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mental health

27 year old Jared Trent Atkins, of Phoenix, Arizona, USA used Iridium-192 in his work where it was used, in sealed capsules, to examine underground pipes. For reasons not made public, he became suicidal and stole some of the material. But first he committed several acts of violence unrelated to the theft of the material. All signs were that he was setting up a situation where he could invite "suicide by cop," as the USA entertainingly puts it. There is nothing entertaining about the spiral of behaviour in this case.

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We all moan that we are having a bad day, that we need something ranging from coffee to a punch-bag, make hopeful statements that the universe (or whatever) will make tomorrow a better day.

Sometimes we tell ourselves, or each other, to pull our socks up and get on with making something good happen, even though we know, in our heart of hearts that we are deluding ourselves and that, in truth, there are times when we have no control over the present and no influence over the future.

Sometimes, there are no better days.

The New Year sees a major overhaul of California's gun control laws. Is it just a flash in the pan?

It would be easy to think of dozens of bad-taste humorous comments to make about the conduct of Iain Farrimond but to do so would be terribly cruel. The circumstances in which he has found himself are awful but so serious that there can be no alternative to serious punishment.

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