Let’s all raise a glass to Keith Vaz and his band of hairy diadems from the fart-cured backbenches of the Mother of Parliaments. Keef, whose interests include hanging around the BBC’s Millbank studios in the hope some desperate hack will interview him for hospital radio, has decided that his next noble crusade is booze.

I’m not referring to the traditional bout of submarining that precedes the customary 3am ejection of one of the House’s most prominent members from Annie’s Bar in a process known as the Vazectomy. No, this is a not entirely hypocrisy-free assault on the off-trade from a government that itself foisted 24-hour boozing on a Great British Public that couldn’t have given a collective toss.

Amusingly, the Vaz-been’s strongest argument appeared to be that the nation’s retailers had been so successful in bringing down prices that they should be punished for their achievement. His further allegation – that customers were ‘tanking up’ at Tesco before popping up to the Cock & Beaver in time for happy hour – may even have some semblance of truth.

But hold ye hard, mateys. Let’s skip forward five years to a time when Vaz’s self-serving termites have had their way, and booze prices have been hiked to the punitive levels beloved of our sober cousins the Finns, Danes and Norwegians. Luckily, we thirsty parliamentarians are protected from this by the taxpayer, but the chav in the street will have to cough up . In other words, we’ve returned to the halcyon 1970s, when Old Labour ruled , there was no alcohol-fuelled and we all lived in gingerbread houses. Maybe that’s what Vaz reckons – as for myself I was being subjected to the zealous ministrations of Father Rafferty, but I digress.

Let’s face it, is your average hoodie going to let price hikes get between them and a night in the gutter? No, they’ll nick their booze like we all did.