Friday, July 13, 2007

Conrad Black and his "royal legacy" in Chicago

If anyone brought the Chicago Sun-Times to its ethical knees, it was Conrad Black. During his reign of terror, he undermined the newspapers integrity and launched vicious partisan issues campaigns that ignored journalistic principles and instead championed his pet causes.

So why are we not surprised by Black's pathetic conduct during the Federal Court room where he faces possible conviction on 16 criminal counts of fraud, tax evasion, racketeering and obstruction of justice -- things not normally associated with a "newspaper publisher," or with someone who has been "Knighted" byt he Queen -- the Queen of England, I should clarify.

Here is an Associated Press photograph of Black giving reporters the finger -- not even trying to be coy -- as he entered the Dirsken Federal Building courthouse on July 10, 2007.

Black is an idiot. He looks like a school yard bully. I remember reading a two page long column by his wife, Barbara Amiel -- a two page long column with no pictures -- arguing the most extremist view of the Middle East conflict.

Fortunately, the Chicago Sun-Times has shaken off Black at least for enough years to return to being a very prestigious and serious newspaper -- the reporters there, many my friends, deserve to work in an environment of journalistic excellence rather than under Black's black shadow.

The jury seems to be tussling with some serious issues. Charges involving tax evasion and racketeering are not always easy to sort out and they have been deliberating 11 days after saying they were having a hard time sorting through one or several of the 16 counts.

That's okay. Have faith, this jerk will get what he deserves, royally, hopefully.

-- Ray Hanania

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