Feeds

Carly of La Mancha

Tough Choices is a tough sell

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Fiorina lugs a few skeletons out of the closet such as new information on her broken first marriage. Lucent and HP's public relations handlers made this topic off-limits during interviews with Fiorina. In the book, Fiorina dedicates a three page chapter to the Ex. She never explicitly says what occurred but hints that, "One weekend I discovered that he wasn't at the office working as he'd said he was" and later that the Ex had taken more than his fair share of financial control over their combined accounts.

I could not believe that someone I thought I knew so well, someone I had trusted and loved, could behave in this way. It was the first time I fully understood how threatened some men are by capable, successful women. I would experience it again and again in the workplace, but to discover it in by marriage was a searing revelation.

I had been raised to believe that what you are is God's gift to you. What you make of yourself is your gift to God. How could someone who loved you resent that? In retrospect, this all sounds hopelessly naive, but to this day I underestimate people's capacity to abuse my trust and the insecurity that sometimes drives them.

That's some juicy stuff, and it's as good as Tough Choices gets. The only other skeletons that Fiorina brings out are thing such as her childhood insecurities or later her adult insecurities. Both of which she overcomes through strength of will, determination, pluck, intelligence, directness, business savvy, good looks, vision and all the other qualities that Fiorina sees as making her so adept at facing tough choices and thriving.

[Will Fiorina go into politics? Hear her dodge the question here.]

Oh, Fiorina does also include a photo of herself well-soaped in the bathtub with her stepdaughters but that seemed far more desperate than riveting.

Instead of proving that she learned anything from the HP experience, Fiorina leaves the reader with a helping of hokum.

You're told things such as,

There was a time in history when we could assume that because someone lacked opportunity, they lacked potential. We now know this is not true. Every single person has potential inside them, and the right leadership, the right technology and the right collaboration can unlock that potential.

Fiorina speaks at a Mountain View bookstore

And.

In the twenty-first century, for the time in human history, anyone can lead. Of course injustice and prejudice and inequity are still realities. Nevertheless, today leadership has nothing to do with title or money or power. Leadership is not about gender or the color of one's skin; it is not about physical gifts or national origin. WIth the right support and the right opportunities, anyone can lead from anywhere at any time.

Dare it be suggested that Fiorina has become too enamored with her own "we live in a connected world" rhetoric?

Fiorina seems to think that she really gets at the meat of the whole HP debacle. But she never does. She dances around the criticism of her decision making and continues to place blame on others. It's the kind of maneuvering you would expect from a politician - the type of creature that refuses to admit any wrongs even in a memoir.

Fiorina spoke in Clintonian proportions and writes in the same Clintonian tradition. She even had the same lawyer as Clinton broker her book deal.

If you want to read how Fiorina the quixotic politician in waiting views her life, pick up Tough Choices. It's certainly a clear, relatively concise exploration of Fiorina's youth, rise at AT&T, time at HP and ouster. Just beware of the blinders. They hurt. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
'Urika': Cray unveils new 1,500-core big data crunching monster
6TB of DRAM, 38TB of SSD flash and 120TB of disk storage
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
SDI wars: WTF is software defined infrastructure?
This time we play for ALL the marbles
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Oracle hires former SAP exec for cloudy push
'We know Larry said cloud was gibberish, and insane, and idiotic, but...'
Symantec backs out of Backup Exec: Plans to can appliance in Jan
Will still provide support to existing customers
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.