Delaying death (Re: 2001 Ig Nobel Awards)

Lisa Dusseault
Fri, 5 Oct 2001 11:39:59 -0700

I have a vague memory of this kind of thing applying to birthdays,
anniversaries, reunions and holidays.  That people were more likely to live
until just after some important desirable event, rather than just before.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: []On Behalf Of
> Russell Turpin
> Sent: Friday, October 05, 2001 11:29 AM
> To:
> Subject: Delaying death (Re: 2001 Ig Nobel Awards)
> Gordon Mohr:
> >My faves are the (apparently legit) research on "death elasticity", that
> >people postpone their death to qualify for improved estate tax
> changes. ..
> There is actually something quite fascinating here. There
> is other evidence that people apparently live longer when
> there is some near event to which they look forward. This
> study merely shows that even something as stupid as
> estate tax change might qualify as such an event.  The
> interesting thing is that this phenomena presents itself
> with regard to deaths (a) where there seems to be very
> little voluntary aspect, e.g., heart attacks, not suicides,
> and (b) very little in way of a causal mechanism has been
> proposed. Were I an epidemiologist, I would propose a
> project to identify the kinds of death where this phenomena
> plays the largest role, with some hope of identifiying
> possible causal mechanisms.
> Russell
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