Sometime in 2011 my friend, Jeffrey Bennett, suggested I compile four or five articles from each of the subjects I had been writing upon and submit them to him for publication in book form. The result of this project was my first book, Ross Unmasked: An Angry American Speaks Out. When I finally held a finished copy of the book in my hands I was proud of the fact that I had finally become a published author. Now, five years after publication, I look back and find the title a bit misleading as I was not truly angry at the time it was published. However, that was then and this is now; and let me tell you, anger doesn’t come close to describing how I often feel.
The subject matter I write about is not that difficult to understand; at least not if you graduated from high school with a certain degree of literacy. The hard part, at least for me anyway, was in accepting what I was reading when it conflicted with what I had been taught. After all, what good is knowledge if one does not put it to use? If one encounters facts which contradict with their existing beliefs they have but two choices; they can either change their existing beliefs to conform to the facts they have learned, or they can reject the facts they have learned and go on believing falsehoods. Continue reading
Last night I did something I rarely do these days; I sat down and watched an hour of the evening news. During that hour the local news ran a story about how the House Republicans have postponed a vote on President Trump’s healthcare bill due to the fact that Senator John McCain is out for surgery, and they need all the votes they can get if they want this bill to pass.
During the story the seed for this article was planted when the news showed a woman standing on a stage saying, “How dare the Republicans try to take away health care from millions of people.” So many thoughts ran through my head in the seconds that followed that statement that I could write a treatise based on them alone. Fortunately for you I want to keep my thoughts focused on one primary subject; this idea of entitlement to things people in America have today. Continue reading
It has been my experience that there is one thing most people give little thought to; that being the foundation upon which other things are built. Take the foundation of your house for example, it is always there providing support for the dwelling you reside in; but how often do you think about its security and stability? Yet were it to fail your home may suffer all kinds of problems; up to and including a complete collapse.
Or one could take a tree as another example. A tree derives its strength, and sustenance, from its root system. If a tree has a strong root system it will remain healthy and strong. Conversely, if a tree’s root system is weak then it could become subject to disease, and the slightest storm could uproot it.
If you look to the dictionary you would find that the word foundation has two meanings. The first is: the lowest load-bearing part of a building, typically below ground level. The second, and the one I’m more interested in, is; an underlying basis or principle for something. Continue reading
© Steven Michael
The other day, while out shopping for our weekly groceries I noticed quite a few people stocking up on meat and beer; presumably for barbecues to celebrate the upcoming holiday on July 4. I wonder how many of those stocking up on supplies, or anyone else for that matter, know what it is that transpired on July 4th that makes it a National Holiday.
I would hope that at least half of the people living in America would at least be able to tell me that July 4th celebrates Independence Day; but even that is not quite true. I wonder how many actually know the timeline of events which led to America becoming a free and independent nation.
Are you aware that in June of 1776 the Second Continental Congress met and a formal declaration was issued by Richard Henry Lee, (Uncle to the yet to be born Robert E. Lee), which stated, “Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.” Continue reading
© Steven Michael
Independence Day is just around the corner and before it arrives I have a few choice words for a certain segment of society; specifically those who deny the truth about the Civil War, those who say the North fought a righteous war to end the evil institution of slavery, and particularly those who are seeking to remove from public view all that pertains to the history of the Confederacy.
Buckle up kiddies, the rides about to get rough!
First of all, how many of you actually know that the formal declaration of independence from England took place not on July 4, but on July 2, 1776? In writing to his wife Abigail, John Adams declared, “The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.” Continue reading
(A Follow Up To My Independence Day Rant)
Imagine how you would feel if someone were to slander or libel you; that is assuming you know what slander and libel are. Slander is the crime of making a false statement that is damaging to a person’s reputation. Libel is the same thing, only in this instance the damaging statement is in written form. While neither are crimes per se; that is a person cannot go to jail for them, they can be sued and damages awarded to the victim if the jury finds the person accused of committing them guilty.
Now imagine that you are very well known and someone does that to you; how fast do you think word would spread; how long before everyone believed you to be guilty of something you had not done? Imagine that you went to your grave without ever being able to repair the damage done your reputation. Or worse, imagine that years after your death someone accuses you of something you hadn’t done and the general public accepts it as the truth. Continue reading
My first exposure to political correctness came many years ago when they changed the name of the people who collected refuse from garbage men to waste management specialists. Back then we thought political correctness was both silly and harmless; I sure wish we had taken it more seriously and recognized it for the threat it posed.
But it was just this morning that I think I heard the pinnacle of politically correct speech when I read the following on a Facebook thread; “Women deserve control of their reproductive rights.” Reproductive rights huh? Boy, that’s a good one; they outdid themselves with that one, that’s for sure. Continue reading
“Five percent of the people think; ten percent of the people think they think; and the other eighty-five percent would rather die than think.” ~ (Anonymous But Often Attributed to Thomas Edison)
It is a sad reflection of American society today that very few people actually perform the vital task of critical thinking anymore. Everyone thinks, but not everyone critically thinks. Critical thinking is a discipline which must be taught, or at least nurtured for it to become habit. But what exactly is critical thinking?
In researching for this article I found dozens of definitions for critical thinking, but each of them had certain similarities. My definition for critical thinking is as follows: Critical thinking is the unbiased, thorough study of information; facts and evidence, which is then used to formulate an opinion or belief system.
Using that as your definition, how many of you can honestly say that you think critically? How many people base their beliefs, not upon facts, but upon emotional responses to the issues? How many people take as gospel the things said by others in positions of authority, supposed experts in the field, or worse, the comments made by celebrities who support certain causes? Next, how many people can honestly say that they have the courage to examine evidence which conflicts with their existing beliefs with anything close to an open mind? Finally, and probably most importantly, how many are willing to change their beliefs entirely if the facts prove them wrong? Continue reading
On July 5, 1943 the United States Navy got word that the Japanese Navy was making another run, nicknamed the Tokyo Express, to shuttle supplies to their troops in the Solomon Islands.
A task force, consisting of three light cruisers and four destroyers, led by Rear Admiral Walden Ainsworth moved to intercept and engage them.
Among the four light cruisers was the USS Helena, (CL-50). Aboard this ship were two young sailors, Donald Eugene Ross, (my father) and Neal Hampton Rood, (his best friend). Continue reading
If someone were to ask you what defines a nation, how would you respond? If you were to ask me I would say it is the people who define a nation; through their values and beliefs. God may have given us this beautiful country to inhabit; full of an abundance of resources, but it is the people that occupy any country who give it its character; who define it. Simply put, a country is either good or bad based upon the people who inhabit it.
So if it is people who define a nation, then I suppose the next logical question is; what defines the people who inhabit a nation? It is said that a house divided cannot stand; and that is true as it pertains to nations as well. Continue reading
What suffers under political correctness is the free and open discussion of ideas, the exchange of facts and information; because inevitably the truth gets sidelined because it is often considered politically incorrect. ~ N. Ross
On a warm summer evening, just a couple weeks before our nation celebrated its bicentennial I walked across a stage in Oroville, California, and made the transition from childhood to responsible adult. Prior to that evening in June 1976 I was a student, now I was expected to make my way forward with all that knowledge I had been so graciously given by the public school system.
I would love to go back and repeat those last 4 years at high school; knowing what I know now. I’d probably never make it to graduation ceremony; I’d probably be expelled for arguing with my history teachers long before then. But that is neither here or there, or as the old saying goes, germane to the subject under discussion. Continue reading
It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. ~ Robert E. Lee, (Upon watching a Union charge stopped at the Battle of Fredericksburg, 13 December 1862)
I’d be willing to bet that most people did not know that the Colonists lived relatively peacefully under British rule for 145 years before the British passed the Stamp Act; which ultimately led to the American Revolution. I’d also be willing to bet that most people don’t know that it has been 152 years since the Civil War, (or America’s Second War For Independence as I prefer to call it), ended. Why are those numbers important? Well let me precede my thoughts on the subject with a quote taken from a letter Thomas Jefferson wrote to William Smith in 1787, “What country before ever existed a century and half without a rebellion? And what country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
What I’m beginning to believe, and fear for that matter, is that America is overdue for another such rebellion. Continue reading
“A wise man seeks out the truth; a foolish one rejects it, or allows it to be silenced.” ~ Book of Ross; 4:45
There is an evil, a pestilence, which is spreading across America which goes by the name of Political Correctness. According to Merriam Webster’s Dictionary, political correctness is defined as: conforming to a belief that language and practices which could offend political sensibilities (as in matters of sex or race) should be eliminated. You can call it whatever you want, cloak it under whatever disguise you want, but when all is said and done, it is nothing other than censorship.
Who and what defines what is, and what isn’t politically correct? Is it politically incorrect to say something, or display an image, simply because someone or some group takes offense to it? If being offended is the only guideline that establishes what is politically incorrect then we may as well just pass a law forbidding speech, or the displaying of any images; as there will always be someone who takes offense to something. Continue reading
Imagine for a moment that you have awoken in a strange room. You look around and do not recognize any of your surroundings. You get up and go into the bathroom to splash some water on your face and you do not recognize the image staring back at you in the mirror. You begin to panic because you have come to the realization that you don’t know your own name, where you work, where you were born; your memory is a complete blank.
Although not common, this condition has a medical term assigned to it; amnesia. Amnesia is defined as the partial or complete loss of memory; usually due to brain injury, shock, fatigue, repression, or illness. But what is amnesia if it is not the loss of a part of your history?
Each of us have our own distinct history; from the moment we are born until the moment we die our history is being written by the things we do, the things we learn and the events we witness. What if in one clean sweep all those memories were wiped away; leaving you with nothing to define who and what you are? Continue reading
Many a year ago, almost 40 to be exact, I raised my right hand and swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies; both foreign and domestic. Thus began my service as a United States airman in the Air Force; service I would give for over 13 years of my life; both stateside and overseas. I remained in the Air Force until upper management allowed it to get so bloated with E-5’s that they had to do something to thin the ranks. So they offered severance pay for E-5’s as an option to get people to voluntarily separate; an option I took advantage of, and I once again found myself a civilian. Continue reading
In 1821 Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to Spencer Roane in which he said, “Time indeed changes manners and notions and so far we must expect institutions to bend to them. But time produces also corruption of principles, and against this it is the duty of good citizens to be ever on the watch, and if the gangrene is to prevail at last, let the day be kept off as long as possible.”
I have often wondered how the people of this country would react to a political debate between someone like Thomas Jefferson and any of the leading political figures from either the Republican or Democratic parties. Although I can pretty much guess the outcome, it would be interesting to see just how small a percentage of Americans who would support Jefferson’s views on the purposes for which government was established and the nature of their rights. Continue reading
There will come a time when we will sit down to the banquet of our consequences. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson
The other day I read an article which piqued my interest. It seems that San Francisco 49er Quarterback Colin Kaepernick is angry that no teams have made him an offer since becoming a free agent. While I enjoy watching a good football game I’m not what you would call a fan of football. But this story piqued my interest for another reason. I feel it is representative of a problem that permeates society today; the fact that a great many people do not accept the fact that there are consequences to their actions.
Whether I personally agree or disagree with Mr. Kaepernick’s refusal to stand during the playing of the national anthem is irrelevant, I support his right to protest whatever cause he chooses to support by remaining seated during the playing of that song. But it seems he has forgotten that he is not only an employee of the 49er franchise, he is also a representative of the National Football League, and his actions caused a tidal wave of angry responses from patriotic football fans who felt the he had disgraced and dishonored his country. No one wants to be the one who hires someone who could blemish their reputation or bring discredit to their franchise. Continue reading
I wonder how many parents out there have ever stopped to think about what their expectations are from the public school system they send their children to for a good portion of their formative years. What I’m saying is, I wonder how many people have stopped to think about what they want their child to have learned by the time they get their high school diploma.
Of all the answers that parents may come up with, I wonder if the skill of critical thinking is among them. When I was a child, navigating my way through the public school system, I was given weekly reading assignments and told that at the end of the week I would need to write a book report on what I’d read. These book reports were not to be synopses of the story; rather they were to be my reaction to what I’d read; which I would have to back up by specific passages from the book. Continue reading
Do you know what hypocrisy is? Hypocrisy is defined as the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform. Hypocrisy comes in many shapes, sizes, and it often disguises itself under the titles of double-standards, selective outrage, lack of intellectual integrity, political correctness, and an aversion to facts.
Hypocrisy is saying you believe in freedom of speech, then turning around and denying someone the right to speak their mind because their words or ideas offend you. Continue reading
I just had someone ask me an interesting question on Facebook. Someone I’d never met before asked me if I was a Libertarian. While I am not big on the idea of labels; I believe they confine and restrict you, I suppose if one were to apply one that fit with my way of thinking, calling me a Libertarian is probably pretty close.
Libertarianism, simply put, is a belief system based upon the concept of individual liberty with a heavy dose of distrust and skepticism for political power and authority. At first glance that may sound like the perfect definition of me but I am not one who believes that mankind can do without some form of government. It is like James Madison said in Federalist 51, “If men were angels no government would be necessary.” Continue reading
I know that many of you, by now anyway, are at least aware of the situation in Northern California and the crisis at the dam located in Oroville, California. Before I go into the meat and potatoes of this, I need to provide a little background.
When I was 10 or 11 I moved from San Jose, California to Oroville, just south of the dam that was designed to both store, and regulate the flow of water from the tributaries feeding into the Feather River. I used to fish off the face of the dam, as well as on a peninsula that extended parallel to the inlet to the spillway. I can’t count the times I went fishing on the lake itself, or went waterskiing or tubing on the lake. So I am quite familiar with the layout; although not the particulars of the construction of the dam itself. Continue reading
Recently I’ve been hearing with increasing frequency the use of the word Snowflake to describe certain people, or categories of people, in the United States. I understood the basic context the word was used as, but had to look it up to see what the actual meaning was. According to various sources a Snowflake, or the Snowflake Generation, is a term used to characterize young adults as being prone to taking offence at ideas that challenge their beliefs, and are less resilient than previous generations to insults or views that differ from their own. I suppose the term is fitting, because just like a real life snowflake, when it gets hot they have a meltdown. Continue reading
The day was September 17, 1787 and the delegates to the Philadelphia Convention were to gather together one final time to cast their votes for or against the document they had produced. Some had left the convention earlier; stating they felt the convention had overstepped its just authority, while others had pushed on with their plan to scrap the Articles of Confederation and create an entirely new system of government for America. Continue reading
(Violence Has A Way of Coming Back to Bite You In the Ass)
As I sit here savoring the first few sips of my morning coffee a question keeps running over and over in my mind: How much longer does America have before things get totally out of control? What I’m seeing going on in America today leaves me wondering how long before the sporadic violence we are seeing becomes commonplace and more extensive.
All through the recent election cycle I saw hints of things to come from those who opposed Donald Trump. There were those who attended his campaign rallies; not to hear what he had to say, but to disrupt them so that others could not hear what he had to say. Trump supporters were insulted, and sometimes attacked; just because they supported a candidate others did not like. Continue reading
The idea for this came to me as I was on the phone this morning with Jeffrey Bennett; publisher and host of both The Federal Observer and Metropolis Café. I hope all who read it will take what I say into consideration. ~ Neal
I know that recently my commentaries have taken a somewhat negative tone, and I apologize for it. A little over 18 years ago I was just an average Joe working, paying bills, and with my spare time being spent watching whatever was on the television. But then something happened, something I’ve yet to fully understand myself; but I became interested in learning as much as I could about the system of government established by our Founders over 200 years ago.
Once I began learning a few things it was as if an insatiable thirst for the truth had arisen in me, and I sought far and wide for every document, speech, and tidbit I could about the history of this place we call America. Continue reading
If you could name one thing that each of us has that sets us apart from each and every other human being on the planet, what would it be? I’ll give you a few moments to ponder that before I continue…
While some of you may have answered DNA; that is not the answer I was looking for. DNA is more the recipe of ingredients which makes you short or tall, blonde or brunette, light skinned or dark complexioned. No, what I was looking for was something about each of us that sets us apart from the people all around us. So I’ll give you another moment to think about your answers… Continue reading
Sometimes I have to shake my head in amazement at how little people know about certain things; especially things they often take so seriously. Take political parties for instance; how much do people really know about them, and their history? Take for instance the Democrats; those aligning themselves with that party tend to be the ones who are most outspoken against any, and all, things Confederate. They also are the most outspoken about the rights of minorities. According to most of them the South was to blame for the Civil War due to the Southerners owning slaves. Bet they didn’t know that most Southerners were also Democrats. Bet they didn’t know that of those who originally formed the Ku Klux Klan, most were also Democrats. Continue reading
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I’m used to arguing with people over slavery being the sole cause of the Civil War; it is what they were taught in schools and I can, at least, understand why they are so vehement in their beliefs. However, the other day I read an article that left me flabbergasted; and then the comments following it showed that there were many who supported the claims made by the author.
The basic premise of this article was that if Robert E. Lee had not accepted command of the Confederate Army the Civil War would not have happened and all those people would not have died.
First off, Lee did not immediately accept the position of Commander of the Confederate Army; he was assigned command of the Army of Northern Virginia. Virginia, if you were not aware of this, did not secede from the Union until Abraham Lincoln called out for volunteers to suppress the rebellion in those States which had already seceded. (Continue…)
The following by noted contributor, Neal Ross – was originally posted in response to another reader’s comments about the potential for a citizen uprising in America today – a ‘Revolution’ as it were. Neal’s’ assessment of the then and now situations is worth a single posting of it’s own. ~ J.B.
The problem, or difference as I see it between then and now is that back then with the third that was Tories they either relocated to England when America declared independence, or they accepted the outcome of the Revolution when we won. The other 33% went with the flow and would have continued as British subjects had we lost, or continued on as free Americans. It didn’t matter one way or the other to them. Continue reading
I’m going to come right out and say it; in a society where we are supposed to self governing, what good is a Constitution when the overwhelming majority of the people do not know, or care, what it says are the powers given the government it establishes? Continue reading