The BBC report on Labour's latest assault on civil liberties -- one of the bedrocks, my friends, of social justice -- provided a notable juxtaposition of views.
A latterday outspoken rebel (they allow one amongst their ranks), the ubiquitous John McDonnell, is quoted as saying: "There will be widespread consternation among our supporters in the country seeing a Labour government prepared to use every tactic available in its determination to crush essential civil liberties, which have been won by the labour movement over generations."
In early versions of the story, it was immediately followed by a quotation from an outspoken rebel of a former era, Tony Benn, who said something along the lines that he didn't think he'd see the day that Magna Carta was repealed by a Labour government.
Taken together, they imply the Tolpuddle Martyrs were kindred spirits with the lords who loitered around King John at Runymede. It's a tasty mythology of Britain's radical tradition.
Let's face it: Labour have never been strong on civil liberties, and tonight is just another testimony to that. Their commitment to liberty is even weaker than that to social justice. And, of course, they wouldn't admit there's a link between the two.