Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, May 26, 2014)
Word of the Day

demagogue

Definition:(noun) A leader who obtains power by means of impassioned appeals to the emotions and prejudices of the populace.
Synonyms:rabble-rouser
Usage: The seditious harangues of demagogues in Faneuil Hall have made rebels of a loyal people and deprived me of my country.
Article of the Day

But wait! There's more!

The now-familiar phrase "But wait! There's more!" first accompanied infomercials for the "amazing" Ginsu knife in the 1970s. These ads also urged viewers to "Call now! Operators are standing by!" By bringing the direct-marketing techniques of door-to-door sales and print advertising to television, the Ginsu ads established the formula for the modern infomercial. "Ginsu" was actually a word that executives made up to evoke images of Japanese samurai swords. What were the knives originally called? More...
This Day in History

Andrew Johnson Avoids Impeachment by One Vote (1868)

Johnson became president following Abraham Lincoln's assassination. When he attempted to dismiss his Secretary of War without senatorial consent, congressional leaders—for the first time in US history—sought to remove the president from office. Their first attempt failed, but in 1868, the House passed a resolution of impeachment against him. During the trial, the charges proved weak, and the two-thirds vote needed for conviction failed by one vote. Which senators voted against their party? More...
Today's Birthday

Dorothea Lange (1895)

Lange was a profoundly influential American documentary photographer. During the Great Depression, her photos of stark poverty led to her employment by a federal agency to bring the plight of the poor to public attention. Her images were so effective that the government was compelled to establish camps for migrant laborers. Lange produced several other photo essays, including one documenting the WWII internment of Japanese-Americans. Who is the subject of her best-known photo, "Migrant Mother"? More...
Quotation of the Day
I have no faith in human perfectability. I think that human exertion will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active - not more happy - nor more wise, than he was 6000 years ago.

Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

Idiom of the Day

Freudian slip

Any inadvertent verbal or written mistake that reveals, or can be construed as revealing, an unconscious or repressed intention, belief, thought, attitude, etc. Named for the Sigmund Freud, considered the founding father of psychoanalysis, whose work largely focused on the unconscious and repressed elements of the human psyche. More...
Today's Holiday

Lag B'Omer

The name of this Jewish holiday means "thirty-three omer," an omer being a sheaf of barley or wheat. In the biblical book of Leviticus, the people were commanded by Jehovah to make an offering of a sheaf of barley on each of the 50 days between Passover and Shavuot. After the evening service, the number of the day was solemnly announced, and, in time, this ceremony came to be known as "the counting of the omer." Lag ba-Omer represents a break in the otherwise solemn season between Passover and Shavuot. More...
In the News

Cities Fail to Clear the Air

The air quality in most of the world's cities does not meet safe standards as set forth by the World Health Organization. A survey of 1,600 cities in 91 different countries found that nearly 90 percent of the people living in these cities breathe air deemed unsafe, with half of them being exposed to air pollution at least 2.5 times higher than recommended levels. Though some cities are making improvements, air quality in most is declining. Asia is currently ranked worst when it comes to air quality, followed by South America and Africa. More...
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