Add me to mailing list    |           |      Search

Advertising | All Lists | Archives | Classified Ads | This Day In American History



Friday, June 12, 2009

Jazz pianist/composer Armando Anthony "Chick" Corea born June 12, 1941 Chelsea, Massachusetts. Jazz fusion, post bop, played with Miles Davis in the late 1960s; his own band well-known avant-Garde. Nominated for 51 Grammy Awards out of which he has won 15.


Correction: Country Leasing Closing
    Classified Ads---Business Development
        Leasing Employment Bottoms Out?
    FBI Seize Otto Company Jet
25 Top Leasing Industry Influence- Point of Order
    Cartoon---Dog at his dish
What is a "rotation lease?"
    Classified Ads---Help Wanted
Larry Blazek's Son Graduates Great Lakes
    Lakeland Bank takes $9.5M hit on lease portfolio
        Ex-Popular Salesmen Start New Leasing Business
Placard---Why Birthdays are Good
    Taking of Pelham 123/Moon/The Diary of Anne Frank
    Nenette & Boni/The Seventh Seal
Fernando's View by Fernando F. Croce
OFE Leasing and Aungst Strategic Alliance
    Hands-on Banking & Leasing Consulting UAE
News Briefs---
        Church leasing scam probe widens
    Mortgage rates hit 6-month high
Government pushed bank to buy Merrill Lynch
Foreclosure Filings Increase Nearly 18%
        PC shipments drop 6.8 percent
        California Nuts Brief---
    Sports Briefs---
"Gimme that Wine"
    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
Baseball Poem
Daily Puzzle
        Weather, USA or specific area
Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Correction: Country Leasing Closing

"COUNTRY Leasing is part of COUNTRY Financial, Bloomington, Illinois. COUNTRY Leasing will discontinue new public leasing sales on Aug. 1, 2009. Six sales employees will be displaced."

Chris Anderson
Media Relations Coordinator
Telephone: (309)821-2031
Fax: (309)820-4055
COUNTRY¨ Financial
1701 N. Towanda Ave.
Bloomington, IL 61702

The web site states, "COUNTRY Leasing is a service of CC Services, Inc., a part of COUNTRY Insurance and Financial Services. For more than 70 years COUNTRY Insurance & Financial Services has provided dependable service to policyholders and customers. Since 1981, COUNTRY Leasing has carried that tradition forward becoming a leader in automotive leasing."

Ms. Anderson states the web site is not correct and requested Leasing
News print the statement above.

Country Leasing Closing its Doors



Classified Ads---Business Development

Philadelphia/Wilmington, DE
Experienced new business development/marketing professional with expertise in document imaging leasing; Major Account and independent dealer channel activation a strength.  Will travel/relocate.

For a full listing of all "job wanted" ads, please go to:

To place a free "job wanted" Leasing News ad:



Leasing Employment Bottoms Out?

According to the 2nd Quarter reports from the ZRG United States Leasing and Finance Executive Hiring Index new jobs in April have never dropped to this low level. In May, a slight rebound happened.

The report states:

"With many of the top 20 firms locked into hiring freezes and other major firms downsizing in 2009, prospects for employees seeking a new role are difficult with a major supply and demand imbalance.

"The ZRG index contrasts with Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) employment data as the ELFA data shows total employees while the ZRG index looks at the activity of firms "hiring". While "net employee count" for firms is down, actual hiring in a relative sense is much worse as companies appear to have taken down virtually all "help wanted" signs. April's index level could be the low mark signaling hope for upward movement for the balance of the year.

"Until funding is clearer for independents and banks are on more solid ground, the outlook is still quite slow. We are seeing some signs that client firms will begin to look to 2010 hiring beginning in the fourth quarter of this year."

"About the ZRG Index
The index is published quarterly and is based on several key proprietary data sources. These data sources include hiring data that comes directly from several top equipment finance and leasing companies, over 20 different National Job Boards and several leasing industry specific job sites. The sample group includes banks, captives and independents. These data points are weighted by relevance of senior level significance against overall hiring indicators in the industry to calculate the score.

"The index is for U.S. hiring. The next update will be in September 2009."

Complete report and more about ZRG Partners:



FBI Very Active in John Otto alleged Scam

The Citation II, tail number N725CC, jet air plane operated by the late John Otto's company Air Fred in Palm Springs, California was seized by the FBI, who said it was part of their on going investigation into an alleged Ponzi scheme of HL Leasing, Fresno, California, also owned by the late John Otto. Many criminal attorneys and veteran observers have told Leasing News that the FBI is moving quite fast in its investigation. They are also actively seizing assets.

Investors have questioned the quick trip the Citation II took before John Otto committed suicide from Palm Springs to Canada. The flight log shows the plane left the United States only once in the months before John Otto's suicide -- a round trip to Canada the day before he died. The plane flew from Palm Springs to Victoria International, arriving in Canada at 2:03 pm and leaving Canada for Palm Springs a little more than an hour later at 3:09 pm on May 10.

It is reported Otto's DB9 Aston Martin was also seized as well as records from the HL Leasing office and house. It is believed other personal property has been seized to date by the FBI. There also appear steps being taken regarding real estate property.

"Typically, after a seizure, the FBI will issue notifications to the owners and lien holders that the item is being seized as a fruit of a crime," attorney Tom Currin said, who has been giving pro bono advice to investors. "Once the FBI does seizures, it will be sold and the proceeds given to an appropriate entity to distribute, like the SEC or California DOC Receiver, as well as the agency for costs incurred.

"Lien holders may be satisfied and the remaining funds given to the investors, but often these sales do not result in a lot of cash for the victims, because there are usually long and expensive storage costs, costs of the agency to sell the equipment, and of course attorney fees. Moreover, the equipment is often sold at a bargain price, because of lack of advertising and often requires cash or certified checks on the spot. This is a blow to the class action and other lawyers involved in the case, because it is a significant asset, now out of reach of the attorneys powers to levy."

Leasing News can confirm it is common for the ATF, Drug Enforcement Agencies, FBI, IRS, and other agencies to conduct these auctions where those who attend may find some very good bargains.

If it is being seized as evidence, it still may be claimed by other entities, including the lien holder or claims against the lien holder, plus expenses incurred.

California Department of Corporation action may come this summer, when Receivership may be filed. This action normally takes longer, but with state budget problems, it may delay the date longer. It is more than the matter of collecting formal complaints, reading, categorizing, following up with questions, and then setting hearings before a more formal date.

Which entity will "trump" the other may depend on many factors, as well as who files first; however, assets seized by the FBI are in their domain for criminal prosecution.

The HL Leasing Blog had this advice from an anonymous CPA:

"Your best recovery in the immediate future is to take the tax loss and amend your 2008 returns and carry back the loss obtaining refunds. Pay your CPA instead of a retainer to an attorney. When the involuntary bankruptcy is filed, and it will be, a creditor's committee will be formed. Attorneys will be appointed to represent the creditor's committee. You will be noticed by the court. You can also make the court aware of your existence if you are not noticed. I would expect the bankruptcy to be filed in the US District that serves Fresno."

Air Fred:



25 Top Leasing Industry Influence- Point of Order

"I was a former employee of Eaton Financial (1990-1998) right after their acquisition by AT&T Capital. We still used the Eaton name for a year or so after the sale when Paul Gass was retained as president of the business. Paul Gass was probably one of the most sincere and generous owners I ever worked for. John Colton and Tom Herlihy were undoubtedly Paul's right hand men. Paul's sale to college buddy, Tom Wajnert, at AT&T Capital was definitely a timing bonanza, but the portfolio fell victim to poor credit decisions, unscrupulous sales people, and a very, very bad auditing system. I was in the back end of the business trying to keep the sides together. We witnessed many deals that the Fraud Police today would have a field day with. The auto-credit decisioning process left too much to chance and too many deals came through that escaped the legitimacy litmus test. Non-existent vendors, sales leasebacks of non-existent equipmentÉif there was a way for crooks to take advantage of the loosey-goosey decisioning process, they found it.

"When AT&T Capital sold out to Newcourt, and Newcourt to was a laugher. Talk about a turkey. But the biggest surprise was when Paul partnered up with BankVest. I think some of the old Eaton buddies rejoined them, although by that time, most ended up at Copelco and later DLL. Rumor had it that he personally guaranteed much of the securitized paper when the credit-worthiness of the underlying BankVest portfolio started to show serious cracks. Victims of the same sleazy sales network? Can't say. Too bad for Paul...a true gentleman in the industry. But one of the 25 most influential people in the industry? Anyone, whether it is Colton or Gass, who are tagged with a failing company that ended up in bankruptcy, can't seriously be considered a legitimate candidate. No matter how personally noble and respected they may have been in more prosperous times, a debacle at the end of the careers has to weigh heavily."

(name with held)

Point of Order:

Readers nominate the person and provide the description. They can be corrected, added, or changed once printed. The sender is responsible for stating why the person is considered a top influence in the industry.

There have been several turned down as not qualifying, others when just a name is provided. The rules are simple:

"Influential" as "a person whose actions and opinions strongly influence the course of events" {Online Dictionary}. They must be alive, and do not need to be active any longer in the leasing or finance industry.

As a further Point of Order, there may be some already on the list who readers put in the same category as does the writer above concerning Paul Gass. Following the rules, despite the problems at the end of BankVest, his influence cannot be denied. In addition, such persons as Robert Fine, Vice-President NorVergence or Jim Raeder of CapitalWerks/Republic Leasing of Southern California or Tim Price of T&W Leasing, to name just a few, would be considered by this editor, although none have been nominated to date. This is not to invite the nominations, but if so, the reasons why should be convincing.

Please Send nominations to:

New nominees to appear in the next list:

J. Stephen (Steve) Gagne: After expanding his Detroit-based small ticket leasing business VMS Leasing into a regional firm with offices in Ohio and Florida - Gagne sold out to Dana Corporation in the early 1980's. With investment tax credit as a primary incentive for growth, initially named Potomac Leasing and later dubbed Dana Commercial Credit, the group was tasked with converting the regional model to one of national, and ultimately international scope. What began as a copier leasing company grew and evolved into "The PC Leasing Source". The captives outsourced to DCC - Apple Commercial Credit, AST Leasing, Compaq Capital, IBM Global Finance, Kaypro Lease-Link, NEC Business Credit. As PC distribution evolved, so did DCC under Gagne's leadership. Ingram Micro, Tech Data, and Merisel all were clients of DCC. ComputerLand, Connecting Point, MicroAge, Intelligent Electronics, and others were clients through the '90's. To better serve their large cadre of global clients, DCC expanded to Canada, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Germany, Austria and France before selling out to Heller Financial in late 1998 for nearly three times book value. At Heller, Gagne served as President of Global Vendor Finance until his retirement in January 2000.

Curt Lysne, CLP-- Curt has worked all facets of the leasing industry. From being a broker himself to the head of both GE Capital / Colonial Pacific's credit department and chief sales officer. In both capacities Curt managed (directly or indirectly) relationships with over 400 brokers as well top brass within the GE organization itself (Paul Bossidy-son of famed Larry Bossidy-to mention in specific). In these roles Curt always maintained the highest levels of professional standards and ethics. Both his business and personal integrity are without question and he has always treated people in a fair and ethical manner. I think he exemplifies what a leader in this industry should possess and as such acts as a great role model to others. His common sense approach to solving business problems has always been much appreciated by the broker community. Further, Curt has served on many of the industry associations and is always willing to contribute to forums and round tables. All in all a stand up guy who has a lot left to offer all of us. June 12
List (click on name for full description:)

Jim Adler
Sudhir P. Amembal
A.J. Batt
Joe Bonnano, CLP
Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP
John P. Colton
Clark Covert
John C. Deane
Thomas Depping
Michael J. Fleming
Al Gamper, Jr.
Paul Gass
Bruce Kropschot
John Kruse
Paul A. Larkins
Elaine Litwer
Charlie Lester
Lisa A, Levine
Barry Marks

Dan Michalek
Jim Merrilees, CLP
Paul Menzel, CLP
Ben Millerbis, CLP/Brad Peterson, CLP
Alan J. Mogol
Ned Mundell
Deborah Monosson
David Murray
Walter Rabin
Jim Renner
Gary Shivers
Robert W. Stubbs
Ron Wagner, CLP
Paul Weiss
David Wiener
Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Joe Woodley, CLP





What is a "rotation lease?"

P&L Capital is known for its rotation lease. Their specific niches are Desktops, Laptops, and Monitors for companies who need to rotate, or already rotating every 2-3 years. P&L wants the equipment back and they resell them

This is a consulting firm that is going to rotate all laptops every 2 years. They have 29 laptops total and will rotate the rest next year. So, for now, 1 schedule per year.

Equipment: Lenovo Laptops
Cost: $1,245.00
Quantity: 15
Total: $19,425
Term: 24 months
Broker Fee: $1,100
Payment: $801.68
Stream Rate: (negative) -1.085%



Classified Ads---Help Wanted


Like selling vendor programs and large transactions?
Enjoy international financing programs?
Prefer the advantages of a commission only environment with the security of health and welfare benefits?

CLICK HERE to find out how to have fun again.



Larry Blazek's Son Graduates Great Lakes Naval Academy

Navy File Photo: Ross Field, Naval Training Center Great Lakes, Illinois

"I was in the Navy in the early 60's," Larry said. "It's all high tech now, I was a radar man and the radar then was very primitive."

Larry Blazek is a former Barclay's Bank Manager, who opened his own leasing company, then became a broker, finally joining Pentech Financial, continuing to work for them today, long time personal friend of Kit Menkin. When his son Eric wanted to go into the U.S. Navy, he asked Kit: Can you believe a "Navy Recruiter?" Today, yes.

Things have changed since Larry and I were in the military. Our attitude was to never volunteer, never been seen to be called for extra duty or do anything. But then I was not "RA," and today the younger people like my son Dash and Larry's son Eric, they have a great deal of patriotism and want to be the best that they can be. They sign up for extra duty, for extra training, and work out to be in the best physical condition that they can be. They are in the best mental and physical condition they can be!!!

Larry Blazek with his son Eric and wife Irene

Eric and his sister Tanya. She just graduated from San Jose State with a masters in education and will be a grade school teacher. Larry notes they get their good looks from their mother.

"It was great seeing Eric again and he was very enthusiastic about being in the Navy and serving his country," he said. "We are very proud of both of them."

Navy Pier

Eric with his proud father. Eric now in Pensacola waiting for AVA School. He already has volunteer for Special Warfare training after he finishes his AVA school.

Larry Blazek
Director of Recoveries
Office: 408-879-2215
Pentech Financial Services, Inc.
240 E. Hacienda Ave, Suite 100
Campbell, CA 95008

(This ad is a "trade" for the writing of this column. Opinions contained in the column are those of Mr. Terry Winders, CLP)


### Press Release ##########################

Lakeland Bank takes $9.5M hit on lease portfolio disposal

(The bank previously said high diesel fuel costs hurt independent truckers and equipment lease originators, including one that owed $46 million related to 1,400 leases. The sale, announced last week, included all the remaining leases acquired by the bank from that originator, according to Lakeland's announcement. See history following press release. Editor)

OAK RIDGE, N.J., -- Lakeland Bancorp, Inc. (Nasdaq: LBAI - News; "Lakeland") announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, Lakeland Bank ("Bank"), has completed the sale for $23.6 million of four pools of leases having a combined net receivable balance of $33.1 million, including $7.4 million in non-performing assets. This will result in a second quarter pre-tax loss of $9.5 million and an after-tax loss of $5.6 million associated with these transactions. These sales are part of the Bank's ongoing program to reduce risk within its lease portfolio.

The leases sold included all of the remaining leases acquired by the Bank from an originator, described in Lakeland's second quarter 2008 earnings release, that had been unable to fulfill its contractual obligations to the Bank. The leases generated by that originator were sold at 66% of their net receivable value. The sales prices of the three other pools generally ranged from 87% to 95% of net receivable value.

"The risk profile of Lakeland Bank's lease portfolio is measurably greater than our core loan portfolios. The sales announced today reflect a strategy, which we intend to continue to pursue, to accelerate the disposition of those leases that were generated by originators whose lease pools reflect enhanced risk," noted Thomas J. Shara, President and CEO. "We have been, and remain, committed to the strategy of proactively reducing those portions of the leasing portfolio which expose the Bank to increased risks. Since the end of June 2008, our lease portfolio has been reduced from $386 million, which was 20% of total loans, to $225 million, or approximately 11% of total loans."

(Lakeland Bank, Montville, NJ (01/09)"The higher provision includes $8.5 million related to the leasing division for the fourth quarter and $17.8 million for the full year. During the fourth quarter, a second leasing originator indicated that it could no longer fulfill all of its obligations under contractual recourse provisions. The Company had $37.8 million outstanding from this originator representing 860 individual leases of which approximately 83% were current or less than 30 days past due."
(10/08) Let's go its Equipment Leasing Division President Stephen Schachtel by "mutual agreement, "as per the SEC filing. Chief Executive Officer Tom Shara said the replacement of Schachtel with the division's number two man, Robert Ingram, is part of a plan to downsize the leasing business. "We want to go to a local leasing platform. We don't want to do a national lease book of business," said the former TD Banknorth executive who took over as CEO in April after former President & CEO Roger Bosma retired. Heavy losses in truck leasing reported, particularly by one major lessee.)

### Press Release ############################

(Leasing News provides this ad "gratis" as a means to help support the growth of Lease Police)



### Press Release ##############################

Ex-Popular Salesmen Start New Leasing Business

Platteville, WI, Equipment Financing Specialists (EFS) is a Wisconsin based national equipment financing and leasing company. The company's founders are Chris Gile, Allen Hosack, & John Mikloiche, all former Senior Business Development Officers at the former Popular Equipment Finance.

EFS works closely with equipment manufacturers and vendors providing financial merchandising to their customer base. EFS, through its lending partners, provide cost efficient solutions for acquiring equipment.

Their main areas of focus are in material handling, construction, and transportation markets. At EFS, we have made personal service our main priority.

The EFS team works to truly understand each individual customer's needs on a personal level. This personal service allows us to tailor the right program for each customer's individual needs.

EFS has the flexibility that many large finance companies don't have.

EFS also welcomes broker business. Please visit our website for more details.

### Press Release ##############################





Fernando's View
By Fernando F. Croce

In Theaters:

The Taking of Pelham 123 (Columbia): Most movie remakes donÍt bring much new to the original stories, but this revamping of the smart and exciting 1974 thriller delivers plenty of thrills of its own. It seems like a day like any other for New York subway dispatcher Walter Garber (Denzel Washington), until a subway train is suddenly hijacked by bandits during his shift. As he negotiates the ransom demands over the radio with criminal mastermind Ryder (John Travolta), Walter uses his knowledge of the cityÍs underground system to help the police. Will he make it before time runs out? ThereÍs more than enough testosterone to go around, courtesy of director Tony Scott (ñTop Gunî), though itÍs the sharp interplay between Washington and Travolta that makes the movie fly.

Moon (Sony Pictures Classics): Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) is an astronaut stuck working with a moon-based company in the near future. He works long days mining a new kind of material that might help end the oil crisis back on Earth, and lives by herself, counting the days before he can go back home to his family. With just two weeks left, however, Sam becomes increasingly paranoid about his isolated surroundings, and his imagination starts to run wild. Will his sanity hold until his replacement arrives? This inspired, atmospheric science-fiction stunner is the first feature by director Duncan Jones, though from its confident visuals you would guess itÍs the work of a seasoned pro. Suspenseful, clever, and featuring a terrific performance by Rockwell, itÍs a sleeper worth seeking out.

New on DVD:

The Diary of Anne Frank (Fox): Anne FrankÍs account of a Jewish family in hiding during the Nazi occupation of Holland is stirringly visualized in this exceptional, Oscar-nominated 1959 drama, now being released in a 50th-anniversary DVD edition. The dangerous situation is viewed through the eyes of Anne (Millie Perkins), the young daughter of Otto (Joseph Schildkraut). As German forces round up Jews outside, the Frank family finds a hiding place in the attic of a shop, sharing the cramped spaces with the Van Daan family (led by Shelley Winters, in an Oscar-winning performance, as Petronella). As time passes, Anne realizes that her budding emotions toward Mrs. Van DaanÍs son (Richard Beymer) are just as trenchant as the dangers waiting outside. A difficult subject handled with intensity and delicacy.

Nenette & Boni (Strand): The beauty of French director Claire DenisÍs movies is hard to describe. Her touch is so gentle and yet to fierce that her movies drift by gracefully and only later you notice how devastating they really are. This incisive character study is a perfect example of DenisÍs hard-to-pin-down magic. Nenette (Alice Houri) and Boni (Gregoire Colin) are young siblings who have been apart since their parents got a divorce. Nenette has been skipping school since she got pregnant, while Boni works at a pizza place run by an eccentric couple (Vincent Gallo and Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi). When a sudden revelation brings brother and sister back together, theyÍre faced with the emotions they long left behind. A visually inventive and very moving coming-of-age story. With subtitles.

The Seventh Seal (Criterion): Even those who have never seen this classic 1957 Swedish drama are probably familiar with the image of a man trying to postpone his death by playing chess with the Grim Reaper. ItÍs an idea thatÍs been parodied many times in movies and shows, yet this fantasy by the great Ingmar Bergman still retains its power and sense of wonder. The story follows the slain knight Antonius (Max Von Sydow), who keeps the Reaper (Bengt Ekerot) at bay by challenging him to a match of chess. In the meantime, looking for answers to the mysteries of life, Antonius befriends a cheery family of traveling actors. A must for students of serious cinema, this unforgettable film receives a deluxe DVD treatment from Criterion. With subtitles.



### Press Release ##########################

OFE Leasing and Aungst Financial Services
Announce Strategic Alliance

In a joint statement, the owners of OFE Leasing, Holmes, PA and Aungst Financial Services, Fleetwood, PA, today announced that they have entered into a Strategic Alliance to support the equipment finance needs of equipment rental businesses in the Middle Atlantic and New England states Ð the main marketing territory for Aungst Financial Services, and expand the national marketing efforts of OFE Leasing, a leading provider of equipment financing for the Rental Industry.

According to Joe O'Hara, President of OFE Leasing, "Ed Aungst has been recognized rental finance professional for twenty-plus years, offering the highest level of support and quality service to rental operators, as well as the manufacturers and dealers who service the rental industry. We are excited about the opportunities that Mr. Aungst will generate for this new alliance".

In an additional statement, Ed Aungst, President of Aungst Financial Services, added, "The strategic alliance with OFE Leasing offers my customers the best combination of financing options with our mutual commitment to customer service. The combined operations look forward to our continued support of both the General Members and the Associate Members of the American Rental Association."

The announced Alliance between OFE Leasing and Aungst Financial Services expands the sales and marketing operations dedicated to the rental industry, which also includes operations in Denver, CO and Houston, TX.

### Press Release ##########################



### Press Release ##########################

Hands-on Banking & Leasing Consulting UAE

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Hands-on Banking & Leasing Consulting unveiled its new corporate identity and its new website. "The target of this full review was to emphasize on our commitment to the region and our will to communicate. The new logo and the website have been designed to reflect Arabic culture, communication and pragmatism. We have added to the website a page to provide key information on financing activities in the Middle-East and also, a specific page to share our punctual contributions/comments on news or events. We enjoy sharing our ideas, our views and analyses and we hope you will appreciate these changes" commented Tristan de Ferluc, Hands-on' General Manager.

Hands-on Banking & Leasing Consulting is a management consulting firm based in the UAE and dedicated to Middle-East banks and specialized finance companies (car, equipment, real estate and consumer finance).

Hands-on Banking & Leasing Consulting
United Arab Emirates
+971 2 681 8703
+971 50 668 7881

### Press Release ##########################



News Briefs----

Church leasing scam probe widens

Mortgage rates hit 6-month high

Foreclosure Filings Increase Nearly 18%

Government pushed bank to buy Merrill Lynch

PC shipments drop 6.8 percent



Sports Briefs----

Lakers outlast Magic in OT, snare 3-1 lead in NBA Finals

49ers allowed to take chances under new regime

Raiders QB improving, but far from a finished product



California Nuts Briefs---

Schwarzenegger takes step toward carrying out budget threat,0,5134908.story



“Gimme that Wine”

Oregon colleges expand vineyard and wine programs

The pH factor: The truth about acidity in wine

Winery fire a major setback for AZ winemaking industry

Wine pros take rigorous tests for credentials,0,6897398.story

Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Winery Atlas\
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Today's Top Event in History

1944- In the last years of World War II, the Japanese military turned to increasingly desperate (and suicidal) attack methods. One such method was the kaiten: a kamikaze-like torpedo piloted by a crew member grateful for the honor. The sacrificial warriors would climb into 48-foot metal tubes, seat themselves in canvas chairs before a steering wheel and guidance instruments - a compass, Swiss clock, and radio - and wait to hear the fatal word: Fire! Released from the metal bands clamping it to the submarine, the kaiten began rocketing towards eternity. With a top speed of twenty knots and a range of 27 miles, it was quite a sight, although it regularly missed its target as the pilot struggled to keep the speeding missile on course. When he was successful - the kaiten was tipped with a magnetic warhead designed to explode within 25 feet of any metal hull - the pilot was vaporized upon impact, often in mid-prayer. (It was impossible for a submerged "mother" sub to retrieve a kaiten, and if the pilot missed his target, he eventually ran out of fuel, and, gliding to the ocean bottom, was fatally crushed by the immense pressure.) ( In Harm's Way )


This Day in American History

    1771 -Patrick Gass,born, Falling Springs PA, Sergeant of Lewis & Clark Expedition, wrote a famous book of the exhibition, still available
    1775-The first U.S. Naval battle in the Revolutionary War took place when Captain James Moore of the British schooner Margaretta arrived in the harbor of Machias, Maine, and ordered the inhabitants to take down a liberty pole they had erected. The townspeople, led by Jeremiah and John O'Brien, set out in a confiscated sloop, the Unity, and in a hand-to hand encounter captured the Margaretta and confiscated her cannons. The captured crew was marched overland to Cambridge , MA , where they were turned over to General George Washington. The American loss was four killed and eight wounded.
    1776 - Virginia's colonial legislature became the first to adopt a Bill of Rights. The Virginia Declaration of Rights granted every individual the right to the enjoyment of life and liberty and to acquire and possess property. The Virginia document was written by George Mason and was a precursor to the Declaration of Independence. Mason refused to endorse the Declaration of Independence because it did not include a Bill of Rights.
    1813 - The Revenue cutter Surveyor, at anchor in the York River, Virginia, was surprised by a three-barge attack force launched from the British frigate HMS Narcissus. Outnumbered 50 to 15, the cuttermen wounded seven and killed three of the enemy before the cutter was captured. The British commanding officer of Narcissus was so impressed by "the determined way in which her deck was disputed, inch by inch," in hand-to-hand combat, he returned to Revenue Captain William Travis, the commanding officer of Surveyor, "the sword you had so nobly used."
    1862-At the beginning of the American Civil War, the Confederate Army out maneuvered the Union Army, winning many of the battles, but the fact was the
    1838 - The Iowa Territory was organized.
    1864 - After suffering a devastating defeat on June 3, Union General Ulysses S. Grant pulls his troops from their positions at Cold Harbor, Virginia, and moves south. Back in Washington, Lincoln fears he may lose the coming election due to the events of the Civil War and unrest of recruiting drives in the North.
    North had more men and supplies (especially since they paid "bonus" for
    recruits and allowed citizen to use substitutes, as many immigrants entered the United States, they were both given a bonus to join, plus clothes, food, housing, and pay. This day in one of his flamboyant moves, Confederate J.E.B " Beauty" Stuart led a force of cavalry and artillery to reconnoiter Federal positions on the Peninsula . Considered the South's first hero, Stuart and his men completely encircled McLennan's forces, disrupting communications and supply lines and leading the Union forces to believe they were threatened to a much larger force. The large boost to Confederate morale was strengthened when Stonewall Jackson's forces were reinforced under orders by Robert E. Lee. Four days later, Stuart had circled the entire Yankee force, 105,000 strong, and provided Lee with crucial information. Lee dispatched Stuart, his dashing cavalry leader, and 1,200 troopers to investigate the position of McClellan's right flank. Stuart soon discovered that McClellan's right flank did not have any natural topographic features to protect it, so he continued to ride around the rest of the army in a bold display that exceeded Lee's orders. His troopers took prisoners and harassed Federal supply lines. They rode 100 miles, pursued by Union cavalry that was commanded, coincidentally, by Stuart's father-in-law, Philip St. George Cooke. The Confederate cavalry was far superior to their Yankee counterparts, and the expedition became legendary when Stuart arrived back to Richmond on June 15. The information provided to Lee helped the Confederates begin an attack that eventually drove McClellan from Richmond 's doorstep. Two years later facing a better coordinated and overwhelming Union Army, General Stuart tried this same strategy, but was fatally wounded and his unit was basically split up into other Confederate forces due to the lack of his leadership. It was said that if Stuart had arrived in Gettysburg on the first day, the outcome may have been different. The battle here was dumb luck into running into one of General Lee's contingents on the way to join him in the plan to raid Washington , D.C. Stuart was said to be the "eyes and ears" of any General Lee campaign, also considered one of the most brilliant war strategist and commander of troops.
        1868-birthday of Solomon (Sol) White, baseball player and manager and sportswriter, born at Bellaire , OH . White played five seasons in white organized baseball and the balance of his career as a player and manager in black baseball. He wrote, " The History of Colored Baseball" in 1907. Died at New York , NY , August 1955.
        1924-birthday of George Herbert Walker Bush ,41 st US President, amateur golfer and former college baseball player, born Milton , MA .

        1928-birthday of Vic Damone ( Vito Farinola), New York , New York .,,420154,00.

        1929- Anne Frank was Born at Frankfurt , Germany . Here family moved to Amsterdam to escape the Nazis but after Holland was invaded by Germany , they had to go into hiding. In 1942, Anne began to keep a diary. She died at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945. After the war, her father published her diary, on which a stage play and movie were later based. She is remembered today.
        1930- Barbara Harris birthday; the first woman bishop of the Episcopalian Church . Black and lesbian, her ordination as suffragan bishop of Massachusetts in 1989 is still being opposed by many in the religious community.
        1935-Ella Fitzgerald, with the Chick Webb Band, makes her record debut with " Love and Kisses" ( Decca 494).
        1938-Count Basie and Benny Goodman bands play Madison Square Gardens .
        1939- The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc., was dedicated at Cooperstown , NY . More than 200 individuals have been honored for their contributions to the game of baseball by induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame. The first players chosen for membership (1936) were Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner,
    Babe Ruth, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson. Relics and memorabilia from the history of baseball are housed at this shrine of America 's national sport.
        1941- Chick Corea Birthday
He established himself as a major jazz figure with his work on Miles Davis's landmark jazz-rock albums "In a Silent Way" and "Bitches Brew" in 1969. Corea continued his rock fusion experiments by forming the group Return to Forever in 1972, making extensive use of synthesizers. The group was popular on the rock circuit before disbanding in 1976. Since then, Corea has played mostly acoustic piano.
        1944- In the last years of World War II, the Japanese military turned to increasingly desperate (and suicidal) attack methods. One such method was the kaiten: a kamikaze-like torpedo piloted by a crew member grateful for the honor. The sacrificial warriors would climb into 48-foot metal tubes, seat themselves in canvas chairs before a steering wheel and guidance instruments - a compass, Swiss clock, and radio - and wait to hear the fatal word: Fire! Released from the metal bands clamping it to the submarine, the kaiten began rocketing towards eternity. With a top speed of twenty knots and a range of 27 miles, it was quite a sight, although it regularly missed its target as the pilot struggled to keep the speeding missile on course. When he was successful - the kaiten was tipped with a magnetic warhead designed to explode within 25 feet of any metal hull - the pilot was vaporized upon impact, often in mid-prayer. (It was impossible for a submerged "mother" sub to retrieve a kaiten, and if the pilot missed his target, he eventually ran out of fuel, and, gliding to the ocean bottom, was fatally crushed by the immense pressure.) ( In Harm's Way )
    1944 - A third wave of Allied forces has landed. There are now 326,000 troops, 104,000 tons of supplies and 54,000 vehicles deployed in Normandy, France. Elements of US 7th Corps advance across the Cotentin Peninsula and southwest. Also, the 4th Division is engaged at Montebourg, Crisbecq and near Azeville to the northward drive on Cherbourg. The 5th Corps assists 7th Corps and advances toward St Lo. Caumont is captured and Foret de Cerisy and the Bayeux road are reached.
        1948-Stan Kenton Band ends tour with concert at Hollywood Bowl.
        1948-Eddie Arcaro rode Citation to victory in the Belmont Stakes, making the colt, the eight horse to win the Triple Crown and the last until 1973.
        1948-Ben Hogan won the US open at Riviera Country Club with a record score of 276, five strokes better than any previous Open score. For Hogan, it was the first of four Open Championships, the others coming in 1950, 1951, and 1953.
        1952- Maurice Olley, Chevrolet's Chief Engineer, completed his chassis, code-named "Opel," which would eventually become the chassis for the 1953 Corvette. In February of 1956 Arkus-Duntov drove a modified Corvette V-8 to a two-way stock car record of 150 miles per hour at the Daytona Raceway. While the Corvette would not surpass the T-Bird in sales during the 1950s, it would fulfill GM's initial expectation in becoming the first American sports car.
        1955---Top Hits
    Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White - Perez Prado
    Rock Around the Clock - Bill Haley & His Comets
    Learnin' the Blues - Frank Sinatra
    In the Jailhouse Now - Webb Pierce
        1957- Jerry Lee Lewis's "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" entered the Billboard country and western chart. The next week, the record made its debut on the Billboard pop chart as well. The song first sold 100,000 copies in the US South. After Lewis appeared on Steve Allen's TV show, "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" sold more than six-million copies. It would eventually top both the country and R'n'B charts, and rise to number three on the Hot 100 survey.
    1959--Chess Records release two LPs in US - "Chuck Berry on Top" and "Go Bo Diddley".
    1961 - President John F. Kennedy signed a Presidential Proclamation calling for the American flag to be flown at the Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington, Virginia, "at all times during the day and night." Discussions between the Attorney General's office and Marine Corps officials earlier in 1961 on improving the visibility and appearance of the monument led to the proposal to fly the Flag continuously, which by law could only be done by Congressional legislation or by Presidential proclamation.
        1963-Medgar Evers, civil rights activist and martyr, assassinated
        1963 - Elizabeth Taylor starred in the $40,000,000 film epic, "Cleopatra". The movie certainly gave ticket buyers their money's worth. It lasted for four hours, three minutes. "Cleopatra" opened at the Rivoli Theatre in New York City on this day. Richard Burton starred as Marc Antony, Rex Harrison played Julius Caesar, Hume Cronyn played Sosigines, Carroll O'Connor was Casa and Roddy McDowell appeared as Octavian.
        1963---Top Hits
    It's My Party - Lesley Gore
    Sukiyaki - Kyu Sakamoto
    Da Doo Ron Ron - The Crystals
    Lonesome 7-7203 - Hawkshaw Hawkins
    1964-Nelson Mandela, South African president and political activist, sentenced to life imprisonment after conviction for "sabotaging" the South African government. Many American were incensed, both political and business "boycotts" began.
    1965-Six weeks after it entered the Billboard Hot 100, "Back In My Arms Again" becomes The Supremes fifth consecutive number one hit. They were the first American group to accomplish that feat.
    1965 - The Queen of England announced that The Beatles would receive the coveted MBE Award. The Order of the British Empire recognition had previously been bestowed only upon British military heroes, many of whom were so infuriated by the news, they returned their medals to the Queen. In fact, John Lennon wasn't terribly impressed with receiving the honor. He returned it (for other reasons) four.
    1967-The US Supreme Court decision in "Loving v Virginia " swept away all 16 remaining state laws prohibiting interracial marriages.

        1971---Top Hits
    Want Ads - The Honey Cone
    Rainy Days and Mondays - Carpenters
    It's Too Late/I Feel the Earth Move - Carole King
    You're My Man - Lynn Anderson
    1973-Grand Funk record "We're An American Band", which will become their first US number one single by the following September.
    1973- Emily Howell is hired by Frontier airlines, the first woman pilot for a scheduled passenger airline in the United States . She had trained male commercial pilots for years. About six months later Bonnie Tiburzi flew out of New York as the first woman pilot of a nation-wide airline, American Airlines.

        1979---Top Hits
    Love You Inside Out - Bee Gees
    We are Family - Sister Sledge
    Just When I Needed You Most - Randy Vanwarmer
    She Believes in Me - Kenny Rogers
    1983 - The state of Utah was besieged by floods and mudslides. Streets in downtown Salt Lake City were sandbagged and turned into rivers of relief. The town of Thistle was completely inundated as a mudslide made a natural dam.
    1987 - President Ronald Reagan delivered a now-famous speech at the Brandenburg Gate in West Berlin, "General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe , if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" Destruction began November 9, 1989 on the Berlin Wall that had divided the city for some 28 years.
        1987---Top Hits
    You Keep Me Hangin' On - Kim Wilde
    Always - Atlantic Starr
    Head to Toe - Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam
    I Will Be There - Dan Seals
    1988-A dozen of Canada's top songwriters were honored in Vancouver for writing songs that had been played on Canadian radio at least 100,000 times since 1965. Gene MacLellan won three of the awards from the Performing Rights Organization of Canada, including one for writing the Anne Murray hit, "Snowbird". The others were for "Put Your Hand in the Hand" and "The Call". Burton Cummings also won three awards for "Stand Tall", "Break It to Them Gently" and "These Eyes".
    1990- Oakland A's Rickey Henderson becomes 2nd to steal 900 bases.
        1991-Particle Physics Laboratory in Geneva , held a seminar about the World Wide Web, a new hypertext system designed by British computer scientists Tim Berners-Lee during a fellowship at CERN. In May, Berners-Lee had presented the architecture for the World Wide Web to a CERN committee and released a version of the Web on CERN's computers. Berners-Lee had been developing the system, which allowed Internet documents to "link" to each other easily, since 1989. By 1990, he had created the basic parameters of the World Wide Web, which were posted on the Internet in the summer of 1991. Berners-Lee continued to develop the Web through 1993, working with feedback from Internet users. By late 1991 and early 1992, the Web was widely discussed, and in early 1993, when Marc Andreessen and other graduate students at the University of Illinois released the Mosaic browser (Netscape's precursor), the Web rapidly became a popular communications medium.
        1994 - The gruesomely-murdered bodies of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman were discovered outside Nicole's Brentwood , California condominium. Within days, actor/football legend O.J. Simpson was charged by police. He was acquitted in criminal court [1995], but found liable for the deaths in a civil suit [1997]. The murderer(s) have not been caught as of this date ( or was he and let go by "a glove that did not fit?")
        2002ÑThe Los Angeles Lakers make it three NBA Championships in
    a row.

    NBA Finals Champions This Date
        1984 Boston Celtics
        1991 Chicago Bulls
        2002 Los Angeles Lakers


Los Angeles Lakers

New Jersey Nets


Shaquille O'Neal, L.A. .

     2003-Van Morrison, Queen, Little Richard and Phil Collins were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in a New York City ceremony.



Baseball Poem

1933---President Ronald Reagan's voice carried him to Des Moines and WOC's larger sister station, WHO. Broadcasting over a new 50,000-watt clear-channel station that carried throughout the Midwest, Reagan became a well-known sports announcer whose specialty was creating play-by-play accounts of Chicago Cubs baseball games that the station received by wire.

Gene Autry poem by Jack Buck This is from a poem written by the famous radio announcer Jack Buck, the voice of the St. Louis Cardinals for over 50 years. This was written for Gene Autry's 83rd Birthday Party in 1990. There are many similarities to President Ronald Reagan (Author of what became in the California Governor's election to be known as the Republican
13th commandment---Thou Shalt Not Criticize another Republican):

The Last Cowboy

As America grew
and headed west,
Gene Autry was there
and he was the best.

He tapped telegraph keys
then starred on the screen,
the greatest Saturday star
young eyes had seen.

He wore a white hat
and the kids always knew
he'd do the right thing
they wanted him to.

He could shoot at a target
and invariably hit it
while jumping a river,
and he sand as he did it.

He crooned "South of the Border"
and sang on Christmas morn,
the most glamorous cowboy ever born.

His ride through life
is matched by no other,
a business tycoon,
yet everyone's brother.

He has enjoyed life to the fullest
and made our lives richer,
but he'd have traded it all
for a World Series pitcher.

We salute him today
and we'll love him tomorrow,
the last cowboy's life
was ours to borrow.

Little did he know
when he named his horse,
he was describing himself-
Champion, or course!




The object is to insert the numbers in the boxes to satisfy only one condition: each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the digits 1 through 9 exactly once. What could be simpler?



Daily Puzzle

How to play:

Refresh for current date:






See USA map, click to specific area, no commercials



Traffic Live---

Real Time Traffic Information

You can save up to 20 different routes and check them out with one click,
or type in a new route to learn the traffic live



Independent, unbiased and fair news about the Leasing Industry.
Ten Top Stories each week chosen by readers (click here)

Ask Andrew
Bank Beat
Computer Tips
Fernando's Review
Leasing 102
Online Newspapers
Sales Make it Happen
To Tell the Truth
View from the Top

Editorials (click here)