Yesterday, most of the main six o'clock TV news bulletins were led by the story of a precocious fifteen year old schoolgirl from Eastbourne who ran away to France with her 30-year-old maths teacher…not kidnapped and smuggled across the Channel in the boot of his car, but rather, went willingly. As I said, this story led most of the news bulletins at six o'clock - Channel 4 News at 7 o'clock was restrained enough to have it as its third lead.
This was ahead of news of Syria, where the killings go on, of Afghanistan, where the killings go on, the Lib Dem conference in Brighton which will probably choose the next government in 2015.… But here, I have to say, the BBC were mature enough to precede it with the huge story of whether or not the Tory chief whip called a policeman a pled.
As I say, we've come a long way and if the Tarquins who are in charge of TV now had been running the news media in 1940, I'm sure that Gracie Fields buying a new husband would have led the news over the eminent Nazi invasion.
As I said, we've come a long way...