Monday, December 31, 2012

Alcohol: Servant or Master?

"The most important thing to know about alcohol is that it is an anesthetic, not a stimulant. This does not mean that when you take a drink you begin to put yourself to sleep - everyone knows that is not so. The first drink may have no effect that you or anyone else can observe. But as alcohol does begin to affect you, and as you laugh and talk more easily, and feel better, and stop being concerned about things that are ordinarily a worry, what has hapened is that the higher control centers of your brain have been somewhat relieved of their authority. Nothing has been added - except for the intake of alcohol - but something has been taken away."

Good Reading Rack Service, no date

Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Year Of The Rat

"Those people who believe in statistics tell us that things really boomed in the latter half of 1959. Car loadings were up. Retail sales were up. Dow-Jones averages were up. But the thing that was really up was the production and use of rose-colored glasses. Rose-colored glasses were used in the main for gazing happily into the golden haze that came to be known as the Soaring Sixties. Rose-colored glasses are never made in bifocals, for nobody reads the small print in dreams, nor are they interested in handwriting on the wall, or clouds no bigger than a man's hand on the horizon."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1960

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Who Profits Most?

"The rapid progress which Communism is making all over the earth is a matter of the gravest concern to every one of us. The only encouraging aspect of the situation, probably, is the fact that the American people are fully awake to this danger. But in our desire to save the world - and ourselves - from the Communist menace, it seems to me that we are dropping our guard against another political force which is equally dangerous to human liberty, one which has been vastly more successful than Communism in its creeping conquest of nation after nation. And that force, of course, is Socialism." 

Good Reading Rack Service, 1955

Friday, December 28, 2012

The Unwanted Bundle On Your Doorstep

"This era we live in has been called the Atomic Age, the Space Age, and many similarly imaginative names. But historians of the future may call it - more correctly perhaps - the Age of Competition. For never before in history, probably, has man's ability to survive depended so directly upon his ability to compete on a national and international scale. Today the business leadership of America is being challenged by nations all over the world and on both sides of the Iron Curtain. The cold war is centering more and more upon the battlefield of industrial production. But to call it merely a war of production is to miss the point. It is primarily a war of productivity - a struggle on the part of every company, every industry and every nation to become the low-cost producer of the things which it offers for sale in world markets."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1959

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Greatest Gift On Earth

"My car developed engine trouble on the winding highways of southern Indiana. It was late at night, the rain was pouring and I was hopeless. Not that I did not know what was wrong with my car, but there wasn't a single thing that I could have done about it. Car manufacturers here in America must be so confident about the quality of their make that they fail to include even so much as a screw driver in their equipment."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1956

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Peace We Seek

"Love of country is a great virture, and indeed it is a virtue upon which the free societies must depend. For while despotisms can command sacrifices and the response is measured by patriotism."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1956

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Tidings

"Bright as sparkling sunglight, the Holiday Spirit lights new friendships and rekindles old ones year after year. At this one season we pause to remember our friends…and to tell them that we are thinking of them. And, this Christmas especially…we want to share with you the ageless and wonderful stories of Christmas...the carols...the joys of Christmas Tide. That your Christmas might be the happiest and merriest ever is our Christmas wish for you."

no publication information

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Magic of Christmas

"A child's shining face, A stranger's smile, A perfect snowflake glistening in the air, The different dignity of the church bells, The songs, on lips both young and old, The spirit of rising above the ordinary…for this special day…This, is the magic of Christmas. These things we cherish, and these magic symbols of family and love, of good will and peace, We wish for have and to hold, For many a Christmas to come. Merry Christmas to you and yours. May you have a MAGIC Christmas to remember."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1958

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Carols For Christmas

"There's a song in our hearts during this holiday season. The joys, the pleasures of Christmas are born anew. For this is the time of the year when we count our blessings…the time when we think most of our friends. And so, in the true spirit of the holiday season...we send you Carols for Christmas. May each Carol add to your holiday pleasure."

no publication information

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Christmas Customs

"Let it stand proudly in the fairest spot…string the lights…carefully, gently hang the ornaments…here is the glittering star for the very top…where shall we put the golden angel? Surely this is the most enchanting hour of all the Christmas season. All the Yuletides of all the centuries are met in this shining Christmas tree - the evergreen - symbol of the immortality which coming of the Christ Child promised."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1956

Friday, December 21, 2012

Thoughts At Christmastime

"Each of us at times feels beaten down by frustrations, overwhelmed by things that seem wrong with the world. The Russians are awful. The atom bomb may blow us up. Taxes are a burden. Public service is full of corruption. Gambling and rackets are widespread. There's crookedness in sports. Youths are drafted - for what? Schools are too crowded. There are traffic jams and floods and airplane crashes. Europe does not appreciate our aid. People are dying of cancer and heart diseases. Children are crippled by polio. Many churches are only half full. Morals are not what they used to be. The world is going to pot - so many of us say to ourselves. But take the blinders off at this holiday season. See the world as a whole, and life as a flowing stream. Look back of the present, and on to the future, to the permanent values that lie beneath the surface of the current goings on. Then you will find within yourself a deeper confidence than you knew, and a practical creed to live by." 

The Kiplinger Washington Agency, Inc., 1954

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Story of Christmas

"Foremost among American Christmas customs is the giving of gifts. How exciting it is, to see the gaily wrapped packages with bright ribbons and colorful papers, the shiny new toys and bulging stockings by the mantlepiece on Christmas morning! Gift-giving is observed in many countries, but not always on the 25th of December. Some chose December 6th; and others the 12th day after Christmas when the Wise Men came to visit the Christ Child and brought with them gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh."

The National Research Bureau, Inc., no date

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Decorations For All Year Round

"Like a touch of magic, colorful decorations can transform traditional holidays from calendar dates into happy events that will be vividly remembered. Parties, special family occasions and anniversaries can be more fun for everyone if effective decorations lend "sparkle." This booklet shows you how you can create the festive mood for special events all year round - with inexpensive materials and little effort, but with big results. Whether you plan a better-than-ever Christmas, a birthday party, or an autumn-bright table for your family's Thanksgiving dinner, you'll find inspirations by the dozen (with instructions and pictures) on the following pages."

Stevens Publications, 1954

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

How To Save 24 Hours A Week

"It pays to plan the housekeeping activities. Planning is the best way to be sure the family doesn't get bogged down by day-to-day tasks, and then find itself short on time for doing all the things it really wants to do. Perhaps that's how Grandma managed without our modern conveniences - by planning her work and being well organized. She gave one day to washing, one to baking, etc., and still had time for church activities and parties."

Birk & Co. Inc., 1953

Monday, December 17, 2012

How To Buy A Good Used Car

"The first step is to decide what you want a car for. If it is to be a "transportation" car, then all you'll be looking for is economy and dependability - appearance hardly counts. Or you may want a family car good for a number of years. You'll have to pay more for it and your first step should be to scan the used car ads in the paper to see how prices run. If you are thinking of a larger two year old car, you might more profitably settle for a smaller new car at perhaps $150-$250 more. A two year old car is generally one turned in by the two year traders and, of course, they are traded in at that time for a very good reason. For by the the end of its second year a new car is fast approaching the time when a good mechanical overhaul and ring job is needed plus a new set of tires. If you add the cost of these repairs and tires to the price of a larger two year old car, you'll often find you can buy a lighter new car for the same price and enjoy two to three years of freedom from repairs yourself."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1954

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Mr. Big Meets Mr. Small

"This everyday scene of an American family in this living room provides a remarkable measure of the diversity of American business, the interdependence of its parts, and the way they work together to give us the highest standard of living the world has seen."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1957

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Best Friend You Have

"One Saturday morning a couple of weeks ago my friend Jack Balch went down into the village where we live and bought himself a power mower. Now there's nothing out of the ordinary about that. It happens all of the time, you say. You're right, for at precisely that same instant that Jack bought his new power mower - A freckle-faced kid in a Joplin, Mo., sporting goods store, decided that $10.95 was just too much to pay for a new baseball glove. A housewife shopping in Springfield, Mass., felt that a $19.95 dress was good enough for her - even thought it didn't have all the high-styling which brings a higher price in other dress shops....And that's how it went - in every city and hamlet throughout the United States - as similar decisions by the millions were made to buy or not to buy something that Saturday morning."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1959

Friday, December 14, 2012

Who's Breathing Down Your Neck?

"I arrived home recently to find my wife watching a vaccuum-cleaner salesman closely as he pushed his cleaner across the living-room rug. The salesman was near collapse. From the looks of the place he had been demonstrating for hours. Sales literature and cleaning parts were scattered everywhere. At last, after another fifteen minutes' cross-examination, my wife said, "Thanks for coming out, Mr. Jameson. I will let you know what I decide." the salesman found the front door wide open and his hat and coat in his hands. After his departure I was told, "That's just the beginning. The Hoover people are coming tomorrow morning, the Lewyt people in the afternoon and the Electrolux salesman Wednesday. We're going to get the best, believe me!" My wife, in her foxy feminine way, was proving that Professor Sumner Slichter of Harvard spoke truly when he called America "the most competitive country in the world."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1958

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Fight For Decency

"No matter who you are, you can do something to raise the level of our literature and entertainment. It is taking a dangerous attitude to brand these vital fields of communication as bad, because they make mistakes. Each and all of them can exert a tremendous influence for good, if enough persons like you make it their business to improve them, rather than merely deplore these errors."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1954

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Counterattack on Juvenile Delinquency

"America is facing an emergency, a crisis which threatens the very future of our nation. It is the emergency of juvenile delinquency. The tide of youthful lawlessness is rising at a terrifying pace. By 1962 one million of our teen-agers will be arrested each year - at the present rate. My considered opinion is that we must act - and promptly. The time has come for a counterattack against juvenile delinquency. Unless this counterattack is successful no street or park in the nation will be safe. Worst of all, every child in the nation will be exposed to the vicious acts of the delinquent minority."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1959

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

What Is Astronomy All About?

"Who among us has not thrilled to the promise made by scientists that man will soon travel across the vast spaces separating him from neighboring planets and stars? And haven't we all conjured up extravagant and fantastic experiences and sights that lie before us on such trips through space and time? But why wait for the space rockets to be constructed? Without moving from that comfortable chair you can journey through the immense reaches of space on the chariots of knowledge built by the astronomers. For astronomy has made the whole concept of space travel possible. Let's have a closer look at this science which as given humanity so much in the past, but whose greatest contributions still lie ahead."

Alumni Offset Inc., 1953

Monday, December 10, 2012

Incandescent Genius

"For more than 50 years the name of Thomas Alva Edison had been known around the world as that of America's most brilliant inventor. But Edison was far more than this. Few people realize that he was one of the most extraordinary human beings America has ever produced. His life was more dramatic than any of his spectacular inventions." 

The Reader's Digest Association, 1954

Sunday, December 9, 2012

George Westinghouse

"George Westinghouse literally gave the United States the power to grow. His development of long distance transmission of alternating current electricity furnished much of the momentum for that growth. Although this may have been his crowning achievement, the footprints of his genius were to be found in many industrial fields."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1958

Saturday, December 8, 2012

John Stevens: Father of American Railroads

"In its early years the Unites States was plagued by disunity. Inadequate, uncertain transportation isolated the states and the few cities which clung to the Atlantic coast. George Washington's dearm of a network of canals was slow to materialize. Good roads scarcely existed. The relative ease of sea transportation made New York closer to Europe than to the Mississippi River. Travelers journeyed by Concord coach, horseback or, preferably by boat. Between New England towns they patronized the "Apple Tree Fleet" schooners whose skippers took bearings from orchards along the beaches. In winter a Philadelphian might travel by stagecoach to Baltimore in five days - with luck! Pack-horse trains were common in the Appalachians. Ten days were necessary for the sad news of Washington's death to reach Boston. Delegates often met difficulty and delay traveling to captials for legislative sessions. Poor transportation hobbled the nation's economy and the functioning of its government. Unity was next to impossible. During this period - considered as one of the most critical in America's history - Colonel John Stevens of New Jersey faced these challenges. Born in Manhattan and a graduate of King's College, now Columbia University, Stevens had been an officer in Washington's army. From 1777 to 1782 he had helped to finance the Revolution as Treasurer of his state."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1958

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Wright Brothers

"Wilbur, third son of Milton and Susan Wright, was born April 16, 1867, at Millville, Indiana. Two years later the family moved to Dayton, Ohio, taking a small dwelling on Hawthorne Street which was to be its home for more than four decades. In that house, Orville came into the world August 19, 1871, and on his third birthday, Katharine was born. In the same home, Susan, the mother, died when Wilbur was 22 and Orville was 18."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1958

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Historical and Biographical Album of Benjamin Franklin

"Benjamin Franklin was the first - and remains the greatest - genius born in the New World. Like Leonardo da Vinci, genius of the Old World, Franklin had an inquiring mind, truly majestic in scope, that gave the world a wealth of practical ideas which in very great measure advanced civilization. He was America's first world figure."

Herman Jaffe, 1955

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Our National Historic Shrines

"Every year Americans pay increasing heed to Winston Churchill's words displaying a striking surge or interest in America's civilization and history. With added leisure time and increased earnings, U.S. families are flocking to historic shrines." 

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1959

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Red Plush and Black Bread

"My first encounter with the Soviets was at the Viborg railway station restaurant, at the border point on the Scandinavian route to Leningrad, where we breakfasted. Even though I'd been warned about prices, they were still a shock. One hard-boiled egg and tea costs four rubles, or one American dollar at the official rate of exchange. You pay extra for butter, jam and bread. A full breakfast of (grapes), ham and eggs and coffee costs more than twenty rubles, or five dollars. The Viborg railway station must date back a long time, probably to the period when the Czars of Russia still ruled all Finland. The dining room had enormously high ceilings and the inevitable red plush curtains. I call the color "dried-blood red" because it is so dark. To me these curtains are depressingly heavy, both in texture and color. But to the Russians they seem to be the ultimate in luxury."

Good Reading Rack Service, 1956

Monday, December 3, 2012

Any Means To Achieve Our Ends

"My son, Dick, had just come home on leave from the Air Force. The rest of the family had gone to bed and he and I were watching TV. I hadn't seen Dick in eleven months. He's a big, raw-boned guy - happy, full of the zest for living, and deeply curious and disturbed about many things. He was just twenty-one. We had just watched Khrushchev on the late news so we turned the TV off and started chatting about the performance we had just seen and world affairs generally. Then Dick said to me, "Dad, when you were a newspaperman you had a lot to do with this communism 'jazz'. What cooks with the commies, anyway? Why do they do the unpredictable things they do?" He went on to explain that at his base in Texas he had been indoctrinated, in a sense, as to what communism was supposed to be. He confessed that he couldn't understand either their basic philosophy or particulary why they acted in such an unaccountable way."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1960

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Our Red Rivals

"The Soviet Union has challenged America to an all-out economic competition in the years ahead. After that, it claims its communist system will gain world acclaim and will prevail. Author Harold Mansfield found that Soviet workers and citizens think of themselves as personally a part of this competition. They have a great sense of pride in their own skills, their own workmanship, their own part in their national effort. Here is a penetrating, first-hand report on America's red rivals, and the country in which they work."

Robert F. Stone & Company, 1958

Saturday, December 1, 2012

How We Can Win The Cold War

"If all the words which have been written and spoken about the Cold War with Russia could be placed end to end, they probably would match the length of an average satellite's orbit. Every newspaper you read, every newscast you hear, gives the Cold War day-to-day attention. Authors write books about it; politicians issue statements about it; and men on public platforms bring it into every presentation. The reason is simple. Here is an international conflict which everyone agrees will determine the nature of civilization and the conditions of human life for generations to come. From the standpoint of the United States, we must either win this war or witness the death of our nation."

A Help-Your-Self Booklet, 1960