter Jasmine in 2012 she struggled to lift her out of her cot. She had battled back problems over the years and was diagnosed with reactive arthritis after Jasmine's birth. Not only was lifting her daughter excruciatingly painful, but Nichola was afraid the activity would make her disabilities worse...
Despite the political rhetoric, if current economic policies continue broadly as they are, the UK economy does not have a bright future. In my view, and that of many others, our economy has at least five big problems. These major challenges will end the current upturn probably shortly after the 2015 general election, no matter who wins.