British politician Tony Benn met his wife in Oxford in 1949. 9 days later, he proposed to her on a park bench. Later, he bought the bench from Oxford City Council and installed it in the garden of their home. They were together for 51 years. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ton…
Today I learned of 'If Day'. In 1942 Winnipeg, Manitoba simulated a Nazi German invasion and occupation of the city. It included a staged firefight, the internment of prominent politicians, the imposition of Nazi rule, and a parade. The event was a fundraiser for the war effort: over $3 million was collected. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/If_…
To call someone a monitor lizard in thailand is one of the worst insults or curses in the thai language. so much that people have been killed over it and a politician who called protesters this made front page news. it's so offensive its basically banned in broadcast media. bangkokpost.com/life/soci…
Milada HorΓ‘kovΓ‘ was a Czech politician who helped people flee the Nazi and Communist regimes in Czechoslovakia. She was executed for treason in 1950 just to have her verdict reversed 18 years later and receive multiple rewards for her heroic work globaloutlooknews.org/pos…
Last duel to occur between politicians in France occurred in 1967 between RenΓ© RibiΓ¨re and Gaston Defferre after Gaston insulted RenΓ© at French parliament and RenΓ© challenged Gaston to a sword fight. RenΓ© lost en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ren…
Today I learned of the Tory Power Stance, a stance done by British politicians where they stretch their legs far apart while ragdolling their arms en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tor…
Today I learned about Ximen Bao, a Chinese minister. He learned corrupt politicians sacrificed beautiful women to a River God and threatened floods if they weren't paid high taxes. Ximen had the politicians thrown into the river to tell the God they could not find a beautiful sacrifice, ending the practice. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xim…
In Fortaleza, Brazil, in 1920, the population elected a goat as a city councilor in protest to local oligarchies and politicians. mentalfloss.com/article/6…
Today I learned about The Black Book, a list of people that the Nazis would have arrested if they have occupied Britain during WWII. The list included notable politicians and Jewish people as well as author H G Wells, suffragist Sylvia Pankhurst and philosopher Bertrand Russell. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
The only surviving son of the first Prime Minister of Canada, Sir John A. Macdonald, was also a politician and briefly the eighth Premier of Manitoba. His last home in downtown Winnipeg, called Dalnavert, is now a museum en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hug…
In the 1400’s to the 1600’s the people of the Czech Republic protested corrupt politicians by throwing people out of windows, an act known as Defenestrations of Prague(the capital city of Czech.) czechcenter.org/blog/2019…
Shirley Temple's first acting job was in series of short film called Baby Burlesks, and in one of them she played an elite prostitute sent to influence a backwoods politician. She was 4-5 years old. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bab…
Today I learned about Kentucky abolitionist politician Cassius Marcellus Clay. During a debate in 1843, he survived an assassination attempt due to his political views. Despite being shot in the chest, Clay drew his Bowie knife, tackled his would be assassin, cut out his eyes, and threw him over an embankment. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cas…
Macaco TiΓ£o, a chimpanzee, had the habit of throwing excrement at visitors (including several politicians) to the Rio de Janeiro Zoo. A satirical newspaper ran his candidature for Rio de Janeiro mayor in 1988, and he got 9.5% of the votes. www0.rio.rj.gov.br/pcrj/d…
Today I learned of Cassius M. Clay, a politician and rabid abolitionist. He was once shot during a debate, and chased down his assassin, stabbing him & throwing him off an embankment. He later fended off 6 men, even though they had guns and he only had a bowie knife. He was a candidate to be Lincoln's VP. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cas…
We don't know how the great French mathematician Adrien-Marie Legendre really looked like, because the only surviving portrait of him is an angry face in a caricaturist's work. For 200 years, the portrait of a French politician was wrongly attributed to him and used in old textbooks. ams.org/notices/200911/rt…
An 18th century American businessman published a book in which he ranted about politicians, the clergy, and his wife. It had no punctuation and had random capitalization. In the 2nd edition, he added an extra page with 13 lines of punctuation marks, stating that readers could put them anywhere. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim…
While it is accepted that Big Ben was named after a man called Benjamin, it is not known whether that person was politician Sir Benjamin Hall or boxer Benjamin Caunt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big…
In 1992 German politician Vera Lengsfeld divorced her second husband after finding out he had been an informant for the Stasi and had spied on her for most of their marriage. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ver…
Following an immensely popular TED talk about the benefits of power poses, many politicians adopted wide-legged stances in photos. But 11 further studies on power posing failed to replicate the original findings. There is no science to it at all. theguardian.com/science/h…
There have been 16 Republican politicians and 26 Democratic politicians assassinated in US history en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
Today I learned about the Icarians, a French-based utopian socialist movement in the United States, established by the followers of politician and journalist Γ‰tienne Cabet, who invented the word "communism" in 1839. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ica…
John Shakespeare, a glover and leather worker, was the father of the renowned English playwright. He became a municipal politician, serving as alderman, chief magistrate, and mayor of Stratford. Enforcing Queen Elizabeth's reforms against idolatry, he destroyed wall paintings in a local church. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…
The characterization of Emperor Palpatine in the Star Wars saga as an ambitious and ruthless politician dismantling a democratic republic to achieve supreme power is in part inspired by Julius Caesar, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Adolf Hitler. Other elements of the character come from Richard Nixon. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pal…
Politicians mocked John Adams, nicknaming him "His Rotundity" after he had suggested that the president should be titled like royalty, suggesting titles such as, "His Majesty the President" and β€œHis Highness, the President of the United States of America, and Protector of the Rights of the Same" history.com/news/10-thing…
Today I learned about Xenophon Zolotas, a Greek scholar and politician, who gave two speeches in English to the IMF using nothing but Greek loanwords. malathronas.com/2815/gree…
A Filipino politician Reynaldo Dagsa, photographed his own assassination, 2011 npr.org/sections/thetwo-w…
Lithuanian politician ArtΕ«ras Zuokas won an IG Nobel prize in 2011, for β€œdemonstrating that the problem of illegal parked luxury cars can be solved by running them over with a tank”. Zuokas had used an armoured vehicle to run over an illegally parked car in a Vilinus bike lane. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art…
A Californian politician accidentally left his microphone on during a meeting break and was caught graphically boasting about two different affairs he was having. He resigned less than 15 hours after the story broke. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mic…
Former US president Gerald Ford, his wife Betty Ford, and politician Henry Kissinger all made guest appearances as themselves in a 1983 episode of night-time soap Dynasty ew.com/article/1993/12/17…
15 Titanic survivors who witnessed the ship breaking in half were discredited by US and UK politicians who led disaster probes- agreeing with the highest ranking surviving officer on the Titanic who said that it sank in one piece. nydailynews.com/new-york/…
Chicago is named the Windy City because in the mid 1800’s, journalists thought that the well to do and politicians were β€œwindbags” that only cared about money. worldatlas.com/articles/w…
NHL legend Maurice Richard was so beloved in Canada that he was named one of the inaugural members of the Order of Canada, had a short story written about him adapted into an animated film by the National Film Board, and was the first non-politician to be given a state funeral. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mau…
A picture of a giant robot helping Russia revolutionaries storm the winter palace in 1917, was accidentally used in an Australian history exam. Some students wasted time in trying to figure out what the giant robot was, thinking it was a statue of a Russian politician or a battleship. smh.com.au/education/vce-…
Gary Hart, a politician running for president in 1988, invited the media to follow him around after he was alleged to be a womanizer. He was quoted as saying, β€œFollow me around. I don't care. I'm serious.” Members of the media complied and he was caught having an affair 2 weeks later. nytimes.com/2014/09/21/ma…
A mock-Nazi invasion was staged in Winnipeg in 1942 in order to encourage Manitobians to invest in victory bonds. The "invasion" included the internment of prominent politicians, the imposition of Nazi rule, and a parade. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/If_…
An affair between two Brazilian politicians was revealed when they danced together to "BΓ©same Mucho". Later, one of them was to be introduced with a military march, but the director of the presidential band had them play "BΓ©same Mucho" instead. He got 3 days of house arrest for insubordination. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bes…
Cassius Marcellus Clay was a farmer, politician and abolitionist from Kentucky. After being shot in an assassination attempt, Clay killed his would-be assassin with a Bowie knife. Clay would later successfully fight off six attackers at once following a speech for the abolition of slavery. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cas…
Davy Crockett was not only an American pioneer, but a politician and a soldier: as a member of U.S. Congress he vehemently opposed Andrew Jackson and the Indian Removal Act (which led to the Trail of Tears) and eventually died in the Battle of the Alamo in 1836. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dav…
Romania had a much-abused law that allowed prisoners to reduce their sentences by writing scientific books in jail. 30 days were written off for every book. One politician wrote 9 of them, and one 212-page book was reportedly written in just 7 hours. theguardian.com/world/201…
Clement Vallandigham, a lawyer and Ohio politician defending a man accused of murder, accidentally shot himself and died while demonstrating how the victim might have accidentally shot himself. His client was cleared. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The last time China held contested elections was in 1913. It ended when Song Jiaoren, a young successful politician who pushed for democracy, was shot that year. Song crafted an election platform that appealed to the bulk of the 10% of the population entitled to vote, or 40 million men historytoday.com/archive/…
Wang Zhaoming, Chinese politician, who was first a member of the left-wing Kuomintang, then later became a right-wing anticommunist and betrayed both Chinese parties by collaborating with Imperial Japan. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wan…
Today I learned about Robert Smalls, a former slave who escaped by stealing a Confederate gunship, The CSS Planter. He did it by giving the correct signals at checkpoints, fooling Confederate onlookers from shore. After gaining his freedom, he became a successful businessman, publisher, & politician. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob…
Kim Jong Il had over 20 notable nicknames, including: Center of of the party, The Great Sun of Life, Amazing Politician .. etc en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The phrase "Bob's your uncle" (meaning "no problem" or "there you have it") rose to popularity because of a British PM and (uncharacteristically for a politician) nepotism. word-detective.com/back-f…
Of Tennessee politician, Byron Low Tax Looper. In 1998, in order to advance his political career, he legally changed his middle name from "Anthony" to "Low Tax". He also murdered his election opponent and was given a life sentence in prison. wikipedia.org/wiki/Byron_…
For 200 years, the wrong portrait was used to French mathematician Adrien-Maire Legendre. The mistaken portrait was of French politician Louis Legendre and was used until 2005. His only known depiction is an incomplete 1820's watercolour caricature from a French book of mathematicians. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adr…
Garry Wills (historian specializing American history) notes the parallels between President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address and the speech was delivered by Pericles, an eminent Athenian politician at the end of the first year of the Peloponnesian War. movies2.nytimes.com/books…
Roberto Farinacci, who was a italian fascist politician, lost his hand by fishing with grenades en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob…
Each year ancient Greeks had the option to pick a politician to exile for 10 years. They’d cast their vote with pieces of pottery called β€˜ostraka’ - it’s where we get the word ostracise from. britannica.com/topic/ostr…
Russian politician Viktor Pepelyayev delivered a controversial address in 1914, urging to provide education for the indigenous peoples of Siberia in their native languages, rather than in Russian. He was accused of Siberian separatism and had several clashes with the Russian nationalists en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vik…
Picasso's Weeping Woman was stolen in Melbourne then used as ransom to demand additional funding to arts. It was uninsured when the thieves walked in during day light and walked out with it. When politicians refused the demands it was returned unharmed. The case is still unsolved. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
Today I learned of "the Adam and Eve of Virginia", William Randolph. A Virginia politician in the 1600s, he is the ancestor of many important American figures, such as President Thomas Jefferson, SCOTUS Justice John Marshall, Confederate General Robert E. Lee, and Continental Congress President Peyton Randolph. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wil…
The expression "Only Nixon could go to China". It's used for situations where a politician has such a strong reputation among his core supporters that he gets away with doing things that would draw criticism had they been done by others, like a diplomatic trip to Communist China. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nix…
There is a "real" Valhalla in Germany, a huge memorial that honours "politicians, sovereigns, scientists and artists of the German tongue" designed after ancient Greek temples en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wal…
British politician John Stonehouse faked his death in November 1974, leaving a pile of clothes on a beach in Miami. It was presumed he had gone swimming and drowned. But Stonehouse was actually en route to Australia to set up a new life with his mistress and secretary, Sheila Buckley. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…
Today I learned that segregationist George Wallace was the first politician to try to discredit the press by using the term "liberal media" tandfonline.com/doi/abs/1…
About Bad Nenndorf interrogation camp - A post war British camp for German Military, business leaders, politicians, suspected soviet spies, and people suspected as just being risks. The camp would use torture that some would say surpassed that of the Gestapo in terms of depravity. theguardian.com/uk/2005/d…
Chicago got its "Windy City" nickname not from its windy weather but rather due to its reputation for braggadocios politicians who were "full of hot air". mentalfloss.com/article/4…
The ancient greeks used to choose their politicians via a method called "sortition", much like how potential jurors are selected today. And, like jury duty, it was seen as an inconvenience to those selected. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sor…
The author Ragnar Redbeard of the book "Might is Right" was Arthur Desmond a failed politician from New Zealand. He tried to get elected here twice before running away to Sydney after he forged letters of a local politician. He then went to the USA where he got the book published in 1896 stuff.co.nz/national/1182…
Today I learned about the "Black Nobility", a group of Roman noble families that have had close ties with the papacy for centuries, and that have produced financiers, popes and politicians. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bla…
In 1990, Czech and Slovak politicians "fought" the Hyphen War, a political battle over whether "Czechoslovakia" should be spelled with a hyphen. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyp…
Bolivia became landlocked in 1904 after losing the War of the Pacific. However, the country still observes the Day of the Sea, "where politicians give speeches and people listen to the recorded sound of seagulls." npr.org/2013/04/23/178651…
The Kenyan Bantu slang term for corrupt politicians is "WaBenzi" (Benz people), due to their association with Mercedes-Benz cars. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wab…
Australia has a long history of throwing eggs at politicians. The Australian Federal Police was formed in 1917 after a Prime Minister was egged. afp.gov.au/about-us/our-o…
The last recorded sword duel in history was held in France in 1967. Two politicians (Defferre & Ribiere) dueled because Defferre yelled β€˜Shut up, stupid!’ in the National Assembly and refused to apologize for his words. Defferre never apologized and also won the duel. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gas…
The reason hurricanes and cyclones have human names is that the original meteorologist to name them, Clement Wragge, began naming them after politicians he didn't like. This let him say they were 'causing great distress' or 'wandering aimlessly'. atlasobscura.com/articles…
Today I learned of the World's Biggest Liar event, an annual competition for telling lies held in Cumbria, England. Competitors have five minutes to tell the most convincing lie they can, and politicians and lawyers are banned because "they are judged to be too skilled at telling porkies." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wor…
Today I learned of Hannibal Hamlin, who, apart from having a badass name, was the first Republican vice-president (Lincoln's first Veep), and "is considered among the most influential politicians to have come from Maine". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Han…
Davy Crockett was more than just a folk hero, soldier and frontiersman. He was a soldier and a politician who who was elected to the House of Representatives in 1827, for Tennessee, and was vehemently opposed to Andrew Jackson's Indian Removal Act. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dav…
Ottawa's Parliament Pub is located directly opposite the 92.2m (302-foot) Peace Tower. It is a politics-themed pub where menu items are named after Canadian Cabinet Ministers, Party Leaders, other Members of Parliament, while a resident artist draws caricatures of Ottawa’s politicians ottawatourism.ca/ottawa-i…
- A 'Snollygoster' is an unprincipled person, especially a politician. lexico.com/en/definition/…
In the elections for mayor of Rio de Janeiro in 1988 the population was so unhappy with politicians, that a well-known monkey of the local zoo received over 400k votes. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mac…
Despite being born in the year 98 BC, Terentia the wife of the Roman politician Cicero lived to be over 100 years old en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ter…
In 1889, the Crown Prince of Austria-Hungary died in a suicide pact with his teenage mistress, leaving his cousin Franz Ferdinand to be heir. His daughter would become a prominent socialist politician en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rud…
There was a briefly popular social movement in the early 1930s called the "Technocracy Movement." Technocrats proposed replacing politicians and businessmen with scientists and engineers who had the expertise to manage the economy. en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/T…
Wellington, New Zealand has pedestrian lights in the form of Carmen Rupe, who was a drag performer, brothel keeper, an activist, and politician. i.stuff.co.nz/dominion-po…
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga was a Luo chieftain who became Kenya's first Vice-President. Odinga relinquished his position as a revered king in order to become a politician, following Luo tradition en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jar…
Former New Zealand politician Joseph Hatch ran a company where he killed 2 million penguins and turned them into oil en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos…
Former White House Chief of Staff John Sununu scored a 44/48 on the Mega Test, an intelligence test created by Dr. Ron Hoeflin. His score of 44 puts his I.Q. at 176. He is considered to have the highest official I.Q. of any former or current American politician. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…
There was so many squatters living on the property of Californio politician and landowner, JosΓ© Joaquin Estudillo, that it became known as "Squatterville". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos…
Once considered the most powerful woman in China, Madame Chiang Kai-shek died at her home in New York at age 106 in 2003. Using perfect English, Madame Chiang tried to convince U.S. politicians that defeating Japan was more important than stopping Germany cnn.com/2003/WORLD/asiapc…
Today I learned of The Mutiny Hotel - the early 80s cocaine-fueled Miami hotspot where the CIA partied side by side with notorious drug traffickers, celebrities and politicians. miami.com/things-to-do-in…
Clement Wragge, an Australian forecaster, was the first to give actual names to tropical storms and hurricanes . When the Australian government refused to acknowledge his system, he started naming the hurricanes after the the politicians he disliked or those that wouldn't support him. weather.com/storms/hurric…
Margaret Thatcher was the last politician named in Pink Floyd's album The Final Cut to die. She died in April 2013. genius.com/Pink-floyd-the…
Before Abraham Lincoln was a politician he used to be a wrestler and was inducted into the wrestling Hall of fame. snopes.com/fact-check/lin…
In the years after the passage of the 14th Amendment in 1868, a significant number of US states repealed, stopped enforcing, or struck down their anti-miscegenation laws due to a belief among judges and politicians that these laws conflicted with the 14th Amendment. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lov…
An area of Canada nearly twice the size of Texas was almost renamed "Bob" after politicians in the Northwest Territories asked residents to propose a new name. The campaign to name the territory Bob began as a prank, but thousands supported it. Politicians and Aboriginal leaders were not amused articles.baltimoresun.com…
The predominant speech of actors, wealthy US east coasters and politicians in the late 19th to mid 20th centuries is called the Mid-Atlantic Accent, and was an affected or "adopted" manner of speaking. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mid…
15th president James Buchanan, the only bachelor president, is suspected to have been a homosexual. He had a very close male friend whom he lived with for a decade, fellow politician Rufus King. President Andrew Jackson nicknamed the two Miss Nancy and Aunt Fancy. newsfeed.time.com/2012/05…
Today I learned about the Overton Window: a range of ideas or policies politicians could successfully campaign on- which the public is willing to consider or accept. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ove…
There was a movement in the early 1900s that wanted to replace all politicians and business persons with scientists and engineers. en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/T…
Astronaut Ed Mitchell said of his experience on the moon in 1971: "From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, β€˜Look at that, you son of a bitch.'" universetoday.com/14455/t…
Clement Vallandigham, a lawyer and Ohio politician defending a man accused of murder, accidentally shot himself while demonstrating how the victim might have unintenionally killed himself. His client was cleared. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cle…
Clement Wragge, the Australian man that introduced the systematic naming of storms and cyclones, would often name unpleasant southern storms using the names of politicians who thwarted his ambitions or denied funding for his weather bureau blogs.slq.qld.gov.au/jol/…
George Washington's great grandfather sailed a ship from England to the Colony of Virginia to trade goods when it crashed in the Potomac River. He found a nearby resident to stay with whose daughter he later married. He settled in the area and eventually became a local politician in the colony en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joh…

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