Book Bits: 24 October 2020

The Prepared Investor: How to Prevent the Next Crisis from Affecting Your Financial Independence
Christopher Manske
Press release for book’s publication
“Why do some crises affect the stock market more than others? Wall Street typically suggests that, when crisis hits, investors bide their time because someday, perhaps years later, the markets will come back. This standard approach means waiting through chaos, confusion, and even long-term loss,” said Chris Manske author of The Prepared Investor. “I was compelled to write this book to tell the true story of crisis investing which is generally more proactive – and a lot more optimistic – than it seems on the surface.”

Inside Jobs: Why Insider Risk Is the Biggest Cyber Threat You Can’t Ignore
Joe Payne, et al.
Summary via publisher (Skyhorse)
Modern day data security can no longer be accomplished by “Big Brother” forms of monitoring or traditional prevention solutions that rely solely on classification and blocking systems. These technologies frustrate employees, impede collaboration, and force productivity work-arounds that risk the very data you need to secure. They provide the illusion that your trade secrets, customer lists, patents, and other intellectual property are protected. That couldn’t be farther from the truth, as insider threats continue to grow.

Rotten: Why Corporate Misconduct Continues and What to Do about It
Marc J. Epstein and Kirk O. Hanson
Press release for book’s publication
“We felt obligated to share our conclusion –after decades trying to promote ethics in business –that our own efforts, and those of so many well-intentioned executives in business, have failed to stop unethical conduct. Most companies think they have done a good job managing ethics. They haven’t,” says co-author Hanson. “Repeated misconduct, damaging customers, employees, business partners, communities and the environment, has continued. Companies have failed to control bad apples (unethical individuals), bad barrels (toxic corporate cultures), and bad orchards (corrupt environments).”

Clash of Powers: US-China Rivalry in Global Trade Governance
Kristen Hopewell
Summary via publisher (Cambridge U. Press)
The US-China trade war instigated by President Trump has thrown the multilateral trading system into a crisis. Drawing on vast interview and documentary materials, Hopewell shows how US-China conflict had already paralyzed the system of international rules and institutions governing trade. The China Paradox – the fact that China is both a developing country and an economic powerhouse – creates significant challenges for global trade governance and rule-making. While China demands exemptions from global trade disciplines as a developing country, the US refuses to extend special treatment to its rival. The implications of this conflict extend far beyond trade, impeding pro-development and pro-environment reforms of the global trading system. As one of the first analyses of the implications of US-China rivalry for the governance of global trade, this book is crucial to our understanding of China’s impact on the global trading system and on the liberal international economic order.

Billion Dollar Loser: The Epic Rise and Spectacular Fall of Adam Neumann and WeWork
Reeves Wiedeman
Review via The Atlantic
HBO’s Silicon Valley aired its final episode last year, the tech world’s realities having gotten too dystopian to be fictionalized, in good conscience, for laughs. When a reporter asked what material the show had left on the table, the showrunners, Mike Judge and Alec Berg, admitted, “We missed the WeWork guy.” That guy—WeWork’s telegenic co-founder and former CEO, Adam Neumann—had once been known for turning an upscale co-working business into America’s most valuable private start-up, peddling vague kumbayas like This decade is the decade of “We.” But then WeWork filed paperwork to go public, revealing that the company had lost billions of dollars while enriching Neumann.

The Anti-Capitalist Chronicles
David Harvey
Summary via publisher (Pluto Press)
Amidst waves of economic crises, class struggle and neo-fascist reaction, few possess the clarity and foresight of world-renowned theorist, David Harvey. Since the publication of his bestselling A Brief History of Neoliberalism, Harvey has been tracking the evolution of the capitalist system as well as tides of radical opposition rising against it. In The Anti-Capitalist Chronicles, Harvey introduces new ways of understanding the crisis of global capitalism and the struggles for a better world.

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