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View Diary: Anti-Capitalist Meet-Up: Socialist Venezuela in Top Five of Happiest Countries; Capitalist US is ... (116 comments)

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  •  Was Anyone Doing Essentially This Survey in the (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NY brit expat, Justina, slatsg, apimomfan2

    1960's, before both our parties decided to run the economy off the rails? I'm guessing "no."

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 03:53:37 PM PDT

    •  It is of pretty recent construction (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Justina

      and that is why really it hasn't been used before; it is simply coincidental rather than causal as far as I know.

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 03:56:09 PM PDT

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    •  Happiness research has been going on a while now.. (4+ / 0-)

      The best and oldest data I found on the topic, indicates we have been falling off in happiness as the income disparity increases. And check where the US falls on this 1995 graph of well being research: graph and here

      Bhutan has been calculating the Gross National Happinesssince 1972. They have tried to export the idea to the West with some positive results.

      Satisfaction with Life Index since 2005
      Happy Planet Index since 2006 (Britain #74 and US #114)

      World Happiness Map in 2006

      De air is de air. What can be done?

      by TPau on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:29:28 PM PDT

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      •  I've seen some economists calculating a (3+ / 0-)

        happiness index; that is who are behind the index that is supposedly being calculated in the UK. They are unfortunately mainstream economists so I am a bit skeptical about the construction, but I do need to examine it in more detail.

        Interesting that the linkage between income inequality and happiness is so apparent, but I am certain that it is probably more than that ... it probably has something to do with how the revenue that is taken in as taxation that is ensuring the narrowing of income inequality is spent in healthcare, education, housing, employment, social services. I also would not be surprised in the least if the sense of community that arises when all are provided for has some role in the measurement and also a cooperative rather than competitive relationship with other members of the community.

        "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

        by NY brit expat on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:42:02 PM PDT

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        •  Interesting thing about the Spirit Level... (5+ / 0-)

          findings:

          Income disparity seems to be the thing that drives the unhappiness. The researchers looked at both rich nations and poor. Poorer nations did not always have a robust social safety net because the whole nation was doing without. If the income disparity was high, unhappiness was high--even in wealthy nations. If the income disparity was low, happiness was high--even in the poor nations.

          The reason may be that if we feel everyone is treated the same, then we are all in the same boat--there is more social cohesiveness. On the other hand if some have much more than others, even if all are better off than most nations, the lower classes strive to catch up, creating strain. Upper classes strive to maintain or advance their lead.

          It may have much more to do with human psychology than any tangible benefit acquired from a more equal economy.

          De air is de air. What can be done?

          by TPau on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:54:29 PM PDT

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    •  Yes, A Longitudinal Comparison Would Be Great. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NY brit expat, TPau, aliasalias

      I'm not sure when Gallup started doing this global survey, but will take another look at their website and see if I can find some dates.

      Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support universal health care,unions, WikiLeaks and Occupy Wall Street! Time for a totally new, democratic economic system. Turn the corporations into worker cooperatives!

      by Justina on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:30:10 PM PDT

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