Two people have already asked me why on earth I’m at the Liberal Democrat conference while the markets are in crisis. But it’s becoming more and more clear that I’m in exactly the right place. Bring more than 100 Liberal Democrat delegates together on a seaside resort and — with frightening regularity — capitalism seems to shudder.
Yesterday Vince Cable joked about the “Lib Dem curse” that has seen their autumn conference coincide with the collapse of Northern Rock, Lehman Brothers and Black Wednesday.
Since last night’s BBC broadcast about an imminent rebellion from a minister of state there has been a frenzied race to name him or her.
The belief today is that it is likely to be David Cairns, a minister in the Scotland Office. He hasn’t broken cover yet. Other names on the rumour mill include skills minister David Lammy (his spokesman denies it in the strongest possible terms) and Ivan Lewis, health minister, who angered the Brownites earlier this year by saying voters were angry and disappointed.