Man Without Qualities

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Happy, Happy, Happy

From the Washington Times:
A new poll has found that Americans are the happiest people on the planet. "With a few exceptions, Americans are generally happier with their lives and more optimistic about their future than most Europeans," a Harris poll states. The group plumbed the feelings of 1,000 persons from July 17 to July 21 to reveal that things are pretty good on these shores, despite bleak press reports about the direction of the country and persistent partisan criticism of the Bush administration. The poll found that 58 percent [of Americans] are "very satisfied with their lives," compared with a 15-country European average of 31 percent. ... An additional 56 percent of Americans think their lives have improved since 2000, compared with a 45 percent average among the Europeans. ... The survey found that 65 percent of Americans expect their personal situation to improve in the next five years, compared with 44 percent of Europeans.... The only country that tops the United States in terms of overall satisfaction is Denmark, where 64 percent said they were "very satisfied" with their lives -- six points higher than their American counterparts.
Time to visit - or even move to - Denmark? Garrison Keillor of Prairie Home Companion fame had a Minnesota childhood he describes as "very happy," but moved to Denmark in 1987 with his second wife. He eventually returned to the U.S., where, after another divorce, he married wife number three, a violinist. Ironic?

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