In fact

May 19, 2006
  • Three quarters of young French people say they would like to become civil servants. [The Economist, 1st April 2006]

  • Charles Dickens created 989 named characters. [The Guardian, 25th March 2006]

  • There are more British troops in Northern Ireland (9,200) than in Iraq (8,000). [Prospect research]

  • 74 per cent of the women passengers aboard the Titanic survived, compared with 20 per cent of the men. [Weekly Standard, 10th April 2006]

  • The average IQ in Germany is 107, the highest in Europe. Serbs have the lowest IQ, with an average of 89. Britain is in the middle with 100. [The Times, 27th March 2006]

  • The word "bible" does not appear in the works of Shakespeare. [The Guardian, 3rd March 2006]

  • Daniel Dennett introduced the frisbee to Britain. [The Observer, 12th March 2006]

  • New York City's police force is nearly four times bigger than America's entire border patrol. [The Economist, 1st April 2006]

  • In 2005, the number of English families with second homes passed 500,000 for the first time—a rise of 10 per cent in a year. Of the almost 330,000 second homes owned in Britain, nearly 80,000 are located in Devon or Cornwall. [The Guardian, 21st February 2006]

  • In the US in 2003, the total number of cancer deaths dropped for the first time since records began in 1930. The biggest cause was a decline in the number of people who smoke. [New Scientist, 18th February 2006]

  • Starbucks bought 37 per cent of Costa Rica's entire coffee crop in the 2004-05 season. [The Economist, 1st April 2006]

  • David Irving's brother is chairman of the Wiltshire racial equality council. [The Guardian, 27th February 2006]