Maybe this explains it

June 16, 2008


Thanks to Father’s Day, I called my father. We’re not really close (we see each other a few times a year) and in our short discussion (he had to let me go because some golf tournament was on tv) he did mention this interesting story that he was watching (a repeat of a 60 Minutes story) when the golf tournament went to commercials. The topic: Who are the happiest people in the world. It turns out it’s the Danes. Considering my heritage (3/4 Danish – 1/4 Irish/Scottish), I wanted to see this for myself. Here it is:

Apart from their high rates of drinking and smoking, the main reason Danes are so happy is that they have low expectations.

Danes have consistently low (and indubitably realistic) expectations for the year to come. Year after year they are pleasantly surprised to find that not everything is getting more rotten in the state of Denmark.

I love it. There has to be some genetics involved in this.

Sixty Minutes then goes on to push the idea that a more socialistic state is the reason for their happiness. If that were the case why would Germany (#35), the UK (#41) and France (#62) fall so far behind the US (#23) in the happiness scale?

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3 Responses to “Maybe this explains it”

  1. superdave524 Says:

    I really enjoyed this post. Sounds like the Danes have borrowed a little from Taoism/Budhism (four noble truths: life is painful; the origin of pain is desire; the end of pain comes from the end of desire; the end of desire comes from the Rules to Right Living (whatever those may be), and Christianity (whoever loves his life will lose it, whoever will lose his life for Christ/others will gain life. Seek first the kingdom of God, etc). Cool.

  2. John in IL Says:

    That or they drink (and smoke) their asses off.

  3. superdave524 Says:

    That, AND they drink and smoke their asses off.


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