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dadmonson

How Can Objectivists Bring Down The Suicide Rate?

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Regarding the Famous and Rich Chef who recently ended his own life:

An Altruist would say something like: Money can't buy happiness, as you can see.  His job was to enjoy himself and look what happened to him.  Help other people and make them happy to prevent tragedies like these.   You would want someone to care about you."

A Christian would say something like:  "It's important to have faith, above all else it's important to follow God and as a result, you will discover a purpose that fulfills you."

What would an Objectivist message be to people?

Edited by dadmonson

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"Money can't buy happiness" is pretty good advice. Taken in the right sense, it is part of the message of Francisco's "money speech".
Good advice (which could come from Objectivists and non-Objectivists ) would be things like "find / discover a purpose", and "live a life where you are honest to yourself, not living a pretense for others". 
I don't know Bourdain's story, but he has hinted that he was an alcoholic at some point, so he might have a history of psychological issues.

It seems to me that sometimes when fame comes to people, they feel they do not deserve it. Knowing what they know about themselves, they see that with one or two twists of luck, they could easily have been obscure and unknown. I assume this leaves them with a huge sense of "impostor syndrome", which leaves one feeling that one is living one's life for others, and that it is all a sham that only exists in the imagination of those others. (Not saying Bourdain is an example of this though.)

Still, stories like this aren't really big surprises.

 

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13 hours ago, dadmonson said:

What would an Objectivist message be to people?

That the more seriously you take an irrational belief system, the less likely you are to be able to keep your sanity while living in a reality that contradicts your beliefs at every turn...and altruism and religion are two such irrational belief systems.

There are many other beliefs and practices that lead to mental illness (depression is a side effect of addiction, for instance), and mental illness can also have genetic causes, but altruism and religion are definitely worth mentioning first.

And the main cause of suicide in current societies (except for Switzerland) is mental illness.

As for Switzerland, assisted suicide is legal there, and the chief cause of suicide is rational choice, in response to a terminal illness diagnosis. I don't see why that would be a problem Objectivists would want to solve. Objectivism doesn't pass moral judgement on such decisions...and therefor, I don't see why reducing suicide rates would be a goal for Objectivists. The goal should be to prevent suicides caused by mental illness...not all suicides.

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10 hours ago, softwareNerd said:

I don't know Bourdain's story, but he has hinted that he was an alcoholic at some point, so he might have a history of psychological issues. 

He was a recovering drug addict (he was able to quit hard drugs before he became successful). More recently (through the famous years), he wrote about how he abused alcohol to "treat' depression caused by his divorce...and it's unclear if he ever managed to pull out of that cycle.

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