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.
I'm disgusted. But I'm not disgusted at Newmark, whose behaviour with supposedly consenting adults is his business, and does not merit being splashed across red tops. I'm disgusted at the despicable 'journalism' that was carried out in my supposed interest... Because the truth is, I have never experienced less harassment than I have in Parliament.
Labour should be commended for their efforts to bring the disengaged into politics, whether those for whom the referendum in Scotland rejuvenated their interest in politics or for young people and ethnic minorities. They should go further too, they need to ensure the regions where the anger at Westminster bubble matches that felt by many Scot, once again take part in the political process, both for their chances in 2015 and for the condition of British democracy.
Scotland can do us all a favour and help relegate to history all the centralised, top-down control. As if only the nice parts of London mattered. But it won't be easy. Scotland already has the problem of being an economy that is massed around its central belt. But that will not be solved 400 miles south.
Britain is rightly proud of its track record of job creation, but a successful 21st Century economy requires more. Ahead of the 2015 Election, it is time for all parties to face up to the changing face of the labour market, and set out their commitments to building a more sustainable, productive and robust economy that offers opportunities for all workers, and cities, throughout the UK.
Whenever I see Ed Miliband trying to pretend he's a human, I'm always reminded of a particular scene in Mark Tavener's criminally underrated sitcom Absolute Power in which the oily sultan of spin Charles Prentiss (not so much played by as written for Stephen Fry) is sizing up dowdy Tory shadow minister Joanne Standing (basically a pilot version of The Thick of It's Nicola Murray).
The five things you need to know on Friday 11 July 2014... 1) WAS THERE A PAEDO 'CHUM-OCRACY'? From the Sun: "The Westminster elite 'protect...