Saturday, March 2, 2024

Postblogging Technology, November 1953, II: Calamity White


Dear Father:

I know that you're going to call me a flighty girl for saying it, but the biggest technology story of the week is a silly movie from a producer who obviously hasn't a clue what he or she (but let's be honest, it's a "he") is doing: Flight to Tangier, in which the studio's money was staked on Jack Palance as a romantic lead. The movie itself, a CinemaScope, Technicolor production for flat screen, 3D or widescreen viewing, is just an amazing statement on the progress of the technology of film making over the last few years. If you can credit television with anything, it is for getting the studios to drop some money into something besides' actors' salaries. I'm thinking about this a lot because of the amount of time I am spending up at Bray, and I know that the studio doesn't exactly spell "sophisticated" to anyone who isn't impressed that I have Eva Bartok's autograph. I don't care. More money is being spent on making bad movies look good (and sound good, too, how did we get beat out to be the first with video tape?) than anything else besides going fast. It's going to matter some day! And not just for those of us making money by smuggling silver. 

Your Loving Daughter,



In an unusually awful editorial blunder, Newsweek pronounced the USS Mississippi sunk as of 1924. Five letters, probably selected from many more, point out that it seems to be misunderstanding a news story about a 1924 accident.  (Or, actually two accidents and almost another one.Lloyd Dunn points out that snakes are deaf. Mrs. Robert E. Ludwig of Drexel Hill liked the Caruso painting because it reminded her of a story about her son. Everyone liked that story about New York being a hell of a town. For Your Information introduces us to Lee Chang Wha, Newsweek's distributor in Korea. 
You would not believe how  heavy a box of canned goods that size is.

The Periscope reports that, while the Administration is still denying that it plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Europe, Army strength in Europe has already been drawn down by 50,000 by not replacing men rotated home. "Paris insiders admit" that if the Soviets were willing to talk about a German settlement, the EDC would already be dead. Pentagon insiders say that General Partridge has been removed from Army Intelligence because of his clash with Senator McCarthy, and that the three Democrats who resigned from McCarthy's committee did so because their mail had turned angry after the Fort Monroe inquiry began. Newsweek reports rumours about the extremely complicated history of Brownell's decision to raise the Harry Dexter White matter. Washington is worried about the amount of US money entering the East Bloc through places like Hong Kong. Governor William Stratton of Illinois is a rising Republican star. The F-102 has also exceeded the speed of sound, so stick that in your pipe and smoke it, North American. East German propagandists are getting excited about test firing  atomic artillery. Newsweek reminds us that there aren't going to be any live test firings, but someone is embarrassed, because here's a rumour about Soviet atomic artillery out somewhere in Poland. (With no ammunition, because the Russians can't make it yet.) Senator Irving Ives is going to try to revive the Federal Fair Employment Practices Commission next session, the IRS is using Coast Guard helicopters to spot moonshine stills, the Russian food shortage is so severe that they're spending gold to import food, something about Trieste, Red China is making moves on Japan again, Norway has been a very bad country for sending 3000t of aluminum to Russia, West Germany is now the second largest shipbuilder in the world after Britain, edging out the United States. (At least, the way Americans count it.) The Russians have let Field Marshal Paulus out of jail for sinister reasons. 

US Steel's "initial TV drama, POW," is quite something. ABC is going to counter Talk of the Town and NBC Comedy Hour with a full-hour Sunday night drama show in the Fall. All Hollywood is laughing at What's My Line? for being an ad lib show with six writers. Fox is doing two CinemaScope movies with Marilyn Monroe, while Franchot Tone and Betsy von Furstenberg are set to star in Edward Chodorov's psychiatric comedy, Oh, Men! Oh, Women! Where Are They Now catches up with Ruth Steinhagen, who is living quietly with her parents, Howard Unruh, who is still involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital.

The Periscope Washington Trends reports that Eisenhower is afraid of losing control of Congress to conservative Republicans next session, and the solution is a bold new Presidential agenda. 

National Affairs

"Communism: Big New GOP Weapon From Now Till Next November" Yep. You heard it here first. The GOP's going to run on anti-communism. So far they've got Harry Dexter White and . . . we're working on it. More on the off-year elections, in case you've had your head under a rock and haven't heard that the GOP took a beating. To show how serious it all is, Newsweek gives Everett Dirksen a full page boxed column to explain that people are tired of Republicans doing nothing but getting in the way of the President. Ernest K. Lindley uses his Washington Tides column to air the President's diagnosis, which is that he is much more popular than his party. 

The first snow of the season has hit the east coast while Los Angeles has been shut down by a smog so severe that people are coming down with "smog sickness." Atlanta city council has raised its own stink by first banning after-hours parking in Piedmont Park and then unbanning it after they got everyone from English reporters to sociologists asking questions. Tomoya Kawakita is on death row after being recognised as a sadistic POW guard, while shopping in a Los Angeles supermarket. (President Eisenhower has commuted the death sentence to life imprisonment.)

"First Team Upstairs" Newsweek went to the F-100's press party and was impressed by the F-100 and also the J57, which brings America level with Britain in jet engine design. "But the British aren't the probable enemy," and a convenient graphic shows that the USSR has 20,000 planes to the US 14,000, in spite of the US industry employing 623,000, to the Russians' 500,000. Fortunately, the F-86 is better than the MiG-15 and we have the B-47, B-62, B-66, F-100, F-102 and F-84F. 

A profile of General Thamaya, the commander of the Indian peacekeepers in Korea, warrants a special "The Truce" heading.  Newsweek likes him because he is anti-Communist and "reinforced three crucial passes leading into Tibet" because he is concerned that the Reds are up to no good. 


"Problems In and Out of Russia As Red Policy Shifts to Asia" Russia doesn't want to talk about whatever it was they were going to talk about ((I'm fading out a bit. Were we still talking about a non-agression pact?) Instead they want to talk about something else with ou
her people. France, maybe? Hungary communists are silly as well as terrible. The results of the Philippine elections are not yet in, but we get a full page explanatory story. The Mossadegh trial is getting underway.

"The Homosexuality Issue" Lord Montagu of Beaulieu's homosexuality has become a national sex scandal in Britain. Montagu not being enough for a real scandal, Kenneth Hume has also been charged, and it has been revealed that there are 600 male public indecency charges on the court dockets, leading the Sunday Express and Daily Mail to conclude that homosexuality "is spreading like a foul growth in our midst." Then they caught Sir John Gielgud, and the Sunday Times decided that it had to run a story. Some people (and The New Statesman and Nation) are calling for reforms in the laws against homosexuality, while The Spectator thinks it is just a fuss about nothing. On the other hand I'm sure the usual crowd will seize on Patrick Lydon as evidence that Britain has gone all moral rot. 

Say what you will about Newsweek and Trieste coverage, at least it manages to tell me that the Fascist rioting in Trieste last week led to the special police (recruited by the British and Americans) opening fire and killing 6 protestors. 

Ibn Saud's obituary is long and generous, and for some reason Abdy Hamzavi gets a full page interview to explain how Iran is going to be a good country from now on. He speaks English and seems to have a lot of money, but he's been living in London for 25 years, which leaves me wondering what exact insight he has into Iranian affairs at this point. 

In this hemisphere, General Odria of Peru is a success story because, five years after taking power in a coup, he is now an elected President. Pity about there being no-one to run against him. Also, Lima is quite nice, he believes in free enterprise, and is appalled by American economic policies towards Latin America. No-one's wrong about everything!


The Periscope Business Trends reports that we "shouldn't be surprised if the recent elections creep into the Administration's planning." That is, there will be some inflationary policies, but "carefully controlled," since Administration officials "have staked their careers" on there being no serious recession, just a "readjustment." The Treasury wants a harder fight against tax cuts to prevent an anticipated $8 billion deficit if Congress gets its way. Congress is also going to freeze social security payments. Forecasts call for Christmas sales to trend "slightly" downward, with apparal, radios, phonographs, and especially toys booming. Gas prices may be going up, the Air Force is casting around for ways to keep the aircraft industry from "disintegrating," the milk strike in New York points to a trend away from home milk deliveries, and civil defence building in factories may be worth a 100% tax write off soon. 

"Pool for Independents" With all the talk of mergers amongst the independent automakers, the next step is some kind of pool or cartel. Also, (and this non-sequitur is under the title, not me), Ford is reported to be reviving its Continental brand. 

A recent conference recommended extending Social Security benefits to fifteen million people now excluded, on the grounds that it would make for a "stronger country." Daniel Starch and Staff's long-awaited study of audience reaction to ads, which indicates that only 41% see them, is provoking a fierce response from the television industry, which claims that the telephone survey was flawed. Seagrams of Canada is having a nationwide photographic tour, the William E. Philips discount outlet in Los Angeles might be an unadvertised nationwide trend,

Notes: Week in Business reports that building hit its peak in October and is declining, goes into a bit more detail about the threatened $8 billion Federal deficit next year, and that Howard Hughes is selling his share in RKO. 

Products: What's New reports a pressure-contact wood-on-wood adhesive from Armstrong-Cook Company of Lancaster, a drill/saw combination from Rotex, and a turntable for radios from Furblo, for better reception. Henry Hazlitt's Business Tides isn't going to talk about his recession for obvious reasons, so instead he defends depreciation against allegations that it is a subsidy, coming from assorted greasy and swarthy left wingers. Subsidies are what socialists do! Get it straight! 

Science, Medicine

Newsweek alerts us to the upcoming transit of Mercury. Then it briefly explains the significance of this year's Nobel prize winners, Frederick Zernike and Hermann Staudinger, after tut-tutting the committees for picking older men.

Science Notes of the Week repots Luis Alvarez's latest, the "swindletron," which is a cheaper sort of particle accelerator that "cheats" to get more speed out of them. Rothamsted Experimental Station has found that the reason that aphids stop flying after they give birth is that they digest their own flight muscles. Frank L. Howard of the University of Rhode Island has found that pyridnethiols are a great way to treat cotton threads such that they don't mildew. This year's gypsy moth infestation in New England set a new record by defoliating 1.8 million acres.

"Sightless Motion" There are 308,000 people with less than 20/200 vision in America, and the VA is looking at a new, chest-high "bumper" cane that might give them more mobility, says the Reverend Thomas J. Carroll of the Archdiocese of Boston, who is the head of the archdiocese's Catholic Guild for the Blind and who works out of the family home on various measures to restore mobility to the blind.  At a conference there, he recently blindfolded a group of volunteers to demonstrate that being blind is tough! Newsweek explains at much greater length than it devotes to ophthalmologist Dr. Richard E. Hoover's new cane technique. 

"The Warning Shadow" The lung cancer rate is rising rapidly in America, with smoking and air pollution likely causes. It is estimated that 18,400 men and 3800 women will die of lung cancer in 1953, and although this  has a great deal to do with rising population and life expectancy, the rate is four times higher than twenty years ago, says Dr. Daniel Horn of the American Cancer Society. We should work on reducing smoking, extracting the carcinogens from tobacco, and doing something about air pollution, say various attendees of the recent meeting of the ACS that this story covers. 
Juley, Zorchy and Others.

Art, Radio and Television, Press, Newsmakers

Photographer Peter A. Juley is getting a retrospective show at the Art Students League of New York, being more Time's idea of a great artist than Newsweek's, for example in being dead for seventeen years now. 

"Colour and Tape" RCA and NBC officials visited Hollywood to see a colour television show from New York-produced tape, showing that RCA's new erasable magnetic tape can record both black and white and colour footage, beating Bing (and us) to the punch. Hollywood seems glum about it, because it is worried that it will reduce the value of their black-and-white inventory. The US Steel Hour show, "POW," gets another positive review. It seems like people are inclined to forgive POW "brainwashing" victims. 

Louis Benson Seltzer of the Cleveland Press gets a profile. A story follows the quest to get Willie Calloway out of jail, and the Chicago Daily News's war on slums. 

Governor Battle, the current and past president of the WCTU, David Schine, Zsa Zsa Gabor and George Sanders, and Greer Garson are in the column for the usual reasons. Bob Carney, and Felix Stump are in it because they had to hitch rides back to Pearl after their staff car broke down. The Trufants of Everett, Massachusetts, are in it for having three pairs of twins in a row, all cute as buttons. 

New Films 

How to Marry a Millionaire is the first of Fox's CinemaScope movies for Marilyn Monroe. Since everyone is talking about the Divine Marilyn, so it is interesting to know what Newsweek is going to say. Well, first of all, it tut-tuts such skin as is shown, and then admits that the movie is very funny without for a second acknowledging that Monroe, Bacall, and Betty Hutton had anything to do with it. Crazylegs is a sports biopic from Republic about Elroy Hirsch, with Joan Vohs. Take the High Ground (MGM) is one of those basic training movies where Karl Madden yells at boys until they turn into soldiers and also Elaine Stewart. Paramount's Flight to Tangier was produced to be shown 2D, 3D, regular or widescreen, which is quite an achievement, so you can see why they saved some money by leaving out the plot. 


Jesse Stuart tells a picturesque and strange story of the South in days gone by that you can stack up so high with all the others.  (The Good Spirit of Laurel Ridge.) Rowland Emett gets a collection, Emett's Domain: Trains, Trams, and Englishmen. Major General John Herr and Edward Wallace have Story of the US Cavalry, while Other Books reviews a family novel by Elizabeth Janeway and a Perry Mason murder mystery by Erle Stanley Gardner. 

Raymond Moley turns in a look at the off year elections in Perspective and concluding that they were "No Skirmish," and that the President has to change course and be more conservative if he wants to win next year. 

Aviation Week, 16 November 1953

News Digest reports that the Hughes guided missile factory in Phoenix, Arizona, will not be taken over by the government, and that Eastern has received its first Turbocompound Super-Connies, I guess for nonstop service. (I've never flown the New York-Miami route, which is quite the thing these days.) 

Industry Observer reports that Convair has split its "weapon system" contract for the B-58 into two halves, with Emerson to do the weapons and Sylvania the detection equipment, replacing GE, which was going to subcontract the whole thing before negotiations broke down. De Havilland is rolling out the first Comet 3s and has finalised some production design details, including adopting elliptical windows rather than the double-paned favoured by the CAA. Pentagon aid money for offshore fighter procurement will focus on all-weather types rather than day fighters from now on, as we have enough of those. Propeller manufacturers have won some concessions in terms of getting high power turboprop engines assigned to them for ongoing development. The CAA is cracking down on the rules for self-certifying small helicopters. That's why there's so many weird helicopter designs around! Allison says that the J35 is actually pretty reliable these days, and Lockheed and Republic point out that most of the Korean War Air Force jet sorties were byF-80s and F-84s. The MoS has shelved plans for a Hunter with the sweepback increased to 50 degrees and 10,000lbs thrust from the Avon 14 when the prototype was almost complete, suggesting that a new Swift might be on the table instead. Piasecki's third prototype of some helicopter that absolutely will appear really soon will have the Allison T56 turboprop that absolutely will be working reliably soon. Anyone who says different is a big giant poo-poo head. (To quote your grandson on a related subject.)
A record it held 26 days last month before the F-100D beat it.

Katherine Johnsen's Washington Observer reports that Admiral Carney is fighting Wilson over the cancellation of an atomic power plant for aircraft carriers, arguing that all major ships should be atom powered from now on. The Pentagon is arguing about whether continental air defence should be built from the frontiers outwards, or from the frontiers inwards. Current air strength proposals are 127 wings (Wilson promises 115 by mid '54), 16 carrier air groups next year. The Office of Defence Mobilisation thinks it is being ignored these days, the railroads are mobilising to fight the new round of air mail subsidies, the CAA thinks that President Hoover's recommendation to eliminate a bunch of independent agencies because there are just too many of them around these days is stupid, and there may be even more Defence under-secretaries soon. 

Robert Hotz reports for Aviation Week that "Air Policy Study Sidesteps Military Issues" which is a story about how the aircraft industry thinks that there will be a disastrous crack-up of the industry if someone doesn't think of their needs for  more money soon. The CAA is continuing to trim its budget, offload costs, and lay off staff. GM has gone from leasing Willow Run's vacant floor space to buying the whole darn thing. Kaiser will shift auto manufacturing to the Toledo plant, which is largely idle. Uncle Henry gets out from under almost $20 million in government loans this way. Igor Stroukoff is negotiating for a development contract for a C-123 prototype with boundary layer control based on an earlier one for a C-123 with hydroski iundercarriage. Canada is fighting with the CAB over stuff that seems like cabotage. More Air Force spending cuts seem in the offing due to "closer fiscal control." 

"AF Permits First Look at Pratt and Whitney J57" It's a 10,000lb engine two years ahead of the British, the manufacturer says. Considering that the Olympus is running at an official rating of 9750lb and the Avon 14 at 9500lbs, even Aviation Week thinks this is a bit much. The major detail in print is that the J57, like the Olympus, has a "split" compressor. North American and Douglas are said to be continuing to chase a speed record for the F-100 and Skyrocket, respectively. No-one is taking airplanes to vacation in America because they can't get dollars, say the airlines. The Air National Guard is receiving its first F-86s, stalls continue to lead non-airline crash totals,  San Diego is getting a big air show, Italian parliamentarians are  sticking up for Italian aviation by trying to squeeze out the foreign capital that controls Alitalia and ALI.

This is what it looks like when you're a sucker and pay for your advertising space
David A. Anderton reports for Aeronautical Engineering on "How Air France Comet Training Works," which just means printing the pilot training curriculum verbatim, then giving some commentary. Since that doesn't take all the space, the editor calls Lockheed and gets a blurb on some glide tests they're doing on a Lodestar with cleaner engine cowling. That still isn't enough, so it's on to an LA Chamber of Commerce blurb reporting that  aircraft  is the biggest industry in California once you define "industry" to leave out all the bigger ones. (Hollywood manufactures films. That's just what it does!) 

What's New reports about brochures about guided missile power generators, electronic induction heating for metal furnaces, ducting for jet aircraft for assorted hotelling services, Twin Manufacturing's aircraft tooling capabilities, the excellent boxes available from Zero Manufacturing, facilities for making silicone rubber bits available at Goshen Rubber,, shockproof helmets from General Textiles, structural latches for aircraft from Simmonds, cutting-off wheels and spindles from Norton Manufacturing, ground generators, cherry blind rivets, and electric clutch controls from three different manufacturers (including Honeywell, so  not small fry), all in the same paragraph just because, Wirelon ropes, ultrasonic meters, lightweight magnesium plate. That's all information about these products, and not advertising at all! 

Production has a pictorial of the rebuilt Boeing C-97 that Temco is turning out for medical flights. Then Avro Canada wants us to know about its technique of using resin impregnators in magnesium gearbox castings,and a GE engineer accidentally said something nice about British jet engines. David Cochran will be shot at dawn. Production Briefing reports that Hillier has built its 500th helicopter, some companies have subcontracts, American Helicopter Corporation has bought Piasecki.

Philip Klass reports for Avionics that "AEEC Acts on Avionic Problems" Specifically, the Airlines Electronic Engineering Conference likes the new cockpit phone system, Selcall.  The CAA has issued new regulations easing ramp tesdting of omnirange receivers, new airline radio rack designs with better cooling are in the offing, the AEEC passed on making recommendations for DME equipment, because, while useful, it is hard to maintain right now due to lack of suitable test equipment. It did, however, recommend a new 360 channel airborne VHF communication system. More frequencies are to be set aside for all the ILS systems coming into use. Filter Centre reports that Smiths is looking into US production (and presumably use) of its SEP2 autopilot, in use on the Comet, has a nice brochure on hand about transistors, write GE for your copy today, and unveils a 360 channel Collins VHF receiver with 50kHz spacing. 
How a company can blow an industry-dominating position this quickly 
is beyond me. And it's not just them. 

Convair reports for Equipment that "Animated Panels Explain Convair 340" Just what we needed, comic-book level operator's guides for the 340 for foreign pilots.AiResearch wants us to know that its new turbines catch fire far less often. Atlas Powder reports that Atlas Powder's new oil additive inhibits engine rust. 

New Aviation Products has a "small compressor for pneumatic systems" from Rhodes Lewis, am adjustable control bar for presses, from Danly Machine Specialities, an absolutely explosion-proof polyphase ac motor from GE, and a self-timing welder that eliminates the need for wall timing. Airlines has a bit where the industry takes Piasecki aside and explains what it  needs to do to make helicopter passenger air transport practical. A reliable, thirty-seat, fast helicopter. Can do? Then talk to us! 

Robert H. Wood's Editorial hasn't much to talk about, so it gets back to running down the railways, which really do have no future in passenger transport, he thinks, secrecy, which is still stupid, and the CAA and CAB, which are still corrupt. 



This is Malcolm Sr., Malcolm's Dad. Malcolm Sr. was
Chairman of the board of Newsweek.
C. Jay Walker of Hammond, Oregon and Robert Fairbank of Moro Bay, California, really liked Daniel Richberg's letter about how economic aid and allies are bad, and we need a real, patriot government that can declare foreign parts illegal and be done with it. F. H. Barksdale of Lexington, Virginia, thinks that symphony music does more for the world than a bomb. S. Stewart Brooke points out that smoking in the classroom was already the rule at Yale thirty years ago, and he is amazed that this pleasant custom" has taken thirty  years to reach the West Coast. Many, many corrrespondents point out that modern college kids are progressive and even liberal, and one points out that it's because they can't exactly take moral lessons from their elders, because whoo, boy! The editor of Parents writes to point out that their circulation is up even more than the Newsweek story says, because everyone is just so darn serious about parenting these days. For Your Information catches us up with the promotions of Chet Shaw and John Denson down at the office. "Senior editor Malcolm Muir, formerly in chare of The Periscope and Business," has also been promoted, or possibly kicked up stairs. Which is too bad. I will miss his wacky ways and his ability to write entire Trends columns that don't say anything and don't need summarising. (Except to say, "This time the Administration has it right."  

The Periscope reports that the President may have to call Congress back to deal with raising the debt limit, and that Canadians were disappointed by his recent visit. "Some Treasury people" are now fingering the FBI for not cooperating in building a case against Harry Dexter White. Which, if these people know the story of why the FBI couldn't cooperate, seems like a pretty nasty thing to do to some pretty nasty people. So two wrongs making a right for a change? The Army is keeping mum about some 300 Red defectors crossing the demilitarised zone in Korea, while The Periscope reports that five more of the POWs who originally rejected repatriation, have changed their mind, and that there is "fighting" going on amongst the Americans still held. It is reported that the atom bombs dropped on Japan were dubbed "Fat Man" and "Thin Man" after Churchill and FDR, respectively. The Russians are increasingly worried about their alliance with China. Adlai Stevenson is getting more and more critical of the President in his speeches, and speaking of which, it is reported that that valise that is carried around with the President wherever he goes contains Western novels, not top-secret documents. The Communist Party of the USA is splitting into three factions over how it should fight anti-Red measures. (Spend on young communists, spend on defending leaders on trial, back front organisations.)  Russian observers have been invited to the atomic test set for Eniwetok next month. Doctors will not be drafted next year, and the Russians have been reported to have reopened the German missile works at Peenemünde, where they are working on an improved version of the German Wasserfall rocket. It is reported that NATO planes are being packed together on European airfields because they are expected to be able to take off before an airstrike reaches them. The Kremlin is boasting that the Western trade embargo is breaking down as they sign 25 more trade agreements. Continuing fighting between Indonesian troops and "Chinese rebels" is reported in north Sumatra. Is Newsweek  dumb, or just confused because both "Achinese" and "Chinese" look similar?  The Reds may be offering Europe atomic power plants, and may have discovered oil in western China, both of which developments are sinister and bad. 

On the Hollywood beat, the boss's son (it turns out Malcolm Muir, Sr. is the big cheese at Newsweek) reports that James Mason is starring in a CinemaScope remake of Svengali, MGM is seeking Ramon Novarro, Francis X. Bushman, May McAvoy, and Carmel Myers for roles in Ben Hur, a musical based on Hilton's Lost Horizons is the big Broadway musical for the spring, NBC is putting six Robert Sherwood plays in the Milton Berle slot in the spring, Joan Bennett is working on six half-hour shows for something called Screen Star Review, and Edward Arnold will play a blind detective with a seeing eye dog in a new half hour show. Where Are They Now reports that Pappa Boyington is on the sales staff of a southern California brewery, Gabby Hartnett is 52 and is a successful businessman who seems to own half the businesses in Lincolnwood, outside of Chicago. 

The point of the bit about Silent era stars being "sought" for Ben Hur were all in the original cast. McAvoy is the only "get' per their Wiki biographies, so I haven't linked to the Ramon Novarro entr per my format here. But check it out for an outrageous mid-Seventies scandal. The rest of it is all the nepo baby blowing it as usual. I can't rule out that Anderson plays ran in the Berle slot over the summer, but it doesn't seem likely. Enjoy this clip from Commando Cody, which did debut on NBC this year.
The Periscope Washington Trends reports that various prominent Republicans have assured the President that the "Truman-Brownell row over the Harry Dexter White case" is all the ammunition he needs for the next two years. It will completely make up for needing Democrats in Congress to actually pass his legislation, the GOP in Congress being determined to blow up the deficit with tax cuts and farm aid, his difficulties getting trade liberalisation through, his attempts to get out from under Taft-Hartley, the AEC's effort to  not give the entire atomic candy store away to private power, and Hawaiian statehood. (Unlikely this session, we're told.)

National Affairs

"Stake in White Case: Victory in 1954" We're apparently going to dance around the Soviet diplomatic decryptions behind the White case for an entire year, romping to victory in the '54 midterms on the strength of the Administration's fervent anti-Communism without a single downside on the McCarthy front. Which is great news for the Republicans, since the worrywarts are saying that the election will go on the pocketbook and there's a slump on the way, and when we're all "Heil McCarthying" in 1957, at least we'll have the consolation that the President had a friendly Congress in '55. Also, we shouldn't forget that there are still plenty of people in the Administration who hate  Herb Brownell.

"Red Network in Government: Story Without End?" Yes, yes, it will be. Although the "story" here is a three page potted history of Soviet espionage in America highlighting their successes during the Great Depression, which, I don't know, "Eisenhower Depression," anyone? 

"Muted Monmouth?" With the McCarthy Committee hearings on the Fort Monmouth investigation going on behind closed doors, there have been plenty of rumours about what it has found. This week, the Army's own investigation laid out the  headline finding: No espionage, except perhaps a bit just after the war, associated with the Rosenberg ring. The 8000 Fort Monmouth employees have generated 167 security cases and 33 suspensions but none permanent so far, and none on espionage-related charges. McCarthy's position is that this proves the need for a public inquiry. Vincent Hallinan is guilty of tax evasion, and Ernest K. Lindell uses Washington Tides to argue that the Brownell/Truman/White "fuss" is "A Political Blunder," with Republicans entering into "a conspiracy to make Harry S.[sic] Truman President again."

The Truce

"Korea Bunkers: Winter Watch" Nothing much is happening in Korea, but some of the nothing is being done by the Reds in a sinister way, hence the story. And a baby born in the "pro-Communist" detention camp run by the Indians won't have to attend the UN "explainer" sessions, but instead will go wherever their mother goes. Which adds colour to a story about 22 Americans, one Briton and 333 South Koreans being held at that camp. 


"Crackdown in the Middle East: Red-Inspired Iranians Retreat" General Zahredi sent his troops into the Teheran bazaar to repress the massive strike that was entirely caused by "nationalist extremists and Reds in favour of ousted Premier Mohammed Mossadegh." Or by Mossasdegh's "antics" at his trial. Either way, the 218 people detained and three people were killed by police gunfire had it coming, and it seems as though the Americans and British are fighting over who gets a larger share of Iranian oil. Meanwhile, the Sudanese national election is full of the zany behaviour of colourful Africans and the outrageous cheating of the Egyptians. Prince Charles has had a birthday, getting a toy car he can actually drive, but no sign of his parents, who are off on a trip to Australia. In Trieste oh go away! The Big Three meeting in Bermuda is a month away, and the Chinese have made it clear that the Russians are not to do anything that would upset Peking. But Churchill is eager to meet with Eisenhower and pass on the torch, even if the British are starting to chum up with Japan, and we know how that ends! Ramon Magsaysay has won the election in the Philippines, and Newsweek visits with Soviet diplomatic staff in New York to see what is up with them. Not much, except Semyon Tsarapkin almost arrested Newsweek and sent him off to the Lubyanka by parcel post after Newsweek inadvertently let it slip that he was a Russian emigre. Very dramatic! (It turns out that Newsweek's man was Leon Volkov, who I cannot believe went unrecognised by the staff before he pronounced "Ukraine" wrong.)
Eisenhower's address to Parliament headlines this week's Canadian Affairs page, but Governor-General Massey's pomposity isn't missed. 


The Periscope Business Trends reports that there is going to be a slump next year. It is natural and inevitable and nothing to get alarmed about. Remember that the US population, now nearly 161 million, will be 175 million by 1960, that new families will grown in number from 45 million to 51 million, and industries that cater to teenage needs stand to be good business for the next while.

"Rising Crisis for US Industry: Brains --And How to Get Them" Keep promoting the boss's son? It's always worked before! Anyway, a bunch of business leaders and smooth talkers got together for a conference in Sulphur Springs the other week to talk it over. 

"Plugs" CBS is really promoting itself these days! 

Products: What's New reports Eastman Kodak's new halftone negatives suitable for photographic reproduction in periodicals, which can now be produced without special engraving screens or cameras. Aluminum Products of New York has an ironing board cover which can reduce the length of time required for ironing by a quarter by holding heat better. Storz Brewing of Omaha, Nebraska, has a "calorie controlled" beer in 8oz cans. 

The 1954 Nash line is out, with price cuts of from $14 to $161, with the Rambler Suburban four-door only $1945 to the Ambassador Country Club's $2745 with Dual Powerflyte engine. 

Notes: Week in Business reports that Hilton is building a hotel in Egypt, Lockheed is forming a separate division to produce guided missiles, and the nation's production of goods and services dropped to an annual rate of $369 billion, a drop of almost 10% from last quarter and the first drop in three-and-a-half years. 

Henry Hazlitt's Business Tides has this little matter of the slump that Henry has been calling for for eight years at the doorstep, so it is time to advocate "For a Responsible Budget," where he explains that Congress' insouciant failure to authorise an increase in the debt limit during the summer is no big deal because Congress can now demand that the Administration get rid of the deficit in return for the spending authorisation. But that's only a stopgap, and Henry wants a tiny little constitutional amendment to stop Congress from ever increasing spending on top of an Administration budget ever again. They have it in Britain, after all! As compensation for giving up its most basic constitutional power, Henry proposes that Congress get a different power to reduce spending.

Science, Medicine, Education

"Tornado Killers?" Two Air Force tornado researchers, Fritz O. Rossman and Rollins H. Mayer, have presented a new theory of "torpedo structure" according to which they can be taken apart by explosive missiles fired by airplanes, and that the Air Force should position some tornado-fighting jets near every major city. "Weather experts aren't accepting the Rossman-Mayer theory without controversy," Newsweek goes on, but R. H. Simpson of the Weather Bureau says it has "an open mind about this." One thing that there are no open minds about is AD-X2, which definitely isn't good for batteries.  

"Mass Polio Test" The first mass inoculation public trials of the polio vaccine developed by Jonas Salk will be made in February. The killed-virus vaccine is the safest one so far developed. Meanwhile, claims to have finally identified the polio vaccine have been registered by Dr. A. R. Taylor of Parke, Davis, and Dr. Wendell M. Stanley of the University of Southern California[!] 

"What Pilot Failure Is" Commander Norman Lee Barr, a navy flight surgeon and head of the Aviation Medicine Division at Bethesda, is looking into it by wiring up pilots with remote sensors like they were a test plane. He seems to be mainly interested in high-stress pullouts that may lead to pilot blackouts. 

Newsweek visits a colourful one-room schoolhouse in Oregon, the Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship, and the 84 jammed schools for the children of US soldiers in Europe. (It's Army, only.) 

Art, Press, Radio and Television, Newsmakers

Newsweek does a story about Photography's "International Picture Contest," which pays a total of $25,000 in US Savings Bonds (current value $18,750), and gave out 280 prizes to the 31,000 amateur photographers who submitted 91,000 pictures for this year's ninth annual contest. Some prize winners are printed, including Farrell Grehan's $2000 top prize winner. 

"Off the Beat" The President's Armistice Day news conference, the one where the White case was revealed, was the wildest Presidential press conference ever. At least, James Reston says, it proves that Adlai Stevenson is wrong when he says that there is a "one-party press." Forward is a magazine for British West Africa, to be produced by Wolfgang Foges, and Quentin ReynoldsThe Man Who Couldn't Talk has been revealed to be pure fiction spun by a Canadian fabulist. Which seems like letting Reynolds off the hook a bit.

Newsweek catches us up with the British debate over commercial television, yeah or nay, a graphic closed-circuit medical tv show out of Salt Lake City for professional education of small-town Utah doctors, and the strange situation of Channel 10, Phoenix, which is being run by two rival radio stations, KOY and KOOL.  

The column is all news (by its standards) this week. A crazy lady from the Illinois GOP women's auxiliary is trying to get Robin Hood banned from the library for being some kind of Communist. Hell, Norway is in for its ridiculous name, Frank Stanton of NBC for resigning from his college fraternity because it won't drop a restrictive "'racial'" clause, as Newsweek delicately puts it. Joe Louis is punch drunk. Audrey Hepburn doesn't have much decolletage. (Rude!) Censors try to stop a performance of Streetcar Named Desire in New Jersey, and make RKO take cuss words out of a Korean war movie. Marion Anderson will be allowed to perform in a Baltimore venue after all, and out of all those column inches, only Barbara Hutton and Esperanza (Chata) Wayne uphold the tradition of being seen in print by virtue of being famous or formerly married to famous people.

Mamie Eisenhower is 57, Virginia Mayo has had a baby, Randy Turpin is married; Harrison Williams, Frank Jewett Mather, Princess Irene of Prussia, and Dr. Herbert Ives have died.

New Films

The Man Between is a British spy thriller/romance starring Claire Bloom and is well acted and directed but let down by a bad story. The Glass Web is out from Universal-International although the foreign connection isn't clear to me and apparently it does a disappointing job with the exciting concept of a murder at a television studio, even with Edward G. Robinson as the villain. Disney's Living Desert is a pretty good documentary. Warner's Calamity Jane features Doris Day, "one of the most aggressively healthy women in Hollywood," having to hit the same energy levels as Betty Hutton to turn the heroine into a romantic lead. I guess the moral is that it's an okay movie if you like Doris Day?

What even is this?


No reviews this week, as instead we get a long profile of James Jones of From Here to Eternity fame, with a clear subtext of "Why don't you save the publishing industry again, Jim?" Look Jim can't help it if America is too busy with bedtime stories to read a novel or see a movie these days! 

Speaking of being too tired to hold up your end, here's Raymond Moley jumping on the Harry Dexter White case at Perspective. "Has anyone else tried the "type White's Who's Who entry into the magazine? No? Here it is, I'm off to lunch. And, yes, I do know it's 9:30 in the morning. Don't wait up!"  

Aviation Week, 23 November 1953

News Digest reports that Slick is selling two DC-6As to a French firm, that the DC-7s' CAA certification comes just 22 months after the company agreed to build the plane, a new record, that Curtiss-Wright will be building the Turbocompound on a new "semi-automatic" assembly line in New Jersey, that MATS is very safe, and Douglas delivered its second DC-6B to Japan Air Lines this week. 

Katherine Johnsen's Washington Roundup reports that one of the reasons for President Eisenhower's visit to Canada was to discuss Arctic defence and the DEW line, that CAB is not being probed by anyone in the government because it is just fine, says Undersecretary Robert Murray, that future development of the XB-58 will be affected by General LeMay's demand for a jet fuel tanker to support jet bombers, that Air Material Command and Air Research and Development Command are locked in a bitter feud, that no new developments in offshore aircraft procurement will be outlined before spring,  that Senator McCarthy will not be investigating any aircraft factories in his current round of factory visits, that experimental airmail operations have been a great success, that overwork at the Air Staff could be helped by putting someone in charge of planning overwork, that the Korean air lift was a great success, that Westinghouse isn't going to e allowed to move its jet factor to Kansas City from Pennsylvania. 

Industry Observer reports that Convair's F-102 is pretty fast, that Sabena is buying some helicopters (again), that all the helicopter companies are working on "flying cranes" like the Hughes XH-17, that the Navy is giving up on the T40, but the J73 is coming right along, that Convair will be working on the atomic plane project, Lockheed has a ramjet test aircraft in development, the F-101 will have a retractile refuelling probe, the F-84F will get a slab, all-flying tail, that Bristol is reviving its tiny Saturn turbojet for the Folland Gnat lightweight fighter. 

NACA reports for Aviation Week  that "NACA Takes Over X-3 Testing Programme" The Air Force has given up on the Douglas X-3, so NACA will complete the testing programme. Oh, have you heard that the Skyrocket is super-duper fast and amazing and incredible! Because I can stencil it on your forehead in reverse so you can read the story every time you brush your teeth and then you will feel just like me! Also it says here that "Stiff Fight Brews on Air Defence" Congress now has seven different reports, all making differing recommendations, to consider. It is now reported that the F-86Ds being built in Italy will cost a cool million bucks each once everyone has taken their cut, compared with a flyaway cost of $420,000 for the Gloster Javelins once proposed. 

Lee Moore reports on the new CAA "open door" policy in "Blackout Lifted," the CAA and the military are fighting over whether to scrap the 450 existing DME stations in favour of a new military design, or  upgrading them to the new DME plus VOR standard. California Central Airways is working ona financing plan to buy some second-hand 2-0-2s. Fairchild is still shopping its jet transport around, and "Industry Warns: New Planes Need More Titanium." So in other words, when it is real news, Newsweek scoops Aviation Week. 

Your (CIA) tax dollars at work!
NACA (hey, why not write the whole issue for them?) reports for Aeronautical Equipment that "NACA Reveals Crash Data to Industry" I guess because it was Top Secret President's Eyes Only before? Anyway, NACA has been smashing old planes into runways to see what happens for some time now, just like my son. And just like my son, it wants to show everybody.Thrust and Drag reports that Thrust and Drag has nothing to say this week, so here are the jokes its planning to use at the fraternity party this weekend. Helio Transport wants us to know that it has a six-place twin under development based on its Courier. Pulsometer of England is working on a tiny tiny air turbine for pumping gas in jet aircraft. Dr. Kurt Tank is now working on a four-Avon, forty-seat passenger jet that will make 600mph, with engines in a "revolutionary" position. That's almost 1000lb thrust per passenger! No wonder it'll make 600mph! Or, it would if Tank had access to a billion-dollar wind tunnel to design it. 

Lockheed reports for Production that "Waffles Stiffen Highspeed Structures" This is a new lining for stiffened panels that seems to be better than all the other ones, here are three pages of narrative and lots of graphs to demonstrate this vital achievement in the field of making thick fuselage sections slightly stronger maybe. Besides, it is good practice in precision forging, and that's important! Bobbin and Shuttle Corporation reports that "Wood Laminate used in Aircraft Tooling" Hydulignum, the British high density wood laminate licensed in America by Bobbin and Shuttle, is great in tooling because it can be handled like wood, in other words, carpenters can build precision jigs with it. L. O. Koven has a completely different kind of impregnator for sealing "micro-porosity in cast electronic and aircraft products." It sounds like porosity, in magnesium castings and otherwise, is getting to be a bit of a problem! 

Philip Klass reports for Avionics that "Vibragyro Takes Cue From Housefly" Sperry's latest gyro uses a tuning fork instead of a rotating mass to measure angular velocity, this being presumably the same as the way that houseflies orient themselves by vibrating their antenna. Sperry has patented this as the "Gyrotron," although Smith's previously tried to  use it in the SEP-1 before switching to conventional gyros. Sperry has been working on vibrating gyros since 1937, and a 1946 article in the trade press suggested that they'd given up on the line, but they like it for sensitivity, wide range, ruggedness, single-axis sensitivity (so that vibrations don't get "counted in" as rotation) and miniaturisation potential. The article gives a very brief, nonmathematical explanation for how it works (a full account is appearing in the engineering literature this month), before going on to explain how data is picked off (with a torsion bar), and some of the developmental problems.

Filter Centre reports that Hydro-Aire is working on a pump-metering device that will use transistors of its own manufacture, the Bureau of Standards is continuing to work with the "tinkertoy" electronics assembly method, GE has added a five-electrode triode to its Five-Star reliability offerings, The Institute of Radio Engineers is looking to recruit from a broader range, Honeywell's new high-powered transistor can handle up to 20 watts, Lord Brabazon illustrates the growth of British avionics by pointing out that the Hampden used 56lbs of electronics equipment and 8 tubes, while the Valiant has 3.5 tons of electronics including a thousand valves and thirteen miles of wiring. Victory Engineering has a booklet about its thermistors out,  the Bristol Corporation of Connecticut wants us to know about its multiplex telemetering, DuMont's new dual-bam CRT is described extensively in a booklet available from Du Mont, while Gamewell's booklet describes its precision potentiometers. 

George L. Christian visits Northeast Airlines for Equipment to find out how "NEA Solves Shorthaul Problems." It likes its Goodrich tyres and Pesco pumps for reliability and ease of maintenance and has an ignition analyzer and some other fixed plant, like a supercharger test stand. NWA wants us to know that it has an inspection procedure that licks wing bolt corrosion in the bud. Northwest has emergency cabin lights that last 30 minutes after a power outage while Pacific Airmotive has licensed some British Godfrey cabin pressurisation equipment.  New Aviation Products headlines a Texas metal loading ramp designed for all US 4-engined transports, while GE's Transformer-rectifier is a great airborne DC source and United has a regulator that guards hydraulic pressure on the F-84F. 

And GE will get the JT3D in service within five years. I think the issue is that 
the builders don't want existing turbojet projects scrapped while they wait
William J. Coughlin reports for Air Transport that "AA Calls the Ducted Fan Key to Jet Airliners: But Builders Say Proposed Turbine is Years Away" George Snyder of Boeing agrees that the turboprop has no future in transport aircraft, but thinks that, as quoted, the ducted fan is years away. "Rumour has it --and all we know is what we read in the British press-- that an engine of this general nature is under development in England by a company of very good reputation," said Kelly Johnson. And by "rumour" I think he means the actual Rolls-Royce Conway intended for the actual V1000 and VC7. Honestly, the aviation press! Things are secret long after they stop being secret, and news long after they stop being news. I think it's because they spend so much time recopying each other's press releases and so little time actually reading. The washout of the turboprop is the other interesting part of the article. Essentially, controlling the prop is just too hard. THANK YOU! Speaking of stale news, Our Nat has an explainer about the Aquila bid for the Saro Princess. 

Robert H. Wood's Editorial explains that the "cargo airlines" need to fight for their existence now that the airmail subsidy will give the "grandfather lines" such a boost.  


Several correspondents liked the article about that local paper that got in Press the other day. The Governor of Wyoming writes in to tell us that rodeo is a mighty fine sport. Everyone in the Pacific Northwest liked the Pacific Northwest story. Jean Markham of Philadelphia writes to point out that Newsweek got the B-57 confused with the B-66. It can now be told that Ivan Volkov was the reporter who visited the Soviet delegation at home in New York. I mean, besides the byline last issue. Our photographer was Ed Wergeles, and we're reminded that the real story is that Newsweek has a Russian emigre on his staff who is practically Red Public Enemy Number 1. 

John T. Scopes, but the hat's the star
The Periscope reports that Elizabeth Bentley's secret testimony has implicated a high-ranking official of a friendly government, so her testimony has been locked up in a very special box. White House insiders are clear that the real problem in the off-year elections was the RNC. The Administration has apparently decided that tax cuts are more important than deficits. Finland, it is feared, will slip behind the Iron Curtain after an economic collapse this winter. John Abt and Victor Perlo are still communists. The British are demanding much too much Iranian oil. The Army is demanding too many men in talks about slicing up the available manpower, and the Navy and Air Force are outraged. Walter Bedell-Smith is likely to be the next Administration official to resign, and when he goes, so will Ambassador Davies. Vice-President Nixon has not persuaded the Japanese to re-arm, in spite of reports to the contrary. Thievery is "rampant" at US Army bases in Korea. Secretary McKay is trying to get the government out of Indian band affairs, the US is concerned that the Reds are building a network of radio jamming stations, more trouble is expected behind the Iron Curtain, a "high Polish Communist official" says that the Soviets are getting ready to attack, people are starting to think that IQ tests don't actually tell you very much, narcotics use amongst youth seems to be in decline.

Rodgers and Hammerstein are making a musical out of Cannery Row, Orson Welles is set to portray King Farouk in a movie, Danny Kaye will be Maurice Chevalier in Man from Montmartre. Where Are They Now catches up with John Scopes (Monkey Trial), who is a geologist for United Gas in Shreveport and tells Newsweek that friends who know about it never bring it up in his presence. (Translated: "Go away, Newsweek!") 

The Periscope Washington Trends reports that "No matter how reluctantly Eisenhower goes along with it, you can be certain that 'crime, corruption, and Communism' will be the Republican slogan again in 1954." Republicans have lots of ammunition they haven't used yet. For example, they have enough for impeachment proceedings against Justice Clark. There will probably be more anti-Communist legislation, although even J. Edgar Hoover doesn't want the Communist Party banned. The main concern is that the "right wing" will run away with the party. 

National Affairs

"The President Up to Date: His Health and His Mood" The President is in excellent health, especially his cardiovascular system, and he is in a good mood, although a very serious one. Meanwhile the Senate now wants to look into Harold Glasser and talk to Igor Gouzenko. The Monmouth hearings are still not going anywhere, the Navy wants us to look at the Skyrocket, damn it, not all those Air Force planes that are so damned fast because the Air Force didn't put all its money on Westinghouse rolling boxcars. J. Edgar Hoover is going to have to testify in the White hearings, so he gets out in front of the story barrelling at him with a two-page box story, even better than the usual one-pagers. Art Samish is guilty of tax evasion, juvenile delinquency is bad, and it was so much fun cleaning up for J. Edgar this issue that Newsweek does it again for poor, misunderstood Ezra Taft Benson, who, it is pointed out, is getting advice from people besides God, Who is somewhat unreliable on farm price supports. Ernest K. Lindley summarises the White case so far for Washington Tides, leaving aside the decryptions, there was, in fact, no definite evidence that White was a spy in 1946, and so the Truman haters are going to have to find something else to hang on him. 

Weather reports that the strangely warm, wet, and sometimes and smoggy weather is likely to continue to Christmas. 


"Stronger Outer Defences: A Bargain in the Making" John Foster Dulles denies that the US is negotiating for air bases in Pakistan, but Newsweek is very excited by the prospects of an anti-Soviet wall extending through Turkey, Iran, and Pakistan. 

The East Germans are having a spy ring trial. Georges Bidault's collapse while addressing the National Assembly is no big deal, unlike the Drummond triple murder. Stalin's corpse, entombed with Lenin's, has had a touch-up, while honestly nothing much is going on in Korea, although the official American death toll is likely to be more than 30,000 out of 142,277 casualties. The American handyman who inherited the Dunbar baronetcy (of Mochrum, there being five in total, says Who's Who) is living in the caretaker's cottage and trying to grasp what he has gotten into, the mansion being in ruins and all. I'm now officially filing "Big Three --Bermuda" stories with "Trieste" stories. Indian Communists are saying nice things about Nehru so he'll probably go Red any day now. Remember how Time thought he was such a pinko for trying to stop the Korean War?

Milton Eisenhower returns from Latin America with the news that Latin American countries expect too much from America, which on the other hand could do  more. Mexico's annual Pan American road rally is running an even higher death toll than last year, the latest and fifth death being Italian driver Giuseppe Scotuzzi, and that was just the first day! Bolivia had an attempted revolt last week, put down by a miner's militia armed with dynamite sticks. Latins are so colourful! 


The Periscope Business Trends reports that even though there are even more signs of a business slump, "[i]t's significant that many realistic businessmen are betting big that the Administration's optimism about the future is justified." On the bright side, there's an entire story about how deflation is going to cut the price of this and that, if you're lucky enough to still have a job!

Notes: Week in Business reports that rail loadings are down for the fourth consecurtive week, American's first non-stop coast-to-coast flight hit a record time of 6h 40 minutes, Fairchild's M-186 jetliner is just around the corner, titanium has been placed under control, because production is not meeting demand for the strategic metal, incomes are up, Idaho Power is launching a ten-year expansion plan. 

Pabst is building a brewery in Los Angeles, and the new Studebaker fall line is out. The high lights are better brakes and lots of chrome! Congress heard from foreigners that high US tariffs mean high tariffs against US goods. 

"This Rich and Changing World" Highlights from a recent study of this title published by the Twentieth Century Fund include: World output of steel will continue to grow; there's lots of coal and oil, especially in North America; of a billion workers in the world, 530  million are in agriculture; the trend for people to concentrate in cities is slowing down; the world has 10 billion acres of forest, which is a lot, but only a fifth is properly managed, which isn't a lot.

Products: What's New reports the smallest, cheapest flashbulb yet, from GE; table salt from seawater that won't cake, from Trace Elements, of Houston; a universal mixer pigment that can be added to any kind of paint, varnish, or enamel, from Keystone Paint and Varnish. 

This week, Henry avoids talking about his slump by devoting Business Tides to "White's Mischief Lives On." Specifically, he created the IMF, and it is bad and wrong. 

Science, Medicine

"Counterfeit" Piltdown Man, the prehistoric English fossil, long believed to be a hoax, has been confirmed as such by Dr. K. P. Oakley of the British Museum and Professors J. S. Weiner and W. E. Le Clark of Oxford, using a test that dates fossil remains based on their uptake of fluoride, showing that the bones were no more than 50,000 years old, and furthermore had been modified. As to who did it, no-one wants to point fingers, since it must have been a scientist and an Old Boy.

"Rigg's: A Winning Fight on 'Nervous Breakdown'" Austen Riggs' therapy resort in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, gets some attention. Three pates worth!  

Art, Press, Radio and Television, Newsmakers

Art reviews Simon and Shuster's Best Cartoons from France. Oh, those French!

Press gives the "Spy Case" a full page reviewing press coverage, which seems split on party and regional lines. James Wechsler's The Age of Suspicion is a memoir of his time as a young communist but also a reflection on our anti-Communist era. Too much suspicion! Speaking of which, The Freeman has a story quoting several anonymous ex-Soviet doctors who think that Stalin was clinically paranoid. 

Everyone still loves Arthur Godfrey, no matter what you've heard to the contrary, and some people say there's too many tear-jerking stories about hard luck cases on the TV these days. 

Sir Pierson Dixon, Ed Dickinson, the Presidents of Yale and Harvard, Casey Stengel, Ed Cantor, Marilyn Monroe and the President are in the column because they are famous. Milton Berle is engaged, Susan Hayward and Robert Sweeny are divorced (not from each other); Edwin Fleischmann, Arthur George Waters and E. W. Palmer have died. Alger Hiss has been turned down for parole. 

The New Films

Paul Muni returns for Universal (albeit in an Italian production) in Stranger on the Prowl, which is picturesque and artistically bleak, but makes no sense. Genevieve is another British import about a vehicle with a lot of personality, only instead of the Titfield Thunderbolt, it's a car, and it is almost as much fun. MGM's Easy to Love  is an Esther Williams movie, so you know what you're getting. Wet!



The last volume of Churchill's history of the Second World War is out, and so is the third volume of Bruce Catton's history of the Army of the Potomac. They're okay if you like that sort of thing. A collection of William Sansom short stories set in wintery, cold, northerly places, and a Jack Schaefer (Shane) novel make the Other Books column.

Aviation Week, 30 November 1953

News Digest reports that US airpower now runs to 92,000 aircraft, and that's about it. Industry Observer reports that the world speed record race continues. No, in fact, it is over. The F-100 won. Live with it! Viscounts are damn good planes. Avionics manufacturers still can't do rugged and cheap for guided missiles. English Electric's proposal for a DC-3 replacement  uses two Double Mambas and so might qualify as a twin-engined plane or not. I can see that being an issue when the DC-3 replacement shows up, any day now! The USAF hasn't made any statements about the latest loss of an X-5 except to say that it is really, really tired of stupid X-planes, here NACA, you have them. In a scoop from five years ago, "American and British designers are looking at gas generators" for helicopters, convertiplanes, and some conventional planes. Fairey is planning a large aircraft around this principle, which is true, but the idea of anyone else taking up Dutch oven engines seems a bit crazy to me. W. E. W. Petter is working on a "carrier plane of advanced design" at Folland. United Aircraft claims that its new civilian Sikorsky, the S-56, will carry 35 passengers and baggage.

Katherine Johnsen's   Washington Roundup reports that final decisions on the 1954 military budgets are imminent, and will determine the extent of military aid, the air defence investment, and the fate of the research and development budget, which may or may not be consolidated into a single fund. The undersecretaries are fighting about who cut what at Defence. Admiral Carney says that the Navy won't build new guided missile ships when it has lots of old hulls to convert. Undersecretary Murray is being hung out to dry over the cuts to the CAB. Feeder airlines aren't lobbying locally enough, people say. 

Robert Hotz reports for Aviation Week that "Douglas Skyrocket Reaches Mach 2.01," which is yet more Douglas self-promotion somehow making it to be the lead news item. Speaking of self-promotion, an "artist's impression" of the Fairchild M-186B jet transport shows up, page over, we visit the ongoing Congressional "Titanium Hearings," where Congressmen and women ask why there's no titanium, instead of going down to the plant and making titanium. (In fairness, it's hard and dirty work!) The Belgians have a drug for airsickness on the market, and AA is tightening up its schedules around its high-flying DC-7. (Passengers are being  "briefed" about "exhaust illumination," i.e., "It's nothing to worry about, the wing's just a bit on fire.") 

David A. Anderton, "Red MiG-15: AF Test Pilots Analyze Captive Fighter" Pilots don't like the manual controls on the MiG, found the cockpit cold, small, and cramped, and found it a bit slower than the Sabre in level flight. 

The US Navy reports, "F4D Trials" The F4D is great, and a perfect carrier plane! Meanwhile in California the aviation industry and the Defence Department are teaming up to fight the new property tax on industrial properties in four California counties. McDonnell is delivering the last of 800(!) Banshees, and there is a long article about business pilots' refresher training and a pictorial about the strike at North American. National Airlines doesn't want a subsidy for its experimental helicopter service, and the Viscount's power upgrade gets a story. Fairchild's 1000lb J44 turbojet gets a pictorial. NACA is buying a huge bellows from Solar for its wind tunnel, the University of Cincinnati's part time postgraduate training for working technicians is very popular, Vought is building its own wind tunnel, and the army shows off a stunt where it lays phone cable with a helicopter. 

Philip Klass reports for Avionics that "Industry Gets Microstrip License Offer" ITT's patented printed circuit process for making ultra lightweight waveguides and accessories is the best thing since the last thing that was the best thing since sliced bread. Three firms are offering improvements in magnetic amplifiers (Magnetic Research, D and R, Magnetic Amplifiers, Inc. I don't know. The fac that the technology has been left to dodgy little companies, while Hydro Aire, GE and Honeywell work on transistors, is not a good sign!) Georator has the cutest little frequency converting motor ever. New Aviation Products has high temperature electrical actuators from Bendix,  a fire-control (i.e. the kind of fire where the DC-7's titanium forgings are on fire, not the ones where you shoot Reds from the sky) plugs into a potentiometer wherever you can find room on a small plane. Lear's new ADF is remote tunable. Northrop has licensed its leakproof fitting design. 

Captain Robson's Cockpit Viewpoint looks at "Bad Weather and Lost Planes" explains that with bad weather, we have to face the fact that it is much more dangerous for a plane to be a bit lost over a major metropolitan area, and that we have to think about how we license pilots to accommodate this fact. Letters has A. T. Groves of Kimberley Clark's aviation department is upset that his comments to the magazine were cut for lack of space, leaving him sounding like he didn't make any sense. Sorry, needed to run some more hype for the Skyrocket! Jack Craddock of Temco is also upset that the company didn't get more free publicity in regards to its role in Pete Gluckmann's famous flight from London to America this year that we've all heard about. David Stuart writes to tell people who live next to airports to shut up and stop complaining considering they have the privilege of living next to airports. An Air Force man writes about gliders, another about the F-86 fighter bomber, and Airworks is very pleased about the article about Airworks. 

What the hell, here's some more. 

So what's up in The Engineer this month? (Not the Seven Day-) Journal for 20 November 1953 has the Association of Consulting Engineers, the British Electrical and Manufacturing Association, and the Cycle-and Motorshow throwing parties, and a fundraising appeal to spruce up the James Watt Memorial. 

We're going to have a long series about "Hydro-Electric Development in Portugal," which I absolutely approve of because no-one reading this cares to hear one more word. Then James Mitchell got to give a nice little talk on the "Steel-Making Process," which turns out to be an extended meditation on efficiencies and costs, plus a defence of modern Bessemer steel making practice and a discussion of something called "duplexing," and it's not even a multiparter, so I suppose if there was a point, The Engineer's note-taker missed it when he fell asleep. 

"Floor Malting at Grimsby" While I'm not a big beer drinker, it's like pork chops. The less I know about how it's made, the better. If you do want to know, they use a lot of machine tools to turn lots of barley into lots of beer without paying lots of brewers these days. "Chucking Automatic" is a way of making machine tools chuck woodchucks. I think. 

"Pressurised Electrical System for Hazardous Atmospheres" is a nice article from GEC about --well, just guess! It's mainly for coal mines. Commander (E) L. Baker, "Synthesis of Two Marine Water-Tube Boilers" is a "resume of important lessons learned from the operation of oil-fired water boilers at sea since 1925." Actually it seems to be about problems with the water boilers that commercial operators inherited from world war construction. Circulation defects, corrosion, superheater leaks, and drum cracks were the big problems, though American-made economisers soon developed problems with excess soot leading to fires and blocked passages. 

Wild-Barfield of Wales is using a steam plant for metal tempering. 


"London Particulars" Smog is horrible. Just how horrible, we are only beginning to understand. "Why and Why Not?" The Mitchell talk may not have a point at the end, but it has a point in every word, which is that "productivity" is just an empty word without considering the actual process. Literature reviews H. Kolsky, Stress Waves in Solids, which is a good review of a subject of "renewed interest." Jane's Fighting Ships 1955 is, well, what can you say about it? E. G. Ellis' Lubricant Testing, John Immis, Material Handling, and B. E. Lauer and R. F. Heckman, Chemical Engineering Techniques all pass without unfavourable comment, except that the last is too expensive (48s) and might have been better printed without colour illustrations. 

"Two Marine Water-Tube Boilers: Institute of Mechanical Engineers" Comm. (E) Baker's paper is discussed after the talk. It is pretty damn technical, so if you're interested in maintaining the right level of alkalinity in feed water, here's your lads. "Epicyclic Gearbox with Clutch Pedal" is a Leyland-Wilson patent, while "Diesel-Electric Locomotive for Mauritius is a good old locomotive design article that doesn't quite take up two pages, leaving us with advertorials for a lorry crane from Lorry Loaders, Ltd and an announcement of a Newcomen Society shindig. 

E. G. West, "Multiple-Unit Diesel Train in Aluminum describes mainly the very nice passenger cars of this German train, while "Triple-Screw Launch" is about a Shell launch for operation on Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela. Then we really get into the advertorials, with a marine reversing gearbox, a new research ship for the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, a mobile mine drill and tower crane, a forged steel drum, and a machine tool. American Engineering News visits the Missouri State Highway Division to look at a roughness recorder, a "large universal testing machine" (for locomotives) from the Baldwin Works, and plastic-coated steel and aluminum sheet from Naugateck Chemical division of the US Chemical Rubber Company. Industrial and Labour Notes reviews the trade balance (okay), the latest in worries about productivity, and highlights two different parties for two different institutes or chambers or associations of managers.  I'm sure they'll combine one day into the Royal Institution of People Who Tell You What To Do, and in 2053 some retiring president will lovingly trace its genealogy before inviting everyone into their office to sack them. Launches and Trial Trips has four steamships and one motor vessel, which is odd. The one motor ship is an oil tanker, while the steamers are cargo and passenger(2), cargo, tanker, and cargo liner. 

For 27 November, (Not the Seven Day-)Journal announces a shortage of engineers, and conventicles of concern over ventilation of the London Underground, inland transport in winter, and flood protection on the Thames. The Royal Society of Arts and the Institution of Gas Engineers are throwing parties. 

"Reconstruction of the Brooklyn Bridge (By Our American Correspondent)" The Brooklyn Bridge is eighty years old, was recently reconstructed, here are the details. The National Coal Board writes with details of two new processes for speeding up mine drifting with shuttle conveyors. 

B. H. Falconer, "Post Buckling Behaviour of Long, Square Boxes Under Torsion" Math and experimental details. This is clearly to wet our whistle for Richard Southwell, "Relaxation Methods: A Retrospective," a look at the relaxation method for solving systems of partial differential equations. 

"Automotive Two-Stroke Loop Scavenging Diesel Engines" The Engineer visited the Turner Manufacturing works in Wolverhampton to look at this new licensed German engine, which is installed in various test vehicles with an eye to wide commercial use as conversion packages. 

"Spreading a Colliery Waste Heap" I just don't know what to say. Is a waste heap more awful when it is spread out, or less? This particular colliery has so much that they dump the waste on a conveyor belt that dumps it along the way.

After the fold, and excluding the Southwell paper, there are two longer articles on a "Factory for Turbo-Jet Engines" (East Kilbride) and Ian C. Easton, "Shaft Sinking Accidents, 1905--1952" The East Kilbride works are picturesque for a factory, but the article is so short on details that I don't feel guilty being short with it. Notable shaft-sinking accidents seem to be very specific to the situation in which they occur, and isn't that the way of civil engineering, leading into D. J. McLean, "Recent Progress in Soil-Cement for Road Construction," which looks at soil cementation for various compositions and water content based on recent work at the Road Research Laboratory. Our Indian Correspondent reports on "Industrial Progress in China," which seems to be mostly about ever more iron and steel and concrete and hydraulic works. Brief advertorials for industrial lighting and air conditioning installations by C. A. Parsons and J. and A. Hall (travelling cranes) leads into African Engineering News, once again mostly from South Africa, where three new airports, more electricity, more uranium, a rail link with Southern Rhodesia, and titanium production are noted. Industrial and Labour Notes is on about wages some more, notes that the European coal situation is not satisfactory due to those lazy workers getting time off, and a conventicle of concern about simplifying foundry operation that did not make the Journal. No Launches and Trial Trips this week.  

Metallurgical Topics this monthly feature looks at a special session of the Corrosion Group of the Society of Chemical Industry on cathodic protection of ships, harbour works, and other stuff in the water. It also reviews a treatment of a test for quench cracking laid out in a chapter of a book by Holloman and Jaffeand and an article on vacuum-melted metals by J. H. Moore in the October Metal Progress, which is compared with a recent article by J. Ransome in Iron Age on vacuum-melted steel. 

Leaders have strong opinions on engineering wages, which are too high for operatives and too low for actual engineers, and locomotive testing at Swindon, of which there should be more, with the caveat that the actual performance of locomotives in Britain right now depends on the coal situation. Letters engages Jack R. Wood of Rutherglass, Lanarkshire, on ferries on the Clyde, E. B. Parker on the recent Harrow accident, and leaves M. Jones on file drawings the last word. 

Obituaries, not normally here considered, have this week the notice for Loughnan St. Lawrence Pendred (1870--1953), which is, indeed, a real name, of the Editor-in-Chief of The Engineer from 1905 to 1946 (and son of the founding editor), which is, first, a very long time, and, second, not a long time to enjoy retirement. 

Literature has R. S. H. Boulding's The Resonant Cavity Magnetron, which sounds like a useful treatment. A short notice of G. H. Pearson, The Design of Valves and Fittings follows.  

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