Everyone knows that, at any job interview, they will ask you where you see yourself in five years' time. It would be foolhardy not to prepare for that question. But it would also be a bit daft to only prepare for that question. You wouldn't expect to get the job if you said 'I think this job is essentially pointless for half a decade and I have no idea what I'd do with my time until then'. Even if your plans for five years later were awesome.
The Labour Party has an amazing record on championing women's rights, from the Equal Pay Act to the Abortion Act, yet at this election, we failed women. We can paint as many busses pink as we like, but if we elect yet another leader who does not appeal to women who are becoming increasingly alienated, we will lose their support for the foreseeable future.
Labour is still suffering the hangover of the Blair/Mandelson/Brown years, and those voices must be silenced outright over the next 6 months for the sake of the PLP as they seem to be PR and electoral cyanide.
I heard this morning that Jonathan Agnew quit Twitter after receiving a stream of abuse on the site after a spat with Kevin Pietersen's wife. Although I haven't (yet) been wished 'death by Ebola' by an anonymous Twitter user, I've recently had the misfortune of dealing with a few Twitter trolls of my own...
I regularly receive Twitter comments ranging from the tame and jejune 'fag', 'fudge packer', 'cock sucker', 'spazzy' and 'ugly cunt' to the more personal and nasty 'you should have been kicked out of your mums womb', 'I'd slit your throat fag', 'You should get raped with a machete' and 'Hitler had the right idea. Put you faggot bastards in an oven at 230 degrees until crispy'.
In every corner of the Internet, there is an entire legion of writers who need to share their thoughts, yet choose to remain Anonymous. And they're not making throwaway comments either. People get fiercely attached to their online personas.
The battle isn't won, of course. A cap on the cost of credit is just one of many changes that need to be made, and we have yet to hear what that cap will be or how it will be set. But for those of us who've been making these arguments for months, and for those of us who've laid awake at night worrying about debt, today is a monumental day.
Wonga has just announced that it makes over £1million profit every week. It made almost four million loans last year and is now the UK's joint 14th biggest lender. Can anyone really compete them out of business? I believe that community finance could and should do just that.
Whilst many businesses struggle to survive in our fragile economy, payday lender Wonga is one of our few home grown success stories. Today they announced they are making more than £1m a week in profit- a 36% increase on last year. No one could begrudge a company that works hard to serve their customers and is rewarded for it. But money made in this industry comes at a heavy cost to our country.
I found exposing myself to physical threats fundamentally incompatible with pregnancy, the first of which ended in miscarriage after being pinned up against a wall by a man who uttered the words "body bag" (amongst others) in my ear. My crime? Co-organising a series of demonstrations exposing the genocide in Darfur.
Over the last week, 'Twitter trolls' have targeted high profile women with repeated online threats of rape, murder and bomb attacks... It's terrible behaviour, of course. Just because it's a feature of internet culture doesn't mean it's ok. But anyone remotely surprised that the internet is full of trolls and misogynists hasn't really been paying much attention for the last 20 years or so.
On a practical level, it's easy to see how self-policing might be hard to do. As was demonstrated with several of the offending accounts, as soon as Twitter suspended an account, the perpetrator simply opened a new one and began the same series of ugly threats and comments.
We should be careful what we wish for. A button will not, alone, rid Twitter (or the wider world) of mysogyny and abuse. These are complex issues that will take more than a button to resolve. But 'report abuse' buttons have been known to be widely abused on other networks.
If you get the online equivalent of a black eye, just ignore it. No one will take you seriously. Another black eye? It was probably your fault. You were asking for it. Serious, sustained injuries? Well, perhaps we could intervene now, but it's such a hassle. It would be far easier for everyone if you just stopped talking about it. If you just disappeared.
On Monday, there will be a vote on an amendment to the Children & Families Bill to include Sex & Relationship Education in the national curriculum. If the amendment is carried, it will go into the bill. Why is it so important?
Who remembers sex education at school? I do (it is permanently etched onto my frontal lobe). We were given a book in year eight with a well-thumbed page showing a cross section of sexual intercourse which looked more like a ham sandwich with legs than the beautiful act of love.