Historical Political Events for December 18

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Year Event
1787 New Jersey joins the Union.
1865 The 13th Amendment, making slavery illegal, is ratified by the states. Somehow, the first "Thirteenth Amendment" went missing.
1996 ETHANOL tax break extended by Congress. The subsidy costs consumers an estimated $770 million a year, and is particularly profitable for agribusiness giant Archer-Daniels-Midland. The company gave nearly $750,000 in PAC and soft money contributions. "Most prominent recipient of corporate welfare in recent U.S. history".
1997 The New England Journal of Medicine reports today that at least half the drugs donated to Bosnia and Herzegovina during the war, many of them from U.S. companies, were useless and even dangerous, apparently donated largely for the benefit of the company and not the recipients. Not only were 17,000 tons of drugs useless (spoiled, out of date, inappropriate) and not only did most or all of the companies get charitable tax deductions in their own countries, but disposal costs of about $2,000 a ton also fell to the World Health Organization.
1998 The House of Representatives starts impeachment proceedings against President Clinton (D).
1999 The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) attempted to assassinate Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga.Twenty-one people were killed, with over 100 injured. Minutes later a second blast occurred at a United National Party rally. Twelve people were killed from the second bombing, with over 70 injured.
2011 Kim Jong-il, North Korean dictator, dies.
and . . .
Quote of
the Day
Two months after the government recommended that scarce flu shots be reserved for people most at risk, health officials are now worried that tens of thousands of doses could go to waste, and they are considering easing the restrictions.
    — DANIEL YEE, Associated Press, 12/16/04 [Solution is obvious: Send the expired stuff to Iraq and get that tax write-off!]
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