Thursday Numbers

Thanks for stopping by for your weekly dose of “Thursday Numbers!”

NOTICE: There are no secret waiting lists here at The Western Word.

If you are a first-time visitor, “Thursday Numbers” is the column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary (sometimes spiked with sarcasm) just to make you smile, shake your head, or make you send me nasty e-mails.

This week I write about unemployment, veterans, cadets, Malmstrom AFB, Great Falls Deputy City Manager Jennifer Reichelt, Montana GOP convention, Maya Angelou, Montana State Parks, Affordable Care Act, CMR’s Lindsay Martinez, centrist Republicans in Montana, Montana U.S. House Debate, Electric City Rugby club’s Lady Havoc, Simms Rugby, and much more!


That’s the number of new claims for unemployment filed last week, which is 27,000 less than the previous week. (Source)


That’s at least how many military veterans were waiting to see a doctor who were never scheduled for an appointment and never placed on a wait list at the Veterans Affairs facility in Phoenix. (Source)



That’s how many cadets graduated from West Point Wednesday. (Source)

I salute you!


According to the Malmstrom AFB public affairs office, “A rescue helicopter crew from Malmstrom Air Force Base’s 40th Helicopter Squadron flew two consecutive search and rescue missions May 25, leading to the successful recovery of two hikers from the Montana wilderness. The separate incidents are recorded as the squadron’s 400th and 401st saves.”

Congrats on the great job 40th Helicopter Squadron!


According to the Great Falls Tribune, “Great Falls Deputy City Manager Jennifer Reichelt, arrested on suspicion of a DUI in October, has pleaded guilty to a lesser reckless driving charge in Cascade County Justice Court.” Her fine was $335. It was also reported that her “license was also revoked for a six-month period following her arrest because she refused to take a breath test.”

This seems like a pretty sweet deal for Reichelt. I’m thinking Reichelt will be a leading candidate for my Making Montana Proud award in tomorrow’s Caught My Eye. She already won the award for her initial charge.


That was the average wait time (115 days) for military veterans at the Veterans Affairs facility in Phoenix for their first primary care appointment. It was also reported that approximately 84 percent of veterans waited more than the 14-day goal set by the VA. (Source)



According to the Montana GOP, that is the price for the rooms (plus tax) at the 2014 Montana Republican Convention which is June 19-21 in Billings. The price goes up to $122 after June 4.

With so much fighting and backstabbing in the Montana GOP, this might be the political convention to attend. To raise money, they should have cage matches between the Tea Party and centrist Republicans…


Author and poet Maya Angelou died Wednesday morning at age 86.

My favorite quote; “We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated.”


Montana is celebrating the 75th anniversary of its state parks system this summer and Gov. Steve Bullock is urging residents to go out and explore. (Source)

It’s time for you to get lost…in Montana! 


That’s the percentage of people who support the Affordable Care Act. 51% disapprove of it. This is according to a recent Gallup poll.


According to Gallup, “More than a third of Americans (37%) believe people become gay as a result of factors such as their upbringing and environment, while 42% say people are born gay.” (Source)


C.M. Russell High’s Lindsay Martinez won the Class AA girls’ state singles tennis title, finishing the season with a 31-0 record. Martinez is a junior. (Source)

Very impressive season! Congrats.


According to Lee Newspapers, “A political group formed by centrist Republicans in Montana has fired the latest salvo in an ongoing battle between competing GOP factions, sending out new campaign mailers attacking the more-conservative-leaning Republicans in nearly 20 legislative primary races across the state.”

Politics is a contact sport…


The five Republican candidates for Montana’s U.S. House seat debated in Kalispell Wednesday night. According to the Associated Press, the debate was “hosted by Glacier Country Forum and the Montana chapter of Americans for Prosperity, an advocacy group funded by the billionaire Koch brothers.”

According to two articles I read, Ryan Zinke must be the frontrunner, as it seemed he was getting attacked more from the other four candidates.


The Electric City (Great Falls) Rugby Club Lady Havoc high school rugby team finished second in the 2014 MYRA Girls State Rugby Tournament recently. (Source)



The Simms High School boys’ rugby team is number one! They recently won the state boys’ rugby championship. (Source)


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7 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. In regards to Ms. Reichelt’s plea, while it may be a sweet deal it is not at all unusual. Probably more the norm than the exception.

    • Rick – Thanks for your comments. You’re probably correct, but that does little to deter DUIs. Stop by The Western Word on Friday for more of my thoughts about Ms. Reichelt. -JmB

      • I completely agree but also understand that it is an issue of both judicial and financial expediency. I enjoy your blog even if I don’t always agree. Keep up the good work.

  2. Give the veterans vouchers and let them go to their local hospitals and Doctors. What could be more simple than that to cut waiting periods?

    • Dave – sometimes the easiest things are the hardest…-JmB

      • Dave, You are spot on! Let the vet chose where to go get the help they need. I have heard that said before but no response from the VA to make that offer!

  3. 43- A good follow-up questions would be; How many of the 43% receive subsidized healthcare through Obamacare? It would be good to ask the 51% as well. I bet there is a correlation there…Reading the study shows that Democrats approve of Obamacare at a high rate of 79% and across town, only 8% of Republicans approve.In my mind, if the program were doing what it was supposed to do, you wouldn’t see such a wide partisan divide!

    The VA system is a time tested example of government run healthcare in the US. What the VA has now is what the Democrats want us all to have, a single payer program. What is going on and what has been going on for a long time in the VA is reason enough to not go to a signal payer program. Ask anyone outside the US about government run healthcare and you will soon realize it is the wrong path to be on.

    While we needed to address how to insure those without insurance, it could easily been done with reinventing the whole system Too much change, too fast, done by people behind closed doors.

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