Health care fixes, central-bank smackdowns and the economics of LeBron James: Editor-in-Chief Steve Forbes selects (in no particular order) his eight favourite books of the year—several penned by current or former Forbes contributors.
Team Genius: The New Science of High-Performing Organizations
By Rich Karlgaard and Michael S MaloneHarper Business, $28
Any large company’s nightmare is being ambushed by smaller, nimbler competitors. How does a big organisation stay innovative and not get bogged down in bureaucracy? Critical to sustained success, this book persuasively argues, is the creation and use of teams, optimally of five to nine individuals. The authors dig through mountains of research to give needed insights on putting the right team together and ensuring that it successfully completes its task.The Devil We Know: Dealing With the New Iranian Superpower
By Robert BaerBroadway Books, $15
Published in 2008, this strange but important book is particularly relevant now. Baer, an ex-CIA agent, posits that Iran is a rising regional and global power and that the best course for the US is to appease the mullahs. Saudi Arabia, Iraq and the Gulf states are destined to become Iranian satrapies, while Egypt will be an impotent bystander. What makes this tome eerily notable is that it totally explains President Obama’s actions in that part of the world, particularly this year’s capitulation to Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Did Obama read this book? He could have written it.Popular Economics: What the Rolling Stones, Downton Abbey and LeBron James Can Teach You About Economics
By John TamnyRegnery Publishing, $28
If you have kids or grandchildren attending college, give them this book over the holidays with the admonition: “Don’t waste your time taking economics courses; read this instead. You’ll learn all you really need to know and avoid cluttering your mind with wrongheaded concepts.” Adam Smith would have applauded this masterpiece.
The 21st Century Case for Gold: A New Information Theory of Money
By George GilderAmerican Principles Project, free
The famed technologist turns his formidable mind to money and compellingly explains how the perverted policies of central banks today are wreaking havoc. What gives this absorbing treatise special force is Gilder’s tying the subject of money to one of the critical building blocks of high tech, Claude Shannon’s information theory. In this vein, Gilder’s analysis of the bitcoin phenomenon is especially helpful.Wealth, Poverty and Politics: An International Perspective
By Thomas SowellBasic Books, $30
It’s a scandal that economist Thomas Sowell has not been awarded the Nobel Prize. No one alive has turned out so many insightful, richly researched books. His latest is another triumph of crackling observations that underscore the ignorance of our economists and policymakers. His take on how culture, geography, politics and social factors affect how societies progress—or don’t—will rile those addicted to political correctness but leave everyone else wiser.Reviving America: How Repealing Obamacare, Replacing the Tax Code and Reforming the Fed Will Restore Hope and Prosperity
By Steve Forbes and Elizabeth AmesMcGraw-Hill Education, $26
I’ll take a cue from the Donald and trumpet my latest, which will be released December 8. Candidates and policy-makers could do worse than to imbibe the principles espoused here!The Power of Relentless: 7 Secrets to Achieving Mega-Success, Financial Freedom and the Life of Your Dreams
By Wayne Allyn RootRegnery Publishing, $28
Consuming this engaging book by outsize personality Root is the perfect way to prepare for making your New Year’s resolutions. It’s telling that both Donald Trump and Ben Carson have endorsed Root’s opus.
Catastrophic Care: Why Everything We Think We Know About Health Care Is Wrong
By David GoldhillKnopf, $17
Published two years ago, this offers a thorough analysis of what ails American medicine. Read it and you’ll be prepared when this issue explodes again after the 2016 elections.
(This story appears in the 11 December, 2015 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)