LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – If Conrad Black thought prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald was a lingering piece of gum beneath his brogue, wait till he re-meets Peter C. Newman. The self-described “establishment’s court jester” has written a 16-pager on the actionable Brahmin in the coming-soon issue of TL–and it is, by all accounts, juicy, dirty, gossipy, salacious and titillating.
Newman is also no-punches-pulling about saying outright that he thinks Mr. Black is guilty –and that he is now paying for it in the cruel court of public opinion.
The not-so-cub reporter said as much to me when I chatted briefly with him at the Canadian Journalism Foundation dinner some months ago at the Fairmont Royal York, and he’s saying it again now.
From the article: “All through the trial, he held himself together, like safety glass in a shattered windshield. It was a remarkable performance, but that’s all it was: a performance. The jury’s verdict will ensure that Conrad Black–and Barbara Amiel — are ostracized, punished, and felled where it hurts them the most: in the court of public opinion. We no longer hate or envy them. We pity them. And that must be the most cruel punishment of all.”
The piece is said to be the longest article in Toronto Life history, and was described by an insider hack as one that flaunts a “panoramic view.” Moreover, the mag — which is edited by avid Black watcher John Macfarlane — has gone all out by producing a cover illustrated by famed New Yorker illustrator AnitaKunz.
Not making too subtle a point of it, she has depicted Conrad as Humpty Dumpty on the wall, with his former lieutenant DavidRadler sitting next to him as a rat. The lead-in to the article, meanwhile, has Conrad falling off the wall, with the two Eddies (Greenspon and Genson, his lawyers) and Barbara (dressed as Little Bo Peep, bien sur) trying to put him back together again. It’s all incorrigibly gleeful.