Book Review: The First Air War: 1914-1918

December 1st, 2017 No comments

The First Air War: 1914-1918 by [Kennett, Lee]

Only a decade or so after the Wright Brothers’ first flight, the airplane went to war, which proves that when motivated by self-preservation government can move rather quickly.  While most of us pilots have a rather myopic view of the importance of the duels in the air by the likes of Rickenbacker and von Richtofen, Lee Kennett puts aviation’s role in the “War to End All Wars” into proper perspective as more of a supporting player–but certainly one that would quickly move to center stage just two decades later.  (4 of 5 Stars)

Link to The First Air War on Amazon

Categories: What I've Read

The Analects of Mudcat: Efficiency

November 27th, 2017 No comments

“There is a dotted line between efficiency and laziness.”

~M.T. Bass

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ITB140306 - In the Black - Novel Cover - VW w180

Available at Amazon.com

Patriotic Flag

November 25th, 2017 No comments

By the President of the United States of America. a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor—and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be—That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks—for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation—for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war—for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed—for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted—for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

and also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions—to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually—to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed—to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord—To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us—and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New-York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Go: Washington

Categories: Shaving the Yak

POW-MIA Flag

November 18th, 2017 No comments

November 13, 1982 — The Vietnam Veterans Memorial dedicated in Washington, DC.

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ITB140306 - In the Black - Novel Cover - VW w180

Available at Amazon.com

Categories: Shaving the Yak

Book Review: Eddie Rickenbacker, An American Hero

November 17th, 2017 No comments

Eddie Rickenbacker: An American Hero by [Adamson, Hans Christian]

If Rickenbacker were alive today, I can’t help but believe he’d be one of the wizards of Silicon Valley.  An American Hero gives a fascinating account of his involvement, first, in the emerging automobile industry at the turn of the Twentieth Century — as a factory worker, a car salesman, a successful race car driver and team owner, then as a designer and manufacturer of his own brand and owner of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. With the coming of World War I, he set his sights (so to speak) on aviation and finagled his way into becoming Billy Mitchell’s personal driver as a stepping stone to a set of Army pilot wings and a seat in the cockpit of a “Hat-in-the-Ring” pursuit plane. From there he became the 94th Squadron commander, America’s leading ace and eventually president of Eastern Airlines.  Written before the final chapter of Rickenbacker’s life was closed, this unfinished bio is not only the story of an amazing man, but in its narrative style is also a glimpse into a by-gone era.  (4 of 5 Stars)

Link to An American Hero on Amazon

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