According to a recent Gallup poll, Mexico is the world’s fourth happiest country, following on the heels of, from third to first, the Philippines, Colombia and Fiji.
If the Gallup’s top ten is to be believed (the other six of which include Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Papau New Guinea, Indonesia, India, and, tying for 10th, Argentina and Holland), the presence of the majority of its entrants would seem to fly in the face of the assumption that a high GDP is a prerequisite for well-being. Or political stability, for that matter: the Philippines in particular has been roiled by unrest and violence in recent years.
Those bringing up the rear on Gallup’s list were, from least to worst, Ghana, Turkey, South Africa, Hong Kong, Brazil, Moldova, Greece, Ukraine, Iraq and Iran.
Apparently though, a lack of optimism doesn’t necessarily suggest to the Gallup pollsters that a given country’s inhabitants are unhappy; while the Philippines, number three, have a sunny view of their economic prospects, the attitudes of two countries on the top ten happiest list, Mexico and Papau New Guinea, were characterized by pessimism.
Gallup’s team of pollsters interviewed 53,769 people from 55 countries. Their overall results were the following: 59 percent of interviewees said they were happy, 28 percent neutral, 11 percent unhappy, and two percent either didn’t know or failed to respond.