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                                     The Money and the Power:
                                     The Making of Las Vegas and Its Hold on America, 1947-2000
The Money and the Power:
The Making of Las Vegas and Its Hold on America, 1947-2000


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Sally Denton, an award-winning investigative reporter in both print and television, has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Chicago Tribune. She is the author of The Bluegrass Conspiracy: An Inside Story of Power, Greed, Drugs, and Murder. She lives in the Southwest with her husband, who is her coauthor, and her three sons. Roger Morris served on the senior staff of the National Security Council under Presidents Johnson and Nixon, until he resigned over the invasion of Cambodia. He has won several national journalism prizes, including the Investigative Reporters and Editors Award for the finest investigative journalism in all media nationwide. He is the author of several books on history and politics, including Richard Milhous Nixon: The Rise of an American Politician, which was short-listed for both a National Book Award and a National Book Critics Circle award.

The shadowy past and present of Las Vegas--and its role in the shaping of today's America--are here revealed as never before by two of the country's leading investigative reporters. After five years of intensive research and interviewing, Sally Denton and Roger Morris make clear how and why Las Vegas became the greatest "business success story" of the twentieth century, and how the rest of America ensured this success by contributing capital as well as customers.

Headquarters of a trillion-dollar worldwide empire, the site of unprecedented political and economic power, Las Vegas, in the view of Denton and Morris, is by no means an aberrant sin city. They demonstrate how, on the contrary, it has grown out of, and reflects, a corruption and a worship of money that have crept into American life since Prohibition.

They trace the original funds for the founding of the Las Vegas we know today to nationwide narcotics trafficking. They show how deeply a multiethnic criminal syndicate, in part feeding off gambling profits and the skim in Las Vegas, came to influence American politics and the larger society, and how pervasively its "style of business" has penetrated the entire nation.

Denton and Morris detail the amazing rise and reach of Meyer Lansky--the mind that ran the city; exactly how criminals, politicians, and businessmen worked together to control Las Vegas; the curious interplay of the city with the fates of Joseph, John F., and Robert Kennedy; how Howard Hughes and J. Edgar Hoover vastly intensified the city’s corruption; how Mormon bankers and Wall Street financiers have bankrolled and profited from casinos ruled by organized crime; how a handful of dedicated journalists and law enforcement officers were destroyed before they could expose the city’s secrets.

The Money and the Power is a detailed and illuminating chronicle of an extraordinary place and time--
and a provocative reinterpretation of twentieth-century American history.

"What a good book this is. From the pioneering Mormons to the racketeering Mob, this book is a terrific read, an investigative biography and secret history of America's most surreal and wired city. With characters like Bugsy Siegel and Benny Binion, The Money and the Power is proof-positive that Las Vegas is not only stranger than fiction: it's scarier."
--Jim Hougan, author of Secret Agenda:
Watergate, Deep Throat and the CIA