The Moron's Daily Briefing

Jul. 18 - It's Hunter S. Thompson's birthday today. He's still alive (at 63), armed, and dangerous. Dr Thompson founded the Gonzo school of journalism in the 1970s; graduates from that school can today be seen every night on cable news.

Dr Thompson inspired the character "Uncle Duke" in the comic strip Doonesbury, by former Canadian Prime Minister Gary Trudeau. ("Uncle Duke" first appeared in Doonesbury on July 8, 1974.) Several movies have been made about his life and work; he is perhaps the only American journalist to have been played on-screen by both Bill Murray and Johnny Depp.

Less colorful figures born today include John Glenn (1921), Nelson Mandela (1918), Harriet Nelson (1914), Richard "Red" Skelton (1913), and Hume Cronyn (1911), all of whom are interesting enough but none of whom has ever confessed to dropping acid at a political convention.

It's Constitution Day in Uruguay.

It' also the seventy-seventh anniversary of the 1925 publication of Adolf Hitler's best-selling political memoir, "Mein Kampf" (or, in English, "I'm Crazy and I'm Gonna Kill You"). The book remains extremely popular with genocidal sociopaths and is therefore experiencing a renaissance of sales.

On this date in 64 A.D., most of imperial Rome was burned to the ground because Emperor Nero had been playing the fiddle. This resulted in the persecution of Christians, many of whom were believed to have encouraged him.

2002, The Moron's Almanac™

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