The almanac

By United Press International  |  Feb. 5, 2012 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Sunday, Feb. 5, the 36th day of 2012 with 330 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 former British Prime Minister Robert Peel, founder of the London Police Force, in 1788; evangelist Dwight Moody in 1837; Scotsman John Dunlop, inventor of the pneumatic tire, in 1840; outlaw Belle Starr in 1848; aviation pioneer Gabriel Voisin in 1880; U.S. statesman Adlai E. Stevenson in 1900; actor John Carradine in 1906; novelist William Burroughs in 1914; comedian/actor Red Buttons in 1919; author Rev. Andrew Greeley in 1928 (age 84); baseball Hall of Fame member Henry Aaron and hockey commentator Don Cherry both in 1934 (age 78); financial writer Jane Bryant Quinn in 1939 (age 73); Heisman Trophy winner and football Hall of Fame member Roger Staubach in 1942 (age 70); film director Michael Mann in 1943 (age 69); musician Al Kooper in 1944 (age 68); race car driver Darrell Waltrip in 1947 (age 65); writer/comedian Christopher Guest and actor Barbara Hershey, both in 1948 (age 64); actors Tim Meadows in 1961 (age 51), Jennifer Jason Leigh in 1962 (age 50) and Laura Linney in 1964 (age 48); and singer Bobby Brown in 1969 (age 43).

On this date in history:

In 1631, British clergyman Roger Williams arrived in Salem, Mass., seeking religious freedom. He founded the colony of Rhode Island.

In 1919, screen legends Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and D.W. Griffith formed United Artists.

In 1971, Apollo 14 astronauts Alan Shepard and Edward Mitchell walked on the moon for four hours.

In 1981, U.S. President Ronald Reagan, in a nationwide address, said the United States was in "the worst economic mess since the Great Depression" and called for sweeping spending and tax cuts.

In 1986, world oil prices plunged toward $15 per barrel from $30 three months earlier after OPEC failed to curb production. Prices dropped to $9 by the summer of 1986.

In 1988, two U.S. grand juries in Florida announced indictments of Panama military strongman Manuel Antonio Noriega and 16 associates on drug smuggling and money laundering charges.

In 1989, Radio Moscow announced the last Soviet soldier had left Kabul, Afghanistan.

In 1990, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev proposed the Communist Party give up its monopoly on power in the Soviet Union. Two days later, the party's Central Committee agreed.

In 1994, a mortar shell was fired into a crowded market in Sarajevo, Bosnia, killing 69 people and injuring 200.

Also in 1994, white supremacist Byron De La Beckwith was convicted of the 1963 killing of Mississippi civil rights leader Medgar Evers.

In 1996, a judge ordered U.S. President Bill Clinton to testify in the Whitewater land dispute trial. He later did so via videotape.

In 2003, making a case for U.N.-endorsed military action in Iraq, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell accused the Saddam Hussein regime of deceiving U.N. weapons inspectors and having ties with the al-Qaida terrorist network.

In 2005, a Moroccan family of four was charged in Spain in the March 11 Madrid train bombings that killed 191 people.

In 2006, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran was halting voluntary cooperation in regards to Tehran's nuclear program.

Also in 2006, the violent Muslim protest against Danish-published caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed spread to Turkey, Indonesia, India, Thailand and New Zealand.

In 2007, U.S. astronaut Lisa Marie Nowak was arrested on several charges, including attempted kidnapping, after she drove from Houston to Orlando, Fla., to confront another officer whom she viewed as a romantic rival for a fellow astronaut.

In 2008, on "Super Tuesday," Barack Obama took a slim lead in delegates over Hillary Clinton in the Democratic contest while John McCain outscored all of his opponents combined in the delegate battle for the Republican nomination.

In 2010, the president of Toyota Motors Co. apologized for quality control problems that led to massive Toyota recalls. Sticking gas pedal problems led to a recall of 4.2 million vehicles, followed by similar problems with the 2010 hybrid Prius.

Also in 2010, in the second lethal assault of the week on Shiite pilgrims in Iraq, two car bombs killed more than two dozen people in Karbala and injured another 75 on final day of the Arbaeen festival. Earlier, a suicide bomber killed 31 in Baghdad.

In 2011, former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide said he was ending a seven-year exile and returning to Haiti. About a month earlier, former dictator and Aristide adversary Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier returned to Haiti after 25 years in exile.

A thought for the day: William D. Brown said, "Failure is an event, never a person."

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