We hear a lot about accountability these days. So who’s more accountable, the elected representative or the corporate head? There is a must-read piece in today’s Wall Street Journal (and even though it’s early in the morning, I am ready to confer upon it my coveted Lead of the Day award):

The stunning fall of Hewlett-Packard’s Mark Hurd is further proof of the precarious life of the modern CEO, and it got us thinking: What if Mr. Hurd had been a Member of Congress?

Hurd’s offense was allegedly lying about the use of $20,000 (or less) to cover a nonsexual relationship with a contractor. The contractor alleged sexual harassment. He was cleared of that charge but the other transgression came to light in the course of the investigation. Directors ousted a man who in five years had doubled HP’s capitalization.

The editorial compares the allegations against Mark Hurd and those against two members of Congress, Maxine Waters and Charlie Rangel. Both will have a public hearing, though there are indications that Rangel was offered a reprimand to settle the matter. Kicker:

 If Mr. Hurd wanted to have dinner with a comely contractor, he should have run for political office.

 I was on a TV show recently with somebody who said his healthcare was so important he didn’t want to trust private business. He wanted to turn it over to public officials.