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The Fifth Risk

https://www.amazon.com/Fifth-Risk-Michael-Lewis-ebook/dp/B07...
New York Times BestsellerWhat are the consequences if the people given control over our government have no idea how it works?"The election happened," remembers Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, then deputy secretary of the Department of Energy. "And then there was radio silence." Across all departments, similar stories were playing out: Trump appointees were few and far between; those that did show up were shockingly uninformed about the functions of their new workplace. Some even threw away the briefing books that had been prepared for them.Michael Lewis’s brilliant narrative takes us into the engine rooms of a government under attack by its own leaders. In Agriculture the funding of vital programs like food stamps and school lunches is being slashed. The Commerce Department may not have enough staff to conduct the 2020 Census properly. Over at Energy, where international nuclear risk is managed, it’s not clear there will be enough inspectors to track and locate black market uranium before terrorists do.Willful ignorance plays a role in these looming disasters. If your ambition is to maximize short-term gains without regard to the long-term cost, you are better off not knowing those costs. If you want to preserve your personal immunity to the hard problems, it’s better never to really understand those problems. There is upside to ignorance, and downside to knowledge. Knowledge makes life messier. It makes it a bit more difficult for a person who wishes to shrink the world to a worldview.If there are dangerous fools in this book, there are also heroes, unsung, of course. They are the linchpins of the system—those public servants whose knowledge, dedication, and proactivity keep the machinery running. Michael Lewis finds them, and he asks them what keeps them up at night.
Published by: W. W. Norton & Company | Publication date: 10/02/2018
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 221 pages

Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother's Will to Survive

https://www.amazon.com/Maid-Hard-Work-Mothers-Survive-ebook/...
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLEREvicted meets Nickel and Dimed in Stephanie Land's memoir about working as a maid, a beautiful and gritty exploration of poverty in America. Includes a foreword by Barbara Ehrenreich. At 28, Stephanie Land's plans of breaking free from the roots of her hometown in the Pacific Northwest to chase her dreams of attending a university and becoming a writer, were cut short when a summer fling turned into an unexpected pregnancy. She turned to housekeeping to make ends meet, and with a tenacious grip on her dream to provide her daughter the very best life possible, Stephanie worked days and took classes online to earn a college degree, and began to write relentlessly. She wrote the true stories that weren't being told: the stories of overworked and underpaid Americans. Of living on food stamps and WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) coupons to eat. Of the government programs that provided her housing, but that doubled as halfway houses. The aloof government employees who called her lucky for receiving assistance while she didn't feel lucky at all. She wrote to remember the fight, to eventually cut through the deep-rooted stigmas of the working poor. Maid explores the underbelly of upper-middle class America and the reality of what it's like to be in service to them. "I'd become a nameless ghost," Stephanie writes about her relationship with her clients, many of whom do not know her from any other cleaner, but who she learns plenty about. As she begins to discover more about her clients' lives-their sadness and love, too-she begins to find hope in her own path. Her compassionate, unflinching writing as a journalist gives voice to the "servant" worker, and those pursuing the American Dream from below the poverty line. Maid is Stephanie's story, but it's not her alone. It is an inspiring testament to the strength, determination, and ultimate triumph of the human spirit.
Published by: Hachette Books | Publication date: 01/22/2019
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 289 pages

AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order

https://www.amazon.com/AI-Superpowers-China-Silicon-Valley-e...
THE NEW YORK TIMES, USA TODAY, AND WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLERDr. Kai-Fu Lee—one of the world’s most respected experts on AI and China—reveals that China has suddenly caught up to the US at an astonishingly rapid and unexpected pace.   In AI Superpowers, Kai-fu Lee argues powerfully that because of these unprecedented developments in AI, dramatic changes will be happening much sooner than many of us expected. Indeed, as the US-Sino AI competition begins to heat up, Lee urges the US and China to both accept and to embrace the great responsibilities that come with significant technological power. Most experts already say that AI will have a devastating impact on blue-collar jobs. But Lee predicts that Chinese and American AI will have a strong impact on white-collar jobs as well. Is universal basic income the solution? In Lee’s opinion, probably not.  But he provides  a clear description of which jobs will be affected and how soon, which jobs can be enhanced with AI, and most importantly, how we can provide solutions to some of the most profound changes in human history that are coming soon.
Author: Kai-Fu Lee
Published by: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | Publication date: 09/25/2018
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 275 pages

Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World

https://www.amazon.com/Winners-Take-All-Charade-Changing-ebo...
The New York Times bestselling, groundbreaking investigation of how the global elite's efforts to "change the world" preserve the status quo and obscure their role in causing the problems they later seek to solve. An essential read for understanding some of the egregious abuses of power that dominate today’s news.Former New York Times columnist Anand Giridharadas takes us into the inner sanctums of a new gilded age, where the rich and powerful fight for equality and justice any way they can--except ways that threaten the social order and their position atop it. We see how they rebrand themselves as saviors of the poor; how they lavishly reward "thought leaders" who redefine "change" in winner-friendly ways; and how they constantly seek to do more good, but never less harm. We hear the limousine confessions of a celebrated foundation boss; witness an American president hem and haw about his plutocratic benefactors; and attend a cruise-ship conference where entrepreneurs celebrate their own self-interested magnanimity. Giridharadas asks hard questions: Why, for example, should our gravest problems be solved by the unelected upper crust instead of the public institutions it erodes by lobbying and dodging taxes? He also points toward an answer: Rather than rely on scraps from the winners, we must take on the grueling democratic work of building more robust, egalitarian institutions and truly changing the world. A call to action for elites and everyday citizens alike.
Published by: Knopf | Publication date: 08/28/2018
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 276 pages

Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World

https://www.amazon.com/Utopia-Realists-Build-Ideal-World-ebo...
Universal basic income. A 15-hour workweek. Open borders. Does it sound too good to be true? One of Europe's leading young thinkers shows how we can build an ideal world today."A more politically radical Malcolm Gladwell." --New York TimesAfter working all day at jobs we often dislike, we buy things we don't need. Rutger Bregman, a Dutch historian, reminds us it needn't be this way-and in some places it isn't.Rutger Bregman's TED Talk about universal basic income seemed impossibly radical when he delivered it in 2014. A quarter of a million views later, the subject of that video is being seriously considered by leading economists and government leaders the world over. It's just one of the many utopian ideas that Bregman proves is possible today.Utopia for Realists is one of those rare books that takes you by surprise and challenges what you think can happen. From a Canadian city that once completely eradicated poverty, to Richard Nixon's near implementation of a basic income for millions of Americans, Bregman takes us on a journey through history, and beyond the traditional left-right divides, as he champions ideas whose time have come. Every progressive milestone of civilization-from the end of slavery to the beginning of democracy-was once considered a utopian fantasy. Bregman's book, both challenging and bracing, demonstrates that new utopian ideas, like the elimination of poverty and the creation of the fifteen-hour workweek, can become a reality in our lifetime. Being unrealistic and unreasonable can in fact make the impossible inevitable, and it is the only way to build the ideal world.
Published by: Little, Brown and Company | Publication date: 03/14/2017
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 262 pages

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women

https://www.amazon.com/Radium-Girls-Story-Americas-Shining-e...
A New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller!Emma Watson's Our Shared Shelf Bookclub Selection - May/June 2018 "the glowing ghosts of the radium girls haunt us still."—NPR Books The incredible true story of the women who fought America's Undark dangerThe Curies' newly discovered element of radium makes gleaming headlines across the nation as the fresh face of beauty, and wonder drug of the medical community. From body lotion to tonic water, the popular new element shines bright in the otherwise dark years of the First World War.Meanwhile, hundreds of girls toil amidst the glowing dust of the radium-dial factories. The glittering chemical covers their bodies from head to toe; they light up the night like industrious fireflies. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" are the luckiest alive — until they begin to fall mysteriously ill.But the factories that once offered golden opportunities are now ignoring all claims of the gruesome side effects, and the women's cries of corruption. And as the fatal poison of the radium takes hold, the brave shining girls find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest scandals of America's early 20th century, and in a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights that will echo for centuries to come. Written with a sparkling voice and breakneck pace, The Radium Girls fully illuminates the inspiring young women exposed to the "wonder" substance of radium, and their awe-inspiring strength in the face of almost impossible circumstances. Their courage and tenacity led to life-changing regulations, research into nuclear bombing, and ultimately saved hundreds of thousands of lives...
Author: Kate Moore
Published by: Sourcebooks | Publication date: 04/18/2017
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 496 pages

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power

https://www.amazon.com/Age-Surveillance-Capitalism-Future-Fr...
The challenges to humanity posed by the digital future, the first detailed examination of the unprecedented form of power called "surveillance capitalism," and the quest by powerful corporations to predict and control our behavior.In this masterwork of original thinking and research, Shoshana Zuboff provides startling insights into the phenomenon that she has named surveillance capitalism. The stakes could not be higher: a global architecture of behavior modification threatens human nature in the twenty-first century just as industrial capitalism disfigured the natural world in the twentieth.Zuboff vividly brings to life the consequences as surveillance capitalism advances from Silicon Valley into every economic sector. Vast wealth and power are accumulated in ominous new "behavioral futures markets," where predictions about our behavior are bought and sold, and the production of goods and services is subordinated to a new "means of behavioral modification."The threat has shifted from a totalitarian Big Brother state to a ubiquitous digital architecture: a "Big Other" operating in the interests of surveillance capital. Here is the crucible of an unprecedented form of power marked by extreme concentrations of knowledge and free from democratic oversight. Zuboff's comprehensive and moving analysis lays bare the threats to twenty-first century society: a controlled "hive" of total connection that seduces with promises of total certainty for maximum profit--at the expense of democracy, freedom, and our human future.With little resistance from law or society, surveillance capitalism is on the verge of dominating the social order and shaping the digital future--if we let it.
Published by: PublicAffairs | Publication date: 01/15/2019
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 705 pages

Big Debt Crises

https://www.amazon.com/Big-Debt-Crises-Ray-Dalio-ebook/dp/B0...
“Ray Dalio’s excellent study provides an innovative way of thinking about debt crises and the policy response.” - Ben Bernanke“Ray Dalio’s book is must reading for anyone who aspires to prevent or manage through the next financial crisis.” - Larry Summers“A terrific piece of work from one of the world’s top investors who has devoted his life to understanding markets and demonstrated that understanding by navigating the 2008 financial crisis well.” - Hank Paulson“An outstanding history of financial crises, including the devastating crisis of 2008, with a very valuable framework for understanding why the engine of the financial system occasionally breaks down, and what types of policy actions by central banks and governments are necessary to resolve systemic financial crises. This should serve as a play book for future policy makers, with practical guidance about what to do and what not to do.” - Tim Geithner“Dalio’s approach, as in his investment management, is to synthesize information, and to convert a sprawling and multi-faceted issue into a clear-cut process of cause and effect. Critically, he simplifies without over-simplifying.” - Financial Times For the 10th anniversary of the 2008 financial crisis, one of the world’s most successful investors, Ray Dalio, shares his unique template for how debt crises work and principles for dealing with them well. This template allowed his firm, Bridgewater Associates, to anticipate events and navigate them well while others struggled badly.As he explained in his #1 New York Times Bestseller, Principles: Life & Work, Dalio believes that most everything happens over and over again through time so that by studying their patterns one can understand the cause-effect relationships behind them and develop principles for dealing with them well. In this 3-part research series, he does that for big debt crises and shares his template in the hopes reducing the chances of big debt crises happening and helping them be better managed in the future.The template comes in three parts provided in three books: 1) The Archetypal Big Debt Cycle (which explains the template), 2) 3 Detailed Cases (which examines in depth the 2008 financial crisis, the 1930’s Great Depression, and the 1920’s inflationary depression of Germany’s Weimar Republic), and 3) Compendium of 48 Cases (which is a compendium of charts and brief descriptions of the worst debt crises of the last 100 years). Whether you’re an investor, a policy maker, or are simply interested, the unconventional perspective of one of the few people who navigated the crises successfully, Principles for Navigating Big Debt Crises will help you understand the economy and markets in revealing new ways.
Author: Ray Dalio
Published by: Bridgewater | Publication date: 09/10/2018
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 705 pages

The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes: The Ancient World Economy & the Empires of Parthia, Central Asia & Han China

https://www.amazon.com/Roman-Empire-Silk-Routes-Ancient-eboo...
A fascinating history of the intricate web of trade routes connecting ancient Rome to Eastern civilizations, including its powerful rival, the Han Empire.  The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes investigates the trade routes between Rome and the powerful empires of inner Asia, including the Parthian Empire of ancient Persia, and the Kushan Empire which seized power in Bactria (Afghanistan), laying claim to the Indus Kingdoms. Further chapters examine the development of Palmyra as a leading caravan city on the edge of Roman Syria. Raoul McLaughlin also delves deeply into Rome’s trade ventures through the Tarim territories, which led its merchants to the Han Empire of ancient China.   Having established a system of Central Asian trade routes known as the Silk Road, the Han carried eastern products as far as Persia and the frontiers of the Roman Empire. Though they were matched in scale, the Han surpassed its European rival in military technology.   The first book to address these subjects in a single comprehensive study, The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes explores Rome’s impact on the ancient world economy and reveals what the Chinese and Romans knew about their rival Empires.
Published by: Pen & Sword History | Publication date: 11/11/2016
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 282 pages

American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment

https://www.amazon.com/American-Prison-Reporters-Undercover-...
New York Times Book Review 10 Best Books of 2018One of President Barack Obama’s favorite books of 2018A New York Times Notable Book A ground-breaking and brave inside reckoning with the nexus of prison and profit in America: in one Louisiana prison and over the course of our country's history.In 2014, Shane Bauer was hired for $9 an hour to work as an entry-level prison guard at a private prison in Winnfield, Louisiana. An award-winning investigative journalist, he used his real name; there was no meaningful background check. Four months later, his employment came to an abrupt end. But he had seen enough, and in short order he wrote an exposé about his experiences that won a National Magazine Award and became the most-read feature in the history of the magazine Mother Jones. Still, there was much more that he needed to say. In American Prison, Bauer weaves a much deeper reckoning with his experiences together with a thoroughly researched history of for-profit prisons in America from their origins in the decades before the Civil War. For, as he soon realized, we can't understand the cruelty of our current system and its place in the larger story of mass incarceration without understanding where it came from. Private prisons became entrenched in the South as part of a systemic effort to keep the African-American labor force in place in the aftermath of slavery, and the echoes of these shameful origins are with us still.The private prison system is deliberately unaccountable to public scrutiny. Private prisons are not incentivized to tend to the health of their inmates, or to feed them well, or to attract and retain a highly-trained prison staff. Though Bauer befriends some of his colleagues and sympathizes with their plight, the chronic dysfunction of their lives only adds to the prison's sense of chaos. To his horror, Bauer finds himself becoming crueler and more aggressive the longer he works in the prison, and he is far from alone. A blistering indictment of the private prison system, and the powerful forces that drive it, American Prison is a necessary human document about the true face of justice in America.
Author: Shane Bauer
Published by: Penguin Press | Publication date: 09/18/2018
Kindle book details: Kindle Edition, 366 pages
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