2.10      ndian    onom
           the war-ravaged Afghanistan that is at                   drag of 10 to 25 per cent (due to legacy
           145th)—Pakistan at 75th (up five spots                   factors). Meanwhile, the greatest human
           from last year), Nepal at 101st, Bhutan at               migration in history—the hundreds of
           97th, Bangladesh at 115th, Sri Lanka at                  millions of people who have moved from
           116th and China at 86th spot.                            the Chinese countryside into cities—has
           Finland has got several accolades from                   not advanced happiness at all.
           the report as—the most stable, the safest           The report ends on a different tack, with
           and best governed country in the world         a focus on three emerging health problems that
           together with being the least corrupt and      threaten happiness—obesity, the opioid crisis, and
           the most socially progressive and the happiest depression. Although set in a global context, most
           immigrants. Its police are the world’s most    of the evidence and discussion are focused on the
           trusted and its banks the soundest. These      USA, where the prevalence of all three problems
           are the achievements of a country (with        has been growing faster and further than in most
           5.5 million population) which faced the        other countries.
           last naturally caused famine just 150 years
           back.                                          the meAning of hAPPiness
           The report devotes a special chapter to        The word ‘happiness’ is quite complex and is not
           why the USA, ranked 18th (down four            used lightly. Happiness is an aspiration of every
           ranks from the last report), once towards      human being, and can also be a measure of social
           the top of happiness table, has slipped        progress. Yet, are the citizens of different countries,
           down the league despite having among           happy? If they are not, what, if anything, can be
           the highest per capita incomes. As per the     done about it? The key to proper measurement
           report, its happiness is being systematically  must begin with the meaning of the word ‘happiness’.
           undermined by three inter-related              As per the WHR 2013, the problem, of course, is
           epidemic diseases—obesity, substance           that happiness is used in at least two ways :
           abuse (especially opioid addiction) and             (i) As an emotion [‘Were you happy
           depression.                                              yesterday?’], and
           Latin America is renowned for                      (ii) As an evaluation [‘Are you happy with
           corruption, high violence and crime                      your life as a whole?’].
           rates, unequal distribution of income and           If individuals were to routinely mix up their
           widespread poverty, yet has consistently       responses to these very different questions, then
           scored relatively high in the happiness        measures of happiness might tell us very little.
           report. The report attributes this to ‘the     Changes in reported happiness used to track social
           abundance of family warmth and other           progress would perhaps reflect little more than
           supportive social relationships frequently     transient changes in emotion. Or impoverished
           side-lined in favour of an emphasis on         persons who express happiness in terms of
           income measures in the development             emotion might inadvertently diminish society’s
           discourse’.                                    will to fight poverty. Fortunately, respondents
           For the first time the report has included     to the happiness surveys do not tend to make
           the happiness of immigrants (in 117            such confusing mistakes. Both the WHRs did
           countries)—their happiness depends on          show that the respondents of the surveys clearly
           the happiness of the place where they          recognise the difference between happiness as an
           migrated to (the host country)—with a          emotion and happiness in the sense of life satisfaction.