Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For April 03, 2011

Percentage of Americans who prioritize economic growth over environmental protection, according to a Gallup Poll: 54

In a 2000 Gallup Poll on the environment, percentage of Americans who favored the environment over the economy: 67

Source: Gallup.

Number of questions across five categories (American government, systems of government, rights and responsibilities, American history and integrated civics) that are asked in the U.S. citizenship test: 100

When the test was administered to 1,000 American adults, percentage who could not qualify to be a citizen of their own country, according to survey results published by Newsweek magazine: 38

Percentage who couldn't name the current vice president: 29

Percentage who were not aware that the U.S. has a capitalist economic system: 67

Source: Newsweek.

Percentage of working parents who are frequently burning a candle on both ends when it comes to juggling a career and kids, according to a national survey commissioned by Care.com Inc.: 44

Percentage of working parents who revealed that they are too stressed from managing their jobs and their families to go to the gym, call a friend or have sex with their spouses: 62

Percentage who reported that they would leave their current jobs for less or considerably less money if that would provide more flexibility in their lives: 25

Source: Care.com.

Percentage of Americans living within 50 miles of a nuclear reactor who do not know "what to do in the event of a nuclear reactor emergency," such as the evacuation route and what other steps to take, according to a major new survey conducted by ORC International for the nonprofit and nonpartisan Civil Society Institute: 52

Percentage of Americans who say they live within 50 miles of a nuclear power reactor: 24

Source: CSI.

Percentage of Americans who believe it is possible for a middle income family to save for a secure retirement, according to a Country Financial survey: 28

Percentage of respondents who indicate they are decreasing the amount they are putting away for their golden years: 43

Source: Country Financial.

Percentage of CFOs who cited time management due to competing priorities as their biggest work challenge, according to a survey developed by Robert Half Management Resources: 38

Percentage who said "keeping up with technology" is their biggest challenge: 30

Source: Robert Half Management Resources.

While 28.9 percent of the nation's population was in poverty for at least two months between the start of 2004 and the end of 2006, percentage who were poor during the entire period, according to a report released by the U.S. Census Bureau: 2.8

For those who were in poverty for two or more consecutive months from 2004 to 2006, median length of a poverty spell: 4.5 months

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of new-car shoppers who indicate that they plan to finance some or all of the cost of their next vehicle purchase, according to Kelley Blue Book: 66

Percentage of shoppers who say they plan to pay the entire cost of their next vehicle in cash: 34

Source: Kelley Blue Book.

Despite the fact that women tend to face higher health care expenses in retirement due to their greater longevity, percentage of women who think they will need to accumulate less than $250,000 for retirement, according to the 21st annual Retirement Confidence Survey by the Employment Benfit Research Institute: 35

Percentage of men who think the same: 26

Percentage of women who say they do not know how much they will need to save: 12

Percentage of men who say the same thing: 5

Source: EBRI.

Percentage of U.S. consumers who have already significantly reduced discretionary spending because of the increase in gas prices, according to the RBC Consumer Outlook Index: 32

Source: Ipsos Public Affairs.

Idle Thought

"To know how to say what other people only think is what makes men poets and sages." -- Elizabeth Rundle Charles, writer

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