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The almanac

By United Press International   |   Jan. 29, 2012 at 3:30 AM
Today is Sunday, Jan. 29, the 29th day of 2012 with 337 to follow.

The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Mercury, Mars and Saturn. The evening stars are Jupiter, Uranus, Venus and Neptune.


Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include Swedish scientist and philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg in 1688; American colonial political philosopher Thomas Paine in 1736; William McKinley, 25th president of the United States, in 1843; Russian dramatist Anton Chekhov in 1860; businessman John D. Rockefeller Jr. in 1874; comic actor W.C. Fields in 1880; dramatist Paddy Chayefsky in 1923; actors Victor Mature in 1913, John Forsythe in 1918; Katharine Ross in 1940 (age 72), Tom Selleck in 1945 (age 67) and Ann Jillian in 1950 (age 62); writer Germaine Greer in 1939 (age 73); TV personality Oprah Winfrey in 1954 (age 58); Olympic gold medal-winning diver Greg Louganis in 1960 (age 51); and actors Nick Turturro in 1962 (age 49), Heather Graham in 1970 (age 42) and Sara Gilbert in 1975 (age 37).


On this date in history:

In 1820, 10 years after mental illness forced him to retire from public life, King George III, the British king who lost the American colonies, died at the age of 82.

In 1845, Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven" was published.

In 1861, Kansas became the 34th state of the United States. It joined as a free or non-slavery state at a time when Southern states were seceding from the Union.

In 1886, German Karl Benz awarded a patent for the gasoline-driven automobile.

In 1900, eight baseball teams were organized as the professional American League. They were in Buffalo, N.Y.; Chicago; Cleveland; Detroit; Indianapolis; Kansas City, Mo.; Milwaukee; and Minneapolis.

In 1936, first class of inductees announced for Baseball Hall of Fame. The first players inducted were Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth and Honus Wagner.

In 1963, first class of inductees announced for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The firs members included Sammy Baugh, Harold "Red" Grange, George Halas, Don Hutson, Earl "Curly" Lambeau, Bronko Nagurski and Jim Thrope.

In 1979, Deng Xiaoping, deputy premier of China, and U.S. President Jimmy Carter signed accords that reversed decades of U.S. opposition to the People's Republic of China.

In 1991, the United States and the Soviet Union announced they would agree to a cease-fire in the Gulf War if Iraq made an "unequivocal commitment to withdraw from Kuwait."

Also in 1991, in South Africa, the Africa National Congress and the Inkatha Freedom Party agreed to end their rivalry.

In 1995, the San Francisco 49ers became the first team to win five Super Bowls when they routed the San Diego Chargers, 49-26.

In 1996, France announced that it would stop open-air nuclear testing.

In 2000, delegates from more than 130 nations meeting in Montreal adopted the first global treaty regulating trade in genetically modified food products.

In 2002, U.S. President George W. Bush warned in his State of the Union address that the war on terrorism was just beginning with thousands of potential terrorists "spread throughout the world like ticking time bombs." It was in this speech he referred to Iran, Iraq and North Korea as part of an "Axis of Evil."

In 2003, the U.S. Congressional Budget Office said the year's federal deficit would soar to $199 billion.

In 2004, a Palestinian suicide bomber killed 11 people on a Jerusalem bus and injured 50 others. The blast disrupted the latest round of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

In 2005, Israel and the United States began efforts to talk EU officials into joining them in efforts to halt Iran's nuclear weapons program.

In 2006, Kuwait's new ruler, Sheik Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah, was sworn in to replace ailing Emir Sheik Saad Abdullah al-Sabah.

In 2008, federal reports alleged substandard care at a veterans' hospital in Marion, Ill., had contributed to 19 deaths over the past two years.

Also in 2008, Brazil said it was talking with France about obtaining the technology it needs to build the first nuclear-powered submarine in Latin America.

In 2009, impeached Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was convicted of abuse of power by an almost unanimous vote by members of the state House and Senate and removed from office.

Also in 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama signed his first bill into law, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, expanding workers' rights to sue in pay disputes.

In 2010, the U.S. Commerce Department announced that the gross national product grew at an annual rate of 5.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009, fastest growth in six years. However, the United States lost 20,000 jobs in January, though unemployment improved from 10 percent to 9.7 percent.

Also in 2010, Scott Roeder was convicted of first-degree murder in the 2009 Wichita, Kansas, church slaying of Dr. George Tiller, noted for performing late-term abortions. Roeder, 52, was sentenced to life in prison.

In 2011, after a week of violent anti-government protests in Cairo with thousands involved, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak called out the army to stop demonstrations and said he had ordered Cabinet ministers to resign but that he would retain power.


A thought for the day: there's a Chinese proverb that says, "Teachers open the door but you must enter by yourself."

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