Saturday, October 29, 2016

Postblogging Technology, September 1946, II: Progress Comes in Waves

R_. C_.,

Dear Father:

I  hope this letter finds you not atomically-blasted to flinders, as appears to be our imminent fate due to the ever-advancing spectre of atomic-bomb wielding communists. (Imagine how much more menacing they will be when they actually have atom bombs. Or jets. Or radar. Or their own trucks and battleships. Or an idea that we are on our way to reading their codes. . . )

So it turns out, as you suggested, that young Reggie has not actually sat "mid terms." I am ashamed to admit that I didn't know that these still await him, deep in the glories of a New England fall. I would know, if my Father weren't too old fashioned to send me off to college. (Pout.) I don't know how much I would learn in a school that would lower itself to admitting the Soong girls, but I am certain that I would look ravishing in a raccoon coat. Collegiates do still wear raccoon coats, don't they? 

Miss "V.C." disabused me of my confusion when we picked her up at the junior college on our way to San Francisco for a joint hairdo at a place of proven results and discretion that I thought she might like to know about.  (Though my favour is limited. It was she who passed the news on in the first place, and I shall place all the blame on her for forgetting to make all clear!)

I say "our" with the greatest of pleasure, as at last I have my James, forever with me. The Admiralty has written to confirm that he will be listed as retiring at his own request with the rank of Rear Admiral (E) in the New Years Honours, which, is, of course, not news but is still a weight off. His recall for Bikini tests was an awful surprise given my recent illness. 

While in the city, we also called upon "Mrs. C.," glorying herself in motherhood. Young "Miss K." stayed for dinner, as we brought potluck to a busy household. She is enjoying babysitting, and shares breathless tales of the adventure of taking bus and cable car from her parents' place all the way to the Wongs, proof reading  "Mr. V.'s" (to give him a name) latest  manuscript as she goes. He has taken quite an apocalyptic tone in his latest, I'm told. Haven't we all? "Miss K." likes the writing, but finds it all a bit depressing in her youthful optimism. (I can imagine you looking at me with that stare, as she is, after all, only eleven years younger than I am. But it is a world of difference, nonetheless."You don't see many White people babysitting in that neighbourhood," "Miss K." observes. True. 


For some reason, not all scientific progress gets the same amount of attention in the scientific press. Image source.  As for pursuing the history of the postwar permanent wave in more detail, I'm at a loss. 

Time, 16 September 1946

This week’s cover man is General Tito, with the caption, “Fanaticism knows no frontier.” (Later, the paper also implies that he is just a Russian puppet. But a fanatical one!
Marshal Tito, looking gangster. This is a truncated version of a photo from the Marxist Internet Archive, because Wikipedia is being cranky about downloading it.


Ira Hirshfield, of Stamford, Connecticut, writes to correct the paper about all Jews wanting to “return” to Palestine. ON the contrary, American Jews are fine where they are, in a land of religious tolerance where all religions are accepted. Including Judaism and other religions that aren't American Protestantism, like, you know, Judaism. They just want the DPs of Europe to go to Palestine. H. Bienen, of Holland, writes that American lynch mobs could benefit from five years of Nazi occupation to teach them something about how democracy actually works. Metta La Mirette, of Shreveport, thinks so, too. J. F. Goux, of Los Angeles, writes to clarify the divorce settlement between Madame Walska and Mr. Bernard, who is a awful. Henry Malcolm, of Peoria, writes in defence of bobby soxers against Anita Loos. Piero P. Foa, M.D., of the University of Chicago medical school, is upset at anti-vivisectionists for holding back science. Richard D. Miller, formerly storekeeper aboard USS Chicago, writes in defence of Captain Bode of that ship, much at odds with your own opinions so strongly expressed last Boxing Day.

Theo Bernard does seem to  have been a bit of a piece of work, but I notice that he is at least the second generation of his family   in the "White Lama" racket, inheriting the business of Pierre Bernard, also known as "Oom the Magnificent," who founded a chain of "trantric clubs" around the United States in the Jazz Age. Nor are the Bernards the only people who edit the past. This is the Key Gompa Monastery in the Spiti Valley of Himchal Pradesh State, but it may not be the "Ki Monastery" that Theo Bernard was supposedly looking for. That would be the "Kye Gompa" founded by Dromton, a practitioner of the Kadam school. Under unclear circumstances, the old Kadam Gye Gompa was replaced by this one, a Gelugpa monastery associated with the Dalai lamas. And by "unclear" I mean that the Great Fifth sent a Mongol army over the pass to liquidate the Kadam monks with extreme prejudice. Ecclesiastical politics, everyone!

National Affairs

“Mirage” The paper thinks that the good times of the last year might be all a mirage, now that the stock market has broken, new strikes have broken out, and prices keep rising. Also, we are “still at war with Germany” until we settle with Russia. Well, I mean, technically, I suppose. . .

“Tar Baby” The President is BUNGLING being President. Also, the paper really liked Song of the South.

“Song of the Americans” There are a lot of strikes going on, and the shipping strike is the worst. The War Shipping Administration is BUNGLING.

“Brakes on the Big Town” True to form, the strike that bothers the paper most is the one that actually affects it: the truckers’ strike that might starve New York City –or at least deprive it of newspapers, cigarettes and soap.

“Words Without Music” The paper hates Westbrook Pegler and Caesar Petrillo, and chortles gleefully when they seem to agree on the benefits of the current strike against 50 New York hotels. (Pegler doesn’t like strikes, or unions in general, but doesn’t like music, either. At least he has his politics to keep him warm at night.)

“Journey to Stuttgart” John Byrnes’ speech has got quite enough coverage already, you’d think, but the paper hasn’t given its view, yet. Which is not that white supremacists know their own; but rather that Germany won’t cease to exist, so we have to do something about it. Which is fair, I guess.

“Win the Peace for Whom?” General Evans Carlson, of the Marine Raiders, is some kind of communist, just like Paul Robeson. The paper can tell because he wants America to drop support for the Koumintang, just like all the other communists.
"He may be red, but he's not yellow!" People in 1946 clearly didn't understand how double entendres worked.

“Thoroughly Pleasant” Argentina’s new ambassador called on the President, who is not BUNGLING Argentina now that he has given up on that anti-Peronist nonsense and moved on to wooing “anti-communist” Argentina in anticipation of the Russian-American war that isn’t inevitable at all, and will be the Russians’ fault if it does happen, and what’s keeping it?

“Get a Trailer” Speaking at the Denver conference of the National Association of Housing Officers, a well-informed official said that the housing crisis probably won’t break until the middle of 1948.

“The Old and the Slow” Several famous people spoke to the national convention of Student Federalists at the University of Chicago. Mortimer Adler said that it was futile to dream of a world government until after the next war, or maybe the one after that.  Beardsley Ruml says that the moral and physical basis of world government does not yet exist. The young people disagree, and think we can have one if we really want.

“When We WereVery Young” Following up on the 1939 story, this week Eileen Herrick Lowther sued George Lowther III for divorce.

Under political notes, the paper notes that Ed Crump thinks that the GOP will win the presidential election in 1948, and there is apparently a gubernatorial election going on in New York; and A. Willis Robertson has been selected as the Democratic candidate for the Virginia senate seat.

“Unthinkable Crime” Under the influence of “war madness,” Japanese officers in the Bonins committed unspeakable crimes against American prisoners of war, reports Arthur Savory, grandson of the Nathaniel Savory who colonised the islands in 1830.
So per the official history, Chichijima, an island of 24 square kilometres, 240km northwest of Iwo Jima, capital of the Bonin Islands, was colonised by a Hawaiian expedition in 1830. The expedition was led by Matteo Mazzaro ("of Italian-British descent"), but Savory became its second leader. This was 23 years before Perry, just to underline the point.  

“Boston Tea Party” The 1946 convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars featured parades, mobs, riots, and votes against immigration and communists. The next head of the VFW is an Oregonian, Louis E. Starr[*]. 

“So Long, Charlie” The cancellation of Test Charlie at Bikini is announced.

Cover Story: Tito is terrible.

Foreign News

The paper quotes the London Gazette on the subject of a Palace reception for “Mr. William Batt, chairman of the United States Steering Committee for the Unification of Screw Threads,” because it is hilarious that anyone would care about such things. Hilariously Turkish is the mysterious disappearance of hairs of the Prophet, stored in sacred bags in certain mosquesand shown to the faithful during Ramadan.

“The Politics of Squatting” English Communists are suspected of trying to lead the squatters’ movement. Also hilariously English, the “Snail Watching Society.
If someone is putting the Luce organisation on, I approve.

The Japanese are a strange people. The Chinese are a bit odd, too, but the Japanese are definitely odder.
I'm sure that these stories are only adjacent by accident, but the impression is still unfortunate.

“Massive Decision” Should America throw its full support behind Chiang, “or permit China (with its nearly 500 million people and vast resources) to become, directly or indirectly, a Soviet satellite”? Can you believe that Secretary Wallace supports the last option? That’s because he’s communist. General Marshall hasn’t made up his mind, yet, though. Don’t be a communist, George! Oh, by the way, if we do let the Russians take over China, America will have to retreat “to the line of the Marianna Islands.” That’s not really a line, is it? More like some points? Also in China, Chiang’s victorious armies are conquering everywhere.

Especially excitable Latins this week include Venezuelan cowboys and the possible next president of Chile, who is almost a communist.
The issue is that Venezuela's cowboys are being hired away to work in the oil fields. As we now know, the trend was irreversible, so good news, everyone!

Canadians like Lester Pearson and Hume Wrong are not communists, but rather “as close to aristocrats as Canada is capable of producing.” That makes them boring, not like fourteen veterans’ families which have squatted a disused army base, just like in England.

“Iron Broom” The Communists are also taking over Bulgaria.


“End of an Era” The end of the “third longest bull market of the century” is huge news. The paper’s coverage of possible causes has at least the virtue of being more comprehensible than The Economist’s. They are: Walter Winchell suggesting that WWIII is just around the corner; disappointing profits; the need for a recession to “realign” the economy by bringing down commodity prices and “stepping up labour efficiency;” or the coming of the Maitreya.
The coming of the Maitreya isn't one of your more apocalyptic apocalypses, but this kind of sculpture is sometimes justified on the grounds that only it will survive the tribulations fo the end times.

“GM Speaks Up” GM issued a report to its shareholders in which it laid out all of the reasons for needing to raise the price of cars by $100 on all models, if the OPA allows. The main reason is that the administration is BUNGLING. Although strikes and a shortage of things like lead for batteries certainly isn’t helping.

“Will it Mind the Baby?” Advertising of the new Reynolds pens is perhaps a bit exaggerated, and the paper is amused that the board is setting aside $110,000 against its money-back guarantee, with the proviso that it has no idea how much the liability will really be, as the situation is “unprecedented.”

“Money Maestro” The paper profiles Horace Heidt, who seems to have given up on music to be a full-time con-man.
Actually, he's launching a talent-search show, which is kind of a legitimate occupation. Here's his first winner, the incomparable Dick Contino, King of the Accordion!

“Bare Table” A meat packer in Philadelphia is temporarily closing its plants while Armour goes on half-shifts, because the OPA wis BUNGLING meat.

“The Bigger They Come” SS America and SS Normandie are both white elephants, unlike British liners. Why, one might almost draw a conclusion!

“Utilities” I.T.T’s Sosthenes Behn has an uncanny gift for sustaining the value of the company’s overseas subsidiaries against various swarthy foreigners.

“Losses in the Air” Among the U.S firms not making money are the airlines, in spite of carrying more passengers.

Science, Technology, Education, Medicine

“Peacetime Fission” In the paper’s version of the Baruch report, atomic power for peaceful purposes “looks closer,  but not that close.” A 75,000 kilowatt pile of the Hanford type would take $25 million to build, and would only be profitable if coal prices rose above $10/ton; and there is also the problem of the deadly rays produced by the pile and its waste. However, the paper points out, the Hanford-type pile is already effectively obsolete for anything except making plutonium.

“Little Pigs at Bikini” The 20 pigs that were exposed below decks of the warships targeted at Bikini have all died of “radiation sickness,” and the cadavers are being studied. (In contrast, “only” 126 of the 200 white rats exposed in the Baker test have died.)

“Scientific Cupid” Dr. Thomas Hume Bissonette, of Yale, has discovered that the mating cycles of many animals can be controlled by exposing them to artificial lights and altering the lengths of their days and nights. Temperature had nothing to do with it.

“Flyless Mountain” The concern with DDT is that indiscriminate application will upset the balance of nature, so it is good news that a naturalist, by carefully applying selected amounts of DDT to various locations around New York’s Bear Mountain resort, was able to completely suppress its flies last summer. DPE, a relative of DDT, has proven effective against mosquitoes, and the Navy has released its insect repellent #448 to the public. 

“Non-Starters” The teachers of Norwalk, Connecticut, are on strike for higher wages, with an eye to the national shortage of 125,000 teachers.

“The Webbs of Bell Buckle” The Webb prep school of Bell Buckle, Tennessee, is the best prep school in Tennessee, says Vanderbilt University.

In really unrelated news, Russian communists are terrible.

“Diphtheria Up” America is facing an upsurge in diphtheria, probably due to declining immunisation rates.

“Ambulatory Cases” Add to the recently profiled Betsey Barton, the case of David Hall to the list of spinal cord damage victims who have made remarkable recoveries thanks to physical rehabilitation. Hall was crippled by invasive osteomyelitis, so I am not sure just how many lessons his case has for veterans, but he certainly looks to be recovering well thanks to the work of Manhattan’s Institute for the Crippled and Disabled.
Left paraplegic by a bone infection. 

“Jaundice Water” Army doctors have made progress in the treatment of infectious hepatitis, which sometimes, but not always, leads to jaundice. They have discovered a waterborne virus, which can be eliminated by “superchlorination.”

“Streptomycin Wonders” In comparison with all the tedious politics and communist-hunting comes more evidence that streptomycin might be an effective treatment for tuberculosis!  (It is also effective against tularemia and peritonitis, and some cases of pneumonia.) 

People, etc. In British Columbia, Dominion apiarist C. B. Gooderham, investigating the matter of the stingless honey bees of the Squamish Valley, was stung by one of the putative mutants.
This is the Squamish Valley, but I'm pretty sure that the original story referred to the even more isolated, adjacent Pemberton Valley.

Miss America 1946 is Marilyn Buford, who has remarkable measurements, but is very silly. Edmund Wilson, fresh of the banning of his book, Memoirs of Hecate County, in all civilised places, is being sued for divorce on grounds of cruelty by his third wife, “gypsy left wing authoress Mary McCarthy,” on grounds of cruelty. Nancy Bruff, “authoress” of The Manatee, promises “another aby and another book” by this time next year. Bishop Manning, Admiral Mitscher, General Somoza, and Senator Bilbo are all convalescing after operations at one  hospital or another around the country, or, in Mitscher’s case, Malta. It is reported that Princess Elizabeth will marry Prince Philip of Greece, a nephew of Admiral Mountbatten.

 In “an isolated Colorado canyon,” it is reported that 75 followers of “Archbishop” Doreal’s Denver Order of the White Temple are working frantically to build an “atomic foxhole” consisting of power plant, roads, houses, workshops and administrative buildings ahead of the imminent atomic war. Glad to hear that someone is making preparations!
The Colorado archives refer to this as "Hidden City, west of Sedalia." It seems to depend heavily on the arcane powers of the Brotherhood of the White Temple for its atom bomb-proofness.. At least they were trying!

Christopher LaFarge and Cornelius Vanderbilt have married, while unjustly-convicted Bertram Campbell has died.

Radio, Art

ABC has signed Henry Morgan to take on Fred Allen and the rest of NBC’s comedy line up. The paper reports on a viewing of Japanese war art in Tokyo that was restricted to Americans only. In press news, the world’s journalists are crammed into far too little space in Nuremberg covering less news than there are reporters to cover it. As a result, they have begun pecking each other through the bars.

The New Pictures

I’ve Always Loved You is a pretentious soap opera, and the paper hated it. Crack-Up is an “easy lesson in psychology,” and the paper didn’t like it, either. But it does think that Claire Trevor is pretty, and had lots of nice new hairdos. Home Sweet Homicide is a predictable mystery-comedy, but the child actors do well with well-written roles.


All the smart people are back from vacation doing smart things instead of reading, so it is time for books like The Miracle of the Bells, described by the paper as “one of the worst ever written.” Speaking of smart people being back, someone named Henry James was a very smart American who went away and then came back, and wrote a book about it, and although that was a long time ago, smart people’s books have a way of reappearing, weighed down with an extra-dollop of introduction, and so here. This was shortly after the Civil War, perhaps, and that was a very important thing for Americans, which is why Rudolph von Abele spent years of his life writing a biography of the Confederacy’s Vice-President, Alexander H. Stephens, who was about as important and interesting as you would expect. And George R. Stewart, a Professor of English at the University of California, has written Man: An Autobiography. The paper summarises the idea as “RemodelledApe.”
For all its white supremacist ideology, it's a credit to the Confederacy that it had a Zombie-American fas a Vice-President.

Flight, 19 September 1946


“The Position is Dangerous” Lord Tedder has given a statement to the press saying that the RAF is dangerously undermanned. At least the paper doesn’t get as fatuous as The Economist: what is needed is improved terms of service.

“A Magnificent Effort” The paper is pleased that the High Speed Flight made 616mph, that a Lancastrian has flown with two Nenes under the wing, and that there were lots of nice things on show at Radlett at a time “when the world is crying out for aeronautical supplies of every conceivable sort.” The paper also complains that some unnamed people are much too modest about the scale of British aeronautical achievements, and they are hurting sales.
This is impressive, although the engines in this 1954 picture  are Sapphires, not Nenes. By RuthAS - Own work, CC BY 3.0,

“Exhibitors Unfairly Treated” On the other hand, the exhibit was badly scheduled, so that the Hall only drew visitors on a single day.

“Research Aircraft: Raising the Mach Number: Tailless and Tail-first Designs: Variable Incidence” The Armstrong-Whitworth AW 52G, Handley-Page Manx, and D.H. 108 still exist. The Miles M. 52 still doesn’t, although it is still worth an extensive description. It is (would be) 33ft long and has a span of 27ft, has the thinnest wing ever attempted, and dive-recovery flaps, only a foot long and three inches deep. The pilot’s pressurised cabin is jettisonable. Touch down speed is 170mph, and a two-mile run is required before stopping. The wing has been tried out on the Miles Falcon. Also still existing are the Libellula and Supermarine 322, and the Vickers rockets intended to replace the M. 52.

The thing with the M. 52 is that it was supposed to be powered by an afterburning version of a British Turbojets engine. No more British Turbojets means no more engine, and no-one wants to say anything rude about Frank Whittle, who is really not himself these days, and there you go. This is the M. 52 engine stuck on a Falcon, if you were wondering. 

Here and There

There will be more “Britain Can Make It” style displays. The Spitfire Memorial Fund has established two scholarships in aeronautical engineering at the University College, Southampton, and more will follow. The story about ex-Servicemen buying planes and using them to emigrate to the dominions where there is no rationing, is so good that the paper repeats it.   
I don't know why these stories of ex-RAF men flying small planes down through Africa to the refuge of South Africa remind me of British "cozy apocalypses" of the 1950s, but here's a cover illustration from an edition of Wyndham's Chrysalids (1955). for a distinctly non-cozy apocalypse, there's a reference to Geroge R. Stewart's 1951 Earth Abides hidden in here somewhere. 

“The F.A.I. in London: First Post-war General Conference Attended by Delegates from 18 National Aero Clubs”

“Seventh SBAC Display: Radlett Exhibition Outclasses All Previous Shows: Guests Impressed by British Genius” But not modesty. As world famous for modesty as England and the English are, in this case one has to dispense with it, as modesty is bad for sales. This is an enormously long article with many photographs, but as far as I can tell, the only things not mentioned last week are the Nene-Lancastrian and an enormous oval frame from the still-building Saro Princess. Although not new, the Bristol Brigand was there, in connection with a series of exhibits showing just how many stores and how much the Mosquito and Brigand can carry into battle. How much battling do we need, these days? We’ve already had six years’ worth!

“R.Ae.S Garden Party” The weather cleared up, and people with airminded connections put on their best and headed down to a turf airfield to be photographed for as long as they could stand what looks like a pretty crisp, albeit “brilliant” day.
I don't seem to have anything from that particular garden party, so let's have a weird, weird liquor ad, instead. 

Civil Aviation News

PICAO is visting some RAF stations for demonstrations, which, unlike Latin American demonstations, will probably consist of staring at radar cathode ray oscilloscopes and pretending to see the difference between planes and static. Rumours that the BEAC is to have two flying workshops built in Bristol Freighters are denied. The North Atlantic Conference of the IATA has requested cancellation charges on air tickets. KLM has christened its first Constellation City of Arnhem, which the paper thinks is  a nice gesture, though not as nice as buying two or three Yorks instead. The Dominion Pacific air agreement has been signed. All the people who might want to fly from Canada to New Zealand, now can.

This blog has a firm policy of making fun of Australia, because they deserve it, Canada, because self-deprecation, and New Zealand, because there's no-one to take offence. 

Indian National Airways is surveying a Burma service to Rangoon.

“Air Traffic Control: The Demonstrations at Bassingbourn: Two Suggested Control Schemes: Individual Navigational Aids Described” PICAO saw two systems demonstrated at Bassingbourne. The first, the controlled approach system, which is based on GEE, consists of incoming aircraft being “controlled” from the ground from a point 50 miles from the airport down to the “gate” chosen for them by the airport controllers. It requires that the aircraft carry a REBECCA receiver/transmitter. The second is the RAF Poor Visibility Landing System, and has the advantage that it can be used at any airfield. Mobile equipment includes a radar van and a Eureka beacon, which an aircraft can pick up with a REBECCA receiver.  Also shown was GCA, or Ground Controlled Approach, in which the aircraft only requires a radio and all the radar is on the ground; the CONSOL system, which is long-range only, and the automatic radio compass, which I guess is lighter and cheaper than the specialised receiver/transmitters, but not accurate enough for ground-controlled approaches.

“Flying Track Control: New Development of the Decca Navigator System: Flight Control Up to Landing Approach” The new Decca Track Control Unit, invented by R. Calvert, technical director of the Wayne-Kerr Laboratories, New Malden, shows the track of the aircraft, recorded on an inserted piece of film. This allows ground controllers to directd large numbers of aircraft on a given track, or divert them to other tracks.


Several correspondents reminisce about the war. B. E. J. Garmeson thinks that the Air Force’s recruiting problem is that it is not as generous as the Army. F. R. Banks writes to defend the compounding piston engine as a near-term solution to long range flying. Stephen Watts wants to reform the Civil Air Guard, and “Brown Job” thinks that “specialised [close-support] types” are needed, because the American XA-51 is all rattattat, boom, zoom. Sqdn Ldr A. H. Curtiss thinks that the world needs more very light, small, amateur-built aircraft, but that they shouldn’t be too small.
Martin XA-51. It has eight cannons. Eight! 

“The Battle of Britain: Excerpts from an Historic Despatch by Air Chief Marshal Sir Hugh Dowding” If I am reading this right, this despatch was prepared without reference to the German records. That's pretty pointless, doesn’t it?

Time, 23 September 1946


Feliz A. Pirani, of Hertford College, Oxford, England, chides “Deist Sheehan” for calling for the censoring of atheists. Regular correspondent Herbert Laub has a quote from the late Justice McReynolds responding to a request for a summary of his career, which went to the effect, “I was born and now am here with a mountain of work demanding my attention night and day.” Thomas Quinn, Jr, is upset at the Russians for ruining jazz. Reverend Josiah Chatham, of Natcher, Miss., is upset at the paper for implying that more democracy (in Japan) goes together with more divorce (in general), with the implication that this is a good thing. Exequil A. Puelma, ex-Consul of Chile in New York, is puzzled by a bit in a recent story that describes Chileans as “freethinkers” rather than Catholics. Charles Dunn writes to say that the news that Barnaby is being ghost-written was not “scooped” in the last number of the paper, but was published back in The Reflector back in June. Bob Berellez, news editor of the Nogales Daily Herald, is intrigued by the suggestion that when Jackie Robinson played AA, it was the first time that a Negro had played AA without being “passed off as a Cuban, etc,” and asks for specific examples, to which the paper supplies the name of Charley Grant, “for one,” former secondbaseman of the old Baltimore Orioles, who passed as an Indian.
The story of Charlie Grant is  apparently well known, so it is the "amongst others" that intrigues.

National Affairs

I am sure that I do not have to summarise events leading up to Secretary Wallace’s resignation, which the paper is too early to bed to cover here. You can probably guess that the paper supports Byrnes, thinks that Wallace is awful, and is firming up in its opinion that the President is an idiot.
Both Time and Newsweek run this picture next week. It's a thing.

“End of the Line” The Administration is BUNGLING the sailors’ strikes. The truckers’ strike in New York City was also horrible, with grocery stores closing and UPS going out on their own strike to recover lost wages as soon as the truck drivers came back.

“Tweedledum v. Tweedledee” The rival AFL and CIO attempts to organise the Oak Ridge atomic energy plants was supposed to be an entrée into both organisations’ efforts to organise Southern labour. They have not gone very well, perhaps because of the rivalry.  Also in CIO news, Congress organisers have failed to oust the Communists leading the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers, Albert Fitzgerald, James J. Matles, and Julius Emspak. In the fight to control the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters (AFT), William Green presented the novel theory that the Communists were tying to arrange the defeat of the anti-poll tax law and fair employment bill by “putting themselves at the head of the fight for them.” You see, everyone hates the Commnists, so whatever they are for, everyone else is against, and the Communists are playing on this. Deuced clever of them! In non-labour related agitational news, the American Legion leadership is also under threat from young leftist members, some of whom may or may not be Communists. Also, Ruth McKenney, who is an agitator or a rebel or a Communist or some such, was kicked out of her Communist Party local, because communists are awful.

“The Lady Returns” The President has asked Frances Perkins to return to the Administration as a member of the Civil Service Commission. In unrelated lady news, divorces have reached the highest level in history, with one divorce for every three marriages (502,000 to 1.6 million) , twice the prewar rate.

“Baubles” Thousands of ships were launched in the United States during the war years. And, as tradition has it, they were launched by women who hit them with bottles of sparkling wine. (The best thing you can do with California sparkling wine, if you ask me). That’s not the point, though. The Senate’s Mead Committee has discovered that the christeners were rewarded for their duties with gifts, and that those gifts could be pretty eye-opening, and that the people who did the christening were often surprisingly well-connected. For example, five female relatives of the late Admiral Howard Vickery, former vice chairman of the Maritime Commission, received between them $6,457,065 in shipyard gifts, including in one case diamond bracelets. (Ernie Pyle’s widow received a “$25 gimmick.”) The Committee finds that shipbuilders had a taste for the wives of the great and the good, and that no-one seems to have been neglected. Although “neglect” is fairly relative, here. I was quite happy with my pearl choker until I heard about the six million. . . . 

“Spelling Bee” Fresh from the cottage, Mr. Luce demands coverage: the Connecticut GOP has nominated Raymond E. Baldwin to run for the Senate, James L. McConaughy, head of the United China Relief, for Governor, and John David Lodge, of the Lodge clan, to fill Clare Boothe Luce’s seat.

“Ceiling Zero” The OPA’s attempt to reimpose ceilings on meat prices continues to be the cause (at least according to the paper) of their being no meat. At least, on the bright side, OPA agents are now allowed to carry arms on raids!
Past, foreign country.

“I Chose My Way” Ida Eisenhower, nee Stover, has died. Her five sons were there for her funeral,including Dwight. You’ve heard of Dwight Eisenhower, right? He made good in the war. Dwight. Dwight Eisenhower. I thought I’d say his name a few times. Some names I didn’t say, on the other hand, are MacArthur, Warren, Truman and Taft! Just thought that I would point that out, too. Also, I thought I'd tell a story about how his mother was born a servant in a little cabin in Virginia. Not that I'm saying anything about anyone jumping fences, though I am sure that Uncle George will! What I will say is that the paper has a pretty good idea how to elect a Republican President --I just hope that the Governor's men have their ducks in a row.


“The Speech” The paper points out that the Wallace speech got panned in England by the Telegraph and the Daily Herald. Although the Daily Worker liked it for calling out the “atomaniacs.”

“Doubts in the Dark Square” The Europeans, they are a mysterious people.

“Hope in a Graveyard” An international conference on peace in Genevaagrees that peace is nice.

“Gherkins and Pickled Herrings” Are the two delicacies served at the Lancaster House buffet for the participants in the Palestinian talk, where there are still no Palestinians. Non-Palestinian Arabs have dropped by to demand an Arab Palestine, to which the British have said no. At the Paris talks, Tito is awful and there will never be an end to the German war (apart from the fighting.) At Lake Success, Ukrainians and Greeks are still fighting about that thing they are fighting about.

“Harvest Home” The rains in England have damaged the crops, although not as badly as in Ireland, where famine was only barely averted. The Italian and French harvests have been good, but the German one is little better than last year.

“World Serious” The US Army has been teaching Geman boys to play baseball. Now, the Russians are protesting that it is all too militaristic.

“Steady Comrades” In the paper’s interpretation, the Duchess of Bedford apartments takeover is all Communist directed, and the squatters are just an excuse for bringing on the revolution. Also communising in an odd place, Monaco.

“Normalcy by Night” Wartime regulations on nightclubs have been dropped. The paper, noticing that women still read it, quotes someone saying awful things about show girls. Also very odd and English, mouse racing.

“Moon of Homesickness” The paper needs the Mid-Autumn Festival explained to it. Anyway, the Japanese festival has been marked by demonstrations in front of the Russian embassy, mostly by “elderly farmers,” demanding the return of their sons from Russian captivity. About half a million men of the Kwantung Army are still being held in Russia for forced labour, although the paper decides that that is not nearly sinister enough, and speculates that they might be being held for use as a “shock army of communism.”

I'm starting to worry about the paper's mental health.

Latins are excitable; Cubans are gangsters, Paraguayans are backward, Canadians are boring. Why, their biggest strike is in steel!

Bulgarians and Latins (French) are excitable. Also in trouble, perhaps for embezzling millions of francs, and possibly for being too close to de Gaulle, is Colonel Andre Dewavrin.


“Breathing Spell” The Wall Street sell off failed to end in a Great Depression, but here’s hoping. . .

“Pocket Full of Rye” The Department of Agriculture published preliminary findings accusing General Foods of trying to corner the market in rye this week.

“Treat ‘em Rough” The OPA “swooped” in on the Los Angeles used car trade this week.  Prices are down, for now.

“Little Car, Where Now” Ford and GM have both given up on their proposed small car divisions.

“Sauce for the Goose” Pan Am brought out a lavishly illustrated, 351 page . . . thing . . . proving that it needed to be allocated some transcontinental routes to compete in the world airlines business. It promises that its Republic Rainbow service will have 2 ½ hour flights between New York and Miami instead of 5 ½, for example.

There’s also a nice piece on California fashion houses, another on Revlon’s “Ultra Violet” campaign, and a puff piece on the success of Cinecolor over the last thirteen years. As Uncle George says, if only we'd bought shares in that. . . 

Science, Medicine, Education

“Mighty 2°” The awful summer on the East Coast was the result of a mere 2 degree drop in average temperatures, and had the hidden benefit of a polar air mass from Canada that deflected a major hurricane. Nevertheless, there was 67% more rain this year in New England’s vacation land, and that’s why everyone is so depressed. Whew! For a moment I thought it was because of Communists!

“Stargazers” Two astronomers at the University of Wisconsin, Drs. Joel Stebbins and A. E. Whitford, told the American Astronomical Society about the results of their attempts to picture the hidden centre of our galaxy with infrared-spectrum images. There are thought to be a lot of stars there (otherwise, the galaxy would fly apart) and we can’t see them. Maybe with infrared, we can.

“Air-Cooled Cows” Two “Red Sindhi” Indian cows, potential breeding stock of a much heat-tolerant American herd, were in America this week, the first imports since 1924.

“Jets Are Different” They are easy to fly at medium speeds, very difficult at high speeds. They zoomed by very fast at the Cincinnatti Air Races.

“On the Ropes” Barney Ross, “former lightweight and welterweight champion of the world and an ex-marine,” in the words of the paper (and famous wartime publicity-tour hero) turned himself in to the United States Attorney in Manhattan this week as a self-confessed “dope addict” this week. Diagnosed with malaria caught on Guadalcanal, he found his long-term pain prescription getting away from him. Currently, the American dope addiction problem is at very low levels, but this is due to lack of access to opioids due to the war, and this won’t continue.

“Why Worry?” It might seem as though heart disease, the Nation’s Number 1 killer, is a problem, but the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company’s bulletin this week reports data showing that occulsions of the coronary arteries, implicated in so many heart attacks, are being diagnosed at a higher rate these days because of changing diagnostic standards. Meanwhile, the Army Insitute of Pathology, having made a study of 414 Army men aged 18 to 39 who died of coronary artery disease in wartime, found that “neither drinking, smooking nor overweight had been the cause,” which the paper takes as “comfort to high livers.” But 18—39 is very young for a heart attack. What about men at the more typical ages?

“Safe, Painless Birth?” Drs. Robert Hingson and Waldo Edwards of the U.S. Public health service reported a potential pain-control technique for delivering mothers to the International Congress of Anesthetists in Manhattan this week. It consists of a a “slow, continuous injection of pain-killing drug into the nerve canal at the base of the spine.” It seems to work so far, and also produces a substantial drop in neo-natal deaths, to 11.5 from 20.8. 

“Insulin at 25” The paper covers the great invention of the late Canadian doctor, Sir Frederick Banting. Recent progress includes better, slow-acting insulin solutions, and a general improvement of the chances of diabetic mothers, who used to have a 45% chance of dying in childbirth, but now have the same chances at healthy mothers. However, long-term insulin use is still associated with numerous health issues, and the death rate of diabetics as a proportion of the population has actually risen from 1.4% to 2.5% of the population during the diabetic age, mainly due to the general increase in life expectancies and better diagnosis. Moreover, the death rate due to diabetes fell significantly during the war as rationing curbed overeating.

“On an Empty Stomach” Dr. Herbert Pollack, of Manhattan’s Mount Sinai, and formerly the Army’s chief medical consultant in the ETO, reports that powdered-egg-and-milk mixtures, which are 50% whole protein, was fed to 92,000 liberated GIs, of whom 40% were severely malnourished, and only eight died. This reflects the much greater tolerance that starving bodies have for these bland and easily digestible foods. Dr. Pollack goes on to say that one result of this finding is that doctors will be less tolerant of patients who “dawdle over their convalescence.” Also, he says, “optimistically,” that it tastes wonderful.

“Chemist of Ideas” This week’s cover story is James Bryant Conant, of Harvard University, which will enroll a record total of 11,700 students this year. Professor Conant is president of Harvard, which, given all those students, you might think was work enough. However, he has also found time to have an investigating committee investigate all the high schools and determine that they are much too invested in vocational training. He also wants Harvard to bring in more “talented, tough-minded Westerners and Mid-westerners” to complement its effete esthetes.

People, Press, Radio

Ethel Barrymore is a grandmother.  Betty McDonald is allergic to eggs, which is ironic. James Norman Hall made up “Fern Gravel” as a joke; the sad thing is that Paul Engle fell for it. Erich v. Stroheim is upset that his Great Illusion is doing well in Paris, because he is not that man, any more. Howard Hughes is out of hospital and convalescing.

General Pershing, George VI, and Mrs. Winston Churchill are all also convalescing. The Brazilian royal family is embarrassing. Tyrone Power and Cesare Romero have flown down to Rio, and then on to Santiago, Chile. The paper prints a picture of three young Soongs, in San Francisco on their way (in a hurry) to enroll at Washington’s Trinity College and Quaker prep schools in Baltimore and Long Island.

Mayor William O’Dwyer’s “school-teaching sister,” Kathleen, was caught trying to smuggle 500 pairs of nylons through Irish customs. Elihu Yale, ninth-generation descendant of thefounder, enrolled at Yale this year. Geraldine Fitzgerald has married, and George Washington Hill and Dr. Arthur E. Hertzler have died. Hill was the third generation of his family to head the company, but his obituary in the paper says that it was “ability, not nepotism” that got him his job. This isn’t science, though, so no actual evidence is needed for the sentence.

King Features paid $1500 last week for the comic-strip rights to Rosamund Marshall’s Duchess Hotspur, now that its anti-dirty books campaign is tapering off. Unlike many other magazines, Ladies’ Home Journal is getting ever bigger and more expensive because its circulation keeps rising. Two more journalists at loose ends are starting their own magazines: Clarence Streit is starting Freedom and Union, and Michael Straight, assisted by two other “millionaire’s sons –Cousin John HayWhitney and Nelson Rockefeller—“ is starting United Nations World. In New York, the truckers’ strike has rationed the papers down to four pages each. Horace Schwerin has brought in a new audience reception test for NBC, using live audiences to gauge the success of NBC radio shows. It is very scientific, because the system fills out “punch cards recording all reactions.”

The New Pictures

Three Wise Fools Margaret O’Brien wins the hearts of three curmudgeons played by Edward Arnold, Lionel Barrymore and Lewis Stone over something about Irish magic and elves and such. On the set, everyone is agreed that the real witch is Miss O’Brien. The paper seems to be suggesting that the audience should get in on the witch-burning (or movie not-seeing) action.
Isn't she just the cutest sad little girl?

  The Time of Their Lives is the second movie out this week featuring a tree haunted by spirits, and so demonstrates a “mild trend towards fantasy.” The Welldigger’s Daughter isn’t a very good movie, but it is French, and so much more than just another Abbot and Costello vehicle.
With all of this week's toxic reviews, let's look ahead a year to the movie adaptation of The Egg and I, better known as the first "Ma and Pa Kettle" movie. 


Someone named Ferris Greenslet has been graciously permitted to write The Lowells and Their Seven Sons. The were all very famous and distinguished, and one of them is the astronomer who swore he saw canals on the planet Mars.

  The Sudden Guest, by Christopher La Farge, is a book about how a rich old lady tries to bar some Jewish motorists seeking refuge from a hurricane from her estate because she’s awful. The paper points out that this is the co-winner of the Book of the Month for this year with Animal Farm, and is very huffy about it, since one is anti-communist and the other is pro. . . being nice to Jewish people? The paper is getting a bit dyspeptic.

Flight, 26 September 1946


“Control for the Future” Hopefully PICAO delegates came away from the demonstrations convinced of the awesome excellence of British equipment, and ready to discuss standardisation and long term policy.

“. . . And for the Present” We need better control now (illustrated by a near head-on collision in landing between a York and a Venezuelan Skymaster), including adequate radar and radio aids for London Airport before winter weather sets in.

“Speeds and Mach Numbers” de Havilland has been implying that its DH 108 is faster than the record-setting Gloster Meteor, but this is not, in fact, true. It has a higher Mach number and so will go faster, if it has enough thrust. Right now, the thrust available to the Meteor is far greater than to the DH 108.  Less is known of the Supermarine E.10/44, but it may well be faster, if its Mach number is high enough.
Of course, it's  not, because of the wing, which Supermarine/Vickers gets wrong, and will keep on getting wrong through the TSR competition, and maybe even the Tornado, and it's all Barnes Wallis's fault, but he never gets tagged with the blame, because he's just so good at publicity. Here, have some Dambuster's March!

“Towed Tailless: Experimental General Aircraft Glider for Flight Research Purposes” General Aircraft’s towed, tailless glider is a cheap and versatile way to try out tailless aircraft characteristics.

Here and There

Two British glider pilots set a new height record for two-seat gliders at 7,800ft, up from 5000. It is possible that by the time the paper goes to print, the Americans will have set a new speed record with the Republic P-84 Thunderjet aiming for 619mph. It is suggested that airline seats might be faced to the rear, for safety. General Aircraft is proposing a 90 seat tailless airliner. BOAC stewardesses have a smart new uniform. The party leaders in the Australian general election are campaigning by air, because the country is so big. Also big, America, where “gas station”-style airports are springing up to support civil pilots.

“Lincolns at Lindholme” The paper sends a photographer to take pictures of the Lincolns of 57 Squadron in Yorkshire. They are quite nice, if not B-29s.

“Flight in the Nene Lancastrian: A Foretaste of Turbo-Jet Airline Travel: An Interim Case for Mixed-power Aircraft: Nene Performance” The Nene Lancastrian is just a flying test bed, but that hasn’t stopped people from speculating that the mixed-plant layout is the coming thing. As the paper points out, this is a bit stilly, given that both engine types will be dead weight when the other is doing all the work, and the noise-reducing advantages of the jet turbines is entirely lost. Meanwhile, installing the Nene requires substantial re-plumbing work around the plane in return for little or no gain in cruising performance.

“Gas Turbines in America: Air Commodore Whittle’s Impression of a Visit” Air Commodore Whittle’s impression is that American development is about ten years behind British, and that the main deficit lay in detailed design. Less development was going on in American than in Britain. American speed record attempts benefit from Southwest weather, the Americans really like ramjets, and he has heard of the XS-1.

Civil Aviation News

“The American Way” American airlines are run differently from the British way of doing things. Regulation is different. Publicly-owned firms must publish their books, unlike BOAC.  

In shorter news, talks over pilot pay scales are continuing between BOAC and GAPAN, an Anglo-Italian agreement and an Anglo-Dutch one have been reached, Trans-Canadian will extend its trans-Atlantic service from Prestwick to Heathrow (which is what we call London Airport, etc.), and people thought that the BOAC displays of York interiors at Radlett were quite nice.

“Indicator,” “In the Air, XX: The Hurricane: First of the Modern Fighters: Safe and Solid Qualities: Some Memories of the Different Versions”
“Indicator” first flew the Hurricane in its two-pitched (airscrew) version, albeit still with fabric-covered wings. This was late in 1939, and far from his last flight in a Hurricane, a IIC with four cannons and long-range jettison tanks. It was a nice, dependable plane, especially for inexperienced pilots. For example, it had a good view, both on the air and in the ground, and plenty of flaps for drag to simplify the approach allowing the pilot to come in close enough to nose-down to see the airfield. The big flaps and wide track undercarriages made bad landings easier, and the wings tolerated the spontaneous disappearance of very large bits of gun-panels without becoming inclined to stall. The early controls were imperfect, and “Indicator” fondly recalls fiddling with the pitch controls without knowing what they did! Much of his flying experience with the type was specifically testing the jettison tanks and getting some idea of fuel consumption while using them. Eventually, the plane was reduced to an airfield workhorse, and “Indicator” recalls running errands in them and putting them down in spaces previously reserved for Tiger Moths.
Ten years from prototype "mystery ship" to quaint antique. The iPhone 1 launched on 9 January 2007.


H. J. Ten Zythoff writes to point out, amongst other Theirs is the Glory facts, that the tickets for the Amsterdam premiere are being issued on aluminum from the gliders. Graham K. Gates blithers on for a page about amateur designs, and “Ex-A.T.C. Instructor” says that the RAF manpower shortage is because of Air Force BUNGLING.
Clipped cover photo.

Newsweek –The Magazine of News Significance, 30 September 1946


Arthur L. Van Sickle, of the Canal Zone, points out that, whatever their faults, the Communists at least promise a   world state, and so should we. Vincent Sudela, USNR, of San Antonio, Texas, thinks that before we fight WWIII, we should cut rents and deal with the meat shortage, because otherwise morale will be low. Candace L. Peters is excited by the news of the Sanford-Humoller permanent wave (I won’t comment, because I will just sound like a stereotypical woman), and half-ironically jokes thatscience has finally accomplished something worthwhile. Harold Dean Rogers, of Baltimore, takes the bait on that one and swallows hard. Flloyd Allerton, of Chicago, and Lucille K. Bligher, of this city, have equal and opposite opinions of Aronson’s “Coronation of the Virgin.”

The publisher’s letter welcomes Henry Hazlitt, the paper’s new Business Tides columnist, and author of Economics in One Easy Lesson. In cae you were wondering about that elegant transliteration, I haven't suddenly developed a poet's soul. Mr. Hazlitt has the same family name of an English literati of the last century who was widely translated by eminent gentlemen of Ch'ing. The paper takes pains to let us know that Mr. Hazlitt is no relation. 
Although the theme of mid-century rich people's children denying their silver spoons three times is starting to develop around here, Hank Hazlitt's denial is justs so astonishingly self-defeating that I thought I'd make a point of bringing it up. It's certainly not because he's another unctuous libertarian. That would just be editorialising.  

The Periscope

The reason that the President is BUNGLING is that he is an idiot. The paper broadly implies.

“Democratic Campaigners” The Administration’s best campaigners hit the trail this week to draw the sting of the Wallace Affair. In unrelated brief news, the French are resisting plans to unify the western zones of the German occupation, and German veterans’ groups are springing up in the American zone. Secretary Byrne’s will soon decide to publish secret Nazi-Soviet documents recovered from the German archives. The paper suggests that the archives were the reason that the Soviets tried so hard to occupy Berlin ahead of the Americans. American generals knew that the archives had been secretly removed to the future American zone of occupation, so they let the Russians go ahead, sly dogs that they were.

 Well, it’s an interesting interpretation of the spring of 1945, I’ll give it that. Also, communists are terrible in Italy, Bulgaria and Saxony.

Domestically, auto-dealers are organising to deal with bad apples, airplane-to-ground communication for passengers may be offered by airlines in the next few months, and domestic airlines are expected to make $625 million in capital investments over the next five years. The Mexican border has been reopened to meat imports to alleviate the meat shortage now that the Mexican herd has been certified hoof-and-mouth free. The lumber set-aside for public housing may be increased soon from 50 to 60% of sawmill production. Donald Nelson’s memoirs are expected to bruise some former friends and associates. General Marshall has promised not to publish his memoirs, but his wife is bringing our hers. Hmm, goes the paper. The electronics division of the War Assets Administration is being reorganised to speed the sale of 2 billion dollars’ worth of war surplus. In short Hollywood news the most remarkable bit is a studio putting 50 Indian actors under long term contract because of the increasing shortage of Indians for Western movies.

I'm worried that Mr. O'Malley's cynicism will have a negative effect on the younger generation. 

Washington Trends

Most of the page dwells on the effects of Secretary Wallace’s firing. It is agreed that the Democratic Party’s left-wing coalition is doomed, that a progressive party may make a third-party run in 1948 under a Wallace banner, That Byrnes’ star is on the rise (brr), that the decline of the armed forces can now be checked, and that the armed forces’ cooling interest in Atlantic bases is not a reaction to Wallace’s musings about “base grabbing,” but a reflection of their limited value in an age of atomic war. More strikes are briefly noted, and it is reported that while meat price control will continue for the time being, poultry and dairy products may be recontrolled!!! There are to be changes in tax laws. (I’ve prepared a run-down of how they affect the family, below.)
When it comes to negotiating rent, it turns out that the Portuguese and Icelanders are appallingly ungrateful about all the Free-World-Defending Washington is prepared to do.

National Affairs

“The Wallace Nightmare” Eight days after his Madison Square Garden speech blasting Jimmy Byrnes’ Get-Tough-with-Russia approach, and the next day’s release of his 4000 word 23 July memo on national security by Drew Pearson, Wallace is out of office. The paper gives the strong impression that Byrnes gave the President his marching orders by teletype, and Averill Harriman’s arrival as Secretary of Commerce is both a promotion for a “trouble-shooter” and a reinforcement of Byrne’s interest.

Elliott Roosevelt’s Fight for Peace, out the same week, casts Wallace in an unflattering light. Of course, it also casts everyone up to, and including the author, in the same unfortunate light, so there you go.

Trucking Peace” and “Shipping Truce” Somehow, the two big strikes have been resolved without the world ending. Meat is still short, however.

“A General on Negroes” In a 1945 conversation with Truman K. Gibson, a Coloured War Department civilian aide, General Joseph McNarney said the usual, awful things about Coloured people in general and Coloured troops in particular. Now out of War Department employ, Mr. Gibson has reported them to Ebony, and General McNarney is very embarrassed.

In shorter news, the increase in Philadelphia’s property levy to fund pay increases for municipal employees has not gone over well. Chester Bowles has been denied the GOP nomination for governor of Connecticut by party insiders, Pontiac, Michigan is a mess due to a strike by municipal employees, and the last District of Columbia employee of the Physical Fitness Division of the Office of Civilian Defence is trying to get rid of 33,000 armbands, 27,000 feet of hose, 9,000 helmets, 3,000 pumps and 3,700 gas masks. The paper finds the WCTU’s continuing efforts hilarious, because this is the kind of thing that middle aged women do.

Washington Tides, with Ernest K. Lindley, “Wallace –And Peace” Wallace is terrible, but he is not the only one. Every congressman who demanded that “the boys be brought home” in the last year was also helping communism.

“The Red Mantle” Senator Claude Pepper is a pink, if not a Red. Also terrible, at the United Nations, Ambassador Gromyko, over Greece. Also, UN delegates like Westchester County. Further bulletins as events warrant.

Foreign Affairs

“Europe: Churchill’s Call for a U. S. of E.” It would be just like the old days, when Charlemagne created an iron curtain of his own, between civilised Europe(?) and the rampaging barbarians beyond.
All history is contemporary history, etc. 

In shorter foreign news, the rocket bombs that have been seen in Sweden all summer have now spread to Germany; the Russians have “washed out” their red by replacing The Internationale with The Hymn of the Soviet Union, and by ditching the label “Red Army.” The collective farm administration in Russia has been purged but not in a purge like the 30s.

Yugoslavs and Latins are excitable. In Paris, Trieste has become “symbol” of everything that’s wrong with the world today. You see, it is just like Danzig in 1939, in the sense that they are both places that have names.

“Squatters Rest” The squatters are out of the Duchess of Bedford House in London. In other English news, it rained even more last week, with a storm hitting on the 20th, damaging the harvest. Jewish refugee ships tried to fight their way through the English blockade into Haifa, and the Faeroe Islands have voted for independence from Denmark by a bare majority of 150 votes out of 11,150 cast.

“Kaiser the Christian” Jacob Kaiser, the CDU leader in Berlin, is anti-communist, and therefore the best man ever.

“Viet Nam: Recognition” President Ho Chi Minh has been recognised as leader of Annam within the French Union. He has made food and education his priorities, and denies that he is a communist, much less a Soviet citizen.
The inscription reads: "Sword of the King of the Southern Land [Yue]." Not the king of the Bach Viet. The Bach Viet never existed, and if it did exist, it's gone now. Also, the Spratley Islands are ours! By Siyuwj - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

“Japan: The Long, Long Trial” The war crime trials in Tokyo are taking forever, largely because of translation issues. Japanese spectators are appalled at what the Army got up to, although whether it is the atrocities or the incompetence that matters most to them is not clear. (I’m guessing that it is the incompetence, given how many of their boys their generals killed.)

Foreign Tides, with Joseph B. Phillips, “Weymouth Street: From V1s to Squatters”

Phillips lived in Weymouth Mews through the buzz-bombs and it was terrible. At the end of the war, one of the neighbouring buildings, which had been requisitioned to billet US officers, had been vacant for more than a year. BEfore the war, it was an apartment building that used to rent rooms at 10 guineas (“$42 or so”) a week, had been vacant for more than a year. The roof leaked, windows were broken, and the elevator shaft had buckled. The borough council had been slow in returning the building to its owners, who had in turn been slow to find the £15,000 or so required to repair the place. So in came 40 squatters. Apparently, the communists had organised this with devilish care, as the squatters were all sympathetic cases: employed, well able to afford rents if there had been places to rent; and families torn apart by the war, separated by evacuations, basically domiciled in the subways for years in some cases, demobilised soldiers unable to find a place to live, and a mother and her children who had lived “in a field” for three months. One might feel tempted to be sympathetic to their plight. But, you know, communism. Still, the government should do something, since, otherwise, communism.

In Canada, teachers are underpaid, everyone is upset at an awful column by Toronto-born King Features Syndicate columnist George Dixon, and someone unexpected won a by-election.

In Latin America, it is very hard to make an Argentine-Britain trade agreement into a story about excitable Latins.


“Railroads: Red Ink and Freight Rates” The stock market decline may have ended, but not the bad profit news. That is why the railroads want higher freight rates.

“ATOM: Sight of Doom” Chester W. Barnard, of the New Jersey Bell Telephone Company and the State Department’s advisory committee on atomic affairs, fears that the atom bomb, or possibly just regular bombs, will soon annihilate our cities and civilisation.

“Air: Death in the Fog” The SABENA crash in Labrador has a silver lining as 18 survivors are found at the scene and treated by an army doctor who had to canoe in 22 miles* to reach them, until a helicopter which had been flown in, dismantled, in a C-54, from New Jersey, could evacuate them one at a time.

“Raw Dealing” Colonel Raymond Kramer has recently left his job as economic boss of Japan to return to New York and –become a silk dealer. You can guess the rest of this story! Although, to be fair, it sounds as though something has to be done to get the American silk industry such as it is, back on peacetime footing. In similar news, there is more movement back towards natural rubber as controls come off and more Malayan plantation land is brought back into production, often at greatly increased yields per acre.

“Trust: The A and P Test” The A and P grocery chain and its seventeen subsidiaries have been convicted in an anti-trust case.

“Products: What’s New” “Leathite,” a combination of chopped scrap leather with acetate and water; a pre-coiled pipe cleaner, by Nu-Pak Pipe Cleaner, of North Hollywood, California, and an automatic ticket vendor machine on the Pennsylvania Railroad.

Business Tides, with Henry Hazlitt, “How ‘Stabilisation’ Unstabilises”
Unions are terrible. Price controls are terrible. Wage controls are okay. The Government is BUNGLING meat.  

Science, Medicine

“Colossus of Java” Dr. G. H. v. Koenigswald, discoverer of Java Man, who, it turns out was a Japanese internee for 30 months, has personally delivered his gigantic fossils to the American Museum of Natural History.

“Measuring Cosmic Rays” Dr. J. A. Van Allen reported preliminary results of the V-1 rocket cosmic ray measurements to the American Physical Society this week. IN particular, a particularly thick belt of cosmic rays was encountered miles above the Earth.

“Cloud Meter” A very sensitive set of instruments mounted on the summit of Mount Washington, New Hampshire, has measured the volume of water in a cloud. Similar such instrument, deployed at automated weather stations, will allow meteorologists to predict the amount of ice that will form on aircraft.

“Chemical Quartet” Four new chemical discoveries were announced to the American Chemical Society, meeting in Chicago this week. Drs. Donald F. Othmer and Sidney A. Savitt, of the Polytechnic Institute, Brooklyn, have discovered a new, cheaper way of synthesising niacin. Staff members of the Jewish Hospital, Brooklyn, have discovered a way of rendering Vitamin A water soluble. University of Wisconsin researchers report the discovery of chemicals which enhance the effectiveness of penicillin, including phenylacetic acid. And Parke, Davis and Co., chemists, have discovered a new form of streptomycin, the more stable dihistreptomycin. N. H. Horowitz, of Stanford, has produced 29 new species of fungus by exposingspores to mustard gas, a useful way of stepping up changes in the hereditary character of certain plants and animals for research purposes. It has also been discovered that even moderate heat rapidly degrades the effectiveness of DDT.

“Paging the Pied Piper” The common house rat, both black and brown, has been an American scourge since its 1775 introduction, and has increased rapidly during the war years. With indications of an increase in rat-borne diseases such as plague, amoebic dysentery, ptomaine poisoning and tularemia, and polio virus has been found in rat droppings, the United States Public Health Administration is calling for Something to be Done. Better rat poisons re needed.

“War and Ulcers” The common belief is that stress causes ulcers and the Army expected a rise in ulcer cases during the war. Unexpectedly this proved not to be the case, and while the Army had a great many men disabled by ulcers, most of them were found to have acquired their ulcers anywhere up to five years before enlistment. Attempts to cure these ulcers were unproductive, but while they sometimes progressed to very severe ulcers, they did not lead to cancers, so that is good news. The only treatment so far effective has been bland diets, although the neurosurgery route has proved promising. Other doctors are looking at less drastic cures.

Ann’s Hungry Sister” An even more virulent malaria-carrying mosquito may have been identified in the South Carolina swamps recently.

Insulin’sQuarter Century” Insulin is twenty-five years old and has changed the lives of diabetics beyond measure, but much remains to be done in treating the secondary conditions found to arise in long-term diabetic patients, of which the worst is kidney failure –or possibly gangrene of the extremities, which sounds horrible and can also lead to death.  

“Local Brothers” It is well known that national fraternities discriminate on grounds of religion and race and colleges have tutt-tutted this for years. Now Amherst College has actually gone so far as to ban a fraternity and seize its assets.

“Mr. O’Malley, PhD.” Barnaby and O’Malley is covering a teachers’ strike. The paper tries to explain why it is hilarious, even though the strip has been taken over by some scabs.


Mr. Ace is a screwball comedy, ruined by the fact that the protagonists are unlikable. Blue Skies, featuring Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, is a waste of both men’s’ talents. The paper is harsh. Whether it is fair, we will have to see, as uncle George will certainly not let me miss this one! (Uncle George finds Mr. Crosby very handsome, as you may have guessed.)
Der Bingle, doing his bit to make frozen orange juice concentrate and surface effects transistors happen. 

Professor Theodore Thomson-Flynn, father of Errol Flynn, got in the news by saying something silly. Barbara Hutton has bought a place in Tangier, Morocco. Colonel Boyington is retiring. Shirley Temple has made it to her first anniversary. Martha Firestone has married a Ford in the spirit of American egalitarianism. Will their son be self-made? (In the same vein, Arthur C. Dorrance, president of Campbell’s Soup, in succession to his father before him, has died at 53.) Ann Southern is divorcing. Stewart Edward White has died.  

Radio, Press
“Stooge into Star” Mel Blanc, Kenny Delmar, and Phil Harris are the latest “stooges” to try to make it as radio stars.

With Wallace Bled” One prominent journalist quit over his newspaper’s call on Wallace to resign, another is upset that Pearson scooped him on the Wallace memo. Other stories in this section manage to be even more self-involved. I wonder what reader who is not a member of the Washington press corps could care about what one member of the press corps thinks of another, etc.

Two books are out by two New Yorkers who are just so smart and distinguished and literary that it would be an insult to the paper’s readers to explain anything about the books, or the authors, without spending page wandering around first. If that interests you, the men are Ellery Sedgwick and Thomas Lamont, and the books are about art and stuff like that.

At the other extreme of things, C. S. Forester has what might as well be the last Hornblower book out, Lord Hornblower.  Because he is a lord and an admiral, and not because he has turned awful. And J. B. Priestley has a book out that sounds awfully self-indulgent.

On the back page, Raymond Moley tells us that the Nuremberg Trials are making history by punishing war-making.

*Actually 5, but it is still an amazing story, and almost more amazing that Doctor Martin had to waut until 2007 to be decorated for his efforts. 

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