Public Health Crisis Roundup

Gloucester, MA: Alleged teen pregnancy 'pact' quadruples the normal number of pregnancies at Gloucester High School. It's a localized public health anomaly that will be sensationalized by the media, and studied by scholars for years.

Japan: The number of domestic suicides topped 33,000 in 2007, the second-highest recorded number since the nation began compiling them. The article correctly points out that Japan does not have the highest suicide rate in the G8. That would be Russia. But as Parag Khanna and others point out, Russia cannot be considered a part of the elite industrialized world, given its shrinking population and increasingly vast, sparsely populated regions. Russia is too big, too corrupt, and is losing too many smart people. But that's another post for another time.