UN: Smallest nations the world’s happiest

In another strong rebuke to the mass immigration ‘Big Australia’ cabal, the United Nations has released its World Happiness Report, which reveals that nations/cities with small populations are the world’s happiest:

The 2020 report ranked 156 countries by how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be, based on their evaluations of their own lives…

Since the first report in 2012, only four countries have claimed the top spot: Denmark in 2012, 2013 and 2016, Switzerland in 2015, Norway in 2017, and now Finland in 2018, 2019 and 2020…

Finland came top by some margin, followed by Denmark, Switzerland, Iceland and Norway.

All the Nordic countries appeared in the top 10…

The 2020 report also ranked individual cities by residents’ perception of their own well-being for the first time…

“The World Happiness Report has proven to be an indispensable tool for policymakers looking to better understand what makes people happy and thereby to promote the wellbeing of their citizenry,” said Jeffrey Sachs, one of the report’s editors…

Check out the populations of the world’s happiest countries:

  1. Finland: 5.5 million
  2. Denmark: 5.8 million
  3. Switzerland: 8.5 million
  4. Iceland: 353,000
  5. Norway: 5.3 million
  6. Netherlands: 17.2 million
  7. Sweden: 10.2 million
  8. New Zealand: 5.0 million
  9. Austria: 8.8 million
  10. Luxembourg: 608,000

As you can see, all of the world’s happiest nations have populations below 18 million, with most having populations below 10 million.

Now check out the urban populations of the world’s happiest cities:

  1. Helsinki, Finland: 1.3 million
  2. Aarhus, Denmark: 1.4 million
  3. Wellington, New Zealand: 420,000
  4. Zurich, Switzerland: 1.8 million
  5. Copenhagen, Denmark: 2.1 million
  6. Bergen, Norway: 420,000
  7. Oslo, Norway: 1.6 million
  8. Tel Aviv, Israel: 3.8 million
  9. Stockholm, Sweden: 2.4 million
  10. Brisbane, Australia: 2.5 million

As you can see, all of the world’s happiest cities have populations below 4 million people.

Given the above, why are Australia’s policy makers so hell bent on running a mass immigration program that will grow Australia’s population to a projected 43 million people by 2066?

Alongside doubling the size of our major cities and creating two mega cities (Melbourne and Sydney) of around 10 million people each:

Clearly, this is a recipe for reducing Australian’s welfare and happiness.

Leith van Onselen

Comments

  1. Notably, the mega-states have dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic terribly:
    China, USA, Europe, Brazil, India, Indonesia.

  2. Why would anyone think the happiness of the most citizens is a priority, let alone a consideration of successive governments of Australia? Maintenance of power is the priority, all else is secondary.

    • It’s more important that people makethe economy ‘happy’ than an economy make people happy.

      • mikef179MEMBER

        It’s not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.

    • rob barrattMEMBER

      Richo beat you to it with “Whatever it takes”. They’re too cynical to even deny it.

  3. drsmithyMEMBER

    This kind of terrible reasoning is not helpful to anything.

    The full report is here: https://happiness-report.s3.amazonaws.com/2020/WHR20.pdf

    Ranked country list starts on p24.

    11-15 are (with populations):
    Canada (37m)
    Australia (25m)
    United Kingdom (66m)
    Israel (8m)
    Costa Rica (5m)

    Good grief, even within the top 10 you’ve posted the Netherlands is a massive outlier (nearly 2x the next lowest population) that arguably refutes your thesis on its own (ie: the only reason it’s “below 18 million” and not “below about 10 million”).

    • So, MB was cherry picking, as usual? The real issue is: what are those Norsemen so happy about? Not about the weather, I reckon.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        If I had to hazard a guess I’d say LVO didn’t look any further than the top 10 in the linked article. 🙂 I don’t think there’s any malicious intent here, just zeal.

    • NoodlesRomanovMEMBER

      Correlations don’t have to be absolute. Do you also point out that smoking must be fine because you know an 85yo smoker? Or global warming doesn’t exist because it was notably cold last Tuesday?

    • Geez you are intolerable. Since when are these types of correlations perfect? Even the next five most happy nations that you have cited have relatively small populations, outside the UK.

      This report is also a good counterpoint to wankers like Shane Geha, who claim that Australia’s cities must grow significantly to improve living standards. The cities listed in this report suggest the opposite.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Geez you are intolerable. Since when are these types of correlations perfect? Even the next five most happy nations that you have cited have relatively small populations, outside the UK.

        Come on. The point here is not that the correlation “isn’t perfect”, it’s that it’s non-existent.

        The next five are Ireland, Germany, the USA, Czech Republic and Belgium. I didn’t look them up, but I know the USA is ca. 330m which completely dwarfs everything else in the lineup.

        Now let’s look at the last five:

        Central African Republic (4.7m)
        Rwanda (12m)
        Zimbabwe (14m)
        South Sudan (11m)
        Afghanistan (37m)

        4/5 of those fit under your 18m.

        There’s another forty countries or so – mostly small – in the world that aren’t even mentioned in this, and I’m going to hazard a guess their scores probably wouldn’t be on the high side.

        This report is also a good counterpoint to wankers like Shane Geha, who claim that Australia’s cities must grow significantly to improve living standards. The cities listed in this report suggest the opposite.

        No it doesn’t. Canada scores (barely) higher than Australia and is 1/3 larger in terms of population. The UK scores (similarly barely) higher than Israel and has nearly an order of magnitude larger population.

        There’s no meaningful relationship to draw between population and happiness at all.

        There are, however, a lot of other causative things that do have meaningful impacts on happiness (like, say, a functioning legal system), and I’m assuming based on my five minute skim of the document that they are discussed in it. That’s where you should be focussing, not drawing some absurdly long bow about population.

        There are plenty of good arguments to support your position, don’t waste time on terrible ones.

        • drsmithyMEMBER

          There’s no meaningful relationship to draw between population and happiness at all.

          I’ll amend that to say there might be a relationship, but opposite to the one you are suggesting. Ie: higher happiness correlates to lower population growth (since higher happiness will correlate with things like strong legal protections for women, high levels of education, easy access to contraception, low infant mortality, etc, etc), and potentially from there to lower population (dependent on immigration effects, of course).

    • Perhaps what is more significant is that the top ten, baring NZ, have homogenous, stable societies that haven’t experienced rapid pop gains. Sweden’s population at the end of WW2 was 8 million, as was Australia’s. Sweden’s now is only 10 million whereas we’ve tripled ours in that time. I imagine that wealth/democracy/freedom also plays a significant role, hence the USA over poor African nations.

    • An alternative hypothesis, with possibly a stronger correlation and causation, could be strong economies, wealth distribution, social services etc. support ‘happiness’ irrespective of size?

  4. It’s worth pointing out that Switzerland has been running a huge immigration program, right up there with Australia’s. I have no idea whether it has broad popular support.

    I suspect Zurich’s so happy because you pretty much have to be rich to live there. Don’t know if they asked anyone in the service industries. I know someone who worked there as a chef for a while and it wasn’t easy.

    • Lol. That’s depressing. The Swiss even have the power to stop it, I imagine, via their direct democracy…

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      Switzerland has had a relatively high percentage of foreign residents for decades, though citizenship is relatively hard to acquire.

      They are much more focused on “high value” immigration.

      It obviously isn’t that unpopular, otherwise their direct democracy would have ended it.

  5. What they call 3.8m tel aviv is not a single city but a colection of semi independent cities around tel aviv.
    Newcastle and Wollongong are less of a separate cities than some parts of tel aviv metro area.
    Reality is that tel aviv has less than 2m