Space shanties and blindfolded bards. The only thing missing are manatees. The porthole size would fit. Some spoilsport observations: most unsung heroes of the working place (stokers and nuclear pile technicians) are not their own Boswells. The literary outsourcing has a long tradition (Homer and his Agamemnon dirge). Permanent loss of eyesight due to radiation is rather rare. Meltdowns are not too spectacular in the pyrotechnical sense and neurons are much tougher than high turnover tissue. - 'Rhysling' is apparently pronounced like 'rye bread' and not like the cru [Riesling]). A strictly technical term for the depicted instrument is 'squeeze box'. - Other Heinlein stories with noble sacrifice content: The last chapter of Stranger in a Strange Land (stoned to death by a sicced up mob), Gulf (suicide bombing, somewhat incongruous, the martyrs have to learn a logic shorthand language before their mission - every pitch counts), Sky Lift (premature aging), The Long Watch (voluntary death by radiation), Podkayne of Mars.
It is hard to eke out a living as a substitute traffic light. - One way to defuse the rather thorny subject matter. The Astounding, Jan 1941, features a rather demoralizing Macy's Day float. Patterned on one of Goya's mountain giants. (Larger than life rubber pumpkins decide the outcome of the war. The truth about barrage balloons.) - For what it is worth: The prophetic angle is probably overrated. Counter-suggestion: Proust. Every nation will try to recapture her hour of glory (magic at your fingertips). For Japan it was Tsushima (utf-8 test, 対馬海戦). One fell stroke and all your problems will be solved. Nearly infallible. Extension, in pseudo Richelieu diction, behind every great nation there is a golden hour, you just have to hark back far enough. Clemenceau, whatever we can salvage (a clear correlation between foreign policy and the actual form of government, democratic or monarchic, has never been established).
A praetorian guard deserts to the other side. Love interest (Vestal virgins), a gradual broadening of the political horizon and dire necessity are all contributing factors (when push comes to shove). The cover shows the hero before his defection. The New Jerusalem cross is prominently displayed on the Greek muscle armor (no chased plastron without an open window into the heart). The Orwell content feels outmoded and affected (fist shaking against a cult of personality - also derided: televised evangelism, transubstantiation and hypocrisy in general). Saving grace, Heinlein's sympathy for fleet-footed fugitives.
The pie in the sky and how to market it. A flight to the moon becomes a promotional gimmick. Not that the feasibility was ever an issue.
The concept of a spherical extension of national sovereignty is exploited in one of the sales pitches. This concept is somewhat problematic for objects which are not in synchronous orbit. Chameleon sovereignty. A corresponding zoning idea can be found on maps which predated the Antarctica Treaty of 1961. A national pie-chart diagram is superimposed on the pottery wheel of the 6th continent.