Friday, 3 February 2012

Another Head in the Basket

So Chris Huhne has finally resigned. There was, I suppose, a degree of inevitability about all this and it's fair to argue that as soon as Huhne joined the Cabinet after the 2010 election, his card was marked. He could get past his colourful private life but they say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned and it's clear Vicky Pryce was angry enough to let the cat out of the bag and finish her ex-husband's career.

I'm astonished Huhne thought he could have got way with it. He should have refused to join the Cabinet back in 2010. The problem is that an incident which would likely have been overlooked had Huhne been an Opposition MP (as was his personal life apart from the morally self-righteous Daily Mail) became significant with Huhne in the Cabinet.

He has been foolish and paid a heavy price.

Rather less edifying was the reaction of the political blogsphere over on politicalbetting. The jibes and gloats directed against Huhne reminded me of the chattering crones who gossiped at the foot of the guillotine as the aristocrats were executed. It illustrates one way in which the Internet has dragged the level of political debate to new depths and has been a hugely unedifying experience.

The anti-Coalition Conservatives are in full cry forgetting of course that the last resignation from Cabinet was one of their own.

I suspect today would be better remembered for the positive economic data from both the British and American economies. The encouraging Services sector data suggests the UK will avoid a technical "double dip" recession and some think Q1 GDP might be as high as 0.6% (we'll see) while the American jobs numbers and the falling unemployment rate (8.3%) make Barack Obama's re-election much more likely.

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