Author du Jour: Jeremy Rifkin

JRifkinAuthor du Jour: Jeremy Rifkin “The Zero Marginal Cost Society.”

The Internet of Things, the Collaborative Commons, and the eclipse of Capitalism are just some the engaging thoughts Jeremy Rifkin proposes in his latest book, The Zero Marginal Society.” When something dies something else must sprout from the ashes and this is the point the book makes. With the slow demise of the capitalist era emerges the new economic system of the Internet of Thing, something transforming our lives radically.

From the Publisher: “Rifkin uncovers a paradox at the heart of capitalism that has propelled it to greatness but is now taking it to its death―the inherent entrepreneurial dynamism of competitive markets that drives productivity up and marginal costs down, enabling businesses to reduce the price of their goods and services in order to win over consumers and market share. (Marginal cost is the cost of producing additional units of a good or service, if fixed costs are not counted.) While economists have always welcomed a reduction in marginal cost, they never anticipated the possibility of a technological revolution that might bring marginal costs to near zero, making goods and services priceless, nearly free, and abundant, and no longer subject to market forces.”

Author du Jour: Anthony Loewenstein

Author du Jour: Anthony Loewenstein “Disaster Capitalism: Making a Killing out of Catastrophe.”

DisasterCapitalismIn this age of global conflicts, there is never a shortage for milking out tragedies. Whether he is dealing with immigrants stuck at borders or immigration centers, destructive mining practices or questionable NGOs in Papua New Guinea where locals have not recourse but to rebel, award-winning journalist Antony Loewenstein gives a first account, from the front line, of the rise of Disaster Capitalism. If you want to learn how companies such as G4S, Serco and Halliburton derive a large part of their profits, this book is for you.

From the publisher: “Award-winning journalist Antony Loewenstein travels across the US, Britain, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea and Australia to witness the reality of Disaster Capitalism—the hidden world of privatized detention centers and militarized private security, formed to protect corporations as they profit from war zones. He visits Britain’s immigration detention centers, tours the prison system in the United States, and digs into the underbelly of the companies making a fortune from them. Loewenstein reveals the dark history of how large multinational corporations have become more powerful than governments, supported by media and political elites.”

Author du Jour: Nick Sousanis

Author du Jour: Nick SousanisUnflattening

Sousanis-UnflatteningIf you are looking something truly original. Something that will make you think, look no further. “Unflattening” is a graphic novel like no other. A PhD dissertation that looks at the way we learn. A meditation on education. Between the theme and depth of the concept with the captivating drawing, Mr. Sousanis is at the helm of an impressive set of skills.

Here below is from the publisher.

Unflattening” is an insurrection against the fixed viewpoint. Weaving together diverse ways of seeing drawn from science, philosophy, art, literature, and mythology, it uses the collage-like capacity of comics to show that perception is always an active process of incorporating and reevaluating different vantage points. While its vibrant, constantly morphing images occasionally serve as illustrations of text, they more often connect in nonlinear fashion to other visual references throughout the book. They become allusions, allegories, and motifs, pitting realism against abstraction and making us aware that more meets the eye than is presented on the page. (Harvard University Press, 2015)

Author du Jour: Cara Brookins

Brookins-LittleBoyBLuAuthor du Jour: Cara Brookins “Little Boy Blu.”

A riveting tale of genetic skin color. Timely metaphor! (published by The Wild Rose Press)

Blu Tracey grew up isolated in the Appalachian Mountains and is the only child in his family without a genetic abnormality that causes blue skin. But when he discovers his mother intentionally had abnormal children for a reality television show, he becomes the target of a killer. If Blu doesn’t expose someone in his own family as a suspect, his siblings will be exploited for their rare, genetic mutation, and worse they could be the next targets in the killer’s pursuit of fame.