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Mortality Rate Climbs for Underinformed White Males

Brookings Institution released a study of mortality and morbidity in the 21st century.

Case and Deaton find that while midlife mortality rates continue to fall among all education classes in most of the rich world, middle-aged non-Hispanic whites in the U.S. with a high school diploma or less have experienced increasing midlife mortality since the late 1990s. This is due to both rises in the number of “deaths of despair”—death by drugs, alcohol and suicide—and to a slowdown in progress against mortality from heart disease and cancer, the two largest killers in middle age.

The combined effect means that mortality rates of whites with no more than a high school degree, which were around 30 percent lower than mortality rates of blacks in 1999, grew to be 30 percent higher than blacks by 2015.

[More..]

US News and World Report writes an article on the study, "White and Dying in America", with the tag line, "The morality rate among under-educated whites in America is rising, which explains why so many voted for Trump."

These are exactly the areas where Trump did his best. He over-performed the most in counties with the highest drug, alcohol and suicide mortality rates, according to Shannon Monnat, a political science researcher at Penn State University. She determined he also did the best in the counties with a large working class and high economic stress.

...It’s hard to sugar-coat these findings. To be brutally honest: mortality rates for people in the middle of their life in rich countries all over the world are falling – except for under-educated whites in the United States.

....The rise in mortality rates for working class whites appears to be rooted equally in poor job opportunities and social dysfunction – which explains the anger that under-educated white voters carried with them into the 2016 presidential election. And this anger is what propelled Trump into the White House.

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  • Display: Sort:
    Honest truths need to be told (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by vicndabx on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 08:18:23 AM EST
    about what we will need to pay to invest in hard hit communities across the country. Snake oil short term fixes will not work. We need to focus energies around a few specific proposals IMO.

    My hope is the Democrats will pick up and run with some of the ideas our standard bearers proposed during the last election. Problem will be how to get our child-like attention span media to pay attention.

    I absolutely agree (none / 0) (#2)
    by Yman on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 08:45:01 AM EST
    My concern is whether the American public has the patience to give real solutions the time to work, out whether many of them will continue to buy the promises of a snake oil salesman who promises quick, easy (and fake) solutions to complex, long-term problems.  Like promising new coal jobs for a collapsing (and destructive) industry, blaming trade agreements for jobs lost to automation, etc.

    Parent
    This is one of our biggest problems, (none / 0) (#3)
    by vicndabx on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 09:30:16 AM EST
    lack of patience.  TBF, we do need to pass/provide short term assistance to those that need it while we wait for any gains to take hold. People gotta eat.

    Absolutely right, folks need to be told the truth on dying industries.  

    Parent

    Exactly (none / 0) (#4)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 09:38:34 AM EST
    The rise in mortality rates for working class whites appears to be rooted equally in poor job opportunities and social dysfunction - which explains the anger that under-educated white voters carried with them into the 2016 presidential election. And this anger is what propelled Trump into the White House.


    Lashing (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by FlJoe on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 09:49:39 AM EST
    out in anger inevitably ends up with bad if not disastrous consequences.

    Parent
    After they shot themselves (none / 0) (#6)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 10:48:01 AM EST
    ...in the foot by electing Tr*mp, gangrene set in, because they didn't have adequate medical care, by their own choice.

    Parent
    The problem (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Mar 28, 2017 at 11:16:52 AM EST
    is they fell for a con in their desperation and blamed others. Neither of those are a solution to their problems.

    Parent