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Credit Syndicator

Full time opening for the right team player with heavy structured transaction experience.  Click here for description.

Funding Specialist

Full time opening for the right team player with heavy structured transaction experience.  Click here for description.

Monday, April 6, 2009

A jazz classic, one of the best jazz albums ever made. Drummer Shelly Manne,
Pianist Andrew Previn, Basist Leoy Vinnegar (1956.)

Composer, conductor, jazz pianist André Previn (Andreas Ludwig Priwin) KBE born April 6 1929 in Berlin, Germany. He became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1943, and grew up in Los Angeles. 1984: music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He was knighted in 1996 in UK. Previn has received thirteen Academy nominations for motion picture music scoring and conducting, with four Oscar wins: 1958 Gigi, 1959 Porgy & Bess, 1963 Irma la Douce, 1964 My Fair Lady. Among my favorite albums: Andre Previn Plays Vernon Duke, Plays Jerome Kern, Plays Harold Arlen.


Ray Welling Passes Away
    Classified Ads---Syndicator
Bulletin Board Complaint
Benchmark Financial Group, Aliso Viejo, CA
    Brad Peterson---New Capital Program
        Advertising in Leasing News Brings Results
“Offer an operating lease for accounting,
a tax lease for income tax”
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
    Direct Capital Closes New $100 MM Securitization
        Third ZRG Free Employment Webinar
Classified Ads---Help Wanted
    Bank Beat---Some good news this week
        Wednesday Lunch Member/Non-Member Atlanta, GA
Leasing News Top Stories---March 30--April 3
    Credit Card Companies gear up for Unemployment
        Mortgage Credit Quality Declines 4th Quarter
Who gets the “Top Pay” in the United States
    Gov't Would Remove Bank Chiefs if Needed
    Small business lending drops 57%
    Consumers fall behind on loans at record rate
    Airbus May Fail to Meet Goal A380 Deliveries
    Airlines flying aircraft less/valuation hole
    I.B.M. Withdraws $7 Billion Offer for Sun
    Disney announces 1,900 job cuts
    MGM hires bank to sell casino assets
    Underwood wins country music entertainer year
News Briefs---
    You May have Missed---
        California Nuts Brief---
    Sports Briefs---
"Gimme that Wine"
    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
    Baseball Poem
    Daily Puzzle
    Weather, USA or specific area
Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Ray Welling Passes Away

Ray Taylor Welling, 60, passed away at his home in St. George, Utah. He leaves behind a brother, sister, three children (Mindy, Ben and Melissa) and nine grandchildren. The family will hold a private memorial service. Dad lived with humor and hopefulness and played by his own rules. He loved few things better than a good story.
(Guess Book)

"Ray worked for International Paper, were he was a regional manager in the 80, in late 1989 he joined Harcourt Financial Services as the director of its “Lessee Advisor Group” where he built a great relationship with many of the better “Regional” airlines then operating in the United States. After Leaving Harcourt, Ray formed his own consulting practice “Regional Airline Services” once again advising these same regional airlines. Ray was one of the best in the industry at helping smaller airlines gain control of the airframes they required. Ray also did some other lease work as broker, work. He will be missed by all who knew him."

Bruce L Braviroff
SC Equipment Funding
Phone: 714-996-1298
Fax: 714-200-0314



Classified Ads--- Syndicator

Chicago, IL
Syndicator with 20+ years experience in selling or buying one-off leases and portfolios. Price, structure, negotiate and document transactions.
Full time position or contract work.

Overland Park, KS
Top Syndicator from single deal to portfolios. 20+ yrs exp. Available for contract work or full time position. Nationwide contacts.
Westchester County, NY
7+ years in pricing, credit, and syndications.  Strong credit skills and marketing experience at VP level.  All collateral.  MBA in Finance.

For a full listing of all “job wanted” ads, please go to:

To place a free “job wanted” Leasing News ad:

ELFA Career Center: Job Seekers (free):



Bulletin Board Complaint
Benchmark Financial Group, Aliso Viejo, CA

From Aimee O'Neill-Gilligan, Litex Incorporated, Fort Lauderdale, Florida:

“My husband is a chiropractor and we were looking for financing for x-ray equipment (approx. 42K)...

“In our first conversation (12/19/2008) (the name of the person they spoke with at Benchmark) said he saw no reason why we couldn't be financed immediately. We signed the attached agreement/LOI, faxed the deposit check (which they cashed immediately via ACH on 12/23) and submitted the various other business documents he requested.

“At least a month went by with him leaving me emails or messages 'just one more day' or 'by noon tomorrow' I should have an answer. Or, he'd need one more document from us. This seemed like a stalling tactic or maybe he just underestimated how long it would take. Meanwhile, this was holding up the progress of our clinic and costing us money. Plus our vendors were only going to hold the 2008 price for so long...

“Sometime in the beginning of February he called and said he could only get 30K but with the same terms. I thought about it for about a week then told him I really needed all the money. We wanted to fully finance the equipment.

“He came back saying that he could do the 30 K and separate 12K at the same time. I said that would work. Then he sent the paperwork for the 30K only. I sat on this waiting for the 12K paperwork. When it didn't arrive, I called and he said it was "never going to happen".

“Not to mention, the 30K loan paperwork had us paying a higher monthly rate (approx. $1,100) versus the originally proposed 42K at about $1,000). And, before he sent the paperwork, he never mentioned this. In fact he said it would be the same rate and terms.

“So, obviously, we were not able to get the full financing from Benchmark (as proposed originally or in their secondary attempt for two lease agreements) and I asked for my deposit back.

“This is when ****** said they needed to hold it for 90 days. I, of course, couldn't understand the reason he gave (a company policy which he disagreed with...).

“Then, he stopped accepting my calls as I asked for the immediate return of my deposit. He emailed that if didn't know if we'd get any money back.

“I had started copying Marcus Devin on these final emails...He started asking why I didn't partially finance with them (acknowledging to me that he knew they didn't live up to their end of what was promised.).

“He now will not return my emails...

“My intention now, if I can't get my money back, is to warn others and take away any and all possible business by telling my story.”

Aimee O'Neill-Gilligan
Litex Incorporated
5985 NW 31 Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309
T:954-970-0361 / F:954-974-7524

The above was received March 27, 2009 with all the supportive documents, correspondence, and copy of unsigned $30,000 lease. Marcus Devin, President of Benchmark Financial, was contacted the same day, then again on March 30 and received this response:

"This customer signed our Equipment Lease Agreement.

“They later decided to ‘borrow the money from their relatives’ and cancelled our agreement. I have this in writing from the customer.

“Per our agreement, the money is deemed earned if they cancel the agreement.

“We told the customer there would be no refund and they still “paid cash”

“Since we had already underwritten the loan, we tried to convince the customer to finance something with us, even if it’s 10k. We even offered to apply the advances to the new, smaller deal if they wanted and we would refund any excess. They declined our offer."

Aimme O'Neill-Gilligan stated they had never signed a second Equipment Lease agreement proposal for a lower dollar amount, but did state they received a $30,000 lease (which was provided in their documents) and it did not meet the terms of the original signed proposal regarding rate and dollar amount, nor did they receive a contract for the $12,000 remaining, being explicitly told by both the representative and Marcus Devin it was not going to happen.

Leasing News attempted to obtain a copy of the alleged new proposal and $30,000 signed lease contract. After several attempts, Marcus Davin responded on April 2, not including a copy of a signed second proposal or signed $30,000 lease contract that he claimed that he had:

"This customer applied for financing through one of our vendor program, they were APPROVED, they were sent documents that they signed and executed.

"At a later date, they decided to pay cash and cancelled our agreement.

"Because we had an open approval and as a good faith gesture, we offered to finance a smaller amount. We even offered to refund any money in excess of the first two payments if they moved forward. They told us “no, we paid cash”.

(Sic: capitalization and bold font in original email.)”

In the first Bulletin Board Complaint, Leasing News was unable to verify if Benchmark Financial was a member of the National Equipment Finance Association (NEFA), formerly the United Association of Equipment Leasing, and National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers (NAELB) which their web site claimed. Leasing News was able this time to verify from NEBA that he is not a member. NAELB did confirm that Benchmark Financial was a member in good standing and agreed to follow the ethical standards of their association.

The rating and other events in the first complaint remain:

Better Business Bureau: “F” rating.

Derek T. Braslow of Pogust, Braslow, Millrood, Conshohocken, PA, posted on the WEB January 28,2009 "Benchmark Financial Groups, LLC Class Action --- Lease Financing Bait and Switch?

Benchmark Financial Group is a licensed as a California Finance Lender, #603E780 as of August 6, 2008.

Previous Bulletin Board Complaint:



Brad Peterson---New Capital Program

Friday, April 3, 2009 Leasing News broke an “exclusive” regarding Brad Peterson, new Channel Partners, LLC program. Reportedly Balboa Capital, LEAF, Marlin, among many have gotten out of the “working capital” program available with a lease approval.

Leasing News saw Channel Partners as a substitute for this.
Brad had a request to clarify this more and sent the following eMail:

“Thanks for helping with the Channel Partners announcement. One clarification, our Working Capital Referral Program is actually a Merchant Cash Advance (MCA) where in exchange for a lump sum of cash, the business sells a fixed dollar amount of its future credit / debit card sales at a discount.

It is not a working capital loan, but rather a form of factoring. It's a very unique product and can provide access to capital for those business types listed in the announcement. Channel Partners will handle the entire process after the referral (sales, documentation, funding, etc.) and pay a referral fee to the broker on the amount funded. In many cases the business will qualify for a higher MCA than the original amount requested for the equipment purchase.

“We're anxious to bring this product in an "easy to use" structure to the broker/lessor market.

“I have already had a significant response to your newsletter this morning. I'm sure we'll be busy!

“Thanks again,”

Brad Peterson

Several readers contacted us regarding setting up the program,
including Paul Bosely of First Financial:

“We have set up a working capital program flier for two (2) of our brokers that we work with in the fitness industry. I have attached one of them to share with you the program we established with Brad…”
Paul Bosley, National Marketing Director
First Financial
3309 NE 33rd Street
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33308
Toll free Office Telephone (800) 956-7313
Fax (954) 630-1015
Cell (561) 702-5505

It appears many Leasing News readers have customers who may be open to this method of obtaining cash.

About the Channel Partner program:



Banner Advertising

The editor tries to place banner ads where they will be read by those the advertisers want to reach, rather than placed at random. News stories that will have an “ill” effect are avoided as best as possible. Often it is the position of the banner ad that attracts more response. This is at the sole discretion of the editor.

Banner ads may appear under the headlines at the choice of the editor, but are not guaranteed. An attempt is made to share them on a rotation basis with other banner advertisers.

Pricing Information
Ad Size
Pixels Size
6.5W X 1.5 H
468W X 180H
21 days
6.5W X 2.5 H
468W X 180H
21 days
6.5W X 4" H
468W X 288H
21 days
6.5"W x 5"H
468W X 360H
21 days

21 Days on the Leasing News web site ( holidays not included.)  They are placed by the editor in an appropriate position near a story that may be more compatible to their ad. They also appear under the headlines in each News Edition on a rotation basis instead of being placed by a news story.

  Banner Ad "contracts"

$595---six months $500 month/12 months $475
$750---six months $640 month/12 months $600
$395 Special--Three months in a row $1,200
($595/$750 monthly billing, $395 special: $1,200 in advance)
$850---six months $725/12 months $675

Combination discounts are further available with   Help Ad "contracts."

Two month, three month, six month and one year contracts are available with a discount. Ads for employment should be placed in the classified ad section, where it is possible to also appear at the top of the headlines.

Article: How Advertising works at Leasing News




Leasing 102

by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
“Offer an operating lease for accounting,
a tax lease for income tax”

When is Expensing better than Tax Depreciation?

This is a crazy year for leasing because everyone assumes that the stimulus package that allows business to take 50% of the equipment cost as depreciation, at once, and then apply the standard recovery percentages to the remaining 50% and/ or Revenue Ruling 179 that allows a full fair market depreciation if capital equipment purchases stay under the limit are so valuable that “no one” would want a standard Tax lease or operating lease for accounting where all they get is the lease payments as a deduction. Not so! What good is more write off if you are having a low income year? Many, many customers want to push expenses into next year or be able to control their income statement this year. This is possible if you offer them an operating lease for accounting and a tax lease for income tax. $1 leasing is a very limited product, but it does work nicely this year, but what about next year?

Lease payments that are grounded in the lessee’s needs for cash flow and expenses can be created on an irregular basis with small payments for this year and larger ones starting next year. This will accomplish two things, one, it will provide lower payments this year allowing the lessee to obtain new equipment at good prices and two, help increase your vendors sales. Also the customer can program the size of the payment that fits his needs to control some of his expenses in a poor economic year. By pushing payments into next year you will increase his deductions when the 50% bonus is eliminated.

Operating leases for GAAP allows the lessee to expense the lease payments “as paid” allowing for irregular terms if you have a solid reason for the irregular structure. Expense control has long been one of the major advantages for true leasing and we need to get back to understanding the customer’s needs instead of just reacting to their requests. Many customers do not understand what leasing can do for them and it must be presented for them to have any idea of what will actually do the best job for them based on their circumstances.
If you do not understand all of the ramifications of true leasing then get some education so you can be a true leasing professional. We have way too many $1 out salespeople out there with only 100% financing as a selling tool. True leasing has a lot of alternatives and you need to know all of them.

Structuring a true lease for the lessee will require a computer based software program but they are currently very reasonably priced. If you have never used one then call me and I will talk you through it so you can have a complete package when approaching a vendor or a customer.

Many have asked me how to price a tax lease if the funding source does not have a tax appetite. In many cases the actual advantage of the tax consequences are not a big issue if the lessee is trying to manage expenses. The Lessor may have to carry forward some of the advantages and therefore will not give any value to them. The real lowering of the lessee’s payment comes from the residual anyway. Residuals are necessary to lower the payments and separate you from $1 leases or loans. This will require investigation into the equipments use and value at termination. Plus as I have said before it will require good return language and standard maintenance requirements. Some vendors are willing to guarantee residuals to obtain good use equipment in the future and if you can show good documentation they feel protected and may provide higher residual assumptions for you.
It is also important to understand the Federal Income Tax recovery periods for depreciation benefits. Once in a while the recovery periods are longer that the term of the lease which makes the lease payment go up to maintain the lessor’s yield. This is easily seen in data processing equipment where the average lease is for 36 -42 months and the recovery period is 5.5 years.

I am happy to see true leasing making a comeback.

Mr. Terry Winders, CLP, has been a teacher, consultant, expert witness for the leasing industry for thirty years and can be reached at or 502-327-8666.
He invites your questions and queries.

Previous #102 Columns:



Direct Capital Closes New $100 Million Securitization Facility

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. – - Direct Capital Corporation announced that it has closed a new $100 million equipment lease-backed commercial paper conduit securitization transaction with Key National Finance and participating conduits and banks.

The announcement is significant given the recent credit freeze in the bank markets and the unique manner in which major financial institutions worked collaboratively with Direct Capital to close the facility. As a result of these innovative efforts, Direct Capital will be able to immediately help thousands of small– to medium-sized businesses access capital to purchase new and used equipment and technology.

“We are extremely pleased to secure additional growth capital in the form of debt financing in these challenging times,” said Christopher Broom, chairman of Direct Capital. “Access to attractive capital with competitive terms provides DCC a substantial competitive advantage to service new and existing vendor customers. The company is well positioned to capture meaningful market share. Furthermore, DCC is proud to establish new banking relationships with companies like Key National Finance, which has extensive knowledge and industry expertise.”
“The lease advisory and distribution services group has a solid history of providing structured financing and equipment securitization products, plus syndication and distribution capabilities,” said Michael J. Swartz, managing director of Key National Finance’s lease advisory and distribution group.

“Key National Finance is very pleased to add Direct Capital Corporation as a client via this securitization facility,” said Rian Emmett, director, Key National Finance’s lease advisory and distribution group. Just last month, Direct Capital announced the multi-year extension of a $100 million lease-backed commercial paper securitization through DZ Bank. In March, the company was recognized as the 6th largest independent leasing and finance company in the United States by the leasing industry trade magazine, The Monitor.

For more information about financing options from Direct Capital, call 800-999-9942 or

About Direct Capital
Established in 1993, Direct Capital provides specialty finance solutions, including capital equipment leasing, commercial loans, and merchant cash advances. Direct Capital markets its services through direct relationships with businesses and through partnerships with vendors, dealers, and manufacturers of capital equipment. Superb execution on its exceptional and unique direct service delivery model is the cornerstone of Direct Capital's success in an increasingly commoditized financial services industry. Direct Capital is headquartered in Portsmouth, NH and operates offices in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit and New London, NH.

About Key National Finance
Key National Finance is the umbrella organization for KeyCorp’s (NYSE: KEY) national businesses and includes lease advisory and distribution services, equipment finance, education resources and auto finance. Lease advisory and distribution services provides structured financing and equipment securitization products plus syndication and distribution capabilities. Equipment finance professionals meet the equipment leasing and financing needs of businesses of all sizes and provide global equipment manufacturers, distributors and resellers with financing options for their clients. Education resources provides federal education loans, payment plans and advice for students and their parents. The auto finance group finances dealer inventories of automobiles. Key National Finance’s four businesses total nearly $23 billion in managed assets and nearly 1,200 employees.
For more information, visit








Leasing Industry Help Wanted

Credit Management/Funding Operations

Vice President
Credit Manager/Funding Operations

Hands-on, professional and personable senior management team member to work with small ticket leases from the third party broker marketplace. Click here for more information.

About the company: Founded in 1982, we originate all of our leases through an independent network of lease brokers

Credit Syndicator / Funding Specialist


Credit Syndicator

Full time opening for the right team player with heavy structured transaction experience.  Click here for description.

Funding Specialist

Full time opening for the right team player with heavy structured transaction experience.  Click here for description.


Experienced Sales Person
Orange County, California

Commission 40-65%, full back office, Marketing Tools, vendor programs, credit analyst available.

Barbara Griffith  714-573-9804

About the Company: Southern California Leasing: Professional, Reputable, 17 year winning track record.

San Clemente, California

The iFinancial Group is looking for highly motivated individuals with experience originating equipment lease transactions .  We offer a relaxed work environment, provide leads and offer above industry standard commission. Call Todd Clark 888-852-5155 x223

Ten years providing financing nationwide

"Senior Leasing/Commercial Account Executives

Proven history of closed deals & an established book of business?
Want superior support & great income opportunity?
Email resume to

About the Company: CapNet Financial Services, Inc has been a leader in direct lease originations for 10 years. Our mission is to provide American business with fast, innovative, financing solutions to grow their companies and exceed their goals."

Burbank, California

Experienced salesperson for well-established/experienced company, very active in leasing industry, nationwide.

Call Jeff Rudin (888) 44QUAIL x14 or email :

About the company: Quail Equipment Leasing 17 years in business with the ability to develop specialized programs for vendors and unique industries: $10K to $24MM.


Like selling vendor programs and large transactions?
Enjoy international financing programs?
Prefer the advantages of a commission only environment with the security of health and welfare benefits?

CLICK HERE to find out how to have fun again.

Please see our Job Wanted section for possible new employees.



Bank Beat---Some good news this week

First, no bank failures. Second, none of April 2009 List of Banks Examined by the FDIC for CRA Compliance has a "NI is Needs to Improve; and SN is Substantial Non-compliance." In fact,
there were several O, for "outstanding:

Bank of Botetourt, Buchanan, VA
Citibank (Banamex USA) Los Angeles, CA
Citizens Bank, Hartsville, TN
Community State Bank, Grove,WI
First Bank and Trust, New Orleans, LA
First Bank, Lexington, TN
Citibank (Banamex USA), Los Angeles, CA

Add to the good news that the Bank of America Corp.’s board authorized $713 million in dividend payments to the U.S. federal government under the Troubled Asset Relief Program. BoA put
its money where its mouth was and paid its first dividends totaling $402 million to the Treasury Department in February as part of its commitment to pay back taxpayers as quickly as possible.

In addition, Signature Bank of New York repaid Treasury a total $120 million in warrants, Old National Bancorp of Indiana repaid $100 million in warrants, Iberiabank Corporation of Louisiana repaid $90 million in warrants, Bank of Marin, Bancorp of California repaid $28 million in warrants, and Centra Financial Holdings of West Virginia repaid $15 million in preferred stock.

Other banks, including JPMorgan Chase & Co., US Bancorp, Wells Fargo, have indicated they will be repaying the funds, including many smaller banks. It seems many of the banks were pushed into TARP funds by the former Treasury secretary and current FDIC chairman, now taking a different posture. It is obvious they don’t want the government on their board of directors.

Add also to the good news, FASB changing the accounting-rule to now allows banks with impaired financial securities to move billions of dollars in losses off of their income statements, which will benefit their regulatory capital calculations. The rule revision addresses how companies account for assets whose market value has fallen below the reported balance-sheet value, but it doesn't change the accounting treatment with regard to fair-value measurement. It will make a little more work for the accountants, but it should help the “mark to market” situation.



Wednesday Lunch Member/Non-Member Atlanta, GA

Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Hosted by Doug Welch and Alan Zeppenfeld

Ansley Golf Club
Atlanta, GA
Cost: $20 Members/ Non-Members



Leasing News Top Stories---March 30--April 3

Here are the top ten stories opened by readers:

(1) Three more leasing companies to bite the dust

(2) Paul A. Larkins New Head of GE Capital (April Fools)

(3) Bernie Boettigheimer Buys Back Pioneer plus!!!
(April Fools)

(4) Court Square Closing Down?

(5) Brad Peterson introduces Working Capital Loans

(6) Steve Reid and Jennifer Aniston Engaged (April Fools)

(7) April Fool's Edition Explained
by Christopher Menkin

(8) Complaint Bulletin Board

(9) (Tie)
Bank Beat--One More Bank Failure: Georgia, again!!!

(9) (Tie)
Summit Equipment and Leasing, Inc. owes $41,594.29

(10) (Tie)
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Compensation Plans in Hard Times (Part Two)

(10) (Tie)
Marlin President breaks his leg (April Fools)



Credit Card Companies gear up for Unemployment

According to SNL Financial, JP Morgan Chase at "Investor's Day, stated " an unemployment rate of 8%, Chase said, net charge-offs would be about 8% for the fourth quarter. At a rate of 9%, charge-offs would increase to between 9% and 9.5%. A 10% unemployment rate would suggest charge-offs of between 10% and 10.5%."

Chase officials said they are not in the business of predicting future unemployment rates, but added that they are "prepared" for 9% unemployment by year-end.

Moody's on April 2 downgraded its holding-company senior debt rating for Capital One to Baa1 from A3 and assigned a negative outlook, among other actions. Moody’s reported charge-off rates hit 8.82% in February, marking the highest level ever reached on the Moody's Credit Card Index in its 20-year history. The percentage of delinquent borrowers rose to 6.14% in February, representing a 17-year high.

SNL Financial reports: "Figures reported April 3 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that the national unemployment rate reached 8.5% in March, up from 8.1% in February and closing in on the targets that several card issuers established for later in 2009. An unemployment rate in the double digits now seems to be more of a probability than an outside possibility, given that metric's standing as a lagging indicator of macroeconomic conditions, as conditions in the labor market continues to worsen."



Mortgage Credit Quality Declines 4th Quarter, 2008

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision today jointly released their quarterly report on first lien mortgage performance for the fourth quarter of 2008. The report covers mortgages serviced by nine large banks and four thrifts, constituting approximately two-thirds of all outstanding mortgages in the United States.

The report showed that credit quality continued to decline in the fourth quarter of 2008. At the end of the year, just under 90 percent of mortgages were performing, compared with 93 percent at the end of September 2008.

The reasons for high re-default rates are not clear. As noted in the previous quarter’s report, high re-defaults could be the result of a worsening economy, excessive borrower leverage, or poor initial underwriting.

Based on the results of the report, the OCC and OTS directed each of the banks and thrifts that provide data for the Mortgage Metrics report to assess their 2008 loan modifications, especially those that increased monthly payments or left them unchanged, to ensure that criteria applied to those loans, and to loans modified in the future, result in modifications that are affordable and sustainable.

Full Press Release here:


#### Press Release ##############################

News Briefs----

Who gets the “Top Pay” in the United States

Geithner Says Government Would Remove Bank Chiefs if Needed

Small business lending drops 57%

Consumers fall behind on loans at record rate

Airbus May Fail to Meet Its Goal for A380 Deliveries

Airlines flying aircraft less. Aircraft valuation black hole looms?

Southwest in sale-leaseback of planes

Bank bailout cost nearly doubles, agency says

I.B.M. Withdraws $7 Billion Offer for Sun Microsystems

Disney announces 1,900 job cuts

MGM hires bank to sell casino assets

Underwood wins country music entertainer of the year



You May have Missed---

Harley motorcycle pulls a hearse for special funerals



Sports Briefs----

Sharks sets a franchise record with its 52nd victory, a 3-2 win over the Ducks

Jeff Garcia Negotiating with Raiders

Oakland Police silence Raider Nation

Incredible shrinking payroll: 14 MLB teams cut back

Vick will end sentence in luxury

Brian Dawkins to give tickets to fired Eagles employee



California Nuts Briefs---

Californians slam brakes on gas use

Diane Keaton's Beverly Hills home for sale for $11,995,000,0,1602992.story



“Gimme that Wine”

Mature your palate this spring in Napa Valley

First major women and wine survey overturns perceptions

Oregon Area wine sales holding steady despite economic woe

Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Winery Atlas\
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Today's Top Event in History

1846-- Dred Scott claims freedom. Slave Scott files a declaration according to which, two days earlier, his owner had "beat, bruised, and ill-treated him" and imprisoned him for twelve hours. Scott adds that he claims to be a free man by virtue of his past residence in free territories. March of 1857, Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney -- a staunch supporter of slavery -- wrote the "majority opinion" for the court. It stated that because Scott was black, he was not a citizen and therefore had no right to sue. The decision also declared the Missouri Compromise of 1820, legislation which restricted slavery in certain territories, unconstitutional. While the decision was well-received by slaveholders in the South, many northerners were outraged. The decision greatly influenced the nomination of Abraham Lincoln to the Republican Party and his subsequent election, which in turn led to the South's secession from the Union. Peter Blow's sons, childhood friends of Scott, had helped pay Scott's legal fees through the years. After the Supreme Court's decision, the former master's sons purchased Scott and his wife and set them free. Dred Scott died nine months later.


This Day in American History

    6-BC--Many Biblical scholars believe this date to be the actual date of the historical birth of Jesus Christ. The actual day of the month has never been declared, although many believe it is the 6th day of April, due to the many changes in what we now have as the present day calendar. Most scholars believe the correct year is 6BC. This is also the week of Jewish Passover. It should also be noted the Bible (John 18:28; 19:31) indicates that Christ was crucified on the eve of a Passover, and we know that it was sometime around the year AD 30. The Roman Catholic Church has December 25 and that is the accepted tradition, based primarily with many customs from non-Christian festival( Roman Saturnalia, Mithraic sun’s birthday, Teutonic Yule, Druidic and other winter solstice rites.)The Greek Orthodox Church and other orthodox churches celebrate on January 7 based on the old calendar ( Julian.)
    610 - Lailat-ul Qadar: The night that the Koran descended to Earth. Muhammad is believed by his followers to have had a vision of Gabriel. The angel told him to recite in the name of God. Other visions are supposed to have Gabriel lead Muhammad to heaven to meet God, and to Jerusalem to meet Abraham, Moses and Jesus. These visions convinced Mohammad that he was a messenger of God.
    1712-The first rebellion of African-American slaves in a colony occurred in New York City. Six whites were killed. The militia was called out to suppress the revolt. Twenty-one African-American salves ( some accounts say 12 ) were executed by hanging, and six committed suicide. Three decades later, in 1741, a rash of suspicious fires caused fears of another slave rebellion to sweep the city. Although no conclusive evidence of a slave conspiracy were uncovered, several slaves were coerced into confessing and implicating others. By the time the hysteria died down, thirty-one slaves and four whites had been hanged.
In the years after the American Revolution, the state of New York enacted legislation to gradually emancipate its slaves. By the first decade of the nineteenth century, the institution of slavery had ceased to exist in New York and most other northern states.
    1830- James Augustine Healy, the first black Roman Catholic bishop in America, was born to an Irish planter and a slave on a plantation near Macon, Georgia.
    1735- The first Moravians from Europe arrived in America. Invited by colonial governor James Oglethorpe, ten males of the "Unitas Fratrum" landed in Savannah, Georgia after sailing from England in February.
    1777-The first Marine officer killed in service was John Fitzpatrick, a second lieutenant in the Continental Marines, who was killed when the Alfred, a 24-gun frigate under command of Captain Samuel Nicholas, was attached off Block Island, RI, by the 20-gun H.M.S. Glasgow.
    1786-Birthday of Sacagawea (also Sacajawea), American explorer, a legend as the reason of the success of the famous Lewis and Clark expedition.
    1830- Under the leadership of Joseph Smith, Jr. , The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was founded with six members in a log cabin at Fayette, NY. The event occurred in the home of Peter Whitmer. Joseph Smith, the founder of the church, declared that an angel of God had shown him gold plates of which was engraved a divine scripture, The Book of Mormon, which he has translated. The official title of the Mormon Church is the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints.
    1846-- Dred Scott claims freedom. Slave Scott files a declaration according to which, two days earlier, his owner had "beat, bruised, and ill-treated him" and imprisoned him for twelve hours. Scott adds that he claims to be a free man by virtue of his past residence in free territories.March of 1857, Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney -- a staunch supporter of slavery -- wrote the "majority opinion" for the court. It stated that because Scott was black, he was not a citizen and therefore had no right to sue. The decision also declared the Missouri Compromise of 1820, legislation which restricted slavery in certain territories, unconstitutional. While the decision was well-received by slaveholders in the South, many northerners were outraged. The decision greatly influenced the nomination of Abraham Lincoln to the Republican Party and his subsequent election, which in turn led to the South's secession from the Union.
Peter Blow's sons, childhood friends of Scott, had helped pay Scott's legal fees through the years. After the Supreme Court's decision, the former master's sons purchased Scott and his wife and set them free. Dred Scott died nine months later.
    1853-The City of Portland, Oregon, known as the “City of Roses” established.
    1862-Battle of Shiloh. General Ulysses S. Grant’ s Union forces at Shiloh, or Pittsburgh Landing, TN, were attack by a large force under General Albert Sidney Johnston. After heavy fighting, the first day of the battle ended without a conclusive victory for either side. Grant was reinforced before the Confederates on the second day and Confederate General Beauregard, in command after Johnston’s death the previous day, ordered a retreat back to Orinth, MS, leaving the Federal troops in a stronger position in Tennessee than before the battle. Losses on both sides totaled more than 23,000.
    1865--EDDY, SAMUEL E. Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 37th Massachusetts Infantry. Place and date: At Sailors Creek, Va., 6 April 1865. Entered service at: Chesterfield, Mass. Birth: Vermont. Date of issue: 10 September 1897. Citation: Saved the life of the adjutant of his regiment by voluntarily going beyond the line and there killing one of the enemy then in the act of firing upon the wounded officer. Was assailed by several of the enemy, run through the body with a bayonet, and pinned to the ground, but while so. situated he shot and killed his assailant.
    1865-- At the Battle of Little Sailer's Creek, one fourth of Lee's army is cut off by Union troops pursuing him to Appomattox.
    1866 ---Birthday of Joseph Lincoln Steffens, journalist and famous muckraker.
    1868 -Mormon church leader Brigham Young, 67, married his 27th and last wife, Anna Eliza, who wound up suing him for divorce.(In all, Brigham Young's wives bore him 47 children., and was married 27 times, according to a source considered by historians as “accurate;” however, others believe she was his 18th wife.) “ Eliza soon dropped from the role of ordinary wife to that of neglected wife; and finally, July 28, 1873, she sued Brigham for divorce, and demanded a substantial share of his fortune. It is necessary to pause here for a moment to repeat a caution given several times before. Ann Eliza Webb posed as Brigham's nineteenth wife, and custom has fixed that as her number. There is just as good warrant for calling her the twenty-ninth, or the hundred and nineteenth. At the time of her marriage there were known to be eighteen other women with whom Brigham had sustained or was sustaining marital relations. Careful search probably would have doubled the number, and not even Brigham could have told to hove many women he had been "sealed." The marriage ceremony was sufficient to cover cohabitation in every case; and no domestic census-taker could have drawn the line between the three sorts of spouses. Brigham’s answer to this divorce suit was a bit startling. He pleaded that there was no marriage between himself and the plaintiff which the laws of the United States recognized; and therefore, there was no occasion for divorce. Judge McKean was plainly embarrassed by the situation, yet quite as plainly determined to use it to the injury of the Mormon emperor. On February 25, 1875, McKean ordered Brigham to pay Ann Eliza $3,000 for attorney's fees and $500 per month alimony pending a final decision. Brigham's attorneys took an exception, and prepared to appeal to the supreme court of the territory. The delay thus occasioned did not suit judge McKean. On March 8, he cited Brigham to appear before him, and show cause why he should not be punished for contempt of court in not having paid the required money. Brigham appeared in court three days later, and after a short argument by his attorneys, was sentenced to pay a fine of $25 and to be confined one day in the penitentiary. He was taken to his home by the deputy marshal, and after dining and being supplied with some clothing, was driven to the jail. Here, he was locked for a short time in a cell, and then allowed to pass the night in a room opening off the warden's office. The following day, March 12, 1875, he walked out free, into the arms of a worshipping crowd who had assembled to do him homage.
    1882-Birthday of Rose Schneiderman, a pioneer in the battle to increase wages and improve working conditions for women. Rose Schneiderman was born at Saven, Poland, and her family immigrated to the US six years later. At age 16 she began factory work in New York City’s garment district and quickly became a union organizer. Opposed to the open-shop policy, which permitted nonunion members to work in a unionized shop, Schneiderman organized a 1913 strike of 25,000 women shirtwaist makers. She worked as an organize for the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGUW) and for the Women’s Trade Union League (WTUL), serving as president for more than 20 years. During the Great Depression President Roosevelt appointed her to his Labor Advisory Board---the only woman member Died August 11,1972, at New York, NY.
1883, Vernon Dalhart, the first singer of country songs to gain national attention, was born in Jefferson, Texas. Dalhart, whose real name was Marion Try Slaughter, was not really a country singer. He began his career singing pop songs and light opera selections. But it was when he turned to hillbilly songs in 1925 that Dalhart made music history. His recording of "The Prisoner's Song" and "The Wreck of the Old 97" was the biggest-selling non-Christmas hit of the pre- rock 'n' roll era. Dalhart recorded for more than 30 labels and under dozens of pseudonyms. He died on September 15th, 1948.
    1896- The first modern Olympics formally opened at Athens, Greece, after a 1,500 year hiatus. There were 311 competitors, all men, representing 13 nations. The very first race was the opening heat of the 100 meters, won by Francis Lande of the US. He finished fourth in the final won by another American, Thomas Burke. The first Olympics were funded by the sale of commemorative stamps and medals and by a gift of one million drachmas from George Averoff, an architect.
    1900-Jim Jeffries, 250 pounds, knocked out Jack Finnegan, 180 pounds, in 55 seconds of the first round at Detroit, MI, to win the heavyweight boxing championship title. It is the first, and only bout, won in under one minute.
    1904- The Fidelity Contract Company, Rochester, New York, became the first installment finance company to purchase installment contracts from retail dealers. They eventually became the Bankers Commercial Corporation of New York City.
    1907 - The War Developement has decided to retain the military prison at Alcatraz and not transfer it, as it was proposed, to Angel Island or the Presidio. Officials contend that Alcatraz affords the best opportunity for taking care of prisioners and preventing their escape. The battalion consisting of companies E, F, G and H, 22nd Infantry, will withdraw fro mthe Island, and permanent prison guard will be substituted.
    1909- The St. Canadian credit union of Massachusetts, NH, was charged with the help of Alphonese Desjardins, Canadian credit union pioneer, and became the first credit union in the United States.
    1909- Robert E. Peary reached the North Pole after several failed attempts. The team consisted of Peary, leader of the expedition: Matthew A. l-Jenson, a black man who had served with Peary since 1886 as ship’s cook, carpenter and blacksmith, and then as Pear/s co-explorer and valuable assistant and four Eskimo guides—Coquesh, Ootah, Eginwah and Seegloo. They sailed July 17, 1908, on the ship Roosevelt, wintering on Ellesmere Island. After a grueling trek with dwindling food supplies, Henson and two of the Eskimos were first to reach the Pole. An exhausted Peary arrived 45 minutes later and confirmed their location. Dr. Frederick A. Cook, surgeon on an earlier expedition with Peary, claimed to have reached the Pole first, but that could not be substantiated and the National Geographic Society credited the Peary expedition.
    1917-The US Enters World War I, which began in 1914. 1917. Two days after the US Senate voted eighty-two to six to declare war against Germany, the US House of Representatives endorses the declaration by a vote of 373 to fifty, and the US enters World War I. Four days earlier, President Woodrow Wilson [28 Dec 1856 – 03 Feb 1924], who initially sought a peaceful resolution to the war in Europe, appeared before a joint session of Congress and urged a declaration of war, citing Germany's unrestricted submarine warfare against US vessels traveling in the Atlantic.T he first US “Doughboys” landed in France June 27, 1917.
    1918-bassist Red Callendar born Richmond, VA.
    1924-Tenor Sax player Charlie Rouse born, Washington, DC
    1927-Baritone sax player Gerry Mulligan born at New York, NY. He performed with many great jazz musicians including Miles Davis, Dave Brubeck, Chet Baker and Duke Ellington, and is credited with helping create the cool-jazz movement with Miles Davis. Mulligan died Jan 20, 1996, at Darien, CT.
    1928-Birthtday of James Watson, discoverer (with Francis Crick) of the structure of DNA, born Chicago, IL
    1929-Birthday of pianist, composer, conductor Andre Previn, born Berlin, Germany.
    1931-Nine black youths went on trial at Scottsboro, AL, accused of raping two white women on a freight train. All were convicted in a hasty trial, but by 1950 were free by parole, appeal or escape.
    1936 - a massive pair of tornadoes, rated F4 on the Fujita scale, killed 203 persons, injured 1600, and caused over 13 million dollars damage in Gainsville, Georgia. The business district of the town was almost entirely destroyed as the tornado left a 4 block wide path of destruction in its wake. The largest death toll in one building in US history from a single tornado occurred when then Cooper Pants factory collapsed and caught fire. 70 people were killed.
    1937-guitarist/song writer Merle Haggard born Bakersfield, CA.
    1938—Teflon invented. Polytetraflouroethylesne reside was invented by Roy J. Plunkett while he was employed by E.I. Du Point de Nemours & Co. Commonly known as Teflon, it revolutionized the cookware industry. The substance or something similar coat three-quarters of the pots and pans in America at the time of Plunkett’s death in 1994.
    1939-Harry James records “Two O’Clock Jump” Brunswick 8337.
    1940—Duke Ellington Band records, “Jack the Bear, “ “KoKo,”
    1944-Michelle Phillips of the Mamas and Papas was born in Long Beach, California. She married John Phillips, leader of the Mamas and Papas. The group's first album in 1965 yielded three hit singles - "Monday, Monday," "California Dreamin"' and "I Call Your Name." After several more albums in the mid-'60s, the group broke up. A new lineup of The Mamas and Papas began touring in the '80s, with MacKenzie Phillips, John's daughter, replacing Michelle Phillips and Spanky MacFarlane replacing the deceased Cass Elliot.
    1945-Two US destroyers, two ammunition ships and a tank-landing ship were sunk off the coast Of Okinawa when the Japanese Air Force launched 355 kamikaze (suicide) pilots against the Allied fleet in Operation Floating Chrysanthemum.
    1947-The American Theatre Wing bestowed the first annual Tony awards for distinguished service to the theater.
    1952---Top Hits
Wheel of Fortune - Kay Starr
Anytime - Eddie Fisher
Please, Mr. Sun - Johnnie Ray
(When You Feel like You’re in Love) Don’t Just Stand There - Carl Smith
    1953-Birthday or guitarist/bassist Jerome Harris, Flushing, NY
    1954- TV Dinner is 1st put on sale by Swanson & Sons.
    1956- Paramount Pictures signed Elvis Presley to a three-picture contract only five days after his first screen test. The test was at the suggestion of producer Hal Wallis who had seen Presley on the Dorsey Brothers' TV show. Elvis was to be paid $100,000 for his first movie, $150,000 for the second and $200,000 for the third.
    1956 - Capitol Tower, the home of Capitol Records in Hollywood, CA, was dedicated. The building was the first circular office tower designed in America. It is 13 stories tall and 92 feet in diameter. At night, a light at the tip of the tower blinks the letters "H-O-L-L-Y-W-O-O-D" in Morse Code.
    1956--The Beach Boys record "California Girls", which will reach number three in the US by August.
    1957-Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" is released.
    1957-The Toronto quartet, The Diamonds, peak at #2 on the Billboard chart with "Little Darlin'".
    1958 - Arnold Palmer won his first major pro golf tournament by capturing the Masters in Augusta, GA (and the coveted green jacket). Palmer defeated defending champion Dough Ford for the honor. Palmer was 28 years old and had been a pro since 1954 after he won the National Amateur title.
    1959 - Hal Holbrook opened in an off-Broadway, critically acclaimed, presentation of "Mark Twain Tonight". Quotes include: “It is best to read the weather forecast, before we pray for rain.”; “The more things are forbidden, the more popular they become.”; “Modesty died when clothes were born.”; “Be good and you will be lonesome.”; and “Familiarity breeds contempt - and children.”
    1959--Bruce Johnston joins the Beach Boys as permanent replacement for Brian Wilson. My high school friend and piano player for my band often called on me as a replacement for "gigs" he got for groups. He is perhaps best known as the composer and songwriter of "I write the songs, " made famous by Barry Manilow.
    1959 - America’s funny men, Bob Hope, Jerry Lewis and Mort Sahl, and comedic actor Tony Randall, along with the Great Britain’s outstanding actors, David Niven and Laurence Olivier, entertained the guests of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science at the 31st Annual Academy Awards ceremony. The audience filled the RKO Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles with applause for the Best Picture of 1958: "Gigi" (Arthur Freed, producer). "Gigi" also won Oscars for Best Director Vincente Minnelli; for Frederick Loewe’s (music), and Alan Jay Lerner’s (lyrics) for the Song, "Gigi"; for Best Music/ Scoring of a Musical Picture (André Previn); for the Best Writing/Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium (Alan Jay Lerner); for Best Cinematography/Color (Joseph Ruttenberg); for Best Art Direction/Set Decoration/Black-and-White or Color (William A. Horning, E. Preston Ames, Henry Grace, F. Keogh Gleason); for Best Costume Design/Black-and-White or Color (Cecil Beaton); and for Best Film Editing (Adrienne Fazan). One would think there weren’t any awards leftover for any other movies. But, the Best Actor award went to David Niven for "Separate Tables" as did the Best Supporting Actress Oscar (Wendy Hiller). Susan Hayward was honored for her Best Actress role in "I Want to Live!" and Best Supporting Actor was Burl Ives in "The Big Country". Other notable movies of 1958 ... some award winners, some not ... "Auntie Mame", "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof", "The Old Man and the Sea", "Some Came Running", "Teacher’s Pet", "South Pacific", "The Young Lions", "Bell, Book and Candle", "Vertigo", "Damn Yankees", "Marjorie Morningstar", and "The Defiant Ones".
    1959-Fabian's "Turn Me Loose" enters the Billboard Pop chart, where it will eventually reach number 9
    1960---Top Hits
The Theme from "A Summer Place" - Percy Faith
Puppy Love - Paul Anka
Sink the Bismarck - Johnny Horton
He’ll Have to Go - Jim Reeves
    1968 -Oakland Police raid the Black Panthers. Eldridge Cleaver arrested with a bullet-shattered leg. Bobby Hutton shot and killed.
    1968---Top Hits
(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay - Otis Redding
Young Girl - The Union Gap
La - La - Means I Love You - The Delfonics
How Long Will My Baby Be Gone - Buck Owens
    1969-Aum, Flying Burrito Brothers and the Grateful Dead Concert at the San Francisco Avalon Ballroom
    1971- Willie Mays, a month shy of his fortieth birthday, homers on Opening Day and will hit home runs in the next three games to tie a major league record.
    1971 - Rolling Stone Records formed to promote The Rolling Stones' hits. The Stones' trademark, the lips logo, began seeing wide use. "Brown Sugar" was the Rolling Stones' first on the new label, followed by "Wild Horses", "Tumbling Dice" and Bill Gates’ favorite song, "Start Me Up".
    1971-The Rolling Stones release "Brown Sugar", the first single on their own label, Rolling Stones Records, which introduces the infamous licking-tongue-and-lips logo designed by John Pasche.
    1973-Designated Hitter Introduced: following a rules change approved in January, Ron Blomber of the New York Yankees became the first designated hitting in the American League in their Opening Day game against the Boston Red Sox. Blomberg came to bat for the first time with the bases loaded in the first inning and walked. The Red Sox won, 15-5.
    1973- On Opening Day at Three Rivers Stadium in front of record crowd of 51,695, the Pirates retire Roberto Clemente's uniform number 21 posthumously. The Pittsburgh right fielder died in a plane. crash on New Year's Eve attempting to bring relief aid to earthquake- stricken Managua, Nicaragua.
    1973-The Stylistics received a Gold record for their hit, "Break Up to Make Up".
    1975 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: ``Philadelphia Freedom,'' Elton John.
    1976---Top Hits
Disco Lady - Johnnie Taylor
Let Your Love Flow - Bellamy Brothers
Sweet Thing - Rufus featuring Chaka Khan
You’ll Lose a Good Thing - Freddy Fender
    1977-The Seattle Marines, an American League expansion team, made their regular season debut, losing to the California Angeles, 7-0, at the Seattle Kingdome. Seattle’s previous AL team, the Pilots, played on the 1969 season before moving to Milwaukee and becoming the Brewers. The Mariners won their first AL West division title in 1995.
    1977 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: ``Dancing Queen,'' Abba. This is the only No. 1 song by the international phenomenon.
    1978-President Jimmy Carter nominated the first US marine female general, Margaret Ann Brewer. She was sworn in on May 11, 1978, as director of the division for information.
    1979-The punk/new wave group Blondie has its first big hit in the U.S. with "Heart of Glass." The tune goes platinum on this date, two months after it hit Number One.
    1981- “Private Benjamin “premiered on television, modeled after the Goldie Hawn movie of the same name.
    1982- the "Great Blizzard of April '82" struck New England, New York and Pennsylvania and dumped 1 to 2 feet of snow. Many places had their greatest April snowstorm ever. Winds frequently gusted to 70 and 80 mph. There was an exceptionally high frequency of simultaneous thunderstorms and heavy snow with numerous lightning strikes reported. Record cold poured in the wake of the storm and many spots were 25 degrees colder than normal the day after the storm. The freak heavy spring snow storm brings subfreezing temperatures across the northeast and Midwest and causes the postponement of home openers for the Yankees, Tigers, White Sox, Brewers, Indians, Phillies and Pirates.
    1984---Top Hits
Footloose - Kenny Loggins
Here Comes the Rain Again - Eurythmics
Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now) - Phil Collins
Let’s Stop Talkin’ About It - Janie Fricke
    1985 - Country musical group, Alabama went five-for-five as their album, "40 Hour Week", took the top spot on the "Billboard" country chart. For each of the past five years, the group had a number one album. The quartet's popularity continues today. Three of the four are cousins from Fort Payne, Alabama.
    1988 - a powerful storm produced wind gusts to 75 mph in the Chicago area and wind gusts to 92 mph at Goshen, Indiana. The high winds created 25 foot waves on Lake Michigan.
    1989- Dodger hurler Orel Hershiser's scoreless-inning streak ends at 59 in the first inning of a 4-3 loss to the Reds.
    1989 - unseasonably hot weather prevailed in California. Afternoon highs of 91 degrees in downtown San Francisco, 93 degrees at San Jose, 103 degrees at Santa Maria, 104 degrees at Riverside, and 106 degrees in downtown Los Angeles established records for the month of April.
    1992-“Barney and Friends” premiere on TV. Although most adults find it hopelessly saccharine, this PBS program is hugely popular with preschoolers. Purple dinosaur Barney, his pal, dinosaur Baby Bop and a multi-ethnic group of children sing, play games and learn simple lessons about getting along with one another. "Bedtime with Barney" was a 1994 prime-time special.
    1996-The First Korean Victory in baseball. Pitching in relief, Chan Ho Park of the Los Angeles Dodgers became the first Korean to win a major league baseball game. Park pitched four scoreless innings against the Chicago Cubs, allowed three hits and struck out four. The Dodgers won, 3-1
    1996-Major League Soccer Debuts: Trying to capitalize on the momentum of the 1995 World Cup, held in the US, Major League Soccer, a new American professional league made its debut. The San Jose Clash defeated DC United, 1-0, on a goal by Erick Wyanalda. The game was played in San Jose before a capacity crowd of 31,683.
    1998-The Dow-Jones Index of 30 major industrial stocks topped the 9,000 mark for the first time.
    1999 - Microsoft's digital download technology, MS Audio 4.0, is unveiled.
    2000-- Elian's dad comes to the US.After months of keeping Juan Miguel Gonzalez in Cuba for a successful propaganda campaign, dictator Fidel Castro correctly decides that now his propaganda is best served by sending the man to the US, not to go to Miami to see his son, but to attract more media attention for some more weeks before at last bringing home the 6-year-old survivor of the shipwreck that claimed the life of his mother, who was fleeing Cuba in hopes of a better life in the United States.
    2003 - Country star Shania Twain picks up the Artist of the Year Award along with the Fan Choice Award at the soldout 32nd annual Juno Awards, held in Ottawa and televised live nationally. The two awards were added to her Country Recording of the Year nod, given out the day before.



Baseball Poem

Hammerin' Hank

    by D. Roger Martin ©

Published: 70 on the 70's (1979)

You did it, Henry.
You took The Babe's untouchable record
and stuffed it in your pocket.
Not bad for a gangling
black kid from Mobile.
The TV cameras were set to roll,
the reporters were poised
and the stage was set
with you and Al Downing
in the multi-million dollar spotlight.
Your teammate, Tom House,
caught the home run ball in the bullpen,
which was good economics.
That could have been
and expensive ball to buy back.
"A black Babe Ruth," they said you were.
Now it's your record
that stands casting its shadow-
a distant target
for future sharpshooters,
probably as yet, unborn.
And doesn't it make you wonder, Henry,
if things have really changed
since Jackie Robinson
courageously showed the world
there was another color of man
who could play this game.
Will any of us live long enough
to hear some wise scribe say,
"Here's a kid who
really has a chance to be
a white Henry Aaron."




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