• What has Ecuador gained from harbouring Mr Wiki Julian Assange from the authorities? Quite a bit, says Fidel Narváez, the country's consul in London and the man who has done most to keep the fugitive happy.
"I would say that the image the international community has of Ecuador and its president has improved," Narváez tells the Prisma news organisation. "This is the most important political asylum seeker in the world, and he turned to Ecuador for protection." Narváez likes and believes in Assange. But is he easy to get along with, the Prisma inquires? "Hmmm," the consul says. "I don't know whether easy is the best description. I would imagine he's very demanding of the people who work for him. In any case, he's a good 'tenant' as far as being respectful towards all the embassy staff is concerned." So when will it end? "We believe a political and diplomatic solution will be possible sooner rather than later," Narváez says. But if he's wrong? "Julian Assange and Ecuador will be able to hold out as long as it takes." Fighting talk. Take note, William Hague.
• The thoughts of Kevin Hurley, Britain's most outspoken elected police commissioner, also excite comment, particularly his view that Sir William Macpherson was the victim of "post-colonial guilt". Hurley shoots from the lip, we said of him on Friday. He does all that and more, says reader Graham Howard, recalling an email exchange with the commissioner for Surrey. You say you prize independence, noted Howard. Why did you seek the Conservative party nomination? Because it seemed the only way to win the election. However, Hurley says: "I was regarded as not 'political enough'." So he ran with his own cash as an independent. And the good thing about being totally independent, he told his constituent, "is that now I don't have to put up with nonsense from anyone. That includes you". That's the commish. A sharp word for everybody.
• Many questions asked of education secretary Michael Gove and his disciples. Here is one of the more unusual: why were the writings of a former government adviser on race and social inclusion (and an ex-adviser to London mayor Boris Johnson) apparently designated by the department as "hate speech"? Professor Gus John tells us that a DfE civil servant was forwarded a link to his blog detailing fears that Mary Seacole might be airbrushed as part of Gove's brave new world of history tuition. Finding that he could not open it, the civil servant went to Prof John's website. An automated notice appeared saying "Access to this site has been denied as 'the content of the site may be contrary to DfE standards of behaviour and decency'," the professor tells us. "It says also that my website has been categorised as promoting 'hate and discrimination'." Prof John has written to Gove seeking an explanation. But as we know, chaos reigns at the department. There may be a lengthy wait.
• All change at the BBC as director general Tony Hall lunches and then anoints candidates for high office. Last week saw the announced return of former Labour minister turned community organiser James Purnell, who will be director of strategy. Many were waiting to see if the DG would break significant bread with Jay Hunt, the BBC's "queen over the water" at Channel 4, who has done her commercial stint for two years. Many thought she might be enticed to return to the mother ship. But as yet no sign. Could it be that too many other execs wouldn't feel ready to welcome her back just yet?
• As the Cambridge Union prepares today to welcome the doyenne of the French far right, Marine Le Pen, and the interested media and the noisy attentions of Unite Against Fascism, thoughts turn to last year's kerfuffle when the undistinguished guest was Dominique Strauss-Kahn. What happened then? Well, things became rumbustious. Indeed the minutes from the inquest conducted by the union afterwards complain of a "mini riot", and suggest it was forced to shell out £8,000 on security. The bursar, who blamed the student union for whipping up the rage, was most aggrieved and called for students to be landed with the bill. All very unfortunate and, some would say, unnecessary. The event comes and goes but recriminations can last for years.
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