Turtle Index, January 2006

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In the tradition of the Harper’s Index, here’s the first ever Turtle Index, a compendium of numerical one-liners mostly based on polls. What percentage of American cell phone users have stopped having sex to answer the phone? How does that compare to Italians? It’s all in here as well as a few odd facts about Iraqi, American and German optimism.

2.5 Average number of hours per day American high-schoolers spend watching TV or playing video games [1].
1.3 Average number of hours per day a Scandanavian high school ski racer spends training, roughly [1]
45 Percentage of Republicans who think Osama bin Laden will be killed or captured in 2006 [2]
15 Percentage of Democrats who think Osama bin Laden will be killed or captured in 2006 [2]
49 Number of times Billy Graham has figured among the top ten most admired men in America [3]
5.15 Federal minimum wage in dollars per hour.
6.00 Median estimate by Americans when asked to guess the minimum wage in dollars per hour [4]
83 Percentage of Americans who favor raising the minimum wage [4]
29 Percentage of Americans responding “Republican” to the question “Which party can better reduce the budget deficit?” [5]
47 Percentage responding “Democrat” to the same question [5]
42 Percentage of Americans from households earning over $75,000 per year who say America is divided into Haves and Have-nots [6]
55 Percentage of Americans from households earning under $22,000 per year who say America is divided into Haves and Have-nots [6]
29 Percentage of Republicans who say America is divided into Haves and Have-nots [6]
62 Percentage of Democrats who say America is divided into Haves and Have-nots [6]
60 Percentage of Republicans who place themselves among the Haves [6]
36 Percentage of Democrats who place themselves among the Haves [6]
65 Percentage of Americans in 1997 who believed a UFO crash landed in Roswell, New Mexico in 1947 [7]
7 Percentage of Americans in 1997 who believed that they or someone they knew had been abducted by extraterrestrials [7]
16.1 Percentage of African-American men who say that AIDS was created and spread by the CIA [8]
21.3 Percentage of African-American men who say that AIDS was created by the government to control the black population [8]
15 Percentage of Americans cell phone users who say they have stopped having sex to answer the phone [9]
22 Percentage of Spanish and German cell phone users who say they have stopped having sex to answer the phone [9]
7 Percentage of Italian cell phone users who say they have stopped having sex to answer the phone [9]
49 Percentage of Americans saying that “most” members of Congress are corrupt [10]
50 Percentage of Americans who would like to crash Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s wedding [11]
70 Percentage of Iraqis who say they are happy with their personal lives [11]
64 Percentage of Americans who are happy with their personal lives (put themselves near to the top of a ladder with the top being the best possible life) [12]
49 Percentage of Germans who rate themselves similarly [12]
61 Percentage of Americans who are optimistic about the next five years for themselves personally [12]
35 Percentage of Germans who are optimistic about the next five years for themselves personally [12]
65 Percentage of Americans who disagree with the statement “Success in life is pretty much determined by forces outside our control” [12]
31 Percentage of Germans and Italians (same) who disagree with the statement “Success in life is pretty much determined by forces outside our control” [12]

Sources

  1. “Building Olympians: Are We Ready for Torino?”, Nordic News 2006, p. 12
  2. Almost Half of Americans Expect Terrorist Attack in 2006“, The Gallup Poll, Jan 9, 2006.
  3. Bush,Hillary Most Admired Again“, The Gallup Poll, Dec 28, 2005.
  4. Gallup Poll, Nov. 7-10, 2005, as reported at http://www.pollingreport.com/workplay.htm
  5. Katrina Relief Raises Concern over Excessive Spending, Waste“, Pew Research Center, Oct. 19, 2005.
  6. ibid, Data Tables
  7. 1997 Time/CNN Poll reported in The Government Executive, June 17, 1997, ‘The Daily Fed”.
  8. Conspiracy Beliefs May Be Hindering HIV Prevention Among African Americans“, Charles Devarics, Population Reference Bureau, based on Laura M. Bogart and Sheryl Thorburn, “Are HIV/AIDS Conspiracy Beliefs a Barrier to HIV Prevention Among African Americans?” Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes 38, no. 2 (2005).
  9. “Cell Phones Put Sex on Hold”, Fitness Rx for Women, Oct. 2005, p. 43, based on reporting from the New York Post, April 12, 2005.
  10. Poll: Half believe Congress is dirty“, CNN, Jan 3, 2006
  11. Newsweek, Jan 2, 2006.
  12. Americans and Candians: the Not-so-odd Couple“,Pew Research Center, Jan 14, 2004.

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