The almanac

By United Press International

Today is Saturday, Feb. 4, the 35th day of 2012 with 331 to follow.

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


Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include Polish-born American patriot Tadeusz Kosciuszko in 1746; French cubist painter Fernand Leger in 1881; aviator Charles Lindbergh in 1902; legendary golfer Byron Nelson in 1912; civil rights activist Rosa Lee Parks in 1913; actor Ida Lupino in 1918; feminist Betty Friedan in 1921; comedian David Brenner in 1936 (age 76); actor John Schuck in 1940 (age 71); former U.S. Vice President Dan Quayle in 1947 (age 65); rock musician Alice Cooper in 1948 (age 64); actor Lisa Eichhorn in 1952 (age 60); football Hall of Fame member Lawrence Taylor in 1959 (age 53); country singer Clint Black in 1962 (age 50), actor Gabrielle Anwar in 1970 (age 42) and boxer Oscar de la Hoya in 1973 (age 39).


On this date in history:

In 1789, George Washington of Virginia, the commander of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War, was elected the first president of the United States by all 69 presidential electors who cast votes. John Adams of Massachusetts was elected vice president.

In 1792, George Washington is unanimously elected to a second term as U.S. president in a vote of the Electoral College.

In 1861, at a convention in Montgomery, Ala., six states -- Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina -- elected Jefferson Davis president of the Confederacy.

Also in 1861, the 25-year period of conflict known as the Apache War began at Apache Pass, Ariz., with the arrest of Apache Chief Cochise for raiding a ranch. Cochise escaped his U.S. Army captors and declared war.

In 1938, Adolf Hitler seized control of the German army and put Nazi officers in key posts as part of a plan that led to World War II.

In 1974, urban guerrillas abducted Patricia Hearst, the 19-year-old daughter of publisher Randolph Hearst, from her apartment in Berkeley, Calif.

In 1976, an earthquake measuring 7.5 on the Richter scale killed nearly 23,000 people in Guatemala and Honduras.


In 1997, a jury in a civil trial in Santa Monica, Calif., found O.J. Simpson liable in the killings of his former wife and her friend, and was ordered to pay a total of $33.5 million to the families. Simpson had been acquitted in his murder trial.

In 2004, a Pakistani scientist considered the key figure in his country's nuclear weaponry development admitted he leaked that technology to other countries.

Also in 2004, the Massachusetts Supreme Court refused to allow "civil union" as a substitute for same-sex marriage.

In 2006, widespread Muslim protests of published caricatures depicting Muhammad in a negative light turned violent. Angry demonstrators smashed windows, set fires and burned flags and Syrian mobs burned Danish and Norwegian embassies.

Also in 2006, nearly 100 people were killed and more than 250 injured in a stampede at a Philippine stadium where thousands were on hand for a popular game show.

In 2008, U.S. President George W. Bush introduced a $3.1 trillion budget for fiscal 2009, including proposed increases in military spending but cutbacks in most domestic programs.

In 2009, the U.S. unemployment rate rose to a 26-year high of 8.1 percent, auto sales sank and housing starts were at their lowest annual level in at least half a century.


In 2010, authorities in earthquake devastated Haiti charged 10 American missionaries with child abduction and conspiracy after they allegedly tried to take 33 children across the border to a Dominican Republic orphanage without official permission.

In 2011, the seasonally adjusted national unemployment rate dropped to 9 percent in January, compared with 9.4 in December. The U.S. Labor Department, however, said non-farm payrolls expanded only 36,000 for the month.

A thought for the day: Ralph Waldo Emerson advised, "Go often to the house of a friend, for weeds choke the unused path."

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