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Price of lifting Ed's spirits

The MPs' expenses row continues to be the story that just keeps on giving.

No less so last week when it was revealed just what the Schools Secretary Ed Balls likes to spend taxpayers' money on.

According to records that have now been made public, Mr Balls claimed Pounds 7.10 for a lunch, which included a chicken and sweetcorn sandwich and, rivetingly, a packet of peanuts.

But perhaps most intriguingly, he also put in a Pounds 7.99 claim for a book called Reasons to be Cheerful.

Why would Mr Balls need cheering up, you might ask?

Rows over the future of Sats, Labour party infighting and potential public spending cuts would leave many a minister in need of the comfort of a good book and a bag of peanuts.

Other titles he might have claimed for could be Happy Ever After, The End of the Line and Bye Bye Blackboard.

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