JUNE 20, 2017
June 20th, 2017

Question: The Duke of Wellington had an older brother, who lived as long as he did. So if he was elder, why didn’t he become Duke of Wellington?

Yesterdays Question answered below: Which was the older brother- Walt or Roy Disney..?
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History for 6/20/2017
Birthdays: Wolf Tone, Jacques Offenbach, Lillian Hellman, Errol Flynn, Audie Murphy,
Andre Watts, Cyndee Lauper, Bob Vila, Chet Atkins, Stephen Frears, Brian Wilson, Robert Rodriquez, John Goodman, Martin Landau, John Mahoney, Nicole Kidman is 49

1218- Simon De Monfort, Leader of the Crusade against the Albigensian heretics of southern France, was squished by a catapult stone whilst besieging Toulouse. Legend says the lucky catapult shot that nailed Simon was fired by the women & children of Toulouse who knew they could expect no mercy from him.

1389 -Battle of Kosovo Polje, where a coalition of Serbs, Croats, Bulgars and
Albanians under Prince Lazar I of Serbia were annihilated by a Turkish army under young Sultan Bajazet called Ilderim- Lightning. The Sultan was presented with King Lazar’s head on a spear. The Ottoman Turkish Empire would rule in the Balkans for 500 years.

1397- The Union of Kalmar unites Sweden, Norway and Denmark under one crown.

1605-The False Dmitri invades Russia. A defrocked Lithuanian priest named Grishka declared himself the dead infant son of Czar Ivan the Terrible grown up and convinced a powerful Polish noble family, The Mniszechs, to back him. Historians wrongly call this a Polish-Russian War but actually it was a privately run freelance invasion.
Dmitri succeeded in toppling Czar Boris Gudunov and occupying Moscow. When the Polish Army went home the Russians killed him, burned his body, mixed the ashes with gunpowder, stuffed it in a cannon and fired it back in the direction of Poland.

1747- Persian King Nadir Shah had seized the throne and led armies across Central Asia in a march of conquest not seen since the days of Tamerlane. He conquered Iraq, Uzbekizatan, Afghanistan, Northern India and Yerevan. He forced the Indian Moguls to give him the fabulous Peacock Throne. But as he grew older he got increasingly paranoid, blinding his eldest son and executing hundreds. Finally, this day, his own bodyguards stabbed him, and everyone breathed a sigh of relief.

1756- THE BLACK HOLE OF CALCUTTA- Bengal Rajah Siraj ud Daula stuffed 146 captured British officers in a tiny cell. Most died of asphyxiation by morning. 23 survived.

1782- The main action of the Revolution now over, and the peace treaties being signed, Angry Continental soldiers, who had not been paid for months, surrounded the US Congress at Independence Hall, Philadelphia. They pounded their muskets on the locked doors and threatened violence if they weren’t paid. Congressmen fled out the back door to Trenton to reconvene. 1782- Shortly before they ran away, Congress approved the final design of the Great Seal of the United States, choosing the Bald Eagle over the Wild Turkey as the symbol of America.

1789- THE TENNIS COURT OATH- French King Louis XVI got annoyed with his parliament or Estates General for constantly asking for permanent power and the right to rule by laws. On this day he tells them to disband. Of the Estates three divisions the First Estate- Nobility and the Second Estate – Clergy quietly obey and go home. But the Third Estate -the common folk- refused and when they were turned out of their meeting hall by the guards they reconvened in the Royal tennis court. There the members pledged not to disband until Liberty was established. "Go tell your master that here the People rule!"- Said Mirabeau to the royal herald.

1790- THE US CAPITOL CONCEIVED- In the then American capitol, New York City, Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, went over to have dinner with Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and Senator James Madison. There were no real American political parties yet, but Jefferson had been leading the opposition to Hamilton’s plan for the US Government to assume all the debt incurred by the individual states in the Revolution. This act would strengthen the central government at the expense of the states. Everyone knew Jefferson worked through Madison but he presented this dinner as his arbitrating a peace between Madison and Hamilton!

No one recorded what was said at the meal or if they sang any Broadway songs, but it is assumed Hamilton proposed a deal in exchange for the debt assumption- to move the American capitol south. This night they agreed to move the planned US capitol to a new site on land suggested by President Washington near his Mount Vernon estate. Midway between North and South. It would become Washington, DC. It was also possibly the last time Jefferson, Hamilton and Madison ever agreed on anything ever again.

1815- NATHAN ROTHSCHILD'S BIG SCORE. -When The Battle of Waterloo happened in Belgium no one in England knew who had won for 72 anxious hours. The House of Rothschild Bank had a Dutch agent at the battlefield who galloped to Ostend then across the Channel to Nathan before the official news reached the London. This morning, Nathan Rothschild walked into the London Stock Exchange and took his usual stance by his favorite pillar.

Everyone was sure Rothschild knew something. He said nothing himself but his agents started to sell off Government bonds. Day traders took this as a sign that the French were victorious, so the price of Government securities plummeted in panic sales. When the prices had fallen low enough Rothschild gave the signal to start buying. By the time the real news that Wellington had beaten Napoleon arrived, Nathan Rothschild had made a fortune. He later became the first of the Jewish faith to enter the House of Lords.

1819- The first steam powered ship successfully crossed the Atlantic. The SS Savannah made it to Liverpool after a trip of 27 days.

1837-QUEEN VICTORIA-Upon the death of her uncle King William IV, little 19 year old Princess Victoria becomes Queen of the British Empire. She will rule 64 years, until 1901 and give her name to the era, Victorian.

She came to the throne when veterans of the American Revolution and Waterloo were still alive, and she lived long enough to use electric lights, telephones and watch a movie. Before Victoria, the British Royals were never considered examples of morality. It was said her grandfather George III was insane, her Uncle George IV a bigamist, her other uncle, William IV, a glutton and her mother the Duchess of Kent was living openly with an Irish adventurer named James Conroy. If you wanted to meet the great men of the nation you had to look in the gambling houses or brothels. Victoria changed all that.

She and her husband Prince Albert made the pursuit of Morality and Family the highest standard of polite society. And Christmas trees, and tuxedos.

1862- The U.S. Congress passed the Pacific Railroad Act, allowing funds for the transcontinental railroad.

1863-Several Virginia counties whose people opposed the Confederacy and slavery re-enter the Union as the new state of West Virginia.

1900- THE BOXER REBELLION- In Beijing, the Boxer Rebellion trapped the foreign diplomatic corps in their compound in the Forbidden City. The Chinese mobs were led by martial arts societies like the I Ho Chu Huan- The Righteous and Harmonius Fists. They wanted to drive out the hated foreigners who were ruining China the way they had carved up Africa and India.
The German ambassador Baron Von Kettler, who liked to shoot at Chinese children from his balcony for fun, was murdered in the street, and the Japanese ambassador was pulled out of his sedan chair and beheaded. Women in western clothing were doused with gasoline and set ablaze. The Chinese Manchu Dowager Empress Cixi permitted the Chinese Army to support the Boxers.

At first the besieged delegations didn't get along well, the British and Japanese didn't trust the Russians, the Germans were cut off from their big new brewery in Tsing-Tao. And nobody liked the Americans with their constant preaching that they weren't out to annex new colonies, while their gunboats and Marines prowled the Yangtze. But under the leader ship of British attache, Sir Archibald MacDonald, the diplomats soon learned to work together. They held out until an international force rescued them- the "55 days in Peking".

1910- Longtime President of Mexico, Porfirio Diaz, unsuccessfully tried to stop the Revolution breaking out by declaring martial law and arresting hundreds.

1927- THE RED TENT- Italian polar explorer, General Nobile, had reached the North Pole in his zeppelin, the Norge, the year before. He was the hero of Mussolini’s Italy and the world. But in his second expedition, his zeppelin, the Italia, crashed and the men were stranded on the arctic ice. They dyed their shelter tent red to be seen.

An international rescue effort was launched to try to save them and the great Norwegian polar explorer, Roald Amundsen, died in the attempt. On this day, a Swedish plane reached the Red Tent. There was not room on the plane for everyone so Nobile went aboard to safety before the rest. He said he did so to better organize the saving of his men. But because he didn’t stay behind until all were saved Nobile was branded a coward. Remember this was just a few weeks after Lindbergh, so ‘hero’ standards were pretty high. Mussolini and the rest of the world would have nothing more to do with him. General Nobile spent the rest of his long life regretting he ever left the Red Tent.

1936- Mickey short Moving Day premiered.

1940- Thirty thousand people gather at the Hollywood Bowl for an America First rally. There they listened to isolationist celebrities like Lillian Gish and Charles Lindbergh protest President Franklin Roosevelt’s plans to aid Britain.” It is obvious that Britain will lose the war…. It is not freedom when one fifth the country can drag four fifths into a war it does not want!” Students like future President Gerald Ford were in the audience.

1940- Artist Alberto Vargas signs a contract with Esquire Magazine to paint the ‘Vargas Girls’ pin ups that made the magazine famous. He replaced artist George Petty who was demanding $1,500 a week. Vargas was paid $75 a week. Today an original Vargas goes for $350,000.

1941- Two days before Hitler’s invasion of Russia, Richard Zorga, a Russian spy in the German Embassy in Tokyo, sent home to Moscow microfilm with complete information on the attack. He even revealed it’s codename- Operation Barbarossa. A Russian agent in Hungary, code-named “Lucy”, and the Chinese agents of Mao Tse Tung confirmed the information. Yet despite all these warnings Soviet leader Josef Stalin refused to believe it. On June 22, the Nazis attacked and Stalin was taken completely by surprise.

1941-Walt Disney's "the Reluctant Dragon" premiered, with cartoonist's pickets around the Pantages Theater in Hollywood. Police actually have to close part of Hollywood Blvd. out of concern for what the rampaging animators might do. Future UPA producer Steve Bosustow drove up in a limo and picketed in tuxedo and top hat. His chauffeur was Maurice Noble, the designer of the RoadRunner cartoons. Ironically the movie was part documentary about how wonderful life was working at the Disney studio.

1943- Martial law was declared in Detroit when race riots killed 28. New Sherman tanks just completed in the auto plants of Dearborn, were driven into town to help restore order.

1947- Benjamin Bugsy Siegel, the gangster creator of modern Las Vegas, was murdered while reading his evening paper in his Beverly Hills home. He had bought the mansion from opera singer George London for his girlfriend actress Virginia Hill. The order to whack Bugsy was probably given by his old friend Mayer Lansky. The Mob was fed up with Bugsy’s cost overruns to build Las Vegas. The second owner of his Flamingo casino, Gus Greenbaum, had his throat cut with a butcher knife. Despite all, the Flamingo and the Las Vegas Strip went on to become a great success.

1948- The Ed Sullivan Show "Toast of the Town" later to be “the Ed Sullivan Show” premiered. Sullivan's show was the showcase that brought new acts like Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Signor Winces and the Rolling Stones into the average American living room. Prior to this, Mr. Sullivan was a columnist and radio show personality who co-authored "Red Channels", a book accusing dozens of his compatriots as Communists..

1972- In the first reaction to the news of the Watergate Break in, Nixon Presidential spokesman Ron Zeigler dismissed it: “It is not for the White House to comment on the investigation of a third-rate burglary”. The Third-Rate Burglary drove Richard Nixon from office in 1974.

1972- THE SMOKING GUN- All through the Watergate scandal the big question was how involved was President Richard Nixon? A conversation in the Oval office was taped this day between Nixon and his aide H.R. Haldeman. Whatever was said on this tape it took two years of lawsuits and a Supreme Court ruling to get Nixon to surrender it. This tape for June 20th had 18 missing minutes.
Experts say five separate manual erasures caused the gap. After a feeble attempt to blame it on the fumble fingers of Nixon’s secretary, Rosemary Woods, it’s generally believed, although never admitted, that Nixon himself probably erased the incriminating parts of the tape. It was called the “smoking gun”. Three days after the tape was made public in 1974, President Nixon resigned. If Nixon had simply popped this tape into the White House incinerator, he may have completed his presidency.

1975- Steven Spielberg’s movie Jaws opened, bringing back the monster-hit event movie.

1977- The Trans-Alaskan Pipeline began flowing.
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Yesterdays’ Question: Which was the older brother- Walt or Roy Disney..?

Answer: Roy.


June 19, 2017
June 19th, 2017

Question: Which was the older brother- Walt or Roy Disney..?

Yesterdays Quiz answered below: What does it mean when someone is named Posthumous at birth? Were they born dead? Flavius Posthumous Valens, or Ludovico Posthumous.
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History for 6/19/2017
Birthdays: Euclid, Blaise Pascal, King James I Stuart, Wallis Simpson Duchess of Windsor, Moe Howard, Kathleen Turner, Lou Gehrig, Guy Lombardo, Mildred Natwick, Charles Coburn, Pat Butram, Louis Jourdan, Pauline Kael, Salman Rushdie, Dame Mae Whitty, Lucie Sloane, Ang Sung Soo Chi, Paula Abdul is 55, Zoe Saldana is 39, Gena Rowlands is 87

240 BC- Greek mathematician, Erastosthenes, measuring the cast shadows made by sticks placed in the ground, first calculated the total circumference of the Earth. He was only off by a few miles.

1312- Piers Gaveston- royal courtier and openly gay paramour of English king Edward II, was executed by angry barons. The King then went on to another boy-toy named Hugh Despenser. The memory of Piers Gaveston is preserved as the name of a men’s fraternity at Oxford University.

1389- At Kosovo, the huge Turkish army of Sultan Murad Ist, faced the Balkan warriors of Serb Prince Lazar Ist. A Serb knight named Milosh Kobilic got an interview in the Sultan’s tent by claiming to be a deserter with vital information. Once there, he sprang upon Sultan Murad and stabbed him. Milosh was hacked to pieces by the Sultans’ guards. This should have been decisive, but unfortunately for the Serbs, Murad’s son, Bajazet, turned out to be an even better general than his dad. The next day the Turkish army destroyed the Serb Army.

1588- The Spanish Armada sailed from Cadiz and Lisbon to invade England.

1619- THE OLD GLOBE THEATER FIRE. During a performance of William Shakespeare’s Henry VIII, a prop cannon fired a salute that set afire the straw thatch on the roof. Soon the blaze consumed the old theater. Shakespeare, as a partner in the company that owned the Globe, paid to rebuild it. He soon retired home to Stratford. Fifty years later, during Cromwell’s Puritan rule, the Globe was pulled down because the Puritans frowned on theatrical entertainment as ungodly.

1754- Six American colonies and three Iroquois Indian tribes sent delegates to a meeting in Albany, New York to discuss how to work together more closely. Ben Franklin and Thomas Hutchinson submit plans to form a congress of all the Anglo colonies except Georgia and Nova Scotia (remember Canada was still New France at this time), with a President-General appointed by the King. But London rejected the plan.

1803- Captain Meriwether Lewis sent a letter inviting Captain William Clark to come join him and explore the route from the Mississippi to the Pacific Coast. Lewis had a backup in mind in case Clark said no, a Lt. Moses Hook. But Clark said yes, so today we remember Lewis & Clark, not Lewis & Hook.

1815- The day after the Battle of Waterloo the Congress of Vienna published their final declarations. The Congress was a grand summit- England, Russia, Prussia, Austria, Sweden, Spain, Naples, Portugal, Holland, Turkey and Royalist France spent the better part of a year redistributing the lands disturbed by Napoleon’s conquests. They mostly reaffirmed hereditary rights of the old monarchs, but published a joint ban on the African slave trade, and chose not to dispute America’s purchase of Louisiana. This conference set the stage for European politics for the rest of the XIX century.

1846-THE EARLIEST RECORDED BASEBALL GAME- The famous legend is that Abner Doubleday invented the game but that's been mostly disproved. The sport evolved out of an Old English game called Rounders. No one is sure of the exact date the game was invented, but, on this day, a New York newspaper ran a notice of a "base-ball" game played by the New York Knickerbocker Baseball Club and the New York Nines Cricket Club at the Elysian Fields in Hoboken, New Jersey. The cricketeers won 23-1. This was the first game played under Cartwright’s Rules.
Alexander Cartwright created a finite system of three outs and nine innings.
Baseball spread nationwide because of the Civil War. When men of all the states would spend time in army camps, they learned to play “The Boston-New York Game”. After the conflict, they went to their homes in the various states and took the game with them.

1863- In one of the most famous ship-to-ship duels of the American Civil War, the USS Kearsarge fought and sunk the Confederate CSS Alabama in the harbor of Cherbourg, France. Young Impressionist painter Claude Monet was watching from the shore and later made a painting of the event.
Confederate raiders hunted US shipping around the sea-lanes of the world, which is why today you can find Confederate grave markers in Capetown, South Africa and Alaska.

1865- Happy Juneteenth- Abe Lincoln’s emissaries finally reached Texas with news of the Emancipation of the slaves. Black Texans celebrate this day thereafter as Juneteenth-Independence Day, although white Texans refused to acknowledge the holiday until 1979.

1867-The Emperor of Mexico, Maximillian Hapsburg, shot by firing squad. Maximillian distributed bribes to the riflemen asking them not to aim for his head, but one hit him there anyway. Mexican President Benito Juarez felt this drastic gesture had to be taken to discourage any future European adventurers. And Maximillian routinely ordered the execution of any Juaristas who fell into his hands.

1867- The first Belmont Stakes horse race. The winner was Ruthless.

1889- Beginning of the Sherlock Holmes adventure, the Man with the Twisted Lip.

1893 - Lizzie Bordon acquitted of the axe murders of her abusive parents. The murderers were never found. She lived alone peaceably and when she died she left all her money to the ASPCA.

1910 - Father's Day celebrated for 1st time. It was organized by the Spokane, Washington members of the local YMCA and Spokane Ministerial Assoc.

1917- Still in the depths of World War I, King George V ordered members of the British royal family to dispense with German titles & surnames. Before that the official name of Queen Victoria’s family was the House of Saxe-Coburg Gotha. It now became the House of Windsor. Prince Louis Von Battenberg became Lord Louis Mountbatten.

1921- Distributer Amadee van Beuren announced production of a new series of "Aesop’s Fables" cartoons to be done by former Bray director Paul Terry. Terrytoons studio is born.

1923 - "Moon Mullins," a Comic Strip, debuts.

1934-The Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, created.

1941 - Cheerios Cereal invented. Originally called Cheeri-Oats, it was changed to Cheerios in 1945.

1944-" The Marianas Turkey Shoot"- the Japanese tried to defeat a landing on the strategic island of Saipan by sending a task force of 9 carriers and 400 aircraft, many new generation Zeroes nicknamed Judys. But most of Japan’s veteran combat pilots were gone and the planes were manned by inexperienced novices rushed through training. In this last big carrier to carrier battle US forces shot down 346 Japanese planes and sank three carriers to a loss of only 30 American aircraft.

1953- THE ROSENBERGS GO TO THE CHAIR- Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, "The Atomic Spies", were electrocuted at Sing Sing for spying for the Soviet Union. When the Russians detonated their first nuclear weapon no one in America thought they could do it without spies giving them our secrets.
Only hours before the execution, a young lawyer had found a clause in the law statutes that execution of spies could not take place except in time of war, but the judge who could have stopped it refused because he was Jewish and he feared an even greater anti-Semitic backlash if he saved them. The executions were moved up a day so they would not be killed on a Friday, the Jewish Sabbath.

We now know, in 1945, Manhattan project physicists Klaus Fuchs and Ted Hall had given Stalin the plans to the Nagasaki bomb. According to KGB archives from 1989, Julius Rosenberg was on their payroll, but just what and how much he did is controversial. Dr. Fuchs gave away much more vital information yet he only got a moderate prison term. Ted Hall was never discovered until he wrote a book in 1997.

Housewife Ethel Rosenberg probably didn’t do anything and died horribly, screaming when the current was turned on. It took three jolts for two full minutes to kill her. To conservatives the Rosenbergs were dangerous traitors; to progressives they were innocent martyrs of the red hysteria of the times and of anti-Semitism, even though their prosecutor Roy Cohn was also Jewish. Roy Cohn became one of the first celebrities to die of AIDS, and was a mentor to Donald Trump.

1952 - "I've Got A Secret" debuts on CBS-TV with Garry Moore as host.

1956- The comedy team of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis announce their breakup.

1960- Freedomland amusement park opened in New York City.

1963- The Ray Harryhausen fantasy film Jason and the Argonauts premiered.

1963- The Canadian Football Hall of Fame formed.

1964- THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT. African Americans finally get the basic rights promised them by Abe Lincoln 100 years earlier. In the South, blacks were routinely disqualified from voting and forced to take humiliating tests, like guessing how many bubbles were on a bar of wet soap. Several Civil Rights bills had been proposed since but they were all blocked by the Southern Caucus in Congress.

Those who remember Lyndon Johnson only as the warmonger of Vietnam should also recall that his arm twisting was the main reason this act made it through Congress. Chief Justice William Reinquist, Senator Strom Thurmond, Rev Billy Graham and Claire Booth Luce of Time Magazine urged LBJ not to sign it. The Civil Rights Act started the shift of Southern white conservatives from the Democratic Party to the Republicans.

1964- While flying home to Massachusetts, Senator Ted Kennedy was almost killed in a small plane crash. He broke several verterbrae but survived. Years later whenever his nephew John Kennedy Jr would offer to take Ted on his small plane, Ted always refused.

1964- The Condor Club of San Francisco becomes the first to offer topless dancers. Carol Doda became the first topless waitress, and a mainstay of San Francisco’s nightclub scene. She augmented her already ample bosom to 44 inches with silicon implants. She joked: "I dunno, I guess I just expanded in the heat!"

1973 The Rocky Horror Picture Show stage show opened in London. The film version became a midnight cult classic. Writer Richard O’Brien himself plays the bald doorman Riff-Raff. Let’s do the Time Warp Again.

1975- Mobster Sam "Momo" Giancana was murdered while frying sausages. He was scheduled to testify the next day about what he knew of Pres. John F. Kennedy’s assassination to the Frank Church Committee’s Senatorial Inquiry on Assassinations. The following year Jimmy Roselli, a Giancana hit man who always claimed he was the second gunman in Dallas, was found dismembered in an oil drum floating in Florida’s Biscayne Bay.

1978 – Garfield the Cat, created by Jim Davis, 1st appears as a comic strip

1987 - Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream & Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia announce a new Ice Cream flavor, Cherry Garcia.

1987 –David Geffen Records signed their 1st artist -Donna Summer.

1998- Disney’s Mulan premiered.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: What does it mean when someone is named Posthumous at birth? Were they born dead? Flavius Posthumous Valens, or Ludovico Posthumous.

Answer: It means between the time you were conceived and your birth, one of your parents had died.


June 18, 2017
June 18th, 2017

Quiz: What does it mean when someone is named Posthumous at birth? Were they born dead? Flavius Posthumous Valens, or Ludovico Posthumous.

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Indiana Jones was looking for the Ark of the Covenant. What was supposed to be in it?
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History for 6/18/2017
Birthdays: M C Escher, Charles Gounod, James Montgomery Flagg, Kay Kayser, William Lassell 1799- English astronomer who discovered Neptune's moon Triton, Richard Boone, Jeanette MacDonald, Key Luke, Isabella Rosselini, E.G. Marshall, Roger Ebert, Eduard Daladier, Carol Kane, Sammy Kahn, The Quay Brothers, Paul McCartney is 76

1178- According to the chronicler Gervase of Canterbury, on this evening five monks sitting near the town witnessed a "flaming torch" spring up from the upper horn of the crescent moon. In 1976 it has been theorized that this was a lunar meteor impact that created the Giordano Bruno Crater. Others think it was an exploding comet in our atmosphere aligning with the moon.

1574- Henry III de Valois was the younger son of the King of France. Being third in line for the succession, he accepted the throne of Poland as better than nothing. In Krakow after his coronation and betrothal to a Polish Princess he learned his two older brothers had died and he was now king of France! Without pausing to consider the strategic advantages of a dual monarchy on either side of Germany, the spoiled young man desired to go home immediately. He abandoned the Polish throne and galloped for the border with his court and fiancé’ in hot pursuit.

1583 - Richard Martin of London takes out the first life insurance policy on his friend William Gibbons. The premium was 383 pounds.

1682 – Quaker leader William Penn founded Philadelphia.

1757-Battle of Koln- A rare time when Frederick the Great was defeated in battle by the Austrian army under Archduke Daun. Frederick in frustration shouted at his fleeing cavalry- " What? Do you want to live forever?"

1778- The British army evacuated the American Capitol of Philadelphia. The reason General Clinton pulled back his redcoats was because of his learning of the French entry into the war. London didn’t want him to be stranded in the American interior should the French fleet attack the coast. Clinton offered protection to any Philadelphia loyalists who were afraid of Yankee revenge. Six thousand American loyalists abandoned the city with the troops, many pulling their furniture laden wagons by hand because of the scarcity of horses and oxen.
By 3:00PM the British columns were gone. Then the first elements of the U.S. Army marched into the silent city down Second St. to William Penn’s mansion. They were led by the newly appointed military governor- General Benedict Arnold.

1815- WATERLOO- One of the battles that changed history. 145,000 men in brightly colored uniforms with 400 cannons blew each other to pieces for 9 hours at a road intersection about three miles square. Many factors affected Wellington's defeat of Napoleon: The previous nights rains delayed the battle until 11:00 A.M. Napoleon had a bout of stomach cramps (he had bleeding ulcers, cystitis, piles and hypertension) and while he rested, his subordinates wasted troops in fruitless assaults. The Prussian army everyone thought was running to Berlin boiled into the French right just when it seemed that the French were winning. Later in private, Wellington admitted "It had been a very close run thing." Suffice to say the world would have been a much different place. Napoleon said: "If I lose England will dominate the world for the next 100 years." Individual stories abound.
-Towards the end of the battle the Earl of Uxbridge was struck by a cannonball while seated next to Wellington. The Earl noticed: "My God Sir, I do believe I’ve lost my leg." Wellington looked down, then replied: "My God Sir, I do believe you’re right." Uxbridge had eloped with Wellington's younger sister so he didn't like him that much anyway.
-My favorite anecdote is about General Cambronne, leader of the French elite' Old Guard. He formed up an infantry square to take a last stand to cover the French retreat. His small band is surrounded by the victorious Anglo-Dutch German army and called upon to surrender. Cambronne had time for a one word reply before all the guns go off-" MERDE!" This is a favorite French epithete meaning "sh*t!" The writer Chateaubriand later said that he cried"The Guard dies but never Surrenders!" But we all know what he really said. To this day in France if you’re too polite to use an expletive you can say: A' la mode de Cambronne!"
-Wellington didn't have any dinner until 11 p.m. He ate alone because his personal staff were all dead or wounded.
- In later years writer Victor Hugo lived at Waterloo for awhile and was influential in making the old battlefield field a shrine. When I visited I saw across from Hugo's statue the "Victor Hugo's Private Men's Club" with "New Hostesses!"

1817- With the Iron Duke (Wellington), himself in attendance London opened a new bridge across the Thames, named the Waterloo Bridge. Later the guests sat down at the traditional Waterloo banquet and were served a new dish- you guessed it.....Beef Wellington. No crème napoleons for desert, through.

1879 - W H Richardson, an African American inventor, patents the baby buggy or perambulator.

1892 - Macadamia nuts first planted in Hawaii.

1898 - 1st amusement pier opens in Atlantic City, NJ

1900- The Dowager Empress of China Xiao Chin Xi (Cixi) calls for the killing of all foreigners during the Boxer Rebellion. She commits the Chinese Imperial Army to the expulsion of all the European colonialist powers. Empress Xiao Chin Xi was the first person westerners called the Dragon Lady, later used by Milt Caniff in his comic strip Terry & the Pirates.

1903 - 1st transcontinental auto trip begins in SF; arrives NY 3-mo later

1913- composer Cole Porter graduated from Yale.

1916- German Max Immelman, the first true fighter ace, died when the synchronizing mechanism that enabled his machine gun to fire through his propeller blades failed and he shot his own propeller off. Ach, Himmel! To take your plane in a large loop around someone else is still called an Immelman Turn.

1923- The first Checker Cab was manufactured in Chicago. The big, boxy, durable Checkers were the most famous American city taxicabs until dying out in the 1980s.

1927- The last radio transmission of the flying boat carrying famous arctic explorer Roald Ammundsen to the arctic circle. Norwegian Ammundsen had conquered the South Pole and flew over the North Pole. He was now called out of retirement to lead an international effort to save Italian Polar explorer General Nobile, who’s zeppelin had crashed on the arctic ice. Ironically Ammundsen disliked Nobile personally. Nobile and his men were rescued but Ammundsen and his plane were never found.

1931- The Metropolitan Museum of NY had in its collection a little blue statue of a Hippo from the tomb of the Egyptian Steward Senbi from the Twelfth Dynasty. People nicknamed it Willie and this day an article about it with a color picture appeared in Punch Magazine. Soon museum craftsmen made little replicas of Willie that they gave as gifts to donors and eventually started selling to the public. The massive retail business in museum reproductions and merchandise we have today, all began with little Willie the Hippo.

1940- As the shattered French armies fall back from the Nazis onslaught, Marshal Petain telephoned the German High Command and requested an armistice. Meanwhile across the Channel an obscure French colonel made a dramatic radio broadcast from London calling for Free French Resistance. Charles DeGaulle's political career began.

1945- During the battle raging for Okinawa the US Army commander General Simon Bolivar Buckner went up to the front to see better, and was killed by a Japanese tank shell. At the same time the Japanese commander committed hari-kari. Okinawa was one of those rare battles like Quebec in 1759 where both commanding generals died. General Buckner’s father was a Confederate General in the Civil War who had fought Gen Douglas MacArthur's father.

1953- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. married Coretta Scott.

1959 - 1st TV telecast transmitted from England to US.

1959- Earl Long the Governor of Louisiana was ordered confined to a State Mental Hospital for his erratic behavior. Earl’s response was to arrange for the director of the hospital to be fired and replaced with another who declared him perfectly sane.

1967- At the Monterey Pop Rock festival Jimi Hendrix electrified the audience then finished his set by burning and smashing his guitar on stage. Until then musicians didn’t behave in such a way towards their instruments. Ravi Shankar was particularly shocked.

1980 –"We are on a mission from God." John Landis movie " The Blues Brothers" with Dan Ackroyd & John Belushi premiered.

1983- Sally Ride becomes the first U.S. woman in Space. Russian Valentina Tereshkova had gone up in 1963.

2002- President George W. Bush said:” When we talk about war, we are really talking about peace.”

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Yesterday’s Question: Indiana Jones was looking for the Ark of the Covenant. What was supposed to be in it?

Answer: Moses’ tablets with the Ten Commandments, written by the finger of God. The Staff of Aaron, and a jar of Manna, as in manna from Heaven.

The Ark was taken by the Emperor Titus to Rome when he destroyed Jerusalem in 70AD. Some say the Ark was last seen being taken by the barbarian chief Alaric when he sacked Rome in 410AD. When Alaric died, he was buried under the River Po and his tomb has never been discovered. Other say the Ark of the Covenant was brought to France by the Knights Templar. Others say it is kept by the Christian Church in Ethiopia .No one knows for sure.


June 17, 2017
June 17th, 2017

Question: Indiana Jones was looking for the Ark of the Covenant. What was supposed to be in it?

Yesterday’s question answered below: What is the Uncanny Valley?
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History for 6/17/2017
Birthdays: King Edward I "Longshanks", John Wesley the founder of the Methodists, , Wally Wood, Ralph Bellamy, Dean Martin, Barry Manilow, Joe Piscopo is 67, Newt Gingrich, Martin Bormann, Jason Patric, Ken Loach, Greg Kinnear is 54, Venus Williams, Thomas Haden Church is 57, Will Forte is 47

431BC- Battle of Mt. Algidus. Roman general Aulus Postumus Tubertus defeated two Etruscan tribes, the Aeguians and the Volscians.

1745- During one of the periodic wars between England and France, a force of New England colonials went up to Canada and captured the fortress of Louisburg, the largest French bastion on the Atlantic coast. It cost 100 colonists’ lives and 900 more during the occupation. But, amazingly, England gave the fortress back to France in exchange for a fortress in Madras, India. This was another thing that pissed off Americans about being a colony.

1775- THE BATTLE OF BUNKER HILL. British troops surrounded in Boston, crossed the harbor to attack an entrenched rebel position on Breeds Hill (the names got confused.). It took the Redcoats three grand assaults until they took the hill, but the rebel farmers, instead of fleeing like rabbits, shot them to pieces. Captain Israel Putnam advised his men,” Don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes, then aim low.” The minutemen only retreated when their ammunition ran out.

The battle exacted such a huge cost in soldiers’ lives that the British public was shocked (1,000 casualties out of 2,040 men). Based on America's lukewarm participation in the French & Indian War a decade past, had not the great General Wolf of Quebec labeled the American the "Worst Soldier in the Universe"? and General Gage once told his friend, George Washington," New Englanders are big boasters and worst soldiers. I never saw any as infamously bad." The English generals consoled themselves with the thought that it couldn't have been the Yankees that fought so well, but all the Irish and Scottish immigrants that had arrived recently.

Lexington and Concord could be dismissed as an extended civilian disturbance, but Bunker Hill convinced London that it now had a full-scale war to fight 3,000 ocean miles away.

1789- French King Louis XVI had convened an Estates General to solve the bankrupt economy. The body consisted of three branches- the First Estate-Nobility, 2nd – Clergy and Third Estate the common people- about 99% of the country. This day after much debate the Third Estate voted to declare itself the real representative will of the French people and as such they should legislate for them, King or no.

They renamed themselves the National Assembly. Two days later most of the poor clergy and some nobles like Lafayette voted to join them and when the King ordered them to disband on June 20th they moved to the tennis court. This was the political beginning of the French Revolution.

1815- Heavy Spring rains cancel any actions as the British and French armies converge on a little village outside Brussels called Waterloo. Thunder and lightning drowned out the sound of cannon. The English were optimistic because by coincidence every major victory of the Duke of Wellington was preceded by a strong thunderstorm.
The Prussian (German) army, beaten and driven off yesterday, regroups and turns around to join the English. Its commander was eccentric, 72-year-old Marshal Blucher. In the previous day's battle Blucher had a horse collapse on top of him and was trampled by French cavalry. But after bathing his limbs in brandy and swallowing a large schnapps he was back at the head of his troops bellowing: “Vowarts Mein Kinder! Vowarts Mein Leiber!”

1823- Charles MacKintosh patents the waterproof rubberized raincoat. In England, a raincoat is still called a MacKintosh.

1863 - Travelers Insurance Co of Hartford chartered (1st accident insurer)

1876- Battle of the Little Rosebud- The Ogalala Sioux under Crazy Horse repulsed U.S. cavalry and allied Crow warriors under George Crook. Crazy Horse amazed the white generals who claimed he maneuvered his warriors around the field like elite European light cavalry. They started calling him the Napoleon of the Plains. Crazy Horse then moved the Ogalala to the Little Big Horn to meet Sitting Bull, and fight Custer. Even though he was not badly beaten, Gen. Crook suspended his campaign and went fishing, and so was no help to Custer.

1873- Women’s Rights leader Susan B. Anthony went on trial for attempting to vote.
She was found guilty by an all-male jury and fined $100, which she refused to pay.

1885- The pieces of the Statue of Liberty arrive from France. Some assembly required...

1893- Cracker Jacks invented by RW Reuckheim. Their name came from Teddy Roosevelt sampling the caramel corn, and exclaimed “These are Crackerjack!”- popular slang back then for something very good.

1893- The last Queen of Hawaii, Liliuokalani, was overthrown by a junta of American plantation owners led by Sanford Dole. The US apologized in 1992.

1917- The Republic of Finland is declared.

1919 - "Barney Google" cartoon strip, by Billy De Beck, premiered.

1930- Using 6 solid gold pens President Herbert Hoover signed the Harley-Smoot Act slapping huge trade tariffs on imports from overseas. Britain and France and their overseas colonies retaliated with tariffs on American exports. The American stock market had collapsed 6 months before; now this shortsighted act sparked a trade war with the ruined economies of postwar Europe. It all but ensured that the Great Depression would spiral out of control, hitting rock bottom in 1932.

1940- The Nazis had taken Paris and the French were asking for surrender terms. An invasion of Great Britain seemed imminent. Today on the BBC radio, Prime Minister Winston Churchill inspired Britons with his famous speech:” We shall fight them on the beaches, we shall fight them in the hills and in the towns… we shall defend our island home. We shall Never Surrender!”

1946- The first mobile telephone was installed in an automobile in St. Louis, Missouri.

1950-Future attorney general and Senator Robert Kennedy married heiress Ethel Scheckter.

1952- Jack Parsons died in a massive explosion in his Pasadena kitchen. Parsons was a founder of the Jet Propulsion Lab and the Aerojet Corporation. One of the nations top rocket scientists, his research into rocket fuels powered everything from World War II bazooka shells to the Space Shuttle engines.
But Parsons also had a strange second life in the occult. He was a follower of Alastair Crowley, sometimes signed his name as AntiChrist, and once tried to raise a demon in a white-magic ceremony. His close friends included writer Robert Heinlein and Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. His mother committed suicide soon after the explosion. No one is sure what caused the explosion that killed him, but he was cavalier in his use of dangerous materials “

1964- The first Universal Studios tram car tour. Carl Laemmle had been inviting tourists in for a nickel to watch movies be filmed as early as 1915.

1968- Ohio Express’ single “Yummy, Yummy, Yummy I got love in my Tummy” went gold.

1972- THE WATERGATE BREAK IN- President Richard Nixon's staff, trying to gain an edge on an upcoming election, hire men to break into Democratic National Committee's offices in the Watergate Hotel to steal election strategy documents. They had already broken in once before but the batteries on the wiretap they planted were defective so they wanted to replace them and copy some more documents. Hotel security guards caught three Cubans and a man named Frank Sturgis. One Cuban had, in his pocket, a check made out by a White House employee named E. Howard Hunt.

This "Third-Rate Burglary" and subsequent cover-up ulcerated into a major scandal that eventually forced the first ever resignation of a US president. President Lyndon Johnson had bugged the Republicans in 1967 and President Kennedy used the IRS to audit politicians he didn’t like, but the general public didn’t know that yet. President Nixon told his aides: "nobody's going to make a big deal that a Republican President broke into Democratic headquarters."

1976- The Soweto Uprising. A march turned into a running battle as thousands of South African black protestors battled police in their poor townships.

1990- The Battle of Century City- Police attacked 500 striking building maintenance workers and janitors, mostly Central American immigrants, for trying to form a union.

1994- THE WHITE BRONCO CHASE- Movie actor and Hall of Fame football player O.J. Simpson was wanted for questioning about the grisly murder of his second wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her boyfriend Ron Goldman. This day OJ tried to escape. He and his football friend Al Cowlings led police on a strange slow-speed pursuit for two hours around the freeways of Los Angeles as the world watched amazed on live television. He eventually was convinced to surrender. OJ Simpson was acquitted of murder in a controversial trial, but found guilty in a civil wrongful death suit.
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Yesterday’s question: What is the Uncanny Valley?

Answer: A term coined by Japanese robotics expert Masahiro Mori in 1970. That we enjoy simple robots like R2D2 or the Robbie the Robot, but when the design too closely resembles a human being, we are repulsed and react with dread.


June 16, 2017
June 16th, 2017

Question: What is the Uncanny Valley?

Yesterdays Question answered below Question: Many European monarchies have barons, princes, counts and dukes, but only England had Earls. What is an Earl?
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History for 6/16/2017
Birthdays: Stan Laurel, Willy Boskovsky, Joyce Carol Oates, Nelson Doubleday, Brian Eno, animator Pete Burness, Martha Graham, Erich Segal, Jack Albertson, Helen Traubel, Ron LeFlore, Laurie Metcalf, Sonia Braga is 67, John Cho is 45.

Today is the Feast Days of Saints Tychon and Saint Luthgard.

1686 BC- King Hammurabi the Lawgiver died in Babylon. He was succeeded by his son Samsu-iluna.

391 A.D.- Roman Emperor Theodosius I sent the Prefect of Egypt orders to close the pagan temples and forbid the any further practice of the worship of Isis, Serapis and Amon-Ra. It was Theodosius' policy to purge the now Christian Empire of the last vestiges of the old pagan religions. Theodosius closed Plato's Academy, silenced the Oracle of Delphi, burned the Sybilline Books and stopped the Olympic Games.

1497- Amerigo Vespucci reached the mainland of South America.

1549- Catherine de Medici entered Paris as the bride of King Henry II of France. Many French noblemen objected to the “That fat Florentine shopkeepers daughter and her gang of corrupt Italians” but she dominated French politics for decades the way Elizabeth Ist dominated England. She inspired the Saint Batholemew’s Day Massacre, which is why there are few French Protestants today. She also brought a brilliant retinue of Italian cooks using new foods like artichokes and parsley. Modern scholars say Catherines influences helped French cuisine break out of the medieval rut and begin it’s ascendancy to Haute Cuisine.

1657- First recorded mention in London of chocolate for sale. Xocoaltl was served to Hernando Cortez by Montezuma in 1517 but it was pretty bitter stuff. The Spaniards tamed Chocolate with sugar and kept the formula a secret for 100 years. The Dutch figured it out and added milk for Milk Chocolate. Sir John Sloan the British chemist invented a formula as well. The Maya also gave Europeans the first Vanilla beans.

1779- Spain joined France and Holland in declaring war on Britain over the American Revolution.

1788- The Virginia Convention met to bring together the opponents to the new US Constitution. Led by Patrick Henry, after several weeks’ discussion they adjourned without coming up with any serious alternative to the Constitution.

1815-BATTLES OF QUATRE BRAS (Four Corners) & LIGNY- Napoleon's last victory. Napoleon slipped his army into Belgium in between Wellington's and his Prussian (German) allies then split his own army in three. While one part stalled the English, Napoleon defeated the Prussian army and sends it running. The engagement might have been more decisive if the flying reserve under General D’Erlon hadn't gotten conflicting instructions. They spent the entire day marching back and forth between the two battles. The Prussian's recovered and Wellington fell back on a little intersection outside of Brussels called Waterloo.

1857-WAR OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENTS-One of the strangest incidents in law enforcement history. The New York City Police Dept. under Mayor Fernando Wood was so unbelievably corrupt that Governor Samuel Tilden built a second police force called the Metropolitan Police Force and ordered it to take over the city and arrest the Mayor. They were stopped on the steps of City Hall by the original NYPD and a fight broke out. While citizens and criminals alike looked on in amazement, hundreds of blue-coated policemen clubbed, battered and shot each other in the street. Washington D.C. negotiated a settlement that if the state police force would disband Mayor Wood would resign. He ran for mayor again and was elected 5 years later in time to start the New York City Draft Riots of 1863.

1858- Abe Lincoln says in a speech “ A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

1884 - On Coney Island Amusement Pier the Switchback Railway, the first roller coaster began operating.

1897- Congress approves the treaty to annex the Kingdom of Hawaii.

1902- A musical play of L Frank Baum’s fantasy story the Wizard of Oz premiered at Chicago’s Grand Opera House. When Baum was writing down the stories at one point he was stuck for a name for the magical kingdom. He looked down at his desk files that were labeled A-N and O-Z.

1903 – The Pepsi Cola Company formed.

1903-. As Henry Ford filed papers of incorporation of his Ford Automobile Company, the first Ford automobiles go on sale at the Tenvoorde sales lot in Minnesota. The Tenvoorde is the oldest Ford dealership in the world and is still in business today, still run by the Tenvoorde Family.

1904- "Blume's Day" all the actions in James Joyce's "Ulysses" takes place on this one day in Dublin. This day Dubliners dress up as characters from the book and do readings.

1920- International Telephone and Telegraph incorporates- IT&T.

1932- Broadway star Mae West heads west for Hollywood to make movies.

1933-Franklin Roosevelt signs the National Recovery Act (NRA) and the Glass-Steagel Act, which orders big banks to separate commercial bond business from private savings and loans. This way big banks that ruined themselves in the Stock Market Crash couldn’t destroy the savings of average people who never bought a stock or bond. A heavy publicity campaign encouraged Americans to rally under the blue eagle symbol of the NRA.
The NRA was struck down as unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 1937 but Glass-Steagel stayed in effect, much to the chagrin of banking corporations. It was finally rescinded by Bill Clinton in 1999, creating the financial collapse of 2008.

1939- Bandleader Chick Webb died at age 30. Webb was an unlikely pop star, a hunchbacked, tuberculate little person who played drums, but his band The Chick Webb Orchestra pioneered the new Jazz form called Swing Music and inspired the Big Band Sound. One of Webb’s last actions before succumbing to his debilitating health problems was to make a star out of 19-year-old street singer named Ella Fitzgerald.

1940- As the Nazi tanks continue to roll deeper into France, French Premier Paul Reynaud resigned, and elderly Great War hero Marshal Phillipe Petain formed a new government and asked the Germans for terms of surrender.

1941-Operation Battle Axe- In the Sahara Desert, Rommel the Desert Fox defeated the British Army under Sir Archibald Wavell.

1941- President Franklin Roosevelt ordered Nazi Germany and Italy to close their diplomatic consulates and leave the country.

1943- 54 year old actor Charlie Chaplin married his fourth wife, 18 year old Oona O’Neill. In Hollywood, Chaplin’s nickname was “Chickenhawk Charlie” for his fondness for underage girls. Oona did remain his wife until the end of his life in 1971.

1947 –The 1st regular broadcast network news show began-Dumont's "News from Washington".

1952- The CBS television comedy My Little Margie premiered. It starred Gale Storm and Charlie Farrell.

1955- Disney’s Lady and the Tramp premiered.

1958-Imre Nagy, who led Hungarys ill-fated uprising against Communist domination in 1956, was hanged by the Soviets.

1959- Actor George Reeves, who played the 1950s television Superman, went upstairs during a dinner party and shot himself with a Luger pistol. Actor Gig Young, who was a friend of Reeves, said the actor 's career was going well and his love life was fine. He never believed the actor would shoot himself. Gig Young shot himself in 1981.
Many of Reeves friends also wonder if it was a suicide because Reeves had been dating a socialite named Toni Mannix who’s husband Eddie Mannix, VP of MGM had mob connections. Another story has Toni Mannix counting among her boyfriends Lucky Lucciano, the head of the NY Mafia. The bullet entrance in George Reeves body didn’t have the customary powder burns of a suicide and there were other bullet holes in the floor and ceiling. Also the gun in Reeves hand had been wiped clean of fingerprints.

1960- Alfred Hitchcock's thriller "Psycho" premiered.

1963- Cosmonaut Valentina Tereschkova was the first woman to go into space.

1963- David Ben-Gurion, who directed the Jewish Zionist independence movement since 1936 and was Israel’s first Prime Minister, stunned the young nation by announcing his retirement. He declared he was worn out by the strain of power. He lived quietly in a Kibbutz in the Negev Desert, occasionally coming out to give a speech.
In 1968 he was invited to visit South Africa at the height of its racist apartheid laws. At dinner Ben-Gurion turned to the Calvinist Afrikanz bishops and asked:” And how do you explain to your flock that Moses married a black woman?”

1966-YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT… The Supreme Court handed down the ruling Miranda vs. Arizona, overturning the conviction of an Ernesto Miranda, who was jailed after he was tricked into confessing an assault of a Phoenix woman. This ruling established the famous Miranda Rights, read to every suspect upon arrest. Ernesto Miranda was retired and convicted again and was stabbed in a bar fight in 1972.

1967- The film “The Dirty Dozen” debuted.

1987- Italian porn star Ciccolina announced that since all politicians were whores and she was a whore, she would run for office. This made sense to Italians who this day elected her overwhelmingly to a seat in Parliament.

2015- Outrageous reality show host and self-proclaimed billionaire Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for US President. At the time he had so few followers he had to hire an audience to fill out his press conference at Trump Tower.
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Yesterday’s Question: Many European monarchies have barons, princes, counts and dukes, but only England had Earls. What is an Earl?

Answer: The term Earl came from the old Viking title of a lord called a Jarl. In England it is above most nobility except Dukes and Princes.


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