Friday, April 3, 2009


Between 1840 and 1960, US presidents who were elected in years ending in '0' were either assassinated or have died of natural causes while in office. This 20 year death cycle had been appreciated for many decades. An edition of Ripley's Believe It or Not, published in 1934, noted the coincidental 20 year pattern of presidential deaths between 1840 and 1920, with question marks inserted for the upcoming 1940 entry. This implied that there could be a continuation of the cyclic pattern, which was fulfilled when Franklin Roosevelt was re-elected in 1940 and subsequently died in office in 1945. Based on this 20 year death cycle, several astrologers correctly predicted the death of President John F Kennedy when he was elected in 1960. Similarly, it was expected that President Reagan would also die in office, which almost came to pass with the attempted assassination on March 30, 1981. This marked the end of the 20 death cycle, as President George W Bush completed his full term in office.
Strangely, two Presidents, who were elected in years ending in ‘0’ -- Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D Roosevelt -- both died in their following term after being re-elected in the ‘4’ ended year. Therefore, the 20 year death cycle anticipated the successful re-election of these presidents to the oval office.
Using the Fisher Exact Probability test, the presidential death cycle was shown to yield a significance level of 0.00004, thus confirming that the cycle was very unlikely to occur by chance. A mathematician, Michael Capobianco, applied a more conservative methodology and still produced significance at p < .01. The 20 year death cycle appears to be more than just coincidence, especially as only one president between 1840 and 1960 died in office and was not elected in a '0' year. The exception was Zachary Taylor, who became president in 1848 and died of a stomach ailment in 1850. The cause of death was suspicious and it was speculated he had been poisoned with arsenic. In 1991, his body was exhumed to investigate this theory, but the findings proved negative.
President Elected In
1800 Jefferson
Survived: Died July 4, 1826.
1820 Monroe
Survived: Died July 4, 1831.
1840, Harrison
April 4, 1841. Pneumonia
1860, Lincoln
April 15, 1865. Assassinated
1880, Garfield
July 2, 1881. Assassinated
1900, McKinley
September 19, 1901. Assassinated
1920, Harding
August 2, 1923. Food poisoning
1940, Roosevelt
April 12, 1945. Stroke, medical records missing
1960, Kennedy
November 22, 1963. Assassinated
1980, Reagan
Survived: March 30, 1981. Assassination attempt.Died: June 5, 2004.
2000, Bush
Adding to the mystery, there have been attempted assassinations on various presidents - Andrew Jackson 1835, Franklin D Roosevelt 1933, Harry Truman 1950, Gerald Ford (two separate attempts in Sept 1975) and Ronald Reagan (1981). (John Taylor survived a shipboard explosion in 1844, but this may have been an accident.) Of the attempted assassinations, only Ronald Reagan was elected in a '0' year compared with four successful murders within the 20 year cycle. Additionally, vice presidents only attained the presidency outside the curse on two occasions - Millard Fillmore after the death of Zachary Taylor in 1850 and Gerald Ford after the resignation of Richard Nixon in 1973 following the Watergate scandal


Self-esteem is all about how much people value themselves, the pride they feel in themselves, and how worthwhile they feel. Self-esteem is important because feeling good about yourself can affect how you act. A person who has high self-esteem will make friends easily, is more in control of his or her behavior, and will enjoy life more.
Body image is how someone feels about his or her own physical appearance.
For many people, especially those in their early teens, body image can be closely linked to self-esteem. That's because as kids develop into teens, they care more about how others see them.
What Influences a Person's Self-Esteem?
Some teens struggle with their self-esteem when they begin puberty because the body goes through many changes. These changes, combined with a natural desire to feel accepted, mean it can be tempting for people to compare themselves with others. They may compare themselves with the people around them or with actors and celebs they see on TV, in movies, or in magazines.
But it's impossible to measure ourselves against others because the changes that come with puberty are different for everyone. Some people start developing early; others are late bloomers. Some get a temporary layer of fat to prepare for a growth spurt, others fill out permanently, and others feel like they stay skinny no matter how much they eat. It all depends on how our genes have programmed our bodies to act.
The changes that come with puberty can affect how both girls and guys feel about themselves. Some girls may feel uncomfortable or embarrassed about their maturing bodies. Others may wish that they were developing faster. Girls may feel pressure to be thin but guys may feel like they don't look big or muscular enough.
Outside Influences
It's not just development that affect self-esteem, though. Lots of other factors (like media images of skinny girls and bulked-up guys) can affect a person's body image too.
Family life can sometimes influence a person's self-esteem. Some parents spend more time criticizing their kids and the way they look than praising them. This criticism may reduce a person's ability to develop good self-esteem.
People may also experience negative comments and hurtful teasing about the way they look from classmates and peers. Sometimes racial and ethnic prejudice is the source of such comments. Although these often come from ignorance, sometimes they can affect another person's body image and self-esteem.