The Sketch: Sky's the limit with Lestrade on the case

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You don't want to hear anything unpleasant on this happy day, so I won't go far into Jeremy Hunt's answer about the Sky bid and phone hacking. He said his only legal concern about the bid was the plurality of the media. Really? Surely there's a "fit and proper person" test to be applied as well. Didn't Murdoch's son approve fat pay-offs to various hacking victims to buy their silence? If he paid hundreds of thousands of pounds to cover up criminal activity, would that pass a suitability test? The police would follow the evidence wherever it led, Hunt told us.

"The evidence led the investigating team to a sealed box with a note on it saying Do Not Open," Inspector Lestrade of the Yard said. "The Crown Prosecution Service advised us we were powerless to act. Criminal masterminds are getting far more difficult to apprehend these days."

What else did we have? Labour's Diana Johnson noted that those who questioned the value of the parliamentary creche were silent on the Lords' rifle range. It does seem an extravagance, doesn't it, having a creche and a rifle range? My suggestion is we combine them. It will halve the cost and make for more agile babies. We all win.

On a lighter note, Jack Dromey was bleeding from the head yesterday. Observers say it issued from a rolling pin-shaped impression on Ms Harman's husband's dome. "More tea, dear?" Bam! "Calm down, dear!" Bam! Bam! Bam! I know something about this hidden needling of one's partner. Some parents-in-law I once had conducted a lengthy war against each other, the early stages of which contain a lesson for the Coalition. On one occasion, the husband said to his wife towards the end of pre-dinner drinks: "Would you like me to carve, dear?" She responded by seizing the big, Italian pepperpot and cracking him over the head.

When guests asked where the husband was, she laughingly recounted the story – until she got to the "Shall I carve?" line, whereupon the red mist rose again, she reached for the pepperpot, stormed down the corridor and caught the poor chap another beauty. Naturally, the husband won all public sympathy. But his skill had been to know that "Shall I carve?" was a forbidden phrase in his wife's regime because it meant "Where's my dinner?"

That's the sort of cunning the Tories will need if they want to goad the Lib Dems into destroying the Coalition. What are the secret phrases that mean nothing to outsiders but will summon the vermilion mist to poor Vince?

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