Norman Cousins was a longtime editor of the Saturday Review and the author of eleven books on health and healing, among other works.
Cousins (The Healing Heart, etc.) returns to familiar concerns in this account of the ``collective madness'' of the arms race. Stressing that national security is often a guise that allows private contractors to earn huge profits in weapons-making, he examines the U.S. development of nuclear weapons since World War II, noting that even major military figures (MacArthur, Eisenhower) have sought alternatives to their use. Much of the book focuses on the widely reported dishonesty, mistakes and mismanagement of weapons-makers who profit from ``excessive and careless military spending.'' The U.S., Cousins warns, is now dangerously dependent on defense spending. He concludes by urging the strengthening of world institutions and the establishment of new forums to meet world problems. While offering little that is original, Cousins's lucid overview will doubtless appeal to his large following. (February 23)