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Jan 11, 2020
January 11th, 2020

Quiz: People say Pres. Trump is looking for a “ Reichstag Fire” moment. What does that mean?

Yesterday’s question answered below: What is a platitude?
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History for 1/11/2020
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Theodosius I, Alexander Hamilton, Gliere, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Harry Selfridge, the London department store guy, Rod Taylor, David Wolper, Lyle Lovett, Ben Crenshaw, Naomi Judd, Joan Baez, Stanley Tucci, Disney animator Prez Romanillos, Amanda Peet is 48

Roman festival Carmentalia, or the Feast of the Nine Muses.

1025- Byzantine Emperor John Tzimisces poisoned. He had become Emperor after seducing the previous emperor’s wife and assassinating him. John was succeeded by Basil II "the Bulgar Slayer".

1775- Frances Salvador, a South Carolina plantation owner was elected to the colony’s legislature. This makes him the first person of the Jewish faith to ever hold office in America. He was known as the Paul Revere of the South, because he raised the alarm through the countryside when the redcoats approached Charleston. One year later he was killed fighting British allied Cherokees.

1803 –U.S. diplomats James Monroe and Robert Livingston sailed for France to try and make a deal with Napoleon for the city of New Orleans. Instead, Napoleon sells them the entire U.S. Midwest, from the Bayous to Montana. The Louisiana Purchase.

1813- SAUVE’ QUI PEUT! “Every Man for Himself.” Joachim Murat was a bold cavalryman who rose to high command under Napoleon. He married Napoleon’s sister Caroline and was made the King of Naples. Back then that meant the bottom half of Italy, south of Rome. But after Napoleon’s disastrous retreat from Moscow, Murat began the New Year by changing sides. He abandoned the freezing French army recovering in Poland and announced he was taking Naples into the Grand Alliance against Napoleon. Even Nappy’s own sister Caroline endorsed his decision. But this amazing act of betrayal didn’t save his throne. Murat was still overthrown and executed.

1862- Abraham Lincoln accepted the resignation of Simon Cameron as Secretary of War. Lincoln said:” The only thing that man never stole was a red hot stove.” He replaced him with Edwin Stanton, a lawyer who was the first to get a client off a murder charge with a plea of temporary insanity.

1863- The Confederate Armies in Tennessee and Kentucky were commanded by General Baxton Bragg, a conscientious if sour and unimaginative man. Bragg wasted two near victories at Perryville and Stones River by ordering a retreat just when the Yankees were beaten. Southern newspapers called for his ouster.
This day Bragg demanded a letter of support from all his generals. His top divisional commanders Hardee, Cleburne, Cheatham and Breckenridge not only refused, they sent their own letters to Richmond calling him an incompetent coward. Nathan Bedford Forrest hated Bragg so much, he once pulled his sword on him. But Bragg had a friend in President Jefferson Davis. Baxton Bragg convinced Davis he was the innocent victim of a conspiracy. So Davis reconfirmed Bragg in command. Only after losing most of the state of Tennessee, was Bragg finally replaced. He was promoted, kicked upstairs.

1863- Battle of Arkansas Post. Union forces under John McClernand and David Dixon Porter capture a large Confederate fort guarding the conflux of the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers. McClernand at one point was angling with the War Dept. to replace that drunk Ulysses S. Grant.

1874- Gail Borden, the inventor of condensed milk, died and was buried beneath a tombstone made to look like one of his milk cans.

1879- THE ZULU WAR began. British control over the Boers (white afrikkaners of South Africa ) was always strained. The Governor of Capetown. Lord Chelmsford, decided to distract the Boers by picking a fight with neighboring KwaZulu, the Zulu Empire, the largest centralized black state in Africa. He had only vague instructions from the Foreign Office to do so. Still he was confident a few natives with spears wouldn't give a modern European army too much trouble. On Jan. 22nd the Zulu wiped out his army at Ishandlwana, inflicting the worst defeat on a British army in a generation. The full weight of the British Empire, including units brought from India and Canada, were required to finish a war started over nothing by a regional governor.

1892- French impressionist painter Paul Gaughin, aged 46, married a 13 year old Tahitian girl named Tehura.

1908- President Teddy Roosevelt declared the entire Grand Canyon a National Monument. “The Ages have been at work at it and Man can only mar it.”

1913- Horse drawn public transport ended in Paris. As the last horse-omnibus moved through the streets. Parisians held mock funerals.

1922- Insulin first used to treat diabetes.

1942- Japanese forces attacked the Dutch East Indies and Borneo.

1942- In the dead of night, German submarine U-123 slipped into New York harbor, and right past the Statue of Liberty up the Hudson about to where the George Washington Bridge would be, before turning back. Captain Reinhard Hardegen was surprised the Americans had not instituted black-out rules yet. The lights of Manhattan twinkled brightly.
1943- American Communist writer Carlos Tresca was shot and killed on a New York street. His killer was never found. It’s been speculated he was killed by agents of Mussolini or even agents of Stalin.

1944- Mussolini has his foreign minister Count Ciano and his army chief Marshal De Bono, shot by firing squad. Count Ciano was his own son-in-law.

1948- President Harry Truman called for the creation of free, two-year community colleges for all those who desired a college education.

1949- The first recorded snowfall in Los Angeles.

1949- Cornerstone laid for Washington D.C.’s Islamic Center, the first major mosque in the US.

1963- A record was released in Britain called “Please, Please Me” recorded by a working class rock & roll band from Liverpool called The Beatles. It was their first hit.

1964- U.S. Surgeon General Luther Terry gave the first warnings against smoking. The Nazis had prohibited smoking in government buildings in 1939.

1965- Whisky-A-Go-Go, the first Disco opened on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. Discotecque is French for record library. An earlier Whisky had opened in Chicago. The LA Whisky a Go Go opened with a live band led by Johnny Rivers, featuring a mini-skirted female DJ spinning records between sets from a suspended cage at the right of the stage. That July, the DJ danced during Rivers' set. The audience thought it was part of the act and the concept of Go-Go dancers was born. Groovy!

1995- Warner Bros purchased a dozen metromedia television stations around the US and this day started them off as the WB Network, today called the CW.

1999- John Stewart became the anchor of the Daily Show on Comedy Central.

2004- Harvard students Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes, registered the domain name Facebook.com. It originally was a way to rate female students they knew “hot or not”.

2018- President Donald Trump earned the anger of the world when in an open meeting with senate leaders he said, “Why are we accepting people from shithole countries like Haiti, El Salvador and Africa, when we could have people from Norway?”
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Yesterday’ Question: What is a platitude?

Answer: Platitudes are well worn moral sayings that have been used so often and in so many contexts that they no longer carry any appreciable meaning.
A pointless and inane statement presented as though it was of grave importance.


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