Fatal OD, Unintended OD

To the casual observer, drinking or drug use is a form of slow suicide.

One thing that’s long puzzled me — how we go about reliably determining when a fatal overdose represents a suicide, and when it doesn't. That's important because it’s generally agreed that the majority of OD deaths are in fact unintended.

It's become more of an issue in recent years due to the work of economists Ann Case & Angus Deaton and their book, Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism. It's gained considerable attention in both the academic and general media. Here’s a short video wherein the two social scientists briefly explain their research:



I’ve never been entirely comfortable with the inclusion of overdose deaths under a heading such as 'deaths of despair' . Especially now, with fentanyl having superseded heroin among users in many areas. It adds a whole new dimension of unpredictability to drug use. I can see the relationship between suicide and despair (defined as the ‘utter loss of hope.’) But as I said before, most overdoses don't...

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Sad Sacklers

It’s a strategy we’ve seen employed again and again in recent years – total denial of responsibility as a first line of defense, not the last.

Cannabis and Crime

Incarceration can be costly, disruptive to families, and appears to do little to deter future drug use. And though people do change while incarcerated, it isn’t always for the better.

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The Dilemma of Reactance

Psychological reactance is a common issue in addiction treatment wherever it’s been mandated as a consequence of an offense, or as an alternative to punishment.

The Dilemma of Reactance

Psychological reactance is a common issue in addiction treatment wherever it’s been mandated as a consequence of an offense, or as an alternative to punishment.

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