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Download Power, Inc.: The Epic Rivalry between Big Business and Government—and the Reckoning That Lies Ahead Audiobook

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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (56 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: David Rothkopf Narrator: William Hughes Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The world’s largest company, Wal-Mart Stores, has revenues higher than the gross domestic product of all but twenty-five of the world’s countries. Its employees outnumber the populations of almost one hundred nations. The world’s largest asset manager, a New York company called BlackRock, controls assets greater than the national reserves of any country on the planet. A private philanthropy, the Gates Foundation, spends as much worldwide on health care as the World Health Organization.

The rise of private power may be the most important and least understood trend of our time. Power, Inc. provides a fresh, timely look at how we have reached a point where thousands of companies have greater power than all but a handful of states. Beginning with the story of an inquisitive Swedish goat wandering off from his master and inadvertently triggering the birth of the oldest company still in existence, Power, Inc. follows the rise and fall of kings and empires, the making of great fortunes, and the chaos of bloody revolutions. A fast-paced tale in which champions of liberty are revealed to be paid pamphleteers of moneyed interests and greedy scoundrels trigger changes that have lifted billions from deprivation, Power, Inc. traces the bruising jockeying for influence right up to today’s financial crises, growing inequality, broken international system, and battles over the proper role of government and markets.

Rothkopf argues that these recent developments, coupled with the rise of powers like China and India, may not lead to the triumph of American capitalism that was celebrated just a few years ago. Instead, he considers an unexpected scenario, a contest among competing capitalisms offering different visions for how the world should work, a global ideological struggle in which European and Asian models may have important advantages. An important look at the power struggle that is defining our times, Power, Inc. also offers critical insights into how to succeed in the years ahead.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “As David Rothkopf points out in his incisive and timely new book, Power, Inc., the pendulum has swung sharply from public to corporate in the last generation. That has changed the character of the US economy.”

    Financial Times

  • “Author and consultant Rothkopf, after a historical perspective, examines today’s challenges in balancing public and private power…Rothkopf concludes that in the future, states will play a crucial role as institutional power centers that serve the public interest…An enlightening account.” 

    Booklist

  • “At a time when our political debate lacks clarity and our economic model is floundering, David Rothkopf brings a compelling vision to the table, both about the challenges that we face and about what the future might look like. It is based on his own experience in business and in government and on a remarkably detailed sense of history. He describes how the complex relationship between private and public interest has evolved since the time of the Sweden’s first king, and how that relationship at least in part explains our current malaise. Rothkopf employs a brilliant use of history to identify the channels that could, in the end, lead to a better way forward.”

    Carol Graham, senior fellow and Charles Robinson Chair, The Brookings Institution, and author of The Pursuit of Happiness: An Economy of Well-Being

  • “David Rothkopf is a deep thinker and a fine writer. We now know he is also an astute and creative historian. Power, Inc. tells an important story: how once-weak corporations evolved into the muscular institutions that are now stronger than many countries—and have been grotesquely enabled in the US by Citizens United. It’s also chock full of fascinating historical tidbits. Who knew that the copper industry may have begun with a goat? Read it to be informed and delighted.”

    Alan S. Blinder, former vice chairman of the US Federal Reserve, Gordon S. Rentschler Memorial Professor of Economics and Public Affairs, Princeton University

  • “It would be hard to find a timelier book than Power, Inc. Where we draw the line between public and private power will shape the twenty-first century as the divide between communism and capitalism shaped the twentieth. The full dimensions of that struggle are just beginning to emerge, but David Rothkopf, as usual, is ahead of the curve with a provocative, insightful book that is easy to read and hard to put down.”

    Anne-Marie Slaughter, Bert G. Kerstetter University professor of politics and international affairs, Princeton University

  • “The frontier between governments and markets is constantly shifting. Focusing on this contested border, David Rothkopf vividly describes the parallel rise of the modern nation-state and the modern corporation. In an age of globalization, Rothkopf argues that this frontier urgently needs to be redrawn. Readers, whatever their views on this important debate, will be compelled to rethink today’s economic travails and reassess expectations for tomorrow.” 

    Daniel Yergin, author of The Quest: Energy, Security, and the Remaking of the Modern World

  • “Rothkopf delivers a lively, accessible treatment of a multifaceted, complex subject.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • One of the 2012 Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books: History
  • A Library Journal Best Book of 2012: Business
  • A Kirkus Reviews “New and Notable Title” for Nonfiction, March 2012

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Luke Lanciano | 10/2/2013

    " Excellent historical overview of the rise of private power, and the coming challenges of integrating this new loci of power into a rules-based, legitimate global social framework. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Carrie | 9/9/2013

    " Some interesting perspectives but often dry and hard to follow. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Brian Katz | 8/10/2013

    " Very interesting read about Power, the church, the state and private enterprise and how all of these groups have fought for Power over the centuries. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Jeremy Poh | 7/4/2013

    " Deep book suitable for political science students. "

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