Austerity linked to increase in suicides: science news roundup

Links to some of the most interesting science stories reported this week relating to both political and social affairs and health news from which everyone may benefit. You can comment on these reports at the end of the round up.

Male suicide on rise as result of austerity, report suggests

“These results have profound health and economic policy implications and raise substantial questions on the prolonged application of fiscal austerity without any safety nets….” Thousands of young people (ages 10-24) as well as the elderly (age 65+) are killing themselves out of desperation due to the imposition of austerity measures on people in the EU. These measures cause a rise in unemployment, a cut in pensions and other effects bringing about extreme hardships. Capitalism’s Profit Before People drive is causing widespread misery throughout the EU (and not only there).

Emissions targets are out of reach without a massive technological shift in Europe’s basic industries

Unless there is a serious retooling the industrial base in Europe to halt massive pollution it will be impossible to reach the emissions reduction goals set for midcentury. It is possible to save the climate but will private profit driven industries actually make the changes needed? Will bourgeois governments force them to do so? If not capitalism will destroy us all sooner rather than later.

Preventive care drops when government cuts close women’s health clinics, research says

This article shows that when women’s health care clinics are closed as a result of the Republican assault on the constitutional right to abortion large numbers of women can no longer receive the preventive care necessary to detect cancers and other illnesses. The claim that other clinics and health services will cover those formerly receiving treatment at the closed clinics is not true. Republican politicians, in their attacks on Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers, are engaged in a massive assault on women’s health, especially the health of lower income and minority women, and their policies will lead to needless deaths that preventive medical care could have avoided. These reckless unremorseful misogynists must be removed from power.

Sobering picture of urban education in the U.S.

A study of 50 major cities shows that urban school districts are failing to provide

a basic education to many students especially low income and minority students.

It is the responsibility of the state to provide proper educational opportunities to all students and in failing to educate low income and minority students the state is perpetuating institutional racism. Parents, students, and teachers and their unions will have to organize to remove from office those racist politicians who refuse to fully upgrade and fund equal education for all.

Fracking industry wells associated with premature birth

“Expectant mothers who live near active natural gas wells operated by the fracking industry in Pennsylvania are at an increased risk of giving birth prematurely and for having high-risk pregnancies, new research suggests.” What else needs to be said to convince the state not to issue tracking permits! The scientists suggest that state officials “consider” these finding when giving out permits. Who can tell? Maybe it is just a coincidence.

Ancient genome from Africa sequenced for the first time

The first ancient human genome from Africa to be sequenced has revealed that a wave of migration back into Africa from Western Eurasia around 3,000 years ago was up to twice as significant as previously thought, and affected the genetic make-up of populations across the entire African continent. (Science Daily)

Photo: A demonstrator wears a headband reading ” 9 suicides a day, 3 because of evictions” during a protest near the Spanish Parliament in Madrid, April 25, 2013. The protest, mostly against austerity measures, comes on the day that Spain’s jobless figures were released. Spain’s jobless rate shot up to a record 27.2 percent. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)


CONTRIBUTOR

Thomas Riggins
Thomas Riggins

Thomas Riggins is associate editor of Political Affairs. Reach him at pabooks@politicalaffairs.net.

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