19 July 2006

Happy Planet Index Ranking

I am sure a lot of your must have read about the Happiness Ranking where our dear old Singapore is ranked at a dismal 131th position out of a total of 178 countries. (Click picture to enlarge)

Now before anyone thinks that I am bashing the Gahmen again. I'm not. I just feel the need to explain the ranking from our own perspective.

If you look properly, you would realised that the top HPI ranked countries are those that are relatively poorer. However, does that mean that they are better off then us?

Let me give you an analogy. Just compare the kids of yesteryears and kids of today.

Last time when we were kids, we had so much fun flying paper kites that cost us 10 cents or marbles that come in 10 for the dime. Spiders and LongKang fishes are free.

Today we have kids who would brawled his/her eye sockets out just because he/she doesn't have a PSP or GBA. A toy that sets the parents back by several hundred dollars.

Now would you say that the kids of yesteryears were a better off bunch? No necessarily. There is this thing called Latent Demand.

We are less happy because we have more wants in this modern era and hence are having a more difficult time fulfilling each and everyone of them compared to the next person who lead a simpler life.

So anyway, here's a word out to the people not to be too worried about our relatively low ranking in the HPI, even though we have been pretty buay song with the Gahmen of late.

Chinese Idiom Of The Day.


- Voxeros

1. Chocolate left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 8:29 am
Well, i guess we are getting more and more greedy. Plus, there are more expectations from the parents to the children, resulting in the children feeling more pressurized.
And in turn, this pressure is converted to the need for material items to destress for some. That's how some of the wants come about. :p

2. akk left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 8:50 am
i agree. i'm glad i didn't have a lavish childhood.

3. meepok left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 9:25 am
Singaporeans in general are materialistic. Always want MORE, BETTER, DIFFERENT. In an era of consumerism, there is no way to catch up with new product launches. Hence these pple feel their needs are unmet. For me, things are simple. Gimme a kopi, an occasional tiger beer with ice @ kopitiam, a once in a blue moon ciggy and having an old talk cock buddy (like Jay) .......... I'm contented.

4. JayWalk left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 1:19 pm ::
Chocolate: Greedy is one thing and not wanting to lose out to the next fella is the other thing that drives people to chase for more and/or better.
May not necessarily need to have the most and/or have the best. Just more than and/or better than the next fella can liao.

Akk: What can I say, you are one of the more grounded people I know. Glad to have known in person. Certainly an honour and a pleasure.

Meepok: As the saying goes, "ai pee, ai chee, ai tua liap nee gu ai zhao looi". Haiz...
We have come a long way with the talking cock. More than 20 years in fact. :)

5. sunflower left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 3:30 pm
I agree, 知足常乐. And I am a happy person! yipeee ^_~

6. Pam left...
Thursday, 20 July 2006 5:28 pm
hey. it's not just Singaporeans who are unhappy. and incidentally there has been some research that has pointed out that there's a certain threshold of money that most people will be happy with (i'm talking about ordinary people, not millionaires or vv rich/famous people). once that threshold is reached, most people will seek happiness in other things (family, friendship, hobbies etc). ie, once we reach a certain amount, more money will not make a person happier.conversely, if we have reached that threshold and still haven't felt fulfillment in other sectors, we won't be happy. perhaps that's why Singaporeans aren't such a happy bunch.

7. JayWalk left...
Friday, 21 July 2006 12:40 am :: 
sunflower & Pam: I guess it all boils down to what is more important. Unfortunately, most people would put money as No.1. Lagi more unfortunately, sometimes, people are forced under circumstances to put money as No.1. 

In other words, it is not the person seeking money problem but money problem seeking the person.

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