A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

May 17, 2009

From the 1990 Census to the 2000 Census, the percentage of Americans who said they worked from home went up 0.3 percent.
Source: Census Bureau

May 16, 2009

From the 1990 Census to the 2000 Census, there was little change in the transportation Americans used to get to work: The percentage who drove alone went up 2.5 percent, and those using public transportation went down 0.5 percent.
Source: Census Bureau

Drop in the Bucket? See for Yourself.

In our "What’s in a Number" post on May 7, we noted a clever video by Salt Lake City software developer Matt Shapiro, showing how little $100 million in savings would amount to when compared with the $3.6 trillion in federal spending being proposed by President Obama (about one-quarter of a penny on the scale of the budget being equal to $100.)
Now Matt has come up with a second video to help us wrap our brains around the latest figures.

Health Savings Still Optimistic

Back when he was courting voters, then-candidate Barack Obama boasted that his health care plan would save the typical family "up to $2,500" a year. And May 13, as President Obama, he repeated the claim, this time relying both on undefined "comprehensive reform" and a cost-control promise by the insurance and medical industries to garner such benefits:

Obama, May 13: On Monday I met with representatives of the insurance and the drug companies, doctors and hospitals,

May 15, 2009

Cherrapunji Assam, India, has amassed several world records for precipitation. In two years, 1860 and 1861, it recorded 1,605.05 inches.
Source: NOAA

Crime to Denounce Homosexuality?

Q: Would the "hate crimes" bill make it a crime to denounce homosexuality from the pulpit and give legal protection to pedophiles?
A: No on both counts. The First Amendment is still operative, and pedophiles would get no breaks under this bill.

Cheney’s Gitmo Recidivism Claims

Former Vice President Dick Cheney used his May 10 appearance on CBS’ "Face the Nation" to, once again, strongly defend the Bush administration’s handling of alleged terrorists taken into U.S. custody. At one point, to back up his characterization of Guantanamo Bay detainees as ultra-bad guys, Cheney claimed that detainees sent home from Gitmo had already demonstrated significant recidivism: "We released hundreds already of the less threatening types. About 12 percent of them, nonetheless, went back into the fight as terrorists."

May 14, 2009

The world record for the amount of rain to fall in 1 minute is 1.5 inches in Barot Guadeloupe, West Indies, on Nov. 26, 1970.
Source: NOAA

More on Mexican Guns

After we posted our April 17 story ("Counting Mexico’s Guns") pointing out the absence of data to back up statements from Obama administration officials (including the president), journalists and others that 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the U.S, we still had a few questions about the tracing process. At the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), we sat down with Charles Houser, chief of the agency’s National Tracing Center,

May 13, 2009

The most precipitation to fall in one year in the U.S. is 739 inches, which was recorded in Kukui on the Hawaiian island of Kauai from December 1981 to December 1982.
Source: NOAA’s National Weather Service