10 July 2010

Those "socialist" countries? They're happy!

by cal in cali

I had to laugh as I read this article in Forbes magazine, of all places (OK, it was originally on Yahoo Travel):

"World's Happiest Places: A new report reveals where people feel most positive about their lives"

So America is #1, right? Hmmm.

You know those horrible "socialist" European countries that the wingnuts are always screeching about? They're hell, right? Depressing, soulless gulags of government-controlled misery, lacking all the glorious freedoms that make us the best country on Earth?

Oddly enough, Forbes magazine (whose motto is "The Capitalist Tool") reports that:

...happiness levels are highest in northern European countries.

How can this be? And when will Fox News report it?
Answers: 1) Read the article. 2) Never.

The Top 10 list of Happiest Countries is as follows:

New Zealand
This must really burn up the wingnuts! Our socialist neighbor Canada is #6! And the US didn't make the top ten.

Well, maybe it's OK if we're not happy, because we work hard, while those lazy nanny-state losers lay around all day being coddled.....

While the global economic crisis has taken a toll on every nation, the countries that scored at the top still boast some of the highest gross domestic product per capita in the world. Denmark, which got the highest score, is not only a wealthy country, it's also highly productive, with a 2009 GDP per capita of $68,000, according to the International Monetary Fund. The United States' GDP per capita, by contrast, is $47,335.

How can this be? They're "socialist" and yet they are productive and have high GDP? Higher than the world's bastion of capitalism?

Glenn Beck's mind will not be able to compute this data.

Now, if President Obama takes any steps towards the policies that help create these levels of happiness in those countries' citizens, the wingnuts will scream bloody murder. Fox News is already reporting the "end of capitalism." Because its our God-given right to make as much money as possible and achieve the American Dream. Then we'll all be happy, right?

Hmm. The article states:

Wealth alone does not bring the greatest degree of happiness.

Shocking! Why, that sounds like a socialist statement right there! Were these words actually printed in Forbes magazine?

The wingnuts would probably say that those "socialists" are so happy because they're all on welfare, right?

Low unemployment also contributes to happiness. "One thing we know for sure," says the OECD's Chapple, "not having a job makes one substantially less satisfied." Denmark's unemployment rate is just 2%, according the C.I.A.'s World Factbook. Norway's is just 2.6%. The Netherlands: just 4.5%. Many economists concur that a 4% unemployment rate reflects a stable economy. The U.S. unemployment rate is currently 9%.


Let's hear more from the Republicans about how we can never be more like Europe, because they're all socialists and that's bad, bad, evil and bad. No one in America would want social policies that actual contribute to people feeling more content with their lives, right?

This ranking was based on a Gallup World Poll that asked questions like:

Did you enjoy something you did yesterday? Were you proud of something you did yesterday? Did you learn something yesterday? Were you treated with respect yesterday?

Try asking yourself those questions. And think about how people in a truly happy country answered them.

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