Sunday, March 12, 2006

Benefits of the Unreality-Based Community; Update

Square in the Nuts summarizes a Boston Globe op-ed piece of shit
It's as if somebody macerated a bunch of Republican talking points in a blender, then decanted the resulting ooze into a clyster and inserted it in the author's right ear.

Linda Gosselin says conservatives are happier than libs because cons look on the Bright Side of Life.

Do I really need to point out that the whistling, singing Jews were still nailed to crosses and about to die? But at least they were happy, and that's what really counts.

...Mahablog has a post that complements this one, about Bubble Boy Bush.
...senior staff members insist that Mr. Bush is in good spirits ... he has become so inured to outside criticism that he increasingly tunes it out.

The President’s snowballing political problems are not the result of his being “off his game.” It’s a result of [going on] six years of flaming incompetence finally catching up to him. A ship of state as big as the U.S. will sail along for a while out of sheer entropy, no matter who’s guiding it. But not forever.

But at least Bush is in good spirits.

Update: The issue isn't that it is true that Republicans report to being happier than Democrats. The issue is why Republicans are happier than Democrats.

George Will has his theory (hat tip 6thcitizen): because Conservatives are pessimists, they are rarely disappointed or proven wrong, are happy to be proven wrong when they are, and believe in fending for themselves.

I think Will's theory reinforces my own: Conservatives are living in a fantasy land.

The poll itself makes no statements about why Republicans are happier, but it does say there are many factors that go into determining happiness, all of which are dominated by Republicans. (BTW, the poll makes the distinction between conservatives and Republicans; it's Republicans more than conservatives who are happier).

I'm not sure why it is that Republicans are happier, but it can't simply be that any one or combination of factors alone determines it. Some factors have more weight than others. For instance, education, wealth, religiosity, marital life and age, by themselves and in groups, are some of the indicators of happiness. But more than any other, good health is "the factor that makes the most difference in predicting happiness ..."

And the factor that most correlates with unhappiness is being unhealthy. If Universal Healthcare creates a healthier population, would more people be happier and become Republicans? Possibly, but only if Republicans supported Universal Healthcare. But I think the more likely outcome would be that more Democrats would report being happy.

The counter-argument would be that poor Republicans, with all the attendant social problems, are still happier than poor Democrats. That may be so, but I still question: why? I've known plenty of poor Republicans, and their happiness stems from their ability to bitch about how much wrong has been done to them. But they're still happy!

So what does it mean? Until we have Universal Healthcare with a healthier, happier population, we may never know for sure. But I still think it has to do with delusional thinking. People who can look past the garbage in their yard to appreciate the sun slanting through the trees will surely be happier than people who focus on the garbage. (The latter are also more likely to pick the garbage up ... but if you acknowledge the reality that more garbage will collect, you might get unhappy).

Today's Theme: Delusionally Happy Repubs
Delusional Smug Superiority
Ignorance is Bliss
More Con Happiness
Al Qaeda Heroes in a Half Shell

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