The moon is waning. The morning stars are Mercury, Venus, Mars and Saturn. The evening stars are Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Scorpio. They include Socialist presidential candidate Eugene V. Debs in 1855; historians Ida Tarbell in 1857 and Will Durant in 1885; inventor and industrialist Raymond Loewy, the "father of streamlining," in 1893; band leader Jan Garber in 1897; movie singing cowboy star Roy Rogers in 1911; musicians Ike Turner in 1931 (age 76) and Art Garfunkel in 1941 (age 66); actresses Vivien Leigh in 1913, Elke Sommer in 1940 (age 67) and Tatum O'Neal in 1963 (age 44); dramatist/actor Sam Shepard in 1943 (age 64); and pop singer/songwriter Bryan Adams in 1959 (age 48).
On this date in history:
In 1605, Guy Fawkes and fellow conspirators attempted to blow up the English Parliament and failed. They were beheaded.
In 1733, German-born publisher John Peter Zenger began printing The New York Weekly Journal in opposition to the British colonial administration.
In 1854, combined British-French forces scored a decisive victory over the Russians in the Crimea.
In 1930, the first commercial television broadcast was aired.
In 1940, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was re-elected to an unprecedented third term.
In 1990, an Egyptian-born gunman, apparently acting alone, assassinated Meir Kahane, the U.S. native who founded the militant Jewish Defense League.
Also in 1990, the U.S. Supreme Court let stand an order requiring the U.S. Army to permit homosexuals to re-enlist.
In 1991, the body of British media mogul Robert Maxwell was found floating in the Atlantic Ocean off the Canary Islands.
Also in 1991, Kiichi Miyazawa was formally appointed premier of Japan, succeeding Toshiki Kaifu.
In 1992, former U.S. world chess champion Bobby Fischer triumphed in his $5 million rematch against Russian arch-rival Boris Spassky.
In 2002, Republicans seized control of the U.S. Senate and retained their hold on the House, giving President George Bush a historic victory in mid-term elections that traditionally go against the incumbent president.
In 2003, fearing a regional military imbalance, the United States supplied Thailand with air-to-air missiles.
In 2004, the Texas Board of Education approved middle school textbooks after publishers made changes defining marriage as being between a man and a woman.
Also in 2004, Saskatchewan became the seventh Canadian province to allow same-sex couples to marry.
In 2005, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter said there was no doubt the United States had been given false information in order to support the war in Iraq.
Also in 2005, thousands of U.S. and Iraqi forces engaged in a fight against al-Qaida terrorists in Iraq near the Syrian border.
In 2006, former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein faced death by hanging after his conviction in Baghdad in a yearlong trial for the 1982 slaughter of 148 Shiite boys and men in the village of Dujail. The sentence was upheld on appeal and was carried out on Dec.30. Saddam, 69, had been dictator of Iraq from 1979 until overthrown in 2003 by the U.S.-led invasion.
A thought for the day: inventor and industrialist Raymond Loewy said, "Between two products equal in price, function and quality, the better looking will out sell the other."