Thursday Numbers

Your attitude towards failure determines your altitude after failure. – John C. Maxwell

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 suicide prevention, unemployment, Dennis Hastert, classified briefings, NFL draft, ESPN, Montana AFL-CIO Convention, U.S. House poll, Presidential poll, national monuments, Dale Earnhardt, Jr, Rob Quist & Greg Gianforte, Kansas City Royals, Trump’s tax plan, and much more!


Montana Governor Steve Bullock signed a bill that allocates $1 million for suicide prevention over the next two years. (AP)

This is a very important program…


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


USA Today reported this week that former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, who is serving a 15-month federal prison sentence for bank fraud, had his $755 monthly pension for his service in the Illinois General Assembly terminated. Previously Hastert had his teachers’ retirement pension of $2,400 per month terminated.

Hastert acknowledged at his sentencing nearly a year ago that he had abused boys under his charge during his 16 years of coaching and teaching at a high school before launching his political career.

Don’t feel too bad for Hastert; he is still receiving about $73,000 per year from his service (1987-2007) in the U.S. House.


On Wednesday the President’s National Security team briefed 100 members of the U.S. Senate at the White House and then headed to Capitol Hill where they had invited 431 current House members to hear the same classified briefing about the North Korea threat. (

That means by about noon today all the classified information discussed in the briefing will have been leaked to the cable news stations…


The 2017 NFL draft begins tonight (Thursday) and concludes Saturday. It is being held in Philadelphia. There are seven rounds and 253 total selections in the draft. (NFL Spin Zone)

There will be several new millionaires today…


That’s about how many employees are being laid off at ESPN. (USA Today)

It does suck to lose your job…


The 61st Annual Montana AFL-CIO Convention will be June 1st – June 3rd at the Big Horn Resort in Billings, Montana. (

Union Yes!


According to a new poll from Emerson College, Republican Greg Gianforte is ahead of Democrat Rob Quist 52%-37% in the race for Montana’s vacant congressional seat. Libertarian Mark Wicks takes 5% of the vote, while 7% of Montana voters remain undecided. (Emerson College)

The Montana Cowgirl blog says the pollster favors Gianforte.


A recent CNN/ORC poll shows that 44% approve of the job President Donald J. Trump is doing, with 54% disapproving. CNN also reports that Trump has the lowest approval rating of any newly-elected president at this stage.

He may not have a high approval rating, but Trump’s first 100 days has been fun to write about. I just hope he does not kill us…


President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday to identify national monuments that can be rescinded or resized. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke told reporters that Trump’s order would require him to conduct the review of around 30 national monuments created over the past two decades, and recommend which designations should be lifted or altered. (Reuters)

The problem with the designation of National Monuments is many times there was little or no input from local officials and landowners.


That’s how many races Dale Earnhardt, Jr., has won in the NASCAR Cup Series. (Racing Reference) Earnhardt announced this week that he will be retiring at the end of this season.

Although he has not won that many races, he is a fan favorite. His retirement is not good news for NASCAR.


Lee Newspapers reports that Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks records show that Democrat Rob Quist hasn’t had a hunting or fishing license for at least 16 years. Electronic records of hunting and fishing licenses begin in 2002. Republican Greg Gianforte has had multiple fishing and hunting licenses during the same period.

Quist and Gianforte have sure shot up a bunch of computer monitors and televisions during this short campaign season. Instead of debating, they should have a contest to see who is the best sharpshooter.


As of Wednesday, the Kansas City Royals have lost seven games in a row. They have only won seven games this season.

Will manager Ned Yost last all season with his team playing so poorly?


President Donald Trump’s tax plan would eliminate the seven existing income tax brackets and replace them with three brackets, containing new rates of 10 percent, 25 percent, and 35 percent, based on someone’s income. (WaPo)

I heard they may give everyone a pony if it passes…



7 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. I don’t know where you get all of your headline pictures. I am a prairie person as you can tell by my email. I enjoy all your different choices.

    • LJohn 58: Thanks. All the photos were taken by me (usually with my cellphone) and they are mostly from Montana. -JmB

    • Craig – I wonder how one can go about getting a gig there. I can sing karaoke…Haha -JmB

      • I haven’t met a single Western Montanan who thinks Quist stands for Montana values…he won’t even come out here to talk to us. Ginaforte has been here 3 times!

      • Barry – Thanks. Is that three times as a House candidate or three times for both campaigns? -JmB

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