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13 Sep 2011 10:49


U.S.: U.S. poverty rate: Nearly one in seven people live in poverty

  • 15.1% the poverty rate in the U.S. back in 1993 — the highest level in 20 years
  • 11.3% the poverty rate in 2000 — the lowest it’s been in the modern era
  • 15.1% the poverty rate in 2010 — MATCHING the 1993 high source
  • » What these numbers mean: The current poverty line in the U.S. is $22,314 a year for a family of four and $11,139 for an individual, so anyone making less than that falls into these numbers. To put this into hard numbers, that means 46.2 million people are living below the poverty line. As for the middle class, their median income is $49,445 — actually down just a little bit from the year before. (Editor’s note: We just clarified the poverty line numbers.)

23 Nov 2010 21:27


U.S.: TSA topic du jour: How much we pay the terror-stopping workers

  • $14/hour the amount newly hired TSA employees make to do their high-pressure front-line jobs that involve feeling up people’s junk and ensuring that no bombs get on planes
  • 37% the percentage of TSA workers that work part-time at Chicago O’Hare Airport; the job would pay the equivalent of $29,000 a year if they worked full-time source
  • » Let’s give them raises! You know what’s really sad? These TSA jobs are treated like working at retail (complete with turnover), even at a time when government workers are getting paid more than they’ve ever been. And that’s even considering that they arguably have a more important job than many bureaucrats. Fun fact: If you took the $168 million that the government has planned to, or used for, these full-body scanners and divided it amongst the 56,000 workers on staff as of 2009, it would be the same as giving each worker $2,988 of extra income, or $28 more each week over the next two years. That’s money which we’re sure they’d appreciate, considering they’re attempting to stop bombs and terrorists from getting on planes.

25 May 2010 11:07


Biz: Private businesses less responsible for people’s income than ever

  • 41.9% of personal income comes from private wages and salaries
  • 17.9%of personal income comes from government programs source


  • » What this means: Simply put, it’s an unsustainable trend. The government raises money through taxes on wages and salaries, and with many people out of work and benefits making up a larger share of personal income, the government is on the hook for more of people’s collective personal incomes. Part of this, yes, is due to the stimulus. Once the economy gets back in tip-top shape, will the numbers go up? Maybe. But the numbers were going down even before the recession due to the increase in benefits.

22 Apr 2010 20:13


Tech: Microsoft’s great quarter not amazing; Wall Street whines loudly

  • +6% Microsoft’s boost in sales this quarter, a new record for the company
  • +35% Microsoft’s rise in income this quarter, great but not eye-popping
  • -4.5% fall in share prices after the news; where’s the love, guys? source

01 Feb 2010 08:51


Biz: Exxon Mobil has a crappy quarter of not-record profits

  • 23% decline in their massive oil-driven profits source

23 Jan 2010 10:24


Culture: Good luck: Bristol Palin tries for child support from Levi Johnston

  • $100,000 Levi’s 2009 income (?!)
  • $1,750 amount in child support she’s asking from Levi Johnston per month
  • $4,400 amount Bristol Palin claims Levi has paid for Tripp’s child support
  • $10k amount Levi’s lawyer claims he’s paid in child support already source

14 Jan 2010 10:39


Biz, U.S.: Obama’s bank plan: Lots of money for the U.S., with perks!

  • $90 billion in bank taxes over the next ten years source
  • So what happens if the banks overpay the bailouts? Simple. The money goes back to the U.S. to help strengthen the financial position that was screwed up by the bailout crisis. Did someone say “win-win” situation, kids? The banks don’t think so, by the way, and angrily responded to the new charges like petulant children who didn’t get a Nintendo 64 for Christmas.

06 Jan 2010 10:12


Biz: Cable TV is going to eat up larger amounts of your money over time

  • $75 average cost of digital cable for subscribers each month
  • 5% average increase in cable prices each painful, depressing year
  • $95 the expected average cost of digital cable in five years; blech source

03 Jan 2010 11:00


U.S.: Crazy: Some poor people subside on zero cash income

  • 6 million people get by on food stamps … and nothing else source

22 Dec 2009 09:25


Tech: Tapulous taps a pretty penny out of the iPhone App Store

  • $1 million a month in download-related sales; not bad source