Following the rich and famous to exotic locations in search of "a great picture" has always been good business for the gutter press and it seems that no low is too low for those organs of the populist print media which - whether readership- or ambulance-chasing - observe only one rule: money-shots sell newspapers and to hell with the rest.
Never mind, then, the damage - psychological as well as reputational -that wilful intrusion together with flagrant violations of privacy laws bring in their wake; never mind the embarrassment caused or the relationships broken; the hurt, the anger, the shame. Just mind the bottom line and the rest will take care of itself. Such is the hateful mantra of those with deep pockets and no moral compass worth speaking of. They are a disgrace to their profession and should be rooted out.
So, to be clear, we take absolutely no pleasure in putting these images before the public today. They are deeply offensive to our fundamental principles as well as wholly repugnant to our proper sensibilities. But unless this loathsome practice is exposed, nothing will be done to stop it. Besides, if we didn't publish these odious "snaps" some other less-responsible outlet would - even putting them on the worldwide interweb platform for all and sundry to see. No! Only by exposing these journalistic excesses and highlighting the trauma caused by an irresponsible abuse of press freedoms can we hope to bring matters to a head and stem the tide of filth which daily finds its way into the reading diet of millions across our county.
So, we take a risk - and knowingly. Some might say we are no better than those who commissioned and paid for these pictures (NB in conformity with our ethical business policy, they cost us nothing); some might add that by giving them wider exposure we are encouraging the very thing we seek to confound; that up to 4 extra people will see shocking images courtesy of an organ which should be seeking to protect them. And they may be right. These are murky moral waters and we claim no ground other than the moral high: we did not ask for these pictures to be taken, nor reward those who took them. We have merely offered them to the public as evidence of the lengths to which some newspapers will go to attract and feed the insatiable demands of their hapless readers. These are depths to which we assure our supporters we will never sink.
Sydling St Nicholas Sun editor Ron Nasty would doubtless defend his actions in dispatching his spineless voyeurs to all part of the globe as falling squarely within "the public interest". But what interest does the public have in seeing titillating photographs of a topless celebrity sporting her assets on a public beach or washing her privates in a luxury bathroom? Who wants to see pictures of her (admittedly fabulous) sea-salt-glistening, sun-kissed, 36FFF heaving breasts? Just whose debased and sordid appetites is this kind of imagery feeding?
We contend that the public is heartily sick of this whole wretched business; that the tide is turning and that, with our help, it will turn even quicker. But until it does, our Campaign of exposure, as well as our determination to "publish and be damned" and to "name and shame" those responsible "without fear or favour" will continue.
TOMORROW: Professor Thrupiece's underpants: did he really "go commando" in Cuba? Shocking picture evidence.
EXCLUSIVE: That S-LS picture in full: