Friday, January 30, 2009

Today's Word—Evil Stoopidity?

Support Newspapers!

“The government is bailing out Wall Street for being evil and the car companies for being stupid. But print journalism brings you Paul Krugman and Anna Quindlen. Also, in 1898 Joseph Pulitzer of the New York World and William Randolph Hearst of the New York Journal started the Spanish-American War. All of the Lehman Brothers put together couldn’t cause as much evil stupidity as that.”
—P.J. O’Rourke, columnist, The Weekly Standard, December 2008
(Thanks to alert WORDster Dan Kubiske) (Click for full column.)

Today in History
2003 Shoe-bomber Richard Reid sentenced to life; 1994 Skater Dan Jansen breaks world record in 500m; 1972 Bloody Sunday: 13 Catholic marchers killed by British troops in Northern Ireland; 1969 Beatles’ last public performance; 1968 Tet Offensive begins; 1948 Gandhi assassinated; 1933 Hi-yo!!! “The Lone Ranger” debuts on Detroit radio; 1933 Adolf Hitler becomes chancellor of Germany; 1930 First play underwritten by federal grant; 1835 President Andrew Jackson narrowly escapes assassination; 1649 King Charles I beheaded for treason

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Today's Word—Future Tense

Yes, Deepthroat, There Is a Future

“You get the truth by not working an hour or a day on something. It takes a long time. There’s a tradition in newspapers of digging into things. It’s a part of their culture. It’s a part of their belief in what we call accountability reporting—really making every power center accountable for what they’re doing. I think that’s going to live on.”
—Bob Woodward, journalist and author, 2008 (Thanks to alert WORDster Mark Larson)

NEWS NOTE: Utah university students, faculty and staff rally at the State Capitol in Salt Lake City tomorrow to protest a projected 17% cut to higher education: 10:30 a.m. Friday (See Save Higher Education in Utah! on Facebook.)

Today in History
2002 George W. Bush’s “Axis of Evil” speech; 1998 Birmingham, Ala., abortion clinic bombed; 1979 Deng Xiaoping and Jimmy Carter open diplomatic relations; 1964 “Dr. Strangelove” premiers; 1958 Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman marry; 1936 First Baseball Hall of Famers: Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, etc.; 1927 Moneywrench writer Edward Abbey’s birthday; 1900 American Baseball League formed in Philadelphia; 1891 Liliuokalani proclaimed queen of Hawaii; 1845 Poe publishes “The Raven” in New York Evening Mirror; 1820 King George III dies insane

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Today's Word—Inklings

John Updike, 1932-2009

“I would write ads for deodorants or labels for catsup bottles, if I had to. The miracle of turning inklings into thoughts and thoughts into words and words into metal and print and ink never palls for me.”
—John Updike (1932-2009), Pulitzer Prize-winning
novelist and essayist, died yesterday at 76, 1967

“He used to say that when he wrote he was aiming for ‘a vague little spot a little to the east of Kansas.’ He became famous for his breathtaking descriptions, which could make anything — toilets, mudholes, worn carpet — seem oddly beautiful. In one of his short stories, he found God in a pigeon feather.”
—Joe Posanski, sportswriter, Kansas City Star, 1/27/09

“I’m a plugger. Even the way Rabbit sits in front of his Linotype machine day after day reminds me of myself, of the way I sit in front of the typewriter. Writing does not require any drive — it’s like saying a chicken requires drive to lay an egg.”
John Updike comparing himself to Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, 1972

(Click for NYTimes obit.)
(Click here for “John Updike: A Life in Letters” video interview.)
(See selected headlines on Updike.)

Today in History
1997: South African police admit to killing Stephen Biko; 1986: Space shuttle Challenge explodes on lift-off; 1973: Vietnam cease-fire; 1964: Soviets shoot down U.S. jet; 1959: Vince Lombardi hired as Packers coach;
1956: Elvis’ first TV appearance; 1916: Louis Brandeis appointed to Supreme Court; 1598: Sir Francis Drake dies off Panama

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Today's Word—Press Mosh Pit

News from the Obama White House:

“At [Obama press secretary Robert] Gibbs’ maiden press conference, all that was missing was a brass band. The briefing room, which is about the size of a suburban garage, was stuffed with easily more than 100 journalists and photographers. Veteran reporters surfed through puffy winter coats to get to their assigned seats. Helen Thomas had to take the arm of a colleague to run the gantlet. A cameraman for a foreign news outlet set up a stepladder in the middle of the narrow aisle, and when he swung to capture the scene his buttocks offended a series of his colleagues.”
—John Dickerson, chief political correspondent,, 1/22/09 (Click here for link.)

Today in History
2006: Last Western Union telegram; 1996: Monica Seles wins first Grand Slam since being knifed on tennis court; 1976: “Laverne and Shirley” premieres; 1967: Astronauts Gus Grissom, Edward White and Roger Chaffee die in Apollo I fire; 1951: 1st A-bomb test in Nevada; 1926: TV demonstrated; 1918: 1st Tarzan movie, “Tarzan of the Apes”; 1888: National Geographic Society founded; 1785: Georgia’s first state university

Monday, January 26, 2009

Today's Word—Small Minds

Good Thinking

“Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.”
—Admiral Hyman Rickover (1900-1986),
“Father of the Nuclear Navy”
(Thanks to alert WORDster Carol Wiebe)

Today in History
2005: Condoleezza Rice sworn in as secretary of state; 2001: Earthquake kills 13,000 in India; 1998: Bill Clinton t
estifies, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”; 1980: U.S. Olympic Committee votes against Moscow games; 1979: “Dukes of Hazzard” premiers; 1950: Republic of India born; 1940: Ronald Reagan marries Jane Wyman; 1838: Tennessee passes first prohibition law; 1788: Australia Day: First British ships of convicts land at New South Wales; 1500: Pinzon “discovers” Brazil

Friday, January 23, 2009

Today's Word—Emphasize the Trivial

On the Silver Screen, the TV Screen & the Front Page?

“The greatest danger in films based on history isn’t necessarily that you will be told something false, but that the emphasis will be on trivia. To me, the most common distortion of history is done through emphasizing the least important facts of historical events.”
—Howard Zinn, historian and social critic, in advance of Sundance appearance, 1/22/09

Today in History
2002: Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl kidnapped in Pakistan; 1997: Madeleine Albright sworn in as first female U.S. secretary of state; 1984: Hulk Hogan beats the Iron Sheik for first WWF title; 1977: “Roots” premiers; 1973: Nixon announces Paris Peace Accords; 1968: North Korea seizes USS Pueblo;
1957: Frisbee’s birthday! 1849: Elizabeth Blackwell is first woman M.D.; 1775: London merchants lobby for reconciliation w/ American colonies; 1556: Deadliest earthquake in history hits China

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Today's Word—Editor Gunned Down

Unvarnished Truth Can Kill You

“The free media serve as a mirror in which the public can see itself sans mascara and styling gel. From us you learn the state of your nation, and especially its management by the people you elected to give your children a better future. Sometimes the image you see in that mirror is not a pleasant one. But while you may grumble in the privacy of your armchair, the journalists who hold the mirror up to you do so publicly and at great risk to themselves. That is our calling, and we do not shirk it.”
—Lasantha Wickramatunga (1958-2009),
outspoken editor, The Sunday Leader,
assassinated Jan. 8 in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
From his own editorial-obituary. Wickramatunga had been highly critical of the government’s war against the Tamil Tigers.
(“And Then They Came for Me.” Full text of Wickramatunga’s posthumous editorial.)
(See BBC story on killing.)
(Thanks to alert WORDster Doug Cumming.)

Today in History
2008: Actor Heath Ledger found dead in his NYC apartment; 1998: Theodore Kaczynski pleads guilty as Unabomber; 1997: Madeleine Albright confirmed as first female U.S. secretary of state; 1973: LBJ dies; 1973: Roe v. Wade; 1968: “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” premiers on NBC; 1947: 1st commercial TV station west of the Mississippi; 1944: Allies land at Anzio; 1912: Bridge to Florida Keys opens; 1905: Russian Revolution begins with “Bloody Sunday”; 1840: British colonists reach New Zealand

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Today's Word—New Old Truths


Changing of the Guard

“Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends—hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism—these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths.”
Barack Obama, 44th U.S. president, 1/20/09

Click here for inauguration front pages.

Today in History
2004: Recording industry sues 532 computer users for distributing songs over Internet; 1994: Lorena Bobbitt acquitted in assault trial; 1990: John McEnroe disqualified from Australian Open; 1977: President Carter pardons Vietnam-era draft-dodgers; 1976: Concorde’s first flight; 1950: Alger Hiss convicted of perjury; 1924: Vladimir Lenin dies; 1916: Nudity banned in films; 1861: Five Southerners, including Jefferson Davis, quit the Senate; 1793: France’s King Louis XVI guillotined for treason

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Front Pages

Dinosaurs on Top of the News

They may be dying, but newspapers sure do the thing right. Check Poynter’s Front Page Collection of Obama inauguration coverage at this link.

Today's Word—First Rough Draft of History

The First Rough Draft of History

“BERLIN (Reuters) — Editorial writers around the world have been taking their final printed whacks at George W. Bush, accusing the president of tarnishing America’s standing with what many saw as arrogant and incompetent leadership. . . .
“‘A weak leader, Bush was just overwhelmed in the job,’ said Germany’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung under a headline: ‘The Failure.’ ‘He confused stubbornness with principles. America has become intolerant and it will take a long time to repair that damage.’” . . .
• The Sunday Times in London: “Bush leaves a country and an economy in tatters.”
The Daily Mail: “How will history judge George W.? Have we, perhaps, to quote his own mangled malapropisms, ‘misunderestimated’ him? On the plus side, after 9/11 he achieved what became his number one priority: to prevent his country suffering further attack on its own soil. Al Qaeda has been hugely weakened.”
The Scottish Daily Record: “America is now hated in many parts of the world. Bush leaves a legacy of wars and the world economy in meltdown. He has been dismissed as a buffoon and a war-monger, a man who made the world a more dangerous place while sending it to the brink of economic collapse.”
• Germany’s Die Zeit: “Bush brought great misery to the world with his ‘friend-or-foe’ mentality.”
Stern magazine: “Bush led the world’s most powerful nation to ruin. He lied to the world, tortured in the name of freedom and caused lasting damage to America's standing.”
• The Pan-Arab al-Hayat's headline: “We cried a lot and the joke was on us.”
• Austria’s Wiener Zeitung: “The United States was once the symbol of justice in the world but that has been damaged by Bush. A web of manipulation has cost America $900 billion and the lives of 4,000 soldiers—along with at least 500,000 Iraqis.”
• Warsaw’s daily Dziennik: The Bush presidency: “It was empty rhetoric.”
—Kirk Kirschbaum, Reuters reporter, 1/19/09. Click here for full story.
(Thanks to alert WORDster Tony Seton.)

Public Service Announcement:

Dear World:

We, the United States of America, your top quality supplier of ideals of democracy, would like to apologize for our 2001-2008 interruption in service.

The technical fault that led to this eight-year service outage has been located, and the software responsible was replaced November 4.

Early tests of the newly installed program indicate that we are now operating correctly, and we expect it to be fully functional on January 20.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the outage. We look forward to resuming full service and hope to improve in years to come. We thank you for your patience and understanding.

(Thanks to various alert WORDsters)

Today in History
2004: Salvation Army announces $1.5 billion gift from McDonald’s Ray and Joan Kroc; 1996: Yassir Arafat elected Palestinian leader; 1981: As Ronald Reagan is inaugurated the 40th president, 52 U.S. hostages are released in Teheran; 1961: Robert Frost reads at JFK inauguration;
1942: Nazi Wannsee Conference comes to “final solution” for Jews; 1841: Hong Kong becomes British; 1801: John Marshall becomes chief justice of the Supreme Court

Monday, January 19, 2009

Today's Word—MLK Day

The 2009 Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday falls the day before the inauguration of the nation’s first black president.


“We were here before the mighty words of the Declaration of Independence were etched across the pages of history. Our forebears labored without wages. They made cotton ‘king.’ And yet out of a bottomless vitality, they continued to thrive and develop. If the cruelties of slavery could not stop us, the opposition we now face will surely fail. . . . Because the goal of America is freedom, abused and scorned tho’ we may be, our destiny is tied up with America’s destiny."
—The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968), civil rights leader,
from his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963

“Give us the ballot and we will no longer have to worry the federal government about our basic rights.” Lincoln Memorial, 1957
Photo: Paul Schutzer/TimeLife ) (Click here for more MLK photos.)

More from MLK:

“From the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire, let freedom ring. From the mighty mount
ains of New York, let freedom ring. From the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania, let freedom ring. But not only that: Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.” —Martin Luther King Jr., “I Have a Dream” speech, Aug. 28, 1963

“I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.” —Martin Luther King Jr., Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech, Dec. 10, 1964

“If you will protest courageously, and yet with dignity and Christian love, when the histo
ry books are written in future generations, the historians will have to pause and say, ‘There lived a great people—a black people—who injected new meaning and dignity into the veins of civilization.’”—Martin Luther King Jr., Montgomery, Ala., Dec. 31, 1955

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”—Martin Luther King Jr.

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

Today in History
2001: Bill Clinton avoids indictment by admitting affair with Monica Lewinsky; 1981: U.S.-Iran agreement to release 52 U.S. hostages after 14 months; 1979: Former Atty. Gen. John Mitchell released after serving 19 months for Watergate crimes; 1974: Notre Dame breaks UCLA’s 88-game winning streak; 1966: Indira Ghandi becomes India’s prime minister; 1955: First TV presidential news conference; 1950: China recognizes North Vietnam; 1915: First air raid on Britain; 1809: Edgar Allan Poe born in Boston

Friday, January 16, 2009

Today's Word—Want to Buy a Nice Newspaper?

More From the Newspaper Morgue

NOTE: Today (1/15/09) is Scripps Co.’s deadline for bids to buy the ailing Rocky Mountain News, Colorado’s oldest newspaper.

A 130-year-old cross-town snipe at the Rocky Mountain News from rival Denver Daily Republican:

“The News is, perhaps, the only paper in the country that works directly for the injury of the greatest interest of its State. But it does so ignorantly, and so is in a measure to be excused. Though, of course, a paper that pretends to lead and direct public opinion ought to have intelligent ideas on questions affecting the public interest.”

Editorial, The Denver Daily Republican, 1879
(Thanks to alert WORDster Alan Kania)

More Newspaper Point-Counterpoint

TWITTER: The dumbest innovation of the century? memo to Tweeters: we don’t care what you think.”
NEWSPAPERS: Yes, print is troubled and some urban dailies are doomed. Still, on a screen or on dead trees, nothing shapes the conversation like facts.”
The Power Index: Player or Pretender?
TIME magazine, Dec. 29, 2008-Jan. 5, 2009

Today in History
2007: Illinois Sen. Barack Obama launches his presidential campaign; 1991: Operation Desert Storm to drive Iraq from Kuwait begins; 1979: Shah flees Iran; 1976: Donny & Marie show premiers; 1953: Corvette introduced; 1945: Hitler takes to his bunker; 1920: Prohibition goes into effect; 1547: Ivan the Terrible crowned czar of Russia

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Today's Word—Eat Up!

Going Down Laughing

“The political and commercial morals of the United States are not merely food for laughter, they are an entire banquet.”
—Mark Twain (1835-1910), curmudgeon,
from Bernard DeVoto, ed., Mark Twain in Eruption:
Hitherto Unpublished Pages About Men and Events

Today in History
2005: Mahmoud Abbas sworn in as Palentinian president; 2004: NASA’s rover, Spirit, starts wandering over Mars; 1974: Happy Days premiers; 1970: Moammar Qaddafi become premier of Libya; 1967: First Super Bowl: Green Bay 35, Kansas City 10; 1919: Molasses floods Boston streets; 1870: First use of the Democratic donkey; 1777: New Connecticut (Vermont) declares independence from England; 1559: Queen Elizabeth I crowned

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today's Word—Bits v. Bytes


“It’s different from reading news on the Internet, where you pick and choose what to read. If you read our paper, it’s a fairly quick read and you’ll read what you wanted to read, but you’ll also learn things you didn’t know you needed to know.”
—Mario Von Dongen, publisher, Santa Cruz Sentinel, 2008
(Thanks to alert WORDster Mark Larson) (CNPA Bulletin, 11/25/08)

Today in History
2004: Morgan Chase buys Bank One for $58 billion; 1998: Whitewater prosecutors interview First Lady Hillary Clinton; 1980: United Nations “deplores” Soviet invasion of Afghanistan; 1972: Richard Nixon announces new troops withdrawals from Vietnam; 1963: George Wallace inaugurated as Alabama’s governor; 1954: Marilyn Monroe weds Joe Dimaggio; 1943: FDR is first president to travel by plane—to Casablanca Conference w/ Churchill; 1875: Albert Schweitzer’s birthday; 1784: Continental Congress ratifies the Treaty of Paris

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Today's Word—24/7 Blather


“I get the feeling that the 24-hour news networks are like the bus in the movie ‘Speed.’ If they stop talking for a second, they think they’ll blow up.”
—Jon Stewart, The Daily Show, 2008
(Thanks to alert WORDster Ross Martin)

Today in History
1999: Michael Jordan retires; 1990: Virginia’s Douglas Wilder becomes nation’s first black elected governor; 1982: Air Florida jet crashes into the Potomac, killing 78; 1972: Richard Nixon announces new troops withdrawals from Vietnam; 1966: LBJ appoints Robert C. Weaver first black Cabinet officer; 1942: Henry Ford patents plastic car; 1910: First radio demonstration; 1898: Emile Zola’s ”J’accuse” letter is published; 1128: Pope Honorius II sanctions the Knights Templar

Monday, January 12, 2009

Today's Word—Deathwatch

Newspaper Morgue

“Virtually all the predictions about the death of old media have assumed a comfortingly long time frame for the end of print—the moment when, amid a panoply of flashing lights, press conferences, and elegiac reminiscences, the newspaper presses stop rolling and news goes entirely digital. . . . But what if the old media dies much more quickly? What if a hurricane comes along and obliterates the dunes entirely? Specifically, what if The New York Times goes out of business—like, this May?”
—Michael Hirschorn, writer, Atlantic Monthly, 2009
(Thanks—I think—to alert WORDster Alexandra Halsey)

MORE FROM THE MORGUE: The Hearst Corp. informed staffers at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer Friday that the 146-year-old newspaper will cease publication in 60 days unless a buyer is found. (Click here for story.)

Today in History
1991: Divided Congress OK’s BushI plan to use force to eject Iraq from Kuwait; 1971: “All in the Family” debuts; 1954: J. Foster Dulles announces “massive retaliation” strategy in Cold War; 1932: Hattie W. Caraway, D-Ark., becomes first woman elected to the Senate; 1926: “Sam ’n Henry,” the original “Amos ’n Andy,” debuts on Chicago radio; 1926: House rejects proposal to give women the vote; 1879: British-Zulu War begins; 1773: first museum in America, in Charleston, S.C.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Today's Word—The Full Story?

The Missing Links

“[T]he media narrows the expression of viewpoints to an extraordinary degree. We’ve already discussed the small population of talking heads on cable shows. At the same time, the interest aroused by figures like Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul occurred because, in my view, the American public had never heard people talk that way. Similarly, the Rev. [Jeremiah] Wright is espousing views that are hardly rare, but people react with shock and awe. People should take it as a sign that something is wrong—the media isn’t giving them the full story. By a long shot.”
—Michael Crichton (1942-2008), best-selling author and M.D., who died Nov. 4 (Click here).
(Thanks to alert WORDster Anne W. Anderson)

NOTE: The WORDman and alert WORDsters know—although Crichton apparently didn’t—that “media” is a plural noun...

Today in History
2007: Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveils iPhone; 1987: Reagan memo launches Iran-Contra scandal; 1972: Fire breaks out aboard Queen Elizabeth; 1958: First Japanese cars arrive in California; 1913: Richard Nixon's birthday; 1776: Thomas Paine publishes Common Sense; 1493: Columbus identifies manatees as mermaids in the Dominican Republic.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Today's Word—Cut 'Em a Break!

Public Service

“I can understand some of the reasons why journalism has a bad name. . . . But for all that, I don’t see the majority of reporters as exploitative and predatory. Most work harder for the public than they do for themselves. Many of our neighbors are better paid and spend more time with their families. Journalists regularly get into trouble for the sake of the community, often bearing community ire for doing so.”
—Chris Masters, Australian author and TV journalist, 2008 (Click here.)
(Thanks to alert Kiwi WORDster Charles Riddle)

Today in History
1998: Ramzi Yousef, “mastermind” of 1993 World Trade Center bombing, sentenced to life
1993: Elvis stamp released
1987: Dow Jones closes above 2,000 for the first time
1973: Vietnam Paris Peace Talks resume
1941: William Randolph Hearst blocks Citizen Kane ads
1914: Woodrow Wilson delivers his 14-point plan for peace
1877: Crazy Horse loses his final battle against U.S. Cavalry, in Montana
1642: Galileo dies

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Today's Word—Press Piffle


“What Americans don’t care much about is the piffle we put on TV these days, what they don’t care about is boring, irrelevant, badly told stories, and what they really hate is the presumption that they’re too stupid to know the difference.”
—Christiane Amanpour, CNN chief foreign correspondent, 2007

2009: Katie Couric’s 52nd birthday
1999: Clinton impeachment trial begins
1979: Pol Pot overthrown
1959: U.S. recognizes first Cuban government
1903: Zora Neale Hurston’s birthday
1892: Oklahoma mine explosion
1789: George Washington elected in America’s first presidential election.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Today's Word—Clean-up Time

Who’s Mr. Fix-It?

“I tried to imagine how foreign this campaign must seem to the reality of everyday life for...[those] whose life right now is a series of sighs and a stream of tears. How foreign and fraudulent the politics of sleaze, the polarizing almost savage pursuit of power that strokes the paranoia in us in order to divide and conquer. When this election is over, no matter who wins, there will be much to repair, if we have the will for it.”
Bill Moyers, journalist and commentator, 2008. Click here.

Today in History
2001: Congress certifies Bush as presidential winner
1994: Skater Nancy Kerrigan attacked with metal pipe
1982: William G. Bonin, “Freeway Killer” of 14 young men and boys, convicted in LA
1936: Debut of Porky the Pig
1912: New Mexico joins the Union
1838: Samuel Morse demonstrates telegraph
1759: George Washington marries Martha Dandridge Curtis
1412: Joan of Arc’s birthday

Monday, January 5, 2009

Today's Word 2009—Unfettered

Freedom and Citizenship

“Without an unfettered press, without liberty of speech, all of the outward forms and structures of free institutions are a sham, a pretense—the sheerest mockery. If the press is not free; if speech is not independent and untrammeled; if the mind is shackled or made impotent through fear, it makes no difference under what form of government you live, you are a subject and not a citizen.”
William E. Borah, (1865-1940), U.S. Senator; Remarks to the Senate, April 19, 1917
(Thanks to alert WORDster Steve Marston)

For one last amusing look back at 2008, click here to see Uncle Jay explaining the news.

Today in History:
2004: Pete Rose admits betting on baseball; 1994: Former House Speaker Thomas "Tip" O'Neill dies at 81; 1982: California landslides kill 33; 1933: Construction begins on Golden Gate Bridge; 1920: NY Yankees buy Babe Ruth; 1916: Britain creates first military draft; 1781: Benedict Arnold's forces capture and destroy Richmond; 1643: First divorce in the American colonies.