Resources for Humans

Hot List: Bestselling Business Books on updates its list of bestselling business books hourly. Here is a snapshot of what books were hot this morning — Monday, December 4.

1. The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism by Naomi Klein. The neo-liberal economic policies—privatization, free trade, slashed social spending—that the Chicago School and the economist Milton Friedman have foisted on the world are catastrophic in two senses, argues this vigorous polemic. Because their results are disastrous—depressions, mass poverty, private corporations looting public wealth, by the author’s accounting—their means must be cataclysmic, dependent on political upheavals and natural disasters as coercive pretexts for free-market reforms the public would normally reject. Journalist Klein (No Logo) chronicles decades of such disasters, including the Chicago School makeovers launched by South American coups; the corrupt sale of Russia’s state economy to oligarchs following the collapse of the Soviet Union; the privatization of New Orleans’s public schools after Katrina; and the seizure of wrecked fishing villages by resort developers after the Asian tsunami.

2. The Conscience of a Liberal by Paul Krugman. Economist and New York Times columnist Krugman’s stimulating manifesto aims to galvanize today’s progressives the way Barry Goldwater’s The Conscience of a Conservative did right-wingers in 1964. Krugman’s theme is economic equality and the liberal politics that support it. Conservative initiatives to cut taxes for the rich, dismantle social programs and demolish unions, he argues, have led to sharply rising inequality, with the incomes of the wealthiest soaring while those of most workers stagnate. Krugman’s accessible, stylishly presented argument deftly combines economic data with social and political analysis; his account of the racial politics driving conservative successes is especially sharp. The result is a compelling historical defense of liberalism and a clarion call for Americans to retake control of their economic destiny.

3. Stop the 401(k) Rip-off!: Eliminate Costly Hidden Fees to Improve Your Life by David B. Loeper. Loeper shows 401k participants (both owners and employees) how to expose the hidden (and often excessive) fees in their 401k plans. Following his guidance should help businesses and individual investors determine the true cost of their 401k, minimize those expenses, make better choices, and get the most out of their retirement accounts.

4. Bo’s Lasting Lessons: The Legendary Coach Teaches the Timeless Fundamentals of Leadership by Bo Schembechler and John U. Bacon. Late, great Michigan Wolverines football coach, Schembechler lets loose his boisterous personality in italicized and capitalized words and spells out the leadership principles by which he lived en route to 13 Big 10 titles and 10 Rose Bowl appearances. The book contains no complicated formulas or M.B.A. treatises, but rather commonsense approaches to everything from setting goals and motivating mid-level employees to emphasizing execution and maintaining focus under fire. Along the way, Schembechler shares details from both his professional and personal lives, in which he’s always prepared for anything. Schembechler’s lessons are practical, well-illustrated and based on a solid legacy of determination and hard work.

5. Think BIG and Kick Ass in Business and Life by Donald J. Trump and Bill Zanker. Zanker started The Learning Annex with $5,000 and grew it into a $5 million a year company. That was before he met Trump. Thirty months later, after Zanker learned to think BIG himself, The Learning Annex is generating over $100 million a year in sales — and still growing. This book shares the strategies that helped both men become business tycoons.