The almanac

By United Press International  |  Aug. 26, 2012 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Sunday, Aug. 26, the 239th day of 2012 with 127 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include British statesman Robert Walpole in 1676; French scientist Antoine Lavoisier, the founder of modern chemistry, in 1743; Lee De Forest, known as the father of radio, in 1873; poet/novelist Christopher Isherwood in 1904; bacteriologist Albert Sabin, discoverer of an oral vaccine for polio, in 1906; Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mother Teresa in 1910; basketball Hall of Fame member Tom Heinsohn in 1934 (age 78); Geraldine Ferraro, 1984 Democratic vice presidential candidate and first woman to seek so high a position on a major U.S. political party ticket, in 1935; voice actor and movie trailer specialist Don LaFontaine in 1940; crossword editor Will Shortz in 1952 (age 60); jazz musician Branford Marsalis in 1960 (age 52); and actors Macaulay Culkin and Chris Pine, both in 1980 (age 32).

On this date in history:

In 1920, women are given the right to vote in the United States when the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution goes into effect.

In 1964, Democrats nominated U.S. President Lyndon Johnson and Hubert Humphrey to face the Republicans in November.

In 1974, Charles Lindbergh died at the age of 72.

In 1978, Cardinal Albino Luciani was elected the 263rd pope and chose the name John Paul I. He died 33 days later.

In 1992, U.S. President George H.W. Bush announced a ban on Iraqi military flights over southern Iraq to protect the Shiite Muslims. He said any planes that violate the order would be shot down by U.S.-led coalition forces.

In 1996, a court in South Korea sentenced former President Chun Doo-hwan to death for the coup that put him in power. His successor, Roh Tae-woo, was sentenced to prison for taking bribes.

In 2003, the U.N. Security Council denounced as a "grave violation of human rights" the killings of Kuwaiti prisoners, believed to be in the hundreds, by Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's regime.

In 2004, a leader in the U.S. Army panel investigating prisoner abuse at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison said the team had discovered "serious misconduct and a loss of moral values."

Also in 2004, a mortar attack on a mosque in Koufa in central Iraq killed 40 people and injured another 70.

In 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck Florida's Atlantic coast, causing flooding that claimed 11 lives. The massive storm then moved into the Gulf of Mexico where it picked up strength and sent thousands of Gulf Coast residents fleeing its expected onslaught.

Also in 2005, a Gallup Poll indicated U.S. President George W. Bush's approval rating was 40 percent -- the lowest Gallup rating of his presidency.

In 2006, Iran rebuffed the U.N. edict to stop its nuclear project or face sanctions and went ahead with expansion steps.

In 2007, the unofficial estimate of people killed in flooding in North Korea was placed at 600.

Also in 2007, wildfires, all believed to be the act of arsonists, raged in Greece, fanned by gale force winds, killing at least 59 people and destroying thousands of acres of crops, pasture land and forests.

In 2008, median U.S. household income climbed 1.3 percent from 2006 to 2007, reaching $50,233 for a third consecutive increase, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. The report said the nation's official poverty rate in 2007 was 12.5 percent -- 37.3 million -- about the same as a year earlier.

Also in 2008, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed decrees recognizing the independence of two breakaway regions of Georgia. Medvedev said granting South Ossetia and Abkhazia independence was an act of necessity and urged other nations to make similar diplomatic moves.

In 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama nominated Ben Bernanke for a second term as chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve.

Also in 2009, in continuing post-election violence in Afghanistan, a car bombing in Kandahar left 43 people dead and more than 65 injured.

In 2010, Toyota recalled 1.13 million vehicles involving possible engine-stalling problems in the 2005-08 Corolla sedan and Matrix hatchback, its 15th recall of the year.

In 2011, more than 200 decomposing bodies of men, women and children were found abandoned at a Libyan hospital where heavy fighting had raged nearby. Clashes between rebel forces and supporters of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi prompted doctors and nurses to flee.

Also in 2011, Japanese Prime Minister Naota Kan resigned after a hectic 15 months that included an earthquake, a tsunami and a nuclear disaster. He was succeeded three days later by Yoshihiko Noda, the finance minister.

A thought for the day: Alan Patrick Herbert wrote, "The critical period in matrimony is breakfast-time."

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