History of Business
Featured Items
The First Billion Is the Hardest: Reflections on a Life of Comebacks and America's Energy Future
The First Billion Is the Hardest
Reflections on a Life of Comebacks and America's Energy Future
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 0307395774

The man whose corporate takeover attempts and shareholder activism reshaped the oil industry in the 1980s recounts his most awe-inspiring comeback, which saw him net over a billion dollars in his seventh decade. 8-page b&w photo insert.

Non-Stop: A Turbulent History of Northwest Airlines
Non-Stop
A Turbulent History of Northwest Airlines
Hardcover      ISBN: 0816674450

From its earliest flights in 1926, carrying mail and occasionally a solo passenger to Chicago, to its acquisition by Delta in 2010, Northwest Airlines soared to the heights of technological achievement and business innovation--and sunk to the depths of employee discord, passenger dissatisfaction, and financial bankruptcy. Its story, rich in singular successes and failures, also has the sweep of the history of American business in the twentieth century. Non-Stop: A Turbulent History of Northwest Airlines captures both the broad context and the intriguing details as it weaves together the accounts of individuals who gave the airline its unique character: from founder Lewis Brittin and pioneering female executive "Rosie" Stein to the CEOs who saw the company through its glory days and its final tumultuous decade.

What was it like to pilot a crippled airliner, to be in the vanguard of the new profession of stewardess, to ride in the cabin of a luxurious Stratocruiser for the first time? These are the experiences that come alive as Jack El-Hai follows Northwest from its humble beginnings to its triumph as the envy of the airline industry and then ultimately to its decline into what aggrieved passengers and employees called "Northworst."

Non-Stop hits the airline's high points (such as its contributions during World War II and the Korean War) and the low--D. B. Cooper's parachute getaway from a Northwest airliner in 1971 and a terrorist's disruption of the airline's last year. Touching on everything from airline food and advertising to smoking regulations and labor relations, the story of Northwest Airlines encapsulates the profound changes to business, travel, and culture that marked the twentieth century.

Ponzi's Scheme: The True Story of a Financial Legend
Ponzi's Scheme
The True Story of a Financial Legend
Paperback      ISBN: 0812968360

It was a time when anything seemed possible-instant wealth, glittering fame, fabulous luxury-and for a run of magical weeks in the spring and summer of 1920, Charles Ponzi made it all come true. Promising to double investors' money in three months, the dapper, charming Ponzi raised the "rob Peter to pay Paul" scam to an art form. At the peak of his success, Ponzi was raking in more than $2 million a week at his office in downtown Boston. Then his house of cards came crashing down-thanks in large part to the relentless investigative reporting of Richard Grozier's Boston Post. A classic American tale of immigrant life and the dream of success, Ponzi's Scheme is the amazing story of the magnetic scoundrel who launched the most successful scheme of financial alchemy in modern history.

Inside the Mouse: Work and Play at Disney World
Inside the Mouse
Work and Play at Disney World
Paperback      ISBN: 0822316242

This entertaining and playful book views Disney World as much more than the site of an ideal family vacation. Blending personal meditations, interviews, photographs, and cultural analysis, Inside the Mouse looks at Disney World's architecture and design, its consumer practices, and its use of Disney characters and themes. This book takes the reader on an alternative ride through "the happiest place on earth" while asking "What makes this forty-three-square-mile theme park the quintessential embodiment of American leisure?"
Turning away from the programmed entertainment that Disney presents, the authors take a peek behind the scenes of everyday experience at Disney World. In their consideration of the park as both private corporate enterprise and public urban environment, the authors focus on questions concerning the production and consumption of leisure. Featuring over fifty photographs and interviews with workers that strip "cast members" of their cartoon costumes, this captivating work illustrates the high-pressure dynamics of the typical family vacation as well as a tour of Disney World that looks beyond the controlled facade of themed attractions.
As projects like EuroDisney and the proposed Disney America test the strength of the Disney cultural monolith, Inside the Mouse provides a timely assessment of the serious business of supplying pleasure in contemporary U.S. culture. Written for the general reader interested in the many worlds of Disney, this engrossing volume will also find fans among students and scholars of cultural studies.

Fooling Some of the People All of the Time, a Long Short (and Now Complete) Story, Updated with New Epilogue
Fooling Some of the People All of the Time, a Long Short (and Now Complete) Story, Updated with New Epilogue
Paperback      ISBN: 0470481544
A revealing look at Wall Street, the financial media, and financial regulators by David Einhorn, the President of Greenlight Capital

Could 2008's credit crisis have been minimized or even avoided? In 2002, David Einhorn-one of the country's top investors-was asked at a charity investment conference to share his best investment advice. Short sell Allied Capital. At the time, Allied was a leader in the private financing industry. Einhorn claimed Allied was using questionable accounting practices to prop itself up. Sound familiar? At the time of the original version of Fooling Some of the People All of the Time: A Long Short Story the outcome of his advice was unknown. Now, the story is complete and we know Einhorn was right. In 2008, Einhorn advised the same conference to short sell Lehman Brothers. And had the market been more open to his warnings, yes, the market meltdown might have been avoided, or at least minimized.

  • Details the gripping battle between Allied Capital and Einhorn's Greenlight Capital
  • Illuminates how questionable company practices are maintained and, at times, even protected by Wall Street
  • Describes the failings of investment banks, analysts, journalists, and government regulators
  • Describes how many parts of the Allied Capital story were replayed in the debate over Lehman Brothers

Fooling Some of the People All of the Time is an important call for effective government regulation, free speech, and fair play.

The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story
The New New Thing
A Silicon Valley Story
Paperback      ISBN: 0140296468

As American capitalism undergoes a seismic shift, Michael Lewis, author of the bestselling Liar's Poker, sets out on a Silicon Valley safari to find the true representative of the coming economic age. All roads lead to Jim Clark, the man who rewrote the rules of American capitalism as the founder of (so far) three multi-billion dollar companies--Silicon Graphics, Netscape, and Healtheon. Lewis's shrewd, often brilliantly funny, narrative provides ahead-of-the-curve observations about the Internet explosion and how the success of Silicon Valley companies is forcing a reassessment of traditional Wall-Street business models.

Weaving Clark's story together with that of this new business phenomenon, Lewis has drawn us a map of markets and free enterprise in the twenty-first century and blown the lid off the changing economy.

Winning Our Energy Independence: An Energy Insider Shows How
Winning Our Energy Independence
An Energy Insider Shows How
Paperback      ISBN: 1423601564

Winning Our Energy Independence shares energy solutions from S. David Freeman, a man who has spent his life at the forefront of energy policy. Freeman explains how the sun, wind, biomass, geothermal, and hydrogen resources we have right now can be the fuels that solve energy issues and create a sustainable future for our planet. These alternative energies will heat and cool our homes, run our cars, power our factories, and do all the things that our civilization requires-but only if we make it happen We have the renewable resources we need-now we simply need the awareness, passion and drive from the people to make sure our politicians and business leaders respond. Winning Our Energy Independence provides action plans for showing us how to influence change.

A Million Little Bricks: The Unofficial Illustrated History of the Lego Phenomenon
A Million Little Bricks
The Unofficial Illustrated History of the Lego Phenomenon
Paperback      ISBN: 1626361185

There aren't many titles that haven't been bestowed on LEGO toys, and it's not hard to see why. From its inception in the early 1930s right up until today, the LEGO Group's history is as colorful as the toys it makes. Few other playthings share the LEGO brand's creative spirit, educative benefits, resilience, quality, and universal appeal. The LEGO name is now synonymous with playtime, but it wasn't always so. This history charts the birth of the LEGO Group in the workshop of a Danish carpenter and its steady growth as a small, family-run toy manufacturer to its current position as a market-leading, award-winning brand. The company's ever-increasing catalog of products--including the earliest wooden toys, plastic bricks, play themes, and other building systems such as DUPLO, Technic, and MINDSTORMS--are chronicled in detail, alongside the manufacturing process, LEGOLAND parks, licensed toys, and computer and video games.
Learn all about how LEGO pulled itself out of an economic crisis and embraced technology to make building blocks relevant to twenty-first-century children, and discover the vibrant fan community of kids and adults whose conventions, websites, and artwork keep the LEGO spirit alive. As nostalgic as it is contemporary, A Million Little Bricks will have you reminiscing about old Classic Space sets, rummaging through the attic for forgotten Minifigure friends, and playing with whatever LEGO bricks you can get your hands on (even if it means sharing with your kids).

Enterprising Minnesotans: 150 Years of Business Pioneers
Enterprising Minnesotans
150 Years of Business Pioneers
Hardcover      ISBN: 0816642192

Everyone has heard of 3M, General Mills, and Pillsbury, but did you know that companies such as Best Buy, Digital River, Chun King, and the Greyhound Bus Company began in Minnesota as well? In Enterprising Minnesotans we read stories of the diverse men and women throughout Minnesota's rich history who have created exceptional organizations. Here are portraits of people driven by an entrepreneurial spirit to found enduring enterprises from 1849 to the present, including Cargill, the Mayo Clinic, Anderson Windows, Ecolab, Schwan's, and Leeann Chin Inc. Meet visionaries such as Cadwallader Washburn of Washburn-Crosby (eventually General Mills), James J. Hill of Great Northern Railway, Colonel Lewis Brittin of Northwest Airlines, and Earl Bakken of Medtronic. Experience the adventurous spirit of James Madison Goodhue, who established the Minnesota Pioneer newspaper, and African American journalist John Quincy Adams, founder of the Appeal, now the Minneapolis Spokesman-Recorder. Find out how Rose Totino, a daughter of poor Italian immigrants, advanced from running her own pizzeria to perfecting the production of frozen pizzas, to becoming a multimillionaire top executive with Pillsbury. Learn about the strength of entrepreneurial families like the Daytons and Fullers, and partnerships such as Jimmy Jam Harris and Terry Lewis, who turned their own successful careers as musicians into an influential R and B production company, Flyte Tyme Records. Through fascinating stories, Enterprising Minnesotans honors the creativity, tenacity, and boldness that enabled these men and women to transform their dreams into success.

The Quest: Energy, Security, and the Remaking Of The Modern World
The Quest
Energy, Security, and the Remaking Of The Modern World
Hardcover      ISBN: 1594202834

Selected by "The New York Times Book Review" as a Notable Book of the Year

In this gripping account of the quest for the energy that our world needs, Daniel Yergin continues the riveting story begun in his Pulitzer Prize-winning book, "The Prize." A master storyteller as well as a leading energy expert, Yergin shows us how energy is an engine of global political and economic change. It is a story that spans the energies on which our civilization has been built and the new energies that are competing to replace them. From the jammed streets of Beijing to the shores of the Caspian Sea, from the conflicts in the Mideast to Capitol Hill and Silicon Valley, Yergin takes us into the decisions that are shaping our future.

The drama of oil-the struggle for access, the battle for control, the insecurity of supply, the consequences of use, its impact on the global economy, and the geopolitics that dominate it-continues to profoundly affect our world.. Yergin tells the inside stories of the oil market and the surge in oil prices, the race to control the resources of the former Soviet empire, and the massive mergers that transformed the landscape of world oil. He tackles the toughest questions: Will we run out of oil? Are China and the United States destined to come into conflict over oil? How will a turbulent Middle East affect the future of oil supply?

Yergin also reveals the surprising and sometimes tumultuous history of nuclear and coal, electricity, and the "shale gale" of natural gas, and how each fits into the larger marketplace. He brings climate change into unique perspective by offering an unprecedented history of how the field of climate study went from the concern of a handful of nineteenth- century scientists preoccupied with a new Ice Age into one of the most significant issues of our times.

He leads us through the rebirth of renewable energies and explores the distinctive stories of wind, solar, and biofuels. He offers a perspective on the return of the electric car, which some are betting will be necessary for a growing global economy.

"The Quest" presents an extraordinary range of characters and dramatic stories that illustrate the principles that will shape a robust and flexible energy security system for the decades to come. Energy is humbling in its scope, but our future requires that we deeply understand this global quest that is truly reshaping our world.