Saturday, August 15, 2020

Postblogging Technology, May 1950, I: Counting Down

R_., C.,
Shaughnessy, Vancouver,

Dear Father:

Well, it's definite. No Reds. Just like Uncle George said at Thanksgiving, the  typhoons arrived before the Communists were ready for anything like an invasion across the Straits. We've had the first of the season and the Reds have gone for Hainan. We cacn count on no more South Seas invasions till at least, the Fall. At which point, if Hainan is any guide, it'll be curtains for Peanuts and the Koumintang. It's just too much to expect the northerners to cross the mountains in the summer and span the waters in one winter, and this island will be brought beneath communist Heaven under the eyes of the Goddess of Mercy. 

Yes, I'm wasting a lot time around here shooting the breeze with practically everybody but Koumintang officers, including an old folk musician who is tickled that I want to hear the old Hakka songs that Uncle George butchers. I was going to share my version with Ronnie, but got the best glare you can give by trans-Pacific phone call, and fair enough when we're spending our retirement money on the calls.

So, around here, we haven't had a coup, we haven't had (much of a) purge, and we haven't had an invasion. We're all watching the invasion of Hainan, and everyone's calculation is about just when and how to jump. I've been firmly instructed to shut up and soldier (by Uncle George, not my CO, since I know you're worried). So all I can do is look forward to furlough in Hong Kong. I'm trying to wrangle a flight down to Singapore to see the other side. Ronnie's coming out in July, probably just before you, and there's rumblings that our subscriptions might be freed from the Post Office purgatory as soon as next month. 

I know Mother will complain that she's not hearing from me when I have so much time, etc. So I've sent her a big long letter, regular post, with snapshots of picturesque Formosa. And then another one, and . . At that point, I decided to stifle myself, as I've been warned (by Uncle George), that loneliness and inactivity can loosen the tongue and make you say things you regret. 

Your Loving Son,

Time, 1 May 1950


One writer is scared for the defence of Europe from the communist hordes unless we ship them plenty of guns. Another lives near Boston and doesn't like Boston papers. J. M Tomkins is appalled about a farmer who grosses $90 grand on his onion crop under price supports because that's a lot of money for a $3000/year schoolteacher and price supports are bad because Americans spend up to a third of their income on food. Several correspondents miss all the sparrows there used to be, back when there were horses everywhere. Everyone is happy about the Ted Williams article although there seems to be an argument about whether a picture in it is actually Ty Cobbs. Americans agree that the situation in Ireland is not ideal but not about why, or what to do about it, because it is mainly religion and that makes everybody sore. Supposedly. It's money, everybody! Religion is just a cover story!Senator Glen Taylor never reads Time and is upset about a bit about him. 

Our Publisher reminds everybody that Time's "morgue," or research library, is a big deal that employs 18 graduate librarians, including 4 men.

To show how it grows, the Marshall Plan has expanded to fill 225 folders since 1947, and Atomic Energy to 358.

National Affairs

"Eyes on Berlin" Dean Acheson invited Styles Bridges over for tea, and told him that there's trouble brewing in Burma, Korea, and, above all, Berlin. Sometime in May, the Commies are going to march a million youths right up through the western part of Berlin, and America has to be ready to stop them with "water-hoses, tear gas --and then, if necessary, machine guns." Well, if there's anything old Styles likes, it's machine-gunning idealistic German students, so Styles was all smiles, and has so far left off sabotaging the President's foreign policy for weeks now. That's bipartisanship!

"Steady On" Dean Acheson says that in the old days, the Secretary of State just wrote letters to foreign dignitaries, and that was the United States speaking, and that was that. But now it's all charges and counter-charges "rocketing past each other." Specifically, the Americans say that the Russians shot that Privateer down over international waters, and want punishment for the fighter pilots and an indemnity. The Russians say it was a B-29, not a Privateer, and that they caught it taking pictures over Latvia. Well, now the Swedes have found another life raft out to sea, which shows that the plane was shot down over the water, as the Americans said (not necessarily the same thing as international waters, though!) and that the Russians might have machine gunned the liferaft. The US is also fighting with the Czechs, accusing them of forcing Katherine Kosmak of the US Information Service to marry a Czech national and renounce her US citizenship, which sounds ver medieval. On the other hand, the Czechs want the US ambassador recalled for "inducing" Information Service employees to spy, and the closing of two US Information Service offices. The US will comply, and retaliate by closing the Czech consulate in Chicago. And if that's not enough, the four powers are fighting over appointing a new governor of Trieste. 

"Sunday Punch?" OPERATION SWARMER will be a combat drop by 32000 paratroopers followed up by a cargo plane supply lift, to show that a strategic island base can be captured from the air. The troops will come from the 82nd and 11th Airborne, both down to reduced strength, so this is all the "Sunday punch" that America can mobilise in the first hours of a new world war. Apart from extinguishing civilisation under a hail of atom bombs, that is. Time is very disgruntled that there is only enough air lift to drop the paratroopers a regiment at a time. It notes that America is spending $12.5 million on guided missiles this year, and $14 million on price supports for peanuts. But what about Peanut?

"Man of the World" The President flew down to Georgia and then Florida and back all in one day because he had to inspect some army and air force stuff and also has to hire 300 new top executives by next year, although he wasn't actually doing anything about that on this trip. Time just thought it would mention it, because it goes with the title. 

"Of Cells and Onionskins" Owen Lattimore and Louis Budenz were before the Tydings Committee in the Senate building this week, where Budenz told the Committee that although the Institute of Pacific Relations wasn't Communist, but was Communist-infiltrated by Frederick Vanderbilt Field and Philip Jaffe, "[who] are to my knowledge Soviet espionage agents," and that there was a pro-Communist conspiracy to say nice things about them in China Today, and that Lattimore was in the conspiracy. Budenz got a bit shifty after that, and Lattimore sent General Elliott Thorpe to the stand to defend him, but it's still Lattimore's word against Budenz, while Joe McCarthy was off to the American Society of Newspaper Editors to demand that Ambassador Philip Jessup's security clearance be taken away, and denouncing General Marshall for being "pathetic and completely unfitted" to be "Secretary of State." Just to even it up, Secretary Acheson compared McCarthy to the Camden mass murderer.  On a more entertaining note, Hebert Nelson, "the $25,000-a-year executive vice-president of the National Association of Real Estate Boards," famous for saying that the postwar housing shortage didn't exist and was just an "overconsumption of space," and that Senator Taft was a Communist because he supported public housing, is in trouble for writing a letter saying that democracy stinks, that women shouldn't vote, and that only direct taxpayers should vote. The Real Estate Board is upset that people have been going through Nelson's correspondence, but so what, because he's terrible. 

"Steamboat Comin' Roun' de Bend" Senator Paul Douglas has been holding up the rivers and harbors bill for two weeks trying to get rid of some wharves and this and that to the tune of $840 million in a $1.5 billion bill because they are "pork." Why should the government pay to dredge Detroit Harbour when Detroit Edison is the ony beneficiary? Americans just like hearing steamboat whistles. Almost a third of his savings come from cutting off the Pick-Sloan development. Since he was comprehensively outvoted on every single one of his amendments, you have to wonder whether this was a news story worth two and a half columns, but to that Time has two answers. First, it dug up some economist who thinks that the national debt might hit $267 billion; and, second, Senator Douglas is just so dreamy with his baby blue eyes and handsome jaw. Also, Governor Strom Thurmond has introduced a bill giving South Carolina voters a secret ballot, and the post office is cutting deliveries and firing or furloughing 10,000 workers to meet its $551 million deficit, and the President is still pursuing his "vendetta" against Roger Slaughter, who never done nothing wrong, honest, your honour, and anyway there's a groundswell for Ike, so Truman is out in '52 anyway. Only two years to go! 

The Chrysler strike continues, Jack Grant, a Los Angeles-area businessman tried to buy life insurance for his wife and three kids and then load them aboard a DC-3 along with a bomb so that he could escape bankrupty and marry the stewardess who was the mother of his three-year-old son. The bomb

From David Serlin, Replaceable You; Engineering the Body in Postwar America
fortunately caught fire on the ground instead. Hermann Sander's medical license has been suspended, and quadruple amputee (hands and feet) Jimmy Wilson is graduating from the University of Florida pre-law programme and marrying drama student Miss Dorothy Mortenson[?] this spring.

"The Voice of America: What It Tells the World" Voice of America explains America to the world.  Time really, really likes Voice of America, and gives it nice long cover story. 

Foreign Affairs

"Small Cheer" The new British budget is awful and austere and awful in spite of "small cuts" to the income-tax. 

"The Road Back" Fortune is going to have a very nice bit about "Britain's Road Back," which will be thoroughly enjoyed by any mice, flies, or house cats that might sneak into the quarantine room at the San Francisco General Post. (Which Ronnie says is probably just a bin bound for the city dump.) It will conclude that "Britain is on its way back," and that it is all down to British capitalism, who have overcome the roadblock of socialism. Time tells short versions of several Fortune anecdotes that prove that only private business can invest, because there's not enough diapers or something. In conclusion, even though Britain's economy is bad and terrible and has been going the wrong way for six years, it looks like it will end up in the right place, and if that sounds like pure magic, the magic was done by private business, and not at all by bad government policy. 

"Two Slaps" Germany (which is, you will remember, even more inefficient and unproductive and socialistic than Britain) is in trouble with the Allied High Commission, which recently vetoed two new laws passed in the Bundestag: a law making the civil service less open and democratic; and an income tax cut for high and middle income earners. Also, Hermann Kastner, who is the Deputy Prime Minister of East Germany, has a bad relationship with his ex-wife and his son from that marriage, which goes to show that communism is terrible. Austrian priest Father Franz Jachym has refused ordination as bishop of Vienna because . . . communism is bad? I can't believe that Time managed to work that angle. Also, Italy and Yugoslavia are having a snit over Triest and Italy thinks that America isn't supporting it because it  has a crush on Tito. India is a very odd place where very large numbers of people do things the Indian way at the same time and place, which is very healthy now because of DDT and chlorine even though it has bandits, some of whom rob from the rich and so on.
The things you learn: The Kongsi republics
Indonesia is still dealing with assorted rebellions 

As you will have heard, Hainan has fallen to the Reds. "[T]he immediate significance of Hainan's fall was that it furnished further proof that Nationalist troops still could not or would not fight effectively." It also looks as though the Philippine constabulary is a lot more effective at massacring peasant villages than stopping the Hukbalahaps, who, even if they don't win their revolution, are reducing Quirino's Philippines to a 'banana republic.'

The retiring chief of the New Zealand air force used to yell at everybody. And he gets to retire at 57! See? Stop telling teenagers to shut up. Yelling is good for you!


Wall Street is up, corporate profits are up, US Steel is going to have to defend itself to a Congressional committee again soon some more, Erleigh and Milne, the latest South African gold mine wwindlers went up before the magistrates in Johannesburg and got their wrists slapped to the tune of almost £200,000, so I hope they made at least that much selling worthless stocks! 

"A Decent Burial" Senator Fullbright wants to "bury" the RFC, and found a Texas banker to agree before his committee this week. I have to feel a twinge myself when I hear about former RFC New England regional director John Hagerty, who resigned his $10,330/year job to go to Waltham as president at $30,000 the moment that Waltham Watch got an RFC loan to reopen, and who is now back on the RFC payroll, at $10,330/year again, two months after Waltham finally closed down. A less dirty return is coming to Gordon Levoy, the film producer, attorney and part-founder of Republic Pictures, who stands to make a half-million this year for producing 52 fifteen minute movie shorts for Proctor and Gamble to run through TV's Fireside Theatre.  Once they'd run there, the rights reverted to Levoy, who sold them again to Columbia for $225,00 and a 50-50 split on future revenue. The money talks, ,so Gene Autry is going to make six half-hour westerns on the same principle, Bing Crosby Enterprises is going to put 44 half-hour shows through Fireside. So it looks like this lease-out arrangement is going to beat the "Phonevision" scheme in which first run movies were to be sent out to televisions "scrambled," and de-scrambled via a telephone hookup if you subscribed or paid, via your phone bill. Although since Phonevision hasn't been rolled out yet, I guess we'll see what we see. 

Science, Medicine, Education

"War of Nerves" Professor Perrin Long recently poo-pooed the whole idea of germ warfare, which has General McAuliffe on the war path. As you may recall, the Battling Bastard of Bastogne was recently appointed head of the Army Chemical Corps, because what a paratrooper doesn't know about chemistry can be written on some amount of paper in a period of time. Addressing a meeting of the American Chemical Society in Detroit, General McAuliffe hinted that America is working on new poison gasses which "would completely cripple an enemy's will to resist." The weapon in question is "nerve gas," which has "long [been] a subject of wild speculation among amateur military strategists." "Presumably it would be sprayed over enemy cities by planes in the same way that whole areas are sprayed with mosquito-killing DDT, paralyzing the whole population. Then the attacking army, equipped with protective masks, would march in and take over." Defence Secretary Johnson expanded: America is safe from germ warfare for now, but watch out for the "'programme of research and development in biological warfare [that] is being continued' at full blast."

"Bat Sonar" Dr. Donald Griffith of Cornell University has found a new way of working with bats that involves freeze-drying them until needed (I kid: he uses a humidified refrigerator to trigger their hibernation reflex). Thus he has been able to study bat sonar, which everyone talks about, and no-one does anything about. Turns out that bats use 120 kHz ultrasound pulses at two-thousandths of a second, 120 pulses to the second. They scan for returns by swiveling their ears. Although indetectable by human ears, the sounds are quite loud, and if we could hear bats going by overhead, they'd sound like fighter jets.  

"In An Iron Lung" Birdsall Sweet (32) died last week of "Acutre nephritis due to chronic kidney stones due to poliomyelitis" after eighteen years in an iron lung. We're so lucky that Vickie was spared that. Uncle George says that she's started running away from the pram to explore the building in the lower orchard, which drives Miss J. even madder than she already was, though that's Uncle George talking about an older woman, so, you know . . . 

"Is It Catching?" Most American doctors say that the cold is caused by a virus, but there's a "vigorous minority which vociferously argues the opposite." Last week, before a panel of the American College of Physicians meeting in the Mechanics Building, "prime 'rebel' against the accepted theories, the UNiversity of California's Dr. William J. Kerr," proudly owned the title and launched a "slashing attack" on the virus theorists.
"His relationship with the eminent chair of surgery was often fraught
with difficulty, but he directed the division of medicine with
creativity, pursuing his special interest in cardiology."
"Colds are afflictions, not infections," Dr. Kerr says. They're not infectious, he says. They're caused by getting cold, he says. He also doesn't believe in allergies. 

"Promise and Answer" Pfizer and Company announced a new antibiotic, viomycin, which seems to work against tuburcle bacilli that resist streptomycin, while the US Army Medical Department thinks that aueromycin might be a treatment for radiation sickness after tests with dogs exposed to radiation showed a huge improvement in survival rates. And Dr. Louis Portnoy of Manhattan's Mount Sinai has some advice in Fertility in Marriage. He thinks that the monthly cycle of body temperature, which reaches its lowest "about the time the ovum is released," is the best indication of fertility, so to get in the family way, do the family thing when the temperature dips lowest. Nonsense, replies Dr. Edmond J. Farris, who is just a physiologist, and not an M.D. In Human Fertility and the Problems of the Male, he recommends a blood test that can pinpoint the moment of release as closely as six to twelve hours. Dr. Farris is pleased to report that one of his male clients left a board meeting when the clock struck family-making-time-o'clock, and a woman who broke up a tea party for her scientific meeting of the autumn moon. Even more startling, he finds that in about two-thirds if infertility cases, it is the husband who is at fault. Up to 20 to 25% of men are "subfertile or infertile and will probably never become fathers." Emotional disturbance has nothing to do with it, hormones and vitamins don't help, but X-ray treatments of the pituitary glands do. Although a related story says that rats kept on "rich diets" start to become infertile after a generation or too, something for the rich folks to consider. 

"Disappearing Schoolhouse" One-room schoolhouses have been disappearing at a rapid clip, but there are still 75,000 of them left, nearly one-half of US schoolhouses, employing one-twelfth of teachers and enrolling one-sixteenth of schoolchildren, the US Office of Education reports. Out in Utah, Brigham City is in a tizzy over the Bureau of Indian Affairs buying an abandoned army hospital on the outskirts of town for a school for several hundred "Navajo schoolchildren from Arizona." Fortunately, the tizzy was eased when a delegation of city elders visited he Navajo reservation and determined that the Navajo were nice people, and by the arrival of George Boyce, who works for the Bureau, but is very nice and avuncular, and who can say no to an Uncle George? Also, Uncle George had $3.7 million in spending money to spruce up the school, which is enough to buy a lot of friends in a town like Brigham City. The arrival of a few hundred kids who had never been to school, seen a shower or a bed, eaten with knife and fork, spoken English, etc., also changed everything more. The school will have three programmes. Teenagers will get a five year course that will fit them to work as "truck drivers, straw bosses and cannery workers." The elementaries will get an eight-year course that will ready them to be "tailors, mechanics, etc."  Primary school aged entrants will get a normal educational curriculum. There is hygiene, painted walls, extracurricular activity, and everything is bright and hopeful for the 12,000 Navajos so far enrolled, although with 12,000 more to enroll, many more schools are needed. 

St. Olaf's, Quatsino: Parochial school, one room schoolhouse and residential school, all in one. 

"Armistice in California" University of California has a peace between regents and faculty over anti-communist oathes. Essentially, the regents have given in. (Faculty have to sign a contract stipulating that they not be Communists, instead of swearing a loyalty oath. The regents can sue in civil court if the professors break the contract, but not fire them.)

"Soon: Cleopatra" Time is taken with "Britain's only Latin newspaper, the Acta Diurna." It's brought out by Worcester Royal Grammar School's Latin department on a budget of  £100 and seems to make a profit on subscriptions of up to 9000 per issue at 6 pence, depending on how many 6 pences there are in a royal furlong. The trick here is that they don't need a reporting staff, because they're reporting the news from two thousand years ago, which boils down to retyping Julius Caesar.  Which sounds like a ridiculous gimmick to me. 

Press, Art, Radio and Television, People

The President is moving his weekly news conference out of  his office and into a conference room in the old State Department that seats 200 and doesn't have an expensive carpet with embroidered Presidential Seal for the Fifth Estate to spill ink on. Remember those dogs being treated with antibiotics against radiation poisoning? They're being taken from the Los Angeles pound, and the Hearst Press is having a fit over it. Time gleefully reports that word of a medical breakthrough has come out of this research has taken the wind out of the Examiner's sail, which furthermore is charged with misreporting what someone said. Just for fun, the Los Angeles Times has jumped into report on the "curious partnership" between anti-animal experimentation "fanatics" and "Communists and Communist sympathisers interested in sabotaging national defence . . . " Whee! On the same front, Time sends out a big love letter to New Leader, because it is a socialist-communist paper that hates Soviet Reds. Next week, it turns from a newspaper to a weekly magazine. Time gives us a full treatment of all its heroics over the years. 

Edvard Munch was a little crazy, which is why he painted crazy. Henry Clay Frick spent a half-gazillion dollars of steel money on Great Art to decorate his mansion, leaving it to his spinster daughter to turn the  manion into a gallery, the annoying next door neighbour's house into a library of coffee-table books, and then produce a twelve volume catalogue of paper made from Imperial yak-skin vest to describe everything her dad bought. Now that the ink is done being hand-ground by blind Peruvian monks, it is being printed in a special font especially invented to make angels weep, cast in the Netherlands (were they cast good), and turned into hand-press prints which are being swum across the Atlantic by hand-picked teams of virginal Kentish roses. It will be printed by 1952, maybe with some cheating along the way if they run out of those guys who screw the hand presses. 

The last paragraph is very important news and you should read it twice. 
The actual article is even more ridiculous because it's delivered straight. Wikipedia (italics mine)Henry Clay Frick (December 19, 1849 – December 2, 1919) was an American industrialistfinancier, union-buster, and art patron. He founded the H. C. Frick & Company coke manufacturing company, was chairman of the Carnegie Steel Company, and played a major role in the formation of . . .  U.S. Steel . . .. He also financed . . . the Pennsylvania Railroad and the Reading Company,[citation needed] and had extensive real estate holding . . . . a. He later built the historic neoclassical Frick Mansion (now a landmark building in Manhattan), and upon his death donated his extensive collection of old master paintings and fine furniture to create the celebrated Frick Collection and art museum. However, as a founding member of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, he was also in large part responsible for . . . the catastrophic Johnstown Flood.

 "Weak Timbers" Radio and television industry profits are up 10.3% over last year, but 91 of 97 television stations lost money and the average radio station profit was only $6700, showing that the industry has some weak timbers. Optometrist John C. Neill of Philadelphia's State College of Optometry says that TV causes 10% of the nation's eye problems and explains how far you should sit from your television, and stations in eight cities broadcast a British show this week so that Americans could get a taste of how the British do television, Cafe Continental was "brisk and light  hearted, " with yodelling, Gypsy music, French acrobatics and Isabel Bigley. British observers think that their dramas could do better. Time catches up with the giveaway shows, which keep on keeping on, and Groucho Marx, whose You Bet Your Life has crawled its way up from 75th place, tied with Roy Rogers, Country Fair and Dr. I.Q, to fifth place because Groucho is funny. 

Colonel Junior gave the Overseas Press Club a nice talk about his round the world trip where he learned them about important things such as that no-one in the world cares about Rita Hayworth or Ingrid Bergman, but no one can stop talking about Gussie Moran's panties. Which says more about the Littlest McCormick than it does about the world, I say. Ava Gardner isn't allowed to have a serious conversation because she's pretty. Dr. Sushila Nayor and Alben Barkley get column space because they said funny things that aren't actually funny. Gracie Fields is in the column because she says she doesn't say funny things any more. Sally Eifers says that Hollywood people give too many parties. Phumiphon Adundet is getting married as not-the-king-yet, because this is important in Siam. Emperor Hirohito's brother sent a fan letter to Al Capp. Mack Sennett has written a novel and Count Felix v. Luckner is off back to Germany after two months in America learning about democracy. General James Devereaux is running for Congress and Toscanini played Dixie for a cheering crowd in Richmond. He thinks it is a "very exciting" song. Prentice Cooper is off the market at 54, Joe Gould, Charles Coastas, William Alexander, Muriel Starr, Archbishop McNicholas, Warwick Deeping and Frank McNinch have died. 
Since you already know everything the Internet knows about Deeping and the novel where an Englishman
goes back to  Roman Britain, here's a link about Cyril Hume.

The New Pictures

Riding High is Frank Capra remaking his 1934 hit, Broadway Bill, and somehow doing it all over again. You will have heard in great detail because it stars Uncle George's beau, but Time loves it too. Charles Bickford plays Time's kind of man, but you can't romance that, so  Time saves its little crush for Coleen Gray.

Learning that Gray was a "conservative Republican who voted for Barry Goldwater" makes me feel better about reporting that her voice wasn't dubbed . 

The Reformer and the Redhead is a patchwork comedy" written by men who "never rejected a gag that popped into their heads." Time isn't impressed, but tries to save Marvin Kaplan from the wreckage. Captain Carey, U.S.A.presents Alan Ladd as his bobby-soxer fans like him. Everyone else will find the movie slow-moving and very resistable. 


Somewhere along the line we have failed to meet the middlebrow quota for the issue, so Books starts (STARTS!) with a poetry review. Richard Church has written enough poems for an entiure book, and they're very verbal, so Time invents the word "Vocalisthenics" and that is all the time I have for that. Looking out for Liza is a novel by Faith Baldwin, her 65th, and sounds a bit formulaic. Fitzroy McLean's Escape to Adventure is a "military diplomatic memoir" from the "most popular political figure in the United Kingdom." He's a Tory MP, you see. And he went for a walk across the Soviet Union back in 1937 or 1939 or thereabouts and saw "ancient Samarkand" and such places, and in general, etc. (At one point, the SAS, at another, Tito. Time loved it, and how often has Time been wrong this week?) Conrad Richter's The Town gets the Time-supplied headline, "Taming Ohio." I don't know what to say? Ohio even needs taming? It turns out that it is one of those historical novels that follows an entire town, and this is the one set in the period when the Ohio frontier was tamed. Okay! Finally, this month, the latest volume of Churchill's memoirs are out. Time liked it. 

Aviation Week, 1 May 1950

Industry Observer reports that American is buying the Sperry A-12 automatic pilot for two DC-6s and is pleased to report that the autopilot can't break the machine with excess control forces or overpower the human pilots. The Air Navigation Development Board has recommended shelving automatic GCA in favour of ILS, omnirange and distance measuring equipment until 1963, when the "ultimate" GCA arrives. Flight has revealed the details of the US' AN/ARR-3 sonobuoys, twelve of which are now carried on their Fireflies, the unlikely fighter-turned subhunter. Aviation Week's summary is so brief that it's basically gargling. The new production version of the B-47 will have drop tanks and additional internal tankage, extending its range and its takeoff weight, that last to 185,000lbs, or only three Liberators. A new and improved liquid-fueled rocket motor replaces the 18(!) JATO bottles of the old plane, giving 20,000lb thrust for takeoff instead of 18,000. Convair has deals with Indonesia and Ethiopian Airlines to take Convair Liners off their hands. The latest thing in landing indicators might be an aircraft sonar built into the landing gear that would tell the tower when a plane lands. The Canadians have bought two squadrons of Avengers to equip anti-submarine units on their carrier. Douglas is giving its A2D turboprop attack plane taxiing tests in the next ten days, hard on the heels of the Convair XP5Y-1, the similarity being that both have the giant T-40 turboprop. The C-97 Stratofreighter has an upper-deck cargo door and an increased payload, now quoted at 68,000lbs by Boeing. The upper deck is to be loaded by forklift. The Navy is ordering 50 Grumman AF anti-submarine planes, which will be the largest single-engined aircraft currently flying at 16,000lbs. 
A2D. The engine never worked. 

News Digest reports that American reports that American's transcontinental coach service with 70-seat DC-6sis an "unqualified success." Northwest's Anchorage-Orient service got a new lease on life with the Navy saying that its Aleutian stations are vital to the national interest and should stay open to refuel Tokyo-bound airliners.

Charles Adams, "Super Connie Leads new Transport Plans" Since it looks like jets are going to be here to stay, in the meantime the builders are trying to get the last gasp of performance out of their existing prop planes. Lockheer's Model 1049 "Super Constellation" has the edge on the Super-Stratocruiser in that it has actually been ordered, by Eastern, and so can be said to really exist. The Super Connie will be 18ft longer, have more powerful engines, and carry up to 92 passengers. The Air Line Pilots Association has warned that these new planes (Super Connie plus talk from Boeing, plus vague muttering from Martin, Convair, Douglas) might not be able to take the gust loadings they're going to get. Boeing's mutterings include a turbojet pod on the Stratocruiser to improve cruising speed to 360mph and takeoff weight from 142,500lbs to perhaps 165,000. It is also thinking about a turboprop version of the Stratoliner. (They both sound crazy.) 

Getting back to the Super Connie, it will cost $1.5 million fly-off, have a gross weight of 119,000, cruiser at 313mph at 20,000ft, up from 300, mainly thanks to the jet stack in the turbo-compound engine. It will have the same flying characteristics, but better view, sound protection, air conditioning, temperature control. Rickenbacker says that the Super Connies will get Allison turboprops in four to five years, allowing 92 passengers to fly New York-Miami in three hours. Lockheed allows that there are plenty of other improved Connie ideas coming down the pipe. Douglas says that the DC-6 could take turboprops no problem, and that it would increase its cruising speed by 75mph. 

And I am the Queen of Romania! 

Douglas also thinks that turboprops (Wright T-35s, and not those sissy Alison plants) cold go into its C-74 and fix its current "overtaken by a Boy Scout troop at a brisk walk" problem. If so, says Pan-Am, then that's dandy and they'll buy some at the right price. The C-124 could get same! 

Still waiting to hear about the 10,000shp Lycomings to go into the Spruce Goose. 

I stole this picture from Historynet which says that Eddie Rickenbacker forbade his pilots from calling it the "Connie," because it sounded effeminate. That's a tell, Rickie. 

"Higher Air Budget Victory Seen" It's an election year, so the Joint Chiefs expect to be splashed with money soon. Unfortunately it is all being spent on boring old planes and not exciting new ones. The Secretary wants some of the money to go to the Engineering Development Centre for wind tunnels, though.

"Air Transportability Gets a Test"

OPERATION SWARMER, that is. The USAF has 10,250 combat planes, of which 80% are near-obsolete WWII types. It has 22,000 planes in total, 9000 in storage, an officer strength of 51,000, and an "unrealistic" plan for attritioning old planes and absorbing new ones. SWARMER was an opportunity to think these problems through. (And see if the Air Force can lift an entire army.) The upshot is that it is quite possible that important lessons were learned, but, if so, Aviation Week isn't telling. 

"SAE Tussles with Jet Problems" A thousand attendees heard a lot of papers, many of which sound like rehashes, but I wish I was at Dixon Spear's talk on prop failures, which have been a big problem on the big new airliners and overshadow all this turboprop talk. The rebuttal is that since the prop failures had reasons, all the turboprop installations have to do is fix those problems, and problem solved. Well, that was simple! G. Geoffrey Smith was in town to tell us Yanks that we developed jet engines wrong by giving the first orders to steam turbine makers who didn't know from airplanes.

Cornelius Whitney is still out at Commerce, Finletter still in at Air Force.  Aviation Week went to Europe and saw some pretty planes

"Continuous Tube Fire Detector" Dittman Corporation has a fire detector based on Cymene, a volatile chemical that vaporises when heated, triggering the alarm. It is being evaluated at Wright Field, Dittman says. 

"Joint Group Studies Noise Suppression" You can tell when a problem is serious but there's no solution, because first they form a "working group" or a "Joint Group," and next you get "talking about talking about" stories, says Uncle George. They're talking about ear muffs and more insulation on testing chambers, so it looks like the old cynic is right. (Or he bit and infected me, like you always say.) GE has come up with a way to extend the life of graphite bushing by wetting it, but in a very modern way involving injections and thin films. 

"Computer Refinement" Bell Telephone Laboratories have brought computers closer to the human brain by developing one that can "detect its own mistakes." I don't know if that makes it more human, or less! It involves having the machine do the calculation twice (or I guess three times?) to find errors. The Navy's new Hydolube fluid is the best ever hydraulic fluid that is made with only chemicals produced in the United States and is non-flammable. 

New Aviation Products is big on a new "metal-base permanent lubricant" from Lockrey Company, a colloidal molybdenum suspension.  It gets quite the writeup. Much more exciting than Westinghouse's new AVR-89 voltage regulator, much less a new fuel bowser or a 'wet water' capsule from Aquadyne. If you didn't already know, 'wet water' is water with some soapish-kind of stuff added, which improves its ability to smother fires because of capillary action. It's not actually a capsule of water, but of their Pyrodyne product, which can be added to firefighting water in various ways. So the hookup can feed hoses and pipes or whatever. Kind of interesting, I guess. 

Unlike, say, yet another blurb about the Percival Prince. Die, plane, die! 

In airline news, various nonskeds and feeders and semi-cons in the usual places (Alaska, Australia) leads us to th eSlick Airlines C-46 cargo plane crash in Cheyenne. Who would ever have seen that coming? Turns out no-one told Slick about this "winter" thing that happens around Cheyenne, and the plane few into ice and wind and crashed. 

Letters is on about air transport troubles this week, with letters denouncing the rail anti-airlines ads from the trucking industry, and lots of praise for coaching. 

Time, 8 March 1950


Herbert Mayer, "who served on the German Military Government" is concerned that too many Americans are too Communistic without even knowing it. Walter Lehmann, on the other hand, finds the article in question, "Ideologies" to be propaganda that would make Goebbels proud. On the other hand, Dr. Paul Gallagher of El Paso thinks that Owen Lattimore was for sure disloyal. How can you be a loyal American if you criticise the Koumintang? Good question! Several chiropodists are upset that the article on gangster Charles Binnaggio compared him to same. Tom Lennon of Beverly Hills doesn't take the story about the salesman who got into trouble for following a housewife from room to room seriously. Time sure does! Ordinarily I think Time would be on Lennon's side, but I guess once you have a wife at home, you start taking these things a bit more to heart. Macmillan's denies rejecting Kathleen Winsor's latest manuscript because the royalty request was too high. They rejected it for other reasons. Time regrets the error and blames its source. Correspondents are generally quite pleased with the Rickenbacker story because they are not very good at reading behind the lines. (At least, Uncle George says that it is "obviious" that Rickenbacker has a "sugar daddy," but you know Uncle George!) F. Duran-Reynolds writes to object that hyaluronidase is not a cancer-causing agent, but Time defends its reporting on Rosalie Reynolds' research, which implicated naturally-occurring hyaluronidase as being associated with tumours. Harold Fleig thinks that Time should take flying saucers more seriously, while George Greene thinks that it shouldn't.

Time does not exactly hit a high note with a three-page article-ad about someone's foolproof system for buying and selling stocks at home

Our publisher shares a letter from Constance Gurd Rykert about the Foster Parents' Plan for War Children, catching the readers up on all the good their money has done for various Italian war children. 

The new Desert Inn, c. 1968
National Affairs

Unemployment is down, so that's good. "Gambler" Frank Costello is dropping by the Kefauver Committee to deny knowing anything about this whole "syndicate" thing, dressed in mirror-black shoes, a pearl-blue pin-striped suit and a nice necktie, which goes to show that gambling pays! The Committee is contemplating rules to make it pay less, which should fix all the problems as meanwhile down in Kansas City they're trying to get to the bottom of the assassination of Charles Gargotta, who is thought to have squealed on a gambling ring. And in Las Vegas, Wilbur Clark has thrown the doors of his brand-new, $4 million Desert Inn wide open.
Three-hundred rooms, a 35ft coloured fountain, and a whole lot of shady money from out Cleveland and Detroit way, to make it happen.

"The Sump Pump" It's an election year, so Congress is writing some cheques. Time covers the worst ones. Imagine if Congress couldn't just lard a bill with constituency spending and the members had to win primaries and elections by appealing to voters?
But even the Administration is doing it. Just last month, Louis Johnson was disagreeing with Eisenhower about the need to spend more on defence. This month, he is asking Congress for another $350 million. What's up? Well, China fell, Russia got the atom bomb, so the Navy needs new fighter bombers and airborne radar equipment, $50 flat for antisubmarine warfare. The Air Force needs jet bombers and all weather fighters, baby needs a new pair of shoes. 

"Waspons of the Future" With Congress in a good mood, Admiral Sherman popped over to the hallowed halls to ask for $350 million in new construction. Specifically, the time has come to stop talking about a nuclear submarine and build one. He also wants three experimental hulls. One to test the nuclear submarine's hull form, another to test out "closed cycle" machinery that carries its own oxidiser, and a 250t "baby submarine" for unspecified purposes. He also wants to convert 11 subs to snorkels, another 3 as "killer' submarines for hunting other subs, and one for minelaying duty. The Navy also wants a guided-missile cruiser conversion and an Essex-class modernised to carry heavier and faster planes. The new programme calls for 29 conversions in total and 111 new construction, although most of those are auxiliaries. The Army also wants something. Jumping Joe Collins just won't say what. 

"In the Dark" The Tydings Committee turned out a rare selection of Owen Lattimore-related witnesses, including Dr. Bella Dodd, who told the Committee that she used to be a big-time Communist and she never heard nothing about no Owen Lattimore; FBI informant John Huber, who was a no show but called Congress from a telephone booth in New York City to say that he'd blacked out on the day, Earl Browder, who also didn't know nothing about no Lattimore. Also not hearing about Lattimore, all four recent Secretaries of State. Fred Vanderbilt Field does know Lattimore, having worked with him at the Institute of Pacific Relations, but Fred points out that while he was a pinko at the IPR, Lattimore wassn't. Except that Field (and Browder) refused dto answer the Committee's questions in full, because they aren't squealers, and now Tydings wants them up for contempt of Congress. Also, Herbert Hoover expressed his opinion about communism (which includes Mussolini and Keynes) this week. He's against it. (Them.) Also, a Nebraska district court says that Communists can't get unemployment insurance because to collect you have to be available to work, and no-one will hire a communist in this country. 

"Ordeal by Altitude" the AFL's Building Service Employees Local 32-B is out on strike, which Time for a change thinks is funny because they represent the doormen along Fifth and Park, and without them the "matrons" have to climb the stairs and hail their own taxis. In related matron news, the good ladies of Scarborough are up in arms over a developer who is using the same ranch-house design on multiple lots. 

"'Superior Authority?'" A California court has thrown out California's Alien Land Act on the grounds that it conflicts with the Un Charter, which the United States has ratified. One reading of that is that the UN supersedes California law, which is clearly wrong. 


"May Day" May Day celebrations in Eastern Europe failed to see a million Communist Youth marchers charge the West Berlin zone boundaries and get machine-gunned down by occupation troops. Time is disappointed. But at least there were 64 B-29skis in the May Day parade, up from 22 last year! Marshal Tito also had a May Day parade, but he's the good kind of Communist. 

"All for Peace" The Russians are pushing ahead with an airfield construction programme in eastern Euorpe, including extending runways on old German fields to take a new generation of Russian jet fighter with a top speed of 560mph, and a supersonic one soon to follow; and laying new runways with concrete up to 24" thick to take the Tu-4, because, fine, "B-29ski" isn't it's real name. (Time isn't much better, calling it the "Tu-29.") In unrelated peace news, the 252nd meeting over the Austrian peace treaty just broke up because Communism is bad. 

"Test of Strength" Labour wins two confidence motions in the House of Commons and a by-election in  --Scotland, I think?-- extending their majority to five. Churchill meanwhile angles to seem reasonable by talking about a national government. 

"A Danger Scotched" Time is beside itself that a Communist was ever in charge of France's Atomic Research Commission, and is still beside itself that Frederic Joliot-Curie wasn't fired enough. (The Premier's statement didn't breathe brimstone, and Joliot-Curie's entire staff of no-doubt eager Fifth Columnists wasn't fired with him.).
The nose.. 
Really, Time?
Other troublesome French leftists don't include the union that represents the actors who dub Hollywood movies into France, because they include Paula Dehelly, and Time is offended for her. (It's a long story.)

A Third Try" Belgium is to have a third election in a year over the royal issue, tito is still a good Communist,  and Time found a good Communist who was very disappointed by the fact that American visitors to Ancona, Italy, were good, and Russian visitors were bad. The son of the President of Czechoslovakia is now the defence minister, which is bad, and Time reporter Bob Doyle was murdered by bandits in Indonesia this week, along with Yale sociologist Raymond Kennedy, which seems to go to show that Asians are bad. (Time wavers, but seems tempted to make the "argument.")  The Prime Minister of Pakistan is visiting Washington. In his honour, Time explains what a 'Pakistan" is. Jordan has officially annexed the chunk of Palestine it occupied during the war, with British support.  Japanese Communists are arguing with each other. 

In this hemisphere, Argentina has a loan from the Export-Import Bank so it can buy American stuff and then sell stuff to America. Hope that works out for them! Guatemala's election features a Red candidate, Jacobo Arbenz, who is out there leading charges and revolutions and Communist-line labour unions. This has led to Alexander Wiley (R. Wisconsin) to wake up and notice that he'd been elected to the Senate at some point, and should really do something about pressing matters like some pinkos down Guatemala way who think they can get away with all the stuff they're getting away with. (Like criticising the American ambassador for his "outspoken opposition to Communism in Guatemala." I thought diplomats were supposed to be diplomatic?) America and Mexico are fighting about fishing rights in the Gulf of Mexico.


Steel is up! With the price of scrap going up a dollar in a week, there's even talk of steel-driven inflation, although Leon Keyserling takes time out to be optimistic, after a great deal of casting gloom on the economy's ability to keep on creating jobs. Proctor and Gamble has so much money that it can buy a story in Time that says, as far as I can tell, that Wondra is the new wonder "wash off" cold cream and that President Neil McElroy is the best thing since sliced bread. In Seattle, the Bon Marche department store is financing a giant suburban shopping centre, Northgate. At $18 million, it is the largest in the United States. The new store's "Legend Room" restaurant seats 250 and is still full. By midsummer, Northgate's "Miracle Mall" is expected to have 70 shops, including two supermarkets, a 1468-seat theatre and a four-story office building. The parking lots will hold 4000 cars, none more than 600ft from the nearest store. 
Steak plus crabmeat plus Hollandaise plus asapragus. What's not to like?*

"Champagne in the Trunk" Dallas' Frigikar has come up with a "refrigerating unit that will cool an automobile." When I read that, I was imagining a garage-sized unit to cool a car for some inscrutable factory reason. They have them for working aluminum! It turns out that it is a fridge that fits in the trunk of a car and can cool it from 100 degrees to 70 in a matter of minutes, which sounds like the kind of business they'd come up with in Dallas. Frigikar, it turns out, has a lot of competition, so they have had to get creative and add a separate compartment for keeping your groceries (or champagne) cool. Also, Burlington Mills is still selling its Orlon wash-and-wear fabric, now promising men's suits in a few years. "It's also suitable for auto tops, awnings, and shower curtains," which had Uncle George's side splitting. He promised an explanation the moment "You show signs of growing a fashion sense." a company named Tele-king also bought space in Time to explain how they became one of the "top ten" American television makers. 

Science, Medicine, Education

"Worse Confounded" In 1947, British physicists G. D. Rochester and C. C. Butler of the University of Manchester found two new kinds of tracks from photographic plates exposed to cosmic rays. The upshot is that after some controversy, it seems clear that they are two new types of sub-atomic particles, as confirmed by Carl Anderson at the CalTech/ White Mountain cloud chamber, in a statement announced last week. One particle, the "V" particle, is neutral, and thus gives no track, until it decays into twoequal and opposite charged particles that make the "V" shape, while the other is  charged to begin with, and turns at an angle when it decays into a charged and neutral particle. I've already heard talk of a "zoo" of particles, but as Dr. Anderson puts it, the world is not "of too great [a] simplicity." 

Not to dwell on the point too much, but they're finding this stuff while trying to build an H-bomb. I really feel like we're understating the wild craziness of Fifties atomic physics

"A Peek at Peakers" The Signal Corps has shot some movies of wild rats for the US Public Health Service to see what they get up to. It turns out that they're quite nervous and excitable, and are always having coups against rat governments that oppose US interests. No, I'm sorry, my notes are mixed up. Actually, they are always having witch hunts against suspected rat communists. 

"Creaking Legions" The legions of arthritics who have been waiting anxiously for a year since the Mayo Clinic announced the dramatic results of its ACTH and cortisone treatments for arthritis were given bad news this week. Keep on waiting. It was all "false hope" brought by the "showmanship which marked the first news." Hormonal relief was very brief, and had serious side-effects. Other hormones (desoxycorticosterone acetate, 21-acetoxy-pregnenolone) or hormones combined with Vitamin C injections might be effective, but none have stood up to proper testing yet. 

"The Dangerous Doctors" Doctors don't like the word "iatrogenic," because it means "when doctors cause illness." But, psychologist Frank Gessford Erbaugh of Denver wrote in the Journal of the Michigan State Medical Society in the latest issue, it happens, caused doctor's "emotional shortcomings." Specifically, if a doctor is nuts, he may not notice that you're nuts, and before you know it, he's sawing through your rib cage because you're sad about not getting that transfer you wanted to anywhere but Formosa. Erbaugh goes on for quite a while about all the ways that doctors can be crazy. 

The week-long high schoolers' demonstration in New York gets heavy play, and no wonder when an estimated 200,000 kids turned out and even attacked police. (With bananas, but that still counts!) The papers are divided as to whether it was heroic (The Daily Worker) or "chaos." (Scripps-Howard.)  A museum in St. Louis has a lot more visitors now that it isn't boring.

A cut from the linked Nebraska History article. Peru Teacher's
had fewer than 250 students and was threatened with
closure due to the end of the GI Bill enrollment boom.
"Case of the Fired Professor" The Barney Baker story. See? This is how Time gets its reputation.  Just in case anyone reading this doesn't know, Baker was the professor at Nebraska's Peru Teachers College, who was fired, and reacted by taking a pistol down to the office and killing two of his (professor) bosses. Academic politics, they say. 

Press, Radio and Television, Art, People

This week's cover story is in Press, and is about Arthur Sulzberger, who is the publisher of the New York Times. Even for a cover story, it's long. 

"Laurels for 1949" Peabody Awards for this year include awards for television for the first time! Ronnie says I should file this under middlebrow, since awards went to Crusade in Europe, Eric Sevareid, Jack Benny, and the United Nations, and she sees a clear line through. I don't, although I'm one hundred percent behind not giving a comedy award to Jack Benny unless the alternative is Bob Hope. Old people! We outta throw some bananas at you . . . 

Communism is bad. (Because Russian radio has anti-American propaganda.) 

Last week we heard about a rich art collector. This week, we get to hear about another rich art collector, Quincy Adams Shaw, who was named after family friend and sometime President (or related?), John Quincy Adams. With a name like that --or family friends like that-- he naturally ended up a copper tycoon and dropped some Yankee dollars on a church in northern Italy a ways back in '74 for a giant, dingy canvas that he swore was by Tintoretto, a Venetian painter so famous that he donated his last name to feed the poor. (Or first, I'm unclear.)  Four years ago, the Quincy Shaws sold the barn door it was hanging from, and gave the canvas to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. "Thanks, I guess," said the Museum, and toted it right up to the attic. Well, the other day, since they need the attic to hold over unsold donations to the next Ladies' Auxiliary estate sale, they sent it out to be dry cleaned, and what do you know, it is a lost classic by Tintoretto. Anyone have a barn in downtown Boston so the Museum can display it? 

Another giant canvas is more recent, by a Spenser, and on show at the British Royal Academy of Arts. I learn here that "Spenser" is somehow Winston Churchill's family name, or near it, thereabouts. In much the same way, in spite of the feint towards the Adams family, Mr. Shaw was a Shaw, and if you remember Colonel Shaw, or the inventor of the iron lung, or a bunch of other things, you still won't know how the Agassizs and the Parkmans are also mixed into the rich, glowing oils with which the life of Mr. Shaw was painted. and the art of Mr. Spencer created.
Most of Spencer's work was drivel about his sexuality, (especially his insecurities) the trauma of war, his deep sense of spirituality, etc etc la de da. But in the war years he got into some meaty stuff. i've scraped this from Wikipedia because I prefer the page composition to the separate Wikimedia image files. The "Shipbuilding on the Clyde" series is held together at the IWM because no other museum wanted to display them together, but Glasgow has since come to its senses and displays them at the Riverside Museum on biannual rotation. 

The Treasurer of the United States can't balance her own books! Charles Laughton has become an American citizen. Luchow's Restaurant has been sold. Helen Gahagan Douglas will campaign in a helicopter! Mussolini's family held a requiem mass for him in Rome, protected from protestors by a police cordon. Tom Kinkaid is retiring. Communists are awful. Bennett Meyers is being divorced. Old Man Hearst got a nice letter on the occasion of his 85th birthday from none other than General MacArthur. Dominic DiMaggio has had a baby, Joan Caulfield is married, and so is Arthur Koestler. Generoso Pope has died. The charming, harmless publisher of the Italian-language American newspapers is best known for his letter-writing campaign that "helped defeat the Italian Reds in the '48 elections," although there's also the harmless eccentricity of supporting Mussolini until 1941. So has Walter Hutchinson and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Two Years Before the Mast) Dana. He was a pacifist and a communist, Time helpfully reminds us. 

The New Pictures

(Before I get into that, you'll be glad to hear that Eric Johnston has headed off talk of a legislative morality code for movies by persuading Congress that the industry would crack down on its own.)

The Big Lift is an ambitious attempt to make a big movie about the Berlin Airlift. It is "overlong and unwieldy." So it's a movie about Flight's coverage. (Which might still be going on, I don't know.) Time's crush: Cornell Borchers. Wabash Avenue has everyone's crush, Betty Grable in a musical where she wears silly dresses  that show off her legs. Time detects another remake, of Grable's 1943 Coney Island, and is unimpressed.  It is disappointed, not unimpressed, by Champagne for Caesar, which could have been another Miracle on 42nd Street, but is undermined by too much burlesque. (Translated: Jokes that don't land, not hootchy-kootchy.)


Upton Sinclair branches out into Another Pamela: Or, Virtue Still Rewarded. The original Pamela was a bodice-ripper, as they say, dressed up as preaching. Tiring of old Lanny Budd, he takes on a new Pamela mainly to have an excuse to portray the crazed household of a do-gooding Los Angeles society matron, which seems like biting the hand that feeds to me. Peter Abrahams' Wild Conquest tells the tale of the "hot-blooded, race-conscious Koos Jansen" and his brothers, who lead an exodus from Cape Colony when the British ruin their lives by emancipating their slaves. In the far wilderness, they fight the Matabeles for new land, and everyone's lives are ruined by violence, which is wrong. Alexander Baron' s The Wine of Etna is a war novel. Sean O'Faolain's A Summer in Italy is an Irishman-writes-about-an-Irishman-in-Italy novel. 

Aviation Week, 8 May 1950

Industry Observer reports that Martin is fiddling with adding an acorn to the tail of the XB-51, that Fairey Canada is going to build Fireflies in Canada to replace Grumman Avengers, That it will be at least a year before Reynolds Metals extruded ribbed sheet shows up in aircraft, that Glenn L. Martin has come up with a new rotating antenna for its Stratovision B-29s. I wondered what had happened to that project! I guess they must have been having trouble with interference.
"The little-publicised project has obvious military applications to guided missiles." Sure, I guess. But I have a feeling the only reason it's little publicised is that it didn't really work. Speaking of, the Northrop C-124 is going up against the Chase YC-122 in the "assault transport" competition. I guess the USAF was told that they had to pretend to have an open trial before they bailed Northrop out by buying some junk to make up for yanking the flying-wing rug out from under the company. Minneapolis-Honeywell is building a "stabilising device" for the B-47 to fix one of those "the company never told us was a problem until it had a fix" problems. It is going into the Northrop YRB-49a, which is the latest attempt to rescue said flying wing, and which certainly needs a "stabilising device," from all I've heard. OPERATION SWARMER somehow turned into OPERATION PORTREX in the Air Force's final summary, which briefly reports respective kill ratios of Navy and Air Force fighters. The Navy did pretty well! (A later article reports that the exercise showed "weaknesses" in airlift. Aircraft take too long to unload, too long to land, and still no-one can agree on what the perfect air transport looks like.)

News Digest The F-96 is in testing, Frank Piasecki has been promoted out of the way, Sherman Fairchild is back in charge at Fairchild, the Comet had another sparkling test run, and 50,000 passengers flew the North Atlantic in the first quarter of 1950, up 25% over last year.

"$300 Million More Slated for Aircraft" Everybody gets a million!  The Navy still doesn't think it's enough, but the Air Force (and Aviation Week) are building a statue to Carl Vinson.

"Prototype Proposal Gets Lease on Life" Senators Johnson and Brewster push on with their plan to give industry some money to whip up a jetliner, since the airlines and builders can't do it on their own. 

"Martin 4-0-4 Sales Effort" The 2-0-2 was a bust, but here's another, newer, better. 

"AGCA Evaluation Tests Authorised" The Air Navigation Development Board has authorised a complete evaluation of the Automatic GCA system at Wright-Patterson. ANDN thinks that automatic GCA is probably the ultimate solution, but cordially disagrees with developers at Gilfillan that what they have now is good enough to replace ILS and other aids.

Aeronautical Engineering has H. L Hansberry sum up  aircraft firefighting discussions at the SAE meeting.  He reviews engine fire extinguishers, competing fire detection systems, baggage hold fire suppression, crash fires and electrical fires as the "state of the art" appears this year.

"Materials Substitution Plan for Turbojets" The SAE also heard a paper about the pressing need to organise and plan for building turbojets that don't use up all that vital, strategic alloy. Do you really need all that nickel/chromium/silver/tungsten/titanium and so on? Speaking of, do we really know what is "strategic" and what isn't? Who even knows what is mined in America, or could be? Getting into the spirit of things, the author even has an index that rates engines by their strategic cost so that you can compare too much tungsten in one engine (part?) with too much nickel in another.

"Devaluation First Half-Year" A six-month review of the effects of devaluation on world trade shows that it has worked out well for Britain, not so well for Fance, and Aviation Week can't make up its mind about the rest of the world.  The difference is that the national industries are different. (Surprise!) Britain builds planes, France flies passengers. So it turns out The Economist was wrong about devaluation. I'm picking myself off the floor, I tell you.

New Aviation Products is slightly excited by Lear's Midget Direction Finder. It is small, but accurate, and the RCAF might buy it. I dunno. If there's an air force that shouldn't go cheap on direction finders, it would be the RCAF! BTH has an air leak detector, Stevens Mfg has a bimetal thermostat for aircraft installation, Excelo of Alhambra, California, has a light plane carburetor cleaner, Hahn Aviation Products has a new "self-scavenging" spark plug that bleeds off a bit of the detonation to clean the spark plug (WITH EXPLODING FIRE!)

Air Transport has an article from Boeing that confirms that the Stratocruiser can take off. Good. We were wondering when they started arriving at London so wet. Just in case, though, Boeing is asking for 6000ft runways before it rolls out a jet transport, and assures future passengers that chute stops are perfectly normal. It also explains that noise isn't a problem because hardly anyone lives near airports, anyway. Air Transport also reminds us that "American planes carry the load," which is true, but the fact that there's still 1100 DC-3s in service doesn't hut. Edward Besey, the pilot who overshot Shannon and landed his DC-4 in the Atlantic Ocean, is suing Transocean, "his former employers" for writing him a letter that called him "incompetent." Besey was making $12,000, which is three times more than that gun-crazy professor was making when he was fired for incompetence.

Editorial still loves coaching and draws lessons from OPERATION SWARMER. Good. I'm glad someone did. I didn't, but what do I know? I only read Aviation Week.  


No comments:

Post a Comment