Friday, February 10, 2006


Sometimes numbers can be very indicative of the 'personality' or a person, culture or group. Here are a few to give pause:

Amount (minimum) spent lobbying Congress in 2005: $3,000,000,000 (That’s as in BILLIONS)

Number of former members of Congress or federal agency heads who are now lobbyists: 240

Number of Americans who spend more than a quarter of their income on health care: 14,300,000 (That’s MILLIONS - and another 120 million or so have NO HEALTH CARE INSURANCE AT ALL)

Minimum number of EXXONMOBIL funded groups that have disputed mainstream scientific findings on climate change and global warming: 31

Total service charges collected by U.S. banks in 2004: $32,000,000,000

Number of America’s nine “Founding Fathers” who denied the “Divinity of Jesus”: 7

Number of illegitimate children fathered by those nine: 9

Number of US public school districts that have adopted a class in which the Bible is a primary textbook: 301

Rank, in the current line of succession to the US presidency, of the FIRST non-Christian: 16

Number of Alabama state senators co-sponsoring a bill last summer to “protect” public displays of the Ten Commandments: 10

Number of them who could list the Commandments: 1

Percentage of Bill Frist’s medical school class that sent him a letter accusing him of misusing his degree: 18

Days after Katrina hit that Dick Cheney’s office ordered an electric company to restore power to two oil pipelines: 1

Days after Hurricane Katrina that the White House authorized sending federal troops to New Orleans: 4

Years after the start of the Vietnam War that a majority of Americans first said it was a “mistake”: 3 1/2

Years after the start of the Iraq War that a majority said this: 1 1/4

Projected cost of disability payments to Iraq War veterans by 2050, based on rates for Gulf War veterans: $285,000,000,000 (That's in BILLIONS)

Number of “veterans of the global war on terrorism” that the VA budget assumed for 2005: 23,553

Estimated number today: 103,000

Number of consecutive years that the U.S. median income has failed to increase: 5

Number of consecutive years that the percentage of Americans living in poverty has increased: 4

Rank of 2004 among the most fiscally reckless years in U.S. history, according to the comptroller general: 1

Months of vacation that President Bush has taken in five years: 11

Source: Harper’s Index

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