Thursday Numbers

People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing. – Dale Carnegie

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 Jon Tester, unemployment, ballot measure, the new union, Starbucks, oil prices, University of Montana, job approval rating, da bears, and much more!


U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.) has raised nearly $11.3 million for his reelection campaign. (MTN News)

The four Republicans running in a primary to challenge Tester have not raised enough money to merit their names being mentioned in this article…


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


A proposed ballot measure that would increase state tobacco taxes and extend Montana’s expanded Medicaid program for 94,000 low-income adults has been approved for signature-gathering. I-185, supported by a coalition of health and health-care organizations, would increase state taxes on a pack of cigarettes by $2, from the current $1.70 per pack to $3.70 per pack. (MTN News)

The taxes I like are the ones that I don’t have to pay…


The MEA/MFT and Montana Public Employees Association merged recently and will have a membership of nearly 24,000. The new union will be called the Montana Federation of Public Employees. (GF Tribune)

Union yes!


Starbucks will close 8,000 U.S. stores for an afternoon on May 29 to train workers in “racial-bias education.” Nearly 175,000 employees will undergo the training. (NBC News)

Plan ahead…


Oil prices rose to more than three year highs on Wednesday, with U.S. crude topping $68 a barrel for the first time since December 2014. (CNBC)

Well, the first thing you know old Jed’s a millionaire…


The University of Montana released a “Strategy for Distinction” this week that outlines potential cuts, and aims to put the flagship on a financially sustainable course. The preliminary recommendations call for cuts of an estimated 50 faculty over the course of three years. (Missoulian)


Americans’ job approval rating of the U.S. Congress is 18%, up slightly from two previous readings of 15%. (Gallup)

We’re running out of ways to tell members of Congress they suck...


That’s how many grizzly bears were spotted together Monday night 5 miles south of Choteau (MT) and 2-3 miles west of the highway. (GF Tribune)

I’ll bet they were going out to eat…



4 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. I guess a bunch of smokers in western MT will start making bulk buying trips to Sandpoint and CDA for smokes if this passes. Cig taxes in ID are about 50 cents per pack.

  2. “Strategy for Distinction” so bad, so close to sounding like Extinction. That was a very horrible read. So much nonsense speak. No wonder enrollment has dropped.

    • Mary – You’re right it does. The University of Montana has had a hard time overcoming the negative publicity of sexual assaults and how they were handled. I don’t know if they will ever overcome it. -JmB

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