Parliament's reputation brought low
The fate of nations, of monarchs and of the British people have been sealed in the Commons.
Yet now the reputation of the mother of all parliaments has been brought low by rules written and exploited here by claims for a kitkat, a tin of pet food and a bottle of shampoo... for TVs, furnishings and mortgages for the second homes of those who represent us.
Nothing revealed today has been enough to trigger an investigation let alone a resignation. Some of the headlines suggesting wrongdoing do not stand up to close scrutiny.
However, once again there is evidence aplenty of overclaiming; of playing the system to extract every penny possible and of attempts to get the taxpayer to pay for things that almost everyone else would be expected to pay for themselves.
Once again the gap between the reactions of politicians and the public has been stark.
Those whose expenses have been revealed claim either to be following the rules or to have made administrative errors. The prime minister was joined in blaming the system by the leaders of both main opposition parties who know their MPs will be next in the firing line.
What no-one said was sorry. And this on a day when M&S publicly apologised for the somewhat lesser misdemeanour of - charging more for bigger bras