German chancellor Angela Merkel is being treated like political royalty, a consequence of her country's economic power as well as prime minister David Cameron's desperate need for friends in Europe. Few would argue about the position of Germany as the economic powerhouse of the European Union but what can Britain learn from the German economic model?
When religious leaders across the spectrum line up to say your policies have created a "national crisis" of hunger and poverty, when your government is forced to push out a long-delayed report that comprehensively debunks your already obviously weak explanation for the explosive growth of food banks, it really isn't a great idea to claim that your policies were driven by a "moral mission".
It would be fair to say that Alex Salmond, the SNP, and the YES campaign for Scottish independence have had better weeks than the one just past since launching the White Paper setting out their vision for an independent Scotland in November 2013.
Over the last five or six years, as poverty and hardship have deepened, unemployment soared and inequality increased across Europe, so has xenophobia festered - with the rise of far-right parties such as Golden Dawn in Greece, and uncomfortable parallels can be drawn between the current socio-economic climate and that of the 1930s, which paved the way for Hitler's rise to power.
In the light of George Osbourne's ruling out a currency union with Scotland should the SNP win a yes vote on 18 September, the SNP's plan to share the...
The UK Chancellor, George Osborne, said in the Conservative Party Conference in 2011 that we would deal with climate change and reduce emissions, but not faster or slower than other EU countries, saying that we will not save the world by putting our country out of business...
Mr Osborne's refusal to hammer out a currency union with the SNP is not an argument against independence, but rather a reason to vote in favour of it. That's because without a union, Scots will be free to establish their own monetary policy and maintain full control over their economy.
It is a short-sightedness and a lack of courage that has seen this u-turn in philosophy. Cameron and Osborne may be following traditional Conservative policies, but in doing so they are ignoring the long-term welfare of the nation. Investment in renewable energies is at risk of disappearing and our economy is moving ever closer to fossil fuel dependency.
Britain is on the brink of a disaster. The prices of food and fuel have been allowed to spiral out of control. Meanwhile, affordable accommodation is quickly dissipating - egged on by the coalition's dubious desire to slash cost-cutting holes in Britain's social safety net.
Many of us who are engineers, look to Germany and envy their engineering greatness. In Britain, we are quietly leading another type of engineering in Europe and after all, software engineering is the engineering of the future.
The type of politics that has been practised over the last four years is that of the smoke-and-mirrors variety; divert the public's attention to one over-inflated issue/persona while deflecting from what the core truth of the matter actually is...
After figures showed the UK economy returning to growth, a recalcitrant was quick to presume vindication of his economic strategy, and he hasn't looked back since. Osborne is emboldened to the extent, that he opines all doubts over his approach have been conclusively proved wrong.
Do you want my alternative take on the UK's growth figures, the 50p tax row and the US venture capitalist who compared banker bashing to the Holocaust? Here's my review of the political week in 60 seconds...
Never has George Osborne's hypocritical catch-line "we are all in this together" sounded more hollow than with the news that 10% of the poorest areas, including my own borough of Hackney, have been hit by cuts that average over 25% of their local authority budget. Meanwhile some of the wealthiest areas have not just avoided the cuts, but have seen their grants rise under this government.
Mark Carney's important speech set out in some detail the logical steps that are required for a currency union such as the sterling zone to work. It works pretty well at the moment because we have a political union and fiscal and monetary policy work in tandem and banking regulation underpins the system. But would such a system work as well if Scotland were to be an independent country?
American author Mark Twain once said that there are "three types of lies. Lies, damn lies and statistics". This nifty little phrase certainly comes to mind today, when you see that the Institute of Fiscal Studies have accused the government of using dodgy stats to support their claims that living standards are going up.