This ole world continues to grow more complex and confusing with each new day, as new technical inventions roll off the assembly line and try to outdo the last – an irony that is no surprise to me since I’m a proponent of simple living.
Therefore, I wasn’t all that surprised to learn that Louisiana is the happiest place to be on the planet. That is especially true today as our Cajun Brethren bask in the Saints big win on Sunday.
My son, Braddock, is still down there celebrating and he reports he’s never been hugged by so many strangers or received so many well wishes. I’m afraid he’ll never come home.
But, Mississippi is right up there at #7! Brings a smile to my face as my oft-maligned state gets some long overdue respect.
People in sunny, outdoorsy states — Louisiana, Hawaii, Florida, — say they’re the happiest Americans, and researchers think they know why. A new study comparing self-described pleasant feelings with objective measures of good living found these folks generally have reason to feel fine.
The places where people are most likely to report happiness also tend to rate high on studies comparing things like climate, crime rates, air quality, religion and schools.
The happiness ratings were based on a survey of 1.3 million people across the country by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It used data collected over four years that included a question asking people how satisfied they are with their lives.
Economists Andrew J. Oswald of the University of Warwick in England and Stephen Wu of Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., compared the happiness ranking with studies that rated states on a variety of criteria ranging from availability of public land to commuting time to local taxes.
Probably not surprisingly, their report in a recent report in the journal Science found the happiest people tend to live in the states that do well in quality-of-life studies.
Yet Oswald says “this is the first objective validation of ‘happiness’ data,” which is something he says economists have been reluctant to use in the past.
You will note on the list below that Mississippi ranks Number 7 which goes to show all the “OTHER LISTS”on which my state is typically last or near the end, is merely propaganda perpetuated by the Damn Yankees (just kidding).
The state-by-state list (including Washington, D.C.), from happiest to least cheery:
6. South Carolina
13. North Carolina
14. South Dakota
24. New Mexico
25. North Dakota
28. New Hampshire
34. West Virginia
37. District of Columbia
42. Rhode Island
47. New Jersey
51. New York
Conley, Martha, Carole, Lota, Brenda, Sandy, Olivia, Tinker, are you listening? We have a place reserved for you, back in Mississippi or Louisiana.