19 September 1956

19 September 1956

Dr. James R. Killian, President of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, sees no conflict between education for the gifted and the education for all. So far, he added, it has been education for all.

Edger S. Johnson – Pres. Nat’l Carbon Dev. – Union Carbide & Carbon Corp. – at dedication of new lab, Snow Road, Parma: “I assure you that we haven’t got an atom bomb to our name. One of our main jobs here is deep thinking without a lot of noise.

Dr. Killian (Principal Speaker) of research generally expressed the hope that “someone will always want to know what makes little daisies grow.”

P.S. Dear Notebook – I’m very busy right now learning things. Until I learn more and until I digest what I am learning – I won’t have much time to make comments here.

Last Monday – Blanche asked me whether I would like to join her firm as a Junior Member to learn her export business. This is all a direct outcome of my interest in investments and the consequent plunge into the long-neglected missing link in my educational background – the field of economics – and the grass is very green – completely unexplored.

Oops! I guess I have learned a little. Theresa Treer called me today to see whether I wanted her Thursday ticket for anyone for the Finance Forum (Nat’l City Bank). I didn’t because few of the people I know have enough money to invest in steak at $1.49 a pound, let along invest in stocks, and Dawson, economist for N.C. Bank is talking on investments.

We got into a discussion however where she was quite representative of the human self-interest aspect of our human species.

She had everything in Lyndhurst but transportation; except a second car. Steve, with opening his Engineering Div. on E. 185th Street had daily need of their one car.

We got to talking about metropolitan needs and she said she was certainly glad the turnpike road didn’t go along Richmond Rd. as originally planned. The property (their home included) would have devaluated.

She would have no truck with her heavenly status quo in Lyndhurst – she just wanted better transportation since they could not afford a new car. She and I also talked of the devaluation of property hitting Cleveland areas with the desegregation problem.

Actually, the conversation boiled down to this, although not expressed in these terms. We are all selfish. We want our land, money, social status to grow personally as individuals. Nothing should interfere with out gains. But – such an attitude ignores the flux and flow and change in human conditions.

Theresa would have been very resentful of the devaluation of their property by a turnpike road. She likes her achievement and social status as related to her home – and – like a child will not let anyone touch her toy. As it was the road is going somewhere else. Whether it will cost more to reroute the road – taxwise (and she complained about the high taxes). She is so representative of our situation here in Cleveland and its suburbs. We want service, schools, utilities, good government, personalized service – without much taxation and a quiet peaceful settled condition forever more. But it just doesn’t work. Changes do come. Individuals do get hurt moneywise, social, and in many other ways.

Theresa would complain bitterly about her loss – because it was a personal loss.

I’m sure she would shed no tars, however over the poor horse & buggy man who lost his livelihood when auto’s [sic] came. She bought a TV set and no longer went to the movies much. She didn’t see someone had taken a money loss. She has a refrigerator (What became of the ice company’s profits?) She has a washing machine. (What became of the washtub manufacturer – let’s hope he turned to washing machines.) etc. etc.

People must adapt & change and find new solutions to new problems. Crying into a bucket over change is simple [sic] a kid balling over dropping his ice cream cone on the sidewalk because someone pushed his arm. He must realize the loss of his ice cream cone. Then he must accept the situation: cry, and then dry his tears; maybe he can talk someone into buying him another one; or be content to have another ice cream cone another day; or accept a substitute for the ice cream cone.

Billy and I and Nancy discussed telephone calls after school today. Quite a discussion.

Billy also made this remark (he got his new Science Newsletter today): “You shouldn’t have bought me that GENIAC.” (purchased last Xmas via mail).

“Why?” said I.

“Because now they offer a stand and several books with it and at the same price.

Well! Well!

Some discussion(?) followed and it amounted to this as far as Billy’s explanation of it all was concerned: “He wanted to know the theory for computing the experiments. All the GENIAC gave him was wiring problems: “a bunch of circuits and screws!”

My end of the discussion: “Theory was very fine, but no one got a ditch dug on ‘theory’ alone, you needed some hard elbow-grease.”

This ended the “discussion”. Bill retired to his bedroom muttering to himself for about 5 minutes. I caught phrases he was mutting – something about a “Slob!” or “a big Slob!”

Oh! Yes! I also pointed out, in discussing with him that there were an awful lot of people who made a good living out of monkeying around with “a bunch or circuits and screws.”

What a Slob I am!