Conrad Black On Convict Black: It's a Hard Knock LifeS

Former media mogul Conrad Black — who was recently released on bond from his six-plus year prison sentence for stealing millions of dollars from his businesses — has penned a column for Toronto's National Post. Hint: prison is unfair!

Black, ever the smooth, cunning businessman, starts the column off with a strong jab at America's justice system, while also professing his innocence:

In my 28 months as a guest of the U.S. government, I often wondered how my time in that role would end. I never expected that I would have to serve the whole term, though I was, and am, psychologically prepared to do so, now that I have learned more of the fallibility of American justice, which does convict many people, who, like me, would never dream of committing a crime in a thousand years.

Of course he wouldn't have to serve his full term... he's an old white man who stole money (not Madoff money, but still). Parole boards and judges love guys like Black. The rest of the piece delivers, too. For instance, Black dutifully calls his wife "most evenings," and does crossword puzzles before bed. When he got word of his pending release, Black was excited and a steady flow of admirers dropped by to say goodbye. He wants you to know that he's down, that he was The Man up in The Joint:

The Mafiosi, the Colombian drug dealers, (including a senator with whom I had a special greeting as a fellow member of a parliamentary upper house), the American drug dealers, high and low, black, white, and Hispanic; the alleged swindlers, hackers, pornographers, credit card fraudsters, bank robbers, and even an accomplished airplane thief; the rehabilitated and unregenerate, the innocent and the guilty, and in almost all cases the grossly over-sentenced, streamed in steadily for hours, to make their farewells.

Damn, Conrad Black has some street cred! I wonder if all those suckers kissed the hand of greatness, as they should have. Then Black's screed goes off on some sort of indictment of America's justice system, which yeah, is pretty screwed in a lot of ways, but boo hoo for the unfair treatment of Conrad Black. It's hard being a white collar criminal these days.

[Mugshot via TSG]