Historical Political Events for April 17

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Year Event
1492 Queen Isabella I of Spain contracts to finance a voyage of discovery headed by Christopher Columbus, naming him admiral and viceroy of any discoveries. (The Encarta® 2000 New World Timeline © Copyright 1998, Helicon Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.)
1861 Virginia secedes from the Union.
1905 A New York law limiting hours of work in the baking industry to 60 per week is unconstitutional, the Supreme Court rules this date in the case of Lochner v. New York. The owner of a Utica bakery has been convicted of violating the law, but the court rules that Lochner's right of contract is guaranteed under the 14th Amendment and "the limitation of the hours of labor does not come within the police power." They have had second thoughts since then.
1961 "Bay of Pigs" invasion of Cuba underway. Aggressive, futile, expensive, and dangerous effort by the USA to topple Fidel Castro - who is still in power today.
1982 Canada gets its own Constitution. Britain's Elizabeth II signs the Constitution Act at Ottawa, replacing the North America Act of 1867.
1989 Students march on Beijing's Tiananmen Square to call for increased democracy in China.
2003 Today's Example of a Most Interesting Government Purchase: From the U.S. Agency for International Development: "Direct, no-bid, contract worth $680 million to Bechtel Corp., a private company with close ties to the Republican Party and the Bush administration." [In appreciation, Bechtel gave $1,303,765 to the politicians.]
and . . .
Quote of
the Day
"How could I have been so far off base? All my life I've known better than to depend on the experts. How could I have been so stupid, to let them go ahead?" [This expression of frustration may have got him killed by our government.]
    — President John F. Kennedy, 1961
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