April 2018

The Good American

By Warren Shoen

 

Bits & Pieces

By Jeff Torrison

  • State legislators elected US Senators until 1913 when the ratification of the 17th Amendment mandated these elections to be subject to popular vote.
  • Each US penny cost an average of 1.6 cents to manufacture in 2017 according to an article in the March 19, 2018, issue of The Wall Street Journal.
  • “Annie Hall” received the Academy Award for best picture in 1978. One of the movies it was competing against for the award was “Star Wars,” which begat eight sequels (with a ninth on the way).
  • The Masters Golf Tournament began in 1934 as the “Augusta National Invitational” before switching to its current name in 1939. Jack Nicklaus holds the record for Masters wins at six.
  • Alaska has the fewest farms in the US with 760, followed by Rhode lsland and Delaware. Hawaii is ranked 44th in the number of farms with about 7,000.
  • About 40% of Division I men’s basketball players transfer to another school by the end of their sophomore year per the NCAA. About half of them go to another Division I program and the rest move on to a lower NCAA division.
  • JPMorgan has about $1.2 trillion in deposits; its earnings on cash management and treasury services are about 80% of what it makes on its commercial loan portfolio according to an April 4, 2018, article in The Wall Street Journal.
  • In 1910 William Howard Taft became the first US President to throw out the ceremonial first pitch on the opening day of the Major League Baseball season. In 1950 President Harry Truman, who was ambidextrous, threw one pitch right-handed and one left-handed on opening day.
  • Every state in the country reported having snow on April 7, 1857 (there were then 31 states) according to meteorologist Paul Douglas.