The reading list
“Adolf Hitler's rambling magnum opus, 'Mein Kampf' ('My Struggle'), is considered a blueprint of the radical nationalist, pungently anti-Semitic vision that he would put into practice when the Nazis captured power in Germany, in 1933. It reflects his thinking so accurately that one German historian describes the book as 'direct access to Hitler's brain.'
“In fact, the book's contents were considered potent and infectious enough that the postwar administration in Allied-occupied Germany banned its publication, a prohibition that German authorities maintained, and which is to remain in place until the end of 2015, when the copyright expires. What happens then is the object of intense discussion and soul-searching in Germany, where, 67 years after the war's end, freedom of speech is still curtailed when it promotes Nazi ideology.
“… 'The prohibition was completely justified at the time,' says Hajo Funke, a political scientist emeritus at Berlin's Free University. 'Both the American and German authorities were rightly worried that it could attract a cult following. In addition to this, there were much tougher prohibitions aimed at a population that had just undergone 12 years of fierce Nazi propaganda and still had those thoughts in their heads. At the time, there were broad networks of active former Nazis, including ex-SS officers.'
“… Most observers feel that Germans have long possessed the political sophistication to have 'Mein Kampf' readily available in bookstores, and that the ban has outlived its purpose.”
– From “Defusing 'Mein Kampf' ” at chronicle.com
How do cats sweat?
Wisdom of the ages
“Loyalty to a petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.” – Mark Twain
“If you want a president who will make things better in the African-American community, you are looking at him.” – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, addressing a skeptical NAACP crowd at the group's annual convention.
They don't have sweat glands – they sweat only through their paws.
vamp (vamp), v. – to concoct or invent something; to give a new appearance by adding a patch or piece, as in: “The editorial writer knew the politician would think he was vamping his reputation even though the editorial was the absolute truth.” From the Middle French avant-pie, “forefoot.”
Today in history
On this date in 1934, The New York Times declared that Babe Ruth's record of 700 home runs would “stand for all time”; oops.
Now you know
One ton of grapes makes about 60 cases of wine, or 720 bottles. One bottle of wine contains about 2.8 pounds of grapes.