The Best Defense

What Donald Rumsfeld doesn't know about living isn't worth knowing. Or unknowing

Illustration by Tomasz Walenta for TIME; Body: FPG / Getty Images; Rumsfeld: Larry Downing / Reuters / Corbis

I don't live by any rules: no religion, no philosophy, no stopping at signs in parking lots, where I'm pretty sure they are not enforceable. But I've had a lot less impact than Donald Rumsfeld. So I decided to live for three days by the advice in his new book, Rumsfeld's Rules: Leadership Lessons in Business, Politics, War, and Life--a collection of quotes and wisdom the two-time Secretary of Defense wrote on index cards, stuffed into shoe boxes and distributed to the Ford Administration.

One thing Rumsfeld's Rules didn't do was make the first two paragraphs of this column better, since...

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