Thursday, March 31, 2005

Life expectency

It would be clear, if someone were going round with a hammer smashing people's skulls in, that they were being murdered, having their lives foreshortened by the work of human hands.

When, though, people are having the span of life cut becauase of poverty, people don't start to consider this to be a breed of mass murder. It is the silent killer.

I'm not just talking about the fact that a person ins, say, the Gambia has a life expectency of about 55 years - a horrendous statistic in itself, though. Within the UK there are vast disproportions of longevity.

This PDF from the Office of National Statistics shows a division of life expectency witthin England & Wales by what they term class - which is actually by braod occupation type. Nonetheless, it shows that male unskilled labourers can expect to live on average to 71.1 yrs as compared with a professional who may expect 78.5 yrs. A difference of 7.4 years. the asstonishing thing, though, is that since 1972 that gap has grown. Although life expectency has risen overall, the gap has increased further. In 1972 unskilled manual labourers could expect to live to 66.5 yrs as compared with a professonal's 72.0 yrs.

Here is a nice chart of the same story.

This isn't all though, a swift look at regional disparities (with all the attendent distortions they bring taken into account, for instance that there are many many poor people in teh south, it's just there are also a lot of richer peopel down here than compared to the north) shows that there is a signbificant difference in life expectency within the UK alone.

Simple facts, but not ones that will come up in the Capitalist Party's campaign, nor will it be an election priority at all. It seems we are being hammered by capitalism.

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