Growing up, I had a very simplistic view of the word 'democracy'. In history lessons, I'd learned about the past and how nations had been ruled by kings, queens or dictators. I was proud to live in a country where decisions weren't taken for us by one person, but where we the people could choose our own future. What an amazing, childish dream!
From 'Gaza isn't occupied' to 'Hamas doesn't want a ceasefire' to 'Israel doesn't target civilians', it's time to rebut the key talking points of Israeli spokespersons such as Mark Regev. After all, you're entitled to your own opinions, but not your own facts.
Peering deep down into the less ideological depths of your nakedly self-interested soul to ask: what would it genuinely take to vote Ukip? In my case, what might have made me rail against allowing any old Romanian or Bulgarian to pitch up and work here? What could have tipped my pencil to the Ukip box?
American political advisers, especially ones with successful high profile campaigns under their belts, are not cheap, therefore, come the spring of 2015, even if any successes of Mr. Cameron or Mr. Miliband can attributable to Mr. Messina or Mr. Axelrod, respectively, such successes would have come with a big fat American price tag.
It is demeaning, they argue, to stand in line for a food parcel. But is it really any less demeaning to stand in a not dissimilar line at the door of a job centre or welfare office. Don't both turn people into state dependents?
Twenty councils, among them Green-led Brighton and Hove, asked the government for powers to put a levy on big supermarkets in their area. The money is to be used to support local communities damaged by the business practices of these giants... small businesses and cooperatives could again flower and grow in communities around the country.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim community in Pakistan has become the soft target for politicians who seek to act tough for extreme hard line religious groups in order to garner political support and in some cases, through fear of their own lives if they are perceived as Ahmadi sympathisers.
'It would be cataclysmic for Scotland to become independent, it would aid the forces of darkness, it would threaten the stability of the western world' These remarks, uttered way back in April by the former Secretary General of NATO George Robertson caused a political storm in Scotland.
It was always Gordon Brown's problem. It's turned out to be Philip Clarke's as well over at Tesco. And, despite his recent runs for England, it may well be Alastair Cook's too. But why are deputies so often such failures? Why, when they have spent years planning their accession and have been positively groomed to take over, do they invariably make such a hash of the top job?
Friday's preliminary GDP estimate for the second quarter of 2014 shows an economy growing at 0.8% a quarter, and recovering it's pre-recession level of output. It would be wrong to take this as a sign of 'business-as-usual' however, when fundamental problems with the UK economy remain.
The reason I'm writing to you today is to discuss things that happen here in Britain and in other European countries. You see, it seems that sometimes, some people find it difficult to distinguish between protesting against Israeli policy and abusing Jews here in Britain. You'd think the difference between the two would be fairly obvious, but apparently not. So in that spirit, and to help you tell right from wrong, here are a few tips.
Michael Gove was amongst the longest serving education secretaries in Britain since World War II. Committed personally as well as professionally to the intellectual values that Britain has historically championed, Gove knew what he wanted to do.
British Muslims are an extremely enterprising community. They contribute over £31billion to the UK economy every year. Over 100,000 British Muslims are civil servants, doctors, lawyers and accountants. In London alone, small businesses run by Muslims employ over 70,000 people... The majority of people view British Muslims as contributing well to our national way of life. Let us build on and strengthen that. While I'm fasting this weekend - when I'm hungry and thirsty - I will be thinking about what I can do to promote a more positive view of British Muslims - I think we should all do the same.
What can anyone from the outside do in such circumstances? In the short term the need is for maximum pressure for a ceasefire and for the provision of humanitarian aid. Once the violence stops, we have to get to grips with the underlying problems. This is not just about restarting the same old peace process and hoping it will go somewhere this time. There is little or no chance of that, unless there are real changes of personalities and policies on both Israeli and Palestinian sides. I would start by suggesting we all face up to four realities.
I am particularly worried about the justice gap and the lack of action when it comes to violence against women. Not only have prosecutions and convictions fallen at a time when reported crimes are going up, there is a growing use of community resolutions which are just inappropriate for serious crimes. Much as the Home Office like to tell us this is OK, it isn't.
Reinvigorating one of the great offices of state will require a fresh look at how we exert global influence and how we identify early warning signs where countries with close links to the UK are heading towards trouble. Bangladesh is one such country and should be a high priority for Hammond.
Glasgow and Unicef, working together aim to show that these Commonwealth Games will be remembered, not only for the amazing sportsmanship and athletic endeavour on show, but also for harnessing the immense power of sport to help save millions of children's lives across the Commonwealth.
The extent to which the UK and most of the rest of the Western world are currently mismanaging our economies clearly has a huge financial cost. In the longer term, however, the political cost will be even greater than the economic price - unless we see radical changes in policy. The failure of the West to deliver a reasonable economic performance - combined with the related problem of widespread inability to get difficult decisions taken - has led an increasingly large number of people across the world to consider whether more authoritarian of running modern diversified economies might work better than those based on liberal democracy.
We have planted a flag in Brussels which will be a rallying point for others who favour reform and renegotiation in Europe, including those MEPs currently in different political groups in the parliament. Anyone who believes Europe has lost its way and has to change, will know that they will never lack friendship or support from the ECR.