As Parliament Week draws to a close, both its organisers and prominent figures, like Mariam and Alvin, will soon turn their attentions to May 2015, and the challenges that are sure to arise.
There's already a lot of buzz around Parliament about the upcoming election. On 7 May , over three million young people will have the chance to vote in Britain for the first time. Here's the bad: only one-third of young people say that they will vote, compared to two-thirds of the general population and 75% of those over 65.
No-one is short on an opinion about Ed Miliband and the way that he is leading the Labour Party. After the media storm at the weekend about a plot to oust him, things have gone quieter but the media are still desperate to see leadership blood...
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act should be reviewed to protect the "welfare of women" along with the "welfare of children".
The speed of change in terms of global drug policy over the past few years has been nothing short of remarkable. As is their way, Britain's political class has largely responded by shutting their eyes, putting their fingers in their ears and insisting on business as usual.
Standing in the middle of Parliament Square, I watch the October twilight turn the breath of the Superintendent and the Baroness into steam. In the middle of hundreds of protestors with placards like "People, not banks!", the Green member of the House of Lords Jenny Jones is receiving a Pinteresque line of questioning...
Real democracy is messy, like the Houses of Parliament is rocky and uneven; an organic structure in the Gothic style... It should not be made clean, and it should not be made smooth. Winston Churchill, for one, was not afraid of the fight. And neither, one may hope, are #OccupyDemocracy.
Recall would strengthen the link between an MP and their constituents, which is at the heart of our representative democracy. Real recall would mean MPs who are involved in serious misconduct, fail to represent their constituents (think Nadine Dorries or George Galloway ditching the Commons for reality TV), switch parties without triggering a by-election or break electoral promises could face recall if enough of their constituents demand it.
These retiring MPs will be inspired by the likes of Ruth Kelly and James Purnell before them. All stepped down while still relatively young, having recognised that political comebacks here are few and far between. But what the likes of Kelly and Purnell have also shown is there is life away from the public eye, the media spotlight and well beyond the ruthless world of politics.
The public, media and political response to the revelation that Lord Freud, in a fringe meeting at Conservative Party conference, suggested that some people with disabilities are not "worth" the minimum wage and perhaps should instead work for as little as £2 an hour, has been fascinating.
It is significant that the Labour leadership backs the motion in Parliament on Monday. Hopefully many Conservative politicians will join them so that the motion is passed with the handsome majority that such a mild measure requires. If the British Parliament votes in favour it would be highly important symbolically, a strong expression of Parliamentary support for recognition...
I think being a locally focused MP is almost like cabinet career suicide. Off the top of my head I can't think of anyone in the cabinet now or in the shadow cabinet whom are there purely to represent their local constituents.
To save lives and protect human rights, the genocidal fundamentalists of ISIS must be stopped. But not by the West and not for the reasons often advanced by David Cameron and Barack Obama... The truth is that if the US and UK are serious about fighting ISIS they should start by aiding the people on the ground who know the region best, have local roots and who are already leading the fight against the jihadist menace - the peshmerga army of the Kurdish regional government in Iraq and guerrillas from the Kurdistan Workers Party and allied movements in Syria.
So how do we stop these ancient divisions opening up and tearing apart a nation? Well for starters, the English need enfranchising with politicians to represent them directly. Many options are on the table to achieve this.
The 'Read On. Get On' campaign has an historic goal - to eliminate illiteracy. It may surprise some that in this country with its literary heritage, its leading universities, its Nobel laureates, its history and its world-class economy, that illiteracy should remain untamed and intractable. Yet one in five 11-year-olds are still leaving primary school struggling with the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic.
If the UK is to be a world-leading economy, it needs to be matched with world-class infrastructure... Future economic growth depends on a significant increase in airport capacity in order to encourage international trade and inward investment, attract tourists and increase employment.