The election itself will inevitably focus on issues that matter most to voters - from jobs and housing to wages and welfare. But it is less well recognised that the election in 2015 will be determined primarily in our urban areas, and that the fortunes of each of the major political parties depend upon how they perform in, and help support, UK cities.
Earlier this month we saw a huge increase in votes for UKIP and people discussing the subject of immigration. Whether or not you agree with those votes, the simple fact is that millions voiced their concerns and to just ignore them and their opinions is nothing short of disrespectful. It is simply saying we hear you but we are not listening...
Even if the growth projections are true, this skirts over the fact that Britain is forecast to have a growing population at a time when other European nations (particularly Germany and Italy) are facing shrinkage. More people equals more money, the assumption goes. Demography is destiny, in other words, which is an adage best left to historians than journalists.
I am agreeable to politicians being paid £71k a year, it is a decent salary for a decent day's work, we should not cut corners here if we value real management leadership, or talent will go elsewhere and do something else - which it clearly is currently. What I am questioning is the quality of the fools taking the cash.
Godfrey Bloom, now formerly of the UKIP parish (the kind of parish you sense where people shake on the floor and preachers cure diabetes by staring at you) thanks to his use of the word "slut" in a public meeting, (though it was miraculous he survived Bongo Bongo Land) managed not so much a Brass Eye as a Brass Neck with Michael Crick...
After more than an hour of listening to Ed Miliband we now know the answer to the big question. Just what would he do if he became Prime Minister? Would he tackle the deficit with the iron discipline he's previously promised? Would he ensure Britain is well placed to win the global race? In short, no. But he will keep his shirt on whilst on holiday, so that's alright then.
According to Cameron the Tories back those workers while Labour are busy backing the shirkers. If that's really true then based on definitions and the PM's logic, Milliband is backing the Conservative Party and Cameron is far more Red than Ed for supporting the labourers. These are the people running the country remember?
Sixteen years after Mitterrand's death, the ghost of the first (and, before now, only) left-wing President of the Fifth Republic looms as large as ever. Over the past weeks, as once more the spectre of a Socialist in the Elysée has haunted Europe, commentators have dredged up the radical programme introduced by Mitterrand on his 1981 election.
Ed Miliband made a big mistake last week when he condemned the teachers going on strike. I know he thought he was being very clever. The Tories and right wing media would be demanding: do you support these strikes or are you willing to distance yourself and the Labour party from them? Will you condemn them as all right thinking people will? So Ed caught them out by attacking the strikes before anyone had asked him to