Everyone is shocked at Carly.
Maybe even Carly.
Something came together in my mind just now as I was re-acquainting myself with her tenure at Hewlett-Packard.
And it combined with something she said about some horrible gaffes during her abysmal Senate campaign in California.
Given the track record and/or scandal attached to every Hewlett-Packard CEO since Carly, along with the financial collapse of the tech sector during and after her tenure—how can anyone draw an objective bead on her time there?
The (usually) hyperbolic blowback to her and what she tried and sometimes succeeded in doing at H-P is going to be difficult for her to overcome.
Along with that doomed Senate race in California.
“I had just come off cancer treatment,” she says of her 2010 campaign, a difficulty compounded by the death of her daughter in October 2009. “I was sick and heartsick.”
She’s gotten past that, obviously, but how did she then become such a world-class communicator?
There’s no denying she has. I mean, did you see her interview on MSNBC with Andrea Mitchell?
She puts on the same level of performance no matter where she goes or who she talks to.
Her trolling of Hillary Clinton is a sight to behold.
I didn’t always feel this way.
When she first gained people’s notice, I immediately thought of that California campaign and thought, “Good luck with this venture, Carly.”
Even as a vice presidential possibility, people told me they’d prefer someone who’d proved themselves as a successful candidate.
Or as a successful—not angrily fired and bitterly denounced—big time executive.
And yet, here she is, hugely, surprisingly successful so far.
It’s because she proved herself.
Not in the modern sense of the word, meaning validation or demonstration of her worth or expertise.
But a definition much older, and with special meaning to me.
Being proved as being tried in fire.
Entering the ordeal weak, compromised.
Emerging strong, confident.
Vindicated, not because of what you accomplished, but because of what you’ve become.
And here the concept is, in my favorite context:
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice in so far as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
1 Peter 4:12-13 (RSV)
After Hewlett-Packard, after California, after cancer, after losing a loved one—
What is Andrea Mitchell’s questioning—what is anyone’s doubts—to Carly Fiorina?
She has been proved as few have.
If you are her foe, you will doubt her at your peril.