After ten years of non-smoking policy in New York the bars have more visitors now, because the vast majority turned out to prefer a healthier environment.
Breathing polluted air has become second only to smoking in the health damage it causes... A recent government scientific report revealed that UK air pollution causes 29,000 deaths and contributes to over 200,000 premature deaths per year.
Government initiatives launched to much fanfare, did little to benefit small businesses. The banks ignored the cries of all around them to do what they are supposed to do, lend, preferring to stick their fingers tightly in their ears and warble "la la la" instead.
Were Cameron to commit to a referendum he would unleash years of uncertainty about Britain’s future place in the world. And that could undermine the very reassurance, and reputation for moderation, that will be central to the Tories’ prospects of victory in 2015.
As a macroeconomist I foresee a continuation of the economic downturn and perhaps even destruction of the eurozone over the coming years.
We hear less of vampires these days. The new creature dominating the scene is the zombie. The banking crisis has left economies that are "zombified", living dead, only kept "alive" by the injection of the life-blood of credit by central banks.
The European Parliament is limbering up for what promises to be an exciting but challenging year. The crisis continues to rumble on, but efforts to put Europe back on the path to growth will not be the only initiative to make a difference to your daily life.
There is a sense of abandon, when walking in downtown Athens today. Open drug use within a view of the nation's parliament, an alarming surge in HIV infections and a total collapse of the health system and all safety nets are signs of a society that its priorities are out of balance.
The EU needs to be brought closer to its citizens. Introducing a basic understanding of its workings in the National Curriculum could bridge the gap between a media-directed view and an actual understanding.
We need to re-think how we view property. So here's a thought for 2013 - why don't we stop focusing on capital growth and see property instead as a potential income generator?
Many leaders of the EU are driven by an intense ideological mission and do not play with a straight bat, so we should think very carefully about their motives and about surrendering our ability to challenge them.
Too often Ukip's political enemies and those in the media take swipes at us by branding us racist and homophobic and for having ill-thought out and un-costed policies. It is understandable when you are a threat to the established, cosy tripartite system at Westminster.
Financial reward is the mechanism that creates work in the free market. By taking the incentive for working and developing new skills away, it undermines the fundamental functioning of the free market.
According to new data published by the Office for National Statistics in the United Kingdom National Accounts The Blue Book, 2011, history has changed from their own previous publications.
Many of the risks in the year ahead could be the result of what might be characterised as drift. A lack of leadership and political will that leaves nations and regions without a clear strategy to solve serious long-term challenges. And in the sense of drifting apart through a divergence of interests over time.
David Cameron got an apparent boost for the 'cake and eat it' approach to Europe last week, when finance ministers of the European Union (EU) agreed on the terms of an embryonic Eurozone Banking Union.