Archive for the ‘Demograhics’ Category

No wonder that I’m always looking over my shoulder…

February 24, 2020

Forbes reported an MIT study that ranked cities by how liberal or conservative they were.


Of course, San Francisco topped the list.

Which other cities made the top 10?


Smart states voted for Hillary, dumb states voted for Trump … right?

December 3, 2019

A friend sent along a study by an organization called SafeHome that ranks states by their relative “smartness”.

More specifically, the study used a formula that “takes into account college degrees, high school graduation, professional or advanced degrees and test scores to create a smartest states ranking.”

So, “smartness” isn’t just native IQ, it’s opportunity and achievement, too.

Without quibbling over the criteria or the formula, here is the answer:

imageclick to see the state by state details

I suspect that my friend was multi-motivated, sending me the study because (1) it’s interesting, (2) New Jersey — her home state — topped the list, and (3) it would prove that smart voted for HRC and dumb voted for DJT.

Of course, I had to drill down to see if #3 is true…


Why some millennials are fleeing the cities…

October 16, 2019

In a prior post, we reported  that census numbers are showing signs that urban millennials are starting to flee to the suburbs … and beyond.

According to the WSJ …

For the fourth consecutive year, U.S. census figures have shown that thousands of millennials and younger Gen Xers are leaving big cities.

Since 2014 an average of about 30,000 residents between 25 and 39 have left big cities annually.


Not exactly a groundswell … but, perhaps, an early indicator of the “next new trend for workers with mobile jobs: moving to a small town to improve our quality of life.”

A commentary in the weekend WSJ breathed some life into the trend…


What’s the impact of declining birthrates on future college enrollments?

October 15, 2019

And, how should colleges brace for the changes?

According to Nathan Grawe, a professor of social sciences at Minnesota’s Carleton College …

A declining birthrate means the currently typical college-going population could decline by more than 15 percent starting about 2026.

The impact: schools will need to tightened their cost belts, aggressively recruit students and do a better job retaining and graduating their enrollees … or close down.


Let’s unpack Grawe’s argument…


Millennials going suburban?

September 27, 2019

That’s what the WSJ concludes based on recently released census data.

Specifically …

“Large U.S. cities lost tens of thousands of millennial and younger Gen X residents last year.

The sustained declines signal a sharp reversal from the beginning of the decade, when young adults flooded into cities and helped lead an urban revival.

New York, Chicago, Houston, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Washington and Portland, Ore., were among those losing large numbers of residents in the 25 to 39 age group.”


So, what’s going on?


Americans are decreasingly willing )or able) to move … “mobility” in sharp decline.

June 11, 2019

According to NextGov:

Mobility in the United States has fallen to record lows.

In 1985, nearly 20 percent of Americans had changed their residence within the preceding 12 months, but by 2018, fewer than ten percent had.

That’s the lowest level since 1948, when the Census Bureau first started tracking mobility.


What’s going on?


Why are Asian-American students dominating “elite” schools?

March 15, 2019

No, they don’t buy-off sports coaches and abuse standardized testing procedures. 

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (“TJ” for short), is a selective DC-area magnet school designed to provide an elite, high-tech education for the most academically gifted students in Northern Virginia.

The school offers rigorous study in advanced college-level offerings like electrodynamics, neurobiology, and artificial intelligence.

High octane academics, for sure … offered to the best and brightest.

What’s the rub?

Demographic mix.


The school’s newly accepted Class of 2022 is 65 percent Asian, 23 percent white, five percent Hispanic, and two percent black.


20 years ago, the concern was that Black and Hispanic representation at TJ was less than half their demographic mix in Fairfax County – the “feeder” county.

Several initiatives were launched to increase Black and Hispanic representation, including early identification and proactive outreach to high potential minority children; supplementary in-school and extracurricular programs to teach and mentor them; and more ready access to prep and gateway courses such as Algebra.

While undertaking those initiatives, something unexpected happened.

The numbers of Black and Hispanic students applying and enrolled at TJ remained stalled at the pre-initiative levels. So, that’s still a concern.

But, during the same time period (and unrelated to the minority initiatives), the number of white students declined sharply … and the number of Asian-American students has soared.

Why is that?


Economist: The demography of American voters…

November 13, 2018

Conclusion: All politics is “identity politics”.


The Economist and YouGov, a pollster, have surveyed thousands of Americans and built a statistical model to predict political party preferences.

Think: generic ballot for Congressional elections.

What did they find?

America’s founding fathers envisioned a republic in which free-thinking voters would carefully consider the proposals of office-seekers.

Today, however, demography seems to govern voters’ choices.

Specifically, Economist and YouGov identified a dozen demographic characteristics that highly predicted how people would vote in Congressional elections.


Let’s drill down on the the findings…


“When are things going to get fair?”

January 17, 2018

A hotel employee asked me that pointed question …


This is a story with a happy ending …

We were on a family road trip, staying at the Marriott Courtyard in Princeton, NJ.


After working out, my wife and I looked around for the usual coffee-in-the-lobby.

Not seeing any, we approached the front desk and asked where the coffee was.

The desk person said that the pay-for-coffee restaurant would be opening in 15 minutes.

A very nice lady standing behind the desk clerk offered: “Interested in a complementary cup  of coffee? Follow me …”

We did.

Here’s the rest of the story …


Living high off the pork …

December 8, 2017

According to the Census Bureau’s “American Community Survey” …

The five richest counties in the United States are all suburbs of Washington, D.C.

Loudoun County, VA tops the list … the median household income there is $125,672.

As a benchmark, the median household income in the U.S.  $55,322.


Following close behind Loudoun are:

  • Falls Church, VA ($115,244)
  • Fairfax County, VA ($114,329)
  • Howard County, MD ($113,800)
  • Arlington County, VA ($108,706)

New York, New Jersey and California have a total of 8 counties on the top 20 list.

Here’s the full list …


Global IQ: What are the 10 most populated countries?

September 6, 2017

Today, a lesson in world geography and data visualization…


Below is a great visual from Tableau … countries are displayed as as bubbles … with each bubble proportionate based on each country’s population.

The 10 most populated countries are numbered.

OK, name them … in order.

Should be easy for well-educated, news-following, world travelers … right?



Need a hint ?

The bubbles are color-coded based on region:



Ready to check your answer?


Global IQ: What are the 10 most populated countries?

April 5, 2017

Today, a lesson in world geography and data visualization…


Below is a great visual from Tableau … countries are displayed as as bubbles … with each bubble proportionate based on each country’s population.

The 10 most populated countries are numbered.

OK, name them … in order.

Should be easy for well-educated, news-following, world travelers … right?



Need a hint ?

The bubbles are color-coded based on region:



Ready to check your answer?


What percentage of babies are born on Medicaid?

April 3, 2017

Make your guess before peeking ….


Medicaid took center stage during the repeal & replace drama … so, I’ve been more alert to Medicaid news.

Let’s put today’s question in context.

According to MSN:

Over the past five decades, Medicaid has surpassed Medicare in the number of Americans it covers.

It has grown gradually into a behemoth that provides for the medical needs of one in five Americans — 74 million people.

For comparison … about half are on employer-based plans and “only” 14% are on Medicare.



Here’s the geographic spread, according to the Kaufman Family Foundation:


Note the heavy Medicaid density in the West … and the relatively light density in the Heartland.


OK, you have your frame of reference: about 20% of Americans on Medicaid.

So, what percentage of babies are born on Medicaid?


Democrats and the “wasted vote” phenomenon …

February 16, 2017

Two states and a handful of cities do not a country make.


Ran across an interesting article in the Boston Globe titled “The Democrats’ demographic dilemma.”

The punch line of the article:

Democrats have carried the popular vote in six of the last seven presidential elections, an unprecedented run.

But, Democrats are confronted by the “wasted vote phenomenon”.

They roll up huge margins in blue enclaves, but political polarization and demographic sorting control the electoral map.



Here are a few highlight snippets from the article …


If you don’t understand Trump’s broad appeal, take the “bubble quiz” ….

May 6, 2016

Charles Murray, a political scientist and author observed – long before Campaign 2016 started – that there exists a new upper class that’s completely disconnected from the average American and American culture at large.




In his 2012 book Coming Apart, Murray presented a 25 question self-diagnostic to determine how connected or disconnected you are from average Americans … that is, whether or not you live in a bubble.


More Millennials than Baby Boomers … bad news for capitalism.

April 28, 2016

Let’s connect a couple of dots today.

Noticed the headline: “Millennials overtake Baby Boomers as America’s largest generation.”

That’s right, Millennials (ages 18 to 34) have surpassed Baby Boomers (ages 51 to 69) as the nation’s largest living generation, according to population estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Baby Boomer generation peaked at 78.8 million in 1999.

The Millennial generation – which now numbers 83.1 million — continues to grow as young immigrants expand its ranks.



So, what’s that demographic shift have to do with capitalism?


“Authoritarians” for Trump … pssst, that may be you!

January 20, 2016

Interesting piece in Politico

Let’s start with a quick test.

Imagine yourself as a parent.



Would you prefer that your children be:

  1. respectful or independent
  2. obedient or self-reliant
  3. well-behaved or considerate
  4. well-mannered or curious

Pick one from each of the above pairs.

Let’s see how ‘authoritarian’ you are …


More educated women having babies, but …

May 8, 2015

Pew just published an interesting study on birth rates and family size.

Here’s one of Pew’s spotlight charts.

The data seems to support the headline …



But, there’s a more compelling takeaway …


Nums: More Millennials still living with parents … huh?

August 6, 2013

A recent Pew survey has captured a lot of headlines claiming that an increasing percentage and number of Millennials to move back with mom and dad due to the bad economy, rising college enrollments and declining marriage rates.


The headlines are technically true but, in my opinion, are very misleading.

Here’s why …


Ditch my ride … Americans driving less

July 29, 2013

According to CNBC

Driving in the U.S. reached a peak in 2004 and has been declining steadily ever since.



Apparently, high gas prices have registered in the American psyche and spurred some fundamental changes …


Nums: Marriage down, shacking-up up …

June 20, 2013

According to USA Today

The marriage rate is at its lowest point in more than a century, and the number of marriages across the USA fell more than 5% during the recession.



In 1980 there were about 10.5 marriages per 1,000 population.

That rate is down to about 6.5 per 1,000.

And, almost 1/3 of all people who married are remarrying … 2nd and 3rd timers.




What about shacking up?


Nums: Are there more singles or married people?

January 22, 2013

Answer: Married folks … but not by much and the curves are soon to cross,

At the end of 2012, singles accounted for a record 49.6% of the population aged 16 years or older.

That’s up from 37.6% at the end of 1976.


Here are some more nums and the ‘so whats’ …


Nums: What % of kids have both parents present?

January 3, 2013

I was chatting with a friend of mine who  is a middle school teacher is suburban Baltimore.

He was telling me about his schools online grading system that regularly emails parents with detailed tracking of their kids’ performance – grades on tests, whether or not homework was turned in, etc.

I asked: What percent of parents are on the system – getting the emails.

He said about 75%.

The other 25% either don’t have internet access (a few) … or either don’t care or are single-parents stretched thin (a lot).

That got me wondering about the number of kids who are structurally disadvantaged by having only one parent present to raise them

Well, it turns out that the Washington Times just did an analysis of Census data to answer the question.

Since the answer may be a bit controversial, I’ll just stick to the facts …


* * * * *
Drilling down, here are some details from the analysis …


Look for Mitt ads on the ‘Price is Right’ … and Dems on Springer.

September 18, 2012

The Washington Times did an analysis of Dem and GOP TV ad placements to reverse engineer their respective targets and strategies.

Here are some of the findings:

  • Republicans are at an extreme disadvantage when it comes to television advertising because Democrats watch more TV.
  • Every single genre of TV programming has a Democratic-leaning audience, with sports coming the closest to a partisan balance.
  • Sports and documentaries, have audiences that are far more inclined to vote.
  • Shark Tank,” a reality program about entrepreneurship, has only 18 percent Democratic ads, and the law-and-order favorite “Cops” is heavily Republican.
  • Venerable game shows, while barely registering as blips in modern pop culture, remain among the top destinations for political ads because of their largely older base of viewers who are likely to go to the polls.


  • The Price Is Right” is second among all TV shows for Romney ads and third for spots for Obama.
  • Democrats are advertising during daytime shows watched by high numbers of unemployed people, including those who rely on welfare and other social services.
  • More generally, the unemployed watch whatever’s on at 3 a.m., or Jerry Springer’ or Maury Povich.
  • All “Jerry Springer” ads have been for Democrats. PAC Priorities USA has made 10 separate buys on Springer.
  • Nearly every political ad during the adult cartoon series “Family Guy” is for a Democrat.
  • More than 80 percent of political spots during “The Young and the Restless,” the long-running soap opera, tout liberal candidates and causes.
  • Relatively inexpensive ads during daytime soap operas watched by stay-at-home moms are abundant, and are used primarily by Democrats.
  • Reality-dating programs have a skewed Democratic audience that’s below average in likelihood to vote.
  • Obama has advertised heavily on courtroom reality shows such as “Judge Judy”  whose viewers include large numbers of black voters.

The implicit Democratic strategy according to the Washington Times:

The more lowbrow the show, the better.

“People who are low in political information can be more persuadable,”

“If you get someone that’s watching ‘[Keeping Up With] the Kardashians,’ and they’re a swing voter, and see one or two ads,” that could make the difference because that ad may be the only political information they digest.

Sometimes I wonder if “1-man, 1-vote” is overrated …

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Spreading the wealth … from the suburbs to the center city.

August 24, 2012

Stanley Kurtz is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and author of the new book, “Spreading the Wealth: How Obama Is Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities”.

His central premise was summarized in Forbes:

In the eyes of the leftist community organizers, suburbs are instruments of bigotry and greed — a way of selfishly refusing to share tax money with the urban poor. 

To reverse the trend, some groups advocate systematically redistributing the wealth of America’s suburbs to the cities via  “regional tax-base sharing,” a practice by which suburban tax money is directly redistributed to nearby cities and less-well-off “inner-ring” suburbs.


President Obama has lent the full weight of his White House to the  efforts.

A federal program called the Sustainable Communities Initiative, for example, has salted planning commissions across the country with “regional equity” and “smart growth” as goals. 

These are, of course, code words. 

“Regional equity” means that, by their mere existence, suburbs cheat the people who live in cities. 

It means, “Let’s spread the suburbs’ wealth around” – i.e., take from the suburbanites to give to the urban poor.

“Smart growth” means, “Quit building sub-divisions and malls, and move back to where mass transit can shuttle you between your 800 square foot apartment in an urban tower and your downtown job.”

Suburbs are for sellouts:  That is a large and overlooked theme of Obama’s famous memoir, Dreams from My Father.  The city is the moral choice.

He attributed urban decline to taxpayer “flight” to the suburbs. 

So, compulsory redistribution of suburban tax money to cities was the only lasting solution to urban decay. 

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Hey, Millennials: Lower your expectations … say, what?

July 30, 2012

Couple of articles caught my eye in the past couple of days that together have me scratching my head …

First, an HBR blast which argued that the best way to reduce stress is to lower your expectations.

Don’t expect much out of life, your friends & family or your co-workers.

If you don’t expect much, you won’t be disappointed and your stress level will be kept in check

Say, what?

Then came a Newsweek article about the economic  jam Millennials are in … with student loans, a bad job market, etc.

Started with an interesting point:

Median net worth of people under 35 fell 37 percent between 2005 and 2010; those over 65 took only a 13 percent hit.

The wealth gap today between younger and older Americans now stands as the widest on record.

The median net worth of households headed by someone 65 or older is $170,494, 42 percent higher than in 1984

The median net worth for younger-age households is a paltry $3,662, down 68 percent from a quarter century ago.

OK, reason for the Millennials to despair, for sure.

And, the proposed  prescriptions?

There’s a  growing notion among economists that the new generation must lower expectations.

For example, the  millennial generation shouldn’t set its sights on homeownership … “because it’s going to be out of reach for so many of them.”

They are understandably more amenable to  government-mandated income redistribution … since so few young people pay much in the way of taxes.

All I can say is: YIPES.

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Julia, meet Henry … a High Earner (who’s) Not Rich Yet … sound familiar?

July 23, 2012

A couple of months ago, the Obama campaign unveiled its “Life of Julia,” a website detailing “how President Obama’s policies help one woman over her lifetime” … by showering her with the benefits of the entitlement state, from Head Start to student loans to Obamacare.

In response, the Weekly Standard has resurrected H.E.N.R.Y. —  marketing slang, first used in Fortune in 2003, for High Earners who are Not Rich Yet.

Henrys run households with annual incomes between $100,000 and $250,000.

There are about 21 million of them.

Henrys make up the overwhelming majority of affluent consumers, who account for 40 percent of consumer spending — which in turn is 70 percent of economic activity.

Without the Henrys’ getting and spending, the U.S. economy would be much poorer.

One can find Henry and his family in the affluent suburbs and exurbs surrounding cities like Washington, D.C., New York, and Los Angeles, or in the counties of suburban Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Raleigh, and Philadelphia.

He owns his house. He plans to send his children to college. He shops at Target, Saks, Coach, Restoration Hardware, Banana Republic, and, on special occasions, Tiffany.

The Obama years have not been kind to Henry.

His economic fortunes have bobbed up and down.

He’s never been flush, but he’s never been broke, either.

So much to him seems dependent on forces outside his control — whether the Fed engages in another round of quantitative easing, whether the eurozone survives for another week.

Henry is the true swing voter in this Presidential election.

Read more about Henry

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The election: economics or demographics?

June 12, 2012

Article in the NY Times concluded that Obama has a tailwind because shifting demographics work to his advantage  …

This fall’s election will be a  contest pitting “demographics versus economics.”

White working-class voters have gotten seriously squeezed by high unemployment and stagnant or declining incomes.

But, the number of working-class whites is shrinking and minority voters have edged up as a share of the population … the combined effects of immigration and disparate birthrates.

Comprising 89 percent of the electorate in 1976, whites had fallen to 74 percent four years ago. During the same period, Hispanics grew from 1 percent of the electorate to 9 percent.

In 12 battleground states, the proportion of votes cast by working-class whites, a group Mr. Obama lost lopsidedly in 2008, will drop by three percentage points this fall.

A number of states are urbanizing and losing their historically large rural conservative vote.

Somehow, it doesn’t seem like a good trend when “working class” people — regardless of their race — simultaneously get squeezed economically and lose their voting clout …

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Got a Bachelor’s Degree? … Odds are you’re a woman.

June 12, 2012

Interesting analysis from The Atlantic: Why Women Will Rule the Economy of the Future

Way back in 1975, more than 1 in 4 guys had a degree; less then 1 in 5 gals did.

Curves crossed in 1995 when the percentage of young women with degrees hit 1 in 4 and the guys’ rate slipped back a bit.

Since then, women have been opening a lead … approaching the 40% mark.



>> Latest Posts

Watch out for the boomerang effect …

March 23, 2012

“Boomerang kids” are young adults who move out of the family home for school or work and then return home.

According to the Cristian Science Monitor, a Pew Report indicates that the recession has exacerbated a trend that was already under way since the 1980s.

  • In 1980, some 11 percent of young adults lived in multigenerational households.
  • Today, some 29 percent of 25- to 34-year olds either never moved out of their parents’ home or say they returned home in recent years.
  • Among 18- to 24-year olds, that figure is even higher – 53 percent of young adults in that age group live at home.

Of those living at home, some 78 percent say they’re upbeat about their living arrangements … 24 percent say it’s been good for their relationships with their parents.

>> Latest Posts

Another tipping point: married folks a dwindling majority …

March 8, 2012

Excerpted from the Wash Post:

The proportion of adults who are married has plunged to record lows as more people decide to live together now and wed later, reflecting decades of evolving attitudes about the role of marriage in society.

Just 51 percent of all adults who are 18 and older are married, placing them on the brink of becoming a minority, according to a Pew Research Center analysis.

That represents a steep drop from 57 percent who were married in 2000.

The marriage patterns are a striking departure from the middle of the 20th century, when the percentage of adults who never wed was in the low single digits.

In 1960, for example, when most baby boomers were children, 72 percent of all adults were married.

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The rich get richer … and, oh yeah, so do the poor.

August 6, 2011

Punch line: President Obama has has oft-repeated that  “For many years, middle class Americans have been working harder, yet not enjoying their fair share of the fruits of a growing economy.”

Au contraire, mon ami.

But a new working paper titled “A “Second Opinion” on the Economic Health of the American Middle Class”  NBER and Cornell researchers provides new evidence that the growth in after-tax household income has been substantial for all economic strata.

Specifically, by taking into account previously unmeasured shifts in household size and the tax units in them, taxes paid, transfer payments received, and the increasing importance of fringe benefits, the researchers found that:

  • The growth in after-tax household income for the lower income strata was about 25% between 1979 and 2009.
  • The growth in after-tax household income for middle income strata was about 35% between 1979 and 2009.
  • The growth in after-tax household income for the highest income strata was about 50% between 1979 and 2009.

Bottom line: a slowly rising tide has lifted all boats … albeit at different rates.

Source: Prof Mark Perry

>> Latest Posts

The shrinking (black) middle class

July 13, 2011

Some sobering statistics  reported in the Chicago Sun Times …

“History is going to say the black middle class was decimated” over the past few years.

For many in the black community, job loss during this recession has knocked them out of the middle class and back into poverty.

  • In 2004, the median net worth of white households was $134,280, compared with $13,450 for black households.
  • By 2009, the median net worth for white households had fallen 24 percent to $97,860; the median net worth for black households had fallen 83 percent to $2,170.
  • Blacks are overrepresented in state and local government jobs that are being eliminated because of massive budget shortfalls.
  • Since 2009, the overall unemployment rate has fallen slightly, while the black unemployment rate has risen from 14.7 to 16.2 percent — The highest rate since the government began keeping track in 1972.
  • Only 56.9 percent of black men over 20 were working, compared with 68.1 percent of white men.
  • The college-educated unemployment rate is 3.9 percent for whites and 7 percent for blacks.
  • Nearly 8 percent of African Americans who bought homes from 2005 to 2008 have lost them to foreclosure, compared with 4.5 percent of whites.

Some see a bitter irony in soaring black unemployment and the decline of the black middle class on the watch of the first black president.

* * * * *

Ken’s Take: No question, the recession has hit the lower rungs of the economy most severely.  The numbers are striking.

Note: According to Gallup, Over 80% of blacks still approve of job President Obama is doing …


>> Latest Posts

What the 2010 Census May Mean for Marketers

September 14, 2010

TakeAway:  The 2010 Census results will likely reveal the Hispanic market’s growing influence and help marketers understand they need to start focusing on this huge demographic change.  Few people realize that Hispanics are influencing the general market more than vice-versa.

* * * * *

Excerpted from AdvertisingAge, “A Look at the Numbers Behind America’s Huge Demographic Shift” By Chiqui Cartagena, August 31, 2010

With the arrival of Hispanic Heritage month, people in the media and marketing worlds have already started to talk about what the new Census results could reveal next year.  This is the key point: It’s not about the Hispanic market, it about how these demographic shifts are affecting the so-called general consumer market.

 It wasn’t really until the 2000 Census that the dominance of Hispanics became a “new phenomenon.”  By the end of 2010, there will be 30% more Hispanics (50 million) than there will be African Americans (38 million) in this country. 

 Hispanics will continue to be a driving force behind America’s changing face, not so much through immigration but rather by births, with 60% of the U.S. Hispanic market growth coming from the natural births.

So, what does this mean to you?

  • Any marketing plan targeting youths must take into account Hispanics.
  • Marketing plans must take into account that Hispanics live in multi-generational households, therefore it is critical to understand how different generations influence each other.
  • The influence of the Hispanic market goes beyond the traditional states. Over 30 markets saw the Hispanic population increase by more than 100,000 persons in the past 10 years.
  • U.S. born Hispanics will require marketing campaigns that take into account their unique cultural background. It is critical to develop marketing campaigns that go beyond language and place of birth.

Edit by AMW

* * * * *

Full Article:

* * * * *

Did you know …

January 11, 2010

From the Statistical Abstract of the United States:

  • In 2007, the average American spent 1,613 hours watching TV, the equivalent of 67 days.
  • About three-quarters of Americans (76.1 percent in 2007, to be exact) get to work by driving alone. Only 10.4 percent carpool, while 4.9 percent use public transportation and 2.8 percent walk.
  • On average, Americans spend 25.3 minutes commuting each way. The state with the longest average commuting time is New York, at 31.5 minutes.
  • In 2006, about 34 percent of U.S. adults were judged obese, triple France’s rate (10.5 percent) and four times Switzerland’s (7.7 percent).
  • From 1993 to 2007, murders dropped from 25,000 to 17,000 and robberies from 660,000 to 445,000.
  • In 2007, 18 percent of high school students reported carrying a weapon sometime in the previous year.
  • Smoking continues to decline, from 25.3 percent of adults in 1990 to 19.7 percent in 2007.
  • Garbage per person has stabilized; it was 4.5 pounds per day in 1990 and 4.6 pounds in 2007.
  • In 2007, nearly two-fifths of all U.S. births were to unmarried women, double the share in 1980.
  • The share of children under the federal poverty line in 2007 (17.6 percent) was virtually the same as in 1980 (17.9 percent).
  • Since 1970, the student-teacher ratio in schools has declined dramatically, from 22-1 to 15-1 in 2007 … with little effect on test results.
  • Almost one-quarter of elementary and high school students are immigrants or have immigrant parents.

Excerpted from RCP: American Life by the Numbers, January 11, 2010

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