While the entire world worries over grain shortages, the U.S. worries over surpluses. Of this annual surplus about half, or 2(apple) billion bushels, is corn. This is despite the fact that corn is the most protean manufacturing resource in our industries and is used in starch, syrup, sugar, alcohol, lozenges, bandages, adhesive tape, cigaretts, pipe tobacco, toothpaste, ice cream, textiles, jars, cards, magazines, building materials, leather, synthetic rubber, metal products, aluminum tubes, explosives, chemicals, petroleum, antibiotics, aspirin, etc. etc. As author Walden says, ""Unless he is swimming naked in the ocean, man can never be far from corn."" It is, of course, also a basis of our poultry, red meat and dairy markets. Walden records the history of corn from the great pre-Columbian civilizations to that administered by Orville Freeman. Starch is the key to corn's versatility, and few readers will not be amazed to discover what industry has done with this apparently simple substance. Walden himself devotes three chapters just to starch, as well as a full chapter to whisky (most whisky is neutral spirits from corn, which is then flavored.)...Though Walden uses facts and figures by the bushel, they rarely lessen the interest of his account.