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Significant Digits for Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014

Welcome to the second edition of Significant Digits, a daily digest of the telling numbers tucked inside the news. We’re experimenting with it, so let us know what you think.

0.09 bitcoin

Time magazine announced that it would begin to accept payment for subscriptions in the digital currency bitcoin. A one year, $30 print subscription would cost about 0.09 BTC based on yesterday’s prices. It’s always touching when two volatile and uncertain business models find each other. [The New York Times]


15 percent of the vote

That’s the percentage of Republican voters who would back former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in a presidential primary if former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney doesn’t run. Bush leads a Romney-less field, and yesterday announced his intention to form an exploratory committee to look into running for the presidency. [The Washington Post]


26 percent good news

The nation’s perception of its job situation appears to be improving: 26 percent of Americans reported hearing good news about jobs compared to 25 percent who heard bad news. That’s the first time good news beat bad news in five years. [Pew Research Center]


90 days of free mail

Just one of many perks enjoyed by former members of the U.S. Congress. In addition to being entitled to taxpayer-funded mail (through something called the “franking privilege,”), former House members can continue to use the parking lot, the member’s dining room and the gym, albeit the latter has a fee. [The Washington Post]


294 mistakenly accepted freshman

Johns Hopkins University mistakenly told 294 applicants they were accepted to the prestigious university when they had actually been denied. The cringeworthy error places Hopkins in good company: Fordham University, Vassar College and The University of California at San Diego have all erroneously admitted students in the last few years. [The Washington Post]


$550 less on gasoline

The average U.S. household is expected to spend $1,962 on gasoline next year, about $550 less than this year. That forecast is the lowest level in 11 years. [U.S. Energy Information Administration]


1,000 tons of frozen french fries

McDonalds is running out of french fries in Japan due to labor disputes at U.S. ports, leading to rationing and size limits beginning Wednesday. McDonalds has taken emergency measures and airlifted 1,000 tons of fries in, with a subsequent plan to ship over another 1,600 tons in January. Please keep the people of Japan in your thoughts and prayers in this difficult time. [The Washington Post]


7,000 body cameras

Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti announced a plan to purchase 7,000 body cameras for the LAPD, enough for most of the department’s 9,900 officers. [Los Angeles Times]


$10,000 starting bid

That’s the starting bid for one of the Army’s 4,000 surplus Humvees, which are on sale to the general public starting Wednesday. It’s an exceptional choice if you were disgusted by the earlier item about Americans saving $550 on gasoline next year. [Jalopnik]


925 million gallons

Forecasted consumption of orange juice this fiscal year, the lowest since at least 1996 and the eighth decline in 10 years. [Bloomberg News]

See a significant digit out in the wild? Tweet it to me @WaltHickey.

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.

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