THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
The car that started it all
Do they have any concern for the truth?

Is Brown more Nixonian than Obaman?

BBC NEWS | UK | UK Politics | No 10 apology over 'slur' e-mails.

GB I am sure no-one is surprised that No. 10 Downing Street is populated by vicious obsessives who are just as puerile now as they were when student politicians. After all, that pretty much sums up their boss.

It is surprising however that there is at least one moral individual behind the glossy black door. Someone apparently disgusted enough by the boss's closest advisers to leak draft smears against political opponents. It is even more surprising that she chose to leak them, not to the targets, but to a political blogger.

For some time, politicians have devoted more energy to rubbishing political blogs than would be justified if they really believed them as irrelevant as they suggest. If anything, I think the politicians are beginning to take political blogging more seriously than (in Britain at least) it deserves. Such respect will not truly be justified until blogs are read casually by people with only that passing interest in politics, which is consistent with full sanity. That won't happen until bloggers themselves get over their nerdish enthusiasm for the medium and focus on the message.

This is a big moment for Guido though. He has claimed a major scalp (and, with luck, may claim a bigger one yet). It will be hard, however, to make the connection between the political masters and their deniable, dispensable attack dogs. I wish him luck with that. I also devoutly hope he has no skeletons he wishes to remain in his cupboard. In the course of what is likely to be the vilest general election campaign in our history, he may himself become a target for the smears, lies and insinuations that are the cocaine of our political classes. If they were prepared to contemplate breaking a butterfly on their wheel, why not a hornet?

Of course, worse things could happen. I think he need have no fear there. Even if immoral enough to want to, this lot is so inept that their enemies are safer than their friends.