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Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination

Titans of Capital

How Concentrated Wealth Threatens Humanity

by Peter Phillips

Book cover for Titans of Capital
Book cover for Titans of Capital

A fascinating examination of the rapid concentration of global capital, with chapters that focus on China and Russia.

Explores how fewer and larger investment companies now manage the excess financial wealth of the world’s 40 million richest people, to the detriment of everyone else and the global environment.
 

Political sociologist Peter Phillips examines the global economy to demonstrate how networks of wealthy individuals have evolved since the COVID-19 pandemic—and how the financial investments of transnational elites threaten human rights and the future of the planet. Focusing on private capital investments, military spending, and the propaganda machine, he poses three key research questions: 

  • To what extent do the wealthy influence—or even dominate—decision making that affects all of us in society? 
  • Who are the most powerful people? 
  • How does the accumulation of capital work? 

Titans of Capital examines changes in the global economy during the past five years that demonstrate how networks of wealthy individuals have evolved since the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the financial investments of transnational elites threaten human rights and the future of the planet.

  • Private capital investments serve as the primary operating funds for international arms sales, private prisons, and other socially negative activities. These investments fuel the continued use of carbon-based energy leading to amplified global warming and climate change.
  • Military spending is a critical component of continued wealth concentration and political power in the world. Spending on arms and intelligence is a required aspect of maintaining global power and control.  Dealing with Russia, China, Iran and other “rogue” states is a continuing agenda for agents of the world power elites.
  • Propaganda machines in Western capitalist governments serve to protect elite wealth by promoting military conflicts to open new regions for economic investment.


Phillips warns that while continued concentration of global capital increases the profits enjoyed by the global economy’s “Titans,”, it also increases global inequality, starvation, and civil unrest, threatening the lives of the hundreds of millions of people living in extreme poverty. It is imperative to ask how we can reverse the concentration of Titan wealth and revitalize grassroots democracy unbridled by extreme wealth. Identifying 117 global Titans by name and exposing the networks and interests that unite them provides readers opposed to militarism and committed to economic equality with crucial tools to directly engage the power elite who endanger life on earth.

Book cover for Titans of Capital
Book cover for Titans of Capital

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Peter Phillips

Peter Phillips is a Professor of Political Sociology at Sonoma State University since 1994, former Director of Project Censored 1996 to 2010 and President of Media Freedom Foundation 2003 to 2017. He has been editor or co-editor of fourteen editions of Censored, co-editor with Dennis Loo of Impeach the President: The Case Against Bush and Cheney (2006), editor of two editions of Progressive Guide to Alternative Media and Activism (1999 & 2004). His most recent book is Giants: The Global Power Elite. He was a co-host of the weekly Project Censored show on Pacifica Radio with Mickey Huff from 2010 to 2017, originating from KPFA in Berkeley and airing on forty stations nationwide. He teaches courses in Political Sociology, Sociology of Power, Sociological of Media, Sociology of Conspiracies and Investigative Sociology. He was winner of the Firecracker Alternative Book Award in 1997 for Best Political Book, PEN Censorship Award 2008, Dallas Smythe Award from the Union for Democratic Communications 2009, and the Pillar Human Rights Award from the National Associations of Whistleblowers 2014. He lives in a redwood forest near Bodega, California with his wife Mary Lia.

Other books by Peter Phillips