Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For March 22, 2009

Percentage of Americans who admit they have dated someone with a higher position in their company, according to a survey by CareerBuilder.com: 34

Of those who have dated a higher-up in the last year, percentage of female workers who have dated their boss: 47

Percentage of males who have dated the boss: 38

Source: CareerBuilder.com.

Percentage of those Americans who say the "American dream" does not exist who also believe the powers that be don't care about people like them, according to a survey by Zogby: 44

Percentage who say Americans shouldn't think of themselves as special and entitled to an ideal life: 29

Source: Zogby International.

Percentage of U.S. couples who are finding that the worldwide financial crisis is affecting their relationships at home, causing them to argue more often, primarily about finances and household chores, according to PayPal's third annual "Can't Buy Me Love" international survey conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs: 43

In addition to arguing, percentage of couples surveyed who say they have ended a relationship due at least in part to financial issues: 11

Percentage of couples in the U.S. who are hiding purchases from their partners (18 percent in 2008) this year: 23

Source: Ipsos Public Affairs.

Percentage of all Easter chocolate sales for which women are responsible, as reported in the Daily Telegraph: 66

Percentage of these purchases that they eat before they share the rest: 60

Source: Christian Research Association.

Percentage drop in North American car and truck production in the first seven weeks of 2009 versus the same period in 2008, according to Viraf Baliwalla, a consumer advocate for car buyers and founder of Automall Network: 40 (From 2,157,688 units down to 886,614.)

Advertised cost of a Chevy Malibu with approximately $4,000 in manufacturer rebates: $22,000

Cost to the consumer for a brand-new midsize vehicle if the government were to match the rebates rather than handing out bailouts: $14,000

Source: Automall Network.

Percentage of American adults who have not lived outside of the state in which they were born, according to Pew Research: 57

Percentage who have never left their original hometown: 37

Source: Pewsocialtrends.org.

Percentage of Americans who feel very sympathetic or somewhat sympathetic toward the single woman in California with six children who recently gave birth to octuplets after undergoing in-vitro fertilization, according to a Gallup Poll: 26

Percentage who feel somewhat unsympathetic, or very unsympathetic: 70

Source: Gallup.

Number of intercity bus (motor coach) locations in the U.S., according to data released by the American Bus Association: 3,046

Number of airports: 604

Number of intercity rail stations: 525

On the list of the safest and greenest modes of transportation, rank of bus travel: 1

Source: American Bus Association.

Percentage of primary care physicians who reported that health care delivery will "get worse" in the next four years, after viewing video segments from President Obama's speech to Congress, according to a study conducted by HCD Research: 61

Percentage of respondents who indicated that skepticism was the emotion they felt most while watching President Obama outline his new health care reform plan: 49

Percentage who felt inspired: 21

Source: HCD Research Inc.

Percentage of respondents who say human error is the leading cause of information systems failure and fear that security attacks that exploit human error and breaches caused by distracted or disgruntled employees may be the root cause of information security failures in coming months, according to Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu's sixth annual survey of global financial institutions' information security efforts: 86

Percentage of respondents who expressed concern about insiders' misconduct: 36

Source: Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu.

Idle Thought

"It is impossible to enjoy idling thoroughly unless one has plenty of work to do." -- Jerome K. Jerome, humorist and playwright

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)bwr.eastlink.ca.)