Obvious in Hindsight (Hardcover)
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A tech start-up and their cutthroat consultants will stop at nothing to realize their dream of filling the skies of America’s cities with flying cars…and their opposition is equally determined to bring that dream crashing down.
Dozens of start-up tech companies are forming each week, innovating at a breakneck pace and forcing change overnight, ready or not. In the blisteringly funny Obvious in Hindsight, the new technology in question is flying cars, and they’re coming to a crowded urban area near you. But before that happens, the slick and powerful political consultants campaigning to get the new tech adopted will have to manipulate political operatives to their advantage while overcoming fierce opposition from groups hostile to the idea, from the strategically aligned taxi cab and rideshare companies to the squawking, costumed Audubon Society, the socialists, and the Russian mob.
This story takes readers on a richly imagined, page-turning journey through multiple cities populated by opposing special interest groups, hucksters, and corrupt power brokers. A riveting and ultimately insightful satire that provides an insider’s view of how capitalism, politics, and entrepreneurship intersect, Obvious in Hindsight is a timely novel destined to become one of the most entertaining cautionary tales of the millennium.
About the Author
Bradley Tusk is a venture capitalist, political strategist, philanthropist, and writer.
He is the CEO and co-founder of Tusk Ventures, the world’s first venture capital fund that invests solely in early stage start-ups in highly regulated industries. He is the founder of national political consulting firms Tusk Strategies and Pericles. Tusk Philanthropies is funding and leading the national campaign to bring mobile voting to all US elections.
Bradley is the author of The Fixer: My Adventures Saving Startups From Death by Politics, writes a column for Fast Company, hosts a podcast called Firewall, and is the co-founder of the Gotham Book Prize. He owns a bookstore and podcast studio called P&T Knitwear.
Bradley served as campaign manager for Mike Bloomberg’s 2009 mayoral race, as Deputy Governor of Illinois, as communications director for Senator Chuck Schumer, and as Uber’s first political advisor. He is a graduate of the University of Chicago Law School and the University of Pennsylvania.
“...quirky and erratic riff on the future of flying cars,...Tusk’s satire is at times hilarious and insightful.”
— Publishers Weekly
“If you want to know what politics and tech are really like and you want to laugh, this is your book. Bradley gets it right and makes it fun.”
— Gary Vaynerchuk (commonly known as Gary Vee)
“No one in America is better positioned than Bradley Tusk to write an entertaining and biting satire of what happens when politics collide with government and both collide with the tech industry and its opponents. Obvious in Hindsight pulls the curtain back—enjoy the ride.”
— Mike Bloomberg, Founder and CEO Bloomberg LP, Three-Time Mayor of New York City
“This dazzling comic stew of power, policy, and tech reads like Jonathan Swift trapped inside a pinball machine, but Bradley Tusk keeps piling up authentic human insights alongside the laughs so that the more outrageous it becomes, the more real it feels. It’s a must-read if you live in the actual world with other people.”
— Steven Soderbergh, Filmmaker, Director of Ocean’s Thirteen, Erin Brockovich, Traffic, and Magic Mike
“Bradley Tusk wrote the best kind of book: a rollicking propulsive satire about power so dark that you take assurance in the label of ‘fiction,’ even though, really, you know every page is truer than you could imagine. We don’t yet live in the time of flying cars, but Bradley already looks at the world from a bird’s eye view—revealing exactly who we are with caustic and incisive wit.”
— Brian Koppelman, American Showrunner, Co-Writer of Ocean’s Thirteen and Rounders and Co-Creator of Showtime’s Billions
“The way politics actually works—especially local politics—and the way most people think it works are often two very different things. I don’t know when we’ll actually have to decide whether to legalize flying cars, but Tusk’s take on how it’ll go down is probably right.”
— Reverend Al Sharpton, Civil Rights Leader, Founder, and President of the National Action Network (NAN)
“If good fiction is a reflection of the known world, then Obvious in Hindsight is something even more impressive—a rare glimpse of the world behind that world, where the real power is wielded, the real fortunes amassed. With a Sedaris-like penchant for humor and a Tom Wolfian knowledge of the Zeitgeist, Tusk’s satiric tale of a flying car start-up gone awry is a story only he could tell. But to call it satire isn’t quite right, because time and again its ingenious absurdities skew a little too close to plausible, resulting in something entirely new: a rollicking thriller, a riotous comedy, and a not-so-subtle warning to the complacent among us: it’s time to start paying attention.”
— David Goodwille, Author of Kings County and American Subversive
“A funny, eye-popping novel about what it would take to get flying cars off the ground (literally) and into the skies of, say, New York City. Bradley Tusk pulls back the curtain on tech startups to reveal the money-driven, highly conflicted characters operating behind the scenes: loan sharks and CEOs, FBI agents and venture capitalists, pundits and politicians. Who is pushing innovation, who is slamming on the brakes... and why? A fascinating read!”
— Amy Poeppel, Author of The Sweet Spot, Musical Chairs, Limelight, and Small Admissions
“Obvious in Hindsight is a brilliant, biting political satire that pulls back the curtain on government, politicians, Big Tech, and lobbyists—and reveals just how absurd the system really is. It gets a whole lot funnier—and maybe even a little scary—when you realize Tusk has spent a lifetime around politics. This is like if Schoolhouse Rock actually told the truth about how a bill becomes (or doesn't become) law. If you want to know how the system actually works, read this book.”
— Rob Hart, Author of The Warehouse and The Paradox Hotel
“Obvious in Hindsight gives readers a peek into the world of the political consultants trying to help push the future forward, while managing the often (ahem) strong personalities of their visionary clients. It's fun, fast-paced and entirely believable to anyone in the startup ecosystem.”
— Connie Loizos, Silicon Valley Editor of TechCrunch