The Man Who Ran Washington
From two of America’s most revered political journalists comes the definitive biography of legendary White House chief of staff and secretary of state James A. Baker III: the man who ran Washington when Washington ran the world.
For a quarter-century, from the end of Watergate to the aftermath of the Cold War, no Republican won the presidency without his help or ran the White House without his advice. James Addison Baker III was the indispensable man for four presidents because he understood better than anyone how to make Washington work at a time when America was shaping events around the world. The Man Who Ran Washington is a page-turning portrait of a power broker who influenced America’s destiny for generations.
A scion of Texas aristocracy who became George H. W. Bush’s best friend on the tennis courts of the Houston Country Club, Baker had never even worked in Washington until a devastating family tragedy struck when he was thirty-nine. Within a few years, he was leading Gerald Ford’s campaign and would go on to manage a total of five presidential races and win a sixth for George W. Bush in a Florida recount. He ran Ronald Reagan’s White House and became the most consequential secretary of state since Henry Kissinger. He negotiated with Democrats at home and Soviets abroad, rewrote the tax code, assembled the coalition that won the Gulf War, brokered the reunification of Germany and helped bring a decades-long nuclear superpower standoff to an end. Ruthlessly partisan during campaign season, Baker governed as the avatar of pragmatism over purity and deal-making over division, a lost art in today’s fractured nation.
His story is a case study in the acquisition, exercise, and preservation of power in late twentieth-century America and the story of Washington and the world in the modern era–how it once worked and how it has transformed into an era of gridlock and polarization. This masterly biography by two brilliant observers of the American political scene is destined to become a classic.
Aretha Franklin’s voice was legendary, unforgettable: deeply rooted in gospel, yet versatile enough to brilliantly interpret R&B, rock, soul, pop, and jazz standards, it fueled a six-decade career. Her vocal wallop was a mix of preaching, rebuke, and elation. From the languorous “I Never Loved a Man (the Way That I Love You),” to the funky “Chain of Fools,” to the fiercely feminist “Think,” to the definitive, demanding version of Otis Redding’s “Respect,” Franklin’s songs played out against the tumultuous sociopolitical backdrop of the late ’60s like a soundtrack meant to set things right. Her accolades were many: she received the Kennedy Center honor in 1994, won 18 Grammys®, was the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and performed for presidents and the Pope.
Illustrated with 85 photos, and with insightful text from noted radio personality and author Meredith Ochs, Aretha explores the diva’s life, from her formative years growing up in Detroit, to her singing and recording career from the 1950s until her untimely death in 2018, to her numerous honors, awards, and causes, including her advocacy for civil rights and the arts.
The Kennedys have always been a family of charismatic adventurers, raised to take risks and excel, living by the dual family mottos: “To whom much is given, much is expected” and “Win at all costs.” And they do—but at a price.
Across decades and generations, the Kennedys have occupied a unique place in the American imagination: charmed, cursed, at once familiar and unknowable. The House of Kennedy is a revealing, fascinating account of America’s most storied family, as told by America’s most trusted storyteller.
The Will to Win: The Story of Biodun Shobanjo is fundamentally a deliberative evaluation of leadership and enterprise management. It is as much a biographical portrait of Nigeria’s ‘Czar of Advertising’ as it is a story of the major developments in the world of marketing communications in Nigeria as it involves Shobanjo. It sheds light on his persona and gives a comprehensive overview of who he is. It is a lucidly engaging work through which the reader understands his parentage, family life and most poignantly, his professional and business life. In a land with few authentic heroes or achievers, Biodun Shobanjo’s contributions, achievements and place are deservedly presented. The avalanche of information provided, the depth of treatment given to it, and the sources consulted make this work a productive venture. The reader is assured of an excursion in history, career development, ambition, decision – making, entrepreneurship, business management, office politics, people management, success and failure. It is a positive work that is faithful to its theme: the path to success is guided by the will to win.
Meet 50 women and men who broke the rules . . . and changed the world.
What does Charles Darwin have in common with Johannes Gutenberg—or with Jackson Pollock, Martin Luther, Betty Friedan, Steve Jobs, and DJ Kool Herc? They were the disruptors, upending cultural, technical, spiritual, or scientific paradigms and altering the way we live forever. Bestselling author Alan Axelrod presents engaging profiles, accompanied by original line drawings, of 50 visionaries who rewrote the rules. Their innovations range from the printing press (Gutenberg) to the fight for women’s equality (Friedan), from the smartphone (Jobs) to the invention of hip-hop (Herc).
Robert Iger became CEO of The Walt Disney Company in 2005, during a difficult time. Competition was more intense than ever and technology was changing faster than at any time in the company’s history. His vision came down to three clear ideas: Recommit to the concept that quality matters, embrace technology instead of fighting it, and think bigger—think global—and turn Disney into a stronger brand in international markets.
Today, Disney is the largest, most admired media company in the world, counting Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and 21st Century Fox among its properties. Its value is nearly five times what it was when Iger took over, and he is recognized as one of the most innovative and successful CEOs of our era.
In The Ride of a Lifetime, Robert Iger shares the lessons he learned while running Disney and leading its 220,000-plus employees, and he explores the principles that are necessary for true leadership, including:
• Optimism. Even in the face of difficulty, an optimistic leader will find the path toward the best possible outcome and focus on that, rather than give in to pessimism and blaming.
• Courage. Leaders have to be willing to take risks and place big bets. Fear of failure destroys creativity.
• Decisiveness. All decisions, no matter how difficult, can be made on a timely basis. Indecisiveness is both wasteful and destructive to morale.
• Fairness. Treat people decently, with empathy, and be accessible to them.
This book is about the relentless curiosity that has driven Iger for forty-five years, since the day he started as the lowliest studio grunt at ABC. It’s also about thoughtfulness and respect, and a decency-over-dollars approach that has become the bedrock of every project and partnership Iger pursues, from a deep friendship with Steve Jobs in his final years to an abiding love of the Star Wars mythology.