ARE CANADIANS HAPPY?

Economists and politicians have taken to something called “A Happiness Index” to measure the relative satisfaction if their country’s citizens.

The idea behind a happiness index makes a lot of sense. It is that the well-being of a country is measured in the committment of its people to each other, their communities, the environment and their democratic  institutions. Canada’s own Index of Well-being tacks 64 indicators in eight areas: leisure and culture; community vitality; living standards, enviornoment, democratic engagement, education, healthy population and time use.

The index shows that between 1984 and 2008 our GDP grew by 31 per cent.  At the same time our well-being lagged well behind, at 11 per cent.

Even so, taking the world at large (and our U.S.  neighbours) are Canadians generally happy?

Do you know many Canadians who would like to change their citizenship for that of another country?

Are Canadians happy?

What do you think?

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12 Comments »

  1. 1

    “According to CROP , 71 per cent of Quebeckers think the sovereignty debate is “outdated”‘ up from 58 per cent last year.” Neil said.
    THAT makes me really, really happy!
    I would suggest that statistic reflects contentment among Quebekers. Yeah!

    Between 1984 -2005. I was a contributor to the growth index of 31%, so I’ve done my part. My well-being index is fine, thank you.
    Now, I am retired, couldn’t-care-less about most concerns, and plan to live the rest of my life in this “rose coloured bubble” as a proud Canadian.
    I’ve earned it!

  2. 2
    jim Says:

    Am glad to see that Littlepatti is a happy camper. In today’s e-Globe& there is a question to be answered by the inquisitive, “Is Harper doing a good job as prime minister?” No 53%. Does this figure also represent the happiness level of the Canadians? How far down would the happiness level go, if the people who think they are all set, saw this headline sometime in the future? “Governments and corporations to decrease pensions due to global and national financial problems?” I can recall that things were so bad during the big depression that we ate beans out of a tin pieplate and when finished we turned the pieplate over and indented the bottom of the plate and poured molasses into the concave. We then ate our dessert by dipping french crusted bread into the molasses.This was on a farm. Were we happy as kids? It all depended on whether I had to heave cowshit (a.k.a.plop pies) after lunch. At the other end of the barn were the layers (chickens, that is) and I would catch an egg before it had time to hit the ground. I would run back to the house and 3-minute it, for instant happyville. At other times I was bored and I would go into the chicken coop and tuck the chickens’ head under their wings. They would fall asleep. My grandma was missing eggs, because it seems the chickens were disoriented and the thought it was still nighttime, when it was really dawn. Back to the cow pies..

  3. 3
    Neil McKenty Says:

    Of course personal happiness will vary widly among individual Canadians.

    But taking the country as a whole, is there a happier place to be on the face of the earth.

    Where is it?

  4. 4

    I don’t think Canadians would trade their citizenship for U.S. citizenship, that is, if it were an either/or proposition.

    But I do believe that the vast majority of Canadians would dearly love to have the ability to work and live in the United States without restrictions..and, yes, they would give their first born for that privilege.

  5. 5

    I would never trade all my Canadian advantages to live in the USA… or my first born
    🙂
    I appreciate Medicare, & in QC: Pharmacare, Daycare, Senior rebates & reasonable University tuitions for the grand daughter. I live 3 miles from the US (NY) border, and have had very few restrictions. I buy unlimited gas, & groceries & have bought $60.+ in clothing without having to pay duty. All in all I save about $4000. per year, easily.
    I am also near a US airport that offers cheap flights south, & free parking.
    What’s not to like?
    I’ve given up worrying about world-wide recessions. It’s beyond my control.
    I’ve even learned to live guilt-free, everything comes from China.

    My dad lived through the 30’s. He said ” I was 14 years old when I found out that there was more to a chicken than the pope’s nose”.

  6. 6
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Littlepatti:

    Sounds like you get the best of both worlds.

    It alao makes me angry to know that there is such a difference in retail prices between the two cointries. Gas I can understand because Canada puts so much tax on it. But everything else? Free trade should have given us parity.

  7. 7

    You are right.
    There is $1.00 per gallon difference. Is that all tax?
    I would shop in Canada if I could find a fair price on “Canadian made” goods.
    In the meantime. I do love a bargain!

  8. 8
    joe agnost Says:

    Shopping in the U.S. sure doesn’t help the Canadian economy… I’m just sayin’…

  9. 9

    Joe, higher prices in Canada don’t help our personal economies, either. Guess which one is more important to Patti, Tony, and me?

  10. 10

    I’m going to go out on a limb a say you value your personal economy more… do I get a cookie?

    I understand your position, I know lots of people who side with you on this. I just happen to want to do everything I can locally – going to a Walmart would make me physically ill, I’d rather support our local stores who in turn support locals.

    Of course I also understand how lucky I am that I can (financially) support my local econmy. Many people just don’t have the money to be able to avoid Walmart…

  11. 11

    Importing all goods “made in China” does not make for a great Canadian economy either. If we could manufacture more goods here, that would make a difference. I don’t think that what I spend in the USA is relevant. I invest in Canadian companies, and pay taxes to the Canadian government, as well as school taxes, municipal taxes, restaurant taxes, as well as many purchases such as furniture, appliances, cars, etc & the taxes on them.
    My after tax income is mine, mine mine! 🙂

  12. 12

    Correction: I pay taxes to the Canadian & Quebec governments and every other level of government.


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