Today is Wednesday, Nov. 8, the 312th day of 2006 with 53 to follow.
The moon is waning. The morning stars are Saturn and Mars. The evening stars are Jupiter, Mercury, Pluto, Venus, Uranus and Neptune.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Scorpio. They include British astronomer Edmond Halley in 1656; author Margaret Mitchell ("Gone With the Wind") in 1900; actress June Havoc in 1916 (age 90); heart transplant pioneer Dr. Christiaan Barnard in 1922; TV journalist Morley Safer ("60 Minutes") in 1931 (age 75); singers Patti Page in 1927 (age 79), Minnie Riperton in 1947 and Bonnie Raitt in 1949 (age 57); TV personality Mary Hart in 1950 (age 56); actress Alfre Woodard in 1952 (age 54); singer Ricki Lee Jones in 1954 (age 52); and actresses Courtney Thorne-Smith in 1967 (age 39) and Parker Posey in 1968 (age 38).
On this date in history:
In 1793, the Louvre in Paris, now containing one of the world's richest art collections, became a public museum after two centuries as a royal palace.
In 1837, Mount Holyoke Seminary in Massachusetts became the first U.S. college founded exclusively for women.
In 1864, as the U.S. Civil War raged, Abraham Lincoln was elected to his second term as president. He was assassinated five months later.
In 1889, Montana was admitted to the union as the 41st state.
In 1895, physicist Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen discovered X-rays.
In 1942, as World War II raged on, more than 400,000 Allied soldiers invaded North Africa.
In 1982, a smoky fire set by a prisoner in a Biloxi, Miss., jail killed 28 people.
In 1985, a judge overturned Rubin "Hurricane" Carter's conviction for a 1966 triple murder in a Patterson, N.J., bar, freeing the former boxer after 19 years in prison.
In 1988, U.S. Vice President George Herbert Walker Bush was elected the 41st president of the United States.
In 1991, the European Community imposed an economic embargo on Yugoslavia in an effort to halt the civil war.
In 1994, in a stunning upset, Republican candidates swept the general election, regaining control of both chambers of the U.S. Congress. It marked the first time in 40 years the Republicans controlled both the House and the Senate.
In 2001, a top aide said U.S. President George Bush had "no plans" to meet with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat at the U.N. General Assembly because in the U.S. view Arafat had not done enough to stop the violence in Israel and the West Bank.
In 2002, the U.N. Security Council unanimously approved a tough, new U.S.-British sponsored resolution authorizing the return of weapons inspectors to Iraq and "serious consequences" if Baghdad failed to cooperate.
Also in 2002, U.S. President George W. Bush assured a Muslim audience that the United States' war was against a network of terrorists and not against the Islamic religion or Muslim civilization.
In 2003, a suicide bomb attack on an Arab residential compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, killed 18 and wounded 110.
In 2004, in a long-awaited offensive, thousands of U.S. troops attacked one of the toughest Sunni insurgent strongholds in Fallujah, Iraq.
Also in 2004, the U.S. government authorized the first airline to equip aircraft with electric stun guns as a security measure. Korean Air has 50 flights into the United States each week.
In 2005, a defense lawyer for one of deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's co-defendants was gunned down in Baghdad.
Also in 2005, French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin declared a state of emergency in a bid to quell the nation's worst rioting in decades.
A thought for the day: author George Sand wrote, "We cannot tear out a single page of our life, but we can throw the whole book in the fire."