Chancellor, I am afraid it is not true that a majority of people are better off but labouring under the misapprehension that they are worse off. It is one thing for a government to rebut the claims of their opponents. It is quite another to brief against the experiences of ordinary families across the country.
I had the honor of working with Madiba often during my time as co-chairman of the U.S.-South Africa Binational Commission. Each and every time I was with him, I was awed by his commanding yet graceful presence.
As leaders of governments and human rights groups from all over the world prepare to attend the funeral of Nelson Mandela in South Africa next week, here is a proposal that would pay worthy tribute to his memory.
After three wasted years, we have had another day of complacency from George Osborne. All we heard in a speech of nearly an hour was more evidence of the cost of living crisis and a few misplaced boasts about the state of the economy, despite the fact that this is no recovery at all for millions of families.
Thankfully the evidence is starting to show that Britain is turning a corner. We're now one of the fastest growing advanced economies in the world. Labour said this couldn't be done without growing the deficit too, but the British people have proved them wrong.
Universal Credit is the government's flagship welfare reform. It has become a fiasco. Ministers failed at the outset to grasp the scale of it. Now the prime minister has failed to get a grip, or even to resolve the dispute between his Ministers. Rescuing the project is going to be tough. Thursday's development gives no hint that the current administration is up to the task.
As a Ukipper on the libertarian and radical wing of the party, the hierarchy has wanted rid of me for two years. Here was an opportunity for them to try and put the boot in. The overwhelming support sent them back to their dugout. Incidentally, at the time of writing, the EU audit trail has uncovered a €1billion Euro black hole in aid for the Congo. Should I have said Congo Land?
The critics of austerity have been proved right. The OBR confirm today what we already knew - the recovery is at least two years behind schedule. The Chancellor has failed to meet the objective he set of a rebalanced economy growing enough through exports and investment to close the deficit by the time of the next election.
Delivering his autumn statement, George Osborne declared he was "proud" of the changes his government is making to the state pension. Really? As a thank you for a lifetime's contribution to our society, those pensioners with no independent wealth to fall back on, are facing their retirement living in poverty.
In his Autumn Statement, the Chancellor is claiming vindication for his economic strategy, saying that it has put Britain back on the road to economic recovery. However, while it does appear to be the case that the economy is recovering again, this is in spite of his economic policies, not because of them.
The Chancellor may feel he only needs to announce tiny symbolic policy moves, given the recovery the economy is finally enjoying. But the government has so much more to do, particularly on the "PIM" policy areas of planning, immigration and money, if he wants to improve the long-term prospects for the UK's economic wellbeing.
After several years of generally bad years, everyone will welcome the good news that the Statement contains. However we have good reasons to think that the medium term prospects are not as rosy as the Chancellor thinks...
When the Chancellor stands up to give his Autumn Statement on Thursday, he will be reassured that the economy and consumer views are more positive than this time last year. But Which? consumer insight shows that the battle isn't yet won.
If Chancellor George Osborne caps welfare spending without thinking enough about those in dire need, he is at risk of making a short-sighted mistake for which children will pay the highest price. We have already seen an increasing number of children getting help only when they reach crisis point which, for many, is often too late.
The government's claim that it is protecting disabled people from cuts is, of course, nonsense. Deep cuts are being made to disability benefits and to social care, which is now used by 25% fewer people. But government is expert in disguising its actions and finding someone else to blame.
While the Chancellor has a rapidly improving economic canvas on which to paint his story this week - there is also no doubt in my mind that the Government machine has embarked on its most successful week of news management since it entered power.
It's easy to say you want a world without nuclear weapons. Nearly everyone does: even David Cameron. It's like saying there should be no global poverty: the hard part is taking action to do something about it.
Last year, 1.2 million women and 800,000 men reported domestic abuse, up 10% in the past three years. In the same time frame, the number of cases the police referred to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) fell by 13%. In essence, fewer perpetrators were stopped and more victims remain at risk.
This Thursday the Chancellor gives his Autumn Statement. With the economic upturn shaky at best we can expect little in the way of good news and plenty more squeezing of budgets. Except, that is, for one thing. It appears that the Chancellor has £700million to spare on a measure that even its supporters claim won't any difference. So what's the truth? Are we in the grip of a near permanent austerity? Or do we have some cash to burn?