Mitt Romney’s infamous “47 percent” quote

      On May 17, 2012, Republican presidential candidate, Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah), said something that was later cited as one of the factors that caused him to lose the election…

“The shot heard round the world”

The famous phrase “The shot heard round the world” was coined by American essayist, lecturer and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) in 1837. It’s the last line in the first…

“Power without responsibility – the prerogative of the harlot throughout the ages.”

In the decades before World War II, Stanley Baldwin was one of the most powerful politicians in the United Kingdom. He was the leader of Britain’s Conservative Party from 1923…

March 4th: a good day for famous presidential quotes – until 1933…

The date for the United States presidential inauguration was not specified in the original U.S. Constitution. In 1788, the Continental Congress set Inauguration Day as March 4. Then, in 1933,…

Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address – and Lord Buckley’s “hip translation” . . .

On November 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln gave a brief speech in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania at the dedication of a cemetery for the Union soldiers who had died in that bloody…

The genesis of “the Almighty Dollar” – from Genesis to Washington Irving…

The word almighty, used in connection with God, appears 57 times in the King James Version of the Bible. Starting in the Book of Genesis, God is variously referred to…

“O Liberty! What crimes are committed in thy name!”

In 1781, a young French woman named Marie-Jeanne Philippon married wealthy businessman Jean-Marie Roland, thus becoming known as Madame Roland. Madame Roland and her husband were early supporters of the…

As Maine goes, so goes: (a) the nation (b) Vermont . . .

In the November 1936 presidential election, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was reelected for a second term in a landslide victory over his Republican opponent, Kansas Governor Alf Landon. Roosevelt received…

“Facts are stubborn things…”

In the years leading up to the start of the Revolutionary War in 1775, the rebel-rousing Sons of Liberty used an engraving of what they called “The Boston Massacre” to…

The origins of “V for Victory!”

Almost everyone is familiar with the phrase “V for Victory” and the two-fingered V-for-victory hand gesture popularized by Winston Churchill during World War II. But few people today are aware of…