The Great Financial Meltdown reviews, advocates and critiques the systemic, conjunctural and policy-based explanations for the 2008 crisis. The book expertly examines these explanations to assess their analytical and empirical validity. Comprehensive yet accessible chapters, written by a collection of prominent authors, cover a wide range of political economy approaches to the crisis, from Marxian through to Post Keynesian and other heterodox schools.
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NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2018 BY THE FINANCIAL TIMES A groundbreaking take on how complexity causes failure in all kinds of modern systems--from social media to air travel--this practical and entertaining book reveals how we can prevent meltdowns in business and life "Endlessly fascinating, brimming with insight, and more fun than a book about failure has any right to be, Meltdown will transform how you think about the systems that govern our lives. This is a wonderful book."--Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit and Smarter Faster Better A crash on the Washington, D.C. metro system. An accidental overdose in a state-of-the-art hospital. An overcooked holiday meal. At first glance, these disasters seem to have little in common. But surprising new research shows that all these events--and the myriad failures that dominate headlines every day--share similar causes. By understanding what lies behind these failures, we can design better systems, make our teams more productive, and transform how we make decisions at work and at home. Weaving together cutting-edge social science with riveting stories that take us from the frontlines of the Volkswagen scandal to backstage at the Oscars, and from deep beneath the Gulf of Mexico to the top of Mount Everest, Chris Clearfield and András Tilcsik explain how the increasing complexity of our systems creates conditions ripe for failure and why our brains and teams can't keep up. They highlight the paradox of progress: Though modern systems have given us new capabilities, they've become vulnerable to surprising meltdowns--and even to corruption and misconduct. But Meltdown isn't just about failure; it's about solutions--whether you're managing a team or the chaos of your family's morning routine. It reveals why ugly designs make us safer, how a five-minute exercise can prevent billion-dollar catastrophes, why teams with fewer experts are better at managing risk, and why diversity is one of our best safeguards against failure. The result is an eye-opening, empowering, and entirely original book--one that will change the way you see our complex world and your own place in it.
Companies crash, millions will lose their jobs. House prices will go into freefall - Will history repeat itself? Can you cope? Do you know what to do? This book shows you how to survive the "Financial Meltdown"
Tibetans have experienced waves of genocide since the 1950s. Now they are facing ecocide. The Himalayan snowcaps are in meltdown mode, due to climate change—accelerated by a rain of black soot from massive burning of coal and other fuels in both China and India. The mighty rivers of Tibet are being dammed by Chinese engineering consortiums to feed the mainland's thirst for power, and the land is being relentlessly mined in search of minerals to feed China's industrial complex. On the drawing board are plans for a massive engineering project to divert water from Eastern Tibet to water-starved Northern China. Ruthless Chinese repression leaves Tibetans powerless to stop the reckless destruction of their sacred land, but they are not the only victims of this campaign: the nations downstream from Tibet rely heavily on rivers sourced in Tibet for water supply, and for rich silt used in agriculture. This destruction of the region's environment has been happening with little scrutiny until now. In Meltdown in Tibet, Michael Buckley turns the spotlight on the darkest side of China's emergence as a global super power.
In November 2005, Sunni insurgents attacked a U.S. Marine squad en route to Haditha with an improvised explosive device (IED). One Marine died and two others were wounded. Within minutes, squad members killed 24 Iraqi civilians, including an elderly couple, four women and six children. It was the worst incident of its kind in the Iraq War. Thirteen months later, four officers and four enlisted men were accused of crimes ranging from dereliction of duty to murder. The legal proceedings dragged on for five years, longer than any in U.S. military history. The only conviction was that of an NCO who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor. Unlike other legal actions conducted during the 60-year history of the present military justice system, these proceedings were held mostly in secret. This book investigates the tactics adopted by Marine Corps commanders and the ineptness of the proceedings, which raise serious questions about the need for reform of the Code of Military Justice.
When George W. Bush took office in 2001, North Korea's nuclear program was frozen and Kim Jong Il had signaled he was ready to negotiate. Today, North Korea possesses as many as ten nuclear warheads, and possibly the means to provide nuclear material to rogue states or terrorist groups. How did this happen? Drawing on more than two hundred interviews with key players in Washington, Seoul, Tokyo, and Beijing, including Colin Powell, John Bolton, and ex–Korean president Kim Dae-jung, as well as insights gained during fourteen trips to Pyongyang, Mike Chinoy takes readers behind the scenes of secret diplomatic meetings, disputed intelligence reports, and Washington turf battles as well as inside the mysterious world of North Korea. Meltdown provides a wealth of new material about a previously opaque series of events that eventually led the Bush administration to abandon confrontation and pursue negotiations, and explains how the diplomatic process collapsed and produced the crisis the Obama administration confronts today.
For amiable City trader Jimmy Corby money was the new Rock n' Roll. His whole life was a party, adrenalin charged and cocaine fuelled. If he hadn't met Monica he would probably have ended up either dead or in rehab. But Jimmy was as lucky in love as he was at betting on dodgy derivatives, so instead of burning out, his star just burned brighter than ever. Rich, pampered and successful, Jimmy, Monica and their friends lived the dream, bringing up their children with an army of domestic helps. But then it all came crashing down. And when the global financial crisis hit, Jimmy discovers that anyone can handle success. It's how you handle failure that really matters.
This book describes the irrational life of Soviet producers, the monstrous deprivation of Soviet consumers, and the ideological origins of the Soviet economy that have resulted in a system unable to bear the weight of being a superpower. The authors spell out the challenges that Gorbachev and his successors face. The penultimate chapter deals with the privatization of the Soviet economy. In the last chapter they document the failure of Western experts and pundits to create a true picture of the Soviet system.
Jayd Jackson hopes her magical Mama has a spell to chase all her cares away. . . Jayd needs time to recoup from her dramatic school year, but time is the one thing she doesn't have. She's said yes to becoming a debutante, and now she has to deal with her girl Mickey's jealousy--on top of babysitting, hair braiding, cheer camp, and a summer writing class. With the stress of Jayd's hectic schedule, strange visions, and insomnia, luckily Mama returns from her vacation in time to help Jayd and her crew avert real drama. Mama's convinced something sinister is at play, and they both need a plan to get Jayd her swagger back before it's too late. . .
America's Defense Meltdown: Pentagon Reform for President Obama and the New Congress describes how America's armed forces are manned and equipped to fight, at best, enemies that do not now—and may never again—exist and to combat real enemies ineffectively at high human and material cost. Given that many regard America's military as "the best in the world," how can this be? In answer to this question, 13 "non-partisan Pentagon insiders, retired military officers, and defense specialists" lay out an array of hard-hitting and well-documented charges against our current defense establishment. They demonstrate that the hugely expensive and excessively complex weapons embraced by the Pentagon and Congress as vital for our national defense are barely adequate for engaging in outmoded 20th century forms of warfare. They are woefully inadequate for fighting a 21st century "fourth generation" war, as we've learned so painfully in Iraq and Afghanistan. At least as disturbing is the condition of the US defense budget. Over time, policy makers of all political stripes have created budgets that have made our forces smaller, less well equipped, and less ready to fight—all at dramatically increasing cost. Fortunately, the book's authors offer "real-world" solutions to all the problems they identify. At the same time, however, they remain pessimistic about the prospects for real change—arguing that in a system that measures merit by the amount of money spent, the reform proposals elaborated in this book are likely to meet intense resistance. As Winslow Wheeler remarks, "The changes require a president with an iron will who will require real, not cosmetic, reforms of a system determined to and skilled at countering them. It will also require a president who will stick with the process for years, continuously making decisions that will ultimately reverse the present disastrous course U.S. national security is now on. "