Falling suicide rate:
There is good news from the excellent Economist journal. They make no bones at all about having been globalist since 1843. That’s fair. You expect their mandate to have a particular slant. And my experience is that they hire excellent talent, sincerely try to get their facts right and include a pinch of humor. Any sins of omission, as it were, I do not hold against them. I try to look for information from as many directions as I can manage. So when they announce, “Staying alive” Economist Vol. 429 No. 9119 Nov. 24, 2018 page 13, that the world’s suicide rate is falling, I take it at face value rejoicing. And I am interested in their explanation.
It seems not to be a diffuse effect, but to be driven by certain demographic groups, such as young Asian women, possibly because of trouble with husbands now less intense. Old people are at greater risk than younger people, but that is decreasing possibly because of decreasing poverty in that group. And urbanization means people moving to places where there are less convenient means of suicide, such as less access to poisons and guns. That strikes me as odd; traffic and high buildings are more common in cities, but I suppose they have done their homework. And the article does mention some policy decisions that might be helpful.
But the real shocker is that the US is a total outlier. We have a rising suicide rate. The vulnerable demographic is white, middle aged, poorly educated men. The Economist, as I would expect, attributes this to their being bypassed to economic upturns and suffering badly during downturns. The logic that limiting the flight of jobs overseas and the immigration of cheap labor do not appeal to them sufficiently to get mentioned. Fair enough. They get to choose what to notice.
And of course, that means I do to. Cultural anxiety and the breakup of the tight little communities that nature requires for adequate fertility and which nature enforces with profound feeling, I think those things are more prevalent here than elsewhere.