The Nation: The Kingdom and its Power

To many of his hired managers, the supremely powerful man whom they never saw was "The Shareholder." As such, Howard Hughes controlled everything through Summa Corp., headquartered in Las Vegas, and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Miami. Occasionally, the corpulent assets of the two organizations bump into each other, revealing the complex relationships. The institute, of which Hughes was sole trustee, owns all of Hughes Aircraft Co., the huge defense contractor (more than $1.4 billion worth last year). Hughes Aircraft, in turn, owns half of Theta Cable, a cable TV system in Los Angeles. The other half is owned by...

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