Petraeus’ Rules for Living, Amended Edition

The first two General David Petraeus Rules for Living–at least as captured by his former mistress–are

1. Lead by example from the front of the formation. Take your performance personally—if you are proud to be average, so too will be your troops.

2. A leader must provide a vision—clear and achievable “big ideas” combined in a strategic concept—and communicate those ideas throughout the entire organi­zation and to all other stakeholders.

In this, his moment of crisis, Petraeus appears to have amended those rules to “don’t make a move until your high profile reputation rehabilitator tells you to.”

He has hired Robert B. Barnett, the Washington superlawyer, to handle his future, and friends say he has not even ruled out becoming a talking head on television.

[snip]

Their house, on a verdant Arlington street of $1 million and $2 million homes — for security reasons, the address is listed in no public property records — is expected to be Mr. Petraeus’s center of operations at least until the first of next year, the earliest his friends say he could venture out from the wilderness with a Barnett-approved new job or position.

No matter. Hiding in your home until the PR hack says “jump”–even resorting to a stationary bike when, in the past, the General made a point of running through some of the most dangerous cities in the world–can still be wedged into General David Petraeus Rules for Living. There’s this:

4. There is an exception to every rule, standard operating procedure, and poli­cy; it is up to leaders to determine when exceptions should be made and to ex­plain why they made them.

While he’s cooped up in the “wilderness” of million dollar homes in Arlington, VA, Petraeus just has to think of some reason he has made an exception to his rules about vision and leading by example.

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35 Responses to Petraeus’ Rules for Living, Amended Edition

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel @lizzwinstead Get the feeling there was some quick and broad and well-financed coordination on that response.
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emptywheel @JasonLeopold Bingo. Saw that. Need to go back to that one. Timing is very interesting too. And the FoPo withholding.
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emptywheel @JasonLeopold Oh, I remember. So this is CIA White PAper and the other is the DOJ White Paper? Or just that DOJ didn't refer other to CIA?
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emptywheel @JasonLeopold Ah thanks.
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emptywheel RT @TondaMacC: The easiest form of terrorism: no need for sophisticated plots, or training, or financing, by @shephardm: http://t.co/DSQdPF
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emptywheel @JasonLeopold Which one is that on--11/11 or 5/11?
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emptywheel RT @JasonLeopold: JUST FILED: CIA declaration in my #FOIA case re: CIA white ppr turned over to me justifying assassination of Awlaki https…
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emptywheel @maassp Thanks for pointing that out. It has been a largely male celebration of a great career.
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emptywheel @liferstate Not convinced any cohort is succeeding at this point.
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emptywheel @liferstate Good point. But in the meantime our collective pants-peeing will prevent any effort to address climate change.
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emptywheel @maassp I was interested in your comment abt being white male--his tributes are mostly from white men. Bc of the time?
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emptywheel RT @abc7newsBayArea: JUST IN: Dallas nurse Amber Vinson who contracted Ebola from Thomas Duncan is virus-free. http://t.co/mNDQTT1jd3 http:…
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