The Danish Rx for Happiness

According to Danish scholars, reporters and citizens speaking on CBS’ 60 Minutes, it seems the key to their world-leading happiness is quite simple.  In fact, I think the Honorable Marcus Garvey and Elijah Muhammad are sitting down together sharing a laugh.  The Danes do not have any colonies or designs on empire.  They also don’t have a heterogenous population filled with immigrants from their former colonies.

Big surprise.  Not really.

Of course, the implications of this initial finding (which was my thought upon hearing that Denmark ranked first in an international study) was simply too much for 60 Minutes to handle.  They shifted the focal point of the conversation to class.  In fact, they juxtaposed the relative happiness, defined as contentment by a perceptive student, with the strident acquisitiveness of Americans – especially New Yorkers residing on the Upper East Side.

60 Minutes was overwhelmed by the obviousness of the situation.  If the old maxim is true, it is not surprising that a head which has been stripped of its crowns can indeed rest easy.  I would imagine that the Danes would need some fairly big lies as well if they were forced to live, work and sleep amid the descendants of slaves who built their most valued institutions.  The sheer inescapability of that history would keep them awake nights.

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