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Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788

Posted by admin | Posted in History-Books | Posted on 28-11-2010-05-2008

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0684868547 : Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788
ISBN: 0684868547

 
Author: Pauline Maier

When the delegates left the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in September 1787, the new Constitution they had written was no more than a proposal. Elected conventions in at least nine of the thirteen states would have to ratify it before it could take effect. There was reason to doubt whether that would happen. The document we revere today as the foundation of our country?s laws, the cornerstone of our legal system, was hotly disputed at the time. Some Americans denounced the Constitution for threatening the liberty that Americans had won at great cost in the Revolutionary War. One group of fiercely patriotic opponents even burned the document in a raucous public demonstration on the Fourth of July.

In this splendid new history, Pauline Maier tells the dramatic story of the yearlong battle over ratification that brought such famous founders as Washington, Hamilton, Madison, Jay, and Henry together with less well-known Americans who sometimes eloquently and always passionately expressed their hopes and fears for their new country. Men argued in taverns and coffeehouses; women joined the debate in their parlors; broadsides and newspaper stories advocated various points of view and excoriated others. In small towns and counties across the country people read the document carefully and knew it well. Americans seized the opportunity to play a role in shaping the new nation. Then the ratifying conventions chosen by “We the People” scrutinized and debated the Constitution clause by clause.

Although many books have been written about the Constitutional Convention, this is the first major history of ratification. It draws on a vast new collection of documents and tells the story with masterful attention to detail in a dynamic narrative. Each state?s experience was different, and Maier gives each its due even as she focuses on the four critical states of Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Virginia, and New York, whose approval of the Constitution was crucial to its success.

The New Yorker Gilbert Livingston called his participation in the ratification convention the greatest transaction of his life. The hundreds of delegates to the ratifying conventions took their responsibility seriously, and their careful inspection of the Constitution can tell us much today about a document whose meaning continues to be subject to interpretation. Ratification is the story of the founding drama of our nation, superbly told in a history that transports readers back more than two centuries to reveal the convictions and aspirations on which our country was built.

Pages: 608
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Year: 2010

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30 Days to a Well-Mannered Dog: The Loved Dog Method

Posted by admin | Posted in Home-Garden-Books, Literature & Fiction | Posted on 28-11-2010-05-2008

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1439176701 : 30 Days to a Well-Mannered Dog: The Loved Dog Method
ISBN: 1439176701

 
Author: Tamar Geller

Long known as a dog coach to the stars?her clients include Oprah Winfrey, Ben Affleck, Courteney Cox-Arquette, Owen Wilson, Natalie Portman, and Larry King?Tamar Geller changed the way Americans relate to their dogs with her bestselling book The Loved Dog. Her approach is simple and down-to-earth. Instead of utilizing the negative and often painful feedback of physical dominance, choke chains, and prong collars, Tamar recommends love, play, and mutual respect as the keys to a happy home for dog and human alike.

Now, Tamar makes her Loved Dog? Method accessible for everyone with this day-by-day guide that will lead you through the first thirty days with your new dog?or help you make a fresh start with your current dog. Drawing on her studies of wolves in the wild and basing her method on the principles of child development, Tamar uses an “instincts versus choice” approach that satisfies a dog?s Seven Basic Needs and will result in a pet with good manners.

30 Days to a Well-Mannered Dog covers every question commonly asked by people embarking on the momentous journey of dog ownership: why it?s important to choose the appropriate dog for you and your lifestyle, what you can expect from a puppy versus an adult dog, how to introduce your new dog to your home, and how to respond when things don?t go according to plan. Tamar guides you every step of the way, from addressing undesired behaviors in your dog to crate and paper training him to introducing him to other dogs and helping him become relaxed with strangers. Included are important but often overlooked tips about the use of words and body language to communicate, the power of play, and the amazing value of teaching your dog some lighthearted pet tricks.

Along the way, Tamar debunks myths in need of debunking: that dogs are frequently “alpha” by nature and need to be dominated; that discipline is the key to dog training, and that “success” only means getting your dog to do what you want. Instead, she shows how to align your dog’s wishes with your own to create a rich and enduring relationship that works wonderfully for you both.

Gentle, firm, and effective, 30 Days to a Well-Mannered Dog will build your relationship with your dog to make every new day together a day of love, joy, and discovery.?

Pages: 416
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Gallery Year: 2010

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Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America

Posted by admin | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 28-11-2010-05-2008

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0385529953 : Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America
ISBN: 0385529953

 
Author: Matt Taibbi

The dramatic story behind the most audacious power grab in American history
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The financial crisis that exploded in 2008 isn?t past but prologue. The stunning rise, fall, and rescue of Wall Street in the bubble-and-bailout era was the coming-out party for the network of looters who sit at the nexus of American political and economic power. The grifter class?made up of the largest players in the financial industry and the politicians who do their bidding?has been growing in power for a generation, transferring wealth upward through increasingly complex financial mechanisms and political maneuvers. The crisis was only one terrifying manifestation of how they?ve hijacked America?s political and economic life.

Rolling Stone?s Matt Taibbi here unravels the whole fiendish story, digging beyond the headlines to get into the deeper roots and wider implications of the rise of the grifters. He traces the movement?s origins to the cult of Ayn Rand and her most influential?and possibly weirdest?acolyte, Alan Greenspan, and offers fresh reporting on the backroom deals that decided the winners and losers in the government bailouts. He uncovers the hidden commodities bubble that transferred billions of dollars to Wall Street while creating food shortages around the world, and he shows how finance dominates politics, from the story of investment bankers auctioning off America?s infrastructure to an inside account of the high-stakes battle for health-care reform?a battle the true reformers lost. Finally, he tells the story of Goldman Sachs, the ?vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity.?

Taibbi has combined deep sources, trailblazing reportage, and provocative analysis to create the most lucid, emotionally galvanizing, and scathingly funny account yet written of the ongoing political and financial crisis in America. This is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the labyrinthine inner workings of politics and finance in this country, and the profound consequences for us all.

Pages: 272
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Spiegel & Grau Year: 2010

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Dethroning the King: The Hostile Takeover of Anheuser-Busch, an American Icon

Posted by admin | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 28-11-2010-05-2008

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0470592702 : Dethroning the King: The Hostile Takeover of Anheuser-Busch, an American Icon
ISBN: 0470592702

 
Author: Julie MacIntosh

The amazing true story behind the siege of America’s favorite beer company

How did InBev, a Belgian company controlled by Brazilians, take over one of America’s most beloved brands after barely a whimper of a fight? Timing, and some unexpected help from powerful members of the Busch dynasty, the very family that had run the company for more than a century.

In Dethroning the King, the award-winning financial journalist who led coverage of the takeover for the Financial Times details how the drama that unfolded at Anheuser-Busch in 2008 went largely unreported as the world tumbled into a global economic crisis second only to the Great Depression. Today, as the dust settles, questions are being asked about how the “King of Beers” was so easily captured by a foreign corporation, and whether the company’s fall mirrors America’s dwindling financial and political dominance.

  • Discusses how the takeover of Anheuser-Busch will be seen as a defining moment in U.S. business history
  • Reveals the critical missteps taken by the Busch family and the Anheuser-Busch board
  • Argues that Anheuser-Busch had a chance to save itself from InBev’s clutches, but strong forces behind the scenes forced it to capitulate

From the very heart of America’s heartland to the European continent to Brazil, Dethroning the King is the ultimate corporate caper and a fascinating case study that’s both wide-reaching and profound.

Amazon.com Exclusive: Q & A with Author Julie MacIntosh

Author Julie MacIntosh

What was the most startling piece of information you came across during your interviews and research for Dethroning the King?
Two things shocked me, actually. I had heard about the rough relationship between August Busch III and his son, August Busch IV, but the rumors hadn?t prepared me for the reality of the situation on the ground in St. Louis. They had a huge blowup over whether to buy a top-of-the-line private jet not long after August IV became CEO, when they should have been figuring out how to save Budweiser. The company?s board of directors got stuck trying to mediate their arguments, and I doubt that had been in their job descriptions. I was also surprised at how close Anheuser-Busch came to merging with Modelo to try to save itself, and at how that all ultimately fell apart. I had covered this deal as a journalist and had known the whole time that the two companies were talking, but I hadn?t known they were just inches from the finish line.

Did you run into any hurdles as you worked to uncover everything that happened behind the scenes?
I wasn?t worried about getting access to key people on Wall Street who were involved in the takeover. I?d known many of them for years. But I was nervous about the reception I?d get from insiders at Anheuser-Busch. I figured the relationship between August III and August IV would be the toughest thing to explore because people had been so closed-mouthed about it in the past, but that was one of the angles my sources were the most eager to talk about. Those two guys are fascinating characters, and I think the people who had witnessed some of their more outrageous moments felt they deserved to be brought to light as part of the story. I got the sense, in general, that this book was a chance for catharsis for some people. The way it all went down is just too fascinating to sweep under the rug with the rest of the mess from the economic crash.

Is this the story of The Busch family dynasty imploding? If so, in what way?
It depends on how you look at it. Adolphus Busch might roll over in his grave if he knew Budweiser was being brewed by Brazilians. But the Busch family hadn?t actually controlled Anheuser-Busch for years ? many people just thought they still did. Some family members made hundreds of millions of dollars on this deal. They?re so rich now that it?s almost incomprehensible. That?s not a bad consolation prize.

Was the takeover inevitable? And what are the implications now that such a beloved American icon is being run by a foreign company?
If Anheuser-Busch hadn?t arrogantly ignored what was going on in the rest of the world, it wouldn?t have been inevitable. But the company focused far too heavily on America, as if this is the only place where people drink beer. Now, thousands of workers have lost their jobs, beer prices are higher, and you have a bunch of Brazilians running around in Missouri. The company has even started charging for Clydesdale appearances. That Bud Light you drank last weekend was brewed by a Brazilian number-cruncher. The big question is whether that actually matters in a globalized world.

Pages: 408
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Wiley Year: 2010

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Crash of the Titans: Greed, Hubris, the Fall of Merrill Lynch, and the Near-Collapse of Bank of America

Posted by admin | Posted in Business-Investing-Books | Posted on 27-11-2010-05-2008

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0307717860 : Crash of the Titans: Greed, Hubris, the Fall of Merrill Lynch, and the Near-Collapse of Bank of America
ISBN: 0307717860

 
Author: Greg Farrell

The intimate, fly-on-the wall tale of the decline and fall of an America icon
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With one notable exception, the firms that make up what we know as Wall Street have always been part of an inbred, insular culture that most people only vaguely understand. The exception was Merrill Lynch, a firm that revolutionized the stock market by bringing Wall Street to Main Street, setting up offices in far-flung cities and towns long ignored by the giants of finance. With its ?thundering herd? of financial advisers, perhaps no other business, whether in financial services or elsewhere, so epitomized the American spirit. Merrill Lynch was not only ?bullish on America,? it was a big reason why so many average Americans were able to grow wealthy by investing in the stock market.?

Merrill Lynch was an icon. Its sudden decline, collapse, and sale to Bank of America was a shock. How did it happen? Why did it happen? And what does this story of greed, hubris, and incompetence tell us about the culture of Wall Street that continues to this day even though it came close to destroying the American economy? A culture in which the CEO of a firm losing $28 billion pushes hard to be paid a $25 million bonus. A culture in which two Merrill Lynch executives are guaranteed bonuses of $30 million and $40 million for four months? work, even while the firm is struggling to reduce its losses by firing thousands of employees.

Based on unparalleled sources at both Merrill Lynch and Bank of America, Greg Farrell?s Crash of the Titans is a Shakespearean saga of three flawed masters of the universe. E. Stanley O?Neal, whose inspiring rise from the segregated South to the corner office of Merrill Lynch?where he engineered a successful turnaround?was undone by his belief that a smooth-talking salesman could handle one of the most difficult jobs on Wall Street. Because he enjoyed O?Neal?s support, this executive was allowed to build up an astonishing $30 billion position in CDOs on the firm?s balance sheet, at a time when all other Wall Street firms were desperately trying to exit the business. After O?Neal comes John Thain, the cerebral, MIT-educated technocrat whose rescue of the New York Stock Exchange earned him the nickname ?Super Thain.? He was hired to save Merrill Lynch in late 2007, but his belief that the markets would rebound led him to underestimate the depth of Merrill?s problems. Finally, we meet Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis, a street fighter raised barely above the poverty line in rural Georgia, whose ?my way or the highway? management style suffers fools more easily than potential rivals, and who made a $50 billion commitment over a September weekend to buy a business he really didn?t understand, thus jeopardizing his own institution.?

The merger itself turns out to be a bizarre combination of cultures that blend like oil and water, where slick Wall Street bankers suddenly find themselves reporting to a cast of characters straight out of the Beverly Hillbillies. BofA?s inbred culture, which perceived New York banks its enemies, was based on loyalty and a good-ol?-boy network in which competence played second fiddle to blind obedience.

Crash of the Titans
is a financial thriller that puts you in the theater as the historic events of the financial crisis unfold and people responsible for billion of dollars of other people?s money gamble recklessly to enhance their power and their paychecks or to save their own skins. Its wealth of never-before-revealed information and focus on two icons of corporate America make it the book that puts together all the pieces of the Wall Street disaster.

Pages: 480
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Crown Business Year: 2010

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Colonel Roosevelt

Posted by admin | Posted in Biographies-Memoirs-Books | Posted on 26-11-2010-05-2008

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0375504877 : Colonel Roosevelt
ISBN: 0375504877

 
Author: Edmund Morris

Of all our great presidents, Theodore Roosevelt is the only one whose greatness increased out of office. When he toured Europe in 1910 as plain ?Colonel Roosevelt,? he was hailed as the most famous man in the world. Crowned heads vied to put him up in their palaces. ?If I see another king,? he joked, ?I think I shall bite him.?

Had TR won his historic ?Bull Moose? campaign in 1912 (when he outpolled the sitting president, William Howard Taft), he might have averted World War I, so great was his international influence. Had he not died in 1919, at the early age of sixty, he would unquestionably have been reelected to a third term in the White House and completed the work he began in 1901 of establishing the United States as a model democracy, militarily strong and socially just.

This biography by Edmund Morris, the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award?winning author of The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt and Theodore Rex, is itself the completion of a trilogy sure to stand as definitive. Packed with more adventure, variety, drama, humor, and tragedy than a big novel, yet documented down to the smallest fact, it recounts the last decade of perhaps the most amazing life in American history. What other president has written forty books, hunted lions, founded a third political party, survived an assassin?s bullet, and explored an unknown river longer than the Rhine?

Colonel Roosevelt begins with a prologue recounting what TR called his ?journey into the Pleistocene??a yearlong safari through East Africa, collecting specimens for the Smithsonian. Some readers will be repulsed by TR?s bloodlust, which this book does not prettify, yet there can be no denying that the Colonel passionately loved and understood every living thing that came his way: The text is rich in quotations from his marvelous nature writing.

Although TR intended to remain out of politics when he returned home in 1910, a fateful decision that spring drew him back into public life. By the end of the summer, in his famous ?New Nationalism? speech, he was the guiding spirit of the Progressive movement, which inspired much of the social agenda of the future New Deal. (TR?s fifth cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt acknowledged that debt, adding that the Colonel ?was the greatest man I ever knew.?)

Then follows a detailed account of TR?s reluctant yet almost successful campaign for the White House in 1912. But unlike other biographers, Edmund Morris does not treat TR mainly as a politician. This volume gives as much consideration to TR?s literary achievements and epic expedition to Brazil in 1913?1914 as to his fatherhood of six astonishingly different children, his spiritual and aesthetic beliefs, and his eager embrace of other cultures?from Arab and Magyar to German and American Indian. It is impossible to read Colonel Roosevelt and not be awed by the man?s universality. The Colonel himself remarked, ?I have enjoyed life as much as any nine men I know.?

Morris does not hesitate, however, to show how pathologically TR turned upon those who inherited the power he craved?the hapless Taft, the adroit Woodrow Wilson. When Wilson declined to bring the United States into World War I in 1915 and 1916, the Colonel blasted him with some of the worst abuse ever uttered by a former chief executive. Yet even Wilson had to admit that behind the Rooseveltian will to rule lay a winning idealism and decency. ?He is just like a big boy?there is a sweetness about him that you can?t resist.? That makes the story of TR?s last year, when the ?boy? in him died, all the sadder in the telling: the conclusion of a life of Aristotelian grandeur.

Pages: 784
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Random House Year: 2010

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