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The Power Broker

Comments and mentions from HN threads:

Ask HN: Book Recommendations?

euroclydon: Caro, a Pulitzer winning journalist, is a wiz at writing, so you'll enjoy each page. But more importantly, even though Robert Moses was a bad buy, you don't have to be bad to learn to get what you want, in an organization, by ignoring superficial power structures, and focusing on the real ones.

Ask HN: Non-tech books that have helped you grow professionally?

ktamura: At first glance, it's a 1,000-page, detailed biography of a (in)famously effective city planner Robert Moses. At its core, it's a lucid examination of the anatomy of power. It has completely changed how I think about power, where it comes from (whether it's at work or in the greater market/world) and how it is retained and lost.

Ask HN: Which non-technology book has influenced you the most and why?

Spooky23: Nobody has ever captured the nature of power on an individual level to the depth and breadth that Caro did on this book. (except perhaps his epic treatment of Lyndon Johnson) This is probably the best biography ever written. It may take you six months to read, but its time well spent.

Ask HN: What books have made the biggest impact on your mental models?

schlagetown: Unbeatably rich and compelling look at how power and politics actually work, for better (power gets things done) and for worse (power blinds and corrupts)

Mentions by: mmmpop

Ask HN: Books you read in 2018?

goo: I listened to this via audiobook and I highly recommend the experience. It's a large dose of history and a fascinating exploration of city politics and, as its name implies, power. And I learned a lot about New York!

Ask HN: What books changed the way you think about almost everything?

jaxbot: I picked it up out of urban interests, but it gets into so much more of how our political system has been shaped over the last 100 years, and it's scary (or reassuring?) how little it has changed. But also all the insane things Moses did to reshape how cities were built in the USA and how hard it will be to fix his urban sprawl motivation.

RoboTeddy: ostensibly a biography, but it's actually about how power works. The protagonist starts out employing idealistic methods, but falls flat on his face, and comes to delight in any means of achievement. I found that once I understood the protagonist's raw goal-seeking, and the dynamics that emerge from it, I started to recognize similar dynamics at many levels of society and government. Barack Obama read it at 22 and said it was mesmerizing and that it shaped how he thinks about politics.

Mentions by: BentFranklin : bgroat

Ask HN: Recommend one book I need to read this summer?

agotterer: It’s the story about the rise and fall of Robert Moses. His accumulation of power and how he basically built modern New York and his impact on the 20th century.