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for the triangular regional collaboration that Hale wanted to establish around Cal Tech, and whose ultimate offshoot was the Los Angeles aerospace industry." In order to realize this dream, Hale convinced one of his NRC colleagues, and America’s leading physicist, Robert A. Millikan, to forsake his beloved University of Chicago for the presidency of Cal Tech. A key factor in Millikan’s recruitment was apparently a promise by Southern California Edison to provide him with a high-voltage laboratory for experi­ ments in atomic physics. Hale and Millikan shared an almost fanatical belief in the partnership of science and big business. It was their policy that Cal Tech be allied to ‘aristocracy and patronage’ and shielded ‘from meddling congressmen and other representatives of the people’.100 Their chief apostle in mobilizing the local aristocracy was Edison director Henry M. Robinson, also president of the First National Bank and intimate of Herbert Hoover (‘his Colonel House’). Robinson had personally advanced science in Southern California by applying Einstein’s theories to capitalism in a little book entitled Relativity in Business Morals. (Critics suggested that Robinson had acquired experimental evidence for his treatise while partici­ pating in the great Julian Petroleum swindle of the 1920s.)1 0 1 With un­ bounded enthusiasm for alloying physics and plutocracy, Robinson helped Millikan and Hale recruit more than sixty local millionaires (Mudd, Kerckhoff, O’Melveny, Patton, Chandler, and so on) into the California Institute Asso­ ciates, the most comprehensive elite group of the era in Southern California. In his role as Cal Tech’s chief boaster, Millikan increasingly became an ideologue for a specific vision of science in Southern California. Speaking typically to luncheon meetings at the elite California Club in Downtown Los Angeles, or to banquets for the Associates at the Huntington mansion, Millikan adumbrated two fundamental points. First, Southern California was a unique scientific frontier where industry and academic research were joining hands to solve such fundamental challenges as the long-distance transmission of power and the generation of energy from sunlight. Secondly, and even more importantly, Southern California ‘is today, as was England two hundred years ago, the westernmost outpost of Nordic civilization’, with the ‘exceptional opportunity’ of having ‘a population which is twice as Anglo-Saxon as that existing in New York, Chicago or any of the great cities of this country’.102

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