On the one hand I find this a nice backwards-compatible extension of divmod(). On the other hand I've coded this use case with separate divmod() calls and never had any trouble getting it right. So I think this doesn't address a real need, and it conflicts with the need to avoid unnecessary growth of the language. Explaining it (especially why it works backward) takes some effort, and I don't want to do that to all the book authors etc.
--Guido van Rossum (home page: http://www.python.org/%7Eguido/)