Conrad Black has been found guilty and now faces the possibility of a lengthy prison sentence. Not surprisingly, he has apparently been asking his friends for help and advice as evidenced by the following recent e-mails:
TO: Lord Black of Crossharbour
FROM: Paris Hilton
How nice of you to write. I’ve never heard of you but my daddy says you’re one of us so I’m glad to answer your questions. Since I was only in the "slammer" for three weeks, I’m not sure what to tell you about adjusting to prison life. In my experience, so long as you have access to a phone and the media, the time passes pretty quickly. And a word to the wise: if you bat your eyes and shake your booty, you’ll probably get a few extra perks. At least that’s how it worked in my prison.
Hey, tough break. I know what you’re going through what with the jail term, the fine and the public humiliation. But listen, if you’ve got any dirt on Bush or Cheney, there’s a "Get Out of Jail Free" card waiting for you at The White House. Even if you don’t know any secrets, just pretend that you do. They’re so scared now that they’re handing out pardons and commutations like they’re candy.
Sorry to hear about that guilty verdict, Blackie. Sure thought you were going to beat the rap. I guess it’s a lot tougher than when I was screwing around with my SEC filings for Harken Energy. In case you didn’t know, the statute of limitations has run out on that one. So nice try, Blackie, but it looks like you’ll be doing time. See you when you get out.
TO: Mr. Black
FROM: Henry Kissinger
Thanks again for the Hollinger directorship. It was great fun doing nothing for all those fees. However, I’m afraid I can’t help you out. But if you’re even half as clever as I am, I’m sure you’ll find a solution. After all, I managed to get the Nobel Peace Prize while secretly bombing Cambodia. Surely you can beat a simple fraud charge.
TO: Lord Black
FROM: Martha Stewart
It is indeed an honor to hear from you even if you never deigned to write to me while I was in prison. But never mind. Us cons have to stick together, n’est-ce pas? Now as for your request for advice, the following tips might come in handy:
1. Don’t use fancy words.
2. Nobody likes a know-it-all.
3. Everybody loves a jailhouse lawyer.
4. Black accessories go with orange.
5. Bring your own truffles.
6. A toothbrush can be made into a decorative festive shiv.
TO: Mr. Conrad Black
FROM: Random House
Thank you for your recent book proposal. After careful consideration, we regret that we must pass on your suggested autobiography. Given the surfeit of white collar criminal autobiographies, we don’t feel that there is room in next year’s catalogue for another one. If you should succeed on appeal or if you are accused of murder, please try us again.
TO: Barbara Amiel
FROM: Your husband
[Message undeliverable. No known recipient at this address.]