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Mansbridge One on One: Conrad Black

Peter Mansbridge is considered by many to be one of the most trusted faces in Canadian news. In his half-hour interview program called Mansbridge One on One, which still airs on CBC-TV, the renowned anchor and journalist speaks with fascinating people from all walks of life. Since it began airing in 1999, Mansbridge has interviewed politicians, business leaders, authors, activists, artists, journalists, and an eclectic variety of other various notable newsmakers.

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"My image is a Frankenstein monster that's been lurching about for 25 years, and I have no idea what animates it at times," says Conrad Black in this 1999 episode of Mansbridge One on One. Black has recently accused Prime Minister Jean Chrétien of abusing his powers by blocking Black's entry into the British House of Lords. When Peter Mansbridge asks Black why he wants to be a British Lord in the first place, Black simply responds, "It's a nice honour."
• Born on Aug. 25, 1944, Conrad Black first demonstrated his entrepreneurial spirit as a 14-year-old student, when he made $1,400 by selling his classmates stolen exams at Toronto's elite Upper Canada College. He was expelled.

• While in his 20s, Black began buying small Canadian newspapers. By the 1990s, Black controlled 60 per cent of all Canadian newspaper titles, as well as hundreds of dailies in the U.S., England, Australia and Israel. • Prime Minister Jean Chrétien opposed Black's appointment to the British House of Lords in 1999, pointing to the Nickle Resolution of 1919 which ruled that foreign governments could not grant honours that carry a title or privilege to Canadians. Black challenged this in court, but lost.

• To get the title, Black ended up renouncing his Canadian citzenship and officially became Lord Black of Crossharbour in 2001.

• In 2007 Conrad Black was found guilty of obstruction of justice and three counts of mail fraud in a Chicago court, and was sentenced to 6½ years in prison. He had tried to get his Canadian citizenship back in 2006, but to no avail. Because he wasn't a Canadian citizen, Black had no chance of being able to serve his sentence in a Canadian prison where he would have been eligible for parole sooner than in the U.S. He also was not allowed to enter Canada while awaiting his sentencing.

Medium: Television
Program: Mansbridge One on One
Broadcast Date: Sept. 12, 1999
Guest(s): Conrad Black
Interviewer: Peter Mansbridge
Duration: 22:02

Last updated: May 17, 2013

Page consulted on September 11, 2014

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