The truth is that we have so few ways of making power answer for its misdeeds that we grab hold of any stick that will do. There is virtually no accountability for incompetence in office beyond the ballot.
In Iceland the prime minister was hauled before the courts. In Britain there is no committee or tribunal to charge Huhne with his time at the energy department. He left power stations unbuilt and energy supply at risk, while pursuing an obsession with giving rich landowners millions of pounds of other people’s money to erect senseless wind turbines. Let him answer for that…
We are back in the middle ages. We subject rulers to trial by combat and ordeal. We force them to “carry the hot iron” or “swallow the blessed morsel”. We make them pass tests of purity and honesty we would never pass ourselves. When they fail, we crucify them. The reason is banal. It is that we cannot get at them any other way.
Source: Simon Jenkins in the Guardian.
I think he’s probably right.