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Butler to the World: How Britain became the servant of tycoons, tax dodgers, kleptocrats and criminals (Paperback)Oliver Bullough (author)
With piercing insight and wit, the bestselling author of former Waterstones Non-Fiction Book of the Month Moneyland delivers an urgent and eye-opening analysis of the UK’s economic history as the financial butler to the world’s oligarchs, kleptocrats, tax dodgers and criminals.
The Suez Crisis of 1956 was Britain's twentieth-century nadir, the moment when the once superpower was bullied into retreat. In the immortal words of former US Secretary of State Dean Acheson, 'Britain has lost an empire and not yet found a role.' But the funny thing was, Britain had already found a role. It even had the costume. The leaders of the world just hadn't noticed it yet.
Butler to the World reveals how the UK took up its position at the elbow of the worst people on Earth: the oligarchs, kleptocrats and gangsters. We pride ourselves on values of fair play and the rule of law, but few countries do more to frustrate global anti-corruption efforts.
We are now a nation of Jeeveses, snobbish enablers for rich halfwits of considerably less charm than Bertie Wooster. It doesn't have to be that way.
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 246 g
Dimensions: 196 x 128 x 26 mm
'Brilliant' - Marina Hyde, The Guardian
'A horribly brilliant account of just how much historical integrity Britain has sacrificed at the altar of dirty money. Bullough is a compelling and expert guide to the newly-dug sewers flowing through the heart of our political, legal and financial establishment' - James O'Brien
'Riveting from cover to cover; a jaw-dropping and damning account that will make you sit up and re-evaluate what you think about the City, the UK and global finance' - Peter Frankopan, author of The Silk Roads
'Urgent and essential reading. From grasping bankers to opportunistic lawyers and feckless MPs, unable and unwilling to withstand the schemes of the global rich, Oliver Bullough has drilled down to the root of the malaise that's rotting the UK system. Beautifully written with quiet despairing humour, this is the defining story of our times' - Catherine Belton, author of Putin's People
'Not only a witty and well researched economic history of Britain's role as financial Butler to the world, this is also a savage analysis of Britain's soul. As essential as Orwell at his best' - Peter Pomerantsev, author of This Is Not Propaganda
'A really engrossing and enraging read' - Ian Rankin
'Terrific ... pulled by a current of Tory indolence, Britain flounders in a sea of dirty money' - Nick Cohen, The Observer
'Razor-sharp' - The Financial Times
'Could a book ever be more timely? ... Highly readable' - The Times
'A terrifyingly good book' - Alastair Campbell
'Shockingly timely ... excellent' - The Mail on Sunday
'Grimly fascinating ... remarkable' - Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times
'Bullough is cynical, and his findings make depressing reading... but he's right that the whole system is built to facilitate the crooks, and takes the rest of us for mugs' - The Spectator
'Uncommonly timely' - The Herald
'Highly readable... deserve[s] praise for going beyond moralising and pointing out how an industry geared to enabling the corrupt is not just unsavoury but can hurt a country's real economic prospects' - Martin Sandbu, The Financial Times
'It is hard to imagine a more timely book ... Butler to the World is both a brilliant and depressing blast at decades of malign financial cosiness and the politicians who let it happen ... It takes guts to write and publish a book like this ... Bullough doesn't sit back and drily condemn all this financial skulduggery, he goes to meet the people who helped create the conditions that allowed it to happen' - Robert Verkaik, The Guardian
'An urgent account of Britain's history of welcoming corrupt capital ... Mr Bullough argues compellingly that though more anti-corruption funds and tougher enforcement are welcome, what is really needed is a change of philosophy: for principles to take precedence over the profits of a few' - The Economist
'Butler to the World's main message - that Britain needs to clean up its act not just for its own good but for that of the world - rings all the louder because of current geopolitics ... it's a damning judgement, but one that Bullough ... is well-positioned to give' - Rory Sullivan, The Independent
'Urgent and deeply reported' - The New Statesman
'Jaw-dropping ... Bullough has a gift for making complex financial information comprehensible and strives to leaven this depressing story with jokes and deft character sketches ... timely' - Charlotte Heathcote, The Daily Mirror
'An essential expose ... the pages reek of dirty money linked to Britain that Bullough has a nose for sniffing out ... impressive, pacy journalism that will leave you flabbergasted' - The Irish Sunday Independent
'If like me you've ever wondered what all those university graduate schemes were ultimately about, Bullough outlines it here... Timely and revealing' - Lucy Prebble, writer and executive producer of Succession
'Anyone who cares about the future of this country should read this sizzlingly written and incendiary story of our national decline. For more than 60 years our financial system has been corroded by greed - and has in turn corrupted our politics. This book blows apart Britain's image for gentlemanly respectability and lays bare the real picture: ruthless greed disguised by hypocrisy, and tolerated because of wilful ignorance' - Edward Lucas, author of The New Cold War: How the Kremlin Menaces Both Russia and the West
'The shocking revelation of how the old heart of an unscrupulous empire turned into a fawning servant to the global super-rich. The sooner more people realise this, the better' - Danny Dorling, author of Rule Britannia
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Firstly this book covers an important and concerning subject and does a good job at highlighting some of the major components on Britain’s weakness on international corruption and money laundering.
“Fantastic work, Jeeves!”
I’ve enjoyed this. Certainly not as much as Moneyland from same author but fantastic nonetheless. Book pretty much just walks people through the development of the process of sheltering dirty money in the west... More
“Scathing and insightful”
Bullough's writing is very witty and eloquent, and so this would have been an enjoyable read were this about some fictitious world and not the one we live in. Alas, the metaphor of 'Butler' to describe... More
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