31 episodes

Big Business is shaping the world in unprecedented ways. Through a series of conversations with today’s best business writers and thinkers, journalist Bethany McLean (co-author of The Smartest Guys in the Room) cuts through the hype and hand-wringing to reframe the stories you thought you understood and uncover the ones you didn’t know were important.

Making a Killing with Bethany McLean Bethany McLean

    • Business
    • 4.8 • 22 Ratings

Big Business is shaping the world in unprecedented ways. Through a series of conversations with today’s best business writers and thinkers, journalist Bethany McLean (co-author of The Smartest Guys in the Room) cuts through the hype and hand-wringing to reframe the stories you thought you understood and uncover the ones you didn’t know were important.

    Going, going, Ghosn - with Joe Nocera

    Going, going, Ghosn - with Joe Nocera

    In the Season One finale of Making A Killing, Bethany brings back her friend, colleague and co-author Joe Nocera (Bloomberg Opinion columnist and creator of The Shrink Next Door podcast) to bookend the season with a lively analysis of the former head of Nissan Motor Co. and Renault S.A., Carlos Ghosn... sure to go down in history as one of the wildest business stories ever. Time and time again we learn that in business, truth is always stranger than fiction.  
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    • 39 min
    Malcolm Harris on "Keynes Was Wrong. Gen Z Will Have It Worse."

    Malcolm Harris on "Keynes Was Wrong. Gen Z Will Have It Worse."

    John Maynard Keynes, the founder of macroeconomics, thought he knew what his grandchildren would be facing today. He imagined that capitalism would be almost over by now, having simply been a means to greater ends. About other things he was right; about capitalism being over, he was very, very wrong. Today's guest, Malcolm Harris -- editor of The New Inquiry and author of the book Shit is F****d Up And B******t: History Since The End of History -- believes today's kids will have it even worse. Bethany and Malcolm have a Gen-X-meets-Gen-Y conversation about our future economy. 
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    • 37 min
    Liam Denning on the Price of Oil

    Liam Denning on the Price of Oil

    The inconvenient truth of oil is that it is still the lifeblood of industrialized nations -- and the price, politics and pollution of it matters. A lot. But one of the funny things about oil is how everyone who dares to make predictions has one thing in common: They’re wrong. In this episode, Bethany talks with Liam Denning, a well-known Bloomberg opinion columnist covering energy, mining and commodities.
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    • 45 min
    Kirsten Korosec on the Rocky Road for Self-Driving Cars

    Kirsten Korosec on the Rocky Road for Self-Driving Cars

    Autonomous vehicles, or self-driving cars, are often painted as a utopian-like technology that will save time (no traffic), save lives (no crashes), save money (billions!), and maybe even save the Earth (no emissions). But, as TechCrunch's Kirsten Korosec notes in her recent piece, “Who Will Own the Future of Transportation?” even if autonomous vehicles are eventually deployed en masse, the road to that future promises to be long, chaotic and complex. In this fascinating episode, Bethany and Kirsten discuss the difference between describing a grand vision, and soberly understanding the real costs and deep impact incurred by the execution of said vision. 
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    • 39 min
    Chris McCann on Cryptocurrency in the Real World

    Chris McCann on Cryptocurrency in the Real World

    Cryptocurrencies are still in their infancy, as it seems most people agree, but it also feels like we’ve reached a tipping point. Even in Crypto Winters when Bitcoin prices crash, undeniably formative companies and global leaders (Starbucks, Microsoft, Visa, Facebook, the entire nation of China!) continue to make significant bets on the space. As we move from a speculative era into today, driven by more and more people investing time and money into the Bitcoin ecosystem, how do we know that digital assets will find a regular, scalable place in the world? What happens if crypto totally upends the “real” (is that fair to say?) financial markets? Are we in danger of that? What happens if there is a recession in the U.S. again - does Bitcoin become more attractive as an alternative to a centralized federal money system? And what is money, anyway? Bethany's guest Chris McCann, partner at Proof of Capital, chats about all this and more. 
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    • 40 min
    Paul Tough on How College Makes Us or Breaks Us

    Paul Tough on How College Makes Us or Breaks Us

    If there’s a defining feature of upper income life for people with children, it’s school stress. How do you get your kids into the right preschool so they can get into the right high school so they can go to the best college? Paul Tough’s new book THE YEARS THAT MATTER MOST: How College Makes or Breaks Us, reveals why college, which is supposed to be the great equalizer, has become something that depends on and reinforces class and privilege. This is a huge deal for the business world. If we’re losing access to talent, we’re losing more than words can say. It also, of course, is a huge deal for our society. It’s not too grandiose to say that education determines the shape of the society in which we live. So…what shape is that?
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    • 43 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
22 Ratings

22 Ratings

Ahimsa2013 ,

Loved it

I listened to all episodes and loved it! Incredibly informative. I hope there’s more to come!

derekvitu ,

Yes!

This show was the only reason I paid for Luminary. When it disappeared off the platform, I panicked, but seeing it available on other platforms other than Luminary makes me whole again. Can’t wait to see what season two brings! Keep serving the great content, Beth!

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