Black Watch: Today’s Top Stories
The New York Post, famed for its outrageous headlines (who can forget “Headless Body in Topless Bar”?), crystallized our hero’s travails in bold type this morning: “Conrad Black’s Plane Chutzpah.” The pun refers to Black’s offhanded remark to a group of prospective shareholders concerned about the cost of Hollinger International’s private jet. “I can,” he reportedly opined, “have a 747 if I want.” The fact is that every time Conrad Black opens his mouth in or out of the courtroom, he’s doing himself down.
Granted, in theory the jury won’t have read his remarks to the press, but they have heard his dreams of jumbo jet flight, his attitude toward shareholders (idiots whose “asses” he’d like to “blow off”), and his apparent self-regard in comparing himself to Shakespeare’s Caesar “minus the last act.” His champions in the court and in the press are already crying that the prosecution is playing on class prejudice. That’s excuse-making plane (I couldn’t resist) and simple. Conrad Black is his own worst enemy, and those who would side with him have had to play around that obstacle since day one.
Conrad Black’s Plane Chutzpah [NY Post]Defendant dismissed concerns from shareholders, jurors told [Chicago Tribune]Investor ‘idiocy’ shrugged off [Toronto Star]Ex-exec recalls Black’s anger [Chicago Sun-Times]Shareholder concerns ‘foolish,’ Black wrote [National Post]Black enlisted Trump, trial told [Globe and Mail]Black held shareholder activism in disdain, former executive tells court [Globe and Mail]Black’s lawyer protests at perks and privilege strategy [Times of London]Jury hears Black’s rants against investors [Guardian]