Sweet is the spectacle of a home secretary bitten by her own snake. The outrage of Jacqui Smith's television expenses claim lies not in its content, lurid as it is, but in the way it was exposed. How many times must the home secretary have been assured in security briefings that her latest purchase of some data storage gizmo was "totally secure"?
"Don't worry," the briefers would have said, "the material will be protected by the finest firewalls, the most foolproof anti-hacking devices and the most savage legal defence. Nothing will be transferable and only the highest in the land will have access. Besides, home secretary, as you have so often said, the innocent have nothing to fear."
Yes, they do. They have the revelation of their husband's taste in movies, apparently leaked by contractors in receipt of easily copied discs, now on offer to anyone with £300,000.