Daily Archive: March 14, 2017

Japan’s suicide statistics don’t tell the real story

According to the government’s 2012 “White Paper on Suicide,” in 2011 there were 30,651 cases recorded of people taking their own lives. The motives listed were in the following descending order of problems related to health; daily life; family; and work.

But here’s an odd thing: The reasons for the suicide were only determined in 73 percent of cases — in more than 25 percent of cases they were for reasons unknown. Many of those cases perhaps presented no reason because they weren’t suicides at all.

According to the NPA, since 1998 there have been 45 cases of murder initially ruled by police to have been due to natural causes or suicide. Among those, one was a man from Nagano Prefecture whose murder in 1980 was treated as a suicide until the killer confessed in 2000 — after the statute of limitations had passed.

The NPA has admitted that in Japan only 10 percent of suspicious deaths result in an autopsy. However, when a death initially appears to be due to suicide, only 5 percent are autopsied. The lack of a comprehensive use of autopsies was only brought to the public’s attention after several cases of “missed murders” came to light. The 45 known cases may just be “the edge of the graveyard” as some cops have put it.

From: Japan’s suicide statistics don’t tell the real story | The Japan Times

Fight Club’s dark fantasies have become an even darker reality

If, meanwhile, you followed the Gamergate problems a few years ago, saw those message boards develop into nodes of far-right agitation, or had the misfortune to hear the likes of Milo Yiannopolous, you will find many of Fight Club’s ideas about carving out a niche for men eerily familiar; frighteningly so, given the wider context of the book and the violence at its core.

Rereading the novel in 2016 is chilling. Researching the book online, I found myself falling down a dark wormhole of fascistic websites that quote big chunks of David Fincher’s film adaptation as parts of their credo; even though parts are almost verbatim from the book, alt-right types tend to quote the film – because they either don’t agree with the overall message of Palahniuk’s book or they haven’t bothered to read it.

From: Fight Club’s dark fantasies have become an even darker reality | Books | The Guardian