Tag Archives: Theodore Roosevelt

Eddie Rickenbacker – an Ace among men


Eddie Rickenbacker – an Ace among men

Eddie Rickenbacker WWI AceAmerican Minute with Bill Federer

He began his career as an auto racer, gaining international fame by competing in the Indianapolis 500 four times, earning the nickname “Fast Eddie.”

When World War I stared, he was sent to France in 1917, becoming the personal chauffeur driver of General John J. Pershing.
His name was Edward Vernon “Eddie” Rickenbacker, born OCTOBER 8, 1890.

With Germany’s Red Baron dominating the skies, Eddie requested transfer to the air service where he eventually became commanding officer of the 94th Aero Pursuit Squadron, with its now famous “Hat-in-the-Ring” insignia.

This Squadron was responsible for destroying 69 enemy aircraft, the highest number shot down by any American Squadron.

Flying over 300 combat hours, Eddie Rickenbacker was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor by President Herbert Hoover in 1931 for personally shooting down 26 enemy aircraft.

He wrote his World War I experiences in the book, Fighting the Flying Circus, 1919, such as one story:

“…three-quarters of an hour of gasoline remained…and no compass.

Then I thought of the north star! Glory be! There she shines! I had been going west instead of south…

Keeping the star behind my rudder I flew south for fifteen minutes, then…found myself above…the River Meuse…picked up our faithful searchlight and ten minutes later I landed…

As I walked across the field to my bed I looked up…and repeated most fervently, ‘Thank God!’”

Rickenbacker wrote of the courage of fellow pilot Lt. Quentin Roosevelt, the son of President Theodore Roosevelt:

“Quentin flew about alone for a while, then discovering, as he supposed, his own formation ahead of him he overtook them, dropped in behind…

To his horror he discovered that he had been following an enemy patrol all the time! Every machine ahead of him wore a huge black maltese cross on its wings and tail!…

Quentin fired one long burst…The aeroplane immediately preceding him dropped at once and within a second or two burst into flames.

Quentin put down his nose and streaked it for home before the astonished Huns had time to notice what had happened.”

Quentin was shot down in a dogfight, July 14, 1918, as Rickenbacker wrote:

“Quentin Roosevelt’s death was a sad blow to the whole group.”

In recounting barely escaping death himself, Eddie Rickenbacker wrote:

“I want to make it clear that this escape and the others were not the result of any super ability or knowledge on my part. I wouldn’t be alive today if I had to depend on that.

I realized then, as I headed for France on one wing, that there had to be something else.

I had seen others die, brighter and more able than I.

I knew there was a power. I believe in calling upon it for aid and for guidance.

I am not such an egotist as to believe that God has spared me because I am I. I believe there is work for me to do and that I am spared to do it, just as you are.”

After World War I, Eddie Rickenbacker became owner of the Indianapolis Speedway which holds the annual 500 mile auto race.

In 1925, Rickenbacker supported General Billy Mitchell, who was court-martial for criticizing the military’s failure to upgrade their airplanes.

Rickenbacker worked for Eastern Airlines, eventually becoming its president.

He opposed President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal policies as socialism, which drew criticism from the liberal media.

Roosevelt’s administration even ordered NBC Radio not to broadcast Rickenbacker’s remarks.

In 1942, Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson asked Rickenbacker to go on a special mission to the Pacific to inspect the military bases.

Flying from Hawaii to New Guinea to meet with General Douglas MacArthur, the plane’s inadequate navigational equipment resulted in them being hundreds of miles off-course.

Out of fuel, the plane ditched in the ocean, October 21, 1942.

For twenty-four days, in almost hopeless conditions, Eddie Rickenbacker and seven others drifted aimlessly on the open sea.

Lt. James Whittaker described in his book, We Thought We Heard The Angels Sing (1943), that they shivered wet all night but baked in the burning sun all day, and fought off sharks:

“…Those giant swells hadn’t looked so bad from high in the air, but down among them they were mountainous…

Rick maintained with a perfectly straight face that he was not in the least upset…

A swift movement beside our raft caught my eye and I turned…The water about the raft fleet was alive with the triangular, dorsal fins of sharks…”

The crew would have given up had not 52-year-old Eddie Rickenbacker, the oldest person on the raft, continued to encourage them.

Lt. James Whittaker wrote:

“Col. James C. Adamson…suddenly raised himself over the side of the raft and slid into the water. Quick as a flash, Rick had him.

We hurriedly pulled the rafts in close and helped push the Colonel back into his boat…Rick took over.

I will not put down all the things he said. They would scorch this paper. But from then on, woe betide the man who appeared about to turn quitter…

That man Rickenbacker has got a rough tongue in his head.”

Lt. James Whittaker continued:

“At length Private Johnny Bartek got out his Testament and by common consent we pulled the rafts together for a prayer meeting. We said the Lord’s prayer…

I didn’t have the least notion that this open-air hallelujah meeting was going to do any good…I observed that Rick seemed to encourage the suggestion and appeared inclined to take part…
Col. Adamson was reading from the Testament.

Suddenly Cherry stopped him. ‘What was that last, Colonel?’ he demanded. ‘Where is that from?’

‘It is from the Gospel According to Matthew,’ Col. Adamson replied. ‘Do you like it?’

‘It’s the best thing I’ve heard yet. Read it again, Colonel.’

Col. Adamson then read from the 31st through the 34th verses of the sixth chapter of Matthew:

‘Therefore, take ye no thought, saying: What shall we eat? or What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? For these are things the heathen seeketh. For your Heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.’

Lt. James Whittaker continued:

“I was somewhat impressed and said so. Then I was a little surprised at myself and added that the evil certainly had been sufficient unto the last two or three days…

I thought of these words during the wet, dreary night that followed. I dismissed them finally with the decision I would believe when I saw the food and drink. I was destined to see something startlingly like proof the following night…”

Flight Engineer Private Johnny Bartek of Freehold, N.J., wrote in his book, Life Out There (1943) that on the 8th day, after reading from the Bible, Matthew 6:31-34, a sea gull landed on Rickenbacker’s head:

“…but as we went on we all began to believe in the Bible and God and prayer…We prayed and prayed for the sea gull to land so we could catch him…

After reading the passage, about twenty minutes later, that’s when the sea gull landed on Eddie Rickenbacker’s head…”

Rickenbacker caught it and they used it for food and fish bait, with a fishhook made from a bent key ring.

Succumbing to exposure and dehydration, Lt. James Whittaker wrote further in We Thought We Heard The Angels Sing (1943):

“We said the Lord’s prayer again…

While we rolled and wallowed over the crests and into the troughs I was thinking that this was God’s chance to make a believer of Jim Whittaker…

Eventually I became aware something was tugging insistently at my consciousness. I looked over to the left. A cloud that had been fleecy and white a while ago now was darkening by the second.

While I watched, a bluish curtain unrolled from the cloud to the sea. It was rain – and moving toward us! Now everyone saw the downpour, sweeping across the ocean and speckling the waves with giant drops.

‘Here she is!’ Cherry shouted. ‘Thanks, Old Master!’ Another minute and we were being deluged by sheets of cold water that splashed into our parched mouths and sluiced the caked salt off our burned and stinging bodies. We cupped our hands to guide the life-giving rivulets down our throats…

We soaked and wrung out our shirts until all the salt was washed out of them. Then we saturated them again and wrung the water into our mouths…”

Eddie Rickenbacker described their survival in his book, Seven Came Through (1943).

Regarding America, Eddie Rickenbacker wrote:

“I pray to God every night of my life to be given the strength and power to continue my efforts to inspire in others the interest, the obligation and the responsibilities that we owe to this land for the sake of future generations – for my boys and girls – so that we can always look back when the candle of life burns low and say,

‘Thank God I have contributed my best to the land that contributed so much to me.’”

Eddie Rickenbacker confided:

“It was clear to me that God had a purpose in keeping me alive…I had been saved to serve.”


Bill FedererThe Moral Liberal contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s books here.

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John Bunyan’s – The Pilgrim’s Progress


Pilgrim's Progress first edition 1678American Minute with Bill Federer

He was imprisoned 12 years for preaching without a license from the government.

This was John Bunyan, who died AUGUST 31, 1688.

Born in Bedford, England, John Bunyan was a poor, unskilled tinker by trade.

In 1657, at age 29, he became a Baptist minister and was arrested for having religious meetings, being imprisoned 1660-1672 and 1675-1676.

John Bunyan wrote in a Relation of My Imprisonment:

“The justice…issued out his warrant to take me…as if we that were to meet together…to do some fearful business, to the destruction of the country; when alas! the constable, when he came in, found us only with our Bibles in our hands, ready to speak and hear the word of God…

So I was taken and forced to depart…

But before I went away, I spake some few words of counsel and encouragement to the people, declaring to them…that they would not be discouraged, for it was a mercy to suffer upon so good account…we suffer as Christians…better be the persecuted, than the persecutors.”

During his imprisonment, John Bunyan supported his family by making shoelaces.

It was during this time that he began writing The Pilgrim’s Progress, eventually published in 1678.

It was an allegory of a pilgrim, named Christian, who fled from the City of Destruction and was directed by Evangelist to follow the narrow path, overcoming temptations, depressions, deceptions, and persecutions till he reached the Celestial City of Zion.

The friends and dangers Christian meets along the way inspired many subsequent novels, such as:

Mark Twain’s Innocents Abroad or the New Pilgrim’s Progress (1869);

C.S. Lewis’ Pilgrim’s Regress (1933); and

L. Frank Baum’s Wizard of Oz (1900).

The Pilgrim’s Progress was translated into over 100 languages and, after the Bible, was the world’s best-seller for hundreds of years.

It was found in nearly every colonial New England home, along with the Bible and Fox’s Book of Martyrs.

Ben Franklin wrote in his Autobiography:

“From a child I was fond of reading, and all the little money that came into my hands was ever laid out in books. Pleased with The Pilgrim’s Progress, my first collection was of John Bunyan’s works in separate little volumes….

My old favorite author, Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress…has been translated into most of the languages of Europe, and suppose it has been more generally read than any other book, except perhaps the Bible.”

President Grover Cleveland had memorized The Pilgrim’s Progress as a youth, commenting:

“I have always felt that my training as a minister’s son has been more valuable to me as a strengthening influence than any other incident in life.”

President Theodore Roosevelt stated while laying the cornerstone of the office building of the House of Representatives, April 14, 1906:

“In Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress you may recall the description of the man with the muck-rake, the man who could look no way but downward, with the muck-rake in his hand, who was offered a celestial crown for his muck-rake, but who would neither look up nor regard the crown he was offered, but continued to rake to himself the filth of the floor.”

President Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote January 19, 1936:

“When Theodore Roosevelt died, the Secretary of his class at Harvard, in sending classmates a notice of his passing, added this quotation from Pilgrim’s Progress:

‘My sword I give to him that shall succeed me in my pilgrimage, and my courage and skill to him that can get it. My marks and scars I carry with me, to be a witness for me that I have fought His battles who now will be my rewarder.’”

President Ronald Reagan greeted Australia’s Prime Minister, June 30, 1981, referring to John Bunyan:

“Robert Louis Stevenson wrote, ‘We are all travelers in what John Bunyan calls the wilderness of this world. And the best that we find in our travels is an honest friend – they keep us worthy of ourselves.’”

The Pilgrim’s Progress began:

“As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place where was a den, and I laid me down in that place to sleep: and, as I slept, I dreamed a dream.

I dreamed, and behold, I saw a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his back.

I looked, and saw him open the book, and read therein; and, as he read, he wept, and trembled; and, not being able longer to contain, he brake out with a lamentable cry, saying, What shall I do?”

Later in The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan wrote:

“Christian ran thus till he came at a place somewhat ascending, and upon that place stood a cross…So I saw in my dream, that just as Christian came up with the cross, his burden loosed from off his shoulders, and fell from off his back.”

Further in The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan wrote:

“Then said Christian, You make me afraid, but whither shall I fly to be safe?…To go back is nothing but death; to go forward is fear of death, and life-everlasting beyond it. I will yet go forward…

Frighted with the sight of the lions…Christian said to himself again, These beasts range in the night for their prey; and if they should meet with me in the dark…how should I escape being by them torn in pieces?…

He lift up his eyes, and behold there was a very stately palace before him…He entered into a very narrow passage…he espied two lions in the way…The porter at the lodge…perceiving that Christian made a halt as if he would go back, cried unto him, saying,

Is thy strength so small? Fear not the lions, for they are chained, and are placed there for trial of faith where it is, and for discovery of those that had none. Keep in the midst of the path, and no hurt shall come unto thee…

He went on, trembling for fear of the lions, but taking good heed to the directions of the porter; he heard them roar, but they did him no harm…”

John Bunyan continued:

“But now, in this Valley of Humiliation, poor Christian was hard put to it…a foul fiend coming over the field to meet him; his name is Apollyon. Then did Christian begin to be afraid, and to cast in his mind whether to go back or to stand his ground.

But he considered again that he had no armour for his back; and therefore thought that to turn the back to him might give him the greater advantage with ease to pierce him with his darts. Therefore he resolved to venture and stand his ground…”

John Bunyan wrote further:

“The monster was hideous to behold; he was clothed with scales…wings like a dragon, feet like a bear, and out of his belly came fire and smoke…

Apollyon straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said…prepare thyself to die; for I swear by my infernal den, that thou shalt go no further; here will I spill thy soul.

And with that he threw a flaming dart at his breast; but Christian had a shield in his hand, with which he caught it…

Apollyon as fast made at him, throwing darts as thick as hail; by the which, notwithstanding all that Christian could do to avoid it, Apollyon wounded him in his head, his hand, and foot…”

Bunyan concluded:

“This sore combat lasted for above half a day, even till Christian was almost quite spent; for you must know that Christian, by reason of his wounds, must needs grow weaker and weaker…

Christian’s sword flew out of his hand.

Then said Apollyon, I am sure of thee now. And with that he had almost pressed him to death, so that Christian began to despair of life; but as God would have it, while Apollyon was fetching of his last blow, thereby to make a full end of this good man, Christian nimbly stretched out his hand for his sword, and caught it, saying,

Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy; when I fall I shall arise; and with that gave him a deadly thrust, which made him give back…

And with that Apollyon spread forth his dragon’s wings, and sped him away, that Christian for a season saw him no more…

A more unequal match can hardly be, —
Christian must fight an angel; but you see,
The valiant man by handling Sword and Shield,
Doth make him, though a Dragon, quit the field.”


Bill FedererThe Moral Liberal contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s books here.

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It is Dangerous to be Right When the Government is Wrong!


Don Boys, Ph.D.
Few statements by Bible hater Voltaire are worth repeating but this one is worthwhile: “It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong!” People have lost their jobs, been fined, and placed in prison because they dared to tell the truth about their government. There is a big difference in your country and the ruling party. However, principled people have no choice but to tell the truth and accept the consequences.
 
It is the responsibility of all thinking, honest people to stand against those who want to do them harm or imprison them! Or simply to steal some of their freedom “for their own sake” of course. I am not blaming Obama and his czars for seeking to rule since that is what wicked men have always tried to do to lazy, listless, and languid people. I am blaming those who so quickly submitted to his rule with very little or no protest. There are still Christians who defend voting for Obama!
 
I resist, I reject, and I refuse to keep quiet. I will not whimper my objections lying in a fetal position in a semi-dark bedroom but will scream them, almost incoherently, from a mountain top or more precisely from my computer, radio and television, church pulpit, magazines, and street corner if necessary. Obviously, I’m a little appalled, agitated, and angry.
 
George Orwell said, “In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act.” George was right!
America has been stolen from us by the public school system, the media, Hollywood lowlifes, academia, and Liberal politicians. Because lies have been told so often, for so long, and in such enormity, our enemy is perceived as correct and exemplary while common, calm, and cautious people are thought to be corrupt and extremists!
 
It is shocking that so many people think it is wrong to speak out against their government when that is exactly what all patriots should be doing. It is not disloyal to criticize your president. An informed, indignant, and impatient patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government. Theodore Roosevelt said, “That we are to stand by the president, right or wrong is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.” That’s one Roosevelt who was right.
 
My government is wrong and I am right about welfare. How can any thinking person defend, let alone promote, taking money from the rich and giving it to the poor? However, Obama, socialistic Democrats, and RINOs make that argument without shame or apology. Obama seems to think he is the Sheriff of Nottingham one day and Robin Hood the next day. Of course, the Sheriff was a tyrant and Robin was a thief. Obama is more like the winsome “Thief of Bagdad,” who somehow conjured, cheated, and cajoled enough people to elect him President of the United States. Maybe we will all wake up, rub our eyes, stretch, then realize that it has all been a bad dream or, more appropriately, a bone-chilling nightmare!
 
How can principled people permit government to continue taking care of them into eternity? Don’t they have any self-respect, ambition, or character? It is difficult to justify even a temporary handout but a perpetual handout that is thought to be deserved is shocking, shameless, and stupid. It is time to stop taking from the producers and giving to the parasites. To continue is illegal, insane, and insipid. If government continues to take from Peter to give to Paul, it can always expect Paul to be its supporter. My name is “Peter” and I want Obama’s hand out of my back pocket.
 
We have lived so long with the butchering of innocent babies that even Christians are insensitive to the slaughter. Yet “normal” people defend that sinful act as if it is noble, if not nice. The sin/crime is compounded by forcing taxpayers to fund the killings! Obama even voted against a bill to protect the life of aborted babies that somehow managed to live. Moreover, his wife lobbied for a partial birth abortion bill! Pharaoh of Egypt waited until after the babies were born to butcher them!
 
We are told that perversion is now legal, even respectable. You can call perversion (sodomy) by any name you want but it is still abnormal, aberrant, and abominable. You can put lipstick, rouge, and eye shadow on a dirty hog, but it is still a dirty hog–and sane, honest people can see what it is. By declaring that it is a dirty, fat, gross hog, does not mean we hate the hog. No, we simply see before us a dirty, fat, gross hog and calling it something else changes nothing. It only makes the “hogs are beautiful” crowd look silly, blind, or dishonest. Maybe all three!
 
Now we are told that homosexuals not only have a right to sleep together but we must respect and appreciate their “many contributions” to society (such as AIDS?). Of course, they demand the “right” to get married, (don’t expect a wedding gift from me) adopt children, join our churches (without repentance), teach our children and be accepted as normal people. No, not as long as Christian people exist, but then that could change also with the lack of commitment of modern Christians.
 
If Obama has the power to make you believe in absurdities such as welfare, abortion, and sodomy, he has the power to justify and force you to believe and agree to anything. However, Christians don’t permit government to decide what is right; that is God’s decision as expressed in the scriptures.
 
We must never confuse principled disagreement with government policies, people, and programs with pernicious disloyalty to your country. The first should be promoted and the second prosecuted. Whatever the result, I will decide, not anyone else, what is right for me and if the government is wrong, I will tell them they are–whatever the result.
 
(Dr. Don Boys is a former member of the Indiana House of Representatives, author of 14 books, frequent guest on television and radio talk shows, and wrote columns for USA Today for 8 years. Three years ago, the second edition of ISLAM: America’s Trojan Horse! was published, and his new eBook, The God Haters isavailable for $9.99 from http://www.thegodhaters.com. These columns go to newspapers, magazines, television, and radio stations. His other web sites are http://www.cstnews.com and http://www.Muslimfact.com. Contact Don for an interview or talk show.)
 
Copyright 2012, Don Boys, Ph.D.
 

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