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Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Sunday Edict: Santa Exists, or Else

In just the latest example of how very neo-Soviet Russia has already become, AFP reports that the Kremlin is now dictating the content of TV advertisements. You can't, for instance, say there is no Santa Claus.

Russia's government has ridden to the rescue of children by banning a television ad that declares Father Christmas does not exist, the daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta announced Thursday. The Federal Anti-monopoly Service ruled that the advertisement run by a network of electronics stores called Eto breaks a law against discrediting parents, the government-run newspaper said. The advertisement declares bluntly "that Father Frost does not exist", according to the report, referring to Russia's version of the gift-bearing, red-coated old man. "It means that parents are not telling the truth to children when they say Father Frost exists. In that way the ad induces negative relations between children and their parents," the service's deputy director, Andrei Kashevarov, was quoted as saying. Russia's law on advertising bans "discrediting parents and educators, undermining children's trust in them". Eto defended the ad, saying it was aimed at middle-aged people.

It's. Barbaric.

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