Booster Shots' Karen Kaplan certainly got my attention when she wrote this afternoon that we could see the creation of a "U.S. Department of Happiness" someday. Uh, come again? She explains:
That’s right. There’s a growing movement among economists and other researchers to make the psychological well-being of citizens a major government priority. The first step, they say, is to come up with a way to measure a nation’s happiness. Ideally they’d like to be able to boil it all down into a single statistic that will resonate with voters – think of it as a mental health equivalent of GDP or the unemployment rate.
If this all sounds ridiculously far-fetched, consider that the U.S. government is already “taking steps to measure quality of life,” according to a commentary published in Thursday’s edition of the journal Nature. So are government officials in Britain, Germany, China, France, Australia, Ecuador, Italy and Spain.
Photo by Candie_N