CategoryBooks

Lords of Finance

Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World continues my research into wealth inequality and the real-world workings of capitalism.  This book is the story primarily of four men: Norman, Strong, Moreau, and Schadt, the heads of the central banks of the UK, U.S., France, and Germany in the 1910’s through 1940’s. These are the men who restructured the financial world at the end of...

War and Gold

Continuing my series of book reports on economics, I was walking through my public library when the title War and Gold caught my eye.  The book explains (in far too much detail) the history of money over the last 500 years, starting with the Spanish exploitation of the New World and the subsequent flood of silver into Europe and continuing century by century to the Volker/Regan solution to...

The commonly misunderstood tragedy of the commons

Apparently I’ve misunderstood the “Tragedy of the Commons” and so likely have you. This is a great example of a meme that is assumed to be both ancient and obvious, but isn’t.  There was an essay entitled “Tragedy of the Commons” written back in 1833, but it was ignored until Garret Hardin published an article in Science in 1968 with the same title.  It’s...

People before Profit

It took me a few months to finish People before Profit, the inspiring story of Bob Moore, the founder of Bob’s Red Mill.  A friend recommended it, as (spoiler) at age 70 Bob gave the company to his employees. From my other readings on economics, I’m concluding that its the inequality of ownership that is the root cause of both wealth and income inequality.  I was thus eager to read...

The Next Step is now a podcast too…

Here in 2018, it seems a bit 19th Century to focus solely on writing books.  Yes, I also write a blog, and those were not invented until the late 20th Century, but podcasts are one of the 21st Century’s contributions to media, and feels like a medium that is just starting to take off. I’ve thus jumped on the podcasting bandwagon using The Next Step brand from my books as the title and...

Myths and assumptions of tulips

One of the best parts of Debt: The First 5,000 Years was pointing out the myth that economies always begin with barter (hint: they never have). Similarly, whenever a market starts to heat up, we inevitably hear about the tulip bubble in Holland in the 1630’s.  Well… turns out those stories are myths as well.  Anne Goldgar has written a book, Tulipmania: Money, Honor and Knowledge in...

Powerful, building the Netflix culture of Freedom and Responsibility

Entrepreneurs worry about their product, marketing, sales process, recruiting, finances, and operations, but often don’t think twice about designing their corporate culture.  Forget about culture, and successful startups soon turn into The Office and Dilbert. There isn’t yet a The Next Step book on how to design a corporate culture, but I do teach the topic in both my MBA...

The realities of startup life (in Ghana)

All startups are difficult… and they don’t get easier when your startup is in a foreign country… selling a service that no one there has seen before.  Few books due the startup journey justice.  Bright Lights, No City is one of the rare exceptions, telling the story of Burro in Ghana, a company founded by Whit Alexander, creator of Cranium, as told through the eyes and talented...

Fusion Economics, by Laurence J. Brahm

“First they will laugh at you; then they will threaten you; and then they will follow you” – Ghandi Back to my readings on economics and inequality, I found Fusion Economics sitting on my nightstand, shot right through it, and suggest you pick up a copy too. Laurence J Brahm is a real life Forrest Gump, but brilliant is as brilliant does.  Gump, as in his life seems to take him...

The Clean Money Revolution

I met Joel Solomon five years ago.  Someone pointed me to him as knowledgeable and experienced.  I knew of his work Renewal Funds, and a few years ago visited his Hollyhock on Cortes Island in British Columbia, Canada to attend his Social Venture Institute. (Disclosure: sometime in all that he agreed to invest a tiny amount into Fledge, one of my contributions to the field of social good.)...

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