Thursday, June 5, 2014

Postblogging Technology, May 1944, I: Pent Up

My Dearest Reggie:

I find after finishing my personal note that it has evolved into a long complaint about the local sept of our kin across the divide of 1822. It should not be that way, and I would wish instead to raise a smile on your face by recording that your youngest was actually permitted to escort "Miss V.C." to a dance at the college. He was over the moon before he conceived the idea that she was only trying to make Lieutenant A. jealous, at which point he crashed back to Earth with the moody speed of his age. Your eldest will be flying back from Boston next week, and writes with Kodaks of the jumpers he has bought for the babies enclosed. Your daughter-out-of-law has resumed walks with Mrs. Murphy, who recovered from her own delivery more quickly. Judith is a marvel with the babies. It is as though experience counted in this matter of being a grandmother --or in this case a substitute grandmother.

(Included in this package are pictures for you, and another package that you will direct to Chungking via the usual channels for your  counterparts.)

And now to return to the more depressing matter of challenges and questionable investments. I am glad to  hear that the Earl has taken note of the febrile condition of the London Exchange, and stopped pressing, however temporarily, for an agreement with "Cousin H.C." I do not know how I shall wiggle out of the trap, in the end though.

That depressing thought was occasioned by an uncomfortable interview with the Engineer and his son,  a  miserable day

brightened by his daughter, brought to meet her grandfather. Though it is still a depressing thought that the girl will not see her grandfather between what is deemed in that cursed line the age of reason and such maturity as signifies discretion. (Not that we do things that differently.) In any case, "M" was there to ensure that I would bit my tongue when the Engineer urged me to get on with making our investment in Fontana. He knows that I think the idea potentially disastrous. I am sure that he agrees with me; and, therefore, I am sure he is doing it out of pure malice.

Since I can hardly say what I think in front of a three-year-old, I need bite my tongue, only gesturing in the direction of the Invasion --and, floating a trial balloon, the Election. That is where the Engineer went queer, scorning the prospects of the European war, and sure that the election will go against the Democrats, in 1948 if not 1944. which he seems to think will end as it did in 1918. "Look to the Pacific," he told me. "It will be MacArthur in Tokyo in 1945, and MacArthur in the White House in 1948. It is about time that this country did away with one party, one section rule." I levelly asked him if he really believed that, and he shrugged. The idea of MacArthur winning in 1948 is a long shot, but, on the military side, he seems much more firm, persuaded that Nimitz will eventually take one risk too many, and that the Army will rescue the Navy. The air admirals, he told me, are all either idiots or square pegs, and will make sure of it. He should know, he observes cynically. He appointed many of them.

I can hardly argue with that. I did point out the Fortune poll, mentioned below, which found MacArthur more popular amongst Southern business managers than Roosevelt. Is it not the case that the problem with the "Solid South" is that voters there are too deferential to local leadership? The Engineer waved me away, but his son's eyes showed a certain alertness. Incurious, but not unintelligent, I will say again. "M" may yet see her father in high office. 

Speaking of gradual initiations, a most interesting conversation with "Miss V.C." she now knows that there can have been no McKee commanding Spokane House in 1811, as it was not founded until 1812. How then to account for her mother's certainty that "McKee" was in the country that year --the year before Astoria? It must be California, she concludes. The McKees were involved in Upper California before the Companies came to the Northwest.

But what was their business, she asks, sharply: fur to Canton, even then? If so, by the Maritime Trade? She pulls out her copy of Irving's Astoria. Her finger hovers over the name of Alexander McKay, an inspired, if entirely mistaken guess, and swoops off to the romantic heather to draw in Thomas Muir, spinning a tale of international intrigue rather more plausible than the truth.

Flight, 4 May 1944


“Identification Difficulties” Looking back at tragic episodes in the invasion of Sicily in which transports full of paratroopers, suggests that something should be done to make sure that this does not happen again. I hope that all of the fleet AA gunners are fans of the paper’s “Studies in Recognition!”

“Internationalisation: A Supra-national Air Force?” Labour thinks that civil aviation should be international and that the United Nations should possess the ability to bomb aggressor nation’s factories to prevent aggression. I imagine that this will seem like a bloodless alternative to war until we actually start killing factory workers. And the infants in the nursery school that is inevitably right next to the factory. I know that if the bombs blew up my paper work, they would inevitably blow up some screeching toddlers.
I have mixed feelings, is what I am saying, Reggie.

The caption says it all. 

If it does not, news of a second airborne landing behind Japanese lines in Burma tells the tale. The “Air Commando,” headed by Colonel Philip Cochran  apparently consists of ground crew and engineers to operate an airhead to support the airborne force’s operations. I do not imagine that this will work in France by itself, but an inland airhead combined with coastal landings might stretch the German garrison further. There has also been a landing on the western tip of New Guinea, and continuing attacks on Rabaul to give the Admiral something to do. Surely he needs his entire staff for this work? In Europe, Bomber Command is assailing communications to impede German reinforcements, and the German Air Force continues to hoard its reserves.  Mines in the Baltic are now closing neutral ports as well, with shipping blocked up in a Swedish port for three days waiting for the minesweeping flotilla to be available. This might seem impolitic, but we certainly do not want the Germans getting their hands on high grade Swedish iron ore, which is often more than 55% ferric material by weight. Berlin was attacked in daylight by 750 Eighth Air Force bombers. Fat Chow reports a day out with the Japanese Colonel intriguing for his radio station on the Unter den Linden. The man is beside himself.

“Tactical Air Support” The paper attends a demonstration by an American unit of Ninth Air Force Fighter Command, under Brigadier General E. R. Quesada, an unusual name, although I somehow suspect that he is not the son of a New Mexican vaquero. General Quesada’s force includes Mustangs, Lightnings, and Thunderbolts, and, in an interesting demonstration, a CG-4A glider, which was shown landing a jeep with a radio to provide an instant forward air support party. I hope that the radio in the jeep is more rugged than the one in the parlour, which was knocked over by Lieutenant A the other week and spent 10 days in the shop before I gave up waiting for parts from the distributor and sought out the necessary valves on the water.

Here and There

The Irish have suspended airmail deliveries to a variety of overseas locations. England is being locked down so tightly that it must be squeaking! “Canute in Kingsway” Variious pacifists want area bombing shut down. If the paper’s view is not clear enough from the section header, it quotes a member of the audience as scolding Mr. Rhys Davies,M.P., for asserting that the war had been brought on by the “monied interest.” It is reported that the Douglas P-70 is now one of the most heavily armed fighters in the world. This will be frightening news for any German bomber slow enough to be caught by it, so Gotha pilots everywhere beware! Douglas, on the other hand, deserves hearty congratulations for extending the newspaper lifespan of this ancient plane. 

“—If Any” Someone has filed for the postwar California-Tokyo air route. The paper amuses itself by suggesting that there might not be a Tokyo after the war. Remind me to share this hilarious jape with any Japanese women and children I see. Even more hilarity on the subject of exterminating the Japanese race follows in Stubblefield's column.

“RAAF Expansion” The RAAF is now twenty times larger than it was before the war, and “25.3 percent” larger than it was in 1943. It has so far spent £265 million on maintenance.  “Long, Long Trail” A story of how Red Army men did a five day trek into the Arctic wilderness to recover two German fighters and their pilots, and packed the dismantled planes out on 100 reindeer.

 “Loaned to the BBC” Mr. E. Coulston Shepherd, of the Air League of Great Britain, has been lent to the BBC as an Air Correspondent for the Invasion. It should be a nice change of pace for Mr. Coulston Shepherd, from professionally frightening Colonel Blimps to paid employment. The paper points out an Aviation article on castering undercarriage wheels and laments that it did it first, but that the MacLaren undercarriage is being ignored in its home country, even as the industrious Americans take it up. It is all, I dimly remember being told in my youth, down to disestablishmentarianism

“Apprentices” The Society of British Aircraft Constructors has recommendations on the subject! They will be forthcoming at a later date. “Indian Wind Tunnel.” India is to have a wind tunnel. A hilarious joke at the expense of the HindustanTimes, Gandhi, Jinnah, or, really, any number of subjects may be inserted. 

“Death of John A. Crosby-Warren” The deceased, who wrote for Flight as “Sparrow,” died while testing a prototype aircraft. A Cambridge MA, he served with the Cambridge University Squadron of the RAFVR, did a brief apprenticeship with Bristol, and went on to be one of the senior test pilots in the Hawker-Siddeley pool, testing experimental jet aircraft. I suppose that it is not news that Gloster is involved in the jet programme, given that the one publicly known British jet was a Gloster machine, but I do not imagine that Crosby-Warren was flying the publicised plane. On the other hand, what do I know?

Behind the Lines

“Flying Dentists” The Germans are now flying dentists into bombed areas with their eupment. “Caproni” is absorbing various independent firms in Fascist northern Italy. “Secret Research” Into rocket (or jet?) propelled pilotless aircraft, controlled from the ground by wireless, are said to be conducted by the Germans on the Baltic island of Bornholm. One aircraft crashed into the ground, causing a violent explosion. German laboratories are said to have developed a non-crack, splinter-proof, pressure-resistant high altitude glass. The Blohm und Voss6-engined flying boat is reported, equipped with either 985hp BMW 325s or Jumodiesels. Excellent news; passengers of the future borne by the  engines of 1939!

“Round the Spitfire XII” We can now show you that the Spitfire XII is a very pretty plane. Hopefully, so is the plane that has replaced it!

“Flying Fortress (B-17G)” I was a bit hard on the paper above. It can only report what it can report, and sometimes air forces play it close to the chest. Other times, as with this may-paged technical report on a front-line bomber, they do not. The B-17G is no longer state-of-the-art, of course. That would be the B-29, with whatever even larger plane is following along behind, much intimated by news of ever larger generators and airscrews. The B-17G is a still further improvement. It does not have a tail turret, quite yet, although it does have two guns in a gunner-operated sponson, a considerable improvement over the old “tunnel” gun. It does have a chin turret.

Still, the B-17G is still much improved over the original. The paper notes that the B-17D (i.e. “Forterss I”) weighed 40,000lbs, while the Fortess II (B-17E) weighed 50,000. The article goes on to describe the internal arrangements and structure of the B-17 in significant detail.

I am not sure how significant the static structure of an aircraft is, however, especially when it is passé. The same cannot be said for the two ads on the interleaved full page spread, which suggests that the paper restrictions on Flight are being relaxed. The first is for Cellon, or, as it now calls itself, Cellon Laboratories. You and I are familiar with it as the manufacturer of record of cellulose acetate, the wood-based plastic for which a bright future is so often predicted. In the aviation case, it is an important “dope” for treating surfaces. However, the Cellon ad does not mention any of this, but rather describes sulphite drugs, antiseptics, anti-insect sprays, and even a hand cream! So that is what the company has been branching out into.

Unfortunate given our timber interests, as we might have hoped for more uses of cellulose acetate on a par with rayon.

Studies in Aircraft Recognition

Today we are treated to the Martin Mariner, Short Sunderland, and PBY Catalina, which can be told apart while still in the air, albeit not as easily when sitting on the shoal, six fathoms down.

“Future of Civil Aviation” Sir Roy Fedden believes it has one. In order to be less boring, he then makes up stories about future “all wing” airplanes. They really are on the horizon this time! Fedden, or perhaps the paper, protests about “unjustified criticism” of flying boats. He also talks about futureengines, which might include a 42 cylinder(!) air-cooled engine giving 5000hp, presumably powering flying boats with an all-up-weight of 300,000lbs, at which point we will give one to the King of Siam, I suppose.


Seems to be by men with time on their hands, all in a mood to argue with other letter writers of previous numbers. John Lawrence, “B.Sc.” thinks that V-hull flying boats are inherently stable, so you need not worry about the wing floats; Leonard Taylor of the A.T.C. Gazette thinks that the design of the official A.T.C. officer headgear simply must be a peaked cap versus the field service cap, else the entire corps will soon be laid low by sunstroke or colds. R. J. M. Baron thinks that jet engines would be splendid for all-wing aircraft. Indicator defends his opinion that the problem of finding crews for “mammoth” airliners has not really been properly confronted. Various persons are upset about the allegation that members of the Royal Observer Corps is leaking information about top secret aircraft.

The Economist, 6 May 1944


“Election Illusions” The paper notices that Governor Dewey will be the Republican candidate, and that the President will be the Democratic candidate, but concludes that this does not mean that it can stop paying the most tortuous attention to the election campaign until it actually starts. On the contrary, for the most important reasons, it must go on torturing the reader until Labour Day, at which point it can get on with torturing us. Extra points for noticing that at one point General MacArthur was “leading in the polls.”

“Appointments Vacant” It is noted that there will be a shortage of teachers after the war. The paper therefore feels that it can put its editorial weight behind a Committee that wants to make it harder to be a teacher, while discouraging pay increases and the expansion of teacher training, at least at universities, and possibly training colleges, so as to prevent the training of bad teachers. In a momentary obeisance to common sense, it does at least suggest that additional teachers be recruited from “other walks of life.” It then goes on reeling down the empyrean halls of cloud cuckoo land to some destination not obvious to this mere mortal.

“The Tractor and the Plough” At the beginning of this war, Europe faced a general agricultural crisis. Peasants on small plots were squeezed by large estates. Yields per low, and farming unprofitable. A higher income makes possible a shift to higher protein, higher fat foods and more fruit and vegetables. In Germany, this process went wrong in the 1930s, with wheat production expanded on unsuitable land to provide the preferred grain, pushing down productivity. A way must be found to push it forward again.

Quintals per Hectare/ percentage employed in agriculture
29.8 (20)
14.7 (47.6)
29.7 (35.0)
13.1 (73.1)
26.6 (17.1)
11.3 (76.2)
21.2 (29.5)
11.3 (80.9)
17.0 (38.3)
10.3 (80.0
16.0 (35.7)
10.2 (76.2)
Highly industrialised countries, with well developed cooperatives, have the highest yields. Except Germany, which it is supposed, is a result of policy maintaining wheat production on unsuitable soils. War mobilisation has also cut production. Industrialisation will increase productivity, with tractors. Germany should stop trying to be autarkic.

Notes of the Week

The Commonwealth premiers are talking, this week. (Last time, you will recall, they were talking about talking. Next, they will be talking about what they talked about,  I imagine. Or the Invasion, which cannot come soon enough. Perhaps it will even knock the American election out of the papers for a week or two.

The paper is provisionally pleased with the homebuilding scheme, which, I note, aims to deliver houses at £550 exclusive of land, which the paper takes to be quite reasonable. Ha ha ha ha! “Exclusive of land.”

Speaking of… The paper notices that many rural cottages have been built for farm labourers, lately, and, as they are far too large and elaborate, will be difficult for labourers to rent in the long run, as farm wages are low. It is especially regrettable how, before the war, farm labourers were squeezed out by urban workers, who could afford the rents. Should this happen again, the situation will arise in which there are no farm labourers, because they cannot afford to live anywhere, and there is not anything anyone can do about this. Nothing.

Spain is being neutral more.

Greeks are excitable. Labour is excitable. Local politics are in the news. A farm policy is feared that, by allowing farm profits to rise, fails to take into account the importance of good, cheap food for consumers. For then consumers will  not be able to afford food, and they will all starve, and nothing will be able to be done. Nothing.

Poles are excitable, and Stalin’s May Day Order confirms that the Red Army will continue to advance across the Russian border, if that had been in doubt for anyone. The paper summarises the latest report on national vital statistics of the Registrar General. The crude birth rate per thousand has risen again last year to 16.7, the highest rate since 1928. It is expected, on the basis of a slump in marriage rates, that this rise will be of short duration. Indeed, the proportion of the population at marriageable ages is the lowest ever. Fortunately, the death rate continues to fall, and so there was a very slight gain of 181,000 in population on a basis of 41 million. Another way of calculating this suggests that every woman alive in Britain today is going to have, on average, 0.903 female children to carry on the race, up, at least, from a historic low of 0.747 in 1933.

“Tax Troubles” Some people need tax relief. And by this, the paper does not mean factory girls or families with young children, who can always adjust their spending, but  more the “genteel poor,” who are poor by reason of fixed income, “commitments” and “established standard of living.” If I maintain a country estate, a minimal stable and hunting pack, and just the smallest little townhouse in London, and have no money at the end of it, am I a member of the “genteel poor?” More importantly, do I take the paper?

American Survey

The paper has read those nice articles in Fortune about “194Q,” and drawn as its main conclusion that the $2 billion out of $165 billion national income likely to be invested abroad is, uhm, something about it vaguely menacing Britain’s return to peace and prosperity, somehow? Though, to be fair, yet more boilerplate talk from Eric Johnston on the subject of free enterprise and anti-monopolies is cited, and one might conclude that Washingtonians need to be more careful about how much sun they get.

“Government Aid” William L. Batt, vice-chairman of the War Production Board, thinks that America should have a peacetime policy of importing vast quantities of strategic materials and of stockpiling them in national reserves in case of emergencies.

American Notes

The paper notices that Governor Dewey will be the Republican candidate, and, what is more, in a recent speech he did not even rave and speak in tongues, as one might have expected, on the grounds that he is an American Republican, and Colonel McCormick is an American Republican, and so Governor Dewey might be secretly as mad as Colonel McCormick.

“Civilian Supply” Covers the recent order freezing work forces in the civilian sectors at current levels pending the defeat of Germany, and its subsequent revision to allow some plants to expand production, if they are in areas with no critical war production going on and do not employ scarce skilled labour. The paper is not sure that it approves, given the shortage of Service manpower.

“A Post-War Military Establishment” Governor Dewey has no plans to cut the strength of the armed forces below what is reasonable. Peacetime conscription is likely, due not least to the “benefits it provides to trainees.”

“Magna Carta in Chicago” Mr. Sewell Avery’s anti-union action at Montgomery Ward has escalated remarkably since last I wrote, Reggie. The paper notices it here. The Army was actually sent in to run the department store briefly. (The officer in charge shared some amusing anecdotes on a western swing the other day, renewing acquaintances made in Buffalo.) The paper expects that this will be a campaign issue, as McCormick’s Tribune might as a result say nasty things about the President. This, it strikes me, is a possibility. Whether the average reader of the Tribune notices that the paper has a new reason for Roosevelt-hating is another question. The paper thinks that Tribune readers take it for the comics for the most part, anyway. (And "imbibe its subtle poisons through them.")

The World Overseas

“Poles, Ukrainians and Jews” are excitable. I should not make light. The paper estimates that two-and-a-half million Polish Jews may have died in German “slaughterhouses.” Though that makes this whole “desertion” thing seem even more absurd; although so is the fact of a Polish Army, over-officered and under-trooped, bringing in both Jews and Volksdeutsch to serve under the generally rich and upper class Poles who escaped in 1939.

Germany at War

“Food Tactics” Germany is not suffering from a food shortage, and probably won’t.

Letters to the Editor

The occasional feature is back, and it amuses me to attempt to discover just why. There is a letter on Irish neutrality, which in spite of a title that implies that it is connected with events of this century, turns out to be about Irish “oppression” of the Church of Ireland, implicitly calling for British intervention. Yes, Mr. Savory, that could certainly happen. Perhaps General Quesada could lead the invading air forces! More sensibly, one H. W. Singer suggests that tinkering with depreciation allowances is unlikely to affect the current state of obsolescent manufacturing equipment, considering how generous current allowances already are. It is more likely, he suggests, due to  lack of credit facilities. On the evidence, it is the depreciation issue, but, who knows? Perhaps the paper has decided to back the Ascendancy.

The Business World

After surveying national finance, the paper moves on to the recent proposal for ..more generous depreciation allowances to deal with the obsolete technology of British factories.

Business Notes

Stocks are up on weak volume, as, in spite of Budget goosing in the form of tax exemptions, everyone waits for the Invasion to make up their minds to buy. The amount and method of levying motor taxes is debated, lest British policy encourage designs with no export potential. The “oil-based chemical” industry is to be encouraged. Movement on gold markets as South Africa moves to reintroduce redemption (but not the gold standard) while Mexico moves to ban private gold imports and exports, ostensibly to keep bloody Axis gold out, but in fact more to press for a move to a world silver standard, for the obvious reasons. It is proposed that the overseas profits of British firms be Excess Profit Tax free. I heartily approve! And not just because all our profits will prove to be “overseas” profits! Moving money on paper sounds a great deal less nerve wracking than moving it in unmarked bundles of gold bars!

“Coal Supplies and Output” Output continues to be down in spite of the resumption of full production, and only two districts have earned their production bonuses. It is not much of an incentive if no-one can hit the target! In any event, we are gently encouraged to stockpile against next winter. (Especially since it is hard to reconcile claims that there was no lost war production against the fact of declining coal output other than “waste,” or, more plausibly, the accumulation of stockpiles last year at this time.)

Mr. Hawtry on “Futures” R. G. Hawtry, in a speech to the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, celebrates the existence of futures markets in various commodities as giving financial certainty and the ability to hedge against future price rises. Reading between the lines, I suppose that he thinks that the business might itself be profitable for Britain, given its existing large financial industry.

Flight, 11 May 1944


“Hamstringing German Reserves” The Air Ministry statement that transportation bombing has had enough results to prevent the Germans from making full use of their reserves is welcomed by the paper. The paper also argues with un-named German authorities who are surprised that there has been no bombing of coastal defences. Surprisingly, the paper concludes that the Ministry is probably right, and the Germans probably wrong.  “The Immediate Targets”  The paper supposes that the only reason why we are currently bombing German industry less is that we are bombing French railways more. 

“One Every Four Minutes” The First Lord, of all people, summarises a full statement on Allied aircraft production with the observation that the Allies are building a plane every four minutes. “The Final Blow” Admiral Cunningham and now Mr. Oliver Lyttleton have stated that the war can only be won by the Army, but the paper wants to add that aircraft will be involved!

War in the Air

The paper is impressed by the low-level pin-point bombing attack recently made on “an important house in the Hague.” Apparently it was full of very important documents that it was absolutely vital must not be destroyed, thought some Germans, and the RAF quitethe opposite. One imagines that there are those in Germany –and elsewhere-- who should like to make their own arrangements with the RAF.  It is never a sadder story than when some necessary document proves to have been destroyed in an earthquake long ago, and must be replaced with a brand-new one, backdated and filled out as directed! “Help for Tito” We are dropping guns on the Jugoslav partisans, and bombs on the Germans fighting them. Another of Essex-class has been launched, Bon Homme Richard. The bombing of Bucharest, gently intended to encourage Roumania to surrender more, is described again in a long paragraph that also fits in the bomber offensive, the 1940 “Blitz,” and something something Mosquitos. 

“Preparation” Perhaps you have heard that we are contemplating an invasion of France? Because we are! And then the Russians might attack too.

Here and There

Canada has trained 100,000 aircrew for the United Nations. The Derby chapter of the Royal Aeronautical Society recently had its first meeting. The meeting resolved that Rolls-Royce engines are the cat’s meow. Haile Selassie gave the RAF 300 ounces of gold as a token of appreciation for services rendered. In a perfect world, this would be gold paid to the emperor by Hawker Siddeley, but so far the Abyssinians are in our “rain guns from the skies upon them” list, not our “sell them guns” one. The time will come, though, and the Lion of Judah is clearly prepared. 

Flight is hiring. New York City is thinking about having a helicopter port. “Looking Well Ahead” Doctor Smith-Rose, in a recorded address to the Silver Jubilee session of the Institute of Electrical Engineers, forecast a future day of trans-Atlantic air flight service by pilotless aircraft controlled from land bases.

THE EDITOR, “British Helicopters,” is a five page account of helicopter experiments from the golden days before the war.  Arthur Tedder took a well-publicised flight in one of them, so clearly there’s something there, even if the pictures suggest a senior shop project.

Studies in Recognition

This week, telling the Curtiss AT-9Jeep from the Beech AT-10 Wichita from the Cessna T-50 Bobcat from the Airspeed Oxford. Something about too many types for production efficiency?

Behind the Lines

The Quisling regime in Norway has started an official aviation periodical. A Swedish correspondent in Berlin thinks that the German Air Ministry has admitted by omission that their night fighter force is suffering. Finland urges fifteen year-old boys to join AA units. The Germans might have a new torpedo bomber. The Japanese are mobilising to build aircraft more. Bulgaria’s air force has been taken over by the Germans. I save on glue by not including a picture of a torn kite. The Germans are building airfields in Norway for very important reasons.

W. S. Farren, “Research. “ Mr. Farren, who went to Cambridge and fought in the Great War and worked at the Royal Aircraft Establishment in Farnborough before they got tired of his garrulous ways, was recruited to give this year’s Wilbur Wright Memorial Lecture to the RAeS, on the grounds that everyone who could make the basic point that aircraft have got better over the last twenty  years because of research in less than five pages or so is busy doing something else this spring.

“Flight Testing: Doyen of British Test Pilots Explains His Work: Importance of Mutual Trust Between Designer and Pilot” Every time I think that authorial attribution in this paper cannot get any odder, it gets odder. The doyen is Lankester Parker, by the way.

R.A.F.’s “Tough Technicians” The men of the Service Commando in Burma are called that by someone. Their mothers?


The major topic of conversation this week is whether it was the Air Training Corps or the Roya Observers Corps that leaked the existence of some or other plane to the press. (The Tempest?) “Draughtsman writes with a silly little explanation of the Townend Ring, A. H. R. Fedden (the very same) to explicate the need for 100 ton planes with six 5000 hp engines. There is also more correspondence on the subject of ATC officers’ caps, on the B-17 being better than the Lancaster, so too! There are also some vaguely sensible letters, notably about future educational certificates for draughtsmen.

The Economist, 13 May 1944
“The Labour Coalition” The fight between Bevin and Bevan (no, seriously) has the paper cautiously hopeful that the Labour Party will fall apart soon and be replaced by the Liberal Party. If that does not happen, it supposes that it would be nice if Labour holds it together well enough to keep the Conservatives under some kind of electoral discipline.

Poles are excitable.

“New Trends in India” Indian industrialists want a massive national plan on the model of Russian Five Year Plans to push development. Indian ecumenicals want to revive the Cripps plan and prevent a partition between Hindu and Moslem halves of the Empire, and think that the “Bombay Plan” will interfere with this. The Radical Democrats think that it is all about the rich getting richer.

“Road to Serfdom?” A Professor Hayek of the London School of Ecnomics has just published a book under this title which supposes that too much government control of the kind we have now will lead to a species of state serfdom. The paper reviews same, and, in a spirit of even-handedness, decides that it has both good and bad points.

Notes of the Week

“The Monetary Debate” International money matters were debated in the House. “A Parliamentary Success” The amendment to the Education Bill  calling for equal pay for female teachers is reintroduced into the new version of the bill tabled in the House. Latins are excitable. Commonwealth premiers are excitable. Russia is making trouble about the postwar composition of the International Labour Office. The paper is upset with a proposed new “Farmer’s Charter,” as it might lead to a rise in prices. (Though it does have some refreshingly acerbic things to say about platitudes about maintaining the fertility of the soil and the importance of “mixed farming,” both of which can easily become excuses for effective subsidy policies, in the paper’s view.) People are talking about civil aviation, the collection of “economic intelligence” in foreign parts, the situation in China, and the shortage of domestic help.

American Survey

“Labour and the Election” (By an American Labour Correspondent) Some American labour leaders (by which we mean Mr. Lewis. We always mean Mr. Lewis) are making noise about "flocking" to Dewey in the election, because, as the President has not done enough for labour, why not support the candidate who will do even less? However, actual labour voters will vote for the President. The upshot of three columns is that this might affect turnout and, thus, the composition of the next Congress.

American Notes

“The Road Back” covers the latest talks on reconversion plans. Still no agreement on proper support for laid-off workers, though.  Topping up unemployment insurance funds, or tax reliefs on severance pay set-asides?

“Hornet’s Nest” The paper’s opinion is that the Montgomery War matter was mishandled by the Administration, and may pay heavily for it in November. The thought is that it does not qualify as a war industry under the Anti-Strike Act, and so the Government is not legally allowed to take it over.

“Solid South” Anti-Roosevelt Democrats failed in primary challenges in Alabama and Florida. This is because the Democrats are still seen as the party of White Supremacy, in spite of the Administration’s support for Coloured emancipation, while fears about the President’s health have melted away, in spite of Dewey’s hammering away on the subject.

“The Hyphenates” The Russian-Polish situation exercises Polish Americans, and some are thinking about turning to the Republicans.

The World Overseas

“French Faith in the State” Is an alternative to faith in the “Hundred Families,” supposed to be a bunch of anti-republic collaborationists, as well as having too much of France as their personal property for the country’s own good.

The Business World

“The Motor Industry’s Choice” The industry must do things to seize the possibilities opened up by the postwar world. Mainly in the lines of producing “big, cheap cars” for export. It involves tax and duties policy.

Business Notes

The stock market is in a fey mood over the Invasion. Uncertainties attend conversion rates for the “invasion Franc.” This will also be a problem elsewhere in Europe, and the paper also notes American experience with the “Hawaii Dollar,” a currency originally issued for circulation in Hawaii only, supposedly so that dollars captured by the Japanese could be readily distinguished, but, obviously, actually intended to prevent capital flight and corruption, are now being used throughout the Pacific at an exchange rate of 20 Japanese Military Yen to the Hawaii dollar. The paper notes that since the Hawaii Dollar circulates at parity with the US dollar, the Yen-sterling exchange rate is 3d versus the prewar 1s 2d.

“Report on Transport” Freight tonnage miles are up substantially across the country over prewar days, and passenger miles are down less than might be expected. Train loads are up 120%, which would end to suggest massive wear and tear, although this goes unmentioned. The paper is appalled that the six directors of the Lanport and Holt Line will receive £150,000 in compensation in the acquisition of their firm by a rival.

“Rebuilding Merchant Fleets” Is happening, but the paper is concerned about financial aspects. Specifically, stock prices suggest that substantial reserves have been set aside for the purpose, but cannot discover what, and where. The paper is, I assume, feigning naivete. Or perhaps our competitors have failed to grasp the possibilities of this world of ours. Though I rather doubt it.

“Women in Engineering” Equal pay for equal work proceeds. Mr. Jack Tanner, of the Amalgamated Engineering Unions, proposes that increased technical skill should be the basis of increasing wages and increasing profits in the industry. “The industry should pursue a high wage policy and be profitable.” This does rather imply that female labour should become more skilled, rather than that female labour should proceed from dilution of skilled labour. What a curious thought this is: use increased pay to motivate labour to achieve greater training standards. One wonders if this idea of using higher pay to motivate labour might have applications in other areas in the economy, such as coal mining, teaching, or farm labour! I should write the paper to suggest this.

“Debate on Electricity Supply” State or local monopolies or private enterprise? Well, I am sure that this will be sorted out directly.

“Postwar Inflation in the United States” Mr. Mariner S. Eccles, Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, sees sharp postwar inflation in the United States as a result of the accumulation of savings and a shortage of things to buy. As a remedy, he calls for high taxes now to reduce the savings overhang. Postwar, he wants to see the state continue to rely on income taxes, as these depress consumption less, and a maintenance of consumer demand through social insurance. 

And now for the monthlies...

Aviation, May 1944

Down the Years in Aviation’s Log

25 Years ago  today, Lt.Cdr A. C. Read’s Curtiss NC-4 seaplane was on its way from Harbour Grace, Newfoundland to Plymouth, England, in stages. Hawker and Grieve, attempting Ireland-Newfoundland, have to put down at sea and are picked up by a Danish steamer. US Army airship A-4 lands passengers on the roof of a Cleveland hotel. Lt. Roget and Capt. Coli of the French army fly nonstop from France to Morocco, 1116 miles in 11hr f50 minutes.

15 Years Ago, Elinor Smith of Freeport, N.Y. breaks the female air duration record at 26 h 21 min. “Curtiss-Robertson” factory turns out 16 a/c weekly. Army LB-7 bomber flies nonstop New York-Dayton and back, refuelling in the air twice. Army sends air expedition to Alaska, Rickenbacker announces million for an Allison engine plant, Navy opens 1 year ground course at U California.

10 Years Ago TWA incorporates and American announces transcontinental sleeper service between Dallas and Los Angeles.

Line Editorial
“Invasion and the Final Challenge” Junior points out that even though America has become great without aggression or tyranny, its greatness now requires invading Europe, crushing autocracy and “removing causes of aggression.” Americans may have seemed “soft” to the architects of Pearl Harbor, but we are actually inherently virile because we are free! The battle of production has been won! Every American has contributed! And then, when peace comes, we must contribute further, by eschewing “foreign ideologies” in favour of bracing, virile, freedom. Also sound economic policy, maybe?

Aviation Editorial Leslie Neville thinks that “The Critics Stand Refuted: And Sound Engineering Will Keep Them That Way” Back in October of 1942, some people, to name no names (Alexander Seversky!) thought American planes were terrible! But they aren’t! So there, you nameless critics! (Alexander Seversky!) A certain pilot we know, who went out to war, fresh from “football field or varsity crew” as a “legal killer” has come back a year later “from a theater where quarter is neither asked nor given,” with lots of ribbons on his chest. His Group has practically won the war single-handed, which would obviously not be possible with “no-account” or “obsolete” planes. Nope, no way at all. But this is not the time to rest on our laurels! “Papa Heinkel, "Wily Messerschmitt” and “Herr H. Focke” still have one last out to throw. Back in the mid-war, the fact that the Germans had frozen research and development gave us a chance to achieve qualitative superiority. Now the shoe is  on the other foot. We are freezing quality, while the Germans have gone back to basic research. We must never relent, never rest!”

I know, gentlemen. I find myself marking time with the postponement of the invasion, too. It really is a temptation just to throw a carbon in the typewriter and type out the contents of my dictionary. Unfortuantely, I have LSTs to expedite.

John Foster, “Here Are Your Markets” In the postwar, rich states with lots of people will buy more planes than poor, unoccupied states. This installment establishes that there are states of both kinds on the Atlantic coast. Stay tuned next month, when we will learn if there are similar contrasts in the Mississippi valley!

J. L. deCubas, “Now, ‘Packaged Airports” Westinghouse has prefabricated kit to get your local airfield off the ground today! By which is meant, buy our power plant and we’ll throw in some knockdown buildings free.

Captain C. H. Schildhauer, USNR, “A Ballot for the Flying Boat” Captain Schildhauer puts some carefully selected data on charts to show that, postwar, flying boats will rule the skies and compete with submarines to see which can dive furthest! Although submarines will come back up again.

George D. Ray, “I Saw Russia’s Air Power” Planes were involved. Russian planes are cheap, disposable, wooden coffins. On the other hand, the prevalence of low level combat and forward area airfields makes things safer than they would otherwise be. Also, Russians like our trucks and P-39s. Which says it all, really.

E. E. Lothrop, “Keying Market Research to the Aircraft Industry” Word. Another word. Word word word word. Am I done yet? No? Okay, here’s some numbers cribbed from the business pages: National income in 1943 was $147 billion, up from 97.5 in 1934. A lot of the increase was probably in wages and salaries, given that the 1943 figure shows that 75% of national income was in that form, and the figures from 1934 were probably such as to justify my random speculation. Obviously, the fact that people had more money in 1943 will have an impact on aircraft sales in 1947! For sure, if coincidence counts! Guys? Hold a seat for  me at the local? I still have 26 column inches to knock off before I can get out of here!

Chester S. Ricker, “Design Analysis No. 6: The De Havilland Mosquito” It is hard to imagine that a wooden airplane points the way forward for aviation (although the detailed aerodynamics are often remarkable), but it is pretty clear to me that plywood of the strength-to-weight characteristics of the Mosquitos points the way forward for plywood! This is why I have clipped the article and sent it on to  you. The main fuselage is a balsa-plywood sandwich with 0/437” balsa compressed between two 0.062” spruce or birch three-ply skins. Since balsa differs between 6 and 30lb/cub. ft, the wood must be carefully selected. Structural material for the Mosquito averages 9lbs/cub. Foot. Straight 3 ply birch is used in noncritical fuselage areas, some with transverse grains in the plys. Fabric-reinforced Bakelite is used in joints to prevent compression of the softer wood at the join. Bulkheads are composite pieces, with an inner skin of 3-ply 0.12” spruce, laminated spruce glued on to it, sometimes as “blocks.” The fuselage is then covered with Mandapolam, a special aeronautical fabric, and then doped and painted. Wing pick-up members are 0.4” laminated spruce. The main wing uses solid Douglas Fir stringers, plywoods of the already noted types, more Bakelite packing metal fixtures (there are some) in the inner structure. The all important wing skinning is where past plywood planes –and Russian types—have fallen down, being excessively heavy and thick, and still given to flutter. Careful use and design of stringers is the most important thing to note in overcoming this potential problem, but wing ribs use two 0.187” 3-ply birch sides with hardwood (walnut, ash, but also spruce and birch) stiffeners. Other web ribs have 4 ply 0.0625” web. I have heard rumours of composite plywoods containing both traditional carpentry hardwoods and softwoods, but I see no confirmation here.

More briefly, the secret of the Mosquito’s performance is, above all, careful design. That given, very thin veneers are also important, and so is the composite construction using Bakelite and fabric (and metal fixtures) as well as the more celebrated plywood.

Monroe A. Maller, “Methods for Determining Airfoil Pressure Distribution” Put two-dimensional test sections of the proposed foil in a wind tunnel. Measure. Be careful about where in the wind tunnel you put the model. Do lots of tests. Here is some calculus by which I reduce the problem (approximately) to plugging your numbers  into a simple algebraic equation.

“From Billet to Blade” Chevrolet and Frigidaire, now not making cars or fridges, are instead making Hamilton Standard propellers! The Chevrolet plant has gone in for a 3000ton Wood accumulator-served hydraulic presses. Forge working of ingots held at 720F for 3.5 hours in an adjacent furnace increases their tensile strength from 39,000psi to 55,000psi. Blades not requiring forging are instead made in a Duomatic lathe, then heated to 850, then swaged, then forged by a 35,000lb Erie steam hammer., prepared with saws and presses for fittings, then heated up again, then quenched, or as they say in the industry now, “precipitation heat treatment.”
Frigidaire takes over final production machining, as they have “assembly line” fittings to speed the work. For example, a single pass on Frigidaire’s Hall planetary contour miller creates a hold point to clamp for all subsequent operations. Machining is crucial to achieve blade balance, which is done in a “draft preventer cage.”

It is fascinating to know that Frigidaire and Chevrolet are cooperating so closely on such a highly machined product. One wonders what it means for the postwar "Cold war." Obviously very little for domestic refrigerators, a product which has little in common with airscrews save in being made of aluminum. Although I suppose that the coolant must be recirculated by propellers....

C. J. Breitweiser, “Approach to the Problem of Radio Precipitation Static” Mr. Breitweiser, of Consolidated Vultee, discusses antenna arrangements to reduce disruptive static in rain. “Such devices as radium-tipped discharge rod, ultra-violet generator, high polarizing potentials on the discharge, and creation of secondary particles have been considered” to replace the traditional trailing wire as a means of discharging static buildup. Breitweiserr thinks that FM might be a way to go in the future. Traditional loop antenna work, but noise-limiters in circuit have a ways to go before they are there.

Richard G. Smith, “Graphic Simulations in Computing True Airspeed” What engineer does not love the idea of drawing a picture to avoid mathematics and solve a problem that turns out to be more complicated than it looks? It really is the best thing ever.

“Precision Angle Plages ‘Bypass’ Trigonometry” Second best thing after using neat toys to avoid mathematics!

R. W. Feeny, “Analytic Geometry for Speedier Wing Lofting” But once your hopes of using drawing instead of numbers are raised, here comes Feeny of Northrop to make you put them back in.

“Equivalent Charts for Aircraft Plumbing Fittings: They Speed Standardisation at American Airlines” And fill out the page requirements quite nicely. There’s twenty pages of charts showing American’s equivalent fittings!

Robert W. Kinzel, “Looking Ahead to Air Cargo Markets” Planes will fly valuable cargoes after the war. Especially when speed over distance is a factor. There is a tinge of evangelisation to the article, though. At one point Kinzel notes that easier paper work is an advantage of air transport! Do not worry, Mr. Kinzel. The paperwork burden will catch up.

John S. Miller, “’Peashooters Should be Troubleshooters, Too” Lieutenant Miller (I suspect the "legal killer" in Neville's column) thinks that pilots should be a factor in the maintenance effort. They should tell the mechanic if a bit comes off, or the plane starts making funny noises, or if it crashes into the ground at high speed.

“Airport + Resort=New Business” It is hard to argue with the idea that some resorts will take an advantage from having an airfield. Presenting a ski hill at Blairstown, New Jersey as an example of this seems dubious to me. Surely the whole point of flying from, say, New York to a ski resort is to get somewhere more suited to skiing than the Poconos? It is not as though Lake Placid were some gruelling intercontinental flight away!

Aviation News

“Launch Initial Postwar-Air-Policy Parleys; Peacetime Private-Plane Market Gaged” I note the lead article in this months’ news digest here. Many people at many levels are talking about talking about civil aviation at many venues. But certainly not about aircraft production totals. At least, not on the front page.

Colonel Lucius B. Manning, former Vice-President of American and director of Consolidated, died in an air crash last month, while Inglis M. Uppercu, tireless aviation promoter best known for his association with Vincent Burnelli, died at home last month.

Reynolds has produced a new R-301 aluminum alloy that is as strong as structural steel. Civilian school aid to the Air Force is being rapidly run down. All 64 Army primary schools will be closed by the end of the war.

The Army says that the P-51 is now the world’s fastest plane, while the Navy just activated eight squadrons of Liberators. 50 AAF bombers have returned to base with shot-away control cables thanks to their Minneapolis-Honeywell autopilots, says Minneapolis-Honeywell.

Blaine Stubblefield’s Washington Windsock reports that we’ve been bombing the enemy, and will find out how effective it was after the war. Also, the Truman Committee is totally wrong about the B-26 being a piece of crap with a rapidly declining production rate. Even though it has already been discontinued at one of the two plants that makes it. There is an explanation that still makes the Truman Committee wrong, somehow! Mr. Stubblefield is entirely unimpressed by British “6 ton, or is it 10-ton bombs by now.” Public reaction to high casualty rates in pilot training is all wet. They can’t learn to fly unless they’re dying all the time! A lady of Mr. Stubblefield’s acquaintance proposed that we should send over a formation of bombers “the size and shape of flower Nippon,” which would, all at a signal, drop their bombs at once. “Everything would be destroyed, the land would be plouwed up –and fertilised with dead Jappos, ready to start farming. Wonder if the War Department is listening.”
Yes, Mr. Stubblefield, they are. And they want you to know that if you really want to stop drinking, there is help available.

Construction continues on Lockheed’s new 3.5 million modification centre for the Navy. Britain’s most handsome man, Geoffrey Smith, is coming to America to melt on dreamily about jets or some such.

America at War: Aviation’s Communique No. 29

The Army Air Force is large! The German air force is fighting! “Presumably,” German engineers are doing a better job of fortifying the coast of France than they did beaches south of Rome. An attack on the Philippines “soon” would surprise no-one.

Aviation Manufacturing

Here we are: 9,118 a/c, new record, were built in March. Labor turnover is up, from 2.82 workers in January 1942 to 4.31 in January 1944, but will not stay this high. Innumerable labour-saving devices ease the blow. “Report Company Achievements” notes that Boeing set a new production record for 4 engined bombers recently. Immediately following, the paper notices that United modified a record 3,500 B-17s since early 1942, while Continental has done 1600. Allison has recently completed its 50,000th engine.

Transport Aviation

Talking about talking; McCarren bill proceeds in Congress; airlines upset that they cannot get planes, nor answers from the Administration about when that might change; various interests interested in “feeder” air routes.

British reveal details of Sabre, Griffon, Tornado, “Tempest.” Not actually true, on that last, so this counts as revealing an aircraft on the secret  list, as we’ve heard elsewhere. Brabazon Committee report summarised.

Fortune, May 1944

In this number, the paper’s pollsters turn their attention to management.
First, they are optimistic. More businessmen think that prospects for their business are better after the war than the same, and far more than think it worse. But it is restrained optimism:

Size of National Income
Two Years after the War
Five Years after the War
Between $80 and $110 billion
Between 110 and 140
Between 140 and 170 billion
Over 170 billion

Notice a suspicion that the national income will be lower in five years than in two. That is fairly qualified optimism! 49.6%, all together, thought that national income would be either below 110 from two years out and onwards to five, or would have declined to that rate by year 5. Most in the executive offices think that government agencies will need to take the lead in the postwar wind-down, although 38% think we should just set a date for the end of Government controls and go for it. Fully 66% of managers think that government is not responsible for maintaining full employment. Almost everyone thinks that business and government should do something to reduce the impact of postwar layoffs. Most think that foreign trade will have direct or indirect benefits for their company.

In politics, 56.9% prefer Dewey, 29.0% Willkie, 8.2% Roosevelt, 5.9% MacArthur. (In the South, it is Roosevelt 9.4%, MacArthur 10.5%.) The sun may be going to their brains, but this tends to support my belief that the paper, and its ilk, include MacArthur’s name on lists like this mainly so that we can enjoy a good laugh at the expense of the congenitally insane.

Finally, where would you recommend that a young man look to make his start in business?

Foreign Trade
Household appliances
Radio Manufacture

It appears that finance is not very interesting to anyone except financiers, and electrical engineering does not even rate compared with "Chemical."

Mr. J. F. Gilfillan of Westmount, Quebec, writes to query the idea that in “194Q,” national income will be $138 billion, national product $165 billion. Where will the business come from? The issue here is not business, he thinks, but consumption, and increasing consumption is the province of government,  not of business.

Farm Column By Ladd Haystead

Farm country has woken up from a long winter spent dreaming by the fire of the happy day when famine returns to the land and the farmer is taken seriously again. Consequentially, Haystead has something substantive to write about, making him far less interesting. There are no new Presidential tickets to report, instead an attempt to discern whether farms are long on livestock, or whether they should begin to “reconvert” now. If not, in the absence of price signals, how will they know when to do so? As I have said before, the silver lining in the clouds over the mutton industry is that at least we know that we need to reconvert. Unless and until famine does indeed begin to stalk the land, that side of the family business continues to wind down, and the question remains the economical use of the lands freed. Going over to beef cattle does not make much sense of cattle herds are thinning out, too, and dairy cattle tend to require more water. If only I could believe in “Cousin H.C.’s” vision of subdivisions of single-family houses for as far as the eye can see. Though I do imagine that he is right for the Santa Clara Valley at least .

Business at War

The paper dwells on the paper shortage for a page and a half. Paper conservation campaigns interfere with paper reclamation campaigns!

There are still 9.3 million horses and 3.6 million mules on farms in the United States, which makes horseshoes a surprisingly large business. The industry looks forward to a gentle postwar dotage. There is a watch shortage, notwithstanding the continued import of Swiss watches via Swiss flag ships operating from Lisbon. Prices have gone up, and Switzerland has accumulated a significant US dollar surplus
Trials and Errors

It is the merry month of May, and time for Mr. Janeway to talk about –the Presidential election! (Actually, the dateline is “New York, March 30, 1944,”  but what is a month for a story like this? This week’s column title is “A Solid Midwest Outweighs the Solid South –And California May Yet Decide.” California decided the 1916 election for Wilson, and it may happen again. After all, the 1940 election was surprisingly close. The President only won by 4.9 million votes, so a swing of no more than 2.5 million votes would have given it to Willkie! The higher math, ladies and gentleman. “A switch of just 1%” might have lost the President New York, New Jersey and Illinois, hence the election. So if the election is close, and the President loses 25 electoral college votes because Connecticut, Massachusetts and –some other states—switch to the GOP, then he will need California’s 25 to win! More mathematics! What is even more interesting about this is that California is a very typical state now, in that it has war workers and Coloureds --or to concede the more vulgar Americanism in the interest of racial precision, Negroes, as California has always had "coloureds." 

The Job Before Us

War industry is already winding down even as our armies have most of their war before them. Now is the time to look forward to postwar and 194Q. Today, foreign trade in 194Q. It can make a significant contribution to America’s prosperity. If Americans are willing to import. Also something about global communications. The cable companies face tough postwar competition from air mail, so maybe the American cable companies should merge into a big national monopoly. This strikes me as a case of people worrying about something that no-one else is worrying about, leading me to wonder what they know that the rest of us do not? Or, to put it another way, are gentlemen reading gentlemen’s mail?
Joseph M. Jones, “Let’s Begin with Puerto Rico” Puerto Rico’s status within the American whatever-it-is is anomalous. Let us resolve it before lecturing foreigners on what they should do with their colonies.


‘”We Alone among the big Nations are going back to Free Enterprise. To Hold it here we must Crusade Abroad –And Stop Kidding Ourselves”

I prefer the hysterical full page ads,  myself.

Feature articles:

“The Comer’s Mill” An Alabama cotton mill is making money! That shows it can be done.

“Baron Keynes of Tilton” Is in the news. The paper explains why. He is quite bright. And also tall. And something about economics? Which has to do with the Versailles Peace Conference? Actually, my issue with the article is that it is a bit trivial to be dealing with such counterintuitive issues, and I include a clipping of a more serious engagement with the man’s ideas in this month’s package, Reggie.

“America and the Future” Is actually the main heading of a section with articles on Henry David Thoreau and the Andover school, neither of any great relevance, and on “Britain and the Continent” and “Buildings on the Farm.” Taken together, it is a rather odd conjunction.

So taking the salient articles at face value, a British scientist named Michael Polanyi explains that Britain stands for peace and “Puritanic tolerance, and the Continent for “violent rebellion.” So we are going to beat the Hell of the Continentals to stop them being so violent. Makes sense.

…I am not sure what to say about “Buildings on the Farm” the sub-heading notes that as many as $2 billion worth will be needed annually after the war, and this occasions investigation into new designs and building materials. An Illustration suggests aluminum dairy barns. Hard to see a problem with that! Smaller buildings might be send in pieces, by mail order. 

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