The grandstanding founder of WikiLeaks has, it seems, been out of the limelight too long. Julian Assange is never one to let practicalities stand in the way of self-promotion: his latest stunt is to stand for a seat in the Australian Senate despite his being holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London (hiding from US ire at the dissemination of diplomatic cables and Swedish allegations of rape).
Were circumstances different, an attempt to turn a fringe movement into a mainstream political force might be commendable. But Mr Assange is a special case. If his aim is to be taken seriously, a Skype-dependent pitch to represent Victoria in absentia is not the way to go about it. Rather, he should stop skulking in no-man’s-land, go to Stockholm and face the charges against him. Until then, he is no champion of liberty and no politician; he is simply a coward.