The almanac

By United Press International  |  July 14, 2012 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Saturday, July 14, the 196th day of 2012 with 170 to follow.

The moon is waning. Morning stars are Venus, Jupiter, Neptune and Uranus. Evening stars are Mercury, Saturn and Mars.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include Austrian Art Nouveau painter Gustav Klimt in 1862; baseball Commissioner A. B. "Happy" Chandler in 1898; writers Irving Stone in 1903 and Isaac Bashevis Singer in 1904; cartoonist William Hanna in 1910; British comedian Terry-Thomas in 1911; folk singer Woody Guthrie in 1912; Gerald Ford, 38th president of the United States, in 1913; Swedish film director Ingmar Bergman in 1918; actors Dale Robertson in 1923 (age 89), Harry Dean Stanton in 1926 (age 86) and Polly Bergen in 1930 (age 82); TV news commentator John Chancellor in 1927; football star-turned-actor Roosevelt "Rosey" Grier in 1932 (age 80); political activist Jerry Rubin in 1938; evangelist Franklin Graham, actor and director Eric Laneuville, film producer Joel Silver and punk rocker Bob Casale, all in 1952 (age 60); and actors Jane Lynch in 1960 (age 52) and Matthew Fox in 1966 (age 46).

On this date in history:

In 1789, French peasants stormed the Bastille prison in Paris, beginning the French Revolution. The event is commemorated as "Bastille Day," a national holiday in France.

In 1793, Jean Paul Marat, one of the most outspoken leaders of the French Revolution, was stabbed to death in his bath by Charlotte Corday, a Royalist sympathizer.

In 1914, Robert Goddard was granted the first patent for a liquid-fueled rocket design.

In 1933, all political parties except the Nazis were officially suppressed in Germany.

In 1966, eight nurses were found killed in Chicago. Drifter Richard Speck later was convicted of the slayings.

In 1991, Syrian President Hafez al-Assad accepted U.S. President George H.W. Bush's compromise proposal for a Middle East peace conference.

In 2000, a jury in Miami-Dade Co., Fla., ordered the tobacco industry to pay $144.8 billion to Florida smokers. It was the largest damage award in U.S. history.

Also in 2000, a U.S. government panel concluded that federal officials weren't liable in the deaths of Branch Davidian cult members in a massive confrontation near Waco, Texas, in April 1993.

In 2003, a U.S. government source confirmed North Korea had begun reprocessing spent nuclear fuel rods, a step toward making more nuclear arms.

In 2004, a British government committee concluded that British intelligence prior to the Iraq war had been "seriously flawed."

In 2007, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that his country would suspend its participation in the Conventional Forces in Europe treaty, a Cold War agreement that limited deployment of heavy weaponry.

In 2008, U.S. President George W. Bush sought to lift a series of executive orders banning U.S. off-shore oil and gas drilling but the move was only symbolic since a similar congressional moratorium remained in effect.

Also in 2008, the International Criminal Court in The Hague accused the president of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in the civil war-shattered Darfur region.

In 2009, within months after repaying bailout money supplied by the U.S. government, New York banking giant Goldman Sachs reported a profit of $3.44 billion for the first quarter of the year. JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup also reported big profits.

Also in 2009, former Liberian President Charles Taylor, testifying in his own behalf at his war crimes trial in The Hague, denied charges that he was a killer and terrorist.

In 2010, nine states and one U.S. territory expressed support for Arizona's controversial illegal immigration crackdown law against a legal challenge by the Obama administration. The U.S. Justice Department said in its lawsuit that immigration was a federal matter.

In 2011, U.S. President Barack Obama said he was willing to put his presidency on the line to get a long-term agreement on budget cuts and the debt ceiling. Obama and Republican leaders haggled over the torrid, elusive two-prong issue for most of the year with only two weeks left before a debt deadline that observers said could force the United States into default on its obligations.

A thought for the day: Henri-Frederic Amiel said, "An error is the more dangerous the more truth it contains."

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