After the Evening Standard’s Russian proprietor punched out a fellow billionaire on live television, the newspaper has unveiled a robust editorial policy which will see it ‘smash in the faces of any newspapers who give us any shit whatsoever.’
Alexander Lebedev, owner of the Independent and Evening Standard, punched businessman Sergei Polonsky with two right hooks, sending him flying from his chair and announcing once and for all that traditional British journalism will no longer tolerate attacks on its integrity.
Lebedev spoke after the incident, telling reporters, “No-one looks at my editorial policy like that, he was taking a liberty.”
The Independent took a similarly strong line. “While as a serious broadsheet we in no way tolerate violence, we hereby underline our commitment to the principle of freedom of expression as demonstrated by Mr Lebvedev,” said the newspaper in an editorial entitled “You’re going home in a fucking ambulance”.
Lebedev televised punch
This change in tone will only confirm fears that foreign ownership of the press will lead to a decline in quality, an outcome previously considered unthinkable for the Evening Standard.
Despite all the furore it was largely business as usual as the Standard yesterday, with the front page displaying nothing but a huge headline reading “Who are you fucking looking at?” plus details of a competition offering a give-away prize of ‘a knee in the groin for every reader.’