One hesitates to guess what was on Black's mind as he walked up Spadina Avenue to the journalistic offices of HuffPost and AOL, but he must have been slightly uneasy or wary of his reception -- would he be shunned, welcomed or ignored? Whatever concerns he may have had evaporated immediately. He was an instant rock star.
I have no reservation about saying I'm glad he's back in the country. With Conrad Black's return we have one of our own to obsess over, a person with real world accomplishments and who speaks a far more amusing variant of English. I'm just grateful we have a domestic entity worth the breath and energy we're expending.
Like him or not, approve of him or not, despair of him or not, Conrad Black is as Canadian as maple syrup and a hockey stick, and neither a threat nor a danger to fellow Canadians -- unlike, say, Omar Khadr.
It is an appalling system and no one in America is safe from its destructiveness, often capriciously directed by morally corrupt officials enjoying an absolute immunity. In this election year, no one who is audible has spoken of any of this. There are 48 million Americans with a record, and about a million more every year. The reckoning is coming.