The newspaper industry exposed the Rotten Parliament as a nest of chiselling little crooks in which very few MPs had resisted the opportunities for theft, peculation, avarice, fraud, improper enrichment and petty greed at the taxpayers' expense. In the wake of that great disgrace, which also brought a welcome 'churn' of the Commons, one would have expected the proper response of a chamber committed to the national interest to be greater transparency, restraint, and a system of compensation based on equity and probity.
But not so. Those old hands from the Rotten Parliament who remain continue to imagine they deserve a privilege that the public have already denied to them, and have spent their efforts finding the loopholes in the new IPSA regime. They have learned nothing. In their prehensile brain stems they still believe they are 'special', that they deserve first-class travel and all the pampered luxury of the international hotel at the public expense; their concern is now how they can hide or disguise this from the voting public.
Leveson has offered them the opportunity not only for payback, to administer a kicking to the newspaper industry that humiliated them, but an open door to introduce and to subsequently modify, grow and expand laws that will prevent the press ever again exposing their fraud, sleaze and corruption. Clegg is nothing but an unprincipled rogue, a chancer, a fly-boy who has had his day and can be ignored. Labour, on the other hand, have already shown that they are prepared to put party first and country nowhere in their refusal to reform advantageous Rotten Boroughs of third-world standards of electoral probity that shame us to the world. To muzzle Murdoch they would sell our freedom for a mess of electoral pottage.
Leveson's report is responsible and balanced to an extent that few expected. The real danger, the legislature's response, is yet to come.