The almanac

By United Press International  |  July 12, 2011 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Tuesday, July 12, the 193rd day of 2011 with 172 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include Roman leader Julius Caesar in 100 B.C.; American writer Henry David Thoreau in 1817; photography pioneer George Eastman in 1854; scientist George Washington Carver in 1864; Italian painter and sculptor Amedeo Modigliani in 1884; composer Oscar Hammerstein II and author-architect R. Buckminster Fuller, inventor of the geodesic dome, both in 1895; comedians Milton Berle in 1908 and Curly Joe DeRita in 1909; bandleader Will Bradley in 1912; painter Andrew Wyeth in 1917; pianist Van Cliburn in 1934 (age 77); comedian/actor Bill Cosby in 1937 (age 74); musician Christine McVie in 1943 (age 68); exercise and diet guru Richard Simmons in 1948 (age 63); movie producer Brian Grazer in 1951 (age 60); actors Denise Nicholas in 1944 (age 67), Cheryl Ladd in 1951 (age 60), Mel Harris in 1956 (age 55) and Rolonda Watts in 1959 (age 52); and Olympic gold medal figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi in 1971 (age 40).

On this date in history:

In 1862, the U.S. Congress authorized a new award, the Medal of Honor, highest military award for valor against an enemy.

In 1933, a U.S. industrial code was established to fix a minimum wage of 40 cents an hour.

In 1962, the Rolling Stones gave their first public performance, at the Marquee Club in London.

In 1984, Democratic presidential nominee Walter Mondale named Rep. Geraldine Ferraro, D-N.Y., as his running mate. She was the first woman to share a major U.S. political party's presidential ticket. They lost in November to incumbent Ronald Reagan.

In 1990, Boris Yeltsin quit the Soviet Communist Party, saying he wanted to concentrate on his duties as president of the Russian republic.

In 1991, members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee accused the former ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie, of misleading them about prewar meetings with Saddam Hussein.

In 1994, PLO chief Yasser Arafat and his wife took up permanent residence in the Gaza Strip.

In 1995, at least 800 people died in the Midwest and Northeast as the result of a heat wave that lasted five days.

In 1996, as part of her divorce settlement with British Prince Charles, Princess Diana kept the princess title and received about $25 million in a lump sum followed by an income of $600,000 a year.

In 2000, the United States and Vietnam reached a trade agreement that would allow unfettered commerce between the two nations for the first time since the end of the Vietnam War.

In 2004, Saudi Arabia said it rounded up hundreds of terror suspects but denied the existence of al-Qaida in the country.

In 2005, AIDS activists said South Africa may have the world's largest number of human immunodeficiency virus cases, with possibly more than 6 million of the nation's 40 million people infected.

In 2008, the federal government would assume the costly, exotic mortgages of 400,000 distressed homeowners under a housing crisis relief bill passed by the U.S. Senate. The measure would allow the U.S. purchase of adjustable-rate mortgages that were forcing many foreclosures.

In 2009, General Motors said part of its slimming-down process as it emerges from bankruptcy will be elimination of 400 of GM's 1,300 top executive jobs.

In 2010, Swiss authorities rejected a U.S. request to extradite Oscar-winning filmmaker Roman Polanski, 76, to face charges he drugged and raped a 13-year girl in 1977.

Also in 2010, Donald Berwick was sworn in as head of the U.S. agency that administers Medicare and Medicaid amid persistent political squabbling about his recess appointment avoiding confirmation hearings.

A thought for the day: Henry David Thoreau said, "Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth."

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