Deletion of messages is absolute non sense. While I understand why one would like to modify messages, if used as a wrong weapon it completely take the fun out of the forum.
Wannawin I am completely with you when one doesn't want to interrupt the flow of topic. Not only as a writer. But also as a reader. However there is a difference between moderator and editor.
Instead of posting just a question, a solution as well from my end. What about a button on the top of the page that says Show editors picks. The topic starter can be the editor who can chose to exclude a post from that view. That ways the poster can always control the topic without deletion. One who wants to follow the thread like the topic starter wNts to follow it can chose this option which will hide unwanted posts. One who would like to see the entire thread can see the entire thread.