Middle-Aged White Americans Dying at Alarming Rate

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by vrDrew, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #1
    And it seems they are largely killing themselves.

    Two Princeton Economists announced their findings on Monday, showing that the mortality rates for white Americans had soared over the last decade and a half - at a time when mortality rates for just about every other racial and socio-economic group had declined. Alarming in and of itself.

    But what is most disturbing is the cause for this increase in mortality:

    I would be lying if I didn't see a connection between this and the rise of Fox News and the rabid right Republicanism exemplified by the Tea Party.

    I would also be lying if I didn't see evidence of this sort of tragedy unfolding among some of my own acquaintances. I've already seen one friend drink himself to death in his early forties. Two others have lifestyles that can only be described as borderline-suicidal through alcoholic self-medication. The only bright spot in their particular cases is that neither of them happen to own firearms.
     
  2. Gutwrench macrumors 65816

    Gutwrench

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    #2
    The reason married men die at a younger age than their wives is because...we want to.
     
  3. unlinked macrumors 6502a

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    Doesn't sound too surprising. White males have pretty much the highest suicide rate in the US. Only Native American males are really comparable.
     
  4. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #4

    Where is this connection you see?
     
  5. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    Fox News: the Zik Zak of the 21st century.

    I'm surprised they're not running blipverts yet.
     
  6. b0fh666 macrumors 6502a

    b0fh666

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  7. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Well, apart from the idea that every red-blooded American man needs to have access to a gun 24/7 - I think a lot can be laid at the door of the delusions fostered by Conservative media.

    Why are white men killing themselves (through guns, alcohol, or prescription drug misuse)? A lot can be explained by diminished job opportunities. Not just the financial cost; but also through the sense of hopelessness that follows with it.

    But in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, what were these middle-aged white men so angry about? Government debt - for pete's sake.

    Now, if you were the trustee of a vast family fortune, concerned about the soundness of the dollars bequeathed to one's descendants in forty or fifty years, that might - possibly - be a valid concern.

    But if you are trying to make the mortgage and car payment - what you need is a job. Right now.

    What would be of most use to the fortunes - medical, psychological, and financial - of middle-aged white men would be a massive Government investment in Infrastructure. A trillion or two dollars spent fixing Americas highways, airports, electrical grid, levees, and schools. A couple of million construction jobs - and a hundred thousand jobs selling the concrete and bulldozers necessary to get the work done.

    But no. We can't do that. Because Fox News and Rush Limbaugh have convinced these poor saps - getting by on less than $40,000 a year - that Government spending is out of control (lie #1) and even if it was - that (lie #2) its really a problem for someone struggling to make his minimum payment on his 27% APR credit card balance.
     
  8. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #8
    Do you have any evidence that the number of people owning guns has increased? From the data I was able to find it looks like overall gun ownership is going down, but the increases in gun sales are from people buying multiple guns. The Conservative media's push for guns could certainly be a part of it as access to guns certainly makes a successful suicide much more likely, but I think economic reasons might play into it a bit more. As you mentioned diminished job opportunities may play a part in it. Also it seems like job opportunities have at best been staying the same for white males while they have been improving for other groups, so that may be part of it as well.
     
  9. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #9
    You are correct in the fact that the overall percentage of households with guns is decreasing. What I suspect - but have no way of knowing- is that, of the household owning firearms, more of them have access to the sort of firearm used in successful suicides. Its difficult and/or very messy to shoot yourself with a rifle or shotgun. Much easier to do so with a handgun.

    A couple of weeks ago I made a vow to stay away from commenting in gun threads. I'm going to do my best to keep up with that commitment. So, no more from me on that aspect of the disturbing trend in middle-aged mortality. But I do think - given the significance of suicide in the overall mortality figures - that it bears mentioning.
     
  10. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #10
    Death threads. Always morbid.

    "The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out, the worms play pinochle on your snout.
    They eat your eyes, they eat your nose, they eat the jelly between your toes."
     
  11. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #11
    Diminished job opportunities. Her that would mean the democrats who passed NAFTA & TPP are to blame
     
  12. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #12
    Neither Germany nor China - where the vast majority of our imports come from - are party to either NAFTA or the TPP. So its hard to blame trade agreements for the decline in US manufacturing.

    The decline of US manufacturing jobs, especially in items such as steel; electronics; and clothes, was all but inevitable. What was not inevitable was the failure of the US Congress to take adequate steps to help workers and companies retrain and retool to take advantage of the opportunities presented.

    For example, for most of the past year the Tea Party Republican members of the Congress have tried to block funding for the US Import-Export bank. It was only when major companies like GE started pointing out how many US jobs this was endangering that things finally turned around.

    The biggest threat to middle-aged white US men is not al-Quaeda or ISIL. Its not Barack Obama and the Democrats. Its not Media Matters or the ACLU. Its not the Brady Campaign or the New York Times. Its not Mexican immigrants. Its not even the Chinese factories of Shenzhen or Guangzhou.

    Its the Republicans they keep electing to Congress.
     
  13. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #13
    Suicide is supported by liberals
    Drug use supported by liberals
    By your own admission you have no clue his things are happening but yeah , 2+2= faux news is to blame
     
  14. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #14


    I'd ask you to cite your source for this extraordinary claim.
     
  15. Happybunny macrumors 68000

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    IMO a lot of the anger issues that you talk about can be seen on this forum everyday.

    It boils down to two simple facts.

    These mostly men have seen their dreams and hopes destroyed (One wage earner families, also house owners), they are going to be worse off than their fathers.

    Their absolute belief that it’s somebody else’s fault, their motto I didn’t have that (Section 8, Head Start, SNAP,) therefore nobody should.

    As SD would say they just made BAD choices.






    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/24/happiest-countries-in-the-world-2015_n_7138002.html
     
  16. impulse462 Suspended

    impulse462

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  17. Atomic Walrus macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    That's right everyone, make this a Red/Blue political issue. Fight along the lines we've carefully designed for you to divide yourself across. Your neighbors are the enemy, your two political parties are distinct and totally not fabricated media constructs to keep you bickering.
     
  18. impulse462 Suspended

    impulse462

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    #18
    I didn't make anything into a partisan issue.
     
  19. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #19
    How can Fox News be killing middle-aged white men when their audience is primarily angry, old white men? Median age is 68.
     
  20. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #20
    If we accept the claim that middle-aged white Americans are dying at an alarming rate through largely self-inflicted causes - I think it only reasonable to ask what might be done to reverse the trend.

    One side proposes giving people easier access to health insurance. Proposes spending on domestic infrastructure. And funding worker training and education programs.

    The other side proposes giving more tax breaks to multimillionaires and making it ever easier for people to buy handguns. (Oh, and defunding Planned Parenthood and investigating a terrorist attack in Benghazi.)

    Forgive me for drawing what seems to be reasonably logical conclusions.
     
  21. impulse462 Suspended

    impulse462

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    #21
    ...What? Is that your definition of a "logical conclusion?" Do you have any evidence/data to back this claim up? Only then would you have a basis for a LOGICAL conclusion. You sound like anti-climate change people.
     
  22. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    Is Detroit a crisp hole thanks to NAFTA? Sure looks like it, wonder how many non-Union jobs were list as well , but yeah,, faux news
     
  23. vrDrew thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #23

    Name one thing the Republican caucus has done in the past seven years that would - by any reasonable standard - make the lot of middle-aged white men better?
     
  24. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #24
    Of course he doesn't. But that won't stop him from posting crap.

    @vrDrew thinks that Democrats/Liberals are the source of all that is good in the world, while Republicans/Conservatives are the source of all evil.
     
  25. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #25
    Difficult to come up with a plan when no one really knows what the root cause is yet. Suicide, drugs and alcohol look like depression to me. Given that this cohort has been hit particularly hard since the financial crisis with inflation adjusted incomes shrinking along with rising costs (hence the anger towards a rising tax burden), its small wonder they are depressed but that is just my speculation.
     

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