North Korea: Second Happiest Place on Earth

Sounds about right.

North Korea: Second Happiest Place on Earth

According to a new “global happiness index,” North Korea is the second happiest place on earth, coming in just behind the number-one spot, China.

Just who’s behind this “study”? If you guessed China, you’re close—it’s North Korea! The North Korean, state-owned TV station Chosun released the global index, which was ostensibly compiled by “local researchers.” Since North Koreans aren’t allowed out of the country, nor foreigners in, this begs the question—how do “local researchers” compile a “global” index? Probably the same way Kim Jong-Il managed to hit 5 holes-in-one the first time he ever played golf.

You’ve gotta hand it to the North Koreans, though—they have mastered the oldest trick in the lying-and-cheating book: you’ve gotta make it look believable. Notice they didn’t go for the number-one happiest position. That would look suspicious. Instead China takes that designation—an honor that’s apparently been a major topic of conversation (and derision) on the Chinese web.

They let this rule slip on the back end of the list, however, clocking the United States in dead last on the happiness scale, at number 203, fifty spots behind North Korea’s other adversary: South Korea. Apparently we Americans are absolutely miserable.

The good news for the world, however, is that there are other happy places. It’s not just China and North Korea that enjoy robust happiness on the global happiness index. Oddly, however, these aren’t countries with super-rich civilian asset sharing programs like Norway, or countries with universal healthcare like Canada, or even countries with lots of sun, like the Bahamas.

So who rounds out the other spots in the top 5? Cuba, Iran, and Venezuela. Naturally.

Unfortunately for the rest of us, we probably won’t be allowed into North Korea anytime soon to see how good they really have it. Looks like we Americans are destined to duke it out here, suffering away in our misery at 203rd place on the happiness index.

[via Time]