Gangster Capitalism: The United States and the Global Rise of Organized Crime

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Constable, 2005 - Corporate crime - 260 pages
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We know all about organized crime. Blockbuster movies and books, and thousands of news stories continually tell an eager public that organized crime is what gangsters do. Closely knit, ethnically distinct, and ruthlessly efficient, these mafias control the drugs trade, people trafficking and other serious crimes. If only states would take the threat seriously and recognize the global nature of modern organized crime, the FBI's success against the New York mafias could be replicated throughout the world. The wicked trade in addictive drugs could be halted.

The trouble is, as Michael Woodiwiss demonstrates in shocking and surprising detail, what everyone knows is pretty much completely wrong. Organized crime is dominated by employees of multinational companies, politicians and bureaucrats. Gangsters are a problem, but they are minor players when compared with the intelligence and law enforcement agencies that selectively enforce drugs prohibition and profit from it. The position of large corporations in the global economy provides the most mouth-watering opportunities for illegal profits.

Woodiwiss shows how respectable businessmen and revered statesmen have seized these opportunities in an orgy of fraud and illegal violence that would leave the most hardened Mafioso speechless with admiration.

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The United States and Gangster Capitalism
Cradle to Crematorium Womb to Cadaver Lab
Barons Crusaders and the Land of Criminal Opportunity

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About the author (2005)

Michael Woodiwiss lectures on American history at the University of the West of England. His previous books include Crimes, Crusades and Corruption: Prohibitions in the United States, 1900-1987 and Organised Crime and American Power: A History.

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