Simon Carr: The old order has collapsed, and the PM is stuck in the rubble

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The Independent Online

If history repeats itself, maybe this is the Prime Minister's "pretty straight kind of guy" moment. It's about the right time in his premiership, just after the end of the honeymoon and just before the crockery starts flying.

Cameron even alluded to his immediate ancestor when he said at least his director of communications hadn't been involved in "taking money for tobacco advertising, or starting a war, or whatever".

There was a good deal of "the truth is" and "frankly" and that upper-class way he wants things done: "proply". We were told that he took personal responsibility for all decisions made, that Coulson was a friend he wouldn't discard, and that "the buck stops right here".

He also pointed out it wasn't for the Prime Minister to send in the police, or demand the resignation of a company executive, there is a separation of powers in this country after all.

Loyalty, fairness, taking it on the chin, the Tory virtues decently expressed. There is still the amateur spirit alive in our PM's breast and we should enjoy it while we can because it may not last the summer.

The loss of News International must be bitter. The collapse of the customary way of doing things, and to be caught in the rubble looking dodgy, that must hurt. But the humiliation of waking up every morning having to do what Ed Miliband tells him to do; oh, that must be like a pint of gall with wormwood chasers.

A senior Tory wrote recently that Cameron was temperamentally inclined to head for the door marked Easy. He needs adversity to prosper. When the electoral reform campaign threatened his survival it brought out the best in him. Or the worst, depending on your viewpoint.

The prospect of gawky Ed Miliband issuing instructions to the Prime Minister – and the Prime Minister having to obey them – that is a survival matter. We are surely heading into a neo-Cameron era in the Coalition story.