It is a shame that we will be losing Jack Straw at the next election. He has just announced his attention to stand down from a seat he has occupied for more than 30 years. I always rather liked him. He seemed – you know – sort of human, and his instincts were usually right, certainly over Iraq, even if he did cave in. So, we might add, did the majority of the country cave, at the time, under that welter of disinformation. He was misled as everybody was.
He once came into the Today prog when I was still editor and, in the Green Room, I mentioned to him a disadvantageous story which had just broken and which we intended to ask him about. 'Yeah fine,' he replied, 'I shall respond with meaningless career-enhancing waffle.' And so he did. But I liked the self-awareness, and the acknowledgement that it was a relevant question. His son, Will, meanwhile, is another question entirely. So bien-pensant he probably thinks the name 'Will' is racist.