What are you reading right now (II)?

Relayer

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Mar 25, 2001
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The Earth is Weeping. The epic story of the Indian wars of the American west (Peter Cozzens)
 

TexasBama

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Jan 15, 2000
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Just finished "Why We Hate the Oil Companies: Straight Talk from an Energy Insider". It's a bit dated, but I know the author.

Just started "The Shield of Achilles - War, Peace and the Course of History" by Phillip Bobbit (a nephew of LBJ)
 

Bodhisattva

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Aug 22, 2001
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Falcon of Sparta by Conn Iggulden

Novelization of what, in my opinion, is one of the more fascinating events in history and a story of one of history's greatest generals (Xenophon). Greek mercenaries (known as the Ten Thousand) take part in a Persian civil war. Despite dominating their area of the Battle of Cunaxa, their patron (Cyrus the Younger) is killed in battle. At the ensuing truce talks, the Greek generals are betrayed and murdered by the victorious Persian prince (Artaxerxes II). Xenophon (student of Socrates, historian, and pro-Spartan Athenian), at age 30, is elected the new general of the surviving Greeks and is charged with marching the Greeks back across Persia in a fighting retreat against hundreds of thousands of Persians. Sweet nectar for a history junkie! ;)
 

Bodhisattva

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Aug 22, 2001
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Just finished "Why We Hate the Oil Companies: Straight Talk from an Energy Insider". It's a bit dated, but I know the author.

Just started "The Shield of Achilles - War, Peace and the Course of History" by Phillip Bobbit (a nephew of LBJ)
If you are interested in the oil industry, check out The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power by Daniel Yergin. It was published in the early 1990s, and looks at history through an energy sector lens from 1850 to that point. It was turned into a PBS documentary shortly thereafter. Fascinating stuff.
 
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Bodhisattva

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Aug 22, 2001
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I've seem some reviews on Ariely. Should be interesting.
His book didn't provide any revelations for me; it just reinforced the case studies I read in business school. Economic policy should take into account more than math; it needs to pay attention to how policy produces incentives or disincentives to behavior. There are countless lessons that should be obvious, but they are often overlooked. How should compensation be structured? How does one properly encourage productivity? What kind of behavior is a government policy trying to encourage? The private sector often gets things wrong, but corrections (if the company wants to stay in business) are usually made. Government does a horrible job of even recognizing the concept of incentives - both in dealing with employees and with the public at large. But, there are no market forces that make government correct misguided policy.
 

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