The Scots are sick

David Bell and David Blanchflower report:

On almost all measures of physical health, Scots fare worse than residents of any other region of the UK and often worse than the rest of Europe. Deaths from chronic liver disease and lung cancer are particularly prevalent in Scotland. The self-assessed wellbeing of Scots is lower than that of the English or Welsh, even after taking into account any differences in characteristics. Scots also suffer from higher levels of self-assessed depression or phobia, accidental death and suicide than those in other parts of Great Britain. This result is particularly driven by outcomes in Strathclyde and is consistent with the high scores for other measures of social deprivation in this area. On average, indicators of social capital in Scotland are no worse than in England or Wales. Detailed analysis within Scotland, however, shows that social capital indicators for the Strathclyde area are relatively low. We argue that these problems seem unlikely to be fixed by indirect policies aimed at raising economic growth.

Here is the full paper, but there is no dummy variable for who eats deep-fried Mars bars.  Here is the Strathclyde Hilton.  On another note, I’ve long thought that the Scots and Irish are central to understanding the evolution of the American national character.

Elsewhere on the NBER front, here is a new paper on self-deception and voting.


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