APART from Gary Bainbridge and Chris Huhne, I would not normally wish a custodial sentence upon any Liverpool Post colleague, past or present.
In Bainbridge’s case, it is nothing personal. I am just jealous of his massive Twitter following and thought I might steal a march while he was banged up in chokey for a spell.
On second thoughts, that would probably not work anyway. All prisoners seem to have mobile phones these days, and he would pick up thousands more followers daily by Tweeting wry observations about his hapless attempts to create a usable shank from a melted toothbrush handle and razorblade.
In Huhne’s case, however, it is personal.
Not in the sense that I have ever met him – he was a reporter on this paper before I was even born – but in the sense that I have met his type. Or, more accurately, shared road space with them.
In the colourful detail of Huhne’s downfall, we have lost sight of his original crime: he sped down a motorway contraflow at nearly 70mph.
If only he had not tried to cover up his mistake, we muse. If only he had managed to control his animal urges toward the help. If only his wife had taken his betrayal in more stoical fashion. If only he had not been so desperate to mend the shattered relationship with his son.
All true, of course, and all eminently worthy of discussion.
However, beneath that tangled web there lies a much simpler truth: I cannot abide flash gits in BMWs who think the rules of the road do not apply to them.
This ubiquitous species – it is a rare trip down the M6 without one looming large in your rear-view mirror, lights blazing – is never “just speeding”. They are demonstrating their power and self-appointed place in the pecking order: out of the way, peasant, my business is more important than your safety.
They are, by definition, reckless and selfish. They are the very last people we should entrust with running the country.
I do not claim to be without sin in this department, by the way. I have clocked up 12 points on my driving licence, although thankfully over a sufficiently long period to avoid a ban.
However, there are two major differences between Huhne and myself.
Firstly, my penalty points were all collected in my 20s. Then I grew up and stopped driving like a pillock.
Huhne was 48 when he collected those fateful points – and still 48 when, just weeks later, the bonehead was caught using his phone while driving and banned anyway.
The second difference is this: I have never suggested I would be fit to run the country. Far from it. Did you not read that bit at the start? I would jail a man for having more Twitter followers than me.