Thursday Numbers

I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion. – Alexander the Great

Welcome to “Thursday Numbers!” In case you’re a first-time visitor, this is the weekly column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm.

This week’s topics include Great Falls city commission, unemployment, Berkeley Pit, Jeff Choate & the MSU Bobcats, Klay Thompson, healthcare, Montana road projects, College Football Playoffs, Fort Harrison VA Medical Center, and much more!


The Great Falls Tribune reported that the Great Falls City Commission voted against Calumet Montana Refining Company’s application to use a tax abatement benefit to reduce property taxes for the next decade on its recent $450 million expansion. The tax benefit would reduce the city’s property taxes on the oil refinery by $6.3 million for the next decade.

I’m guessing if they approved it, the commissioners would need the police department to write a whole lot more cell phone violation tickets…


That’s how many people filed new claims for unemployment last week. (USDOL)


That’s the estimate of how many geese landed in the Berkeley Pit near Butte, Montana, at the end of November. Thousands of geese will die because the Berkeley Pit is a Superfund site and the water is highly contaminated from mining. (WaPo)

I wonder if the lead goose was fired for landing there…


Montana State Bobcat head football coach Jeff Choate has an incentive in his contract that gives him an extra $10,000 for “Beating the University of Montana.” (Missoulian)

I wonder what Choate gets for finishing the season with a 4-7 record…


Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson erupted for a career-high 60 points in a 142-106 win over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night. He played for just 29 minutes. (ESPN)


Slightly more Americans agree (52%) than disagree (45%) that the federal government is responsible for making sure all Americans have healthcare coverage. (Gallup)

Next year the Republicans will control the U.S. House, the U.S. Senate, and the White House. I’m sure they will take care of us…


That’s how many Montana road projects, worth $144.5 million, are being delayed because the state faces a budget shortfall. (Helena IR)

Don’t even think of raising fuel taxes….


On Nov. 8, PRWeek published “They’re with her: PR execs predict a resounding Clinton victory,” in which reported the pre-election predictions of 22 communications professional – not one of whom predicted Donald Trump would win the election. (

Many people predicted Clinton would win (me included)…


The four teams in the College Football Playoffs are Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, and Washington. #1 Alabama and #4 Washington play December 31 in the Peach Bowl.
#2 Clemson and #3 Ohio State play December 31 in the Fiesta Bowl. (ESPN)

The winners play for the National Championship on Monday, January 9.


As of 2016, Fort Harrison VA Medical Center near Helena, Montana, was rated as a two-star facility (out of five stars) according to Mike Garcia, public affairs officers for the VA Montana Health Care System. (GF Tribune)

Montana veterans deserve better…


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2 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. Heh heh. ‘lead’ goose

    What about the arsenic goose, cadmium goose, etc?

    But seriously folks, it’s a shame that more can’t be done with that mess. I’m sure T Rump’s new EPA chief will get right on it.

    • Doug: Haha – Good catch on “lead” – I’ll take credit for it! I agree that more needs to be done. Someone should be able to find someway to keep waterfowl off the polluted water. -JmB

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