Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For March 06, 2011

Ranks of Iran, North Korea, China and Afghanistan on the list of countries Americans are most likely to mention as being the United States' greatest enemy: 1, 2 (tie), 4

Source: Gallup.

Percentage of first-time managers who were actually groomed for the job, according to a study from Development Dimensions International: 10

Percentage of new managers who don't understand what it takes to succeed: 42

Percentage who took the role for an increase in compensation: 50

Percentage who actually wanted to lead others: 23

Source: Development Dimensions International.

When Americans were asked whether trends such as more births to single parents, more unmarried couples living together, more gay or lesbian couples raising children and more interracial marriages were acceptable changes, percentage who generally accept the changes, according to a report from the Pew Research Center: 31

Percentage who reject virtually every trend that the "accepters" tolerate or endorse: 32

Percentage who, while generally sharing most of the tolerant views of the "accepters," also express concern about the impact of these trends on society: 37

Source: Pew Research Center's Social & Demographic Trends.

Percentage of baby boomer clients who have postponed retirement due to the economic downturn, according to CPA financial planners surveyed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants: 50

Average number of years longer that they expect to work than they originally planned: 4

Source: American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Percentage of human resources managers who said technology etiquette breaches can affect a person's career prospects, according to a poll by Robert Half International: 76

Source: Robert Half International.

When asked if they love, hate or are indifferent toward their job, percentage of U.S. employees who reported that they love their job, according to an Ipsos Public Affairs-Randstad survey: 55

Percentage who say they hate it: 8

Percentage who are indifferent: 37

Source: Ipsos Public Affairs.

Amount of IBM Jeopardy! Challenge prize money to be donated to World Community Grid to fund global research that benefits humanity, according to IBM: $500,000

Number of personal computers from 535,000 volunteers in more than 80 countries by which the World Community Grid works by pooling the unused power: 1.7 million

Source: IBM Watson.

Year that a dairy cow named "Elm Farm Olli" became the first bovine passenger to fly in an airplane as part of the St. Louis International Air Exposition, where she was milked during the flight and the milk was parachuted to the ground in paper containers, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: 1930

Today, number of milk cows in the U.S. -- most of them permanently grounded: 9.2 million

Estimated number of pounds of milk they produce annually: 190 billion

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of Americans who agree that to jump-start investment and maintain U.S. competitiveness, the federal government should provide guarantees backing loans for building solar, wind, advanced-design nuclear power plants or other energy technology that reduces greenhouse gases, according to a survey conducted by Bisconti Research Inc./GfK Roper for the Nuclear Energy Institute: 79

Number of states where nuclear power plants operate: 31

Percentage of all U.S. electricity that is provided by these plants: 20

Source: Nuclear Energy Institute.

Percentage of small businesses that reported they are in a better financial position than one year ago, but that overall they remain cautious in recruitment plans, according to a nationwide survey from CareerBuilder: 51

Percentage of small businesses that plan to add full-time, permanent headcount in 2011: 21

Percentage of small businesses that expect to decrease full-time, permanent headcount: 6

Source: CareerBuilder.com.

Idle Thought

"It is better to prevent crimes than to punish them." -- Cesare Beccaria, philosopher and politician (1738-1794)

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