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Unprecedented Power: Jesse Jones, Capitalism, and the Common Good Hardcover – September 1, 2011
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About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
The person I am speaking about is Jessie Jones. He had as much influence on what we know today as Houston as any person in its history. Although he lived during an era of deep segregation all evidence seemed to indicate he respected all people. He gave generously to orphanages' both black and white. He played a significant role in providing scholarships at Prairie View A. & M. University. He served on the Board of Trustees at Tuskegee Institute. He also provided scholarships that helped to establish the nationally recognized Prairie View A. & M. University College of Nursing.
I recommend you get this book. It not only provides background on what Houston was like during that era but also the role he played during this very critical time in American history.
Mr. Fenberg reveals how an entrepreneur, multimillionaire, landlord and Democrat left his business empire in answer to the call of duty of his country in its darkest hour to serve both as President Hoover's and FDR's head of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. It also is a tribute to public service over greed and pragmatism over ideology. Mr. Jones wrote his own tribute when he endorsed President Roosevelt at the 1936 Democratic National Convention:
"I am not one who favors government in business but when business runs amuck, and private credit is no longer available, the government must step in. I have seen so much distress, so much tragedy, so many broken men in the four years I have been doing relief work for the business of our country that I want no more of it. Lifting a hundred [and] twenty-five million people out of the depths of despair and degradation in which they found themselves by March 1933, bringing them to a state of comparative comfort and happiness in the period of three short years, is an accomplishment that none of us thought possible, and one for which the entire nation owes a lasting debt of gratitude..."
The book unveils how little the politics of power has changed between our times and Jones'. How politicians can chose power over public service, politics over the greater good, how man is condemned to the same errors under the same conditions when ideology and influence trump reason and humanism.
A very worthwhile read for our times.
This fact was most openly verified by the pair of 24^ solid gold cufflinks created by Sweeney's Jewelers, each in the form of a one inch ruler with "$1000" engraved on their face, and displayed for weeks in Sweeney's store window – located street-level in the City National Bank building directly across from the property at Main & McKinney -- with the story calligraphied upon a small show-card for all the world to see.
Until this read, the facts of the foregone described property sale & cufflink episode and his Federal Reserve Board participation at one time were my only real knowledge of the man, albeit: Given the biographer was true to a completely expository faith, within his work; I find the man, Jessie H. Jones to be an excellent example of the true, equitably charitable American entrepreneurial spirit – particularly, Texan in nature – which fits my now, 79-year/old recall of just what made this country worthy of my 30-month military/paramilitary combat-time investment, against the real prospect I & my posterity too MAY be able to achieve such success
Alas: How far from that spirit, we have fallen as a nation can only be measured by the conversions, of those Jessie H. Jones’ who might have come of our history, into these academia spawned, megalomaniacal power leaches by whom we are being immersed into this diabolical cesspool of dissipation today. ...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It taught me a lot about a man who was a shadowy figure until then to me. I came to respect him more than I had and Roosevelt a little less.Published 14 months ago by Keith C. Jones
A well written Documentary on the Men who made Houston and Texas great!Published 19 months ago by beverlyrudy
It's a book, and all the pages were in the correct order. Tough to go wrong.Published 19 months ago by blden
Intriguing story of how Jesse Jones acquired power at an early age working for his father and then how he shaped the fourth largest city in the United States. Read morePublished on March 25, 2014 by Texas native
I grew up in Houston but never knew the story of how Jesse Jones represented the founding force of Houston's commercial success. Read morePublished on November 16, 2013 by RustyK
I was uncomfortable once I realized it was a library book. It's too new to b e a FORMER library book so I fear it was not taken from the library under ethical conditions. Read morePublished on May 23, 2013 by Sarah McMullen
I purchased this book for a couple I am friends with. They had talked about wanting to read this book for awhile so when the opportunity arose I gifted them with this. Read morePublished on January 4, 2013 by Mary Beth
A very well written book. It tells in detail the creativeness of an outstanding leader in American politics and business of his time.Published on December 4, 2012 by Marilyn Caplovitz