Mr Osborne's portfolio For lovers of humbug, the comments on George Osborne's appointment to the editorship of the Evening
The discussions in the media this week as to whether journalist stings are ethical has raised an even more pressing question - why do we hold officials in any form of public office to higher standards than others?
As the UK referendum on Brexit approaches I feel obliged to stand forward and confess. The European Union is often criticized for dealing with ridiculous things such as the shape of cucumbers: banning the curved ones and imposing straight ones on farmers and consumers alike.
Here's the problem. The government's plans are, in reality, a straight transfer of resources and responsibility. These move away from local authorities, and the democratic control that they are subject to, in favour, ultimately, of private organisations who are not accountable in anything like the same way. And who must as a reason to continue to exist, turn in a profit.
It's not fair that parents of little girls start fretting when their daughters are seven or eight, thinking that no man will ever fall in love with them because of their dark skins; it's not fair that girls feel the need to cake themselves with skin-lightening creams and painfully mismatched powders in an attempt to feel beautiful.
The skeletons in my closet have been going through a bit of a reshuffle too. It's all the rage. With cries of rage and anguish from those who think that teachers do nothing anyway, schools have reached the summer break and there's time for clearing out the closets and tidying the loft.
Take a look at your life and get rid of this baggage by asking yourself a series of questions and by completing the following exercise. In effect, what we are doing is making certain tasks "complete", drawing a line under them and moving on.
How I hate the phrase "driving up standards". Every time I hear it, I see primary-age schoolchildren, bent low and sweating over heavy oars, struggling to propel the great ship of education towards some distant, hazy destination that their elders and betters have deemed they must aim for.
If you have spent much time working on your family history and/or genealogy, then you know there is a popular saying as follows: "Genealogy without proof is mythology."
SEO can harm as well as heal, as it were. I am aware I can ruin a business as well as add millions on to the bottom line. I take the responsibility given to me by a client seriously but I know not all do. I'd like to see standards not as exclusionary but as simply something everyone must achieve to call themselves an SEO.