Thursday Numbers

The greater the power, the more dangerous the abuse. – Edmund Burke

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 budget cuts, unemployment, Rocket Man, baseball, Stanislav Petrov, trust in the government, Mike Moustakas, Substance Use in Montana, NFL viewers, Missouri state trooper, U.S. Senate race, and much more!


That’s how much the governor’s budget director is recommending Montana agencies cut ($229 million) in general fund spending over the next two years to balance the state’s budget. (AP)

These cuts will hurt a lot of people.


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


That was the year Elton John’s song “Rocket Man” was released.

MRMGA – Donald Trump is “Making Rocket Man Great Again.”


That’s the speed of the ball that was hit by Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier that struck a young girl in the stands at Yankee Stadium. She was taken to a hospital. (ESPN)

All MLB baseball parks need protective netting to protect fans.


From CBS News and NPR

Stanislav Petrov was a lieutenant colonel in the Soviet Air Defence Forces on Sept. 26, 1983, when alarms went off signaling the U.S. had launched five missiles. Petrov interpreted the alert as a system malfunction, a call that likely stopped the Cold War from turning into a nuclear war. He was correct in his interpretation.

Petrov died in May at 77, his son confirmed Monday. He never received much recognition for his decision until much later – recognition that was greatly deserved.


That’s the percentage of Americans who trust the judicial branch of our government. As for the executive branch, 45% have trust. The legislative branch is trusted by just 35%. (Gallup)

Maybe it’s because two branches are made up of politicians…


Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas hit his 37th home run last night, breaking the Royals single-season home run record. The former record, held by Steve Balboni, stood for 32 years.(KCRoyals)

That’s about the best thing from this season for the Royals.


Montana Attorney General Tim Fox released the “Substance Use in Montana” report and one of the findings was that despite declining rates of DUI offenses, Montana still has high rates of impaired driving, which contributes to our unfortunate distinction as one of the states with the highest traffic fatality rate per capita. In 2015, there were 224 traffic fatalities in the state, 34% of which were alcohol-related according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

We need to devote more resources to DUI enforcement and not worry so much about texting and driving.


The viewership during the second week of NFL games was down 15% from the second week last year. The first week was down 12% from last year. (Hollywood Reporter)

It’s still summer – calm down!


Anthony Piercy, a Missouri state trooper, pleaded guilty in connection with the drowning death of a handcuffed man has been sentenced to just 10 days in prison. He will also do some community service and probation.

The state trooper handcuffed the 20-year-old suspect, Brandon Ellingson, and improperly put him in a life vest, prosecutors charged. The vest came off when a wave knocked Ellingson into the water, leading him to drown. (KC Star)

That does not seem nearly enough punishment.


So far, that’s how many candidates have indicated they will run in the U.S. Senate race next year. (KFBB)

The GOP primary will be fun with all the backstabbing!