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The Equality Trust | Working to improve the quality of life in the UK by reducing economic inequality
[See also:
(book) "The Spirit Level"
The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better[1] is a book by Richard G. Wilkinson and Kate Pickett,[2] published in 2009 by Allen Lane. The book is published in the US by Bloomsbury Press (December, 2009) with the new sub-title: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger.[3] It was then published in a paperback second edition (United Kingdom) in November 2010 by Penguin Books with the subtitle, Why Equality is Better for Everyone.[4]

The book argues that there are "pernicious effects that inequality has on societies: eroding trust, increasing anxiety and illness, (and) encouraging excessive consumption".[5] It claims that for each of eleven different health and social problems: physical health, mental health, drug abuse, education, imprisonment, obesity, social mobility, trust and community life, violence, teenage pregnancies, and child well-being, outcomes are significantly worse in more unequal countries, whether rich or poor.[1] The book contains graphs that are available online.[6]

In 2010, the authors published responses to questions about their analysis on the Equality Trust website.[7] As of September 2012, the book had sold more than 150,000 copies in English.[8] It is available in 23 foreign editions.

"The Spirit Level authors: why society is more unequal than ever"

[follow-up book] "The Inner Level: How More Equal Societies Reduce Stress, Restore Sanity and Improve Everyone’s Wellbeing"
Why is the incidence of mental illness in the UK twice that in Germany? Why are Americans three times more likely than the Dutch to develop gambling problems? Why is child well-being so much worse in New Zealand than Japan? As this groundbreaking study demonstrates, the answer to all these hinges on inequality.

In The Spirit Level Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett put inequality at the centre of public debate by showing conclusively that less-equal societies fare worse than more equal ones across everything from education to life expectancy. The Inner Level now explains how inequality affects us individually, how it alters how we think, feel and behave. It sets out the overwhelming evidence that material inequalities have powerful psychological effects: when the gap between rich and poor increases, so does the tendency to define and value ourselves and others in terms of superiority and inferiority. A deep well of data and analysis is drawn upon to empirically show, for example, that low social status is associated with elevated levels of stress, and how rates of anxiety and depression are intimately related to the inequality which makes that status paramount.

Wilkinson and Pickett describe how these responses to hierarchies evolved, and why the impacts of inequality on us are so severe. In doing so, they challenge the conception that humans are innately competitive and self-interested. They undermine, too, the idea that inequality is the product of 'natural' differences in individual ability. This book sheds new light on many of the most urgent problems facing societies today, but it is not just an index of our ills. It demonstrates that societies based on fundamental equalities, sharing and reciprocity generate much higher levels of well-being, and lays out the path towards them.

"Does inequality cause suicide, drug abuse and mental illness?"

"“The Inner Level” seeks to push that debate forward, by linking inequality to a crisis of mental health. This time the authors’ argument focuses on status anxiety: stress related to fears about individuals’ places in social hierarchies. Anxiety declines as incomes rise, they show, but is higher at all levels in more unequal countries—to the extent that the richest 10% of people in high-inequality countries are more socially anxious than all but the bottom 10% in low-inequality countries. Anxiety contributes to a variety of mental-health problems, including depression, narcissism and schizophrenia—rates of which are alarming in the West, the authors say, and rise with inequality.

Manifestations of mental illness, such as self-harm, drug and alcohol abuse and problem gambling, all seem to get worse with income dispersion, too. Such relationships seem to apply within countries as well as between them. Damaging drug use is higher in more unequal neighbourhoods of New York City, in more unequal American states and in more unequal countries. The authors emphasise that it is a person’s relative position rather than absolute income that matters most. A study of 30,000 Britons found that an individual’s place in the income hierarchy predicted the incidence of mental stress more accurately than absolute income did. And in America, relative income is more closely linked to depression than absolute income. It is not enough to lift all boats, their work suggests, if the poshest vessels are always buoyed up more than the humblest.

The fact that relative status matters so much is a result of human beings’ intrinsically social nature, Ms Pickett and Mr Wilkinson argue. Group interaction and co-operation have been an essential component of humanity’s evolutionary success; indeed, the authors say, its social nature helped drive the growth of human brains. Across primates, they write, the size of the neocortex—a part of the brain responsible for higher-level cognitive functions—varies with the typical group size of a species. Living in complex social groups is hard cognitive work. Survival requires an understanding of roles within the social hierarchy, and intuition of what others are thinking. Thus people are necessarily sensitive to their status within groups, and to social developments that threaten it.

Such hierarchies are found in all human societies. But as inequality rises, differences in status become harder to ignore. There is more to be gained or lost by moving from one rung on the ladder to another. And however much some maintain that disparities in pay-cheques do not correspond to differences in human worth, such well-meaning pieties feel hollow when high-rollers earn hundreds or thousands of times what ordinary folk take home. Money cannot buy everything, but it can buy most things. The steeper the income gradient, the less secure everyone becomes, in both their self-respect and their sense of the community’s esteem.

And so people compensate. They take pills, to steel their nerves or dull the pain. Some cut themselves. Some adopt a more submissive posture, avoiding contact with others. Yet such withdrawal can feed on itself, depriving recluses of the social interaction that is important to mental health, undermining relationships and careers and contributing to economic hardship.

Others respond in the opposite way, by behaving more aggressively and egotistically. Studies of narcissistic tendencies showed a steep increase between 1982 and 2006, the authors report; 30% more Americans displayed narcissistic characteristics at the end of the period than at the beginning. Scrutiny of successive American cohorts found a progressive rise in those listing wealth and fame as important goals (above fulfilment and community). Over time, more people cited money as the main motivation for attending college (rather than intellectual enrichment).

Domineering responses to anxiety are associated with loss of empathy and delusions of grandeur. Thus highly successful people often display narcissistic or even psychopathic behaviour. In surveys, the rich are generally less empathetic and more likely to think they deserve special treatment than others. Modern capitalism, the authors suggest, selects for assertiveness, for a lack of sentimentality in business and comfort in sacking underlings, and for showy displays of economic strength. From the top to the bottom of the income spectrum, people use conspicuous consumption and other means of enhancing their image to project status.

The least secure are often the most likely to exaggerate their qualities. For example, countries with lower average life-expectancy tend to do better on measures of self-reported health; 54% of Japanese say they are in good health compared with 80% of Americans, though the Japanese live five years longer on average. Whereas 70% of Swedes consider themselves to be above-average drivers, 90% of Americans do. Such figures cast declamations of America’s greatness, and the politicians who make them, in a new light."

"The Inner Level review – how more equal societies reduce stress and improve wellbeing"
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/jun/20/the-inner-level-review ]

[via: https://www.instagram.com/p/BmquJ7Ngvme/ ]
equality  inequality  society  trust  anxiety  well-being  stress  mentalhealth  uk  economics  community  socialmobility  class  education  drugs  drugabuse  health  violence  illness  consumption  hierarchy  horizontality  mentalillness  status  self-harm  gambling  depression  narcissism  schizophrenia  relativity  excess  cooperation  egotism  selfishness  empathy  dunning–krugereffect  greatness  politics  lifeexpectancy  japan  sweden  us  driving  capitalism  latecapitalism  fame  fulfillment  money  motivation  colleges  universities  exceptionalism  assertiveness  aggressiveness  richardwilkinson  katepickett  growth  erichfromm 
august 2018 by robertogreco
The Lawyer, the Addict
“The Lawyer, the Addict” #addiction #substanceuse #drugabuse #opiodepidemic
drugabuse  substanceuse  opiodepidemic  addiction  from instapaper
july 2017 by JonClodfelter
The Chowder House Rules
Fresh out of prison, Dean’s job prospects aren’t too bright. When Sam sets him up at some janky chowder house on the wharf, he’s just got to be grateful for the opportunity to work. The calamari and the onion rings have the same breading that comes out of a plastic bag, and the chefs are hopped up on Vicodin during service. Shit is always hitting the fan - when the ticket machine keeps spitting, when the drains are clogged and spewing scum all over the floor, when the vegetable purveyors rip them off again - but it’s still better than prison, right?

Once upon a time, Dean loved cooking. Once Castiel put passion into his food. They’re going to burn out before tourist season even starts.
author:spnergitout  fandom:Supernatural  pairing:Castiel/Dean  angst  drama  drugabuse  au  au:human  au:chef  cooking!character  complete 
may 2017 by yuurei
Ice and alcohol: the scary reality in hospitality today | Hospitality Magazine
RT @Hospitalityed: Ice and alcohol: the scary reality in #hospitality today http://t.co/C1DMg8LHqM #ice #drugs #drugabuse
drugabuse  hospitality  via:packrati.us  drugs  ice 
august 2015 by Kburgin
where we went - elektrify - Check Please! (Webcomic) [Archive of Our Own]
Once in the car, Kent does three things: he googles "valium+vodka"; he shakes Jack awake; and he takes a napkin and wipes the tears away from Jack's face.

or: Parse was the one who found Jack during his overdose.

or: In Defense of Kent Parson.
checkplease  parson/zimmerman  drugabuse 
april 2015 by themadstork
Hand sanitizer ingestion linked to 2 Ontario deaths - Toronto - CBC News
...wow! 1) don't eat hand sanitizer 2) some hand sanitizers contain undeclared methanol O_o
handsanitizer  foodsafety  drugabuse 
october 2013 by shadowspar
A Twist of Fate - Chapter 1 - cloud_wolfbane - Sherlock (TV) [Archive of Our Own]
In a cocaine bender Sherlock forgets to take his heat suppressants and spends his heat with a soldier readying for deployment. While he remembers the man's kindness he does not remember his name. In a move even Sherlock isn't sure he can deduce, he decides to keep the child.

What will he do 10 years later when he meets Dr. John Watson at Barts?
sherlock  sherlock/john  holmes/watson  omega  au  kidfic  drugabuse  10000-50000 
august 2013 by Kaitlyn
The Hand that Holds the Leash
Silva never went rogue, and is one of the top agents of MI6 - along with Bond, who may not be as good with computers, but is arguably the better shot. The two get along (even if Silva is an egomaniac), and MI6 is running smoothly. The only drama they have outside of missions is the fact that Silva wants to be Quartermaster, and is willing to bully anyone to get the job. Unfortunately, he's smart enough to get it, being a computer genius with few morals.

But then the unthinkable happens: a hacker appears, a hacker who can take apart MI6 like a child taking apart a puzzle. The hacker is fast, erratic, and more ingenius than even the outraged Silva.

And Bond is intrigued, and amazed despite himself.
author:Only_1_Truth  fandom:JamesBond  pairing:00Q  complete  angst  drama  au  hurt/comfort  drugabuse  domestic!fic  cooking!character 
june 2013 by yuurei
state of readiness - girlguidejones - Teen Wolf (TV) [Archive of Our Own]
After barely defeating the Alpha pack, Derek is determined to give his own pack members the one-on-one training they need to ensure everyone is ready for the next enemy that comes along. He sets out with a goal of eliminating everyone's biggest weakness, but if he thought his pack would let self-improvement pass their Alpha by, he's sadly mistaken. When Stiles is chosen to mentor Derek, things between them change forever.
f:teenwolf  pack!fic  slow.build  drugabuse  p:derek/stiles  alpha!derek  c:sheriff.stilinski  rating:nc-17  k:knotting 
june 2013 by miss_speller
Back in the Day - KeelieThompson1 - Sherlock (TV) [Archive of Our Own]
John's drunk and some idiot's got himself high in the bathroom. It's a shame he's the only trainee doctor in the house.

A Johnlock story set while John is at university and an AU in that this time Sherlock is the one who's a few years older and is trying to find something to keep his interest in London after getting bored and being thrown out of Uni.
sherlock  sherlock/john  au  university  drugabuse 
november 2012 by Kaitlyn
Such Great Heights - Not_You - The Avengers (2012) [Archive of Our Own]
Clint is a window washer, and Coulson is the business executive who falls in love with him after watching him wash the windows of his 117th story office.
drugabuse  au:realworld  slash  clint/coulson  natasha/pepper  Avengers  firstmeetings  firsttime  sweet  clueless 
october 2012 by StallionofFire

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