Happiness in Europe

blog post

Happiness in Europe, within the EU

I found the following chart in this week’s Heti Válasz, thought I would share it with you. The question is: “All in all, are you happy?”

Seems like the Danes are the happiest folks in Europe, 97% of them answered yes to this question. Then comes Holland, Belgium and Ireland, then Sweden, Luxembourg and Finland – with barely any difference in their scores. Slovenia is the happiest country among the 2004-EU-joiners which is not particularly surprising, considering they have the highest GDP within this circle.

Hungary scored 68%, way below the European average. The last two entries are Romania and Bulgaria – the latest EU-joiners and perhaps the poorest countries of the entire continent.

Now, the sad thing about this chart is that you really can’t say that happiness is not the question of money. Of course money doesn’t make anyone happy, but people who constantly have to worry about basic things like eating, clothing and housing won’t be able to focus on individual fulfillment and personal achievment.

When asked about the biggest worries in life, Swedes, Danes and Finns talked about environmental concerns, global warming and animal cruelty in the first place, people in the UK complained about the high crime-rate and international terrorism, whereas Hungarians were most afraid of never getting the chance to own an appartment and not getting any financial support from the state after they get retired. Other common Hungarian worries, according to the survey: health care, tax system, inflation, unemployment and not being able to raise children. Global warming and animal cruelty were not even mentioned.

Well, that’s what my cousin defines the following way: “The world’s dick is rotting”.

Thanks god I’m far more optimistic than the average. At least I naively believe I’ll live by European standards within a couple of years.  Hopefully a fancy headhunter will see my worx and pix and cv, and call me to ask if I’m interested in making 1500 Euro/month by being the chief editor of the newly established Hungarian edition of Orkus or Zillo. 

Posted in my blog May 2007  


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