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March 7th, 2009 sat
March 7th, 2009

Question: Is famed Chicano actor Cheech Marin actually of Iranian ancestry?

Yesterdays Question answered below: Who was Morpheus?
History for 3/7/2009
Birthdays: Maurice Ravel, Piet Mondrian, Roman Emperor Geta, Luther Burbank, Tammy Fae Baker, Willard Scott, Lynn Swann, Franco Harris, Daniel D. Travanti, Rachel Weisz is 38, Michael Eisner is 67, Wanda Sykes is 45, Peter Saarsgard

322 BC- the Greek philosopher Aristotle died of indigestion.

1765- PARLIAMENT PASSES THE STAMP ACT. Ever since winning Canada and India from France, England had to come up with ways to pay for her massive war debt as well as garrisoning and administering of all the new possessions. The Stamp Act ordered that all purchases and exports to and from America have a royal stamp (i.e. tax) on them, sort of like the stamp you see on liquor bottle caps. These taxes were already in place in England, so Whitehall felt nobody would mind. Americans went ballistic and overnight became a nation of smugglers. They most strongly objected to the idea that the tax was levied without their consent. No one consulted their elected representatives and there were no American seats in Parliament. Even though the unpopular act was repealed a year later after Benjamin Franklin successfully argued in Parliament, the resentment against the mother country lingered. The British in turn were surprised and annoyed by the all the fuss. They felt the Yankees were and ungrateful people they had defeated French and Indians for.

1862- THE BATTLE OF PEA RIDGE- Yankees under General Curtis defeated a Confederate army under Gen. Stirling Price, keeping Missouri in the Union. It was a confused battle with militias, frontier scouts like Wild Bill Hickock and Creek Indians under Confederate Colonel Stand Watie. Curtis directed the battle in an old brown corduroy jacket and nuzzled a shotgun in his lap. The Creeks captured a Union battery but stopped their attack to dance with the scalps of the bluecoats. Hey, that's not in the Rules of Engagement !

1877- Bill Reed, a Union Pacific Railroad worker discovered a vast field of dinosaur fossils at Como Bluff Wyoming. "The bones extend for seven miles and are by the ton!"

1906- Finland becomes the first nation to give women the right to vote.

1916- BMW- The manufacturing firms of Karl Rapp and Gustav Otto merged to form the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG -Bavarian Aircraft Works. The company would later become the Bayerische Motor-Werke -Bavarian Motor Works or BMW. The Logo circle actually represents a white propeller turning against a blue sky- the colors of the old Kingdom of Bavaria flag, and the Medieval heraldic shield of the old ruling dynasty the Wittelsbachs. After the war, BMW was prohibited from manufacturing aircraft engines, as their engines had powered the fiercest fighters of he Luftwaffe, among them the Messerschmitt Bf 109 and the Focke-Wulf 190. So BMW focused on making cars.

1932-BATTLE OF THE RIVER ROUGE- At the depth of the Great Depression unemployment in Detroit was up to 50% of the population. 10,000 desperately unemployed auto workers stage a protest march on Henry Ford's Rouge River plant, the largest factory in the world. They are met by police and thugs who fired into the crowd, killing 3 and wounding 25. Henry Ford, (who personally made $10 million that year) had machine guns mounted on his home's roof and advised his chief executives to carry sidearms. Fords private in-house police were called by the Orwellian misnomer the Service Department.

1942- The Japanese army captured Rangoon and cut the Burma Road, severing Anglo- Chinese supply lines. After this supplies would have to be brought in 'Over the Hump" meaning flown by unescorted transport planes from India over the Himalayas.

1945- THE BRIDGE AT REMAGEN- A hostile army had not crossed the Rhine into Germany since Napoleon in 1806. The Germans called their defense of the border the Seigfried Line. The fleeing Nazi's had ordered all Rhine bridges destroyed but the bridge at Remagen was detonated with inferior charges. So it stayed intact as the U.S. Third Army approached. Sgt. Alex Drabik of Ohio ran across the bridge, weaving back and forth like a football player with the enemy firing at him from all sides. Just as he reached the other side a Nazi popped out, pointed a lugar pistol in his face and pulled the trigger. The gun was empty. The Siegfried Line was breached, the Remagen bridge collapsed of exhaustion after the war and Sgt. Drabik died of very old age in 1993.

1947- Winston Churchill, while giving a speech in America about the Soviet dominance of Eastern Europe coins the term "Iron Curtain". " From Zagreb on the Adriatic to Stettin in the Baltic, an Iron Curtain has descended across Europe." The Iron Curtain came down in 1989.

1951- The Prime Minister of Iran- General Ali Rasmara was assassinated by Islamic extremists.

1965- THE EDMUND PETTUS BRIDGE-As Dr. Martin Luther King’s Civil Rights marchers reached the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Gov George Wallace had Alabama police ambush them with firehoses, teargas, bullwhips and attack dogs. Dozens of peaceful marchers were beaten and hospitalized. Three were killed. The brutal images on television shocked the nation had probably did more to ensure passage of the National Civil Rights Bill than anything the police could do to stop it.

1969- Golda Meir became Prime Minister of Israel.

1988- 300 pound female impersonator Harry Milstead, better known as Divine in the John Waters films, died of sleep apnia.

1999- Famed film director Stanley Kubrick died just five days after completing his final film Eyes Wide Shut.
Yesterdays Question: Who was Morpheus?

Answer: The Greek God of Sleep and Dreams, the son of Hypnos. Dr Frederich Surturner, who invented Morphine, named it for him. Also the cool character Lawrence Fishburne played in The Matrix Movies.