This article from the LA Times is the epitome of the efforts of the media and news journals to give false perceptions.

After reading four paragraphs into the article the ONLY thing one can surmise is what is the point of this story?

Here was the headline:

Marine suicides in 2008 at a yearly high since Iraq invasion
Forty-one active-duty Marines are possible or confirmed suicides for the year.

Now this gives one the immediate impression that because of the stress of the war in Iraq, Marine suicide rates are UP!

Here is the by-line:

The rate per 100,000 troops remains about the same due to the Corps' increased size, a report says.

It remained the same?? So then what is the point of this article and such inflammatory headlines?

But it gets the fourth paragraph into the article you read the following:

The Marine suicide rate is still below that for civilian populations with similar demographics -- 19.5 per 100,000.

That's right people; the Marine suicide rate is LOWER by THREE percent than the regular civilian population.

Now look back at the headlines and try to explain to me the purpose of such a story. Could it be that the media know most readers rarely get past the headlines and wish to sensationalize data that is mundane?

So let me correct the headlines to fit the story better: "Marine suicide rates are still far lower than civilian rates even accounting for the stress of serving in Iraq" But alas, this headline is too factual and not sensational enough to grab people who hate our military lemming like attention.

Carry on; you now have MORE information about how the media attempts to SHAPE opinion rather than report the news.

Marine suicides in 2008 at a yearly high since Iraq invasion - Los Angeles Times