Brian Hitchen, former editor of the Daily Star and the Sunday Express, said he knew about allegations of abuse by Jimmy Savile 45 years ago. In effect, he says newspapers didn't do such stories then and, in any case, libel laws protected people like Savile.
Hang on a minute, libel laws are draconian in this country, but if a story is substantially true AND you can prove it, then you have a defence.
Until now, nothing has appeared since Hitchen heard these rumours and it's a big story. So, is he really saying: 1) the tabloids couldn't prove these rumours, despite having 45 years on which to work on them. 2) He sat on the story for 45 years? 3) The rumours were filed in the "Forget it / too much trouble / refer to lawyers" drawer? Bet I know which one.
So why now? Simple, you don't have to prove anything because Savile is dead. You can't libel the dead; he can't challenge you.
However, an important question remains unanswered. If all the people coming out of the woodwork "knew" about Savile, why weren't the police involved a long time ago? Or did we accept child abuse as a fact of life until a few weeks ago?
Scotland Yard is investigating now and the BBC is working with them to "leave no stone unturned". All a bit late, you might say. Sadly, I can't rule out the possibility that someone did tell them a lot earlier …
The whole thing is starting to smell – if not the true stink of a cover-up, then the nasty whiff of inaction, never mind the children.
Did Jim fix that, too?