Longines Chronoscope/25-06-1951

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Longines Chronoscope 25-06-1951  (1954) 
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Frank Knight
Presenting as a public service, the Longines Chronoscope, a weekly television journal of the vital events of the hour, a presentation of the Longines Wittnauer Watch Company, since 1866, maker of watches of the highest character.

Knight
Good evening, this is Frank Knight. Before introducing our discussion, I'd like to introduce Longines, the world's most honored watch. In all the capitals of the free world, Longines watches are known and respected for their elegance, excellence, and superior time-keeping. The greater accuracy of Longines watches has been a matter of public record for many, many years. Thus, about seventy-five years ago, a Longines chronometer, such as this one, was the first factory-made watch of its type to win first prize in an observatory accuracy contest. And for more than fifty years Longines chronographs, Longines timing watches, and Longines wrist watches of many types have won highest honors in great number. Now, in last year's Geneva observatory trial, as an example, Longines wrist watches won a total of twenty four first prizes. That's a remarkable achievement, it's a matter of historical record that year after year, for the past eighty-five years, Longines watches have achieved extraordinary honors. And that is why, throughout the world, no other name means so much as Longines, the world's most honored watch.

Knight
The Longines Chronoscope each week looks for the truth in the vital issues of the hour. And here to discuss these issues are our co-editors: Mr. Henry Hazlitt, a political economist of respected judgment and contributing editor of Newsweek magazine, and Mr. William Bradford Huie, editor of the American Mercury. Our guest for this evening is a distinguished British statesman and member of the King's Privy Council, Lord Wilmot. In this spontaneous and unrehearsed discussion, the opinions are necessarily those of the speaker. The subject tonight, quite logically, Anglo-American relations.

William Bradford Huie
Lord Wilmot, I believe you are not now a member of the British Government, are you?

Lord John Wilmot
No, I am not. I resigned from Mr. Attlee's cabinet at the end of 1947.

Huie
Are you a member of Commons?

Wilmot
I am now a member of the House of Lords. But for seventeen years I was a member of the House of Commons.

Huie
You mean that you are a lord and also a socialist?

Wilmot
Yes, I think that is right.

Huie
(illegible text), is there any incongruity in the statement.

Wilmot
Not at all. The Labour Party is the largest party in England, and the House of Lords is our Senate, and naturally the Labour Party has members in the Senate as well as in the House of Commons.

Huie
And here tonight you are expressing your private opinions, I assume?

Wilmot
Entirely, entirely.

Henry Hazlitt
Well, I'd like to ask you, Lord Wilmot, this question: what's your personal opinion of this Malik offer? Do you think it's a sincere offer, do you think anything is likely to come of it?

Wilmot
Well, I hope it is. But I think we've got to be cautious and make sure that it's genuine. I hope it is.

Hazlitt
What do you think the attitude of the British people are going to be about it.

Wilmot
I think it will be very--it will be very largely the same as I have expressed it.

Huie
Lord Wilmot, I believe you will agree there has been a good deal of criticism in the United States of what we think is a soft British policy toward Red China. Do you regard this offer of Malik as a vindication of your soft policy.

Wilmot
We've no soft policy, not at all. We are with you as Mr. Attlee said in fighting aggression and we are going to see it through. But we do hope that we shall carry the Korean War to victory at an early date. And victory will be when we've turned the aggressor out of South Korea.

Hazlitt
Well, has there been any embarrassment as a result of the fact that the British recognized the Chinese Communists and the Chinese Communists haven't recognized them back?

Wilmot
Well, I think there's been some misunderstanding about it, but we recognized China long before the Korean aggression. We recognized it as matter of fact, not as a matter of--

Hazlitt
Communist China?

Wilmot
Yes, not as a matter of approval. We believe the present government has got most of China on the mainland and that being a fact we recognize this fact. And that's all it is.

Huie
Are you in favor now of admitting Red China into the United Nations?

Wilmot
Certainly not, while this aggression goes on, certainly not.

Huie
Are you in favor of the Red Chinese signing the Japanese peace treaty?

Wilmot
No, I don't think so. I think so long as they are carrying out a policy of aggression which is being denounced by the United Nations, they can have no part in the peaceful settlement, as it were.

Hazlitt
Lord Wilmot, I think a lot of Americans are interested very much in your domestic situation, and one of the things they are very much interested in is this: at the present time, I believe, an Englishman has only about nine tenths of--worth of meat per week, which I understand is just about two good mouthfuls, something about this size.

Wilmot
Not much more, not much more.

Hazlitt
And how did you get into that position, where you can only have that much meat? What were the steps leading up to that?

Wilmot
Well, meat costs dollars, and dollars are very scarce.

Hazlitt
Well, haven't they simply been made scarce by the British government?

Wilmot
No sir, they were made scarce by Hitler. We spent our overseas dollars investment buying munitions of war before America came into the war.

Hazlitt
When you say our dollars though, you're speaking of the British government's holdings (illegible text)--

Wilmot
No, no, private citizens.

Hazlitt
Well, the private citizen isn't allowed to have any holdings, I mean--

Wilmot
No--

Hazlitt
--you have to turn them over to the government.

Wilmot
That's right.

Hazlitt
And so therefore that's why he can't buy meat with his own holdings because the government takes the dollars over, isn't the situation?

Wilmot
That's right, and that's done because we had to mobilize the dollar resources of all British citizens. In the first years of the war, when we had to pay cash in America and South America for what was necessary to carry on the war against Hitler.

Hazlitt
Well, do you think it's still necessary for the government to confiscate so to speak the foreign exchange holdings of its citizens and not allow those citizens to use those foreign exchange holdings, to buy with it what they want to buy with it?

Wilmot
Well, very few citizens have got dollar resources.

Hazlitt
Oh, they would have if they were allowed to keep them, wouldn't they?

Wilmot
No, I don't think they would. I think the best thing we can do in the present situation is to pursue a policy of reasonable fair shares. And there is so little to go around that we had to spread it around fairly evenly.

Huie
What is the reasonable fair share of meat for Britain today, sir?

Wilmot
Well, I'm sorry to say that it comes out to about eight penny worth a week. It's very small.

Huie
Is that about the size of your hand, (illegible text)?

Wilmot
We couldn't really tolerate the situation in which a few people had as much as they liked and the rest of the people went without.

Hazlitt
Yes, but you've got a situation where you're all going without.

Wilmot
Yes we are.

Hazlitt
Now, we want to find out how that situation came about, and some of us over here think British socialism brought about the situation--

Wilmot
Oh, no, no, Hitler brought it about, no, no.

Hazlitt
--created the situation. Now, let's take the situation of--these would be the Argentine, for example, Here you have the British government, which is the sole buyer of beef for the outside the individual can buy, and you have in the Argentine Mr. Perón, who's the sole seller of beef. So you have a sole governmental buyer and a sole governmental seller and you can't get together on the price and the result is the British get no meat. Isn't this part of the picture?

Wilmot
Well, they have got together on the price, it's much too high a price. But when you worry about one seller, it's very foolish to have competing buyers, and you're worried about one seller, you're better off if there's only one buyer.

Hazlitt
But you have two National--

Wilmot
I wish there were many sellers and many buyers, but that's not the case.

Hazlitt
But then you have two national socialism and the one national socialism in the Argentine won't sell beef to another national socialism in England.

(Speaking together)

Wilmot
Well, I don't like the phrase "national socialist" at all.

Hazlitt
So that when two national socialisms don't together--

Wilmot
It suggests something to me about which we fought very hard.

Hazlitt
Well, it isn't international socialism because they don't get together.

Huie
Well, that's all very interesting, but there's one other question I'd like to ask Lord Wilmot, and that's about Iran. A great many Americans have been struck by the incongruity of your government which has pushed nationalization in Britain opposing the nationalization of oil in Iran, sir.

Wilmot
Yes, I expect it does look like that. But, in fact, there's nothing illogical about it. We don't dispute the right of the Iranian government to nationalize the oil. What we do say is they should honor their commercial agreements. Now, such nationalization has been carried out in Britain, every contract was honored and every piece of private property was payed for at market value, and we ask the Iranians to do the same.

Huie
Well the statement was made by General Hurley, I believe, here last week that one of the things that that contract calls for is about 20% profit per year, and that the profit perhaps has been a little high, the reason you have so much trouble in Iran today, or that we have--

Wilmot
I'm afraid the General has it wrong. The 20% is what the Iranians get out of it, and they get 20% on top of the royalties, they get 20% of the total profits of the company although those profits arise very largely from trading all over the world. And this agreement with the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company has meant immense benefits for the people of Iran, and it's a tragedy that this thing should have been torn up in the way that it has.

Hazlitt
What do you think is likely to be the outcome, Lord Wilmot, if the Iranians persist in their present policies?

Wilmot
Well, I'm afraid the oil will go to waste and the economy of the country will be ruined.

Hazlitt
Well, don't you think there's a real danger of Russia stepping--

Wilmot
I do.

Hazlitt
--in there into that picture.

Wilmot
Well, I think there's a danger and we're doing our very best and I am still not without hope of success of coming to a reasonable agreement which we've offered to do for a long time past.

Huie
Lord Wilmot, here in America, we've been led to believe there is considerable disillusionment with the socialistic practices in England. Have you personally shared any of that disillusionment?

Wilmot
No, I don't think so. I think they are very much exaggerated. The government, after all, have been in power now since 1945. There's a certain amount of swing against it, as there always is out against a government when it's been in power for some time. But it's possible, you know, to exaggerate this socialist story, after all, you've got a lot of socialism in America, you know. I've seen the Tennessee Valley Authority, which exercises vast powers over an area bigger than England, and I think it's doing a lot of good. Whenever I go out in the streets of New York, I run into properties and assets belonging to the Ports and Docks Authority here. Now, that authority in England is still privately owned. 80% of all our enterprises in England are still privately owned. But our main utilities, like gas, electricity, and water, are publicly owned, and we call that socialist.

Hazlitt
Well, I'm sorry, Lord Wilmot, but our time is up. Thank you very much for being with us.

Wilmot
Well, I'm very glad to have been here. I'm very glad to have had this discussion.

Knight
Thank you very much indeed, gentlemen. The editorial board for this edition of the Longines Chronoscope was Mr. Henry Hazlitt and Mr. Bradford Huie. Our guest was the distinguished British statesman Lord Wilmot. Next week, the Longines Chronoscope will welcome as its special guest the Chinese Ambassador, Dr. Tingfu F. Tsiang.

Knight
And now, I'd like to give you some important facts that you may find useful in the choice of the next watch you buy. In this factory, Longines watches are made in their entirety, from plate to stamp, under one single exacting supervision, to one high standard of excellence, for distribution throughout the world. Now, just what is this Longines standard of excellence? The Longines standard is the highest, the very highest in watch-making. At World's Fairs and international expositions Longines watches have won ten grand prizes and twenty-eight gold medal awards, and this observatory accuracy certificate is but one of literally thousands of prizes, bulletins, and citations with which Longines watches have been honored by the world's great government observatories. It is a fact that throughout the world no other name on a watch means so much as Longines, the world's most honored watch, premier product of the Longines Wittnauer Watch Company, since 1866, maker of watches of the highest character.

Knight
Next week, at this same time over the CBS Television Network, the Longines Wittnauer Watch Company will again present the Longines Chronoscope, a television journal of the vital issues of the hour. This is Frank Knight, speaking for Longines, the world's most honored watch, and Wittnauer, distinguished companion to the honored Longines, both made and guaranteed by the Longines Wittnauer Watch Company, since 1866, maker of watches of the highest character.

Narrator
This is CBS, the Columbia Broadcasting System.