It has been a frantic week as Reggie received last minute instructions ordering him to the naval laboratory at Woods Hole for top secret discussions of top secret stuff related to listening for submarines from ground stations, and then back to New York in time to catch our liner. I was to have a fine time catching up with Miss K., who has since last I was part of her circle completed an MA in French at the University of California, and who was on her way to Paris for PhD studies. Unfortunately for me, although not for her, a whirlwind shipboard romance supervened (and I think she has doubts about doctoral studies, anyway, and is more interested in authorship). So I have seen absolutely nothing of her, the Sorbonne will see nothing of her, and perhaps I was there to see the salad days of one of the writers who will answer John Pierce's call for a more serious kind of science fiction!
And I had the time to finish this letter, while my darling bones up on the physics of computed acoustics, or some such. It has Fourier and Laplace transforms, anyway. Whatever those are, for I fear that closer exposure will leave me an irremediable neuropsychiatric case! (Whatever happened to shell shock? I can spell shell shock without pausing and using my fingers to remind myself that the "y" comes before the "c." When I write in English, I mean. Or type it, which is the real issue.)
Your Loving Daughter,
"Saucer Season" Newsweek explains why we're hearing so much about flying saucers right now. It's the silly season. Also, Bill O'Dwyer is not getting Mexican citizenship, and anyone who says different (specifically, Bob Prescott of the UP's Mexico City bureau) is a rat fink bastard. But he's staying in Mexico, just the same.
"Exhibition Site" Flight spends an entire page on the British European Airways helicopter test and exhibition site recently announced at some location very close to London, because it will show people who matter how nice helicopters are, but also how loud they currently are. It surely wouldn't be that hard to quiet helicoptes, and someone needs to work on that if they are going to realise their commercial potential, seems to be the argument.
Geoffrey Dorman, "Years Ago, Before the War" I kid, I kid! I tease because I love. It's actually "Selecting a Military Aircraft: Forty Years Ago: Memories of Salisbury Plain Before the Dawn of 'Security" I'm sure that for someone interested in the early days of aviation, this would be a very interesting article, although if somehow they are coming upon it via this letter, I have to warn them about Dorman being pretty dumb and unreliable.
Here and There reports that the Fouga 170R twin-seat jet fighter/trainer has made its first flight. Italy is having an industry display in Milan in September to show what it could be building if it were building planes. Admiral Radford took the Seventh Fleet into the South China Sea and flew a 100 jet aircraft strike to just short of the three mile limit to give those dirty commies a reminder of something or other. Everyone thought that the Air Force's "Trainer X" specification earlier this year was a bit much, but now Fairchild is offering the Fokker S.14 with a Derwent engine to tender. Eight of fifty RCAF Lancasters at RCAF Greenwood have been found to have been sabotaged with rags stuffed into the air intakes of one or another engine. The USAF is having difficulties explaining why no fighters were scrambled from Andrews Air Force Base to intercept the 8 July flying saucer sighting. After some hemming and hawing, the accepted excuse is repaving on the runways.
Did you know that there was a scientific conference on gliding at the World Gliding Championships (which you may remember were held in not-Fascist-at-all Spain, and which were attended by not-Fascist-any-more Germans?) There was! And it heard fascinating scientific papers about gliding! And I mentioned them here, unlike the model aircraft meet in London scheduled for the next Bank Holiday, which I didn't. I know, I know, Flight has to talk about these things because these groups are part of the Royal Aero Club. Doesn't mean I can't make fun!
Henry Morris, "Commercial Aircraft Commentary" Parliament has been talking about civil aviation lately. The Churchill government has plans, but we're not sure what they are, and Labour wants a National Air Policy, which a lot of people think would be a good idea, but only if it were the right policy, which there is disagreement about. So either you resolve the disagreement, or you have no Policy and just muddle along. Which seems to be where things are going.
As Farnborough ends this year, BEA will receive its first Discovery-class Viscount, which is the occasion for a melancholy meditation on the way in which an exciting and brand new plane, just entering service, is somehow old hat after all the prototype showings in past Farnboroughs. Fifty-four Viscounts are on order, no orders have been lost due to Vickers not being able to make early delivery dates, and planned production over the next two years is expected to reach 4 aircraft a month. Since the first demonstrations in 1948, the plane has accumulated a great deal of flying experience, there have been full tropical trials, and the original expanding brakes have been replaced with disc brakes and Maxaret non-skid equipment. The Rotol airscrews are fully feathering and electrically de-iced. Radio-equipment is good, flight performances around Nairobi are good, serviceability is high, the water-methanol injection is fine. It's fine.
"Government Collaboration in Aircraft Development:" Precis of a Lecture Given to the National Aeronautic Meeting of the Society of Automotive Engineers at New York by Mr. S. Scott-Hall. (A "Senior M.o.S. official") The lecture explores the contributions the Ministry of Supply has made to the development of recent aircraft and concludes that the days of exclusive private developments are over, before going into the details of organisation at some length.
"Our American Correspondent Reports" that he saw that bit in Aviation Week about an American sales agency for the De Havilland Dove, and isn't that a poke in the eye for someone. The Americans have nothing to compete, not even that old Beechcraft, and what about gas turbines and the fact that there's no American competition for the Marathon or the Prince?
Silentbloc of Victoria Gardens has accquired the sole British and British Commonwealth production rights for the Interlock Locating Pin, a cheap clamp for skin-riveting work. Solar Aircraft has a brochure on its method for ceramically coating hot parts, and the Department of Industrial Research has published (through HMSO), the third booklet, Electricity, in the series Units and Standards of Measurement Employed at the National Physical Laboratory.
Robert Picknell, in Canada, and W. E. W. Petter, of Folland Aircraft, disagree on whether British aircraft designers are wise to take jobs in Canada right now. G. N. N., of Cambridge, saw a dark contrail recently and wonders if it was left by an unseen F-86 or F-94.
"A Peep at British Guided Missiles" Duncan Sandys went to visit the guided missile test site in Aberporth and saw some very impressive sights that may soon come to Farnborough. He was pretty vague about the details, especially about the electronics and other components that make up the "guided part," but the press release includes a keen photo of a two-stage missile taking off.
"North Greenland Expedition" The 26 members of the Expedition, which is to explore a little-known mountain range in the north of Greenland and the ice-cap beyond, has flown out of Pembroke Dock in a Sunderland of 230 Squadron, and will land on Britannia Lake at 77 degrees 07 minutes north, about 888 miles from the North Pole. Four more Sunderlands have been assigned to take in all the supplies necessary during the expected six week period in which the lake is ice-free.
People have very different opinions about the two different opinions about Point Four expressed by Henry Hazlitt and Justice Douglas. People in the liquor industry think that liquor taxes are too high. People who aren't, are much less sure. Our Publisher writes to explain why Newsweek thinks that its coverage of the Republican convention was the best thing since sliced bread.
The Periscope reports that the Kefauver organisation is $100,000 in debt, and people are saying that he is going to pay a heavy price for going up against the Fair Deal gang. Stevenson picked his running mate without checking in with Southern Democrats. More specifically, it is a well-deserved stick in the eye for Dick Russell. Even though the AMA doesn't like the Truman health plan, there were more doctor delegates at the Democratic convention than the Republican. The Army is keeping General Grow's court martial a secret to avoid giving away the parts in his stolen diary which are sensitive. And not because the Army is sweeping it under the rug or anything like that. Army scientists are worried about disposing of radioactive waste from atom plants, since it will remain dangerous for a very long time and might leak out of the underground concrete chambers currently proposed to store it. Local draft boards are running out of 20-year-olds to draft, although General Hershey says they are rating too many call-ups (one out of three) 4F. More and more unionists are getting jobs at the State Department instead of Ivy League graduates, mainly because of the new position of labour attache. Periscope predicts that de Gaulle's party will continue to crumble in the coming months. Churchill will make sure that Mountbatten doesn't make trouble as British Mediterranean commander because Churchill hates Mountbatten for being too socialist. Berlin Communists want to rebury Karl Marx's body in Berlin. The Chinese Reds are staging fake UN "germ bomb" air raids against their own cities, while a Red household quota for rat tails is producing predictable results. The Russians are expelling the Americans from their current Moscow embassy because they are jealous that the capitalists have such a nice building. A German film company is making a documentary about General Rommel, because he was a good German. Filming is so cheap in Italy that Hollywood productions are squeezing out Italians. Aldo Ray and Roderick Crawford are going to do an American version of From Here to Eternity for Columbia. Other remakes include Stewart Grainger in Ben Hur, a new Rebecca with Jennifer Jones(!!!), and Student Prince with Mario Lanza and Ann Blyth. Tony Curtis is going to do a biopic of Houdini, one of the Shubert theatres in New York will be converted to show three dimensional movies using the new Cinerama process in the fall, and Warner is producing a newsreel in colour.
Washington Trends spends an entire column explaining that Stevenson has a chance to beat Eisenhower, in case Newsweek shareholders still think they're getting value for the money they pay Lindley, Moley and the gang. As a bonus, we're told what to expect from a Stevenson Administration.
a sighting of eight flying saucers on the National Airport radar scopes and by a commercial pilot, but barely at all by two F-94s sent up to intercept the next time they showed up, on the weekend. (Which was all the talk on the train to New York.)
"Upheavals in the Middle East: Farouk Out, 'Old Mossy' In" The King of Egypt is gone, the Premier of Iran is back. The 32-year-old King Farouk was overthrown by an army officers coup led by General Mohammed Naguib. Apparently Farouk appealed for British intervention, which was refused because the British hate Farouk and respect Naguib; and Naguib had to be persuaded to not have Farouk shot out of hand. Meanwhile, Mossadegh is back in Iran because there was very nearly a revolution when "the street" heard that he was out. This also means that Mossadegh adds the War Ministry portfolio. It was the Shah's refusal to make him War Minister that led to Mossadegh's resignation in the first place. Newsweek reports that the Premier has approached the British about a compromise on oil.
the mullah who backed Mossadegh's return is deemed to be the boss of "Terror Incorporated." High level negotiations involving Schumacher and Georges Monnet to implement the Schuman plan, Ambassador Kennan is snubbing the latest Red Air Force air show because Communism is bad, Chinese Reds are particularly bad, a lobster pinched off the nose of a famous French restauranteur, and the French aviation industry is crippled by lack of money and all those awful Reds that work for it. Newsweek is astonished at the way the French keep trying to push French aircraft instead of the "admittedly superior" American types, and notes that the French and Germans are talking about a "European aviation industry" to go up against the American on a more equal footing.
On this continent, Eva Peron is dead.
Not a song I associated with Sinead, which is probably unfair to both Sinead and Eva.
Periscope Business Trends reports that even though the steel strike has been settled (although that isn't enough to stop a page and a half of story on the settlement), there won't necessarily be a rash of wage gains this year, that the oil industry is investing a record $4 billion dollars this year, that Americans spend almost a billion dollars a year on sporting goods, with boats as the biggest category, that several banks have gone to Washington for permission to set up their own armoured car branches, that it is reported that sugar cane waste might make fine newsprint, that the Customs Bureau is thinking about taxing imported chlorophyll as a chemical rather than a vegetable extract, which will push the tariff up 5%. Serves those drunks right for trying not to get caught!
"No More B-36s" The Air Force "abruptly" cut off further B-36 orders, effective at the end of 1954. Lammot du Pont gets a long obituary.
Notes: Week in Business reports that Canada's Sears and Simpsons department store chains are merging as Simpsons-Sears. Living costs in June was the highest in history, 189.5% of costs in 1935--9. compared with the previous peak of 189.1 last January. Dow is making a stock issue, and the Santa Fe is running a six week summer school on the University of Southern California campus for its "middle management." Newsweek doesn't say how many of the railroad's 65,000 employees count as middle management. Then we check in with travel agency, World Travel Plan, which is offering a European summer travel package for only $395. A. G. Burr's package costs $595, but is swankier, complete with planes from an airline someone's actually heard of. World Travel Plan points to the number of companies giving employees paid vacations and predicts that the future of shipping the American middlebrow across the Atlantic in gently used airliners and putting them up in concentration camp hotels can only grow.
Also, Reggie points out that I'm being a complete snob, especially when I'm essentially travelling on my Dad's dime!
Products: What's New reports that Willoughby's has a midget projector that weighs less than 2 pounds and projects 3 by 5 inch transparencies up to ten feet. American Beauty Cover Co. of Dallas has a billfold for bills. William P. Lear's beautifully streamlined catamaran boat is an assembly-required perfect gift for the aspiring craftsman/boater. Crafttools of New York has a motorised potter's wheel.
Henry Hazlitt covers the most important business news in Business Tides by endorsing Eisenhower.
"Overhead Lakes" Dr. Lyman Bradford Smith is a botanist who studies the strange hanging plants of the Amazon jungle.
terramycin, and hope that they will not be able to tinker with it and make a better drug.
"Bearded Metal" Scientists at GE's Research Laboratory in Shenectady have been studying the way that aluminum corrodes by developing "beards" of whiskery oxides, the better to prevent it in various ways, such as coating the metal with oxides.
fat mice which typically grow to twice the weight of regular laboratory mice. This is impressive, first, because it proves hereditary obesity in mice, only the second species it has been recognised in. That is actually a leading comment, since many doctors think that obesity isn't hereditary in humans, but the mice were reported in a conference at Bar Harbour which also heard from Dr. Jean Mayer of the Harvard Medical School, who has one of those separated-at-birth twin studies to show that it is. How many separated twins are there? Do they all spend all their time doing scientific studies? Scientific minds want to know! Don't worry, we humans are Number One!), and because they make a convenient way of studying obesity. For example, Dr, Meyer says that the fat mice prefer high-fat foods compared with their non-fat distant cousins. It doesn't seem to be glandular, with thyroid, adrenal glands absolved of blame by various studies reviewed by Robert Speiers, who singles out the pituitary gland as the most likely cause of "glandular" weight gain. Interestingly, it seems that it is only the fat males who are sterile, although researchers have no idea why.
"Why Students Drink" Mostly bad parental influence, says a study by Robert Straus and Selden Bacon of the Yale Laboratory of Applied Physiology.
Medical Notes reports that Wyeth is producing a new anti-allergy medication originating in France, Phenergan Hydrocholoride. Doctors say that the new insecticide, toxaphene, isn't that dangerous, and barbiturates make a great antidote, so no-one should worry about toxaphene poisoning. The average doctor made $12,518 last year, up $980 over last year, compared with $7,743 for the average dentist. (There were 750,000 doctors in America last year.)
Radio-Television, Press, Newsmakers
A long story about how the Democrats learned from the television coverage of the Republican convention, and a shorter one about the "Idiot Board," or TelePrompTer, a sort-of telex terminal or "electronic device" that displays the manuscript of a speech, allowing speakers to appear as though they are ad-libbing rather than reading from a script.
LeRoy McHugh is an ace reporter, and it is great that Lee Choon Woo has started a Korean-language edition of Reader's Digest.
William Powell is retiring, Tommy Manville is getting divorced again, Sergeant York doesn't think that it is a good idea to have a general as President, Justice Douglas is off to Malaya for a vacation, Mayor Kenny of Jersey City says that as bad as it is, it is still better than Communist Russia, because it has freedom. Henry Wallace says he has no opinions about politics now, and Mr. and Mrs. Howard Jones, of Dunkirk, Indiana, are back home after a motoring vacation that took from from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego.
Jerome Hines has married, would-be assassin of Harry Truman, Oscar Collazo, has had his death sentence commuted to life, Alger Hiss' appeal has been denied, Edward Perkins, Charles Townsend Copeland and Brien McMahon have died.
The Duel at Silver Creek is a "cracking good Western" from Universal, starring Audie Murphy. Park Row "must be one of the most romantic pictures of newspaper life ever conceived." Newsweek thinks that it is so sentimental as to be grotesque, but Mary Welch does well as a "cruelly beauteous woman." Yes, I found a translation. No, that character hasn't appeared in print since the Eastern Tang. Universal's Has Anyone Seen My Gal is the film adaptation of that song that goes "Five feet two and eyes of blue/ . . ."Who needs a plot when you've got "corset parking"? MGM's Ivanhoe is an attempt to out-spectacle Quo Vadis. It is so "broad stroke" that Newsweek is ashamed of enjoying it so much.
John R. Pierce, an "electronic expert" at Bell Labs, is interesting. He has appointed himself a (literary) critic of science fiction. I personally agree that science fiction badly needs some critics, because most of their job is going to consist of throwing things in the trash can, but Pierce is a much friendlier critic, which, you know, maybe more with sugar than vinegar. After all, seventy-five science fiction novels were published last year, there are five firms dedicated to the field, science fiction novels sell 5000 to 7000 copies, which is more than Western and detective
fiction, and The Day the Earth Stood Still was the lead money maker last year. New American Library's paperpack edition of Robert Heinlein's Green Hills of Earth has sold a quarter million copies! With that out of the way, we are introduced to Pierce's criticisms, which mostly consist of him encouraging the authors to be bolder and more experimental.
Tasaki Hanama has a novel about love, political intrigue and crimes of passion. Harold Lamb is the latest author to succumb to the seduction of a long-ago Byzantine emperor and his wife, with Justinian and Theodora, which I'm not going to get into any further because it is a lot of history to do it justice.
"For Defence and Export" Once again, this has been covered as well or better in a Newsweek story which I have read, and you haven't. So I'm not going to say much about it, except as far as the next Leader, "Polychromatics" clarifies that, as far as the aviation industry goes, this is about Vampire and Meteor sales, because that's where the effort on "internationalising" instrument readings is focussed.
From All Quarters reports that there are intimations of a "Churchillian Ax" to be wielded against the RAF. There is a fuller report on the trans-Atlantic helicopter flight by two USAF Sikorsky H-19s, covered in Newsweek. It ended up taking ten days, mainly due to bad weather over Greenland. The helicopters then went on to star in a Dutch air display. (There was also an Air Display in Venice, and Bristol threw a banquet for various distinguished persons.)
Here and There reports that Ernst Heinkel and Fritz Siebel are coming to Farnborough. Some Fireflies from HMS Ocean mixed it up with MiG-15s over Chinnampho and had the worst of it. The Glenn L. Martin-made T-13 ground gunnery trainer is ready for delivery. A Pan Am pilot and flight engineer have been suspended after a woman passenger was somehow sucked out of a Stratocruiser while the plane was cruising at 15,000ft between Rio and Montevideo. No-one knows anything about the flying saucers seen over Washington. Residents are complaining about the noise from London Airport again. Gatwick may be confirmed as a diversionary airfield from London soon.
Temco and Fletcher are offering candidate aircraft for the role, here are some pictures of light planes with rockets and guns. Also, there is a two-seat MiG-15 trainer out there somewhere.
"Britannia Pre-Flight Testing" Bristol is taking sections of Britannia fuselage and smashing them with smashing things in testing rigs to show how strong they are. I feel like this should be a pretty early stage of the testing?
Einar Pedersen, "Polar Route" So it says here that the world is round, and that it is actually faster to fly from Edmonton to Stockholm, as so many people do, over the North Pole. I'm convinced!
"Viscount's Demonstrative Month" The Viscount demonstrator is off to India to fly Indian and Pakistani officials around so that they can enjoy its smooth feel and delicious taste. Or something.
Flight goes to Middle Wallop (which is a real place) to check with the joint RAF/British Army training course for liaison pilots.
Allison T-38 Engine in a Convair 240:Precis of a Paper Given to the SAE by D. J. Nolan" So the reader has been hearing about this for a while, and has perhaps picked up intimations in the press, or here, that the Allison turboprop has been plagued with reliability issues. That's because yours truly is married to a genuine naval aviator and has her ears to the ground, but also because it is true, and these facts have occasionally slipped into print in spite of Allison being practically the only source of news coverage on the trials. So. Does this precis of a paper given to the SAE by the Allison engineer in charge of the project, as reported in the British press, get to the nitty gritty? Not really, but I am not sure what to say. Development began back in the war, and the T-38 flew in a B-17 before it was installed in a surplus Convair 240. The idea that this Turboliner is ever going to be, or ever was considered, a commercial product, recedes into the background as the report becomes one of one problem after another encountered, traced, and solved, with many left to go. The comparison with the Dart, which is ready to enter commercial service, is jarring, but of course the Dart is a much smaller engine. We could compare it to the Proteus or the Mamba, but neither of those engines are exactly free and clear in regular commercial service yet, either. So I don't know what to say, other than that it is pretty clear that the T-38 is never going to power a production aircraft.
Flight looks at two new books, W. J. Duncan's Principles of Control and Stability of Aircraft, and William Ahrendt and John F. Taplin, Automatic Feedback-Control. They are both worthy books on important subjects about which there are far too few books. Follows a pictorial about helicopters, which are on show here and there around Britain.
R. E. Atkinson has doubts about the Flight Dispatch System, recently touted in a Flight article. CONVERT is worried about the hats of the Fleet Air Arm. Dennis Rattle has suggestions for keeping aircraft designers from drifting overseas. S. Porter is eager to see the RAF go aloft in their new Venoms and show up the USAF's Skyblazers in their F-84s. The Vintage Aircraft Club is not pleased with their recent coverage, which, Flight explains, was misconstrued and anyway didn't take account of the bad weather we've been having.
Civil Aviation reports that tourist fares on the Atlantic route increased traffic and revenues, rather than the reverse, as some feared. Private pilots are reminded not to press ahead in bad weather they are not prepared for. BEA is making money, various Olympic teams and attendees flew home from Helsinki, which is so too news, and the new DC-6Bs bought by Philippine Airlines recently landed in London on their way to Manila, which is also news because the stewardesses are pretty.
Flight reprints the Ministry press release about what the Air Transport Advisory Council is supposed to do.
The Engineer, 1 August 1952
The Engineer visits management training in the British construction industry, the institute of welding, Aberporth, the Mines electrical report, the Road Traffic Census (horse drawn traffic is down 38% since the last census!), bus service licensing, and the Federation of British Industry's report on research in British industry in what used to be its Seven Day Journal before its revamp and new typeface. (Yay!)
Delaware Memorial Bridge," much in the news, and in our recent lives, but here given the kind of detail the magazine is known for. This is a multipart article continuing in the 8 August 1952 issue, and I don't intend to treat it again there. The bridge, enormous as it looks from the air, is only the fifth largest suspension bridge in the world, but the fact that it rises from flat lands on either side and needs a massive and high ship channel made it a very expensive undertaking, which has been the subject of futile attempts for many years now. The success of the recent construction project has a lot to do with prodigious efforts to treat the underlying hard clay and silt with unprecedented amounts of hammering, pounding, digging and scouring, all of which will fascinate civil engineers just as much as the floaty-things from which these were undertaken. So since I am not a civil engineer and at a loss to single out what's the most amazing thing about all of this, I am going to clip a few pictures and hope they serve for a thousand words or so.
W. E. Lowe-Brown, "An Engineer's Impression of Australia" is a report on a trip to the Land Down Under to see various hydroelectric and irrigation works in Australia and travel the excellent roads between them, and marvel at Australian scenery with only occasional notes of condescension.
"1000kW Marine Gas Turbine Set" The Admiralty has paid for a marine gas turbine, which has been set up in a laboratory run by W. H. Allen in Bedford, and not at sea at all. It seems to have worked out pretty well. The government has dropped a notice about economising building materials, and The Engineer visits the new steel works at Shotton and the motor yacht Tonquin, before moving on to the White Paper on the steel and iron industry that I carelessly said was still waiting on the fall session of Parliament. In fact, the Paper is out, and the Bill that enacts it, is awaited. The steel industry will be privatised, but will be under some level of public supervision through a Council that replaces the single nationalised industry. Some heavy duty electrical switchboard equipment is featured, the anniversary of the American Reclamation Act is celebrated.
Not much doing this week. The Engineer thinks that the White Paper is pretty much fine, and has a lot to say about its new type face.
Literature covers books on welding nonferrous materials, coastal erosion, steel defects and their detection, and tungsten. There are textbooks on soil mechanics and the thermodynamics of alloys. I know that in the past I have given full bibliographic details, but was anyone reading them? At least you know what engineers are reading about professionally this week!
Uganda" A full writeup of the new passenger liner named after the landlocked colony. This is a continuing article, and next week's gets on to the machinery, so I will get into detail there.
The Swinden Laboratory is the new laboratory of the Iron and Steel Corporation that hopefully survives the denationalisation, and there is a two part article on transformer trolleys for British Railways, and, specifically, a new and improved tramcar.
"Some American Studies of Tyre Performance" A visit to the Bureau of Standards looks at the various ways that they are torturing tyres to see how and when they fail. African Engineering Notes covers the very small amount of actual building that the Empire is doing in foreign parts. What happened to Roman viaducts and roadsd? Anyway, Tanganyika is getting roads, Rhodesia is getting some water supply and hydroelectric.
Mary Louise Godeck liked what she saw of Stevenson on the television. I'm not sure why this is a letter to Newsweek, but then the next letter says that the Republicans should run on taxes. G. Ardeme of France writes to reassure Americans that they are doing a great job. Eduard Dallwig of Germany understands American elections now that Newsweek has explained them for him, while readers are split on the cartoon on the cover of the 28 July issue. Governor Warren of Florida denies everything Newsweek said about him, and Newsweek apologises. A Canadian writer from up Edmonton way claims that the RAF, and not the USAAF, invented the word "snafu." I don't know. Sounds American! David Roth liked the election coverage. Our Publisher wants us to know that the whole Newsweek team is ready to cover the election so long and so hard you'll never get over it!
The Periscope reports that the drought back East is "long overdue," which should console everyone paying through the nose for fruits and vegetables. There will probably be a few more years of bad farming weather to come. Ellis Arnall is not going to quit over the steel deal, the IRS is going to start publicising all the cases where tax fraud charges are settled with a deal, the Air Force used to think that flying saucers might be a Navy secret weapon, Dewey is not being purged from the Eisenhower campaign, Stevenson's appointment of Wilson Wyatt and Arthur Schlesinger to his campaign committee has assuaged the Kefauver camp, party insiders are hopeful that Harry Byrd will endorse Stevenson yet, military plane production is up to 800/month compared with 300 a year ago, with tank production at 450, the Air Force claims to have destroyed 60,000 trucks in Korea, which is all the Chinese had to begin with. Army Intelligence doesn't know why the Chinese have pulled back five divisions, but it might be that they are being refitted for an offensive. The Russians are backing off anti-American propaganda, Japan Air Lines has ordered two Comets, The French are trading for Chinese tea to keep North Africans happy, typewriters require a police permit in Romania now, Russian doctors are conducting sinister life-extending experiments with the aim of keeping Stalin alive, US Intelligence was caught off-guard by General Naguib's coup in Egypt, the Federal Reserve is going to start a publicity campaign and the AFL and CIO are conducting a campaign to make sure that railway union members are registered to vote, because up to 40% aren't. "Long hairs" are getting together in Washington to put together a plan for the 242 television channels set aside for educational programming. Yul Brynner will make his movie debut in Billy Wilder's New Kind of Love, while Sid Caesar and Imogene Coca are working on a movie based on their TV show and Walt Disney is in Britain filming a Technicolor production, When Knighthood Was in Flower.
Even by Periscope's standard, this week's entertainment news is pathetic.
Washington Trends reports at a page's length that this is going to be the most exciting and hard fought election campaign ever, and not Eisenhower's coronation. But just to show that Newsweek has its ears to the ground, goes on to report that the Coloured vote isn't coming back to the GOP in this election, either.
Oh, boy, there's an election on! So exciting! Adlai Stevenson hardly acts like a human sacrifice waiting for the high priest to stop fussing with the obsidian mirror at all!
Ernest Lindell explains for Washington Tides how candidates have to avoid looking like they are captives of their own party in order to woo independent voters, while looking exactly like captives of their own party to woo their own voters.
"Klobbered in Karolina" The FBI has arrested several of the Klansman involved in that outbreak of night riding and floggings in North Carolina last year.
"In McMahon's Shoes" After Brien McMahon's unexpected death, Clinton Anderson of New Mexico seems to have the inside track to be the new chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission. Also, General McArthur has joined the board of Remington Rand.
"Rainmaker Needed" Newsweek reviews the drought back east, which is starting to get serious from St. Louis down to Alabama.
"'Copters Span Ocean" Two Sikorsky H-19 helicopters have made the first, experimental flight across the Atlantic by way of Labrador, Greenland, Iceland and Scotland.
The Korean War
"It's Same Old Truce Stalemate: Big Raid Fails to Budge Reds" The talks are going nowhere, the "biggest raid" of the Korean War against " a single tactical objective" consisted of 63 B-29s attacking the aluminum plant of the Oriental Light Metals Company at Yangsi on the Yalu by radar on a murky, moonless night, and Major General Stephen Newton Shoosmith (which is a real name) has arrived in Korea for his new job, which is to follow General Clark around and send regular updates to London so that there won't be any more mixups or snafus about who bombed what. Meanwhile, Peking Radio is making new threats against Formosa.
"Egypt, Iran Quiet Down, But Red Coup, Civil War Threaten" The entire American press corps is back from Chicago. "So what did we miss?" They ask the lunch lady in the cafeteria as they wander in at noonish. "Oh, Egypt? And Iran?" Disappointed, they look down at their shoes. They were hoping that those excitable brown people would set something on fire and give them something to write about besides two glum, bald men running for President. After a long silence, the sports guy, who is getting a bit down ventures, "Maybe they'll light something on fire later?" Everyone perks up, gets in the lunch lineup. Meanwhile, King Farouk arrives in Rome, where he announces his intention of drinking his life away, while the Shah of Iran sends his sister-in-law and the first planeload of palace fixtures to Los Angeles, where he is planning to drink his life away. Americans can relax a bit, though, because it looks like the chief of "Terror, Incorporated" is on our side and is getting ready to crush the Iranian Communist Party, while in Egypt the Army is against the Muslim Brotherhood, ,which is the Egyptian version of "Terror, Incorporated." Which is goog. I know! It is very complicated!
"Denationalisation Plans"The Churchill government has laid out its plan to create a plan to denationalise the steel industry, in case someone wants to buy a bunch of steel shares that Labour might just confiscate when it comes back to power. Germans are upset about difficulties on the boundary between the Western and Eastern zones of Berlin, where the East Germans are suspected of preparing to erect barriers similar to the ones on the land frontier between the two. They're also divided about rearmament and about the Saar being divided, although the Schuman Plan is supposed to fix that. Other European defence problems include Spain, which is demanding $3 to $4 billion or otherwise it won't defend itself against Communism; France, which is demanding about two-thirds more than the severely cut US defence aid package so that it can afford to build armoured cars, planes and light tanks. Otherwise, it will have to close a bunch of armaments plants and equip its troops with pitchforks. The Churchill government continues to prove Aneurin Bevan right by extending the current, $13 billion defence programme by another year to 4, and by planning an unspecified shift in defence production priorities, perhaps to jet bombers and guided missiles over equipment for the Army, to be paid for by an increase in exports, a reduction in consumer goods imports, and dollar-earning by the defence industry, thanks to US defence aid paying for British guns for European troops. Also, the French are still hoping that US troops will take over the job of stopping Communism in Southeast Asia.
The British High Court has reversed the Hong Kong Superior Court decision awarding all those ex-Nationalist aircraft to the Reds, and giving them to Claire Chennault. The Reds are upset, Chennault is happy, and is pressing for the rest of the planes. The new ANZUS alliance is generating lots of diplomatic meetings, and Tokyo is the new sin city of the Orient in spite of police cracking down on streetwalkers, taxi dance halls and the Ginza.
"Remaking Nature for the Glory of the Great Stalin" Building dams and canals and power plants is questionable when Communists do it.
Argentina is mourning Eva Peron.
Periscope Business Trends reports that retailers are getting ready for a big season, and also for mail order sales to cut into business, and to cut overhead. Cost of living increases will be cutting into discretionary spending soon, people are buying fewer Government bonds now that interest rates are up, aircraft manufacturers are upset about something to do with changing depreciation allowances, businesses are investing less, aircraft sales are up, the Air Force and Navy are squabbling with the APB over whether they are ordering too many models and depressing production, or not. And all those dutiful European production tourists must be getting awfully bored of coming to see how Americans are producing more with less (measured in dollars versus their currency, which must be a completely transparent way of doing things, just look at the way that international trade is constantly snarled up with current account imbalances). I say this, or Newsweek says this, because the visitors are starting to get so frustrated that they're throwing their hands in and showing Americans the more efficient methods they use to they print paper, make cement, and raise pigs in their backwards homelands of England and Denmark.
"Controversial WSB Dies Out: Senate Reins in New One" The old Wage Stabilisation Board is gone, and the new one isn't going to do very much. Also, the steel strike might be over, but industry isn't done complaining about it, the new Prudential Insurance headquarters is a 21 story building chockful of modern conveniences such as an indoor swimming pool and some tennis courts next door. The coal miners are set to negotiate next. And we check in with Indiana's Servel, which, in spite of being starved for profits, is sticking with its old business of refrigeration (and air conditioning) but offering a new line of compact, plastic refrigerators that are more like end tables, to "liberate" kitchen space, and air conditioners, which, if installed in all new homes, can eliminate the need for screens, porches, and basements, reducing costs.
Notes: Week in Business reports that aluminum producers are getting a 5% price increase from the Stabilisation Board, that British auto sales in the US are up 21% in the first four months of 1952, at 6610 compared with 5292 in 1951. The AEC has authorised $33 million to experiment on atom-powered aircraft at the national reactor testing station in Idaho, and another contract to Westinghouse for an atomic reactor suitable for an aircraft carrier. A Federal court has ordered a GM subsidiary called GM Acceptance Corporation to stop its "monopolistic practices" in financing car and aircraft purchases.
A very long story about how American watch makers are pushing for more, or higher tariffs on foreign watches, and one about Braniff buying Mid-Continental Airlines.
Products: What's New reports that Westinghouse has come up with a clothes dryer that plays a tune when the clothes are dry as a signal to the housewife operating it. Because who else does laundry? Nobody, that's who! US Cutlery has a carving knife with a hollow handle and a bone saw on the reverse side, perfect for husbands who won't do the laundry . . . What? Refinite Corporation of Oklahoma has an adjustable swinging cattle door for gates, while Jay and Sunny of Los Angeles have a toothpaste cap that doesn't have to be removed. (You just razor an x-cut across the top, and the flaps keep the toothpaste in unless you squeeze it.)
Henry Hazlitt's Business Tides has "In the Wake of the Strike," which explains that the strike was bad, that the union was bad, that the Administration was bad for trying to stop the strike the wrong way, and that the strike will be bad for the economy.
Science, Medicine, Education
"Presidential Polls" Remember how in 1948 all the polls got the election wrong and predicted a Dewey landslide? George Gallop and Elmo Roper have hit the news trail this month to explain what they got wrong then, and why they won't do it again, and why you should hang on every poll story in the press for the next four months. They didn't poll close enough to the election and missed the collapse of the Wallace campaign and the 18 October break in farm prices. This year, they're going to keep on polling until three days before the election and catch all that stuff. Also, something about statistics, which is a science, which is why this is a story in Science.
"Calling All Martians" J. R. Pierce, who was in last week's issue as a science fiction critic, is in this week's issue pointing out that a mere ten-foot radio antenna would allow a static-free microwave television/telephone channel all the way to Mars. So you might need a flying saucer to pick up a call holding for you on Mars, but you would be able to hold a conversation over it. Unless the Sun's weather (which is a scientific fact!) interferes.
Science Notes of the Week The US Navy shouldn't make its lifeboats yellow, as "certain shades of red and green" are more visible from the air, says Lt. Commander Dean Farnsworth and research psychologists Florence Malone and Mary S. Sexton of the Naval Medical Research Laboratory in New Haven, Connecticut. Also, some Air Force T-33s have stayed in the air for a really long time with refuelling, which is even more Science news than polling. Now if you'll excuse me, I am off to write a script treatment for a 1953 summer replacement series set in a naval medical research laboratory. It'll be called Sexton. (Ronnie looks around innocently.)
"Law and the Schools" Robert Rolls Hamilton, the dean of the College of Law at the University of Wyoming (also the senior faculty, junior faculty, college secretary, and janitor) is running a summer school for school district officials who are, according to some statistics Hamilton has dug up, very, very likely to be sued over this or that. Northwestern in Chicago is also having a summer school at its law school, but it is a boring one for lawyers about lawyering, and I can't make fun of Northwestern having a law school, unlike Wyoming. (And, once again, I'm being unfair, because someone has to practice in Wyoming, and, come to think of it, that sounds like a great job for someone who wants to live in Wyoming!)
"Health and Welfare of Troops in Korea at New Highs"
A report on the health of the troops shows that the mortality rate amongst wounded has fallen to a record low of "2.3 per cent per thousand," which is not a typo, since the figure is cited the same way for WWII (4.5 per cent per thousand). 84% of wounded return to duty; 75% of fatal casualties are by shell fragments, 23% to small arms fire, but the figures are nearly reversed for those who die outright. Disease incidence is 15 per thousand compared with over 600 in the Pacific, diarrhea and dysentery incidence is one quarter of the CBI rate of WWII. Hemorrhagic fever remains a problem, frostbite inflicted 6000 casualties in the first winter of the war and cold weather complaints have led to a major investment of effort since. The army continues to lack psychiatrists, so doctors have been pressed into service to treat neuropsychiatric cases as close to the front as possible, and the result has been a decline in neurophysical discharges from 24 per thousand in WWII to 2 in Korea. A combination of Army medical training and the Army Specialised Personnel Training "draft doctors" has met the need for doctors so far, but the ASTP term ends in the summer of 1953, at which time the Army will have to make up the lack of doctors in Korea by calling up older doctors who received draft deferrals in WWII.
Radio-Television, Press, Newsmakers
"Film for '52" After a hard day drinking at the office while waiting for Iran and Egypt to catch fire, Newsweek gets home and turns on the television and is afflicted by summer "replacement" film television shows like Hunter, My Little Margie and Boss Lady. Newsweek hates them all and thinks that, except for I Love Lucy and Dragnet, film television is pretty much a bust. East Coast live television producers point out that everything coming out of Hollywood is terrible (and cheap, there's lots of stuff about cost-cutting), to which Hollywood replies that there are 75 firms producing 104 series in Los Angeles right now, that there is no room for amateurs and something to choose from for everyone. A new studio is going up in Hollywood for the first time in years because there is no room on the sound stages.
"Saucer Season" Newsweek explains why we're hearing so much about flying saucers right now. It's the silly season. Also, Bill O'Dwyer is not getting Mexican citizenship, and anyone who says different (specifically, Bob Prescott of the UP's Mexico City bureau) is a rat fink bastard. But he's staying in Mexico, just the same.
Arlene Dahl. Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon is a gentleman rancher. President Truman is being a good sport about not running in '52. Albert Einstein has no idea about flying saucers. The WCTU won't endorse anyone for President, because lips that touch liquor touch their lips all the time. Adlai Stevenson's ex-father-in-law thinks he talks too much to be President. Danny Kaye is in trouble for accepting an invitation to watch a surgery in a hospital, which is something that is done, but which evidently "music hall comedians" aren't allowed to do. Gypsy Rose Lee thinks that the British are a bit prudish, King Ibn Saud has had a DC-4 outfitted as a flying palace, some old people got married in New York, which is a story because Newsweek ran into the wedding party when it nipped out for a hot dog, and Nancy Chaffee and Ralph Kiner are in the column because they are famous and he's in a hitting slump.
Dreamboat (Twentieth Century Fox) is a "brisk, intelligent, funny spoofing" of the TV and movie industry. Oh. I see. When the movies do it to you with Park Row, it is "grotesque," but when they do it to themselves it is witty and insightful! Clifton Webb, Ginger Rogers and Elsa Lanchester are doing the insighting, if you wondered. The funny part is that Lanchester has designs on English professor Webb, whose dark past as a Valentino type in the silent days is revealed by Ginger's TV show. Portly older women can't like boys! Or men. Columbia's Affair in Trinidad is about Rita Hayworth having it off with atom spies in the Caribbean, not dreamboats of the Twenties. Unfortunately, it's dull. The Strange Ones is a French translation of a Cocteau novel (Ronnie has frissons!) So it is about terrible people ending badly, because that is what literature is over in the sophisticated countries where they know what wine to pair with what cheese.
Hassoldt Davies is an explorer and his bride is a photographer, and together they set off for a mountain range down South America way that is "one of the few uncharted jungle wildernesses" left in the world, with a French penal colony nearby to study if anyone gets bored. They pole their way upriver under the watchful eyes of unseen natives until the other natives who are doing the work refuse to go further, and then they go home. Thomas Costain's The Silver Chalice is a "new version of the tale of the Holy Grail," and is a boring "religious romance," unlike the usual Costain rouser. B. H. Liddell Hart, the prolific military historian/military affairs critic has presided over the English version of General Heinz Guderian's Panzer Leader, which is about how Guderian would have won the war single-handed if it weren't for that Hitler fellow.
Raymond Moley's Perspectives column on "Who is Responsible for What?" is actually about how Governor Stevenson is a nice fellow who would make a terrible President by way of explaining that he is all mixed up about who is responsible for what.
The Engineer, 8 August 1952
Not the Seven Day Journal reports on the engineering training mission to Latin America, the first proposals for private regular air services to be heard by the Air Transport Advisory Board, a new international standard for coal, a refinery in Trinidad, and the doings of the Coal Utilisation Board.
Rolt Hammond, "Applications of Scale Models in Engineering, Part One" Who knows, I may delve into this a bit later, but Hammond seems to build scale models of very large scale developments based on aerial photographs, and for now I haven't much to say.
"British India Liner, Uganda," Like all modern liners, Uganda is a steamer, using high pressure (450lb, 750 degree) steam turbines for economy at high cruising speed and ancillary services and comfortable heating and efficient laundry provided by high pressure steam. Gearing is single reduction, double helical, propellers are variable pitch, superheat is controlled by an oil pitch relay system, there is forced-draft, air preheating, and regenerative condensors in a closed feed system, with Weit-built "Robot" automatic feed regulators. A Pyrene firefighting system is installed in the machinery spaces.
"Combined Flame Failure and Pressure Cut-Off Device" describes the arrangement from the Gas Group of Thomas De la Rue that makes gas boilers safer than others, before the magazine visits the High Voltage Test Laboratory of British Electrical Engineering.
Much more substantial this week! "Economics and Armaments" provides much the best explanation of what went wrong with Labour's rearmament plan, without mentioning Bevan by name. In the magazine's view, Labour's plan was feasible if production continued to rise at the rate that it had been since the end of the war, even if it cut into domestic production for consumption a bit. Then a balance of payments crisis, which in retrospect we can see was more-or-less one of the normal fluctuations we have seen since the war, worsened by the low level of foreign currency and gold reserves imposed by events outside the Government's control (mainly the situation in Iran, if I recall correctly) cut into raw materials imports and ground production and development to a halt. We are now in a situation where the full programme cannot be afforded, and the Prime Minister's plan to export armaments is the best way out of the dilemma imposed by the high capital investment required to establish new armaments production lines. Exporting what is likely to be a temporary surplus of coal production, while good for the balance of exchange, is probably going to lead to a shortage of domestic coal next winter, or the one after.
"The Atomic Weapon" The Engineer notes that we still know hardly anything officially about the imminent British atomic test in Australia, but we do know that the atomic weapon, while lethal against civilians mainly due to its blast and flash effect, there is a deterrent factor based on the fact that it is likely to be used in retaliation against the enemy's cities if it is used against ours. The bomb is more likely to be used as a "conventional weapon," that is, against troops, and that the recent tests in Nevada show that the radiation danger is overestimated and that infantry can hold ground against atomic attacks with the help of bunkers. Thus, the atomic weapon will be part of a regular land warfare campaign, in all likelihood, if it is used. Thus, the atomic bomb is not a ticket out of rearmament.
Literature looks at a textbook on mechanics, and that's it this week to make room for a Letters column, since there is a correspondence on whether combined power and heating plants can save coal, in light of problems with the different flue pressure in the two uses, to be taken up.
H. N. Clack's "Natural and Artificial Sources of Radiography" presents the case that current practice of using radium where high-intensity radiation is needed (to look through metals in industry, and at people in medicine) is unnecessary if the cheaper radon sources already used in less serious applications, are treated correctly. At least, I think that's the gist of it, since radium decays into radon, so all radium sources have associated radon.
"New Jersey Turnpike" The turnpike was finished in November of last year so this is a bit late to be doing an article about it, but, the magazine says, it is a very important road in a very important part of the world, so let's start an extended look! The Engineer also visits the Mersey Dock and Harbour Board's new survey launch, and a scheme from the Tillman Langley Laboratories for a full aircraft docking facility, which looks like a temporary building erected around and over an airplane to make maintenance easier. It is very quickly assembled using their "keylock" system, and is easily transported when disassembled. And there's a very attractive model to show you!