This place is bonkers. Having run to the Chamber for a division, my Blackberry informs me it’s cancelled just as I pile in through the doors.
There is just a little too much going on in terms of animated chatter amongst MPs; and so I escape to the solitude and quiet of the members' library.
Wrong move. The Sergeant at Arms strides in, sword in hand, I kid you not, and escorts Labour MP John McDonnell out. Minutes before, he had picked up the Mace in the Chamber in anger and thrown it onto Dennis Skinner’s chair (vacant obviously!). This is after he shouted "you are a disgrace" in the face of Geoff Hoon.
My first thought was "Can John fence?" Why the sword? Mulling this strange sight over, I sit down at the rather lovely oak table under the green lamp and start to write a letter to the Speaker. Only I’m distracted by the police who march in and parade through and around the library.
An excessive response? I think so. Apparently John is being escorted off the premises. I suppose the reaction of the House authorities is to ensure that those of us who may feel inclined to step over the line of propriety within the Chamber think twice.
A good democracy ensures that the voice of opposition or dissent is given good time to air and debate issues, which may not always suit the Government of the day. Maybe the House authorities would like to reflect on giving members a fair hearing. They could do it whilst they polish their swords? Or the Mace even?