George Osborne, theoretically at least, is David Laws’ boss. What he should be doing, provided there are no further facts to scrutinise, is stepping outside the door of Number 11 and calling down the thunder. He should tell the press that his faith in Laws’ ability is undimmed. He should say that forcing Laws out of the closet was to the press’ shame. He should say that he believes that Laws has made and will make sound and prudent judgements about the economy and looks forward to continuing to work with him through a very difficult period. In other words, he should be willing to step into the line of fire for his colleague. Showing this amount of courage could turn the Coalition into a team; the spectacle of a Conservative defending a Liberal Democrat would do nothing but cement trust. It would also be an eloquent statement to the Alistair Campbells of this world that their form of political discourse no longer works.