Petraeus for Dummies-An American Love Story


Claude, I have a new book for you to review, my friend exclaimed !
I want to make it into a movie. Can I email the screenplay over to you?
Sure, what is it called? I queried,

Petraeus for Dummies-An American Love Story

Ok, I say, I will look it over this weekend and give you my honest opinion.

Could you imagine a script that you are given to review for a potential movie production in which the following occurs:
It’s all about the top general of the armed US forces; a true American Hero.

The president and the congress give you constant accolades for your exceptional organizational skills and military acumen.
You have a successful marriage of 37 years with your now Schlubby wife.

You meet a younger attractive biographer who is also in the military and begin to have an ilicit affair with her.

You are subsequently rewarded with a promotion and made the head of the CIA by a grateful country for your innovative “surge” strategy in troubled Iraq.

Meanwhile, you stay in communication with the new girlfriend biographer by using a stealth system of having access to each others draft box on the google cloud email system. So you never have to send traceable emails.

Concurrently as you begin your CIA duties the American Embassy is attacked in Libya and the Ambassador is murdered by a coordinated terrorist attack in which there was ”too little – too late” CIA protection.

Then, your Bio girlfriend begins to notice how much time you and the Wifey are spending away with a Florida socialite and starts writing nasty anonymous emails to the socialite telling her to stay away from her man.

The socialite who becomes spooked, then calls in a friend who is also a renown
investigator with the FBI and asks him to look into the matter. This same FBI agent BTW was sending shirtless pictures of himself to said socialite.

He ( Mr. Shirtless the FBI Agent) then discovers that the emails came from a woman/writer/west point graduate/military officer who is covertly exchanging documents and classified information with the fore-mentioned former 4 star general and who is now head of the CIA.

He also discovers that the socialite is in communication with enticing emails to another 4 star general and who is now head of the armed forces in Afghanistan and who also happens to be the best friend of the CIA Chief and is suppose to be the new head of Nato.

You call in your bosses in the FBI and state that you have uncovered a potential spy scandal of huge proportions and thousands of questionable files have been exchanged between all the parties concerned. (The files are later discovered to have no security information and are only related to the biography). Your FBI boss then decides to stick it to the CIA (a competitive spy agency) and open a major investigation. He requests judicial warrants and everyone’s computers and email correspondence is seized.

The FBI head however neglects to inform the US Attorney General or The Presidents Chief of Staff of the major spy investigation. Later the CIA has been informed of the investigation and the chief resigns as head of the CIA.

The Congress then calls for an full investigation. This occurs coincidentally at the same time there is a Congressional hearing on the Libya hearings in which the CIA failed to protect the US Ambassador.

My friend sends me a text and asks how I like the screenplay so far.

I text back ” Sorry, It’s a little too far fetched;I don’t think anyone would believe that a series of concurrent events like this could ever happen-pure fiction, Incredulous”

The End or just the Beginning?

Petraeus for Dummies


Making money with Lease Purchasing (before Xmas).



Claude Diamond Said this Was the Ugliest House He Ever Saw!!!
I Love It! This is a Beautiful House!!

Hey, don’t laugh! I did this deal 18 days before Christmas.

I bought this ~1380sf house in Birmingham, Alabama as an REO (Bank Owned Property) from CitiBank at $5,250.00 and quickly sold it to an investor/buyer. The great thing was I bought and sold it – sight unseen with just a bunch of photos from the local Listing Agent and a little research on the internet. I had the listing agent send me photos of both the good and the bad of the property which I used in my advertising. I also had him put a lockbox on the door and a sign in the window. It took a little bit of work to find some good local Contractors and Handyman for some estimates for repairs. My plan was to flip it without doing any repairs but leave it up to the Buyer with some good numbers and references.

The Tax Assessment value was $58,000.00 and it needed about $10-15K in repairs.
I sold it for $22,000.00 with $5,000.00 down and created a note for monthly payments of $161.00 for 15 years. Notice the down payment I received was just shy of what I paid for the property! But what I loved about this deal is I left money on the table for my Buyer to be able to rent-out or sell outright at a profit as well….a Win-Win! A great way to do business.

I also sold it as an assignable deal to the investor with my approval on the new buyer. If a Buyer defaults in the future, I will simply take the house back and start over and sell it again with a nice size down payment…after it has been fixed up! And over the years it will appreciate in value from the low point from when I bought it.

Claude was an awesome mentor to me on this property and helped me through some of the “ins and outs”. He especially helped me keep what I call a “balanced focus”. A good mentor/coach is so important, even for the more experienced investors. I would be more than willing to help others with mentoring as well.

It is ugly, but the little deals add up and are great for anyone. The deals are everywhere right now, and you can easily make it a “Win-Win” for both you and the Buyer which is so important.

Some last words…don’t hesitate! The deals are plentiful right now, just go out and do it, you will be well rewarded! Don’t let anything get in the way of your dream.


Chuck Lidtka
Renton, WA
“Sprint to the End!”