Thursday Numbers

Life is like an elevator: On your way up, sometimes you have to stop and let some people off. ― Ziad K. Abdelnour

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 the U.S. budget deficit, Mega Millions and Powerball, Montana’s U.S. Senate race, Montana At-Large race, unemployment, deportation cases, Chris Collins (NY-27), National Basketball Association, stricter firearm laws, campaign material, Trump’s spending cuts, Major League Baseball playoffs, and much more!


The Treasury Department said the U.S. budget deficit grew to $779 billion in Donald Trump’s first full fiscal year as president, the result of the GOP’s tax cuts, bipartisan spending increases and rising interest payments on the national debt. That’s a 77 percent increase from the $439 billion deficit in fiscal 2015 when Senator Mitch McConnell became majority leader. (Bloomberg)

It looks like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are things they will try to cut and label it as “reform.”


That’s the jackpot ($900 million) for the Mega Millions lottery on Friday night. (Mega Millions)

Just imagine all the people who would become your friends if you won…


That’s the jackpot ($430 million) for the Powerball lottery on Saturday night. (

You can’t win unless you play…


Outside groups and individual donors have poured more than $45 million into Montana’s U.S. Senate race as President Donald Trump prepares a third trip to the Big Sky state in his crusade to unseat two-term Democratic Sen. Jon Tester. (AP)

Isn’t free speech marvelous?


Montana At-Large U.S. House candidate Kathleen Williams (D) reported having $1.2 million on hand at the beginning of October, compared to incumbent Republican Greg Gianforte’s $397,000. (AP)

I think we’re all waiting to hear about Gianforte loaning his campaign a million or two.


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


That’s how many deportation cases were terminated this summer after the U.S. Supreme Court made a ruling because the paperwork that was sent to those affected did not list a date/time to appear in court. (Reuters)

This mess is far from over.


That’s how much money ($80) indicted Republican Representative Chris Collins (NY-27) raised from individuals from within his district this past quarter. (Roll Call)

Ironically, it looks like this race will be close.


The 73rd National Basketball Association (NBA) season started this week. Teams will play 82 regular season games. The playoffs begin April 13, 2019. (Wikipedia)

Go Celtics!


Gallup Polling reported this week that sixty-one percent of Americans favor stricter laws on the sale of firearms, down modestly from March, when 67% said this shortly after the Parkland, Florida, school shooting on Feb. 14. The current reading is similar to the 60% measured last fall after the Las Vegas mass shooting. Along with March, it reflects the highest percentage to favor tougher firearms laws in two or more decades.

I own guns and I think we need stricter laws on the sale of firearms.


Last week I said that I had received 30 pieces of campaign material at my house regarding candidates or issues on the November ballot.

Now I am up to 48 pieces.



President Donald Trump asked all secretaries in his Cabinet on Wednesday to reduce their spending by five percent for fiscal year 2020, as the administration announced the federal budget deficit has surged to its highest level in six years. (Fox News)

Maybe those tax cuts were not that great of an idea…


There are four teams left in the 2018 Major League Baseball (MLB) playoffs. In the American League, we have the Boston Red Sox and the Houston Astros. In the National League, we have the Milwaukee Brewers and the Los Angeles Dodgers. (

Who you got?