I said all along that Brown wouldn't go quietly. When he made his speech this afternoon outside No.10 I was in the newsroom of a national newspaper. Gasps and incredulous laughter swept across the room. Of course, this was mostly journalistic lipsmacking at the feast of nonsense to come and all the good copy to be derived from it. But there was also a genuine sense of disbelief.
Someone turned to me, a Labour supporter as it happens, and said: 'That's the most insane thing I've ever heard.'
But it was no surprise to me. What, did they really think an arch-control freak like Brown would just say ta-ta? The defining characteristic of the modern Labour Party is a total lack of respect for constitutional normality: the whole mechanism of civil governance is there to be raped as expedience demands.
Only the other week I'd had a conversation in the pub with the same colleague during which I'd advanced my theory that Brown is mentally ill and unstable, as well as being a Communist.
'In what way,' said someone drinking with us, who regards himself, with some good reason, as a political specialist, 'is Brown a Communist.'
'Emotionally,' I replied.
But they were not up for that.
It seems obvious to me that Clegg will side with Labour - a window of opportunity lies in that direction: a voting system that will keep the Tories permanently out of office. Clegg must know that the Tories will never give him anything much on voting reform; turkeys don't vote for Christmas.
In the background, Mandelson politicks - the ol intrigant engineering the last great rolls of the dice to build a thousand-year Blairite reich with Cleggy boy and finally dance on England's grave.