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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Archant Drops Its Trousers

Statement by Sir (nearly) Julian Pipeshaft, Mayor of Hackney:

I would like to congratulate the editors and staff of the Hackney Groveller and East London Massage Parlour News for refusing the initial adverts, and to congratulate the executives of the Archant newspaper group for their promptness in fully comprehending the consequences that pursuing their earlier course of action would have had for the company's finances. This decision is the best of both worlds - it allows Archant to appear to be backing down quite reasonably in response to local community pressure and makes me look like a decisive and radical campaigning leader just as I did at the end of the recent betting shop farago that I was originally responsible for creating.

The freedom of the press allows the media to choose what it does and does not publish and to take a particular editorial stance on an issue; the concept of freedom of speech cannot be used to claim that a newspaper must publish all material offered to it with the only criterion being legality.

Those out electioneering for the upcoming London mayoral election have invariably encountered disbelief or disgust when the issue is raised on the doorstep. The many messages of protest that I have seen from residents, and people's readiness to sign the petition organised by Labour councillors, are an endorsement of Archant's decision to align themselves with the views of the overwhelming majority of the local community.

On the other hand, residents I have polled have expressed considerable interest in seeing the photos of an unnamed Hackney Councillor in flagrante digitus down at Satchmo's lap dancing club and as part of my arrangement with Archant I shall be supplying said pictures shortly."

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