Today is Thursday, Feb. 2, the 33rd day of 2006 with 332 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Jupiter, Pluto and Venus. The evening stars are Mars, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Mercury.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include French statesman Charles de Talleyrand in 1754; psychologist Havelock Ellis in 1859; Irish novelist James Joyce in 1882; Charles Correll, Andy of radio's "Amos and Andy" program, in 1890; National Football League co-founder George Halas in 1895; violinist Jascha Heifetz in 1901; novelist Ayn Rand in 1905; actor Gale Gordon in 1906; columnist Liz Smith in 1923 (age 83); comedian Tom Smothers in 1937 (age 69); singer Graham Nash in 1942 (age 64); actress Farrah Fawcett in 1947 (age 59); model Christie Brinkley in 1953 (age 53); and actor Michael T. Weiss ("The Pretender") in 1962 (age 44).
On this date in history:
In 1848, the war between the United States and Mexico formally ended with the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. It provided for Mexico's cession to the U.S. of the territory that became the states of New Mexico, Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah, and parts of Colorado and Wyoming in exchange for $15 million.
In 1876, the National Baseball League was formed, with teams in Boston; Chicago; Cincinnati; New York; Philadelphia; St. Louis; Louisville, Ky.; and Hartford, Conn.
In 1933, two days after becoming chancellor of Germany, Adolf Hitler ordered dissolution of the German Parliament.
In 1990, South African President F.W. de Klerk announced he would free Nelson Mandela and lift a 30-year ban on the African National Congress. Mandela was released nine days later.
In 1991, allied forces in the Persian Gulf War declared they were in control in the air and at sea.
In 1992, one day after agreeing to withdraw its troops from Lithuania, Russia reached a similar agreement with Latvia and opened talks with Estonia.
In 1993, more than 7,500 UMW miners went on strike against the Peabody Coal Co., the nation's largest coal producer.
Also in 1993, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton banned smoking in the White House.
In 1998, President Bill Clinton submitted the first balanced federal budget in 29 years.
In 2002, a report requested by the board of directors of the troubled Enron Corporation accused top executives of forcing the company into bankruptcy by, among other things, inflating profits by almost $1 billion.
In 2003, Vaclav Havel, the playwright who became a president, stepped down after his second five-year term as head of the Czech Republic.
In 2004, the Bush administration said a bipartisan commission would investigate why pre-war intelligence reports that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction apparently had been wrong.
Also in 2004, President George W. Bush asked Congress for $2.4 trillion to fund government programs for fiscal year 2005.
In 2005, Pope John Paul II was well enough to say mass with his private secretary in Rome, one day after the 84-year-old pontiff was hospitalized with a breathing problem and the flu.
Also in 2005, in a wide-ranging State of the Union address, President George W. Bush said that U.S. troops would remain in Iraq until Iraqis can provide their own security.
A thought for the day: Robert Frost said, "Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence."