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Unformatted text preview: t every day of my life.”
Despite CKE’s expansion, Carl remained millions of dollars in debt. He’d secured new loans to pay off the old ones. During the worst of his
financial troubles, advisers pleaded with him to declare bankruptcy. Carl refused; he’d borrowed more than $8 million from family members
and friends, and he would not walk away from his obligations. Every weekday he was attending Mass at six o’clock in the morning and
getting to the office by seven. “My goal in the next two years,” he said, “is to pay off all my debts.”
I looked out the window and asked how he felt driving through Anaheim today, with its fast food restaurants, subdivisions, and strip malls.
“Well, to be frank about it,” he said, “I couldn’t be happier.” Thinking that he’d misunderstood the question, I rephrased it, asking if he ever
missed the old Anaheim, the ranches and citrus groves.
“No,” he answered. “I believe in Progress.”
Carl grew up on a farm without running water or electricity. He’d escaped a hard rural life. The view outside his office window wa...
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- Spring '08