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Frank StantonFrank Stanton
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scientists were making suggestions to the White House through this group about what the President should be doing in terms of alerting the world to what might be happening, etc. It was an interesting period, and it was an extension of what Eisenhower was doing, and what Jack Kennedy had done with “1984.” Whether that's going on now or not I haven't the slightest idea. I just don't know. I'm totally out of that loop. Jerry [Jerome] Weisner called me the other day, because he was the science advisor to Kennedy. Early on in Kennedy's administration he had the problem of deciding what to do about the space program. He turned it over to Lyndon Johnson, as his Vice President, to assemble a task force to explore the question from a variety of points of view. They had the scientists, they had people from the academic world, they had Senator [Robert S.] Kerr, I remember, who was one of the members of the group. A man who had been mentioned as the Secretary of the Treasury but never was named, but who was a very close friend of Johnson's and was very well plugged in on the Hill, was a man by the name of Don [Donald C.] Cook, who maybe at that time was CEO of American Electric Power. He was in the group. I was there anyway, Jerry Weisner was there because he was representing Kennedy as a science advisor. Fascinating group. We were briefed hour upon hour about what the possibilities were to get to the moon, etc., and what the Russians were doing, Sputnik -- that whole thing was -- the air was just alive with all kinds of space problems. Johnson had to make a report to Kennedy as to whether to go ahead with the space program, because it was an important step. It was out of that group that Kennedy then said, “We're going to the moon,” and Weisner, now retired as head of M.I.T. [Massachusetts Institute of Technology], remembered that I was in that group (most of the people in that group are now gone) and he called me just the other day and asked me if I remembered that particular meeting, because he said it was such a critical meeting in terms of Kennedy's decision to go to the moon. The reason I can talk about it now is --

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