Newtonian law of power's pull on business
Some 14 years ago, when it was clear that Labour was heading for victory in the looming general election, I asked the then deputy prime minister Michael Heseltine whether he was concerned that so many business leaders were cosying up to Tony Blair.
Not at all, he said. It's almost a Newtonian law that business gravitates to power.
They would be letting their companies down if they failed to fawn to the prime minister-in-waiting, given that government has the ability both to award valuable contracts to the private sector and also to seriously muller business through misguided taxes and regulations.
Oh, and there are also those nice knighthoods and political peerages that a friendly premier might be able to nudge in a business leader's direction.
In a way, therefore, it may be a bit surprising that we haven't seen more business leaders come out for Cameron and Osborne.
From that I haven't concluded that they don't rate them or dislike their policies - just that they are taking a pragmatic view that the outcome of the election is less of a done deal than was the case prior to the 1997 election.
So how to assess today's letter from 23 business leaders backing the Tories' proposal to partly reverse the government's plan to increase National Insurance?
First things first: I don't doubt the business leaders' sincerity when they warn that the NI increase will precipitate job cuts.
In fact I haven't met a single person in business who is celebrating this tax rise - and the main business lobby groups have today thrown their weight behind a campaign to replace the NI rise with public-sector cost savings.
But I should also point out that there wasn't a single signatory who made me think "wow, didn't expect him to be on a list of proponents of a Tory policy".
That doesn't mean that they are all card-carrying members of the Tory party or donors to the Conservatives (some are).
It's just that I've observed for some months the likes of Sir Stuart Rose of M&S and Justin King of Sainsbury becoming quite chummy with what you might call New Conservatives', or the leadership clique around David Cameron.
And in the business circles in which I mix, there's been lots of chatter in recent months that one or both could find themselves on the Tory benches of the Lords or doing a job for a Tory administration.
Also, there was a chunk of the letter that gave me a powerful sense of deja vu (or deja entendu, to be more precise).
It's this bit:
"The state must look to enable our public servants to make savings. This can be done by removing the blizzard of irrelevant objectives, restrictive working practices, arcane procurement rules and Whitehall interference."
Now I have heard something very similar from the lips of New Conservatives' favourite businessman, Simon Wolfson, chief executive of Next - who happens to be one of the signatories, and is very close to the Cameron/Osborne gang.
None of which is to say this letter of endorsement of an important Tory policy from some business heavyweights is trivial - just that it isn't terribly surprising.
That said, it would be wholly inappropriate to feel any pain on Labour's behalf, since in the past both Gordon Brown and Tony Blair milked for all it was worth any backing they received from a half-credible entrepreneur.
But it's worth noting that the interests of business and the interests of the country are not identical.
Some of the companies on the list, such as Diageo and Xstrata, derive most of their revenue outside the UK, for example.
And the owners of most of them are a thoroughly international bunch.
Actually I should point out that the business leaders are writing in a personal capacity, and not on behalf of their companies.
Which I suppose may influence the weight you attach to their views (for better or worse).