Gary Weiss has uncovered financial wrongdoing for almost a quarter of a century.
AYN RAND NATION (St. Martin's Press: Feb. 28, 2012), his third book, began as an exploration of the roots of the 2008 financial crisis. It soon became apparent that Ayn Rand's teachings were a decisive influence, and that her philosophy has come to pervade the national dialogue over the role of government, deficits, and "entitlements" such as Social Security and Medicare. Her teachings have been adopted in large measure by all of the Republican presidential candidates, have a strong influence on the libertarian movement and Tea Party, and pose a challenge to moderates and conservatives as well as the left.
It is a hidden battle for the soul of America - and Rand is winning.
Weiss was for years an investigative reporter at BusinessWeek magazine, where his award-winning cover story, "The Mob on Wall Street," exposed mob infiltration of the market for small-cap stocks. The article won praise from Louis Freeh, director of the FBI, for paving the way for federal prosecution of mob crimes in the stock market. He uncovered the Salomon Brothers bond-trading scandal, and authored some of the earliest coverage on the dangers posed by hedge funds, Internet fraud and out-of-control leverage.
He was a contributing editor at Conde Nast Porfolio, writing about the people most intimately involved in the financial crisis, from Timothy Geithner to Bernard Madoff. He also writes a regular column for TheStreet.com and is a freelance contributor to many periodicals.
His first book BORN to STEAL (Warner Books: 2003), described the Mafia's takeover of brokerage houses in the 1990s. WALL STREET VERSUS AMERICA (Portfolio: 2006) was a detailed account of investor rip-offs.