Thursday Numbers

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. – P. J. O’Rourke

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 Mega Millions, unemployment, goats, Anthony Kennedy, Planned Parenthood, KRTV, a second civil war, Congressional leadership ratings, and much more!


That’s the jackpot for the next Mega Millions lottery drawing Friday night. (


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


That’s how many goats are “deployed” to Malmstrom AFB to help control weeds this summer. (KRTV)

I guess the weeds are pretty baaaad…


That’s the age of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy who announced he was retiring after more than 30 years on the U.S. Supreme Court. (NY Times)

Get your popcorn ready – the battle to replace him will be interesting,


Sixty-two percent of Americans hold a favorable opinion of Planned Parenthood, the powerful pro-choice group whose high-profile role in the abortion debate has thrust it into the news once again this month. (Gallup)

Planned Parenthood does a lot of good things.


KRTV in Great Falls is celebrating 60 years on the air. (KRTV)



Thirty-one percent (31%) of Likely U.S. Voters say it’s likely that the United States will experience a second civil war sometime in the next five years, with 11% who say it’s Very Likely. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 59% consider a second civil war unlikely, but that includes only 29% who say it’s Not At All Likely. (Rasmussen)

Wait, won’t one side have all the guns if there’s a next civil war?


That’s the favorable rating of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. His unfavorable rating is 50%. Nancy Pelosi is 29/53%, Chuck Schumer is 29/44%, and Paul Ryan is 40/45%. (Gallup)

I think McConnell is one of the worst leaders in Senate history.