The Secret World of Oil

The Secret World of Oil

Book - 2014
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"Oil is the lifeblood of modern civilization, and the industry that supplies it has been the subject of intense interest and scrutiny, as well as countless books. And yet, almost no attention has been paid to one aspect of the modern oil industry: the questionable characters--the fixers, gangsters, and dictators--allied with competing governments and multinational corporations. The energy industry, to cite just one measure of corruption, violates the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act more often than any other economic sector, even weapons. This book sets out to tell the story of this hidden world.The global fleet of some 11,000 tankers--which tripled in size during the past decade--moves approximately 2 billion metric tons of oil annually. And every stage in the production process, from discovery to consumption, is tainted by corruption and violence, even if little of that is visible to the public. Based on trips to New York, Washington, Houston, London, Paris, Geneva, Phnom Penh, Dakar, Lagos, Baku, and Moscow, among other far-flung locales, "The Secret World of Oil" includes up-close portraits of a shadowy Baku-based trader; a high-flying London fixer; and an oil dictator's playboy son who has to choose one of his eleven luxury vehicles when he heads out to party in Los Angeles. Supported by funding from the prestigious Open Society, this is both an entertaining global travelogue and a major work of investigative reporting"--
Publisher: London :, Verso,, 2014.
ISBN: 9781781681374
Branch Call Number: 338.27282 SI
Characteristics: 281 pages ; 22 cm

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rpavlacic
Oct 22, 2014

Disturbing look at the movers and shakers who exploit good people out of the oil revenues they deserve, from brutal dictatorships like Equatorial Guinea that executes dissenters by crucifixion, to Louisiana which despite all its natural wealth is consistently the poorest state in America. One of the lobbyists is none other than Tony Blair, a subject which results in an entire chapter looking at his shadowy dealings.

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StarGladiator
May 27, 2014

An excellent book, especially where the oil traders are concerned [an important chapter covering the largest oil trader, Glencore]. Silverstein conveys the pathological psychopathology of the rich by the comments of a developer regarding Sihanoukville, where the original dwellers were forceably moved away from, or killed, to free it up for real estate development.

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