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Thread: Prosperity measures: chuckles per capita instead of GDP per capita ?

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    Politics.ie Member cyberianpan's Avatar
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    Default Prosperity measures: chuckles per capita instead of GDP per capita ?

    I was reading this

    Over 52? Then you're probably grumpy | Reuters
    While infants laughed up to 300 times a day, that figure had fallen to an average of six laughs by teenage years and only 2.5 daily chuckles for those over 60, the survey for cable TV channel Dave found.
    And it reminded me of a debate amongst economists and psychologists about whether we should try to measure hedonia alongside traditional economic meausures. Indeed others would suggest we should be measuring eudaimonia. However measuring these is quite difficult, though the above survey suggests such might be feasible.

    So what about chuckles per capita... or can you think of other measures ?

    cYp
    "Yawn , am I alive yet ?"

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    Moderator Conor's Avatar
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    Happy Planet Index - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Here's a funny thing - Ireland climbed in this index from 113th in 2006 (with a score of 39.38) to 78 in 2009 (scoring 42.6). You wouldn't think it.
    Nothing will motivate the lazy / apathetic / Americanised / west-British types to embrace their culture and the Irish language.

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    Politics.ie Member cyberianpan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conor View Post
    Happy Planet Index - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Here's a funny thing - Ireland climbed in this index from 113th in 2006 (with a score of 39.38) to 78 in 2009 (scoring 42.6). You wouldn't think it.
    Which is why the debate rages so fiercely amongst social scientists

    Deciding what exactly to measure, and how to do so reliably is very tough - the above index is from loonynomicists- though this area is becoming more mainstream in economics

    cYp
    "Yawn , am I alive yet ?"

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    Politics.ie Member ONQ's Avatar
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    Laughter in the face of adversity is not madness.

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    Politics.ie Member farnaby's Avatar
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    I'd go negative and look for marginal propensity toward despair/fear/anger/inferiority/boredom/loneliness. A society which minimises these gives its people freedom to flourish.

    The laughter measurement is good but beware tears of a clown and all that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Conor View Post
    Happy Planet Index - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Here's a funny thing - Ireland climbed in this index from 113th in 2006 (with a score of 39.38) to 78 in 2009 (scoring 42.6). You wouldn't think it.
    Less status anxiety, perhaps?
    Never let the best be the enemy of the good.

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    Politics.ie Member cyberianpan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnaby View Post
    I'd go negative and look for marginal propensity toward despair/fear/anger/inferiority/boredom/loneliness. A society which minimises these gives its people freedom to flourish.

    The laughter measurement is good but beware tears of a clown and all that.

    Well laughter is only one measure, so others would be needed. So I guess there'd be 3 broad categories

    • Abnormal psychology: less of items such as you mention
    • Hedonic: chuckles and more
    • Eudaimonical: this is tougher again to measure


    Studies by Kahneman et al tend to indicate a tight correlation with hedonia and monetary earnings... though the correlation vanishes above a certain threshold. The earnings threshold has shown to be order €30-60k in developed countries, a lot lower than some might have expected. Though of course what hasn't been measured, is whether such a threshold relates to the enjoyment of relative , or absolute wealth

    cYp
    "Yawn , am I alive yet ?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibis View Post
    Less status anxiety, perhaps?
    That particular index includes environmental impact as well as wellbeing measures. Thus, surely Ireland's move up the ladder has more to do with our lowered levels of road building, house building, dumping (from decreased consumption) and motor purchasing?

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    Over 52? Then you're probably grumpy | Reuters

    Served a long apprenticeship since 52.
    Still laughing.

    The very great Ludwig Van Beethoven famed for his beautiful music and his contrariness is supposed to have exclaimed before he died, "The comedy is over!"

    Now, I know what he meant.

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    Politics.ie Member Panopticon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarahj View Post
    That particular index includes environmental impact as well as wellbeing measures. Thus, surely Ireland's move up the ladder has more to do with our lowered levels of road building, house building, dumping (from decreased consumption) and motor purchasing?
    Correct. IMO Happy Planet Index is kind of a joke. Like, people aren't emigrating to Vanuatu or Costa Rica or wherever has topped this year's chart. It basically measures low use of natural resources, i.e. poverty.

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