Successive governments have accepted an appalling growing crisis where thousands of people in the UK die an avoidable early death. The cause of that death is costing over £6billion annually in ill health before that death, thousands of children have been condemned to poor health or a lower IQ before they are even born, other people are struggling to afford enough eat enough even twice a day.
Judging by their public utterances, many Eurosceptics imagine that if we have ever get a say on Europe, an "out" vote is in the bag. Well, it isn't. British voters are far more likely to decide on staying in. Let me explain why.
I wanted to discuss economic growth, where it might be found and what the government was doing to promote it. What I discovered was a minister who, I think, is serious, committed and doing what he can to promote growth for everyone. But I couldn't help wondering how far Cable's commitment is given any substantial support from his colleagues in other departments.
Speaking as a Conservative, the next election is ours to lose. If it means holding our noses... then so be it. Every Conservative has a duty to knuckle down and follow our leader. If we do that, there is every chance that come 2020, the United Kingdom (and it will still be united) will be prosperous and free
Sadly we live in a world when politicians rarely look outside the bubble in which they are trapped. You can't blame them really. If they say sorry, their rivals say 'you have failed'. If they admit fault, the ideologues of their respective parties start baying for blood. In a world where your position is only as secure as the amount of time you have spent climbing the greasy pole to political success, little wonder that they feel they can't be honest.
The UKIP successes in these local elections are influential in the short term. However, the long term impact of UKIP is still up for debate. While UKIP have been on the rise in recent years it is true that even these results have taken many analysts by surprise.
Whether you're Labour, Liberal Democrat, Conservative, UKIP, Green Party or other, you will have good people in your party. It also goes to say that whatever your affiliation, you'll have bad people in your party too.
Starting in the early hours of tomorrow morning, we shall be bombarded with analyses of the local election results. Are the gains and losses for each party above, below or on a par with expectations? Is Ed Miliband on course to become Prime Minister? Has UKIP overtaken the Liberal Democrats?
Whilst it is true that a handful of Ukip candidates have caused us embarrassment, others have been quite unfairly traduced. After the election I will go into details of false allegations and the downright intimidation that has happened to some of our good people.
Let's get this straight: a vote is never wasted as long as you use it. And the people who say this are wrong.
The Abu Qatada saga demonstrates the challenging complexity of extraditing suspected criminals and terrorists through bilateral arrangements. Of course there are special features in that case and it concerns a non-EU country, but it still serves to highlight the sheer absurdity of the Conservatives' desire to pull out of the European Arrest Warrant.
My, we are a gloomy lot. Last week, I discussed the possible impact of a triple-dip recession. Last Thursday's GDP figures suggest that Britain's economy has so far avoided this fate. However, it is also clear that the government's hopes of steady growth of 2 - 3% a year have yet to be realised. And YouGov research for the Resolution Foundation finds that five years of economic troubles have left a deep mark on public opinion.
Let's get one thing straight. UKIP do not provide a credible alternative in local politics.
Being encouraged by Cameron et al, to celebrate the life of Mrs Thatcher an apparent champion of freedom, while the current PM and his expensively educated brethren seek to implement their equivalent of Thatcher's poll tax is just adding insult to insult.
The Euromyth has fuelled journalists for many years. Some of the stories have been ludicrous, some have been genuinely funny. Plenty have been disingenuous.
I am the first person to stand up and bang the drum for Newbury - we're a great market town with a great sense of community. We're above average in almost every respect - most notably in employment and affluence, yet still we seem to be letting our young people down by failing to provide them with the education they so badly deserve.