Some such initiatives have as their goal the monetisation and trading of knowledge in the form of intellectual assets. Others seek to create networks for pooling and exchange of knowledge. Together, these initiatives can be referred to as “knowledge networks and markets” (KNMs). This report considers the development of such KNMs and examines the impact of current initiatives and the possible options for governments, working with the private sector, to improve innovation efficiency and effectiveness.
Improving the interoperability of knowledge resources is fundamental to the creation of a necessary shared infrastructure for efficient KNM to emerge, as is related sustainable funding and policy clarity. Governments can play a vital catalytic role in improving the productivity of KNMs through such infrastructure development and encouragement of associated social networking. the report makes suggestions for some priority actions based on existing case studies.
To aid this adaptation key areas of the handbook have been highlighted for “Country Specific Insertions”. While the aim of this handbook is to raise the awareness of tax examiners and tax auditors about the possible implications of transactions or activities related to money laundering and tax crimes, the handbook is not meant to replace domestic policies and procedures.
The DAC Guidelines on Strategies for Sustainable Development aim to provide guidance for development co-operation agencies in their efforts to assist developing countries towards sustainable development. They should also be of value to policy-makers, planners and development practitioners, as well as to academics, students and development analysts in all countries.
Overall, the review shows that the Internet economy has now reached a point where it has become a new source of growth, with the potential to boost the whole economy, to foster innovation, competitiveness and user participation, and to contribute effectively to the prosperity of society as a whole.
Please note that this title is only available on line, in pdf format.
After a brief introduction to the PISA assessment, the book presents three chapters, including PISA questions for the reading, mathematics and science tests, respectively. Each chapter presents an overview of what exactly the questions assess. The second section of each chapter presents questions which were used in the PISA 2000, 2003 and 2006 surveys, that is, the actual PISA tests for which results were published. The third section presents questions used in trying out the assessment. Although these questions were not used in the PISA 2000, 2003 and 2006 surveys, they are nevertheless illustrative of the kind of question PISA uses. The final section shows all the answers, along with brief comments on each question.
It is essential for long-term world prosperity that countries' commitment to trade and investment liberalisation be sustained. To be credible, that commitment must be rooted in and enjoy broad public support and understanding. This makes it all the more important to communicate what trade and investment liberalisation can and cannot do and be held responsible for.
Trade and investment liberalisation is not painless. It should not be viewed as a cure-all nor presented as an end in itself. It is, however, an essential component of any coherent set of policies aimed at helping societies adjust to - and take advantage of - technology-driven transformations whose pace and depth are unprecedented.
The stakes are high. This book examines the various channels through which open markets deliver considerable benefits to societies and their citizens; recalls the real pocket-book costs of protectionism; and addresses the full range of concerns that feature prominently in ongoing discussions over the effects of market liberalisation on employment, income distribution, environmental protection and national sovereignty.
A central message of this book is that liberalisation forms part of the solution to the concerns of citizens, rather than being their root cause. The book's comprehensive treatment of the ins and outs of trade and investment liberalisation should make an important contribution to the public debate. It is essential reading for public officials, business leaders and private citizens who wish to take an active part in it.
While successful contract-farming schemes exist for export crops, they remain rare for food crops. Greater involvement of the private sector in designing and implementing such food-crop commercialisation programmes could develop viable local food industries. Existing international financing facilities such as the Enhanced Private Sector Assistance (EPSA) for Africa should get full use. Whether Africa can unleash the potential of commercial agriculture in the coming decades also depends in no small part on the continuous and effective support of the international development community.
The findings summarised in this volume can serve as building blocks for further international discussions on fostering agro-based private-sector development and lifting smallholders out of poverty.
Why do schools collapse even during moderate earthquakes? Experts agree that many collapse due to avoidable errors in design and construction. Often, the needed technology is not applied and laws and regulations are not sufficiently enforced. Application of existing knowledge can significantly lower the seismic risk of schools and help prevent further injury and death of school occupants during earthquakes. Moreover, this can be accomplished at reasonable cost and within a reasonable period.
Keeping Schools Safe in Earthquakes presents expert knowledge, opinions and experiences, and provides valuable insight into the scope of problems involved in protecting schools and their occupants. Its recommendations are a call to action to all governments in OECD and partner countries to help facilitate their implementation.
The guide has been designed to support all revenue bodies, from those that are in the early stages of developing comprehensive service delivery programs to those with mature programs in place. While it focuses on the revenue body’s role in tax administration it acknowledges that some revenue bodies have a broader set of responsibilities, for example, in the administration of some social policies. This guide has not explored how such roles should integrate at a broader demand management level and revenue bodies will need to assess this issue, if relevant, having regard to their individual circumstances.
Along with the 1993 SNA, Updates and Amendments supports the implementation of international standards of national accounting and provides the methodological basis for improving the international comparability of national accounts data. The publication contains the text of the 1993 SNA that has been updated as a result of the adoption of new international standards for the statistical measurement of financial derivatives. It also includes four functional classifications that were fully elaborated and updated after the 1993 SNA was published. It also provides for the first time a glossary of terms and definitions.
Languages: [Arabic]; [Chinese]; [English]; [Russian]; [Spanish]
The OECD’s 2nd World Forum on Statistics, Knowledge and Policy 'Measuring and Fostering the Progress of Societies' held in Istanbul in June 2007 brought together a diverse group of leaders from more than 130 countries to debate these issues. These proceedings contain 40 papers presented at the Forum.
This full set of guidance on conflict prevention to date from the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) includes the 2001 Supplement and the ground-breaking 1997 Guidelines. This work marks a reaffirmation of the international community’s commitment to work together across government systems to improve their analyses of violent conflicts and establish more coherent policies.
“... We are promoting the consideration of conflict prevention in development assistance strategies with a view to achieving quicker and better co-ordinated assistance strategies – including the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HPIC) initiative – and ensuring a smooth transition from relief to post-conflict development. A significant example of such consideration is the April 2001 OECD/DAC Supplement to the 1997 Guidelines on Conflict, Peace and Development Co-operation.”
– Excerpt from the Conclusions of the G-8 Foreign Ministers’ meeting, July 2001.
Since 1997, the OECD has carried out a series of country reviews based on the Principles, which have documented progress in the reviewed countries. Twenty OECD countries have been reviewed. The reviews have been multidisciplinary, covering the broader economic context, competition policy, market openness, sectoral reforms and not least, the development of regulatory policies, institutions and tools to build up capacities for a high quality rule-making environment supportive of economic growth and specific policy goals. This work has been complemented by the specific research of the OECD secretariat and others on issues such as the link between product market reforms and economic performance. Ample material is now available to take stock of the progress made in OECD countries and to reflect on the continued relevance of the 1997 Principles.
This report integrates more detailed papers prepared for the committees and working parties responsible for regulatory management, competition policy and trade, as well as relevant papers prepared for the Economic Policy Committee.
The Guidelines establish that firms should respect human rights in every country in which they operate. Companies should also respect environmental and labour standards, for example, and have appropriate due diligence processes in place to ensure this happens. These include issues such as paying decent wages, combating bribe solicitation and extortion, and the promotion of sustainable consumption.
The Guidelines are a comprehensive, non-binding code of conduct that OECD member countries and others have agreed to promote among the business sector. A new, tougher process for complaints and mediation has also been put in place.
This report aims to clarify what is now known about human capital and how it can be measured. It responds to a request by governments represented in the OECD Council "to develop an initial set of indicators of human capital investment based on existing data, analyse areas where significant gaps remain in internationally comparable data, identify the cost of development of data collection for new measures and performance indicators, and report to Ministers in 1998".
Featuring more than 140 charts, 230 tables, and 100 000 figures, Education at a Glance provides key information on the ouput of educational institutions; the impact of learning across countries; the financial and human resources invested in education; access, participation and progression in education, and the learning environment and organisation of schools.
In the 2012 edition, new indicators focus on:
• the effect of the global economic crisis on education expenditures;
• the state of early childhood education systems around the world;
• intergenerational mobility in higher education among different socio-economic groups;
• the impact of education on macroeconomic outcomes, such as GDP;
• the specific factors that influence the level of education spending in different countries;
• career expectations among boys and girls at age 15, as compared to higher education graduation rates by field;
• the makeup of the teaching force in different countries and training requirements to enter the teaching profession; and
• the impact of examinations on access to secondary and higher education.
The ExcelTM spreadsheets used to create the tables and charts in Education at a Glance are available via the StatLinks provided throughout. The tables and charts, as well as the complete OECD Online Education Database, are freely available via the OECD Education website at www.oecd.org/edu/eag2012.
Key evaluation principles are set out, including the ‘Six Steps to Heaven’ approach. These principles are illustrated with examples of evaluations of national, regional and local programmes that can be explored further by the reader.
The publication focuses not only on the evaluation of individual policies and programmes, but also on peer review evaluations and assessment of the impact of SMEs and entrepreneurship of mainstream programmes that do not have business development as their principal aim. This book complements other existing guidelines, as it focusses particularly on problem situations and exceptions to the general rules.
This Manual presents the theoretical foundations to productivity measurement, and discusses implementation and measurement issues. The text is accompanied by empirical examples from OECD countries and by numerical examples to enhance its readability. The Manual also offers a brief discussion of the interpretation and use of productivity measures.
With characteristic tenacity, John Stossel outlines and exposes the fallacies and facts of the most pressing issues of today’s social and political climate—and shows how our intuitions about them are, frankly, wrong:
• the unreliable marriage between big business, the media, and unions
• the myth of tax breaks and the ignorance of their advocates
• why “central planners” never create more jobs and how government never really will
• why free trade works—without government Interference
• federal regulations and the trouble they create for consumers
• the harm caused to the disabled by government protection of the disabled
• the problems (social and economic) generated by minimum-wage laws
• the destructive daydreams of “health insurance for everyone”
• bad food vs. good food and the government’s intrusive, unwelcome nanny sensibilities
• the dumbing down of public education and teachers’ unions
• how gun control actually increases crime
. . . and more myth-busting realities of why the American people must wrest our lives back from a government stranglehold.
Stossel also reveals how his unyielding desire to educate the public with the truth caused an irreparable rift with ABC (nobody wanted to hear the point-by- point facts of ObamaCare), and why he left his long-running stint for a new, uncensored forum with Fox. He lays out his ideas for education innovation as well and, finally, makes it perfectly clear why government action is the least effective and desirable fantasy to hang on to. As Stossel says, “It’s not about electing the right people. It’s about narrowing responsibilities.” No, They Can’t is an irrefutable first step toward that goal.
Americans are at the mercy of powerful figures in business and government who are virtually unaccountable. The Obama Administration in particular has broken new ground in its monitoring of journalists, intimidation and harassment of opposition groups, and surveillance of private citizens.
Sharyl Attkisson has been a journalist for more than thirty years. During that time she has exposed scandals and covered controversies under both Republican and Democratic administrations. She has also seen the opponents of transparency go to ever greater lengths to discourage and obstruct legitimate reporting.
Attkisson herself has been subjected to “opposition research” efforts and spin campaigns. These tactics increased their intensity as she relentlessly pursued stories that the Obama Administration dismissed. Stonewalled is the story of how her news reports were met with a barrage of PR warfare tactics, including online criticism, as well as emails and phone calls up the network chain of command in an effort to intimidate and discourage the next story. In Stonewalled, Attkisson recounts her personal tale, setting it against the larger story of the decline of investigative journalism and unbiased truth telling in America today.
In 1967, Bashir Al-Khayri, a Palestinian twenty-five-year-old, journeyed to Israel, with the goal of seeing the beloved old stone house, with the lemon tree behind it, that he and his family had fled nineteen years earlier. To his surprise, when he found the house he was greeted by Dalia Ashkenazi Landau, a nineteen-year-old Israeli college student, whose family fled Europe for Israel following the Holocaust. On the stoop of their shared home, Dalia and Bashir began a rare friendship, forged in the aftermath of war and tested over the next thirty-five years in ways that neither could imagine on that summer day in 1967. Based on extensive research, and springing from his enormously resonant documentary that aired on NPR's Fresh Air in 1998, Sandy Tolan brings the Israeli-Palestinian conflict down to its most human level, suggesting that even amid the bleakest political realities there exist stories of hope and reconciliation.
Written by Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and New York Times–bestselling author Richard Ben Cramer, What It Takes is “a perfect-pitch rendering of the emotions, the intensity, the anguish, and the emptiness of what may have been the last normal two-party campaign in American history” (Time).
An up-close, in-depth look at six candidates—George H. W. “Poppy” Bush, Bob Dole, Joe Biden, Michael Dukakis, Richard Gephardt, and Gary Hart—this account of the 1988 US presidential campaign explores a unique moment in history, with details on everything from Bush at the Astrodome to Hart’s Donna Rice scandal. Cramer also addresses the question we find ourselves pondering every four years: How do presumably ordinary people acquire that mixture of ambition, stamina, and pure shamelessness that allows them to throw their hat in the ring as a candidate for leadership of the free world?
Exhaustively researched from thousands of hours of interviews, What It Takes creates powerful portraits of these Republican and Democratic contenders, and the consultants, donors, journalists, handlers, and hangers-on who surround them, as they meet, greet, and strategize their way through primary season chasing the nomination, resulting in “a hipped-up amalgam of Teddy White, Tom Wolfe, and Norman Mailer” (Los Angeles Times Book Review).
With timeless insight that helps us understand the current state of the nation, this “ultimate insider’s book on presidential politics” explores what helps these people survive, what makes them prosper, what drives them, and ultimately, what drives our government—human beings, in all their flawed glory (San Francisco Chronicle).
When our founding fathers secured the Constitutional “right of the people to keep and bear arms,” they also added the admonition that this right SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.
It is the only time this phrase appears in the Bill of Rights. So why aren’t more people listening?
History has proven that guns are essential to self-defense and liberty—but tragedy is a powerful force and has led many to believe that guns are the enemy, that the Second Amendment is outdated, and that more restrictions or outright bans on firearms will somehow solve everything.
They are wrong.
In CONTROL, Glenn Beck presents a passionate, fact-based case for guns that reveals why gun control isn’t really about controlling guns at all; it’s about controlling us. In doing so, he takes on and debunks the common myths and outright lies that are often used to vilify guns and demean their owners:
The Second Amendment is ABOUT MUSKETS . . . GUN CONTROL WORKS in other countries . . . 40 percent of all guns are sold without BACKGROUND CHECKS . . . More GUNS MEAN more MURDER . . . Mass shootings are becoming more common . . . These awful MASSACRES ARE UNIQUE TO AMERICA . . . No CIVILIAN needs a “weapon of war” like the AR-15 . . . ARMED GUARDS in schools do nothing, just look at Columbine . . . Stop FEARMONGERING, no one is talking about TAKING YOUR GUNS AWAY.
Backed by hundreds of sources, this handbook gives everyone who cares about the Second Amendment the indisputable facts they need to reclaim the debate, defeat the fear, and take back their natural rights.
Have you ever wondered what was really meant by one or more of the ten amendments?
Have you ever been unsure as to how these rights apply to modern society?
Have you even questioned if the Bill of Rights should still be held as inviolable law, nearly 250 years after its writing?
Here's the truth: the Bill of Rights is not easy to understand if you just pick it up and give it a read. The eloquent style in which it's written can be confusing. The language can cause misunderstandings. There's a lot of legal terminology that's beyond most of us. Without an understanding of the historical background of certain amendments, it's impossible to fully understand their importance and scope. And to top it all off, there are countless politicians and pundits that try to interpret our rights for us and tell us what the Founders meant.
But are you comfortable letting crooked politicians decide what your rights are? Or would you rather know and be able to insist on, with certainty, the freedoms our Founders intended for you, your family, your friends, and your fellow Americans? If you're like millions of other Americans, you'll choose the latter.
Thomas Jefferson said, "Educate and inform the whole mass of the people...They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty." He also said, "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was and never will be."
That's why this book was created, and it would make the Founders proud if they were here today. This book helps you easily reach a deep understanding of the Bill of Rights by walking you through each amendment, clarifying the precise definitions of key words; providing the historical context you need to fully grasp and spirit and importance of the amendments; sharing powerfully insightful quotes on each amendment, straight from the Founders and their peers; supplying you with an extensive glossary of terms so you never get lost in a dictionary or encyclopedia trying to understand what you're reading; and more.
The Founders fought tirelessly to guarantee you specific rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Don't let two-faced politicians and pundits tell you what your rights are.
Scroll up and click the "Buy" button now to learn your rights, and together, we can keep the spirit of freedom alive in this great nation.
The Limits of Power identifies a profound triple crisis facing America: the economy, in remarkable disarray, can no longer be fixed by relying on expansion abroad; the government, transformed by an imperial presidency, is a democracy in form only; U.S. involvement in endless wars, driven by a deep infatuation with military power, has been a catastrophe for the body politic. These pressing problems threaten all of us, Republicans and Democrats. If the nation is to solve its predicament, it will need the revival of a distinctly American approach: the neglected tradition of realism.
Andrew J. Bacevich, uniquely respected across the political spectrum, offers a historical perspective on the illusions that have governed American policy since 1945. The realism he proposes includes respect for power and its limits; sensitivity to unintended consequences; aversion to claims of exceptionalism; skepticism of easy solutions, especially those involving force; and a conviction that the books will have to balance. Only a return to such principles, Bacevich argues, can provide common ground for fixing America's urgent problems before the damage becomes irreparable.
The United States is in the midst of an economic implosion that could make the Great Depression look like child's play. In THE CRASH OF 2016, Thom Hartmann argues that the facade of our once-great United States will soon disintegrate to reveal the rotting core where corporate and billionaire power and greed have replaced democratic infrastructure and governance. Our once-enlightened political and economic systems have been manipulated to ensure the success of only a fraction of the population at the expense of the rest of us.
The result is a "for the rich, by the rich" scheme leading to policies that only benefit the highest bidders. Hartmann outlines the destructive forces-planted by Lewis Powell in 1971 and come to fruition with the "Reagan Revolution"-that have looted our nation over the past decade, and how their actions fit into a cycle of American history that lets such forces rise to power every four generations.
However, a backlash is now palpable against the "economic royalists"-a term coined by FDR to describe those hoarding power and wealth-including the banksters, oligarchs, and politicians who have plunged our nation into economic chaos and social instability.
Although we are in the midst of what could become the most catastrophic economic crash in American History, a way forward is emerging, just as it did in the previous great crashes of the 1760s, 1856, and 1929. The choices we make now will redefine American culture. Before us stands a genuine opportunity to embrace the moral motive over the profit motive-and to rebuild the American economic model that once yielded great success.
Thoroughly researched and passionately argued, THE CRASH OF 2016 is not just a roadmap to redemption in post-Crash America, but a critical wake-up call, challenging us to act. Only if the right reforms are enacted and the moral choices are made, can we avert disaster and make our nation whole again.
In a sweeping narrative about the people and the politics behind the budget--a topic that is fiercely debated today in the halls of Congress and the media, and yet is often misunderstood by the American public--Wessel looks at the 2011 fiscal year (which ended September 30) to see where all the money was actually spent, and why the budget process has grown wildly out of control. Through the eyes of key people, including Jacob Lew, White House director of the Office of Management and Budget; Douglas Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office; Blackstone founder and former Commerce Secretary Pete Peterson; and more, Wessel gives readers an inside look at the making of our unsustainable budget.
All the Presidents' Bankers is a groundbreaking narrative of how an elite group of men transformed the American economy and government, dictated foreign and domestic policy, and shaped world history.
Culled from original presidential archival documents, All the Presidents' Bankers delivers an explosive account of the hundred-year interdependence between the White House and Wall Street that transcends a simple analysis of money driving politics—or greed driving bankers.
Prins ushers us into the intimate world of exclusive clubs, vacation spots, and Ivy League universities that binds presidents and financiers. She unravels the multi-generational blood, intermarriage, and protégé relationships that have confined national influence to a privileged cluster of people. These families and individuals recycle their power through elected office and private channels in Washington, DC.
All the Presidents' Bankers sheds new light on pivotal historic events—such as why, after the Panic of 1907, America's dominant bankers convened to fashion the Federal Reserve System; how J. P. Morgan's ambitions motivated President Wilson during World War I; how Chase and National City Bank chairmen worked secretly with President Roosevelt to rescue capitalism during the Great Depression while J.P. Morgan Jr. invited Roosevelt's son yachting; and how American financiers collaborated with President Truman to construct the World Bank and IMF after World War II.
Prins divulges how, through the Cold War and Vietnam era, presidents and bankers pushed America's superpower status and expansion abroad, while promoting broadly democratic values and social welfare at home. But from the 1970s, Wall Street's rush to secure Middle East oil profits altered the nature of political-financial alliances. Bankers' profit motive trumped heritage and allegiance to public service, while presidents lost control over the economy—as was dramatically evident in the financial crisis of 2008.
This unprecedented history of American power illuminates how the same financiers retained their authoritative position through history, swaying presidents regardless of party affiliation. All the Presidents' Bankers explores the alarming global repercussions of a system lacking barriers between public office and private power. Prins leaves us with an ominous choice: either we break the alliances of the power elite, or they will break us.
A rallying cry for revolutionizing democracy in the digital age, Citizenville reveals how ordinary Americans can reshape their government for the better. Gavin Newsom, the lieutenant governor of California, argues that today’s government is stuck in the last century while—in both the private sector and our personal lives—absolutely everything else has changed. The explosion of social media, the evolution of Internet commerce, the ubiquity of smart phones that can access all the world’s information; in the face of these extraordinary advances, our government appears increasingly irrelevant and out of touch.
Drawing on wide-ranging interviews with thinkers and politicians, Newsom’s Citizenville shows how Americans can transform their government, taking matters into their own hands to dissolve political gridlock even as they produce tangible changes in the real world. When local Web designers wanted to prevent muggings in Chicago and Oakland, they created innovative crime-mapping tools using public police data. When congressional representatives wanted citizens’ input on new legislation, they used interactive blogging tools to invite public comments and changes. When a town in Texas needed to drum up civic engagement, officials invented a local digital “currency” to reward citizens for participating in government—making small-town politics suddenly as fun and addictive as online games such as Farmville. Surveying the countless small advances made by ordinary Americans in reinventing government for the twenty-first century, Newsom unveils a path for American prosperity and democratic vitality.
Newsom explains how twenty-first-century problems are too big and too expensive for the government simply to buy solutions; instead, Americans must innovate their way out. Just as the post office and the highway system provide public infrastructure to channel both personal and private enterprise—a platform upon which citizens can grow—so too could a modern digital government house the needs, concerns, information, and collaboration of an enlightened digital citizenry.
A vision for better government that truly achieves the ancient goal of commonwealth and a triumphant call for individuals to reinvigorate the country with their own two hands, Citizenville is a timely road map for restoring American prosperity and for reinventing citizenship in today’s networked age.
"Thank you, Howard Zinn. Thank you for telling us what none of our leaders are willing to: The truth. And you tell it with such brilliance, such humanity. It is a personal honor to be able to say I am a better citizen because of you." —Michael Moore, director of Fahrenheit 9/11
"This strong, incisive book by Howard Zinn provides us with a penetrating critique of current U.S. policies and embraces the sweep of history. . . . A Power Governments Cannot Suppress leaves us with the faith that citizens have what it takes to confront power and to reverse the dangerous and unjust acts of our government." —Jonathan Kozol, author of The Shame of the Nation: The Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America
"Find here the voice of the well-educated and honorable and capable and humane United States of America, which might have existed if only absolute power had not corrupted its third-rate leaders so absolutely." —Kurt Vonnegut, author of A Man Without a Country
"Howard Zinn is a unique voice of sanity, clarity, and wisdom who reads history not only to understand the present but to shape the future . . . . Profoundly insightful . . . A Power Governments Cannot Suppress should be read by every American, over and over again." —Michael Lerner, editor of Tikkun Magazine
"Zinn writes with an enthusiasm rarely encountered in the leaden prose of academic history. . ." —New York Times Book Review
"Zinn collects here almost three dozen brief, passionate essays that follow in the tradition of his landmark work, A People's History of the United States . . . Readers seeking to break out of their ideological comfort zones will find much to ponder here." —Publishers Weekly
Howard Zinn was an acclaimed historian, playwright, and combat veteran of World War II. He was the author of more than two dozen books, including his masterpiece A People's History of the United States, and The Historic Unfulfilled Promise (City Lights).
The United States has been "at war" in Iraq and Afghanistan for more than a decade. Yet as war has become normalized, a yawning gap has opened between America's soldiers and veterans and the society in whose name they fight. For ordinary citizens, as former secretary of defense Robert Gates has acknowledged, armed conflict has become an "abstraction" and military service "something for other people to do."
In Breach of Trust, bestselling author Andrew J. Bacevich takes stock of the separation between Americans and their military, tracing its origins to the Vietnam era and exploring its pernicious implications: a nation with an abiding appetite for war waged at enormous expense by a standing army demonstrably unable to achieve victory. Among the collateral casualties are values once considered central to democratic practice, including the principle that responsibility for defending the country should rest with its citizens.
Citing figures as diverse as the martyr-theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the marine-turned-anti-warrior Smedley Butler, Breach of Trust summons Americans to restore that principle. Rather than something for "other people" to do, national defense should become the business of "we the people." Should Americans refuse to shoulder this responsibility, Bacevich warns, the prospect of endless war, waged by a "foreign legion" of professionals and contractor-mercenaries, beckons. So too does bankruptcy—moral as well as fiscal.
Washington is no longer about lawmaking, it’s about moneymaking
Conventional wisdom holds that Washington is broken because outside special interests bribe politicians. The reverse is true: politicians have developed a new set of brass-knuckle legislative tactics designed to extort wealthy industries and donors into forking over big donations — cash that lawmakers often funnel into the pockets of their friends and family.
Inside this best-selling bombshell of a book, Schweizer reveals the exorbitant secret “fees” each political party charges politicians for top committee assignments; how fourteen members of Congress bagged hundreds of thousands of dollars using a little-known self-loan loophole; how politicians use PACs to bankroll lavish lifestyles; and much more. Washington’s extortion racket has gone unreported — until now.
From Anthony Everitt, the bestselling author of acclaimed biographies of Cicero, Augustus, and Hadrian, comes a riveting, magisterial account of Rome and its remarkable ascent from an obscure agrarian backwater to the greatest empire the world has ever known.
Emerging as a market town from a cluster of hill villages in the eighth and seventh centuries B.C., Rome grew to become the ancient world’s preeminent power. Everitt fashions the story of Rome’s rise to glory into an erudite page-turner filled with lasting lessons for our time. He chronicles the clash between patricians and plebeians that defined the politics of the Republic. He shows how Rome’s shrewd strategy of offering citizenship to her defeated subjects was instrumental in expanding the reach of her burgeoning empire. And he outlines the corrosion of constitutional norms that accompanied Rome’s imperial expansion, as old habits of political compromise gave way, leading to violence and civil war. In the end, unimaginable wealth and power corrupted the traditional virtues of the Republic, and Rome was left triumphant everywhere except within its own borders.
Everitt paints indelible portraits of the great Romans—and non-Romans—who left their mark on the world out of which the mighty empire grew: Cincinnatus, Rome’s George Washington, the very model of the patrician warrior/aristocrat; the brilliant general Scipio Africanus, who turned back a challenge from the Carthaginian legend Hannibal; and Alexander the Great, the invincible Macedonian conqueror who became a role model for generations of would-be Roman rulers. Here also are the intellectual and philosophical leaders whose observations on the art of government and “the good life” have inspired every Western power from antiquity to the present: Cato the Elder, the famously incorruptible statesman who spoke out against the decadence of his times, and Cicero, the consummate orator whose championing of republican institutions put him on a collision course with Julius Caesar and whose writings on justice and liberty continue to inform our political discourse today.
Rome’s decline and fall have long fascinated historians, but the story of how the empire was won is every bit as compelling. With The Rise of Rome, one of our most revered chroniclers of the ancient world tells that tale in a way that will galvanize, inform, and enlighten modern readers.
Praise for The Rise of Rome
“Fascinating history and a great read.”—Chicago Sun-Times
“An engrossing history of a relentlessly pugnacious city’s 500-year rise to empire.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Rome’s history abounds with remarkable figures. . . . Everitt writes for the informed and the uninformed general reader alike, in a brisk, conversational style, with a modern attitude of skepticism and realism.”—The Dallas Morning News
“[A] lively and readable account . . . Roman history has an uncanny ability to resonate with contemporary events.”—Maclean’s
“Elegant, swift and faultless as an introduction to his subject.”—The Spectator
“[An] engaging work that will captivate and inform from beginning to end.”—Booklist
October 2006: The world finds out why.
What was really behind the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq? As George W. Bush steered the nation to war, who spoke the truth and who tried to hide it? Hubris takes us behind the scenes at the Bush White House, the CIA, the Pentagon, the State Department, and Congress to answer all the vital questions about how the Bush administration came to invade Iraq.
Filled with new revelations, Hubris is a gripping narrative of intrigue that connects the dots between George W. Bush’s expletive-laden outbursts at Saddam Hussein, the bitter battles between the CIA and the White House, the fights within the intelligence community over Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction, the startling influence of an obscure academic on top government officials, the real reason Valerie Plame was outed, and a top reporter’s ties to wily Iraqi exiles trying to start a war. Written by veteran reporters Michael Isikoff and David Corn, this is the inside story of how President Bush took the nation to war using faulty and fraudulent intelligence. It is a news-making account of conspiracy, backstabbing, bureaucratic ineptitude, journalistic malfeasance, and, especially, arrogance.
From the Hardcover edition.
And who is being held accountable? Government regulation and red tape run amok in Washington, and honest, tax-paying citizens are the victims of an administration's misuse and abuse of power. Now, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, takes an in-depth look at the legislation that is trampling the rights of ordinary citizens, strangling their ability to conduct private, everyday activities without egregious government interference. He highlights outrageous searches, seizures and arrests, and points to thousands of regulations that have been added to the books since Obama took office. Most importantly, he charts a direction out of this mess, and toward renewed freedom for all Americans.
These stories are of everyday Americans badgered and harassed by their own government---the very institution that is supposed to serve us all. This gross breach of our constitution is as frightening as it is real, and GOVERNMENT BULLIES is a call to action against it.
—Ted Nugent, Washington Times
Michael Savage, the mega-popular radio host and New York Times bestselling author of Trickle Up Poverty, offers an explosive election-year call to arms to retake the White House from the clutches of tyranny and preserve American greatness. Staunchly determined to help “crush Barack Obama’s dreams of a Socialist America,” Savage unleashes a relentless barrage of conservative common sense in Trickle Down Tyranny, designed to help patriotic citizens preserve what is good and right in our imperiled nation.
Crossing the Rubicon is unique not only for its case-breaking examination of 9/11, but for the breadth and depth of its world picture—an interdisciplinary analysis of petroleum, geopolitics, narcotraffic, intelligence and militarism—without which 9/11 cannot be understood.
The US manufacturing sector has been mostly replaced by speculation on financial data whose underlying economic reality is a dark secret. Hundreds of billions of dollars in laundered drug money flow through Wall Street each year from opium and coca fields maintained by CIA-sponsored warlords and US-backed covert paramilitary violence. America’s global dominance depends on a continually turning mill of guns, drugs, oil and money. Oil and natural gas—the fuels that make economic growth possible—are subsidized by American military force and foreign lending.
In reality, 9/11 and the resulting “war on terror” are parts of a massive authoritarian response to an emerging economic crisis of unprecedented scale. Peak Oil—the beginning of the end for our industrial civilization—is driving the élites of American power to implement unthinkably draconian measures of repression, warfare and population control. Crossing the Rubicon is more than a story. It is a map of the perilous terrain through which, together and alone, we are all now making our way.
In January of 1973 Richard Nixon announced the end of the Vietnam War and prepared for a triumphant second term—until televised Watergate hearings revealed his White House as little better than a mafia den. The next president declared upon Nixon’s resignation “our long national nightmare is over”—but then congressional investigators exposed the CIA for assassinating foreign leaders. The collapse of the South Vietnamese government rendered moot the sacrifice of some 58,000 American lives. The economy was in tatters. And as Americans began thinking about their nation in a new way—as one more nation among nations, no more providential than any other—the pundits declared that from now on successful politicians would be the ones who honored this chastened new national mood.
Ronald Reagan never got the message. Which was why, when he announced his intention to challenge President Ford for the 1976 Republican nomination, those same pundits dismissed him—until, amazingly, it started to look like he just might win. He was inventing the new conservative political culture we know now, in which a vision of patriotism rooted in a sense of American limits was derailed in America’s Bicentennial year by the rise of the smiling politician from Hollywood. Against a backdrop of melodramas from the Arab oil embargo to Patty Hearst to the near-bankruptcy of America’s greatest city, The Invisible Bridge asks the question: what does it mean to believe in America? To wave a flag—or to reject the glibness of the flag wavers?
In a sweeping, propulsive, and multilayered narrative, The Way of the World investigates how America relinquished the moral leadership it now desperately needs to fight the real threat of our era: a nuclear weapon in the hands of terrorists. Truth, justice, and accountability become more than mere words in this story. Suskind shows where the most neglected dangers lie in the story of "The Armageddon Test" —a desperate gamble to send undercover teams into the world's nuclear black market to frustrate the efforts of terrorists trying to procure weapons-grade uranium. In the end, he finally reveals for the first time the explosive falsehood underlying the Iraq War and the entire Bush presidency.
While the public and political realms struggle, The Way of the World simultaneously follows an ensemble of characters in America and abroad who are turning fear and frustration into a desperate—and often daring—brand of human salvation. They include a striving, twenty-four-year-old Pakistani émigré, a fearless UN refugee commissioner, an Afghan teenager, a Holocaust survivor's son, and Benazir Bhutto, who discovers, days before her death, how she's been abandoned by the United States at her moment of greatest need. They are all testing American values at a time of peril, and discovering solutions—human solutions—to so much that has gone wrong.
For anyone hoping to exercise truly informed consent and begin the process of restoring the values and hope—along with the moral clarity and earned optimism—at the heart of the American tradition, The Way of the World is a must-read.
In his newest book, Hedges argues that the conscious inertia of the left is destroying the progressive movement. Inaction and empty moral posturing leads not to change, but to an orgy of self-adulation and self-pity.
Hedges argues that the gravest danger we face as a nation is not from the far right, although the right may well inherit power. Instead, the threat comes from a bankrupt liberal class that has lost the will to fight and the moral courage to stand up for what it espouses.
What now? Despite the rancorous, divisive, year-long debate in Washington, many Americans still don’t understand what the historic overhaul of the health care system will—or won’t—mean. In Landmark, the national reporting staff of The Washington Post pierces through the confusion, examining the new law’s likely impact on us all: our families, doctors, hospitals, health care providers, insurers, and other parts of a health care system that has grown to occupy one-sixth of the U.S. economy.
Landmark’s behind-the-scenes narrative reveals how just how close the law came to defeat, as well as the compromises and deals that President Obama and his Democratic majority in Congress made in achieving what has eluded their predecessors for the past seventy-five years: A legislative package that expands and transforms American health care coverage.
Landmark is an invaluable resource for anyone eager to understand the changes coming our way.