- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 3, 2016

With the 50th Super Bowl almost upon us, one federal agency has a reminder about how much America has changed since that very first game, staged in Los Angeles on Jan. 15, 1967. Behold, some startling numbers about the nation, all from official federal sources:

The U.S. population then was 197.5 million; it’s now 322.8 million. Five decades ago, the U.S. was home to 9.6 million foreign-born people; the number now stands at 42.4 million. The active-duty military population has dropped from 3.4 million then to 1.3 million now. The world population, incidentally, has more than doubled, from 3.5 billion to 7.3 billion.

The median sale price of a house in 1967 was $22,000; it’s now $282,800. A gallon of milk cost 33 cents; it’s now $3.31. A first-class postage stamp was 5 cents, up to 49 cents these days. The median age for a first marriage for women in 1967 was 20.6 years; it’s now 27 years. For men, it was 23 years, now up to 29.2 years.

Life expectancy was 70.5 years in 1967; it has risen to 78.8 years. The median age of the population was 28.1; it now stands at 37.7 years. Meanwhile, the number of people over 65 once was 19.1 million. It is now 46.2 million. Michael and Lisa were the most popular baby names in 1967, now replaced by Noah and Emma.

TOUGH TALK ON EXTREMISTS

When addressing Islamic extremists, should a U.S. president emphasize diplomacy or might, neutral words or a strong stance? A new Pew Research Center poll reveals a sharp partisan divide in the matter. Half of Americans say the next president should be careful not to criticize Islam as a whole when speaking about Islamic extremists; 29 percent of Republicans and 70 percent of Democrats agree.


SEE ALSO: Half of Americans say ‘some Muslims’ are anti-American: poll


Meanwhile, 40 percent overall want the next president to speak bluntly about Islamic extremists even if the statements are critical of Islam as a whole; 65 percent of Republicans and 22 percent of Democrats agree. See more numbers from this revealing survey in the Poll du Jour at column’s end.

LIBERTARIANS PARSE RAND PAUL’S EXIT

When Sen. Rand Paul dropped out of the presidential race on Wednesday, the Libertarian Party surveyed the landscape and declared, “The Libertarian Party nominee will be, indisputably, the only choice for small government in the 2016 race.” That nominee is most likely Gary Johnson, who ran for president in 2012 and snagged 1.2 million votes. The party will officially reveal their choice at a convention in May.

“Sen. Paul and I have some differences on issues, but he was the one candidate on the Republican side who was not afraid to talk about civil liberties, the perils of endless war, and the principles of liberty. His departure leaves a great many voters, especially among America’s youth, without a home in the two major parties. To them, I say, come be Libertarian with me,” Mr. Johnson says.

Libertarian National Committee Chair Nicholas Sarwark applauds Mr. Paul for his “principled stance” on the Fourth Amendment and criminal justice reforms. Some freedom-minded independent voters may consider the Libertarian Party, which is casting a wide outreach for potential support that extends to Muslim-American and Latino voters.

“We welcome all Americans who fear for the nation’s high debt, reckless spending, and heavy-handed and dangerous big government policies, domestic and abroad,” Mr. Sarwark observes.

THE HOUSE PEEKS AT SMALLER GOVERNMENT

Smaller, saner government in gaining momentum on Capitol Hill via some legislation of note.

“The old approach won’t work anymore. To enable the opportunity Americans are waiting for, we need policies that understand effective government is more important than big government, that growing small businesses is better than overregulation, and that fair treatment is better than favoritism,” says House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

He cites three bills in the House this week: The Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act, which trims red tape from housing policy and improves effectiveness of housing programs. The Encouraging Employee Ownership Act, meant to target outdated regulations that block businesses from getting the capital they need to grow. And the third: The Financial Institution Customer Protection Act curbs the federal government’s tendency to favor businesses it prefers, like Solyndra, while targeting those it doesn’t, like Hobby Lobby.

“Opportunity is not out of reach. It is at our fingertips if we make the right choices now to create effective government, smaller government, and fair government,” Mr. McCarthy says.

ONE FOR MR. KURTZ

Some applause for Howard Kurtz, a veteran media analyst who has spent several decades sharing insight about journalistic traumas and dramas with The Washington Post, The Daily Beast and CNN — writing five books, penning endless columns and hosting his own broadcasts. Mr. Kurtz joined Fox News in 2013, and now anchors “MediaBuzz” for the network. The Sunday morning show is now garnering its biggest audiences yet, typically drawing 1.2 million viewers, up 18 percent in the last year.

“Throughout the election-saturated news month, Kurtz has provided analysis of breaking news and media headlines alongside journalists and commentators,” Fox News noted, “Additionally, in January, he sat down for interviews with Republican presidential candidates Gov. Chris Christie, Sen. Ted Cruz and Donald Trump.”

POLL DU JOUR

76 percent of Americans say discrimination against U.S. Muslims is on the rise; 70 percent of Republicans and 84 percent of Democrats agree.

59 percent of Americans overall say Muslims in the U.S. today face a lot of discrimination; 42 percent of Republicans and 74 percent of Democrats agree.

52 percent overall personally know a Muslim; 50 percent of Republicans and 57 percent of Democrats agree.

49 percent overall say at least “some” Muslims in the U.S. are anti-American; 63 percent of Republicans and 41 percent of Democrats agree.

42 percent of overall say “few or none” are anti-American; 29 percent of Republicans and 54 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Pew Research Center poll of 2,009 U.S. adults conducted Jan. 7-14 and released Wednesday.

Cheers and jeers to [email protected]

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide