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Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, April 24, 2015 9:37:52 AM

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Joined: 9/12/2011
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Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
I wasn't sure whether to put this in the "Business & Finance" section - but decided it was better here.

I've included three links because there seems to be some trouble with some sites due to "data protection laws in Europe".

The Independent (UK Link)
CBC(Canada Link)
CBS - (USA link)

A couple of interesting points here.

1. The original article (abstract here) which found that 'happiness' tends to rise as income rises (pretty much as expected), but only until (in the USA) income reaches about $70,000 per year.
With income becoming higher than this, the people are no happier.
They can afford even more luxuries, but these do not make them any happier.
From experience, "financial stress" is handled with an income somewhere around $40,000 (depending on things like marriage, number of children, local cost of living etc) - but this is not the same, this is just the point at which it stops being a constant or recurring worry.
I would guess that the 'happiness cutoff' here is about the same as the USA on average - $70,000 or £55,000.

2. The fact that, when this was implemented, the business expanded to such an extent that the company expects to hire more staff within a month.
The CEO is receiving about $100,000 - 20% or so more than the 'workers' (with some managers on salaries between the $70,000 and his $100,000).
It would seem that workers who have no personal finance stress, who are happy, produce well enough to attract more custom without need for extra promotion, gimmicks, and so on.

3. "Meanwhile, American workers have been suffering from stagnating and, in some cases, declining wages. According to Pew Research, today's average hourly wage has the same purchasing power as it did in 1979, after adjusting for inflation. Most gains have gone to the upper income brackets, while the lowest paid workers have seen weekly wages decline in real terms." (This is the same in the UK).
Kat
Posted: Sunday, April 26, 2015 11:04:27 AM
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Joined: 5/19/2009
Posts: 878
Neurons: 3,389


Hello Drag0nspeaker,
This may not be an appropriate response since I haven't read the links yet.

I'm not sure that with wealth comes happiness, but I wouldn't mind suffering through
a few years of being wealthy to find out for sure. There's just so much darn great
stuff waiting to be acquired.
And....you don't even have to be talented to be rich. Look at the Kardashians (sp?).
Have any of them ever worked a day in their life?
I also believe that while wealth may relieve financial stress, it probably comes with
a myriad of stress factors all it's own. However...um...I'd still be willing to try it.
ellana
Posted: Sunday, April 26, 2015 1:34:11 PM
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Joined: 12/19/2010
Posts: 673
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Location: Roquefort, Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur, France
I have a really hard time visualising happiness on a chart. For me, this feeling has its ups and downs all though life no matter how much you have in your pocket. There are way too many variables to put a poured in concrete value to it. However, I have to agree that many people at the top of the salary ladder are often grossly overpaid. How much excess can one have in one year?? or a lifetime?? How about athletes who earn obscene amounts of money for hitting or kicking a ball?
TheParser
Posted: Sunday, April 26, 2015 5:01:41 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2012
Posts: 4,668
Neurons: 22,062
The 10 Happiest Countries in the World:

1. Denmark
2. Norway
3. Switzerland
4. The Netherlands
5. Sweden
6. Canada
7. Finland
8. Austria
9. Iceland
10. Australia

The United States is #17. I shan't ruin the festive mood by commenting on this relatively low number.

-- Source: The 2015 World Happiness Report published today in the online edition of the Telegraph (of London)
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, April 27, 2015 9:46:30 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 34,355
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Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hello Kat and Ellana - yes, it's very true that, really, happiness does not depend on wealth.

However, it does seem that, as a broad concept, 'unhappiness' does seem more common amongst poorer people.

"There is no single key to happiness," said Jeffrey Sachs, The Sustainable Development Solutions Network's director and an economics professor at Columbia University. "All of these countries do well in several ways. Being rich? That's good, but it's only a modest part of the story. Trusting society, having a government that ranks on low in corruption, a society where people are generous and volunteering -- all of these are important for happiness." CNN News Report

Personally - so long as I have enough to eat and pay bills, I'm happy when I'm actually doing something worthwhile with a visible product.
OK, there are little ups and downs - someone I like comes to visit, I'm happier - I forget my keys at work, I'm not so happy - I have a good meal, I'm happy again. However the only time I'm unhappy is when I have nothing useful to do.

I obviously found a slightly different 'happiness Report' than the one The Parser found - but the results are virtually the same.
This one is the LiveScience report on "United Nations Happiness Report".

The figures they use are based on seven points:
1. GDP per person (how much the people produce on average)
2. Social support (how well the government support the people)
3. Healthy life expectancy (how long does the average person stay healthy?)
4. Freedom to make life choices.
5. Generosity (not sure how this is measured. "Donations to official charities" doesn't sound right to me)
6. Perceptions of corruption (how aware are the people that their politicians are ripping them off, and are in the pay of multi-national industry and Big Pharma?)
7. "Dystopia" - I have no idea how this is 'graded' or measured.

The top ten are basically the same in both reports (Austria is replaced by New Zealand).

The USA is actually #15 in the one I found - not a bad score at all!
The points which are noticeably smaller for the USA than most of the top twenty are "freedom to make life's choices" (worse than all except Israel, Mexico and Brazil) and "Perception of Corruption".

Ah well - Better than the UK - which doesn't appear in the top 20.
Kerry.P
Posted: Monday, April 27, 2015 11:39:57 PM
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Joined: 5/7/2012
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Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
I once attended a presentation by wealthy people.

The only thing I can remember is one person's statement that agreed with the truism that money cannot buy happiness. He then went on to say that having enough money removes (or reduces) the arguments about money. He gave examples, including one of not having to argue about whether or not their children could go on a school excursion - there was money enough for that.

I liked that thought.

It sort of ties in with DragOn's statement that happiness is having enough to pay for food and bills (and a roof over one's head).
ellana
Posted: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 12:06:32 PM
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Joined: 12/19/2010
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Location: Roquefort, Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur, France
DragOn... I have to agree with you that being occupied with something we like to do seems to keep negative thoughts at bay. I stay away from statistical reports and graphs that show all these 'scientific' happiness measurements. One has ups and downs throughout life so no emotion, positive or negative, remains constant.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Thursday, April 30, 2015 5:42:43 AM

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Joined: 9/21/2009
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Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
James,
you have copied the old report. This year's report gives these countries as the 20 happiest:

1. Switzerland
2. Iceland
3. Denmark
4. Norway
5. Canada
6. Finland
7. Netherlands
8. Sweden
9. New Zealand
10. Australia
11. Israel
12. Costa Rica
13. Austria
14. Mexico
15. United States
16. Brazil
17. Luxembourg
18. Ireland
19. Belgium
20. United Arab Emirates

Source: http://worldhappiness.report/
TheParser
Posted: Thursday, April 30, 2015 6:28:12 AM
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Joined: 9/21/2012
Posts: 4,668
Neurons: 22,062
Jyrkkä Jätkä wrote:

you have copied the old report.



Thank you very much for the correction.

As a journalist manque, I am totally humiliated!
tootsie
Posted: Thursday, April 30, 2015 6:34:02 AM

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