The Petraeus Scandal-The Broader Implications

by Olivia LaRosa
November 16, 2012

Every Thursday night, I speak with my closest political friends in Skype. This has been a ritual for 6 years now. I enjoy the interaction with people from diverse disciplines. We have an electrical engineer/programmer, a computer graphics whiz, a rare-books librarian, legal eagles, sociologists, economists, and so on.

We discussed the Petraeus scandal last night. I started out with, “Holy Cow. This man was the head of the CIA, the biggest spy operation ever known to humankind, and he thought that Gmail drafts were private. Talk about a bad combination of ignorance and hubris.”

Then there’s the Kelley’s, the couple with the showy mansion they can’t afford and Mrs. with the slutty dresses, who are in deep debt because they entertain so lavishly. Why did Kelley bring in her FBI boytoy to blow the whistle? Was she expecting a big payoff for her hostessing gig? Why were they all acting like celebrities?

Why was Gen. Allen, the head of operations in Afghanistan, spending all his time planning lavish parties when our soldiers are dying in a futile war? Who came to those parties? Defense contractors?

No one is at the wheel. The corruption goes from top to bottom.

Rumor has it that “swinging” and spouse-swapping started in and is endemic in the military. I see it as a way to maintain unit cohesion when the spouse is deployed. Not all that bad when one thinks about it. But are these people’s heads so big that they no longer feel obligated to work and lead their organizations?

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