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Gangs of America

Book Description

The corporation has become the core institution of the modern world. Designed to seek profit and power, it has pursued both with endless tenacity, steadily bending the framework of law and even challenging the sovereign status of the state. Where did the corporation come from? How did it get so much power? What is its ultimate trajectory? After he sold his successful computer book publishing business to a large corporation, Ted Nace felt increasingly driven to find answers to these questions. In Gangs of America he details the rise of corporate power in America through a series of fascinating stories, each organized around a different facet of the central question: "How did corporations get more rights than people?" Beginning with the origin of the corporation in medieval Great Britain, Nace traces both the events that shaped the evolution of corporate power and the colorful personalities who played major roles. Gangs of America is a uniquely accessible synthesis of the latest scholarly research, a compelling historical narrative, and a distinctive personal voice.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Acknowledgments
  5. Introduction
  6. ♦ CHAPTER ONE ♦ How Did Corporations Get So Much Power? In which the author reads a poll, feels provoked and befuddled, and organizes his investigation
  7. ♦ CHAPTER TWO ♦ From Street Fights to Empire The British roots of the American corporation (1267-1773)
  8. ♦ CHAPTER THREE ♦ The Ultimate Reality Show The brutal history of the Virginia Company (1607-1624)
  9. ♦ CHAPTER FOUR ♦ Why the Colonists Feared Corporations … In which the citizens of Boston demonstrate the use of the hatchet as an anti-monopoly device (1770-1773)
  10. ♦ CHAPTER FIVE ♦ … And What They Did About It How the framers of the American system restrained corporate power (1787-1850)
  11. ♦ CHAPTER SIX ♦ The Genius The man who reinvented the corporation (1850-1880)
  12. ♦ CHAPTER SEVEN ♦ Superpowers The corporation acquires nine powerful attributes (1860-1900)
  13. ♦ CHAPTER EIGHT ♦ The Judge Stephen Field and the politics ofpersonhood (1868-1885)
  14. ♦ CHAPTER NINE ♦ The Court Reporter Who really decided the Supreme Court’s most important corporate case? (1886)
  15. ♦ CHAPTER TEN ♦ The Lavender-Vested Turkey Gobbler How a “majestic, super-eminent” lawyer deceived the Supreme Court (1883)
  16. ♦ CHAPTER ELEVEN ♦ Survival of the Fittest “People power” versus a social Darwinist agenda (1886-1937)
  17. ♦ CHAPTER TWELVE ♦ The Revolt of the Bosses The new mobilization of corporate political power (1971-2002)
  18. ♦ CHAPTER THIRTEEN ♦ Speech = Money Using the First Amendment to block campaign finance reform
  19. ♦ CHAPTER FOURTEEN ♦ Judicial Yoga The tangled logic of corporate rights
  20. ♦ CHAPTER FIFTEEN ♦ Crime Wave The roots of the scandals of 2002
  21. ♦ CHAPTER SIXTEEN ♦ Global Rule How international trade agreements are creating new corporate rights
  22. ♦ CHAPTER SEVENTEEN ♦ Fighting Back A movement emerges to challenge corporate hegemony
  23. ♦ CHAPTER EIGHTEEN ♦ Intelligent, Amoral, Evolving The hazards of persistent dynamic entities
  24. ♦ CHAPTER NINETEEN ♦ So What’s the Alternative? The vision of economic democracy
  25. ♦ APPENDIX A ♦ SUPREME COURT DECISIONS
  26. ♦ APPENDIX B ♦ THE BILL OF RIGHTS AND THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT
  27. Notes
    1. INTRODUCTION
    2. ONE: HOW DID CORPORATIONS GET SO MUCH POWER?
    3. TWO: FROM STREET FIGHTS TO EMPIRE
    4. THREE: THE ULTIMATE REALITY SHOW
    5. FOUR: WHY THE COLONISTS FEARED CORPORATIONS…???
    6. FIVE: … AND WHAT THEY DID ABOUT IT
    7. SIX: THE GENIUS
    8. SEVEN: SUPERPOWERS
    9. EIGHT: THE JUDGE
    10. NINE: THE COURT REPORTER
    11. TEN: THE LAVENDER-BREASTED TURKEY GOBBLER
    12. ELEVEN: SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST
    13. TWELVE: THE REVOLT OF THE BOSSES
    14. THIRTEEN: SPEECH = MONEY
    15. FOURTEEN: JUDICIAL YOGA
    16. FIFTEEN: CRIME WAVE
    17. SIXTEEN: GLOBAL RULE
    18. SEVENTEEN: FIGHTING BACK
    19. EIGHTEEN: INTELLIGENT, AMORAL, EVOLVING
    20. NINETEEN: SO WHAT’S THE ALTERNATIVE?
  28. References
  29. Index
  30. About the Author
  31. About Berrett-Koehler Publishers
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