1. The New Yorker's George Packer  says that, with the rise of private contractors, the US will struggle to perform the civilian part of the counter-insurgency in Afghanistan.
2. The Guardian's Andrew Sparrow  blogs on a poll showing that only 12 per cent of Tory MPs name "Cameronism" as their political philosophy.
3. The Labour MP Tom Harris  predicts that, as in 1979, 1983, 1987 and 1992, Labour will lose the election if it raises taxes on the rich.
4. But over at Liberal Conspiracy , Sunny Hundal attacks the "deluded" Harris and argues that Labour has nothing to lose from fighting the "class war".
5. And the FT's Westminster Blog  spots Nick Clegg in his best Ziggy Stardust outfit on Nick Brown's Christmas card.