Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

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Lance Kennedy
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Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Jul 06, 2018 4:57 am

Reference, New Scientist, 30 June, 2018, page 22.

Suicide rates are rising in the USA, whereas in most other nations, it is falling. Currently in the USA, it is 15 suicide deaths per 100,000 people per year. This is the highest rate in wealthy nations, though some poor nations have more suicide, like Russia and India. My country is still too high at 12, but it is falling. The world average is 10. In the UK, it is 9.

Why ?
Two explanations offered.
1. The American dream is that a person who works hard can lift him/herself out of poverty. Sadly, that is mostly myth and many people remain trapped. The expectation though, may put pressure on some.
2. The American culture of rugged individualism. In other nations, there is more social support.

Suicide also has a copy cat aspect. When celebrities are reported to have killed themselves, the suicide rate across the country rises. The biggest group to kill themselves is working class and middle aged white men. The most common method used is by bullet.

What should the USA do to reverse this horrible trend ?

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby TJrandom » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:39 am

I believe that Japan`s rate is slightly higher, not to be bragged on. Some prior reading I had done suggested an uptick in the US was caused by the loss of homes following the Lehman financial collapse, the increase in opiate use, and a history of untreated mental illness. The solution seems obvious to me - address the drivers.

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby OlegTheBatty » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:31 pm

TJrandom wrote: The solution seems obvious to me - address the drivers.


You mean them liberuls, dontcha.
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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:43 pm

When the top 10% of an economy capture 80% of the wealth, the "Country" may be wealthy...but the people are not. Wealth itself, or lack thereof, does not drive suicide...until wealth is advertised as the measure of personal worth......

....but yeah: an effective social safety net would address a number of issues. As all work becomes automated....worshiping wealth will change.
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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby Gord » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:50 pm

OlegTheBatty wrote:
TJrandom wrote: The solution seems obvious to me - address the drivers.

You mean them liberuls, dontcha.

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Lance Kennedy
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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby Lance Kennedy » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:31 pm

TJrandom wrote:I believe that Japan`s rate is slightly higher, not to be bragged on. Some prior reading I had done suggested an uptick in the US was caused by the loss of homes following the Lehman financial collapse, the increase in opiate use, and a history of untreated mental illness. The solution seems obvious to me - address the drivers.


The article I referenced gave Japan as marginally lower than the USA. Suicide in Japan is viewed somewhat differently. In the European descended nations, it is seen as a cop out. Almost cowardly, whereas in Japan it is viewed more positively. Almost noble in some circumstances.

My reference does say that some people think the opiate problem is a factor, but the writer did not present it as a strong influence. Loss of homes and mental illness are factors everywhere, and most nations have a falling suicide rate.

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby TJrandom » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:54 pm

Yes Lance - but we were not talking `everywhere`, but rather in the US. I haven`t done recent research on the US drivers so there may well be some more important ones that need to be addressed. Agreed on suicide in Japan being viewed somewhat differently.

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sat Jul 07, 2018 1:56 am

TJ

Re "everywhere".
This is for comparison. In most countries, suicide rates are falling, but rising in the USA. Why ?

When I said loss of homes and mental illness is a problem everywhere, I meant that they do not prevent suicide rates falling most places.

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby TJrandom » Sat Jul 07, 2018 9:37 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:TJ

Re "everywhere".
This is for comparison. In most countries, suicide rates are falling, but rising in the USA. Why ?

When I said loss of homes and mental illness is a problem everywhere, I meant that they do not prevent suicide rates falling most places.


I do not have the data - but suspect that loss of homes is/was greater in the US following Lehman than it was in other countries. So dismissively saying that people lose homes in other countries seems off base. Same for untreated mental illness. If we throw out every possible cause in the US, simply because a similar event can happen in another country, we won`t be left with much to look at. So I am back with loss of homes, untreated mental illness, and opiates - all which I believe increased in the US at the same time that the suicide rate increased in the US.

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Re: Suicide. The American dream collapsed.

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sat Jul 07, 2018 8:40 pm

I can only report what the article said. They dismissed those causes. I hope they had good reasons.

But you should not assume that only the USA has serious social problems. I have been down this road before, on the gun threads. Gun lovers claim the USA has a very, very high murder rate because of unique social problems like gangs and drugs. But that is just a means of avoiding the issue of guns as a cause of high murder rates. Numerous nations have serious social problems including gangs and drugs. Including my own.


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