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A recent "study":http://www2.warwick.ac.
uk/newsandevents/pressreleases/research_finds_the/ has been conducted by UKâ€™s University of Warwick and Hamilton College in the US to determine how subjective, self reported happiness levels across US states correlate with objective factors such as congestion and air quality across the USâ€™s 50 states.
The study also ranked the states by the correlated subjective/objective happiness levels. Several states in the top ten, namely Louisiana (#1), Mississippi and Alabama have caused many a raised eye-brow. And New Yorkers are "none too pleased":http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/22/nyregion/22nyc.html with their dead last ranking. Several commentators have noted a possible relation between level of education and lack of happiness. Which, of course, is sort of refuted by another "study":http://thefastertimes.com/parentingupdate/2009/12/14/study-says-happiness-increases-with-education-childlessness/ that says education increases happiness.
Perhaps ignorance truly is bliss.