Harper’s Index — From the October 2013 issue

Harper’s Index

Rank of “Jesus” and “Mohammed,” respectively, among the Wikipedia articles with the most editorial changes : 8,3

Rank of “George W. Bush” : 1

Projected height, in feet, of a Saudi skyscraper, financed by the bin Laden family, that will be the tallest in the world : 3,281

Cost of a U.S. command center completed last November in Afghanistan’s Helmand province : $34,000,000

Number of days it has been used : 0

Percentage of students enrolled in Afghan schools in 2001 who were girls : 0

Percentage of those enrolled today who are : 40

Chance a U.S. public school had full-time security in 1997 : 1 in 17

Today : 1 in 3

Percentage increase in the number of private security guards employed in Europe since 2004 : 73

Percentage by which private guards outnumber police there : 25

Percentage change in the number of immigrants entering the United States illegally between 2006 and 2011 : –73

Price of a simulated illegal border crossing at an amusement park in Hidalgo, Mexico : $20

Average length of time, in years, a prisoner placed in solitary confinement in California spends there : 7

Factor by which a California prisoner in solitary is more likely than one in the general population to commit suicide : 33

Percentage change in New York’s state-prison population since 1999 : –25

In the state’s violent-crime rate over that time : –31

Amount Verizon charges the government to tap a phone line for one month : $775

Amount Facebook charges the government for access to user profiles : $0

Percentage of Americans who believe journalists contribute “not very much” or “nothing at all” to society : 27

Percentage who say that using social media has never made them feel better about themselves : 60

Chance that an American with a smartphone has used it during sex : 1 in 10

Portion of Americans making $75,000 or more annually who report feeling lonely : 1/5

Of those making $15,000 or less who do : 2/5

Amount New York City fined two sanitation workers for accepting a ten-dollar tip last year : $2,000

Percentage change since 1979 in the portion of low-wage workers holding a four-year college degree : +100

Portion of American workers who say they are either “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” at work : 7/10

Percentage of the current unemployment rate attributable to uncertainty about federal economic policy : 17

Number of states in which it is legal to fire someone over sexual orientation : 29

Portion of the U.S. population who believe it is against federal law to do so : 9/10

Date on which the Lebanese Psychiatric Society declared that homosexuality is not an illness : 7/11/2013

Year in which the Iowa Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage : 2009

Portion of Iowans who say the decision has had either no impact or a positive impact on their lives : 3/4

Portion of Americans who provide some care for family members or friends with significant health problems : 2/5

Date on which Mississippi became the last state to legalize the brewing of beer at home : 7/1/2013

Percentage change since 2011 in the number of people who die of heroin overdoses in Maine each year : +300

The last year the World Series–winning team didn’t have at least one player implicated in performance-enhancing-drug use : 2005

Kernels of corn it takes to make one kernel of Jelly Belly candy corn : 156

Estimated percentage of all Lucky Charms cereal eaten by adults : 45

Projected year by which the sale of adult diapers will outpace the sale of baby diapers in Japan : 2020


October Index Sources

1,2 Taha Yasseri, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford (England)
3 Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill Architecture Company (Chicago)
4,5 Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (Arlington, Va.)
6,7 Afghan Ministry of Education (Kabul)
8,9 U.S. Department of Defense
10,11 Confederation of European Security Forces (Wemmel, Belgium)
12 U.S. Government Accountability Office
13 Parque EcoAlberto (Hidalgo, Mexico)
14 Amnesty International (N.Y.C.)
15 Raymond Paterson (Washington)
16 New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (Albany)
17 New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (Albany)
18 Verizon Wireless (N.Y.C.)
19 Facebook, Inc. (Menlo Park, Calif.)
20 Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project (Washington)
21 Abt SRBI (N.Y.C.)
22 Jumio (Palo Alto, Calif.)
23,24 Harris Interactive (Rochester, N.Y.)
25 New York City Conflicts of Interest Board; 26 Center for Economic Policy and Research (Washington)
27 Gallup, Inc. (Washington)
28 Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; 29 Center for American Progress (Washington)
30 Greenberg Quinlan Rosner (Washington)
31 Lebanese Psychiatric Society (Beirut)
32 Iowa Judicial Branch (Des Moines)
33 Public Policy Polling (Raleigh, N.C.)
34 Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project (Washington)
35 Mississippi Department of Revenue (Clinton)
36 Maine Department of Health and Human Services (Augusta)
37,38 Harper’s research
39 General Mills, Inc. (Minneapolis)
40 Japan Hygiene Products Industry Association (Tokyo)

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